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Cat. No. CHAN 10615 Price: £10.5 No. of discs: 1
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CHAN 10615 - The Virtuoso Clarinet
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Available From: 15 September 2010

‘Virtuoso Clarinet’ – Michael Collins, Piers Lane

Michael Collins is one of our most versatile clarinettists, possessing a dazzling virtuosity and sensitive musicianship that have made him the favourite of conductors, composers, and audiences throughout the world. Now an exclusive Chandos artist, Collins is embarking on a series of recordings designed to display the extraordinarily wide range of music written for his instrument. The present programme comprises a varied repertoire, concentrating generally (though not exclusively) on its more extrovert virtuoso aspects and offering some breathtaking show-stoppers. Well-known works such as Rachmaninoff’s haunting Vocalise contrast with the sunny brilliance of Giampieri’s Carnival of Venice, and the playful, inventive French items by Milhaud and Messager provide a further contrast in mood and colour.


“This is virtuosity with no excuses. English clarinetist Michael Collins, abetted by Australian pianist Piers Lane, show just how supple and exhilarating the clarinet can be… Chandos has excelled itself with an up-front recording acoustic which suits the virtuosic nature of the recital. We hear both clarinetist and pianist centre stage as if we are in the choicest of recital hall seats.  *****

Anthony Clarke – Limelight magazine.au  - 10 May 2011

"...I find much to enjoy in Collin’s playing here. His command of the clarinet is superb, his tine is pure and supple ...He is, moreover, a musician of impeccable taste. Pianist Lane is top-notch as always..."
Richard A Kaplan  -      Fanfare  March/April 2011

“…what first strikes you about Michael Collin’s playing is its supreme naturalness…” “The next thing is the artistry that infuses it…” “The third thing is the wide range of expression he draws from the instrument…”
“…Piers Lane is his equal, vital partner.”    ****

David Cairns

The Sunday Times - 13 February 2011

                             ‘Editor’s Choice’ 
“Brilliant playing in every sense: the musical equivalent of a tray of bonbons crafted by Gordon Ramsay and a must for any clarinet fan.”      *****

Jessica Duchen

Classic FM Magazine - Janurary 2011

       Performance****                   Recording ****
“Virtuosity is at the heart of this appealing, exhilarating disc …”
Anthony Burton

BBC Music Magazine - January 2011

“A clarinet collection demonstrates these players’ joy in virtuosity.” “…the recording is outstandingly vivid with perfect balance between the instruments. What makes the disc more consistently enjoyable than many such offerings is the pure joy in virtuosity revealed in every item.”
Edward Greenfield

Gramophone - December 2010

“…This recital, with pianist Piers Lane, alternately delights and charms.”

Andrew Clark


Financial Times - 31 October 2010

            IRR Outstanding

‘…It is difficult to imagine a finer performance than that given here.’ ‘ …I enjoyed this disc immensely and give it my strongest recommendation.’ 


International Record Review - October 2010


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