Archiv Produktion

Deutsche Grammophon reaffirms its commitment to Early Music

It was exactly a year ago that Deutsche Grammophon revealed new plans and signings for Archiv Produktion. Today the world’s foremost classical record company reaffirmed its commitment to Early Music. Says Ute Fesquet, Vice President Artist & Repertoire of Deutsche Grammophon: “It gives us deep satisfaction to announce a host of exciting albums scheduled for imminent release on Archiv. We look forward to spreading the spirit of our Silver Label to an ever-widening audience through these new interpretations of Baroque and Renaissance masterpieces by outstanding Early Music exponents.”

Making his Archiv opera debut, celebrated Handelian René Jacobs, “the most exciting opera conductor of the day” (Münchner Merkur), leads the dynamic, exquisitely honed B’Rock Orchestra and an outstanding cast in Orlando,one of Handel’s most ravishingly beautiful creations. The fantastic title role, written for the legendary Senesino, is sung by its finest modern exponent, Bejun Mehta, “one of the most commanding, exhilarating countertenors of the modern era” (The New York Times). Archiv’s first recording of Orlando will be released in May.

Pablo Heras-Casado, “one of the most exciting conductors of his generation” (Die Welt), makes his Archiv debut with El Maestro Farinelli, an album of music performed by another legendary 18th-century castrato, and one who served as court musician to the kings of Spain. Featuring the superb period-instrument ensemble Concerto Köln, Heras-Casado’s selection includes “Alto Giove” by Porpora, one of the finest arias composed for Farinelli, it too sung in this May 2014 release by Bejun Mehta.

To be released in June 2014: From Spain to Eternity, a major recording by Ensemble Plus Ultra, whose hugely ambitious 10-CD anthology on Archiv Produktion commemorating the 400th anniversary of Tomás Luis de Victoria’s death won a Gramophone award in 2012. Their new project marks the 400th anniversary of El Greco’s death with sacred choral music by Morales, Lobo and Tejeda, three outstanding composers who flourished in Toledo when the artist lived and worked there.

A spectacular rediscovery will be released on Archiv Produktion in October 2014. La concordia de’ pianeti (The Harmony of the Planets) was created by influential Baroque opera composer Antonio Caldara in 1723 for the Austrian empress’s lavish name-day celebrations. The remarkable piece then languished for nearly three centuries. On 18 January 2014, Andrea Marcon – having painstakingly reconstructed it together with musicologist Bernardo Ticci – gave the first modern performance, conducting Baroque orchestra La Cetra. His brilliant cast is headed by countertenor Franco Fagioli as Apollo – the breathtakingly virtuosic role sung in 1723 by another great castrato, Carestini – alongside tenor Daniel Behle and soprano Verónica Cangemi, among others.

Archiv Produktion’s fifth exciting addition to the catalogue in 2014 will appear in November. Having already made a classic set of Bach’s Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord and performed the Brandenburg Concertos with Claudio Abbado, Giuliano Carmignola – one of today’s finest interpreters of the Baroque violin repertoire – has now recorded the two Violin Concertos and the Double Violin Concerto with Concerto Köln. A new benchmark is promised.

Finally a peek into Archiv’s future: look out for further concertos, opera, oratorio and much more from artists of the calibre of Pablo Heras-Casado, Magdalena Kožená, Andrea Marcon and Anna Prohaska. And that’s only the beginning. Watch this space for updates.

Archiv Produktion Releases:

G. F. HANDEL: Orlando
Bejun Mehta · B'Rock Orchestra · René Jacobs

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Pablo Heras-Casado

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The Sacred Polyphony of El Greco's Toledo
Ensemble Plus Ultra

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Full Discography