Eastertide Evensong from St John’s College, Cambridge

Does the release of a second live evensong album from this celebrated choir reflect a growing interest in the music and ritual within our great cathedrals and collegiate chapels? Whatever…

Mixed performances in Menotti and Weir from the Guildhall School of Music & Drama

In food terms this was a programme comprising starter and main course, a well-designed menu beginning with a romantic comedy and followed by a picaresque meditation on fate with much…

Covent Garden’s ‘Heart of Darkness’ Rigoletto

In his first production since taking up his appointment as Director of Opera in 2017,Oliver Mears’s thought-provoking staging clearly acknowledges Rigoletto as a timeless classic.  His presentation debuted in September…

As the leaves fall: impressive new choral disc from Guildford Cathedral Choir

The music of Harold Darke and Maurice Duruflé might seem curious bedfellows on this recent disc from Guildford Cathedral Choir, with girls’ and men’s voices, issued by Regent.  Yet both these relatively…

Varied performances from the London Handel Players at the Wigmore Hall

Loss and celebration were the themes embedded in a programme comprising two secular cantatas from J.S. Bach’s Leipzig years, and a single aria attributed to him but now believed to…

Mesmerising performances from the LSO and Noseda at the Barbican

‘He liked to think that he wasn’t afraid of death.  It was life he was afraid of, not death.  He believed that people should think about death more often, and…

Le nozze di Figaro at the Royal Opera House

As an exploration of 18th-century class structures Le nozze di Figaro is a timeless classic which no number of revivals will diminish.  With its thumb-nosing at society’s upper echelons, it’s no…

Singing of surpassing beauty from The Dunedin Consort: Ich habe genug

Here’s a disc of outstanding solo performances from the Dunedin Consort of three of J.S. Bach’s finest cantatas.  John Butt’s musicians have already garnered considerable critical acclaim, and two of…

Gallic elegance from Les Arts Florissants in Charpentier’s Un Oratorio de Noël

Originally issued almost forty years ago, this re-release reminds us of the ease and certainty with which William Christie navigates his way through uncharted French Baroque territory at a time…

Kirill Karabits conducts the LSO in mixed performances at the Barbican

Dedicated to the memory of Bernard Haitink, this Barbican concert with the London Symphony Orchestra could have been stymied by cancellations of conductor and soloist.  But Ukrainian-born Kirill Karabits (more…