Although most famous for his Mozart and Beethoven interpretations, Gulda also performed the music of J. S. Bach (often on clavichord), Schubert, Chopin, Schumann, Debussy and Ravel. His recordings of Bach's Well Tempered Clavier are well regarded by collectors. Apart from the Well Tempered Clavier, Gulda performed very few other pieces by Bach and recorded even fewer.
In celebration of this fascinating artist's life, we are proud to share a vintage recording of one of those Bach rarities: the Fugue all'imitatione di Posta
from the Capriccio sopra la lontananza del fratello dilettissmo in B-Flat Major, BWV 992, performed live at the 1959 Schwetzinger Festspiele.
This month we present Valentin Radutiu (cello), Benjamin Schaefer (piano) and Marcus Rieck (drums) in a jazz improvisation based one of Béla Bartóks Romanian Folk Dances (Molto moderato).
From Remembering the Rain, CD-No. 93.331
(Just click the link and follow instructions)
Delacroix's most influential work came in 1830 with the painting Liberty Leading the People, which for choice of subject and technique highlights the differences between the romantic approach and the neoclassical style. Although the French government bought the painting, officials deemed its glorification of liberty too inflammatory
and removed it from public view. Nonetheless, Delacroix still received many government commissions for murals and ceiling paintings.
Delacroix met George Sand in November 1834 but it was primarily the novelist’s romantic involvement with Chopin, begun in 1838, that brought the two closer. Delacroix appreciated the musician, whom he called his “little Chopin,” and was very fond of his music. Not long after their meeting, Delacroix began his iconic portrait of Chopin in 1838. (He included both Chopin and Sand in the painting, which he never completed, but after his death the two depictions were cut apart and sold separately.
Chopin and Delacroix became fast friends. Frequenters of the Paris salons, they shared an interest in fashion, cultivating the image of a “dandy.” Most of all, they shared a passion for music. Sand once described Delacroix standing alongside the piano as Chopin played: “He embarks on a sort of casual improvisation, then stops. ‘Go on, go on,’ exclaims Delacroix, ‘That's not the end!' 'It's not even a beginning…. I'm trying to find the right color, but I can't even get the form. You won't find the one without the other....'”
In honor of Delacroix's birthday we share a little music by his "little Chopin", we share the last movement, Allegretto from his Piano Trio in G Minor, Op. 8, performed by Kolja Blacher, Johannes Moser and Ewa Kupiec.
Joachim gave Brahms a letter of introduction to Robert Schumann and was welcomed into the Schumann family on arrival there.
Schumann, amazed by the 20-year-old's talent, published an article entitled "Neue Bahnen" (New Paths) in the 28 October 1853
issue of the journal Neue Zeitschrift für Musik alerting the public to the young man, who, he claimed, was "destined to give ideal expression to the times."
After Robert Schumann's death in 1856, Brahms divided his time between Hamburg, where he formed and conducted a ladies' choir, and Detmold in the Principality of Lippe, where he was court music-teacher and conductor. He was the soloist at the premiere of his Piano Concerto No. 1, his first orchestral composition to be performed publicly, in 1859. He had been composing steadily throughout the 1850s and 60s, but his music had evoked divided critical responses, and the first Piano Concerto had been badly received in some of its early performances. His works were labelled
old-fashioned by the 'New German School' and in 1860, Brahms attempted to organize a public protest against some of the wilder excesses of the Wagnerians' music. This took the form of a manifesto, written by Brahms and Joachim jointly. The manifesto was a failure and an embarrassment. It was the premiere of A German Requiem in Bremen, in 1868, that confirmed Brahms's European reputation and led many to accept that he had become heir to Beethoven and the symphony. This may have given him the confidence finally to complete a number of works that he had wrestled with over many years, such as his first string quartet,
third piano quartet, and most notably his first symphony.
In 1890, the 57-year-old Brahms resolved to give up composing. However, as it turned out, he was unable to abide by his decision, and in the years before his death he produced a number of acknowledged masterpieces. such as the Clarinet Trio, Op. 114, Clarinet Quintet, Op. 115 (1891), the two Clarinet Sonatas, Op. 120 (1894) and the visionary cycles of piano pieces, Opp. 116–119.
We celebrate the life and works of the giant of German Romanticism wiith a luminous new recording featuring the composer's first and last compositions, performed by Sophie-Mayuko Vetter.
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