Classical Best Versions

What Is The Very Best Version?

In a catalogue that lists over 200 recordings of Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons", and even 60 versions of Orff's "Carmina Burana", which is the very best?

With the help of Gramophone, Penguin Stereo Guide, BBC Music, and our own ears, we have put together the definitive guide to the popular classics.

There follows 200 recommended recordings that should find a place in everyone's collection.

Displaying items 81 to 100 of 262

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Mozart: Don Giovanni, K527 (Complete opera) cover
add to cart $20.00 In Stock
W. A. MOZART
Mozart: Don Giovanni, K527 (Complete opera)
Hakan Hagegard, Gilles Cachemaille, Arleen Auger, Della Jones / Drottningholm Court Theatre, Arnold Ostman
[ Double Decca / 2 CD - released 1/Aug/2007 ]
"Even those who have never been to Drottningholm and experienced Arnold Ostman's Mozart in the flesh will know exactly what it is that makes his recorded performances live." (Gramophone)
In a Summer Garden (Brigg Fair; A Song of Summer, etc) cover
add to cart $17.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
DELIUS
In a Summer Garden (Brigg Fair; A Song of Summer, etc)
Halle Orchestra / London Philharmonic Orchestra / Vernon Handley
[ EMI Classics for Pleasure / CD - released 29/Jun/2002 ]
"Although the tempi are somewhat controversial, Handley is an understanding and exciting Delian, and these pieces are beautifully played. A bargain" (Penguin Guide)
Bach: Mass in B minor cover
add to cart $60.00 Low Stock
J. S. BACH
Bach: Mass in B minor
Hannah Morrison (sop) Meg Bragle (alto) Esther Brazil (mezzo) Peter Davoren (ten) Alex Ashworth (bass) / English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner
[ Soli Deo Gloria / 2 CD - released 22/Dec/2015 ]
"Thirty years since his pioneering first version, Gardiner returns to re-record the mighty Mass in B minor; the impressive result draws on all his great knowledge and experience of Bach's music." Gramophone Award Nomination 2016 - Baroque Vocal
Miroirs (with Schumann-Kreisleriana) cover
add to cart $36.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
RAVEL
Miroirs (with Schumann-Kreisleriana)
Herbert Schuch (piano)
[ Oehms / CD - released 1/Jun/2006 ]
"Herbert Schuch is a 27 year old Romanian whose recording debut is of an intimidating mastery and stylistic assurance." Editor's Choice Gramophone June 2006
Gesualdo: Tenebrae cover
add to cart $64.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
CARLO GESUALDO
Gesualdo: Tenebrae
The Hilliard Ensemble
[ ECM Records / 2 CD - released 1/Apr/2009 ]
Vocal ensemble performance doesn't get any more technically polished or musically affecting than this offering from the Hilliard Ensemble--an example of what happens when a group of individual singers performs as a spiritual entity. Of course, the...
Complete Schubert Edition: Die Schone Mullerin cover
add to cart $22.00 In Stock
SCHUBERT
Complete Schubert Edition: Die Schone Mullerin
Ian Bostridge (tenor) Graham Johnson (piano) Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (reader)
[ Hyperion 30 / CD - released 1/Oct/2010 ]
GRAMOPHONE AWARD WINNER - PENGUIN GUIDE ROSETTE - GRAMOPHONE EDITOR'S CHOICE / CRITICS' CHOICE
La Traviata (Complete Opera) cover
add to cart $50.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
VERDI
La Traviata (Complete Opera)
Ileana Cotrubas / Placido Domingo / Sherrill Milnes / Bayerisches Staatsorchester. Carlos Kleiber (cond)
[ Deutsche Grammophon Originals / 2 CD Box Set - released 1/Jun/2008 ]
"This performance is so compelling dramatically, and as a recording much more natural in the latter respect that its rivals, it could well be a newcomer's first choice." (Gramophone)
Violin Concerto No 1 / La Campanella / Moses Fantasy for violin & piano cover
add to cart $35.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
Beethoven: Complete sonatas for violin and piano (plus free 'making of' DVD) cover
add to cart $45.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
LUDWIG van BEETHOVEN
Beethoven: Complete sonatas for violin and piano (plus free 'making of' DVD)
Isabelle Faust (violin) Alexander Melnikov (piano)
[ Harmonia Mundi / 4 CD Box Set - released 1/Sep/2009 ]
Gramophone Awards 2010: WINNER: Chamber - "The combination of the two fires a laser between the staves...A marvellous set." Gramophone Magazine
Mozart: Complete Violin Concertos cover
add to cart $42.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
