The Art of the Prima DonnaFebruary 17, 2022
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From her legendary debut through the succeeding years, Jeanne Demessieux brought virtuosity allied to intellect and sensitivity, and went on to become the glory of the French organ school. This 8-CD celebration of one of the instrument’s most spoken-of, yet enigmatic figures, brings together for the first time her complete Decca recordings and a previously […]
From Adam to Zandonai, from 1954 to 1996, 20 CDs made up of no less than 28 Decca opera recordings, most of them recorded as highlights albums, many long unavailable, newly remastered and all featuring the greatest singers of their age. In bygone years, before 24/7 streaming, recorded music was less readily available than it […]
Sir Adrian Boult’s first Messiah for Decca, newly remastered and coupled with a rare L’Oiseau-Lyre recording of the Bach Magnificat, new to CD. When this Messiah was released in 1954, critics were quick to recognise it as exemplifying the English oratorio tradition at its finest. Boult used a large chorus – the London Philharmonic Choir, […]
Handel orchestral favourites from the 1950s in a winning combination of old-school polish and unaffected stylistic refinement. With this and several other albums, Eloquence celebrates the art of Thurston Dart, the harpsichordist, conductor and editor who played a leading role in the early-music revival in postwar Britain. After his death in 1971 at the […]
Alfred Deller’s only complete recording of a Handel opera. First staged at the King’s Theatre in London in February 1732 and revived two years later, Sosarme was not heard again in full (if not entirely complete) until a BBC broadcast in January 1955, conducted by Anthony Lewis. Conductor and performers then made this recording a […]
Of the works by Handel presented here, three are cantatas devoted to the Patron Saint of music, St. Cecilia, another is an Italian cantata that was probably presented for a private patron in Rome while the remaining two works are drawn from Handel’s unique set of ‘Neun Deutsche Arien’ (Nos. 4 & 6 in the […]
Decca studio recordings made between 1947 and 1949 with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, newly compiled and remastered by Mark Obert-Thorn and including material new to CD. Decca first presented its ‘ffrr’ technology – full frequency range recording – in 1944, originally developed by the company’s engineers as a means of detecting and identifying German submarines […]
A cherishable Mozart soprano of the 1950s and 60s, celebrated with the complete reissue of a Decca recital album, newly remastered. The quality that defined Graziella Sciutti as a singer was lightness – of voice, of bearing and presence on stage. Her vivacious intelligence was no less suited to the Rossini, Bellini and Donizetti roles […]
A trumpet and organ spectacular: three original Argo and DG albums on a generous, newly compiled 2-CD set. In Baroque works generally, the trumpet is always accompanied by drums both of these instruments having strong associations with military music. The organ, on the other hand, is primarily associated with the church and it is within […]
A pioneering Handel recording of the 1950s in a new digital remastering, released on Decca CD for the first time. The scholar and conductor, Anthony Lewis, was one of the early luminaries of the L’Oiseau Lyre label which became, over time, the early-music imprint of Decca. Drawing on his experience of conducting and staging Baroque […]