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March 2010 Classical Music Highlights

March 1-5

Gabriel Dupont: Complete Works for Solo Piano (Saphir LVC 1097), performed by Émile Naoumoff, piano

French composer Gabriel Dupont began his study at the Paris Conservatory at age 15 under the tutelage of Massenet and Widor. Over the course of his brief life (he died at age 36), he penned three operas, chamber music, and these two dozen pieces for solo piano.

March 8-12

Fasch: Overture, Sinfonias & Concerti (Phoenix Edition 191), performed by Cappella Coloniensis

The Cappella Coloniensis was founded by West German Radio in Cologne in 1954 to introduce historically-informed performances of Baroque music to the public. Since then, the ensemble has worked with such renowned conductors as William Christie and John Eliot Gardiner, and has performed music from a wide range of composers and periods. Here Cappella Coloniensis presents a selection of works by Baroque composer Johann Friedrich Fasch.

March 15-19

Carolan's Harp (Deutsche Harmonia Mundi), performed by The Harp Consort, directed by Andrew Lawrence-King

Turlough Carolan was an itinerant early Irish harper, composer, and singer. Blinded by smallpox at the age of eighteen, Carolan's fame is due to his gift for melodic composition; he was the last great Irish harper-composer. The harp is the central focus of this CD, but with the addition of baroque instrumentation, it becomes an album for all music lovers.

March 22-26

A Company of Voices: Conspirare in Concert (Harminia Mundi HMU 907534), performed by Conspirare, directed by Craig Hella Johnson

This live concert recording showcases one of the world's premier vocal ensembles and demonstrates director Craig Hella Johnson's gift for eclectic programming. He manages to successfully juxtapose works by Lauridsen and Gibbons with arrangements of songs by Carly Simon and Annie Lennox.

March 29-April 2

Bach: The Six Trio Sonatas (Sony Legacy), performed by E. Power Biggs, harpsichord.

E. Power Biggs' recording of Bach's six Trio Sonatas has been re-released. Recorded by Biggs in 1966, the performances have long been a staple of the CBS/Sony discography. These six sonatas are usually performed on organ, but they accommodate the pedal harpsichord quite well. Generally thought of as a practice instrument for organists, the pedal harpsichord becomes an ideal performing tool with E. Power Biggs at the helm.

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