W. A. MOZART
Mozart: Complete Violin Concertos
Isabelle Faust (violin) / Il Giardino Armonico, Giovanni Antonini
[ Harmonia Mundi / 2 CD - released 20/Nov/2016 ]
"her sound growing out of the corporate entity to glitter, coax, snarl and soar as required…[a] thought-provoking and eminently enjoyable cycle" Gramophone Award WINNER 2017 - RECORDING OF THE YEAR
Beethoven / Berg: Violin Concertos cover
add to cart $35.00 In Stock
BEETHOVEN / ALBAN BERG
Beethoven / Berg: Violin Concertos
Isabelle Faust (violin) / Orchestra Mozart / Claudio Abbado
[ Harmonia Mundi / CD - released 1/Mar/2012 ]
"The Beethoven and Berg Violin Concertos aren't commonly paired on disc. However, in this case it seems like an inspired piece of programme planning. Outstanding performances of both concertos, then; I'll want to return to them often." (Gramophone...
Bartok: Violin Concertos cover
add to cart $32.00 In Stock
BELA BARTOK
Bartok: Violin Concertos
Isabelle Faust (violin) / Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Daniel Harding
[ Harmonia Mundi / CD - released 29/Jul/2013 ]
BBC Music Magazine Awards 2014 Concerto Finalist / GRAMOPHONE MAGAZINE AWARD NOMINATION 2014
Scherzi, Preludes & Piano Sonata No. 2 cover
add to cart $24.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
CHOPIN
Scherzi, Preludes & Piano Sonata No. 2
Ivo Pogorelich (piano)
[ Deutsche Grammophon Duo / 2 CD - released 15/Mar/2012 ]
"Second to none in sheer keyboard brilliance … everything he does is always done with princely authority." (Gramophone)
Prokofiev: Piano Sonata No 6 / Ravel: Gaspard de la Nuit / Chopin: Sonata No 2 cover
add to cart $20.00 Low Stock
SERGEI PROKOFIEV / MAURICE RAVEL / FREDERIC CHOPIN
Prokofiev: Piano Sonata No 6 / Ravel: Gaspard de la Nuit / Chopin: Sonata No 2
Ivo Pogorelich (piano)
[ Deutsche Grammophon Originals / CD - released 20/Mar/2003 ]
"Pogorelich's Gaspard is out of the ordinary. In Le Gibet, we are made conscious of the pianist's refinement of tone and colour first, and Ravel's poetic vision afterwards, But for all that, this is piano playing of astonishing quality." Rosette Peng
Penderecki: A Polish Requiem cover
add to cart $28.00 Low Stock
Elgar: Cello Concerto / Sea Pictures / Overture: Cockaigne cover
add to cart $15.00 Low Stock
EDWARD ELGAR
Elgar: Cello Concerto / Sea Pictures / Overture: Cockaigne
Jacqueline Du Pre (cello) Dame Janet Baker (mezzo) / London Symphony orchestra, Sir John Barbirolli
[ Warner Classics Original Jacket Reissues / CD - released 22/Aug/2015 ]
GRAMOPHONE MAGAZINE 100 GREATEST RECORDINGS OF ALL TIME
Barber / Korngold / Walton: Violin Concertos cover
add to cart $32.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
BARBER / KORNGOLD / WALTON
Barber / Korngold / Walton: Violin Concertos
James Ehnes (violin) / Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Bramwell Tovey
[ ONYX / CD - released 1/Feb/2007 ]
Rosette Recording - Penguin Stereo Guide - "A fine violinist excels himself in an outstanding trio of romantic concertos" (Gramophone)
Mahler: Kindertotenlieder / Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen / etc cover
add to cart $25.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
GUSTAV MAHLER
Mahler: Kindertotenlieder / Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen / etc
Janet Baker / Halle & New Philharmonia Orchestras / Sir John Barbirolli
[ EMI Great Recordings of the Century / CD - released 27/Aug/1999 ]
1001 Classical recordings you must hear before you die (1901-1950) - "The spontaneous feeling of soloist and conductor of this music comes over as in a live performance and brings out the tenderness to a unique degree. An indispensable CD." (Penguin...
Janet Baker sings Lieder cover
add to cart $18.00 In Stock
SCHUMANN / SCHUBERT / BRAHMS
Janet Baker sings Lieder
Janet Baker (mezzo-soprano) / Martin Isepp (piano)
[ Regis Records / CD - released 18/Oct/2005 ]
"Janet Baker's range of expression.. runs the whole gamut from joyful golden tone colour of courtship to the agony of bereavement ..Martin Isepp a highly sensitive and and supportive partner.." - Penguin Guide Rosette
Ravel: Jeux de Miroirs cover
add to cart $35.00 Low Stock
MAURICE RAVEL
Ravel: Jeux de Miroirs
Javier Perianes (piano) / Orchestre de Paris, Josep Pons
[ Harmonia Mundi / CD - released 29/Nov/2019 ]
"I loved this disc. The music is wonderful; within this programme we experience Ravel as poet, sophisticate, wit and, always, as the master craftsman." MusicWeb Recommended Feb 2020