8 years ago

Volume 7 Issue 9 - June 2002

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Lortie has emerged as

Lortie has emerged as one of the top pianists of his day and the Liszt project with Pehlivanian coulcl_prove to be one of his greatest accomplishments. TheConceno No. 1 in E flat Major is one of r the most famous concertos in the piano literature. It maintains in,terest through Liszt's use of transforming themes: a sort of state of constant development in which the basic thematic material acts as a seed and is worked in such a way as to transform into something completely different. Lortie executes with 'Perfection. His trademark sound, subtle use of colour, strong rhythmic drive and clever use of dynamics come through brilliantly. There is ease to his playing that is inspiring. The orchestra supports him without overpowering and the two blend seamlessly. The second work is the Concerto No. 3 in E flat Major. This beautiful one movement work, with simplicity not usually associated with the music of Liszt, was never published during the composer's lifetime. Lortie's sound is big and DISCO\' ERIES powerful. The orchestra executes virtuosic , distinction, never overloading the six works passages cleanly and with a tight articulation recorded here with relentless "expressionist" adding clarity to the thick textures. The horror. In fact, the inventive variety of Webern's Concerto in A Major and the Concert orchestration becomes increasingly apparent as Pathetique complete the disc. the disc plays out. The most startling shift comes Thereare only a handful of pianists worki~g between the disc's centerpiece, the glowering today that can honestly demonstrate a complete Six Pieces, Op. 6, and Webern's Five Pieces, understanding of the scores of Liszt as well as Op. JO, which with its celesta, violins, and flute, the solo parts and how they interact. Lortie shows sounds almost frivolous in comparison. this quality throughout the recording. The overall Through the sound is very well balanced and extremely clear. movements of iU Thisisadefinitemustforanycollection. Op. 6 Yuasa """"·~~:!::!'.:~::,1'.1.."'P"""' Troy Milleker achieves a dramatic continuity that, at twelve Anton Webern: Passacaglia; Symphony; Five Pieces Ulster Orchestra; Takuo Yuasa Naxos 8.554841 minutes, seems epic. The work coils up to its celebrated funeral march - The severe economy of Anton Webern's music itself an inexorable build-up of tension from its is often equated with a bleak, enigmatic listening shuddering tam-tams to the fortissimo climax - experience. A new Naxos release of the beforeitdissipates.Asimilarem'otionallogic composer's collected orchestral works, only fifty- · shapes the opening Passacaglia, Op. 1, but is three minutes long, fights that prejudice with an strangely lacking in Yuasa's performance of the onslaught of symphonic colour. two longer, Symphony, Op. 21, and Glenn Gould once wrote that the music of Variations, Op. 30. Webern is not emotional but sensual. The Ulster Overall, however, the dueling concerns of form Orchestra under Takuo Yuasa respects that and emotion are well balanced. Yuasa certainly The first of a sertes of box sets/ : that present an ideal introduction to C1mada 's founding t•omposers 1md the breadth 1ind diversity of their output. 48

espects the score, but he demonstrates the power of Webern's music through sensual means as well. From this foundation he inspires the Ulster musicians to a committed, compelling performance. Brian McMillan Alban Berg: Wozzeck - Opera in Three Acts Op.7 Orche~tra and Chorus of the Royal Opera, Stockholm; Leif Segerstam NAXOS 8.660076-77 [2 discs] Cast: Carl Johan Falkman: Wozzeck Katarina Dalayman:,Marie Ultik Qvale: Captain Sten Wahlund: Doctor Lennart Stregard: Drum Major Klas Hedlund: Andres Marianne Eklof: Margret Recorded live at Kungliga Teatem, Stockholm, February 2000 DtSCOVERIES Berg calls forto sound as if only half that number are present. As this is a live performance there are a few stage noises that intrude from time to time. Though there is no translation of the libretto supplied in the multilingual program booklet, detailed synopses are offered to explain each scene ~ s significance. Lamento Daniel Taylor, Theatre of Early Music AT.lA Classique ACD2 2261 This new recording by Canada's prominent counter-tenor Daniel Taylor and his newly formed ensemble the Theatre of Early Music features many extraordinary sacred arias and instrumental sel~ctions by 17th century German Wozzeck is a cornerstone of composers. . the20thcentury HERG As the title repertoire, 1vi1uYch suggests, the greater portion of this disc consists operatic or ~:::.:,:~ ·;,;,:~'.::;" of sad, mournful, dignified music, in fact, almost other w i s e . ~~:,:•;:... enough minor key to cause~one to lapse into deep Naxos' offering ~ ~: ·;~:~rw.i depression had not the richly expressive \b:

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