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ABC Classics

ABC Music is one of Australia’s largest independent music labels and the most highly awarded and critically acclaimed in its key genres.

ABC Music operates under the commercial arm of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, with all profits made going back into funding the great content the ABC is known for.

The roster features many of Australia’s top entertainers including The Audreys, Jeff Lang, Tim Rogers, Ben Salter, Melbourne Ska Orchestra, Mojo Juju , The Snowdroppers, Chris Lilley, Born Lion, Lee Kernaghan, Sara Storer, The Wiggles, Justine Clarke, Giggle and Hoot, Play School, Bananas In Pyjamas and many more.

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Pianist Sally Whitwell returns to the music of minimalist master Philip Glass in her latest album on ABC Classics, presenting a monumental and immersive journey for solo piano.In 2011, Whitwell won the ARIA Award for Best Classical Album for her collection of Glass’ music Mad Rush. Since then, her relationship with the composer has deepened, centring around the Etudes – his largest and most significant work for solo piano. After hearing Mad Rush, in 2013 Glass asked Whitwell to give the world-premiere of the Etudes, alongside the composer, at the Perth International Arts Festival; he subsequently invited her to perform them again in New York and Los Angeles. This album is a result of that close collaboration.The Etudes – 20 in all, collected together into two Books – were written over the course of two decades between 1991 and 2012, and chart the musical development of one of the most significant composers of our generation. ‘In the beginning of the series, we hear something much closer to the angry young man, rebelling against the academic musical establishment by writing and performing his signature repetitive structures that pull you into an unique meditative space (if you let them). By the end of the series we hear a much more peaceful, pragmatic human. Gone is the angry young man, and in its place a kind of lyricism that aches with the wisdom of life experience,’ Whitwell suggests.The music is deeply personal for Whitwell, too, who memorised every note of the ninety-minute set. She recalls the first time playing to Glass, the two of them alone in the room: ‘He listened politely, then gave me a one-man round of applause at the end. “Your playing has real poetry in it,” he said. I remember thinking at that moment “I can now die happy”’.The album was recorded by Tonmeister Virginia Read, who won the ARIA Award for Best Engineer for her previous collaboration with Sally Whitwell.Track Listing:PHILIP GLASS (born 1937)Etudes for Solo PianoCD 1:  Book 1 Etudes Nos. 1–10CD 2: Book 2 Etudes Nos. 11–20Sally Whitwell piano 
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An Alpine Symphony is a work of monumental proportions. Depicting the ascent of an Alpine mountainside, from scenes of pastoral beauty to an enormous storm, it calls for over 120 players and lasts over 50 minutes. It was famously the first-ever work to be pressed onto a compact disc, in a recording by Herbert von Karajan and the Berlin Philharmonic.In reviews of the live concert performances from which this recording is taken, The Australian wrote that ‘the Strauss rose with organic fury under Davis’s baton, Night’s opening rumblings kept as jittery, primordial whispers and so heightening the triumphant burst of Sunrise. The 22 movements trace the journey of an alpine ascent and descent, with dramatic changes of scenery and climate along the way, various perils for the expedition team, and the humility-inducing grandeur of the view from the summit. Alert to each imagery shift and adroitly balancing the vast orchestral forces before him, Davis kept intensity bubbling away, even as textures shifted unpredictably from massed splendour to simple sonorities.’A narrative of a very different kind is found in Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks, this time the misadventures of a German peasant: disrupting a market, chasing girls, mocking professors – and, ultimately, being hanged for his misdemeanours. This work finds the MSO’s musicians at their most virtuosic, with many of the players called on to depict the vivid characters we encounter in the story.The MSO’s Strauss series was launched in 2014 with a major European tour including the BBC Proms and Concertgebouw, and has so far included Four Last Songs with Erin Wall, Ein Heldenleben, Four Symphonic Interludes, Also Sprach Zarathustra and Don Juan. The recordings have won significant acclaim from the international press, with BBC Music Magazine describing Also Sprach as ‘a benchmark recording’.1. Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche (Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks), Op. 282–23. Eine Alpensinfonie (An Alpine Symphony), Op. 64Melbourne Symphony OrchestraDale Barltrop concertmasterSir Andrew Davis conductorRecorded live in Hamer Hall, Arts Centre Melbourne
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It was common practice in the 19th century for composer to publish their music in versions for multiple instruments, increasing their audience and appeal. Taking inspiration from this, Benedict and Tedeschi present a range of works ideally suited to the rich tone of the viola – the ‘melancholy dreamer’, as Berlioz described it.The album opens with Schubert’s Arpeggione Sonata, written for a now-obsolete six-string instrument. The sunny virtuosity of the music (increased by playing it on an instrument of four rather than six strings) is tempered by Schubert’s trademark aching melancholy.At the heart of the album sits a suite of movements from Schubert’s Winterreise. In Benedict’s own words, “this concert suite tells a condensed version of the song cycle’s story, expressing all the desperation, false hope and final resignation as its protagonist journeys away from his doomed love affair.”Two works by Robert Schumann, originally for violin and piano, close out the album: an ardent and wistful Intermezzo, and the characterful late Sonata Op.105.In his 20s, Roger Benedict was appointed the principal viola of the Philharmonia Orchestra in London, before leaving to devote more time to solo performance and teaching. He relocated to Australia in 2003, and is the principal viola of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Simon Tedeschi has been hailed as ‘true greatness’ (Sydney Morning Herald). He tours and performs globally at prestigious recital venues and with leading orchestras; for ABC Classics he has made acclaimed recordings of music by Gershwin, Mussorgsky, Richard Strauss and more.The artwork for the album cover and booklet is by Loribelle Spirovski, a Sydney-based Archibald finalist.  Track ListingFRANZ SCHUBERT 1797–18181–3. Sonata in A minor, D821 ‘Arpeggione’ for viola and pianoEight Songs from ‘Winterreise’Arranged for viola and piano by Roger Benedict4. Gute Nacht (Good Night)5. Erstarrung (Numbness)6. Auf dem Flusse (On the Stream)7. Irrlicht (Will-o’-the-Wisp)8. Frühlingstraum (A Dream of Springtime)9. Stürmischer Morgen (Stormy Morning)10. Täuschung (Deception)11. Der Wegweiser (The Signpost) ROBERT SCHUMANN 1810–185612. Intermezzo [from the F.A.E. Sonata] for violin and piano, WoO22Arranged for viola and piano by Roger Benedict 13–15. Sonata for piano and violin in A minor, Op. 105Arranged for viola and piano by Roger Benedict Roger Benedict violaSimon Tedeschi piano
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From the creator of Swoon comes an enthralling introduction to the great love music of the classical composers. Experience music from 10 composers, from the passionate arias of Puccini and Mozart to the intimacy of Satie’s Gymnopedies and Chopin’s Nocturnes, and the extraordinary orchestral colours of Schumann, Debussy and Brahms. This is music at its most eloquent, written to seduce, to capture the ineffable highs and – perhaps most often – to overcome the excruciating blows of love. As Lawrence himself puts it, ‘the sounds of these composers are a poignant counterpoint to the tales of their stuttering dreams. Therein lie the real truths of these lives – and ours. For when it comes to putting a little love into your day, classical music does the best job of all.’This 2-CD set accompanies the major new book Symphony of Seduction by ABC Classic FM’s Christopher Lawrence.
