Dunedin Consort – #11 – Gramophone’s International Choir Ranking 2010

It is with great pleasure and surprise that we announce that the Dunedin Consort has been ranked as #11 in Gramophone Magazine’s recent search for the top 20 choirs of the world. This follows on from a similar survey last year of the top orchestras in the world, which featured only one British orchestra.

This time British groups dominate the list, with the Monteverdi Choir taking the top spot. Placed ahead of such world-famous institutions as King’s College Choir, the Tallis Scholars and the Arnold Schoenberg Choir, Dunedin is clearly established as a key player on the world stage. Some might be surprised that we are counted as a choir at all, since the group consists of a constantly changing format of singers and instrumentalists, according to the requirements of the music concerned; the ‘choir’ element often comprises only four or five voices.

Might we even be able to claim that we are the highest ranking ‘non-choir’ on the list?

Linn Records – Label of the Year 2010 – Gramophone

We are delighted to announce that our recording partner Linn Records has won the Gramophone label of the year award.

On Friday 1st October, at the annual Gramophone Awards, Linn was named Label of the Year. For Linn, winning this prestigious award is the culmination of nearly three decades of work, and represents the dedication of a team striving to give the you the best music, with no compromises on quality or support of our artists.   To hear Gramophone’s Editor-in-Chief James Jolly describing Linn as “…the very model of a modern record company”  was, well, music to our ears.

Celebrate with 3 for 2 on all Linn Albums   To help celebrate this momentous occasion, we are offering 3 albums for the price of 2 across all Linn Records titles be it Studio Master download, SACD or even 180g Vinyl; with the offer running until 31st October 2010. Simply use the promotion code 3FOR2 when checking out.   Don’t know where to start? Well, our the award-winning albums below is a good place, or perhaps our specially selected range of highlights.

Previous Linn Award-Winners   Recent Gramophone Award ceremonies have seen many of Linn’s artists singled out for their outstanding recordings.   In 2010 the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Sir Charles Mackerras was a Finalist in the Orchestral Album of the Year category for their album Mozart Symphonies 29, 31 (Paris), 32, 35 (Haffner) & 36 (Linz) whilst Phantasm was a Finalist in the Early Music Album of the Year category for their album, John Ward: Consort music for five and six viols.   2009 saw another two recordings highlighted: Henry Purcell: Ten Sonatas in Four Parts by Retrospect Trio was a Finalist in the Baroque Instrumental Album of the Year category and the Dunedin Consort’s Acis and Galatea (Original Cannons Performing Version 1718) was a Finalist in the Baroque Vocal Album of the Year category.   James Gilchrist flew the flag for Linn at the 2008 Awards with a Finalist nod in the Solo Vocal Album of the Year category for this album with the Fitzwilliam Quartet and pianist Anna Tilbrook, On Wenlock Edge.   Linn’s biggest triumph, prior to being named ‘Label of the Year’ came in 2007 when the mighty Dunedin Consort scooped the Baroque Vocal Album of the Year Award for their recording of Handel’s Messiah (Dublin Version, 1742).  This superb two-disc album was later released on 180g vinyl in a beautiful 3 LP boxed set.   Many thanks to all who contributed to these successes, we will be working hard to bring you more award-winning recordings in the future.

B Minor Mass – Editor’s Choice – Gramophone

The award-winning Dunedin Consort’s “spine-tingling” new album ‘J.S. Bach Mass in B Minor’ has just been named ‘Editor’s Choice’ in the latest issue of Gramophone Magazine. This wonderful double album features the premiere recording of the Breitkopf & Härtel Edition of Bach’s popular mass edited by Joshua Rifkin in 2006. Director John Butt and the Dunedin Consort make this both a revealing, historically accurate soloist-led performance and a truly groundbreaking recording.

This recording has been very highly praised by the critics who have described it as “definitive“, “sensational” and “powerful“.

“Surely no other recording of Bach’s B Minor Mass bounces along with such joy as this.”  The Times

“It’s sensational. It’s a knockout. Another award winner, perhaps?” The Herald

“You can really lose yourself in this performance.”

“[The] performance is powerful and beautifully shaped.” Sunday Times

“This constantly changing texture makes us listen afresh to the beauty of Bach’s astonishing vocal writing.. A definitive recording.” The Observer

“Spine-tingling…an excellent recording.” International Record Review

John Butt wins the Royal Academy of Music Kohn Foundation Bach Prize

The Dunedin Consort is delighted to announce that John Butt is to be the fifth recipient of the Royal Academy of Music/Kohn Foundation Bach Prize.

The prize is given annually to an outstanding contributor in the field of Bach performance and scholarship, and John joins a very distinguished roster of winners – Christoph Wolff, András Schiff, John Eliot Gardiner and Peter Schreier.

Commenting on the honour, John said

‘This is great news, not just for me, but also for the Scottish musical scene, the University of Glasgow and, of course, the Dunedin Consort – it’s a huge reward for all our work in cultivating an ensemble not merely of international quality, but as a world leader in Baroque performance.’

Congratulations John!

For more information please see the Royal Academy of Music website.

Messiah – Gramophone Award 2007

David Vickers, Gramophone

[…] the freshest, most natural, revelatory and transparently joyful Messiah I have heard for a very long time.