Variations on a Theme by Stefan Wolpe
Catalog #: NV6496
Release Date: February 10, 202320th Century21st CenturySolo InstrumentalPiano
Very few genres are as difficult to interpret pianistically as that of contemporary serious music: it often requires a superhuman degree of both virtuosity and patience, and the potential pitfalls of expression are ever-present. Enter Korean pianist Koeun Grace Lee, who zestily breezes through the most varied contemporary repertoire imaginable, with a level of self-assurance and musical competence that borders on being a revelation. While also featuring folkloristically-inspired works by David Burge and Jean Ahn, the heart of VARIATIONS ON A THEME BY STEFAN WOLPE is the similarly-titled work by Robert Gross, spanning no less than twenty variations on a theme by Stefan Wolpe, the German-American interdisciplinary modernist. Sprawling yet precise, decisive yet eclectic, it's the perfect canvas for Lee, and the resulting symbiosis is mesmerizing.
Marta, The Tempest
Catalog #: NV6479
Release Date: February 3, 202320th CenturyRomanticChamberSolo InstrumentalGuitarPiano
Every pianist makes a piece their own, adding flourishes and signature accents, but Marta Brankovich takes artistic interpretation to a new level. Leveraging her passion and irreplicable touch on the piano, the black swan of piano conjures an unforgettable storm on MARTA, THE TEMPEST. This long-awaited exploratory deep-dive into the classical canon delivers fresh interpretations of works by Rachmaninoff, Chopin, Kaufman, Jirásek, and Webber, complete with a solo piano composition by Brankovich herself that offers an inside look into her artistic emergence. Weaving themes of adversity, opposing forces, and oneness with a profoundly emotive approach, Brankovich delivers a powerful program in this Navona Records release.
Catalog #: NV6477
Release Date: January 27, 202320th CenturyRomanticChamberHarpOboe
Few instruments are as viscerally associated with the idea of grace and beauty as the harp, and few are as apt to express a sense of yearning as the oboe. So what could possibly capture the feeling of love better than a duo composed of these two instruments? Possibly nothing, as harpist Rita Costanzi and oboist Alex Klein rivetingly demonstrate on AMOROSO, an archetypally romantic album of intimate chamber music. Well-known classics by Debussy, Fauré, Massenet, Rachmaninoff, Piazzolla, and Rodrigo shine in a new light, and two new, fittingly romantic pieces by contemporary composers Michael Cohen and Michael Amorosi perfectly complete this wonderful picture.
The New Epoch
Catalog #: NV6463
Release Date: September 9, 202220th CenturyChamberCelloPianoViolin
Artists are liminal figures — they cross thresholds and collapse boundaries between past, present, and future. In THE NEW EPOCH, three musicians from the Boston Artists Ensemble interpret works by French composers Fauré, Debussy, Ravel, and Lili Boulanger, infusing these pieces with unprecedented freshness and clarity. Each celebrated in their own right, cellist Jonathan Miller, violinist Lucia Lin, and pianist Diane Walsh join forces in every duo setting possible from this assortment of instruments. Exploring works written at the threshold of the First World War — with the world crossing into the violent twentieth century and composers reacting with music that looked both nostalgically back and innovatively forward — they underline the commonalities between each composer’s unique voice and reinterpret this music for our turbulent present. Each celebrated in their own right, cellist Jonathan Miller, violinist Lucia Lin, and pianist Diane Walsh join forces in every duo setting possible from this assortment of instruments. Exploring works written at the threshold of the First World War –– with the world crossing into the violent twentieth century and composers reacting with music that looked both nostalgically back and innovatively forward –– they underline the commonalities between each composer’s unique voice and reinterpret this music for our turbulent present.
Catalog #: NV6432
Release Date: June 24, 202220th CenturyChamberCelloPianoViolin
Throughout her storied career, composer and music activist Mary Howe elevated the status of women composers and the Washington DC music scene and gained notoriety for her orchestral works. Many of her pieces for smaller ensembles, however, remain unpublished. On BETWEEN US, premiere recordings of Howe’s duos at last see the light of day and showcase her knack for drawing out the melodic qualities and dynamic timbres of the piano, voice, and stringed instruments. The pieces transcend time, simultaneously pulling from the sensibility and formal structures of romanticism and 20th-century idioms, spanning and bridging the gaps that typically pigeonhole music into a specific milieu.
