Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto Op. 64; A Midsummer Night's Dream

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For a cost-cutter album of Felix Mendelssohn's evergreen Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64, and his brilliant incidental music for A Midsummer Night's Dream, Op. 61, this CD is a remarkably good deal, and newcomers to these essential Romantic works would do well to snap it up on sight. The vivid performance of the concerto by virtuoso violinist Leland Chen and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, under Jane Glover, is transparent in line and crystal clear in all details, and listeners will be hard-pressed to find a more beautifully played or better sounding recording at the budget price. Similarly, the recording of A Midsummer Night's Dream sparkles with bright timbres and scintillating rhythms, and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra radiates light and warmth in its full-bodied ensemble sound, so the music comes across with absolute clarity and rich textures that are almost palpable in their immediacy. Originally released in 1996, this disc in the Tring's Royal Philharmonic Collection audiophile series should find a place in any beginner's growing collection and be equally welcome in many connoisseurs' libraries.