Magazine article Czech Music

Fantaisies Symphoniques, Fresques, Juliette

Magazine article Czech Music

Fantaisies Symphoniques, Fresques, Juliette

Article excerpt

Bohuslav Martinu

Fantaisies symphoniques, Fresques, Juliette

Symphony Orchestra St. Gallen, Jiri Kout. Production: Christian Leins. Text: Ger., Eng. Recorded 6/2003 a 3/2004. Released: 2004. TT: 63:17. DDD. 1 CD BMG Classics 82876 57740 2 (Sony BMG).

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The album contains three pieces that are among the most beautiful written by Martinu. The 6th Symphony is generally considered an extraordinary achievement, the Frescos of Pierro della Francesca are in the same, Neo-impressionist vein, and the three-part suite recalling some key orchestral passages from Julietta (in the arrangement by Zbynek Vostrak) apploaches his late symphonies and equals them in intensity of beauty. The pieces are extremely demanding for performers, however, since they depend on convincing overlaps of colour, and complete integration of the major passages and small nuances of expression. Jiri Kout with his orchestra from the Swiss town of St. Gallen is astounding in these respects. You might think that orchestras from outside major cities have a right to certain limitations, but here the playing is in the first league. …

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