Joshua Bell

The Clas­si­cal Col­lec­tion

The Mail on Sunday - Event - - THEATRE -

The out­stand­ing Amer­i­can vi­o­lin­ist Joshua Bell turns 50 in De­cem­ber. And Sony is mark­ing his mile­stone early with this 14-CD ret­ro­spec­tive box, fea­tur­ing al­bums he has recorded over the past 20 years. It’s a give­away at about £25 for some won­der­ful mu­sic-mak­ing.

There’s quite a range of mu­sic on of­fer here: the great con­cer­tos by Si­belius, Men­delssohn, Beethoven and Tchaikovsky; a lesser known but de­light­ful one by Karl Gold­mark; two by con­tem­po­rary masters, the Brit Ni­cholas Maw and fel­low Amer­i­can John Corigliano; baroque mu­sic by Bach and Vi­valdi; cham­ber mu­sic by Brahms, Fauré and Ravel among oth­ers; and a fun ‘Gersh­win Fan­tasy’ al­bum of his own de­vis­ing.

Stir in two pop­u­lar encore CDs and two Beethoven sym­phonies, where Bell con­ducts our own Academy of St Martin in the Fields, and you’ve got a com­pelling por­trait of one of to­day’s mas­ter mu­si­cians.

David Mel­lor

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