Robert's debut CD The Franz Liszt Memorial Organ in Weimar (see the CD page for details) has recently been reviewed in The Organ and the Organ Club Journal:
"[T]he organ produces tones that are clean and exact, which is ideally exploited in those works where a clear texture is required, as in Liszt's ethereal reworking of Arcadelt's Ave Maria, or the crystalline lines of Pärt's [...] Annum per annum. [...] The rapid flourishes of Patrick Gowers's Occasional Trumpet Voluntary are fluid, and the premiere of the twenty-year-old Bertie Baigent's Bright spark is suitably luminous. [...] [Robert Smith's] playing is accomplished and dependable."
**** (four-star rating)
Curtis Rogers, The Organ Magazine No. 375 (February-April 2016), p. 53
"Robert shows what this organ can do in a 62-minute programme featuring 12 works. He starts with Bach BWV 546, then Bright spark, a world première recording of Bertie Baigent [born 1995] of a work commissioned for the concert. [...] A very enjoyable recording, and especially pleasing to have a disc from a young player. - Well done, Robert. I would suggest a visit to the company website http://www.jubal.de - allow plenty of time."
Organ Club Journal 2016/1, p. 66
Award-winning composer Bertie Baigent is currently writing a new piece for Robert: proud rock/bright sky will receive its world premiere as part of Robert's 2016 summer tour.
Bright spark, shot from a brighter place, the result of Bertie's and Robert's first collaboration, was released on CD in spring 2015.
7 June 2015, 9pm (GMT) - Robert's new CD will be featured on MDR Figaro's radio programme Orgelmagazin.
Presenter Claus Fischer and producer Horst Brauner will be discussing the Franz Liszt Memorial Organ in Weimar, the repertoire featured on the CD and Robert's collaboration with composer Bertie Baigent.
Today Robert's first solo CD, a portrait of the Franz Liszt Memorial Organ at the Herz-Jesu-Kirche in Weimar, was released by the classical CD label JUBAL.
A more detailed article about the album and an interview with Robert can be found on the Somerville College website.
Click here for more information and full track listings. The CD is available for purchase from Amazon UK.
Robert's two summer tours and his upcoming CD release are mentioned in Somerville College's alumni magazine. Click here to read the article.
Robert can be heard playing the new Kenneth Tickell organ at Keble College Chapel on Somerville College Choir's new CD. This musical advent calendar from Oxford University's leading mixed-voice college choir is the ensemble's second release on the Stone Records label, following a highly successful recording of Duruflé’s Requiem and Milford’s Mass for Five Voices.
The beautifully-presented album is a countdown to Christmas of 24 tracks (with a bonus track for Christmas Day) featuring wonderful performances of some of the best-loved carols of all time, and a handful of première recordings that will delight all classical music lovers. Each Advent Sunday is marked by a Bach chorale, and the listener is guided through Advent, as the excitement builds for the arrival of Christmas Day. The track list includes favourite carols by Rutter, Warlock, Poston, Gardner, Cornelius, Goldschmidt and Wood as well as newly commissioned works by Toby Young, Raymond Head and Paul Sartin (member of the folk band Bellowhead).
The Choir of Somerville College, conducted by David Crown, is joined by guest soloists Mary-Louise Aitken (soprano) and Jeremy Carpenter (baritone), who was most recently seen in the Royal Opera House's production of Britten's Gloriana. The CD also features Douglas Knight (organ) and Keith Fairbairn (percussion).
The album will be released on 4 November 2013 (UK) and 12 November 2013 (USA and all other countries). Advent Calendar is available for purchase from Amazon UK, Amazon US, Presto Classical, Stone Records and Blackwell's Music (Broad Street, Oxford). Please see Robert's discography for a full track list.