Silk Road Ensemble and Mormon Tabernacle Choir Climb Billboard Classical Chart

Classic Arts News   Silk Road Ensemble and Mormon Tabernacle Choir Climb Billboard Classical Chart
Two ensembles — one enormous, one intimate; one exotic, one echt-American — made notable ascents on the Billboard classical chart this week.

Choose Something Like a Star by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir has had a quick and steady upward march, going from 22nd to 15th to second place in its three weeks in the top 25. Sony Classical's Silk Road Journeys: Beyond the Horizon, featuring Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble, made a similar, if not so steep, climb in the same period, going from no. 16 to no. 12 to no. 5.

Philips Classics' release of Mitsuko Uchida performing Beethoven's Piano Sonatas Op. 109-111 also moved upward, hitting no. 4. Last week the disc went from 21st to sixth place. Pierre Boulez's Mahler Symphony No. 2 with the Vienna Philharmonic on DG, having fallen from no. 10 to no. 18 last week, is back at no. 10.

All these contenders have pushed down popular violinist Andr_ Rieu's discs: The Flying Dutchman and Tuscany are now at nos. 6 and 9, respectively. The 5 Browns' No Boundaries completes its 13th week at no. 1, but their first release, The 5 Browns, has fallen from seventh to 16th place.

Joel Fan's World Keys, which hit the chart last week at no. 3, has slipped to no. 8.

There were no newcomers to the Billboard chart this week, though four titles did re-enter the top 25. The U.S. Army Field Band & Soldier's Chorus's Duty, Honor, Country is now at no. 19; the second disc in Osmo V‹nsk‹'s Beethoven Symphony cycle with the Minnesota Orchestra for Bis, of Nos. 3 and 8, has landed at no. 20; Sony Classical's The Essential Joshua Bell is no. 24; and guitarist Sharon Isbin's rendition of Rodrigo's Concierto de Aršnjuez, with conductor Jos_ Serebrier and the New York Philharmonic on Warner Classics, is at no. 25.

As with last week, there was little movement on this week's classical crossover chart. Andrea Bocelli and Il Divo are still dividing the top five spots between them (though Il Divo's two discs switched second and third places); the scores for the movies Star Wars III: Revenge of the Sith and Memoirs of a Geisha traded places at nos. 9 and 10; two CDs by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir remain in the top 15.

Two newcomers did enter the crossover chart, however: Love Divine (Nonesuch Records), a song cycle jazz pianist Brad Mehldau composed for Ren_e Fleming, debuted at no. 12, and the curiously titled Strung Out on Panic! At the Disco: A String Quartet Tribute (Vitamin Records) hit no. 17.

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