The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music: Here is New Yorker magazine critic Alex Ross’ list of the Top 10 classical recordings, books and movie scores of 2012.

December 28, 2012
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By Jacob Stockinger

Alex Ross (below) of The New Yorker magazine is perhaps the best-known and most highly respected classical music critic in the US, rivaled only by Anthony Tommasini of The New York Times.

Ross, who has won major awards for his books “The Rest Is Noise” and “Listen to This,” writes a great blog and is regularly featured in the New Yorker magazine.

Alex Ross 2

Here is a link to his enjoyable and informative blog:

http://www.therestisnoise.com

In the New Yorker, as he usually does, Ross recently listed his top 10 recordings – along with a top book and a top video – of 2012 along with his Top 10 Live Performances. Although he is a strong advocate for new music, Ross also lists a generous share of new recordings of Josqjin, Bach, Handel, Vivaldi, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, SchubertWagner  and other “standard” classical composers. And perhaps even more surprisingly, his choice of Bach is a “Saint Matthew Passion” performed NOT by an early music group but by the venerable Berlin Philharmonic under the baton of Sir Simon Rattle and bad-boy avant-garde director Peter Sellars (a clip is at the at bottom).

Ross’ list also includes some audio sampling or excerpts of his various selections, including royal queenly arias sung by Joyce DiDonato.

As we come into another post-holiday weekend, when you might want to use the gift cards or cash you received for the holidays, it seemed like a good list to add Ross’ list to my other holiday gift guides.

So here is a link to Ross choices:

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/culture/2012/11/ten-notable-classical-music-recordings-of-2012.html

jeremy denk ligeti-beethoven CD

The First Four Notes coverAnd here are the other gift guides I have listed on this blog in the past month. They range from the Classical music nominations for the Grammys to best pick by critics of the New York Times.

Here are links to those postings:

https://welltempered.wordpress.com/2012/12/08/classical-music-the-classical-music-nominations-for-the-2013-grammy-awards-can-provide-a-helpful-holiday-gift-shopping-guide-part-1-of-2-plus-the-uw-russian-folk-orchestra-and-madison-handbells-pe/

https://welltempered.wordpress.com/2012/12/09/classical-music-the-classical-music-nominations-for-the-2013-grammy-awards-can-provide-a-helpful-holiday-gift-shopping-guide-part-2-of-2/

Grammy

https://welltempered.wordpress.com/2012/12/16/classical-music-here-is-part-2-of-the-ears-holiday-gift-giving-guide-featuring-nprs-top-10-classical-recordings-of-2012/

https://welltempered.wordpress.com/2012/12/19/classical-music-here-is-part-4-of-the-ears-holiday-gift-giving-guides-to-classical-music-compliments-of-the-new-york-times/

https://welltempered.wordpress.com/2012/12/26/classical-music-got-a-holiday-gift-card-or-christmas-cash-to-spend-here-are-the-choice-picks-of-classical-music-in-2012-with-an-emphasis-on-new-artists-niche-labels-and-smaller-name-perfo/

(Below is a collage by photographer Tony Cenicola of the New York Times of favorite recordings of 2012 as picked by critics for The New York Times.)

NY Tmes best of 2012 1 Tony Cenicola

Please leave your own suggestions n the COMMENTS section, especially by genre (chamber music, opera, symphony, solo piano) and by artist plus composer and work. It would also be good to know to know why you like it and why you recommend it.

The Ear wants to hear.


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