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“There’s something here for every fan”
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The 300 greatest classical pieces of all time in one book Packed with stories behind each of the works and composers
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The Classic FM Hall Of Fame (ISBN 9781907642173) is available from Waterstones.com at £15 (RRP £25.00) for a limited time only. All prices on Waterstones.com are online only and may differ from Waterstone’s stores. Free delivery on second class post in the UK only. A R T S
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THIS MONTH’S CONTRIBUTORS
Founded in 1923 by Sir Compton Mackenzie and Christopher Stone as ‘an organ of candid opinion for the numerous possessors of gramophones’
Celebrating today’s most inspiring concert halls As an architecture critic, PHILIP KENNICOTT spends a lot of time looking at building types that don’t improve over time. The concert hall, which he surveys for this month’s Gramophone, is a happy exception to this tale of decline. ‘We may be in a golden age of new concert halls,’ he says, ‘and how often do you hear a critic say something like that?’
Gramophone may be a magazine of recorded music but I hope you’ll excuse and enjoy our celebration of concert halls in this issue. Aside from the fact that many, or most, collectors of classical music recordings will also be regular concert-goers, the auditorium is where orchestras develop a rapport with their music director, with each other and with audiences. It’s also where an increasing proportion of today’s new releases,
DAVID PATRICK STEARNS is a critic for the Philadelphia Inquirer, author of the artsjournal.com blog ‘Condemned to Music’ and a contributor to The Guardian and Opera News. He came away from his Gramophone Collection survey of Bartók’s Duke Bluebeard’s Castle speaking only in French Symbolist aphorisms, even when discussing the weather.
captured during live performances, originate. And as buildings, they can impress and inspire aesthetically and make a bold public statement about the role of music in society today – whether taking pride of place in a prestigious city-centre location or as the public beacon of an urban renewal project. Not all halls built in the past century were considered great successes but many of those from the past decade have been rightly acclaimed, capturing the imagination. In the best examples, architects, acousticians and musicians have thought hard about what a concert hall should look like, sound like, and how it should relate to the community around it. We celebrate 10 of the most inspiring and dramatic examples.
Most of us can recall, at some point in our lives, unexpectedly encountering a particular composer’s music and finding it resonating with us profoundly. For Rob Cowan, as a 14-year-old, it was Bartók:
‘Architects, acousticians and musicians have thought hard about what a concert hall should look like, sound like, and how it should relate to the community around it’
admired has over for music Berkeley’s Lennox
PETER DICKINSON has admired Lennox Berkeley’s music for over 50 years and has presented it in concerts, broadcasts and books – a new one coming out next year. Revisiting Berkeley’s work in the 1940s for this month’s Specialist’s Guide confirmed it was a golden decade, not just for the composer but for British music in general.
he was gripped, challenged, enthralled by the Hungarian master’s dark and innovative music and it has continued to prove a lifelong journey, the milestones of which he shares with us in this month’s cover story. Meanwhile, in The Gramophone Collection, David Patrick Stearns explores the recordings of Bartók’s sole opera, Duke Bluebeard’s Castle, completed a century ago, and recommends his favourites.
to you welcome to joy a is it Finally,
a after editor, as role new my in time first the for
Finally, it is a joy to welcome you to Gramophone for the first time in my new role as editor, after a decade in various posts with the magazine. To hold such a position – proud as I am of both the title’s hold To magazine. the with posts various in decade title’s the both of am I as proud – position a such great heritage and of its committed, expert expert committed, its of and heritage great writers today – is a great privilege. My thanks to my predecessor James Inverne; and as the months progress, I hope many of you will contact me with feedback and ideas.
FOR THE FULL LIST OF GRAMOPHONE REVIEWERS TURN TO PAGE 39
GRAMOPHONE JANUARY 2012 3