Review of the year: critics’ picks



Every December, classical music critics from papers across the world pick their highlights of the year, from best performances to best recordings. It’s heartening to see so many Askonas Holt artists appearing in critics’ picks from The Observer, The New York Times and more. 

Below is a round-up of just a few of this year’s ‘best classical’ articles.

Fiona Maddocks’ 10 best classical performances (The Observer)

Fiona gives a nod also to Louise Alder, winner of the audience prize at Cardiff Singer of the World, the opening of Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie, and new operas from Nico Muhly (Marnie, with Eleanor Dennis and Matthew Durkan), Ryan Wigglesworth (The Winter’s Tale, with Sophie Bevan and Neal Davies) and Thomas Adès (The Exterminating Angel, with Sir Thomas Allen, Frédéric Antoun, Sophie Bevan, Iestyn Davies and Christine Rice).

Watch an excerpt from Sir András Schiff‘s late-night Prom, in which he performed Book 1 of Bach’s The Well-Tempered Clavier, below. He’ll return next year for Book 2.

New York Times 25 best classical recordings

Listen to the NY Times full playlist below:

20 best classical releases, by Kate Molleson (The Herald Scotland)

“It’s just there. The ending is mayhem, the most cacophonous writing in any of the quartets. At the beginning of the coda you have this rustic, folky writing, and then after the squiggly semiquavers there’s a crescendo, it goes into fourths and ninths and becomes basically unintelligible to someone listening for the first time. But it’s our job to make it clear.”

Read: The Heath Quartet on Bartók, welcoming their new second violinist and future plans

The New York Times best classical music performances of 2017

Anthony Tommasini:

Asmik Grigorian © Rytis Seskaitis

Zachary Woolfe:

Watch Dmitri Hvorostovsky‘s surprise performance at the Met Gala below:

The top 10 noteworthy moments in classical music in 2017 (The Washington Post)

Anne Midgette offers praise for Joyce DiDonato’s Ariodante at Carnegie Hall, with The English Concert, Harry Bicket, and Christiane Karg, and Martha Argerich’s “illuminating” performance of Prokofiev’s third piano concerto at The Kennedy Center on tour with the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia (for which they received four standing ovations!).

Watch Ariodante and Ginevra’s duet “Bramo aver mille vite” performed by Joyce DiDonato and Christiane Karg at Carnegie Hall below:

Gramophone Magazine Critics Choice 2017

Watch Iestyn, Carolyn and Joseph perform Purcell’s Sound The Trumpet (which features on Lost is my quiet) at the 2017 Gramophone Awards below:

Congratulations to all for such a successful 2017!

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