Catalog #: NV6431
Release Date: May 27, 202220th CenturyChamberSolo InstrumentalClarinetOboePiano
Navona Records presents LAST NOTES, an album tracing the musical footprint of composer Eric Biddington’s compositional history through revived works of the past. Some written nearly 30 years ago, the unearthed gems featured on this album speak in a fresh tone, effusing elegance and thoughtfulness across varied orchestrations and moods. From the tender sentiments teeming in Peace for Julie to the playful nature of A Little Dance and his deeply moving passages for bassoon and piano, Biddington covers a wide gamut of expression in these chamber works.
A City of Silver & A City of Fire
Catalog #: NV6429
Release Date: May 13, 202220th CenturySolo InstrumentalPiano
A CITY OF SILVER & A CITY OF FIRE from pianist Roberta Rust marked a monumental moment for classical music as Carnegie Hall’s first presentation of music by an American Indian composer performed by an American Indian artist. Written in celebration of two cities close to the composer’s heart, these works by Louis W. Ballard come with a generous helping of intricate musical narratives and sentimental tones that speak clearly and thoughtfully through Rust’s performance. Originally recorded in 1984, these pieces honor the late composer and spirit of those to whom they’re dedicated in this live recording.
Catalog #: NV6401
Release Date: April 1, 202220th CenturyRomanticSolo InstrumentalPiano
Acclaimed pianist Elaine Greenfield dazzles with originality, virtuosity and exuberant tone richness on her album RAVEL COMPARED on Navona Records. The French composer's works are brilliantly analyzed and brought to novel clarity with Greenfield's ingenious idea of recording the same repertoire twice, on two very different pianos – and juxtaposing them on this two-disc album. The first disc presents Ravel's music on an 1893 Erard from Paris, the same make and model as the composer's personal piano, from which Greenfield coaxes a mellow, full-bodied tone with an almost liquid quality. This rendition is contrasted with a second on an American Ivers & Pond parlor concert grand from 1917, brightly highlighting Ravel's idiosyncratic harmonies with modern, almost contemporary exactitude. Put together, RAVEL COMPARED palpably illustrates the depth of both Greenfield's skill as a performer as well as Ravel's aptitude as a composer – as lively and vivid as perhaps never before.
Catalog #: NV6409
Release Date: February 11, 202220th CenturyRomanticVocal MusicPianoVoice
Navona Records presents JOYS ABIDING, an album of vocal duets by female composers including previously unpublished duets by British-American composer Rebecca Clarke, the text of which inspired the album title. The extensive track list of duets from the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic periods is performed by Dana Zenobi, soprano, Oliver Worthington, baritone, Chuck Dillard, piano/harpsichord, and David Murray, double bass. JOYS ABIDING aims to elevate the important work of female composers who have historically been excluded from the male-dominated classical duet canon.
Catalog #: NV6385
Release Date: November 19, 202120th CenturyVocal MusicChoir
The University of South Dakota Chamber Singers under the direction of Dr. David Holdhusen proudly presents LUX AETERNA, a new album of choral works from Navona Records. As its title suggests, this collection employs the power of music to shed light into the lives of listeners. Beautifully performed by the elite group of vocalists carefully selected from the university’s student body, the album evokes a variety of musical genres, vocal colors, and historical styles, taking listeners on a spiritual journey through life’s tribulations to ultimate redemption. LUX AETERNA is a meditation on universal human themes that listeners will find richly meaningful.
Catalog #: NV6383
Release Date: November 19, 202120th CenturySolo InstrumentalPiano
On her debut solo album, MIROIRS, pianist HyeJin Kim embarks on a journey of self-reflection through music. The solo-piano repertoire by Gershwin, Ravel, and Granados provides a deliberately intimate experience, in which Kim shares career-shaping works that helped define her as a musician—and as a person. Her delicacy, precision, and passion for the music come through in each piece, which as a whole crafts a narrative that interweaves the concepts of art, life, and belonging.
