• Richard Strauss

    Tod und Verklärung, Don Juan, Sechs Lieder Op. 68

    Robin Ticciati, Louise Alder, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin

    Tod und Verklärung, Don Juan, Sechs Lieder Op. 68 1 cd CKD640
    Linn Records

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For his fifth recording with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Robin Ticciati conducts a captivating programme of Richard Strauss including Tod und Verklärung and Don Juan. The scandalous story of the insatiable Don Juan forms the inspiration for a tone poem which is rich in imagination and dramatic flourishes. Tod und Verklärung is further testament to Strauss’s vivid imagination; his exploration of the mystery of death and what may follow was written when he was only twenty-five. Ticciati is a consummate Straussian, as his triumphant Rosenkavalier at Glyndebourne demonstrated, and his complete control of phrase shape and dynamics delivers performances of tremendous power and lucidity. Soprano Louise Alder joins Ticciati and the DSO to record what she describes as ‘a fiendish but beloved cycle of Strauss songs’: Sechs Lieder, Op. 68, affectionately known as the Brentano Lieder. Alder won Best Young Singer at the International Opera Awards 2017 and represented England in the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition 2017, winning both the third round and the Dame Joan Sutherland Audience Prize. The recording will be released to coincide with Ticciati’s fourth season as Music Director of the DSO in September 2020.

"Album Choice: Another rewarding Ticciati programme ... Ticciati's probing Don Juan reminded me of the old VPO/Furtwängler LP, whilst Tod eschews sensationalism and has lovely quiet playing."
Hi-Fi News
"Robin Ticciati continues his nigh-unbroken series of remarkable orchestral performances with this latest disc, containing some of his very best work on disc. The Strauss lieder are sensitively sung by Louise Alder."
Classical CD Choice
"4* The early tone poem Don Juan is a perfect starting point. Ticciati's boyish enthusiasm feeds every impetuous moment ... Then it's back to orchestral power play in Tod und Verklärung, and a stirring tour de force from Ticciati."
The Scotsman
"Recommended: ... this is a great disc of Strauss ... If Don Juan glitters then Tod und Verklärung glows ... it's a gorgeous recording."
MusicWeb International
"Explosive Strauss from Berlin, with Louise Alder on glorious form ... The orchestra's exuberant account of Don Juan flows and explodes like lava ... Tod und Verklärung is mysterious, yearning, majestic."
The Observer
"The conductor's care … is especially welcome in the Brentano Lieder, where Alder's light, silvery soprano is allowed to shine without ever sounding pushed."
"The magnificent voice of the soprano Louise Alder joined by Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, conducted by Robin Ticciati. I think you need no greater recommendation for further listening than hearing those wonderful excerpts."
RTÉ Lyric FM ‘Sound Out’
"A very fine performance and one that makes a handsome centerpiece for a fresh and invigorating album. "
"This is a great disc of Strauss, combining two supercharged tone poems with a less well known bouquet of songs. (…) The Linn engineers have done a first rate job in using it to illuminate the sound: every detail, so important in Strauss, is perfectly captured, glittering under the microphone's microscope, and it sets the seal on a highly recommendable release."
MusicWeb International
"When orchestral sonorities and engineering coincide like this, the result in Strauss is thrilling. (…)Robin Ticciati's winged uplift gilds the afterlife beautifully, while there's dynamic restraint and atmosphere around Don Juan's two love episodes, and magical woodwind solos throughout."
BBC Music Magazine
"Robin Ticciati continues his nigh-unbroken series of remarkable orchestral performances with this latest disc, containing some of his very best work on disc. (…)"
Classical CD Choice
"The orchestra's exuberant account of Don Juan flows and explodes like lava, horns soaring, woodwind solos alert and expressive, violin solo sweet and suggestive. In contrasting mood, Tod und Verklärung, Op 24 (1888-9) is mysterious, yearning, majestic, the players and Ticciati equally persuasive. Alder performs the Sechs Lieder, Op 68 (1918) with a mastery of dramatic range. We can only count the days until she is back on stage."
The Guardian
"There is certainly no shortage of recordings of the two big Strauss tone poems included on this release, but the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and conductor Robin Ticciati offer good reasons to add it to one's collection or listening list. "
"(…) this interpretation communicates plenty of vitality, numerous exhilarating episodes and thrilling climaxes, with no shortage of intensity. Unfettered, the music pours forward splendidly, producing a wealth of colour in this incident-packed score. (…) Soprano Louise Alder is worthy of attention for a most praiseworthy performance of the Brentano Lieder."
MusicWeb International
"Alder is something of a specialist in art song, and stylistically she's very appealing."