Gramophone reveals top three recordings in 10 categories for Gramophone Awards 2020

Gramophone today reveals the 30 recordings which have made it through to the final round of the Gramophone Classical Music Awards 2020. The Awards celebrate outstanding recordings of the past year, as well as acknowledging artists, ensembles and labels that have made extraordinary contributions to the classical recording industry. 

THE SHORTLIST:

CHAMBER 

  • Bartók Piano Quintet. Veress String Trio
    Vilde Frang; Barnabás Keleman; Lawrence Power; Nicolas Altstaedt; Alexander Lonquich (Alpha)
  • Beethoven Violin Sonatas Op 12
    James Ehnes; Andrew Armstrong (Onyx)
  • Dohnanyí Piano Quintets. String Quartet No. 2
    Marc-André HamelinTakács Quartet (Hyperion)

CHORAL

  • JS Bach St Matthew Passion
    Soloists; Bach Collegium Japan / Maasaki Suzuki (BIS)
  • Handel Samson
    Soloists; Dunedin Consort / John Butt (Linn)
  • ‘An English Coronation’
    Gabrieli Consort and Player / Paul McCreesh (Signum)

CONCERTO (Sponsored by Classic FM)

  • Beethoven Piano Concertos Nos 2 & 5
    Martin Helmchen; Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin / Andrew Manze (Alpha)
  • Chopin Piano Concertos Nos 1 & 2
    Benjamin Grosvenor; Royal Scottish National Orchestra / Elim Chan (Decca)
  • Mozart Piano Concertos Nos 20 & 21
    Jean-Efflam Bavouzet; Manchester Camerata / Gábor Takács-Nágy (Chandos)

CONTEMPORARY (Sponsored by PPL)

  • Adès Piano Concerto. Totentanz
    Kirill Gerstein; Mark Stone; Christianne Stotijn; Boston Symphony Orchestra / Thomas Adès (DG)
  • Anderson Poetry Nearing Silence
    Nash Ensemble / Martyn Brabbins (NMC) 
  • Eötvös Halleluja. Alle vittime senza nome
    Matthias Brandt; Topi Lehtipuu; Iris Vermillion; WDR Chorus & Symphony Orchestra / Peter Eötvös; Santa Ceciila Orchestra, Rome / Antonio Pappano (Wergo)

EARLY MUSIC

  • Gesualdo Madrigali Libri primo & secondo
    Les Arts Florissants / Paul Agnew (Harmonia Mundi)
  • Peñalosa Lamentationes
    New York Polyphony (BIS) 
  • ‘Leonardo da Vinci: La musique secrète’ 
    Doulce Mémoire / Denis Raisin Dadre (Alpha)

INSTRUMENTAL

  • Beethoven Complete Piano Sonatas
    Igor Levit (Sony Classical)
  • Brahms ‘The Final Piano Pieces’
    Stephen Hough (Hyperion)
  • Prokofiev Piano Sonatas Nos 6-8
    Steven Osborne (Hyperion)

OPERA (Sponsored by E Gutzwiller et Cie)

  • Barber Vanessa
    Soloists; Glyndebourne Chorus; London Philharmonic Orchestra / Jakub Hrůša (Opus Arte)
  • Gounod Faust
    Soloists; Flemish Radio Choir; Les Talens Lyriques / Christophe Rousset (Bru Zane)
  • Handel Agrippina
    Soloists; Il Pomo d’Oro / Maxim Emelyanychev (Erato)

ORCHESTRAL (Sponsored by medici.tv)

  • Berlioz Symphonie fantastique
    Les Siècles / François-Xavier Roth (Harmonia Mundi)
  • Suk Asrael. Fairy Tale
  • Czech Philharmonic Orchestra / Jiří Bělohlávek (Decca)
  • Weinberg Symphonies Nos 2 & 21
    Gidon Kremer; City of Birmingham SO, Kremerata Baltica / Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla (DG)

RECITAL

  • Handel. Haydn. A Scarlatti ‘Arianna’
    Kate Lindsey; Arcangelo / Jonathan Cohen (Alpha)
  • ‘Si j’ai aimé’
    Sandrine Piau; Le Concert de la Loge / Julien Chauvin (Alpha)
  • ‘Facce d’amore’ 
    Jakub Józef Orliński; Il Pomo d’Oro / Maxim Emelyanychev (Erato)

SOLO VOCAL (Sponsored by Glyndebourne)

  • Janáček The Diary of One who Disappeared etc.
    Nicky Spence et al; Julius Drake
     (Hyperion)
  • Schubert Schwanengesang Brahms Vier ernste Gesänge
    Gerald Finley; Julius Drake (Hyperion)
  • Schumann Myrthen
    Camilla Tilling; Christian Gerhaher; Gerold Huber (Sony Classical)

From these shortlisted recordings, one will be chosen as the winner in each of the 10 categories, to be announced on September 22. A single album among those winners will go on to be named Recording of the Year, to be revealed at a digital Awards Ceremony on October 6 and broadcast to music lovers around the world on Gramophone’s website and social-media platforms, and on medici.tv

The specially conceived digital event will be hosted by Gramophone’s James Jolly and the mezzo Kate Lindsey – filmed largely around the beautiful grounds at Glyndebourne – with specially recorded original performances from Award winners, as well as announcements of other special Awards such as Artist of the Year (sponsored by Raymond Weil), Lifetime Achievement and Orchestra of the Year (presented with Apple Music, and the only public vote), as well as a one-off Beethoven 250 Award for 2020.

James Jolly, Gramophone’s Editor-in-Chief says:

While our summer has, sadly, been a largely silent one in the concert halls and operas houses, the riches of the recorded catalogue have continued to astound. It’s been something of vintage year and the breadth and depth of the shortlist this year is very impressive. We look forward to revealing the 10 recording category winners on September 22 and then, on October 6, unveiling the artist awards in a special filmed edition of the Gramophone Classical Music Awards which will be coming this year from Glyndebourne, one of the first venues to welcome audiences back to hear live music.’

Full coverage of the shortlist can be found in Gramophone‘s October issue and digital magazine published today and reviews of all the shortlisted albums can be explored in a special Awards digimag.

For the fifth consecutive year, the Awards are streamed free by medici.tv to audiences in more than 180 countries, a stream sponsored by Apple Music and E Gutzwiller et Cie, and with Help Musicians as the charity partner. Last year, more than 100,000 people tuned in from across the globe and with this being conceived and broadcast as a digital event, numbers are expected to exceed that. The broadcast will then be available for catch-up until January 2021.

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