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"If music be the food of love, play on!" - William Shakespeare

Evil Penguin

Evil Penguin Records Classic is the youngest daughter in the Evil Penguin family of music labels, but its name may be misleading. Yes, we record classical music, but not in any classic sense.

You see, we are artist-minded rather than repertoire-centred. Most labels are out there to acquire a standard catalogue of (some type or era of) art music, but we focus on the persons behind the record. We’re in this business to bring you the sounds, but we also want to show you the effort, the sweat, and the passion an artist invests in getting his message across. It’s so much more than merely reproducing an existing score.

That’s why we release dvd’s in addition to cd’s (often together): we like to show you the recording process, the trials, the takes, the relief when it’s a wrap. But we also like to document the larger context of the recording: the artists’ views, their past achievements, their future dreams. We want to find out what motors their music, which instruments they play, and who built them. 

So, our focus is on the ambiance that sparks the music, as much as on the music itself. Needless to say that we take great care in finding the most adequate and inspiring recording location for each project. We’ve recorded in historical ballrooms, in dilapidated churches in Burgundy, in secluded chapels in the Ardennes, in grand châteaux along the Meuse. We follow our artists anywhere in search of good acoustics and great atmosphere.

And we encourage them to venture beyond the basic catalogue into unexplored corners of the musical universe. We love the standard repertoire and its conventional approaches, but we’re also curious for the unknown, the experimental, the wild. We’ve released Bach and Brahms on our label, but we’re just as serious about little-known 19th century chamber music for clarinet, or unusual period instruments.

Observe, finally, that we like long-term relationships. One-night stands may be fun for a while, but it’s going steady which brings depth and insight to a romance. That’s why we seek to sign exceptional talents at the start of their carreer, when they’ve got their whole life in front of them for us to record. But we also document the adventures of superstars at the height of their fame, especially when these involve special projects on unique locations.