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 121 to 140 of 262

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Tone Poems: En Saga, The Dryad, Pohjola's Daughter, Night Ride and Sunrise cover
add to cart $35.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
SIBELIUS
Tone Poems: En Saga, The Dryad, Pohjola's Daughter, Night Ride and Sunrise
Lahti Symphony Orchestra conducted by Osmo Vanska
[ BIS / CD - released 1/Apr/2002 ]
1001 Classical recordings you must hear before you die (1901-1950) - This is a very appealing collection of Sibelius favourites and rarities." (Editor's Choice Gramophone Magazine Sept 2002)
Musical Offering (Musikalisches Opfer) BWV1079 cover
add to cart $32.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
J. S. BACH
Musical Offering (Musikalisches Opfer) BWV1079
Le Concert des Nations, Jordi Savall
[ Alia Vox / CD - released 30/Dec/2005 ]
"One is occasionally fortunate enough to come across a new recording of a great work, and a personal favourite, that is so good that all other recordings pale in comparison. A recording that is not only played and recorded impeccably, but also one...
Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 in E flat major, Op. 55 'Eroica' / Coriolan Overture, Op. 62 cover
add to cart $37.00 Low Stock
LUDWIG van BEETHOVEN
Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 in E flat major, Op. 55 'Eroica' / Coriolan Overture, Op. 62
Le Concert des Nations, Jordi Savall
[ Alia Vox SACD / Hybrid SACD - released 25/May/2016 ]
"the end-result has been amongst the most impressive demonstrations of believable surround-sound I have heard." Recording of the Month MusicWeb (May 2016)
MARBECKS COLLECTABLE: Grieg: Lyric Pieces cover
add to cart $20.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
EDWARD GRIEG
MARBECKS COLLECTABLE: Grieg: Lyric Pieces
Leif Ove Andsnes (piano)
[ EMI / Warner Classics / CD - released 3/Mar/2002 ]
GRAMOPHONE AWARD WINNER 2002 - Instrumental
Piano Sonatas Nos 24, 30, 32, 33 & 34 cover
add to cart $26.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
HAYDN
Piano Sonatas Nos 24, 30, 32, 33 & 34
Leif Ove Andsnes (piano)
[ EMI Music / CD - released 11/Jan/2002 ]
Rosette (Highest Rating) Penguin Stereo Guide
MARBECKS COLLECTABLE: Grieg/Schumann: Piano Concertos cover
add to cart $20.00 Low Stock
EDWARD GRIEG / ROBERT SCHUMANN
MARBECKS COLLECTABLE: Grieg/Schumann: Piano Concertos
Leif Ove Andsnes (piano) / Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra / Mariss Jansons
[ EMI Recommends / CD - released 5/Oct/2003 ]
GRAMOPHONE MAGAZINE AWARD WINNER 2004: CONCERTO RECORDING "Though the Schumann concerto does pop up on programmes relatively frequently, it's remarkable how rarely the Grieg appears on concert programmes that don't fall into the classical pops event....
Leif Ove Andsnes: Five Classic Albums cover
add to cart $40.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
GRIEG / HAYDN / MOZART / RACHMANINOV / SCHUMANN
Leif Ove Andsnes: Five Classic Albums
Leif Ove Andsnes (piano) with orchestras & conductors
[ Warner Five Classic Albums / 5 CD Box Set - released 20/Jan/2013 ]
"Andsnes is an aristocrat among pianists who has the gift of uncovering new depths without any loss of spontaneity of the slightest trace of artifice." BBC Music Magazine
Violin Concerto (Original & Final Versions) cover
add to cart $35.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
SIBELIUS
Violin Concerto (Original & Final Versions)
Leonidas Kavakos (violin) / Lahti Symphony Orchestra / Osmo Vanska
[ BIS / CD - released 1/Oct/2013 ]
"This disc offers an invaluable insight into the workings of Sibelius's mind.." (Gramophone)
Kullervo Symphony Op 7 cover
add to cart $35.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
Bach: Brandenburg Concertos Nos. 4, 5 & 6 / Suite No.2 in B minor, BWV 1067 cover
add to cart $15.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
J. S. BACH
Bach: Brandenburg Concertos Nos. 4, 5 & 6 / Suite No.2 in B minor, BWV 1067
The English Concert, Trevor Pinnock
[ Deutsche Grammophon The Full Works / CD - released 10/Jan/2018 ]
"Undoubtedly Pinnock's Brandenburgs, played on original instruments, represent the peak of his achievement as an advocate of authentic performance." Penguin Guide
Dvorak: Symphonies Nos 1-9 / Overtures / Scherzo Capriccioso cover
add to cart $120.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
ANTONIN DVORAK
Dvorak: Symphonies Nos 1-9 / Overtures / Scherzo Capriccioso
London Symphony Orchestra / Istvan Kertesz
[ Decca Collector's Edition / 6 CD Box Set - released 1/Jan/2002 ]
"The CD transfers are of Decca's best quality, full-bodied and vivid...his readings give us fresh insights into these often inspired works...a magnificent memorial to a conductor who died sadly young" - Rosette (Highest Award). Penguin Stereo Guide
Symphony No 2 'London' [Original Version] (with Butterworth - Banks of Green Willow) cover
add to cart $37.79 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
VAUGHAN WILLIAMS
Symphony No 2 'London' [Original Version] (with Butterworth - Banks of Green Willow)
London Symphony Orchestra / Richard Hickox
[ Chandos SACD / Hybrid SACD - released 20/Mar/2003 ]
'Hickox and the LSO respond with an unquenchable spirit, generous flexibility and tender affection that suit VW's admirably ambitious inspiration to a T, and Chandos' sound is big and bold to match. Quite simply, an essential purchase for anyone...
