• Signum Records are proud to present the debut orchestral recording from Grace Davidson, one of the UK’s leading British sopranos specialising in Baroque music. She is joined by some of Europe’s leading Baroque musicians from the Academy of Ancient Music to perform a selection of works by Handel and Vivaldi, with performaces led by violinist Bojan Čičić under artistic director Joseph Crouch.

    Grace won the Early Music Prize while studying singing at London’s Royal Academy of Music. Since then, she has worked with the leading Baroque ensembles of our day, singing under the batons of Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Paul McCreesh, Philippe Herreweghe and Harry Christophers. Her discography includes a decade of CDs with The Sixteen, many of which feature her as soloist – Handel’s Jeptha (as Angel), Dixit Dominus, Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610, Pianto della Madonna, and the Lutheran Masses of Bach.

    Davidson is outstanding for her seraphic purity and evenness of tone - Gramophone The voice is radiantly fresh and clean - The Times Grace Davidson…voice seems to have been especially created to sing baroque musicCross Rhythms Each performance carves out an atmosphere of thoughtful, reflective poise capturing the settings' interior spirit  - Classical Source
  • Following the huge success of their recent album release ‘Timelapse’ (Jan 2021), Orchestra of the. Swan presents Vivaldi Sleep, a project that was initiated by the orchestra during the first national lockdown of 2020. Eleven artists from a broad range of genres – including klezmer, folk, electronica and jazz – were invited to add a solo part in response to the orchestra’s recording of the second movement of Autumn from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Guest artists recorded their solo parts at home and were given free rein to start prior to the orchestra’s recording and continue after it had finished if they wished. Manipulation of the source material was also allowed. Formed in 1995, Orchestra of the Swan is a British chamber orchestra which, under the artistic direction of David Le Page, is passionate about audience inclusivity and blurring the lines between genres through its adventurous and accessible programming. This album demonstrates this ethos exactly.
  • With its vivid poetry and technical ingenuity, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons was ground breaking at the time of its release and to this day remains as influential and transfixing as ever. In this recording, violinist Kati Debretzeni directs the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in an energetic, historically informed performance. From the commanding heat of the Summer sun, to Winter’s foreboding darkness, the power of Vivaldi’s masterpiece is inescapable. The booklet includes a ‘Guided tour of the Four Seasons’, allowing listeners to follow the poetry that inspired Vivaldi as they hear the performances on the disc, including additional composer’s notes from Vivaldi’s own scores. This is a recording of the evergreen Four Seasons to remember and return to. The playing is sublime. Kati Debretzeni is a breath of fresh air at any time of the year. The chamber ensemble from the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, led here by Alison Bury, includes a core of players that has been there from its formation who continue to play with the same joyful camaraderie and artistic precisionGramophone Debretzeni sets out to highlight the descriptive aspect of the music by finding many more colours and contrasts in the orchestral texture than are usually heard, and the period instruments give the familiar movements a new attack, making the work sound as fresh today as the day it was written - Classic FM

    This is probably one of the noteworthy period-instrument 'Seasons' recordingsEarly Music Review

     
  • Walton’s Violin Concerto was composed during a stay at the stunning Villa Cimbrone on Italy's Amalfi coast, and reflects this environment in different ways – some more apparent than others (the 2nd movement is based on a ‘tarantella’, after Walton suffered a tarantula bite whilst there). The piece has endured as one of his most popular works, and is contrasted here by Barber’s Violin Concerto and famous Adagio for Strings. Making his debut recording as a soloist on Signum, Thomas Bowes has built a firm reputation as an orchestral leader, soloist and chamber musician. He has also concert-mastered many film scores – the most recent credit being for "The King's Speech." The Malmö Opera Orchestra and conductor Joseph Swensen join him for this recording. A masterly account … with Bowes essaying flickering rhapsodic moments, assailed by striking orchestral flourishes - The Independent Bowes yields to none of the Walton's great interpreters – Heifetz (the dedicatee), Menuhin, Franccscatti, Chung, Kennedy – in his dazzling passage work … with his gorgeous portamento and rubato - The Times What is so remarkable about Bowes as a soloist is not just his technical assurance, his flawless intonation over the widest range, tonal and dynamic, but his natural feeling for warmly romantic expressiveness … Altogether a resounding success - Gramophone
  • The outstanding British cellist Jamie Walton returns to disc on Signum, accompanied by the Philharmonia Orchestra under Alexander Briger. This disc includes William Walton's 1975 revision to the final movement of the cello concerto, which has never before been recorded or publically performed (as well as a performance of the original final movement).
  • Schubert's 'Wanderer Fantasy' and Schumann's 'Fantasie' are two highly remarkable works: whilst musically embodying the romantic spirit of the age in their unconventional structures and lyrically imaginative styles, they also act as self-portraits to their creators through the evocation of the creative process. In these new orchestrations by Joeseph James, the familiar beauty of the works is rekindled in the exciting and fresh interpretations performed by the illustrious English Chamber Orchestra alongside concertante solos from members of the Schubert Ensemble. The performances are directed by the exceptional young conductor, Orlando Jopling. Featured instrumentalists from the Schubert Ensemble include Simon Blendis (violin), Jane Salmon (cello), Peter Buckoke and Stephen Williams (double basses).
    A magnificent work, extremely convincing, which allows the two greatest piano fantasies of the 19th century to be listened to with a different ear - Abeille Musique
  • O/Modernt, Swedish for ‘Un/Modern’, is the concept devised by violinist Hugo Ticciati that explores vital connections between artistic and intellectual creations, old and new. At the heart of White Light is a dialectic between contemplation and ecstatic joy: a journey that leads within and without. The ensō (Japanese for ‘circle’) drawn by Antony Gormley on the front cover invites us into the prismatic now of listening. ensō: a continuous brushstroke that expresses a moment in time when the mind is released, leaving the body free to listen and create. Looking inwards, we embrace that which we find outside ourselves before finally returning to inner peace and silence. The sound worlds of Arvo Pärt, John Tavener, Pēteris Vasks, The Beatles, and the rhythms and melodies of India are woven together through improvisation to invite a two-way sense of reflection and surprise. The music roams from the weird to the wonderfulCross Rhythms Here it is the combination of material that matters, and I found the programme both seductive and thought provokingPlanet Hugill
  • Lux et Veritas (Light and Truth) is the new album from Will Todd with the professional chamber choir Tenebrae. Todd’s music has a universal appeal and he has been hailed as “one of the UK’s most sought-after, versatile composers” (Tempo Magazine). For this collection of sumptuous new choral works Tenebrae are accompanied by the English Chamber Orchestra, conducted by the choir’s director Nigel Short. This new release follows Will Todd’s last choral album The Call of Wisdom, featuring music commissioned for HRH The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee service in St Paul’s Cathedral in 2012. Throughout, the excellent Tenebrae under Nigel Short's sensitive direction deliver the sequence of 14 short pieces with commitment and great beauty of tone - Choir & Organ One of this year's finest releases - Classic FM Don't miss this movingly accessible and genuinely sensitive choral collection - MusicWeb International Sumptuous, soothing and reflective music for all occasions - Northern Echo
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