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Emma Matthews is one of the brightest stars in the antipodean operatic skies. Her voice is pure yet rich, capable of dazzling vocal fireworks but equally able to express the subtlest of moods.In this her debut release on the ABC Classics label, she brings the thrilling beauty of her tone to jewels by Donizetti, Bellini, Gounod, Delibes and Offenbach, taking on some of the iconic soprano roles and proving herself to be a worthy interpreter of the grand tradition.Track Listing1. BERNSTEIN Glitter and Be Gay from Candide2. DELIBES Où va la jeune Hindoue (Bell Song) from Lakmé3. FLOTOW The Last Rose of Summer from Martha4. DONIZETTI Ancor non giunse…Regnava nel silencio…Quando rapito in estasi from Lucia di Lammermoor (with Catherine Carby mezzo-soprano)5. BELLINI Eccomi in lieta vesta…Oh! quante volte from I Capuleti e i Montecchi6. GOUNOD Dieu! Quel frisson court dans mes veines…Amour, ranime mon courage from Roméo et Juliette7. THOMAS A vos jeux…Partagez-vous mes fleurs…Pâle et blonde…La sirène passe et vous entraîne from Hamlet8. OFFENBACH Les oiseaux dans la charmille (Doll Song) from Les Contes d’Hoffmann9. PROCH Deh! torna, mio bene (Theme and Variations)10. BOWMAN Now Touch the Air Softly11. MILLS The Nightingale’s Song from The Love of the Nightingale
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This live recording from the Uptown Jazz Café captures Fitzgibbon at his best, performing a selection of original compositions with regular partners Marty Holoubek on bass and Danny Fischer on drums. 
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ABC Classics presents The Beauty of Beethoven, a 4CD celebration of the iconic composer's most exquisite masterworks. As well as beloved music including the Moonlight Sonata, Pastoral Symphony and Emperor Concerto, this album also shines light on lesser-known works from across Beethoven's oeuvre, including little-heard string quartets, piano trios and songs.This is music that changed the world with the power of its beauty: over five hours of masterpieces that will astonish, inspire and enthrall.In December, ABC Classic FM celebrates Beethoven's birthday weekend with two days dedicated to his music.Track Listing:CD 1:1. Pastoral Symphony No. 6: I. Allegro ma non troppo2. String Quartet No. 15 in A minor: III. Molto adagio3. Piano Trio in G major: III. Scherzo4. Bagatelle in C major, Op. 33 No. 55. Waldstein Piano Sonata No. 21: II. Introduzione6. Razumovsky String Quartet No. 1 in F major: II. Allegretto vivace e sempre scherzando7. Spring Violin Sonata: II. Adagio molto espressivo8. Fidelio: Prisoners Chorus9. Leonore Overture No. 3CD 2:1. Für Elise2. Symphony No. 7: II. Allegretto3. Octet in E-flat major: II. Andante4. String Quartet No. 2 in G major: IV. Allegro molto quasi presto5. Piano Sonata No. 32: II. Arietta6. Diabelli Variations (Selections)7. Razumovsky String Quartet No. 3 in C major: II. Andante con moto quasi allegretto8. Violin Concerto: II. Larghetto9. Symphony No. 2: II. LarghettoCD 3:1. Eroica Symphony No. 3: I. Allegro con brio2. Moonlight Sonata: I. Adagio sostenuto3. Symphony No. 5: II. Andante con moto4. Pathétique Piano Sonata No. 8: II. Adagio cantabile5. Missa solemnis: Sanctus6. Ghost Piano Trio in D major: II. Largo assai ed espressivo7. Symphony No. 9: II. Molto vivaceCD 4:1. Symphony No. 8: I. Allegro vivace e con brio2. With a Painted Ribbon3. Sonata in F major for cor anglais: I. Allegro moderato4. String Quartet No. 13 in B-flat major: V. Cavatina5. Piano Concerto No. 4: I. Allegro moderato6. String Quartet No. 5 in A major: III. Andante cantabile7. Archduke Piano Trio in B-flat major: I. Allegro moderato8. Emperor Piano Concerto No. 5: II. Adagio un poco moto 
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The Australian Haydn Ensemble, acclaimed for their fresh and vibrant performances of the music of the Classical era, bring their deep knowledge of historical performance techniques to Beethoven’s first and third piano concertos to play them as they would have been first encountered by audiences of Beethoven’s own time: as chamber music, for a small ensemble that could comfortably fit into a private home. In an era without recordings, most music lovers discovered the works of the great composers not by hearing them, but by playing them. These arrangements by Australian scholar Vi King Lim are patterned on the hugely popular chamber editions of Beethoven and Mozart symphonies by London-dwelling Italians Cimador and Masi, which graced the libraries of every music-loving household at the turn of the 19th century.Neal Peres Da Costa performs on a meticulously crafted replica of an 1819 fortepiano by Conrad Graf – maker of one of Beethoven’s own pianos.
