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New Releases...

Organ Polychrome:
The French School featuring organist Jan Kraybill and the Julia Irene Kauffman Organ, Casavant Frères, Op. 3875. This is the premier solo recording of this new instrument! Strong appeal for organ aficionados and audiophiles!


 And now in Hybrid Surround Sound SACD format, the
Kansas City Symphony's Miraculous Metamorphoses.
This disc contains both 5.1 surround and stereo SACD layers, as well as a stereo compact disc layer made with the HDCD process for higher fidelity. A limited number of review copies are available. The CD version was released in March 2014.

Lorin Maazel 1930 - 2014

Lorin Varencove Maazel (March 6, 1930 - July 13, 2014) was an American conductor, violinist and composer.
Maazel was born to Jewish American parents of Russian origin in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, and brought up in the United States, primarily at his parents' home in Pittsburgh's Oakland neighborhood. His father, Lincoln Maazel (1903–2009), was a singer, teacher of voice and piano, and an actor (he co-starred in George A. Romero's 1977 horror movie Martin); and his mother, Marion "Marie" Shulman Maazel (1894–1992), founded the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra. His grandfather Isaac was a violinist in the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra for twenty years. Both Lincoln and Marie gave interviews for the Oral History Collection at the University of Pittsburgh, Lincoln's in 1994, and Marie's in 1974. These can be heard online.
Wikipedia Bio

NYTimes Obit

NEW CD Manfred Honeck and The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra play DVORAK and JANACEK

This release is the second in the "Pittsburgh Live!" series of multi-channel hybrid SACD releases on the FRESH! series from NEW release from Reference be featured on our MUSIClassical Concert radio stream. For more than 116 years, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has been known for its artistic excellence. The PSO has a rich history of the world’s finest conductors and musicians. Past conductors include the legendary names of Reiner, Steinberg, Previn, Maazel, and other greats. Reference Recordings. com
This tradition was furthered in fall 2008, when celebrated Austrian conductor Manfred Honeck became Music Director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. The PSO is critically acclaimed as one of the world’s greatest orchestras, and has completed more than 36 international tours, including 20 European tours, eight trips to the Far East, and two to South America. The PSO was the first American orchestra to perform at the Vatican in January 2004 for the late Pope John Paul II, as part of the Pontiff’s Silver Jubilee Celebration. The PSO also has a long history in the areas of recordings and radio concerts. As early as 1936, the PSO broadcast coast-to-coast, receiving increased national attention in 1982 when it began network radio broadcasts on Public Radio International. The PRI series with the PSO can be heard on classical WQED-FM 89.3 in Pittsburgh. Many PSO recordings remain in print and available, and they have won critical acclaim and many awards. This release and the entire "Pittsburgh Live!" Series are recorded and mastered by the team at Soundmirror, whose outstanding orchestral, solo, opera, and chamber recordings have received over 70 GRAMMY nominations and awards! Soundmirror has recorded for every major classical record label, now including Reference Recordings. FRESH! is part of Reference Recordings’ mission to encourage our artists and give them a strong platform for promotion and sales nationally and internationally.

Richard Strauss: 150th anniversary

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of Richard Strauss, who was born on June 11, 1864. Strauss, who enjoyed early success as both conductor and composer, was influenced in the second capacity by the work of Wagner. He developed the tone poem to an unrivalled level of expressiveness and, after 1900, achieved great success with a series of impressive operas, at first on a grand scale but later tending to a more Classical restraint. We mark his anniversary with a selection of recordings which, for the most part, were made either during his lifetime or shortly after his death in 1949.


Classics for Kids Foundation seeks support...

Thanks in advance for helping to spread the word about this worthy cause. In response to the decline of support for string instrument programs serving school-age children around the country, Classics for Kids Foundation was founded with a mission to create and support these programs through matching grants for quality new instruments. Since its inception, CFKF has supported more than 120 programs to kids in more than 30 states from Alaska to Maine. Thus far, it has provided string instruments valued at $1.5 million, and its programs are growing at an average rate of 25% annually. In 2013, CFKF created the CD label KidsClassics, providing an additional opportunity to support the Foundation through net proceeds of its CD sales and downloads. The two premiere KidsClassics releases are: The Muir String Quartet in quartets by Fritz Kreisler, Erwin Schulhoff and Alban Berg (KidsClassics #201301); and Viennese Gems with clarinetist Richard Stoltzman, pianist Judith Lynn Stillman, and cellist Reynolds in Beethoven’s Trio, Opus 38 (after the Septet) and the Zemlinky Clarinet Trio (KidsClassics #201302).

Claudio Abbado, Influential Italian Conductor, Dies at 80

Claudio Abbado, a conductor whose refined interpretations of a large symphonic and operatic repertory won him the directorships of several of the world’s most revered musical institutions — including La Scala, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Vienna Philharmonic, the Vienna State Opera and the Berlin Philharmonic — died on Monday, January 20, 2014. He was 80.NYTimes Obit
Warm, loving and generous in his relationships, Claudio Abbado inspires tremendous devotion and loyalty in his loved ones.

JOHN TAVENER 1944 - 2013

John Tavener, a British composer known for his meditative, sometimes passionate sacred works and colorfully scored orchestral pieces — including the popular cello concerto “The Protecting Veil,” and the haunting “Song for Athene,” which was performed at the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales — died on Tuesday, 12 November 2013,  at his home in Child Okeford, in southern England. He was 69.
The British composer John Tavener in 2007 at his home in Dorset, in southern England. Mr. Tavener, a composer informed by Orthodox Christianity, was heard throughout the world in his elegy, performed at the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales...NYTimes Obit | Home Page

Sir John Kenneth Tavener (28 January 1944 – 12 November 2013) was a British composer, known for his extensive output of religious works, including The Whale, "The Protecting Veil" and "Song for Athene". He began as a prodigy; in 1968, at the age of 24, he was described by The Guardian as "the musical discovery of the year", while The Times said he was "among the very best creative talents of his generation." During his career he became one of the best known and popular composers of his generation. Tavener was knighted in 2000 for his services to music and won an Ivor Novello Award...Wikipedia

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