Alpha has been a noted reference in the world of classical music since its inception twelve years ago. Today, the label is broadening its horizons, welcoming outstanding new artists and opening its doors to an array of innovative projects.
Vocal repertoire becomes a major focus of the new ALPHA: Véronique Gens has just recorded a recital of French songs with Susan Manoff as part of an ongoing collaboration with the label. The baritone Georg Nigl also joins Alpha. He will collaborate with Andreas Staier on a Bach album. The new generation is represented by Gaëlle Arquez and the soprano Mari Eriksmoen. She will record a programme of songs by Grieg, Strauss and Wolf in April in the framework of the partnership between ALPHA and the Academy of the Aix-en-Provence Festival.
Outstanding instrumental soloists have also signed with ALPHA: the pianist Anna Vinnitskaya presents the Shostakovich concertos with Kremerata Baltica. Others will be announced soon.
Collaborations with major orchestras are being finalised, but we can announce multi-year projects with Hervé Niquet and with Le Concert Spirituel (Vivaldi Gloria & Magnificat for double choir to be released this fall). Equally noteworthy are the Beethoven symphonies recorded by Martin Haselböck and the Wiener Akademie in the halls where they were first performed.
ALPHA is also expanding its chronological scope, since the label is launching a series with the Ensemble Intercontemporain and Matthias Pintscher and will release a program by Peter Eötvös. For the twentieth century, Arthur Honegger’s Jeanne d’Arc au bûcher has just appeared, with an incredibly intense narrator, the actress Marion Cotillard.
As part of the new series ALPHA OPERA, a DVD collection has been created in conjunction with major institutions such as the THEATRE ROYAL DE LA MONNAIE in Brussels and the Opéra Royal du Château de Versailles, featuring top ensembles including Les Talens Lyriques under Christophe Rousset and Le Concert Spirituel under Hervé Niquet (Don Quichotte chez la Duchesse by Boismortier, directed by Corinne et Gilles BENIZIO, aka SHIRLEY & DINO).
ALPHA remains faithful to the artists who have made its history and its reputation. Vincent Dumestre and Le Poème Harmonique will present a disc of Airs de Cour in the autumn. Bruno Cocset has recorded a second volume of works by Barrière, and Olivier Fortin, Alexis Kossenko, Lucille Boulanger, Arnaud de Pasquale, Céline Frisch and Café ZIMMERMANN will also offer new releases. The ambitious Haydn 2032 project continues under the direction of Giovanni Antonini, while the ‘Château de Versailles’ collection presents recordings of Campra and Leclair by Olivier Schneebeli and Sébastien d’Hérin respectively.
In order to strenghten the label on the international scene, ALPHA will bring together all its house artists with those who recorded for ZIG-ZAG TERRITOIRES. This merger will make for greater coherence among the 600 recordings in the existing catalogues (especially in the field of early music, the strong point of both labels) and the new releases. By the end of 2015 ALPHA will thus offer a chance to renew acquaintance with such major artists as the Belcea Quartet, Doulce Mémoire and Denis Raisin Dadre, Nelson Goerner in Chopin, Tedi Papavrami in Bartók, Amandine Beyer, Mario Ceccato, and Alexei Lubimov and many others. Another highlight of the year is the seventieth birthday of Jos Van Immerseel: with Anima Eterna Brugge, he will present a magnificent Schubertiade as well as a symphonic programme with Janácek and Dvoràk.
Since December 1st 2014, the label is directed by Didier Martin.