Arts and Entertainment

Last autumn Helene Grimaud released a fine recording of Brahms’ piano concertos under the baton of Andris Nelsons: to hear them perform the second concerto live with the Philharmonia Orchestra was to realise anew what a superb symbiosis they can achieve.

First Night of the Proms, Royal Albert Hall, London

After a slow start, the boy wizard brings magic to the piano

Rambert, Sadler's Wells, London<br/>Bern Ballett, Linbury Studio, London

Paul Taylor created 'Roses' in 1985, but it is only now that Rambert has taken on this tender work

Pinchas Zukerman/Royal Philharmonic, Royal Festival Hall

Pinchas Zukerman is a musician through whom history is stamped as through a stick of Brighton rock.

Alexander Melnikov, Wigmore Hall, London<br/>Robert Holl, Wigmore Hall, London

A pianist propelled to stardom and a singer at the height of his powers prove experience will out

Album: Brahms, Ein Deutches Requiem &ndash;J&#228;rvi/SRC/FRSO (Virgin Classics)

Paavo Järvi's spacious, serene reading of A German Requiem is beautifully recorded.

Album: Paavo Jarvi, Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem (Virgin Classics)

Following his brilliant interpretation of Beethoven's 9th, Järvi turns his attention to another German musical milestone, Brahms' most imposing work.

Murray Perahia, Barbican Hall

How to describe Murray Perahia’s qualities? Elegance, fluency, modesty, clarity – and an abiding sense of the poetic. In the final piece of Schumann’s Kinderszenen “Der Dichter spricht” – “the poet speaks” – Perahia’s own inner voice emerged in halting, half-imagined, recitative-like, phrases as if dreaming a potentially much larger canvas.

Album: David Wilde, Wilde Plays Beethoven (Delphian)

David Wilde follows his solo piano albums dedicated to Brahms and Schumann with these masterly interpretations of three of Beethoven's most imposing sonatas, in which he aims to show the composer's progression from despair at losing his hearing, through optimism to spiritual aspiration.

New CD celebrates Joseph Joachim, lynchpin of music-making in the Romantic era

The British violinist Daniel Hope is setting out to restore Joseph Joachim (1831-1907) to his rightful place as the lynchpin of music-making in the Romantic era, with a new CD entitled The Romantic Violin. And it's not a moment too soon, for some of the 19th century's crucial musical developments revolved around this violinist and composer.

Matthew Bell: Rant &amp; Rave (02/01/11)

Rant

Beloved Clara, Parham/Drake/Jarvis, Wigmore Hall

As a tale of love conquering all, then being conquered in turn by madness, and with the incursion of a third party to form the most chaste love-triangle in history, the saga of Robert Schumann, Clara Wieck, and Johannes Brahms is uniquely fertile soil for drama.

Albums of the year: Classical

Chamber music triumphed over grand projects in 2010, with the notable exception of Sir Mark Elder's luminous Götterdämmerung with the Hallé.

Letters: Tuition fee protests

Day of confrontation over student fees

Risor Festival of Chamber Music, Wigmore Hall, London

Each year, Risor - a small fishing town on the south-eastern coast of Norway - hosts an internationally renowned festival of chamber music.

Album: Suk, Ripening etc &ndash; BBC Symph / Belohl&#225;vek (Chandos)

Pupil of Dvorák, and sometime teacher of Martinu, Josef Suk died in 1935, just a few years before the Czech musical tradition was irrevocably severed by war.

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