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November highlights from EMI and Virgin Classics

Spotlight release

Homage to Maria Callas Angela Gheorghiu The defining diva of this century performs a programme of beloved French and Italian arias inspired by the career and recordings of Maria Callas, the great diva of the last century. The CD features arias strongly identified with Callas’s repertoire from La bohème, Faust, Il pirata, Adriana Lecouvreur, Andrea Chénier, I Pagliacci, La Wally, Medea, Le Cid and Samson et Delilah, as well as two arias from La traviata, the opera that launched Gheorghiu’s career in 1994. At the time, New York Magazine wrote, “Her lady of the camellias is a worthy successor to Garbo and Callas.” The deluxe edition comprises a CD encased in a hardcover book containing an essay from Angela, a gallery of glamorous new photos and exclusive access to a video and mini-feature on the making of the CD.

Also new this month

Mahler Symphony No. 6 Antonio Pappano Mahler’s Symphony No. 6 is brought vividly to life in a live concert recording by Antonio Pappano and the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia to commemorate the composer’s double anniversary.

Liszt Lieder Diana Damrau After her sumptuous album of orchestral lieder by Richard Strauss, soprano Diana Damrau marks the bicentenary of Liszt’s birth with a programme of his most celebrated songs in German, French and Italian, accompanied by pianist Helmut Deutsch.

The Flute King Emmanuel Pahud Pahud performs works composed for and by King Frederick the Great of Prussia, flautist, composer and patron of the arts, whose 300th birthday is commemorated in 2012. Joining Pahud are the Kammerakademie Potsdam and Trevor Pinnock.

Duetti Philippe Jaroussky, Max Emanuel Cencic The contrasting and complementary talents of two star countertenors come to the fore in a programme of duets and arias by Italian composers of the early 18th century, performed with Les Arts Florissants under William Christie.

The Renaissance of Italian Music Works from composers central to the musical developments of the Italian Renaissance, from Palestrina to Monteverdi, complemented by an exploration of some of The National Gallery’s most significant paintings from the same period.

The Christmas Album Libera This long-awaited Christmas album from the distinctive boys choir features a mixture of secular and sacred Christmas favourites. Libera’s harmonies set to shimmering, mystical chords are “celestial sounds for the modern age”.

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