Arts and Entertainment

Fires Of Love, "Remember Me My Deir" (Delphian)

Tristan und Isolde, Symphony Hall, Birmingham

Lovers find new depths of passion

Album: Mozart, Symphony No 40 / Idomeneo (Avie)

Based in Cleveland, Ohio, the period-instruments orchestra Apollo's Fire was founded in 1992.

London Philharmonic Orchestra / Jurowski, Royal Festival Hall

As if it wasn’t enough to open a new London Philharmonic season with a simply tremendous performance of Mahler's 3rd Symphony, Vladimir Jurowski could not resist adding a preface. And the music he chose not only reminded us of the intriguing connection with Mahler's younger contemporary, Alexander Zemlinsky, in that both men loved the same woman, Alma Schindler, it also looked at life, love, and destiny from an obliquely different perspective.

Album: Szymanowski, Violin Concerto No 1/Symphony No 3, Deutsche Grammophon

Conductor Pierre Boulez brings welcome astringency to Szymanowski’s colour-burst orchestration in this live recording of the composer’s first Violin Concerto.

Album: Arvo Part, kristjan jarvi Cantique (Sony Classical)

With Arvo Pärt's Symphony No 4 only recently released, it's a convenient point to compare his Symphony No 3, written nearly 40 years earlier, which forms the centrepiece of this album helmed by Kristjan Järvi, younger brother of Paavo.

Prom 66: Berlin Philharmonic / Rattle, Royal Albert Hall, London

The Mahler had come the night before – this second Berlin Philharmonic Prom imaginatively chronicled the before and after.

Prom 62, Royal Albert Hall, London<br/>Prom 57, Royal Albert Hall, London<br/>Prom 61, Royal Albert Hall, London

What a powerful trio &ndash; music, silence and ear-splitting applause

First Night: Simon Rattle / Berliner Philharmoniker, Royal Albert Hall, London

A rapturous response to Rattle's return

Album: Paavo Jarvi, Orchestre de Paris Bizet: Symphony In C; Jeux d'Enfants; Roma (Virgin Classics)

Written when the composer was just 17, the Symphony in C was regarded so dismissively by Bizet himself as a juvenile trifle that he neither published it nor had it played during his lifetime.

Prom 62: Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester/ Blomstedt, Royal Albert Hall

Like the Matthias Grünewald paintings that inspired it, Paul Hindemith’s Symphony “Mathis der Maler” sounds somehow, and quite miraculously, to be illuminated from within.

Prom 56: Minnesota Orchestra / Vanska, Royal Albert Hall, London

In a former life when the Minnesota Orchestra was the Minneapolis Symphony and “Living Presence” was a phrase on the tip of every record buff’s tongue, it would almost have come as a disappointment to hear the sophisticated beast the orchestra has now become in an acoustic as generous as the Royal Albert Hall.

Album: Arvo Part, Symphony No. 4 (ECM)

Almost 40 years on from his third symphony, Arvo Pärt returned to the form with this "Los Angeles" symphony, recorded at that city's Walt Disney Concert Hall with the LA Philharmonic last year.

Prom 30: BBC Symphony Chorus/London Brass/Jackson, Royal Albert Hall

Stephen Montague’s ‘Wilful Chants’ is a setting of primitive ululations, spells of sorcery, and Latin phrases wrapped in a shroud of synthetic liturgical cloth.

Prom 9: BBC Philharmonic Orchestra / Sinaisky, Royal Albert Hall, London

It’s the highlight of every “Last Night”, the nation’s unofficial National Anthem, but for its composer Hubert Parry Jerusalem has proved as much of a millstone (as opposed to milestone) as Land of Hope and Glory has for Elgar.

Prom 5: WDR Symphony Orchestra, Cologne/ Bychkov, Royal Albert Hall

It was Semyon Bychkov’s last concert as principal conductor of the WDR Symphony Orchestra, Cologne, and reaching the summit of Strauss’ Alpine Symphony could and should have been a big deal – the Albert Hall is a natural environment for this musical blockbuster.

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