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Stravinsky - Le Sacre du Printemps
+bonus documentary: Soulscapes
Staging, Choreography, Sets, Costumes, Lighting Design & Film by Uwe Scholz
Uwe Scholz, former director of the Leipzig Ballet, was hailed as one of the most brilliant choreographic minds of his generation and one of the most important German choreographers at the time of his untimely death in November 2004 at the age of 45. Scholz took up his first position as a choreographer with Marcia Haydée in Stuttgart when he was 22. He saw himself as a mixture between his teacher John Cranko and the influential George Balanchine, and the magically beautiful and extraordinarily musical choreographies that he created for houses such as the Opera in Vienna, La Scala, Zurich and Leipzig owe much to neoclassicism.This DVD recording focuses on the two interpretations of Le Sacre du Printemps that he created for 'his' Leipzig Ballet, the company that he led to international fame from 1991. The evening opens with a legendary solo interpretation, danced by Giovanni di Palma to Stravinsky's own adaptation for two pianos of the ‘Rite’. Often seen as Scholz's autobiographical legacy, this choreography shows a dancer's loneliness and despair in heartbreaking images.An emotive ensemble interpretation to the original orchestral version of the same piece forms the second half of the evening. Here Kiyoko Kimura takes the leading role among the 56 dancers on the stage.The staging proves the ensemble to be one of the best contemporary ballet companies worldwide. Günter Atteln's insightful documentary Soulscapes is a full-length homage to Uwe Scholz showing excerpts of his most important works.The film offers a warm and detailed account of a thoroughly fascinating life and includes some very personal interviews with a man consumed by his art until his last breath.
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Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition & Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring
Booklet Notes:Tracklisting in English, French, German.
This first DVD release of Boulez' most famous interpretations is a must-have!
His ground breaking Debussy interpretations Nocturnes: Fêtes Jeux - Poème dansé and Images freed Debussy from cliché.
Stravinsky's Rite of Spring (1913) and Schoenberg's Accompaniment to a Cinematographic Scene (1930) confirmed Boulez as the authority on 20th century music.
A composer himself, Boulez conducts with precision and a deep understanding of the sound worlds of the composers: he "thinks music".
Includes film footage of Boulez' conducting Images and working on Fêtes Jeux.
"Pierre Boulez is arguably the most influential, and controversial, figure in the world of music today. Boulez is known as the young Turk of post-war avant-garde composition who has steadily transformed himself into one of the most authoritative interpreters of standard 19th and 20th-century music." The Guardian
“These concerts, spanning 30 years, show Boulez's consistency in achieving precision, colour and clarity. The Debussy and Schoenberg performances are classics, the Stravinsky too civilised.” BBC Music Magazine, January 2009 ****
Usually despatched in 3 - 4 working days.
Debussy - Stravinsky
(also available to download from $10.00)
Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)
Belli Piano Duo (Enrico and Olivia Belli)
Mythical Dances, combines two of the most important and virtuoso works for piano four-hands, in the recording debut of the Belli Piano Duo. In his second CD release for Wergo, Enrico Belli again juxtaposes the American composer George Crumb with music from one of the predecessors who influenced him most profoundly. Given that Makrokosmos IV was both conceived and written for piano duet, it makes sense to place it in the context of Igor Stravinsky's version for piano duet of his composition Le Sacre du printemps.The original version for piano duet heard here saw its 1912 Paris première when Stravinsky partnered no less a figure than Claude Debussy.
Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.
Stravinsky - Rite of Spring & Card Game
These ballet scores, written respectively in 1913 and 1937, have continued to sound fresh and new throughout the years and these are tremendously exciting performances from the USSR Symphony Orchestra and Evgeni Svetlanov. Recorded in 1966 and 1970 they were the first recordings made inside Russia of these pieces following the lifting of the ban on Stravinsky’s music.
“Stravinsky was not perhaps natural Svetlanov territory, the but conductor inspires some surprisingly lyrical playing in the slower sections of Rite, whilst Jeu de Cartes is projected with wit and considerable virtuosity.” BBC Music Magazine, December 2008 ****
Stravinsky - L'Oiseau de feu & Le sacre du printemps
Recording dates 7, 8 June, 14 December 2007 (L'oiseau de feu);
15, 16 November 2006, 25 June 2007 (Le sacre du printemps)
“The luminous colours and weightless harmonies of the Firebird sit more comfortably with the cultured Concertgebouw than the hard-edged primitivism of the Rite of Spring. The fragrance of the "Ronde des princesses" with its leading oboe and echoing cello and bassoon lines is exquisite.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2008
“A Jansons performance has all the comfort and security of travelling in a high-class limousine. There's still much to admire, of course, especially the woodwind playing in The Firebird, while The Rite is just a little too well manicured. If you didn't know the ballet, you'd hardly guess that this is a depiction of a pagan ritual that ends in a human sacrifice; one longs for something a bit more visceral, more dangerous.” The Guardian, 4th July 2008 ***
“The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra has always traded on the subtleties of its instrumental sounds, which has made it ideal for interpreting such widely diverse music as Bruckner and Ravel. It puts this distinctive colour to good use in Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, reminding us that there is far more to the work than the crash, bang and wallop of its climactic dances.” The Telegraph, 12th July 2008
Pierre Monteux conducts Rimsky Korsakov, Stravinsky & Borodin
Pierre Monteux (1875-1964) was one of the greatest French conductors of the twentieth-century, his career extending to almost 70 years, a fine musicians admired throughout Europe and the United States. He first came to international pre-eminence when he conducted – as music director of Serge Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes – the world premiere of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring in Paris in May 1913. Within a few years, he was conducting regularly in the United States and, after the end of World War I, in Europe as well. In the USA, he was music director of the Boston Symphony and San Francisco Symphony Orchestras from 1919-24 and 1936-52 respectively, and in this unique collection of finely-restored broadcast performances of Russian music under his direction we can experience again the magic and virtuosity which the universally-loved maestro invariably brought to his performances. A fabulous record.
Live recordings 1943-57
Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.