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Tag: Magdalena Kozena

Berliner Philharmoniker – Simon Rattle and Magdalena Kozena with songs by Dvorak and Mahler 2012 720p WEB-DL AAC2.0 H.264-CHDWEB

Delicate melancholy in various forms characterises this concert with the Berliner Philharmoniker and Sir Simon Rattle. In addition to orchestral works by Ravel and Schubert, this concert includes late songs by Dvořák and Mahler. The soloist is the internationally acclaimed mezzo-soprano Magdalena Kožená, who has been married to Simon Rattle since 2008.

The songs in the programme come from composers who are usually associated with more extrovert sonorities, but who, in this case, find the greatest intensity of expression through concentration and restraint. Thus, the driving force in Antonín Dvořák’s Biblical Songs is not so much the folkloric verve of earlier vocal works as the intimate immersion in the psalm texts which underlie the songs. Also in Mahler’s Rückert Lieder, we are confronted not by the creator of gigantic symphonies, but by the sensitive philosopher, who – as it says in one of the songs – “is lost to the world.”

The concert opens with Maurice Ravel’s Le Tombeau de Couperin, which was written in memory of the composer’s fallen war comrades. As the title suggests, the work also pays homage to François Couperin (1668–1733), explaining the interesting mixture of mourning with Baroque grace. Franz Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony stands in contrast to such controlled expression. The shrouded mood portrayed in the opening bars soon turns into unbridled despair. While there are moments of rebellion and lightening of mood, the world-weariness of this music is all the more intense when set against this background.

Some special features are worth noting regarding this concert: First, that the live broadcast on 27 January 2012 was not only shown in the Digital Concert Hall, but also in more than 100 cinemas all over Europe. For the cinema relay, the services of the orchestra’s horn player Klaus Wallendorf were secured to present the concert live from behind the scenes. His informative and humorous remarks are also included in this recording. As an added extra, there are two bonuses by Luciano Berio and Maurice Ravel, recorded at concerts on 25 and 26 January, which were performed as part of a change of programme. The concert opened with Berio’s Ritorno degli snovidenia (“The return of dreams”) for solo cello and chamber orchestra – a musical treatment of the destruction of revolutionary ideals during Stalinism. The solo part, composed for Mstislav Rostropovich, is played in our recording by Olaf Maninger, principal cellist of the Berliner Philharmoniker. He is accompanied by students of the Orchester-Akademie of the Berliner Philharmoniker. The second item is Ravel’s magical, exotic song cycle Shéhérazade, sung by Magdalena Kožená.

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Magdalena Kozena – Soiree (2019) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Magdalena Kožená – Soirée (2019)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 01:13:07 minutes | 1,22 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © PentaTone

This is an album fit to satisfy the most refined and demanding gourmets. Magdalena Kožená and friends, including husband Sir Simon Rattle on the piano, have carefully concocted a programme of choice melodies for voice and various instrumental ensembles. Ranging from rarities (Chanson perpétuelle by Ernest Chausson opens the album) to curiosities (Arias by Dvořák, the wonderful Two Songs, Op.91 by Brahms with a bewitching solo viola played by Yulia Deyneka), the record takes in a series of treats (childish rhymes, Říkadla, by Leoš Janáček) and also affords us the precious Chansons madécasses by Ravel, an unusually lascivious and sensual denunciation of slavery and colonialism, and the very rare Three Songs from William Shakespeare, written in 1953 by a Stravinsky who had been converted to hardcore serialism by his friend Robert Craft. The excellent English soloists accompanying Magdalena Kožená show a little humour by ending this Soirée at the first rays of morning, with a transcription of Morgen by Richard Strauss for mezzo-soprano, violin and piano. English humour, for sure. – François Hudry

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Magdalena Kozena – Il giardino dei sospiri (2019) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Magdalena Kožená – Il giardino dei sospiri (2019)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 01:24:56 minutes | 1,5 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © PentaTone

On her first album under the label PentaTone, Czech mezzo-soprano Magdalena Kožená returns to her first baroque loves, collaborating with her fellow countryman Václav Luks and his excellent Prague ensemble. Both a harpsichordist and a horn player, Václav Luks studied at Basel Schola Cantorum before founding the choir Collegium Vocale 1704 in 2005, made up of ninety Czech singers and musicians.

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Magdalena Kozena, Stuart Skelton, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra & Sir Simon Rattle – Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde (Live) (2018) [Official Digital Download 24bit/48kHz]

Magdalena Kožená, Stuart Skelton, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra & Simon Rattle – Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde (Live) (2018)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/48 kHz | Time – 01:04:08 minutes | 621 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © BR-Klassik

Conducted by Sir Simon Rattle, this performance of Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde (The Song of the Earth) was recorded at concerts in Munich’s Herkulessaal on January 25 and 26, 2018, and features Magdalena Kožená and Stuart Skelton. The work is subtitled ‘A symphony for tenor, alto (or baritone) voice and orchestra’. It examines the border between two different genres: the Lied, in its extended form as a song cycle, and the symphony. The entire work is spanned by a taut arc, culminating – in accordance with the principle of intensification – in a huge final movement lasting as long as all the others together, and entitled Der Abschied (The Farewell). Here, Mahler is continuing the genre of the ‘Finale Symphony’, and the brightening of C minor to C major is even reminiscent of his usual apotheoses. In this symphony, as in his others, Mahler wanted to ‘create a world using all existing technical means’.

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