Gramophone has just compiled a new Spotify playlist focusing on the Specialist’s Guide feature in their January issue. James Jolly introduces ten pieces for solo voice – scenas, solo cantatas and concert arias – that compress an often highly dramatic situation into about 12 minutes. The choice of music ranges from Monteverdi in the 17th century to György Ligeti’sMysteries of the Macabre, a high-wire eight minutes drawn in 1991 from his opera Le Grand Macabre. Along the way come works by Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven, and they enter the 20th century in the company of Alban Berg and Benjamin Britten who wrote his extraordinarily intense Phaedra for Dame Janet Baker who recorded it for Decca with the composer conducting. Click here to listen to gramophone Spotify playlist and sample the artistry of, among others, Montserrat Figueras, Janet Baker, Cecilia Bartoli, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and Anne Sofie von Otter.