Prokofiev: Romeo and Juliet (Complete ballet recorded November 2008) cover
add to cart $32.00 Low Stock
SERGEI PROKOFIEV
Prokofiev: Romeo and Juliet (Complete ballet recorded November 2008)
London Symphony Orchestra, Valery Gergiev
[ LSO Live SACD / 2 SACD - released 20/Jan/2010 ]
DISC OF THE YEAR 2011 (BBC Music) - "Prokofiev's Romeo & Juliet warrants a hi-res recording of the complete score since it is regarded by many as the greatest ballet score ever composed. The live recording is sensational in its realism." (AudAud...
Lieder (Recorded live at Wigmore Hall, 30 November 1998) cover
add to cart $30.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
BRAHMS / HANDEL / LIEBERSON / MAHLER
Lieder (Recorded live at Wigmore Hall, 30 November 1998)
Lorraine Hunt Lieberson (mezzo-soprano) Roger Vignoles (piano)
[ Wigmore Hall Live / CD - released 21/Feb/2007 ]
Taped live at a Wigmore Hall recital in 1998 this recording has now come to light following Hunt Lieberson's tragically early death in 2006. Highly recommended by Marbecks staff - a definite disc of the year.
Debussy: Songs 4 cover
add to cart $10.00 Low Stock
CLAUDE DEBUSSY
Debussy: Songs 4
Lucy Crowe (soprano), Malcolm Martineau (piano) with Jennifer France (soprano) & Christopher Maltman (baritone)
[ Hyperion / CD - released 2/Mar/2018 ]
"In wonderful voice throughout, Crowe very much makes this repertory her own. Ascents into the stratospheres are all beautifully and securely accomplished, and those long melismas are tautly controlled and always expressive, never vacuous" Gramophone
Love Songs cover
add to cart $33.30 Low Stock
DVORAK / MARTINU / JANACEK
Love Songs
Magdalena Kozena (soprano) Graham Johnson (piano)
[ Deutsche Grammophon / CD - released 30/Aug/2000 ]
2001 GRAMOPHONE AWARD WINNER - Vocal
Puccini: Tosca (Complete Opera recorded in 1953) cover
add to cart $25.00 Low Stock
GIACOMO PUCCINI
Puccini: Tosca (Complete Opera recorded in 1953)
Maria Callas, Giuseppe di Stefano, Tito Gobbi / Coro e Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala, Milano. Victor de Sabata
[ Warner Classics Maria Callas Remastered / 2 CD - released 20/Oct/2014 ]
1001 Classical recordings you must hear before you die (1851-1900) -- "One of the great classics of the gramophone. Wonderful as Gobbi's and di Stefano's performances are, and superbly dramatic as de Sabata's conducting is, it is the unique Callas...
Chopin: Nocturnes (Complete) (2CD) cover
add to cart $35.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
FREDERIC CHOPIN
Chopin: Nocturnes (Complete) (2CD)
Maria Joao Pires (piano)
[ Deutsche Grammophon Duo / 2 CD - released 1/Mar/2012 ]
1001 Classical recordings to hear before you die (1801-1850) - "one has no hesitation in declaring Maria João Pires among the most eloquent master-musicians of our time." - Gramophone Classical Good CD Guide.
Requiem (with the 6 Biblical Songs) cover
add to cart $27.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
DVORAK
Requiem (with the 6 Biblical Songs)
Maria Stader / Siegline Wagner / Czech Philharmonic / Karel Ancerl
[ Deutsche Grammophon / 2 CD - released 26/Mar/2000 ]
"This superb DG set from 1959 brings an inspired performance of a work that can sound relatively conventional but which here emerges with fiery intensity, helped by a recording made in appropriately spacious acoustic that gives an illusion of an...
Franck: Organ Works cover
add to cart $20.00 Out of Stock
2-6 weeks
CESAR FRANCK
Franck: Organ Works
Marie-Claire Alain (organ)
[ Erato Apex / 2 CD ]
1001 Classical recordings you must hear before you die (1801-1850) -