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Recommended recordings Mar 2013: New releases in the ROH Shop

March sees Written on Skin, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Jonas Kaufmann's Wagner album released.

By Robert Perry (Retail Manager)

8 March 2013 at 5.36pm | 1 Comment

George Benjamin – Written on Skin (Nimbus)

George Benjamin’s new opera Written on Skin has appeared on CD just in time for its UK premiere with The Royal Opera. Recorded in performance at the Aix en Provence Festival last year, the cast features Christopher Purves as the duped Protector, Barbara Hannigan’s achingly sung Agnès and the remarkable counter-tenor Bejun Mehta spinning vocal magic as The Boy. Shorn of Katie Mitchell’s fascinating staging, the opera works equally well as an audio experience, with Benjamin’s terse and lucid orchestration ever fascinating. Unusually the set includes a full libretto in English, and has Benjamin’s Duet for Piano and Orchestra as a bonus track.  Nimbus have released this double disc at single price – and it’s worth every penny.

Jonas Kaufmann – Wagner (Decca)

Will there be a more important artist recital to emerge this year than Jonas Kaufmann’s new all-Wagner disc?  It has ‘award winner’ writ large on it, and deservedly so. Kaufmann is known in London chiefly in the Italian repertory, but his emergence as a Wagnerian force of nature is very evident in this disc. It’s hard to pick a favourite track as all are in some way exceptional, but he captures the introspection of Lohengrin as exquisitely as he is thrilling as Siegmund. And if you thought the Wesendonck-Lieder were soprano or mezzo territory, think again: Kaufman records them here and instantly claims them as his own. A thrilling recital then, and one for our times.

Joby Talbot – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland suite/Fool’s Paradise

Joby Talbot has prepared a suite from his ballet Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, handily released in time for the new season of the ballet. Highlights are skilfully woven together, and the suite is coupled with the complete music for Fool’s Paradise. The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra plays it all superbly, and it makes for a wonderful reminder of some great nights with The Royal Ballet.

See more releases available from the Royal Opera House Shop.

By Robert Perry (Retail Manager)

8 March 2013 at 5.36pm

This article has been categorised Off stage and tagged album, by George Benjamin, CD, Joby Talbot, Jonas Kaufmann, Production, releases, Shop, Written on Skin

This article has 1 comment

  1. Kaufmann's Wagner album is outstanding ...and I'm not even a huge Wagner fan but I just found his singing sublime. Come on ROH, invite Jonas to do some Wagner in London - I'd come and watch!

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