THINGS ARE LOOKING UP
Recent Releases

Springtime is here, and it feels really, really good - has there ever been a stronger sense of revival? This year, it's nothing less than a societal resuscitation. In celebration, let's turn to What's New from MSR. Whether hearing a new artist or ensemble, new repertoire, or something tried-and-true, we promise you won't be disappointed in the latest listening material. Read on for brief introductions to What's New from Newtown.

Just in the door is the debut recording of Chinese violinist Kejia He in performances of one of the musical "litmus tests" of musical style and technique for the violinist, EUGÈNE YSAŸE'S 6 SONATAS FOR SOLO VIOLIN. The six musical portraits, dedicated to Joseph Szigeti, Jacques Thibaud, Georges Enescu, Fritz Kreisler, Mathieu Crickboom and Manuel Quiroga, run the gamut of violin expression, and Kejia rises to the task with great skill, and highly varied characterization. Next up in the What's New queue are gracious renderings of J.S. BACH KEYBOARD PARTITAS, NOS.1, 4 and 5, by pianist Haskell Small. This fourth CD of his on MSR Classics (the earlier three being an album of music by Mompou and two of his own work, The Rothko Room and Book of Hours) is notable for what could be described as broad but precise performances of oft-recorded music. In Haskell's hands, the music has an unmistakable freshness to it. Note there is a Digital Only "sister" album available, featuring Sonatas Nos.2, 3 and 6. Next up is an album of late 19th century music for the American wind band (known as a "concert band" to many), THE GILDED AGE. If ever there was a time for some charming, cheerful "old-timey" band music, this is it. Newberry's Victorian Cornet Band, under the direction of Elisa Kohler, have put together an astonishingly fun concert of of long-buried material in brilliant new editions by Michael O'Connor. The tunes are terrific, the period-instrument performances are spirited, and rather striking audio production from the Candlewood Digital outfit brings it all home. Heading in a southerly direction, we end up in musical Cuba, courtesy of Cuban-born American pianist Elena Casanova. In her second release for MSR Classics (her first, RECORDANDO, was a big hit with press, radio and public alike), Casanova has returned with ENSUEÑOS DE CUBA (DAYDREAMS OF CUBA), featuring piano miniatures by more than a dozen Cuban composers. Elena brings passion and poignancy to these gems - have a listen, and I think you'll fall in love. Another notable album just in is THE SCHUMANN PROJECT, VOL.1, which offers Robert Schumann's Symphonic Etudes and Clara Schumann's Piano Sonata in G minor in compelling performances by a true poet of the piano, Ukrainian-born American pianist Inna Faliks. Ms. Faliks impressed us all before with her SOUND OF VERSE and BEETHOVEN releases on MSR, but this Schumann Project is bound to impress further. Moving into the realm of choral music, we proudly announce the release of the Baylor University A Cappella Choir under the direction of Brian Schmidt in a concert anchored by HERBERT HOWELL'S REQUIEM. In that work, and all the others on the program, the listener will marvel at the sheer beauty of sound created by the choir, captured by the SoundMirror engineers with an enviable "analog" warmth coupled with digital clarity. After a sharp turn, we go from lofty choral repertoire to smoky jazz on STARDUST - SONGS OF HOAGY CARMICHAEL. Featuring the trumpet talents of Mike Kaupa, to the bass gifts of Ric Vice, to the piano perfection of Tom George, these Carmichael charts life the listener to high of a night spent at the Village Vanguard. Coupled with its younger sister CD, TWILIGHT, this may be one of the best jazz albums you've ever heard. No joke! Keeping the trumpet and piano on stage for the next act, MSR Classics brings you INSIGHTS, a program of new music for trumpet and piano. Soloist Ryan Beach, a winner of the prestigious Ellsworth Smith International Trumpet Competition, performs the music with the perfect balance of bravado and subtlety. His accompanying pianist, Rachael Kerr, provides effective, sympathetic support.

So take it easy, keep happy, and Turn it up!

 

FINES FACULTATIS COGNITOS TRANSGREDERE

Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.”

[William H. Murray]

New Releases
CHOPIN THE ENCHANTER
Selected Piano Works
Frédéric Chopin

IRINA FEOKTISTOVA


[MS1776]
DISCOVERING THE CLASSICAL STRING TRIO
Volume 3
John Antes, Franz Anton Hoffmeister, Leopold Hofmann, Giovanni Battista Sammartini, Maddalena Lombardini Sirmen, Paul Wranitzky, Francesco Zannetti

THE VIVALDI PROJECT


[MS1623]
SHOSTAKOVICH & BRIDGE
Piano Sonatas
Frank Bridge, Dmitri Shostakovich

SALLY PINKAS


[MS1679]
MUSIC OF BARBARA HARBACH, VOL.14
MUSIC OF BARBARA HARBACH, VOL.14
Chamber Music VI
ST. LOUIS CHAMBER …

[MS1695]
DANCES OF THE YOGURT MAKER
DANCES OF THE YOGURT MAKER
Music for String Quartet and Turkish Folk
CARPE DIEM STRING …

[MS1785]
THE ART OF TRANSCRIPTION
THE ART OF TRANSCRIPTION
CME Presents, Vol.4
CENTER FOR MUSICAL …

[MS1778]
EUGENE YSAYE: 6 SONATAS
EUGENE YSAYE: 6 SONATAS
for Solo Violin, Op.27
KEJIA HE

[MS1774]
HERBERT HOWELLS: REQUIEM
HERBERT HOWELLS: REQUIEM
Sacred and Secular Choral Music
BAYLOR UNIVERSITY A …

[MS1757]