Catalog #: NV6361
Release Date: September 24, 202120th CenturySolo InstrumentalPiano
Highly-acclaimed, highly-prolific pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico embarks on a magnificent journey through time by exploring an entire century's worth of North American piano music. RETRO AMERICANA splendidly showcases the whole gamut of a long-neglected genre seldom heard in such magnificence.
Solo & Chamber Music
Catalog #: NV6363
Release Date: August 13, 202120th CenturyChamberSolo InstrumentalAccordionOrganPiano
Internationally-renowned composer Wieslaw Rentowski presents CHAMBER WORKS on Navona Records, an album whose works span three decades of Rentowski’s chamber music oeuvre. Many of the works featured on the album are inspired by Louisiana and the Southern United States. The 1986 piece Baton Rouge for Prepared Piano celebrates the multitude of cultural traditions found in southern Louisiana and employs a variety of articulation techniques to create unique prepared piano sonorities.
Catalog #: NV6358
Release Date: July 9, 202120th CenturySolo InstrumentalPiano
Claude Debussy, Olivier Messiaen, and Pierre Boulez are stunningly reconciled in Christina Petrowska Quilico's Navona Records release SOUND VISIONARIES. Boasting a track record of over 50 recorded albums and having recently been named to the Order of Canada, the veteran pianist proves that despite all difficulties, finding common ground between these three composers can be done spectacularly.
Catalog #: NV6350
Release Date: May 28, 202120th CenturyLiturgicalVocal MusicChoir
The Jitro Czech Girls Choir and conductor Jiří Skopal return with GRATIAS on Navona Records. The commemorative album pays homage to Czech composer Ilja Hurník, whose playful compositions perfectly match the joyful imagination of youth without sacrificing a sliver of musical integrity. Also a prolific author, Hurnik infuses his compositions with narrative texts that give the music a storybook quality.
Wild Blue Yonder
Catalog #: NV6346
Release Date: April 23, 202120th Century21st CenturyChamberCelloOboeViolin
Eleanor Alberga explores the whole gamut of the human experience in WILD BLUE YONDER, an equally diverse and coherent set of four contemporary chamber music pieces. While written over the course of twenty-two years, these pieces burst the limits of both space and time. No-Man’s-Land Lullaby reaches back over a century to World War I; Shining Gate of Morpheus enters the realm of the mystical; Succubus Moon explores the dark sides of the human psyche; and The Wild Blue Yonder offers a glimpse into a world that is at once alien and wonderful. Undauntedly, positively unsettling album; perfect listening for these unsettling times and a worthy addition to the much hailed album of Alberga's three string quartets from 2019.
Catalog #: NV6328
Release Date: January 8, 202120th Century21st CenturySolo InstrumentalPiano
For Richard Fountain, piano music is as American as apple pie and baseball. On AMERICAN IVORY, his debut album on Navona Records, the well-versed pianist celebrates the variety and vitality of American art music by performing a decades-spanning collection of works by time-honored and contemporary composers alike.
Catalog #: NV6314
Release Date: November 20, 202020th CenturyOrchestralOrchestra
Michael G. Cunningham and Navona Records present PROSCENIUM MOMENTS, a highly challenging collection of Cunningham's orchestral compositions. Nestled in style between early Prokofiev and late Shostakovich, this particular selection of recordings provides a bird's eye view of Cunningham's catalogue.
Small is Beautiful
Catalog #: NV6294
Release Date: November 20, 202020th CenturySolo InstrumentalPiano
Japanese-Canadian pianist Yoko Hirota stuns with impeccable pianism on SMALL IS BEAUTIFUL: MINIATURE PIANO PIECES. Originally recorded in 2009, this remastered edition brings out the intricacies of 20th- and 21st-century piano composition with a clarity that was previously unheard of.