Colorado Symphony conductor Andrew Litton

(Courtesy Colorado Symphony)

The team at CPR Classical recently compiled a list of the year's standout classical releases, and many of the picks came from Colorado.

Jeff Zumfelde, CPR Classical's music director, points to a half-dozen discs from the Colorado Symphony, composers Daniel Kellogg and Carter Pann, and others. He spoke with Colorado Matters host Nathan Heffel.

Highlights:

  • A unique Colorado Symphony disc featured the full Aaron Copland ballets "Rodeo" and "Billy the Kid." Andrew Litton, the orchestra's principal guest conductor, talked with Colorado Matters earlier this year about recording the album. 
  • A soundtrack to the film "The Colorado," about the Colorado River, featured music by vocal group Roomful of Teeth, composers William Brittelle and John Luther Adams, percussionist Glenn Kotche and singer Shara Nova.
  • The Boulder-based Takacs Quartet released a memorable disc featuring music by Cesar Franck and Claude Debussy.
  • A disc by the four saxophonists in The Capitol Quartet earned a Pulitzer Prize nomination for University of Colorado-based composer Carter Pann. The composer spoke with Colorado Matters recently about "The Mechanics," the piece he wrote for Capitol Quartet.
  • An album of horn trios featured three Colorado Symphony musicians: horn player Michael Thornton, violinist Yumi Hwang-Williams and conductor/pianist Andrew Litton. Daniel Kellogg, another University of Colorado-based composer, wrote one of the three pieces.
  • Litton also conducted a disc of music by American composer Roy Harris, who taught at Colorado College in the 1940s.

Read about more of CPR Classical's favorite albums of 2016 .