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Steven Isserlis and Thomas Adès play Liszt

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This week’s free download comes from a recording from cellist Steven Isserlis and pianist and composer Thomas Adès. The piece, Liszt’s Die Zelle in Nonnenwerth, is the lament of a singer who shuts himself off from the world in a cloister at Nonnenwerth.

As well as this version for cello and piano, Liszt also wrote several vocal arrangements of the piece, four versions for solo piano and one for piano duet.

Isserlis and Adès recorded the piece – along with music by Janáček, Fauré, Kurtág and Adès himself – on the Hyperion label. The recording was the BBC Music Magazine chamber choice recording in the December issue.

Our critic, Malcolm Hayes, wrote: ‘As if Thomas Adès’s composing and conducting skills were each not exceptional enough, he continues to grace the musical world with his piano playing as well. Match this with the mellow sound and manner of Steven Isserlis’s cello, and you have something very special.’

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