Alexander Neef Recommends

Each month Alexander recommends a selection of music he's enjoying from the Universal Classics catalogue. 

Strauss: Arabella

Keith Jarrett: The Köln Concert

"One of the greatest piano albums of all time. Keith Jarrett's playing is absolutely mesmerizing."

– Alexander Neef

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Previous Recommendations

Mozart: Piano Concertos No.9, K.271 & No.21, K.467 - Uchida, The Cleveland Orchestra

"How is it possible that Mitsuko Uchida's Mozart keeps getting better and better?"

– Alexander Neef

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Strauss: Arabella. Featuring Lisa della Casa, with the Vienna Philharmonic conducted by Georg Solti

"Seeing Arabella in Santa Fe just a few weeks ago reminded me what a wonderful piece this is – and for me Lisa della Casa definitely is the most wonderful Arabella on record. Honest, dignified and very touching." – Alexander Neef

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Shostakovich: Symphony No. 10 / Stravinsky: Concerto In D For Violin & Orchestra; Karel Ancerl / Czech Philharmonic Orchestra

"Former TSO Music Director Karel Ancerl undoubtedly was one of the greatest conductors of the 20th century. His recording of Shostakovich's 10th Symphony with the Czech Philharmonic from the 1950s has never been surpassed." – Alexander Neef

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Debussy: La Mer; Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé, Suite No. 2; Berliner Philharmoniker/Herbert von Karajan

"My favourite disc of music by the two greatest French impressionists." – Alexander Neef

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Sarah Vaughan with Clifford Brown

"I've been in love with Sarah Vaughan ever since I heard her sing the opening lines of "Lullaby of Birdland." One of the most perfect vocal albums of all time." – Alexander Neef

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Martha Argerich, Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky Piano Concertos with Riccardo Chailly and Kirill Kondrashin

"It's mind-blowing." – Alexander Neef

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Brahms's Piano Concerti, Emil Gilels with the Berlin Philharmonic, conducted by Eugen Jochum

"Over the years I have become increasingly addicted to Brahms's music. Together with Carlos Kleiber's recording of Symphony No. 4 this recording presents two wonderful artists, Gilels and Jochum, with the greatest interpretation of the two concerti for piano and orchestra."
– Alexander Neef

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Mahler Symphony No. 5

"Karajan was, and remains, one of my favourite conductors and this is a recording that I have owned forever. Not having listened to it in a long time it gave me great pleasure to discover it again." – Alexander Neef

Schubert: The Late Piano Sonatas, D.958, D.959, & D.960

"One of the greatest pianists of our time just turned 70. This set of the late Schubert Sonatas is a beautiful reminder of his peerless artistry." – Alexander Neef

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Beethoven: Complete Symphonies, conducted by Riccardo Chailly

"The most exciting Beethoven cycle in 50 years." – Alexander Neef

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New Year's Concert From Vienna 1987

"My ultimate New Year's concert." – Alexander Neef

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Martha Argerich – Debut Recital

"The most stunning debut of a wonderful pianist; an album that I have loved for a long time. The two Brahms Rhapsodies belong to my all-time favorite piano music on record." – Alexander Neef

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Rossini's Guglielmo Tell (William Tell) 

"The mother of grand opera and still one of the grandest." – Alexander Neef

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Mitsuko Uchida & the Cleveland Orchestra – Mozart Piano Concertos No.20 in D minor & No.27 in B flat 

"One of the greatest pianists and Mozart players of all time with two of Mozart's most sublime piano concerti. A recording I love more each time I listen to it." – Alexander Neef

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Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Duke Ellington Songbook

Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Duke Ellington Songbook – Three CD Set

"Next to Maria Callas, arguably the best singer of the 20th century." – Alexander Neef

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Iphigenia en Tauride

Iphigénie en Tauride – Two CD Set

"The most intense and dramatic recording of Gluck's masterpiece to date." – Alexander Neef

Giuliani in America

Giulini in America – Six CD Set

"This is as good as it gets; the most unbelievable recording of this repertoire you'll ever hear. The energy of his conducting is just amazing." – Alexander Neef

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La Cenerentola

La Cenerentola – Two CD Set

Cecilia Bartoli sings the role that brought her to operatic stardom. Riccardo Chailly leads an all-Italian cast, orchestra and chorus in Rossini's La Cenerentola.