Magazine article Gramophone

Szymanowski: Stabat Mater, Op 53

Magazine article Gramophone

Szymanowski: Stabat Mater, Op 53

Article excerpt


Stabat mater, Op 53 (a). Harnasie, Op 55 (b)

(a) Lucy Crowe sop (a) Pamela Helen Stephen mez

(b) Robert Murray ten (a) Gabor Bretz bar BBC Symphony

Chorus and Orchestra / Edward Gardner

Chandos [F][SACD], CHSA5123 (59' * DDD/DSD * T/t)


Chorus joins BBC SO for second Gardner Szymanowski disc

Two of Szymanowski's most sublime later works here receive performances entirely commensurate with their stature and thoroughly in tune with the music's distinctive world of expression. In the Stabat mater of 1925-26, the range of utterance, whether rapt or stark, declamatory or exultant, is beautifully judged. While the BBC Symphony Orchestra is a crucial force in etching in the spectrum and mix of colour, the chorus and soloists in the unaccompanied fourth part are especially effective in fixing the mood of hushed, spiritual intensity, all the more evocative when set in contrast with the baritone's urgent pleading and the orchestra's insistent tolling in the following movement, with its rousing climax of full orchestral panoply and organ. …

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