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Tuesday 13 January 2009
And Haydn said – let there be enlightenment.
Soirée Rossiniana, Barbican Hall, London<br>Monteverdi Choir/ English Baroque Soloists, Christ Church, Spitalfields, London<br>London Philharmonic, Royal Festival Hall, London
Sunday 21 December 2008
Thursday 18 December 2008
Over at Christ Church Spitalfields, as part of the annual Winter Festival, John Eliot Gardiner has been serialising Bach's Christmas Oratorio.
Friday 10 October 2008
There are works in which a single detail steals the show. Leonardo's Mona Lisa is famous for that smile. Michelangelo's The Creation of Adam is famous for those hands. And Vermeer's View of Delft – well, not quite so famous. But among readers of Proust, at least, the painting can't be recalled without a mention of one particular bit.
Saturday 13 September 2008
Thursday 17 April 2008
Looking On was a transitional album in The Move’s career, with Jeff Lynne drafted in to replace the cabaret-bound Carl Wayne and share some of Roy Wood’s songwriting burden, en route to ELO.
Lost Highway, English National Opera, Young Vic, London<br/>Freiburg Baroque/Bernarda Fink, Barbican Hall, London
Sunday 13 April 2008
Sunday 30 March 2008
Franz Schmidt's oratorio had its first performance in Vienna two months after the Anschluss, which is about as bad a launch as you can get.
Sunday 16 March 2008
Philippe Herreweghe's 1986 recording of the Bach Motets has long been in the small pile of discs to be grabbed in case of a fire. Thanks to Trinity Baroque, that pile is now a little bigger. Prepared by tenor Julian Podger and performed conductorless by single voices and an expressive continuo team of violone and organ, this disc has unparalleled immediacy and drama. With interpolated chant and chorales to compensate for the omission of "Lobert den Herrn", and stunning performances of two chorale preludes on the organ of St Wenzel Church, Naumburg, by James Johnstone, the quality is simply extraordinary.
Thursday 17 January 2008
Where would "early music" have been without James Bowman? Probably not in the flourishing state it is now. And would the counter-tenor voice be the fashionable thing it is today, if he hadn't kick-started its emergence from the shadowy, over-refined realms inhabited by Alfred Deller? When Bowman breathed life into Britten's Oberon, and went on to incarnate Handel's heroes with burnished authority, the voice that had been banished to the liturgy was brought back centre-stage. The mountain of Baroque recordings he's created over the past 40 years all bear witness to his uniquely powerful and expressive sound.
Sunday 18 June 2006
Wednesday 24 May 2006
Tuesday 27 December 2005
Saturday 12 November 2005
Thursday 10 November 2005
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British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
Leaked documents show Ukip leaders approve NHS privatisation once it becomes more 'acceptable to the electorate'
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- 4 British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia