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Naxos 25th Anniversary

Naxos marks its first twenty-five years by offering a look behind the scenes in a new book published by Little Brown on its Piatkus imprint. The Story of Naxos will be available in hardback from 3 May 2012. The four-hundred-and-fifty-page illustrated book describes the changing landscape of the classical music recording industry, tracing the rise of the label from its humble beginnings to its current position as one of the leading classical recording labels. Divided into three main sections, the book profiles the company's founder and chairman, Klaus Heymann, then introduces us to the leading artists, composers and conductors in the Naxos catalogue, including Marin Alsop, Leonard Slatkin, Takako Nishizaki, John Corigliano and Peter Maxwell Davies. The final section of the book outlines the company history and structure, providing a unique insight into the workings of a record label and its evolution over time in response to commercial success and advances in technology.

In April 2012, Naxos is releasing nine special edition ten-disc box-sets entitled Great Opera, Great Ballet, Great Piano Concertos, Great Romantic Symphonies, Great Violin Concertos, Great Russian Symphonies, Great Classical Symphonies, Great Baroque Masterpieces and Great Sacred Masterpieces. Each set will contain an array of tracks carefully selected from the greatest and best-loved works in the repertoire. All boxes come with a fascinating extended booklet with detailed information on the genre itself, chronological placement of each work and composer, and a comprehensive study of the music.

Throughout the year, the label will be offering free downloads to all customers. One free download is available from the first of each month from and will feature tracks from various music strands chosen to reflect particular strengths of the Naxos catalogue, and which show the diversity of repertoire on offer from the label. The downloads will include tracks from the American Classics, British Piano Concertos and English Song series, among others.

Naxos continues as a leader and innovator with particular emphasis on education. Current projects include a programme of e-books, i-books and integrated media products all of which will build on the label's past efforts to introduce new listeners to the world of classical music. Titles released in 2012 include Mendelssohn - His Life and Music, Discover Music of the Romantic Era, Maxwell Davies: A Portrait and Manuel de Falla: Short Profile.

Of all of Naxos' initiatives in the digital arena, its online streaming libraries have had the greatest impact on building future classical audiences. With over nine-hundred-thousand tracks, Naxos Music Library is now used by thousands of schools and colleges around the world and has become the listening source of choice for a whole generation of music students and professionals. 2012 sees the addition of the Warner Classics catalogue to the Naxos Music Library.

2012 will also see the development of more apps [applications] from the label, following the success of the My First Classical Music App released in October last year. Further apps aimed at children are planned with The Little Classical Music App, The Little Mozart App, My First Classical Music App adapted for mobile phone and The Little Piano App among others. Autumn 2012 will see the first app aimed at the adult market with the release of A Guided Tour of the Romantic Era for use on iPhone, Android phones and the iPad. Future titles for this market include A Guided Tour of the Baroque Era, which will be released later in the year.

Always known for its budget price and distinctive packaging, Naxos is continuing to produce recordings of international repute, with some three-hundred new titles to be released in 2012. These will feature high-profile house artists such as Marin Alsop, Vasily Petrenko, Leonard Slatkin, the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra to name but a few. The label has managed to attract artists of international repute whilst still maintaining its budget price - Naxos is no longer 'just' a budget label - it is a label of real quality.

Klaus Heymann says: 'When I began Naxos in 1987 the music industry was very different from today. The compact disc was in its infancy and the internet as we know it today didn't exist, difficult though that may be to imagine. Despite the many challenges faced during the online era, there are three key principles to which Naxos remains committed: repertoire, value and innovation. We are all looking forward to this journey as it unfolds over the next twenty-five years.'


Posted: 2 April 2012 by Naxos

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