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Here the Melbourne-based composer turns her versatile creative talent to the instruments of the brass family, with a soulful and charismatic disc featuring leading Australian artists Don Immel (trombone) and Joel Brennan (trumpet), as well as the dynamic line up of Ensemble Three (Immel, Brennan and guitarist Ken Murray).
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In March 2017, the musical world came together to mourn the death of Danny Spooner, a man whose passion for expressing culture through music had touched the lives of millions and seen him declared a living national treasure. ACO Artistic Director Richard Tognetti, hearing earlier of his terminal illness, had simply written – in a private note – “Bless his genius”.Now the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Tognetti honour this extraordinary musician with a live recording from their collaboration with Spooner in 2007. The recording – which hasn’t been heard for a decade – was made when they toured Australia with fiddler Mike Kerin, bringing to life a range of folk songs: differing in mood, but all sharing ear-catching tunes, characteristic dance rhythms and a marvellous sense of vitality. The concert looked back to the folk music of rural Britain – from where Spooner hails – with the Hebridean Call of the Seals and the northern miners’ tune Byker Hill, but also celebrates the rich folk history of Australia, with works by West Australia’s Roy Abbott (And When They Dance) and Queenslander Bill Scott (Hey Rain).Born in London’s East End, Danny Spooner left school at age 13 and began learning British folksongs while working on barges along the Thames and the English south coast. Since arriving in Australia in 1962, his astonishingly vast repertoire of folk music expanded and was performed in folk clubs, festivals and workshops in Australia, New Zealand, Britain and the US. He memorised over 5000 folksongs.Fiddler Mike Kerin is known to Australian lovers of country music as a consummate musician, a vocalist and player of fiddle, guitar and mandolin. Since 1978 he has been a quiet driving force in country music through his performances and recordings with Gaelforce, the Flying Emus, the Travelling Country Band, Slim Dusty and the WheelerDealers, alongside countless other.
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Legendary Grammy award-winning vocalist Patti Austin and Australian trumpet maestro James Morrison come together to relive the timeless hits of Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong in their new album on ABC Jazz.Track ListingCD1Hello, Dolly!(Up A) Lazy RiverToo Close for ComfortLet’s Do It (Let’s Fall in Love)(If You Can’t Sing It) You’ll Have to Swing It (Mr Paganini)Our Love is Here to StayA Tisket, A TasketSatin DollLullaby of BirdlandCD2Basin Street BluesMiss Otis RegrestHard-Hearted Hannah (The Vamp of Savannah)Honeysuckle RoseI’ve Got The World on a StringStruttin’ With Some BBQBut Not For MeMack the KnifeHow High the MoonGet Happy
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DELUXE 5CD BOX SETBach Cello Suites, Air on the G String, Brandenburg Concertos, Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring; Beethoven Ode to Joy, Moonlight Sonata, Für Elise and Symphony No.5; Elgar Nimrod and Pomp and Circumstance March; Grieg In the Hall of the Mountain King and Morning Mood; Mozart Eine kleine Nachtmusik, Clarinet Concerto and Requiem; Tchaikovsky 1812 Overture, Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake and The Sleeping Beauty; Vaughan Williams The Lark Ascending and Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis; Vivaldi Gloria and The Four Seasons…This list names less than a quarter of the pieces featured on this new collection!101 Classical brings together over a hundred classical favourites on five CDs, giving an indispensable overview of the extraordinary world of classical music. With over 60 composers featured, this album presents the rich majesty of the orchestra, the smooth delicacy of solo piano, rousing choruses, elegant dances and dazzling concertos.Stretching back over 500 years of classical masterpieces, 101 Classical is the collection that proves why this music has proved so popular for so long: quite simply, it’s irresistibly good!