Strauss, Liszt, Korngold, Busoni, Schreker – Ballet Music – Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Kazuki Yamada (2014)
DSF Stereo DSD64/2.82MHz | Time – 01:05:30 minutes | 2,59 GB | Genre: Classical
Source: ISO SACD | © Pentatone Music B.V. | Front Cover, Booklet
Recorded: Victoria Hall in Geneva, Switzerland in July 2013
The second CD in Pentatone’s dance music series lets you savour the vibrant, famous compositions from the German speaking countries. Connected by the power of music, inspired by fin de siècle, this CD glorifies the influential ballet/theatre/opera music from the interwar period.
There are vigorous performances of famous works and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande is in top form. All of the music is familiar, yet there is always room for conductor Kazuki Yamada and the orchestra to approach it with verve, inviting listeners to remember what they enjoyed so much about it in the first place.
This is a recent release on the Pentatone label of a well-played collection of dance music with conductor Kazuki Yamada and the Orchestra de la Suisse Romande. It’s a dramatic and dynamic recording in 5.0 surround, and well- designed to get listeners engaged.
Many of the pieces performed will already reside in many collectors’ collections, but the performance and recording are noteworthy enough to give this disc more than a passing listen.
The only outlier here is the all-too-often passed-over Erich Wolfgang Korngold. We get a fine performance of Straussiana, composed in 1953. Korngold lived in two worlds, as a film composer and a classical composer, with noteworthy scores for some Errol Flynn films, and he is noted for a symphony and some concertos. Straussiana resulted from an American commission for a youth orchestra, and the work is a well-scored tribute to Strauss and beautifully rendered by the Suisse Romande.
The other lesser known work is Ein Tanzspeil by Franz Schreker. Schreker mainly composed operas. During his peak, which coincided with the peak of the Weimar Republic, he was often performed and compared to Richard Strauss, but over time he lost favor as anti-Semitism rose in Germany. His dance music is a welcome addition to this disc.
The recording was done at the Victoria hall in Geneva, Switzerland. It is an outstanding recording with orchestra balances, extended frequency response, and respect for the acoustic space all done perfectly. The bass is tight without ever sounding tubby, and the strings are smooth and never grating.
In the early days of stereo this collation might have been billed as a ‘dance spectacular’. It’s a fine collection, and gets enough off the well trodden path to be interesting. Recommended! -John Sunier, Audiophile Audition
Richard Strauss (1864-1949)
1. Salome, Op. 54, TrV 215: Dance of the Seven Veils 09:46
Franz Liszt (1811-1886)
2. Der Tanz in der Dorfschenke, S110/R427, Mephisto Waltz No. 1 11:30
Erich Wolfgang Korngold (1897-1957)
3. Straussiana (1953) Polka – Mazurka – Waltz 07:22
Ferruccio Busoni (1866-1924)
4. Tanzwalzer, Op. 53 (In memory of Johann Strauss) 12:07
Franz Schreker (1878-1934)
Ein Tanzspiel (1908, orchestrated 1920)
5. I. Sarabande (Lento, con expressione) 03:31
6. II. Menuett (Allegro scherzando) 03:10
7. III. Madrigal (Andante) 03:24
8. IV. Gavotte (Allegro festivo) 02:27
Richard Strauss (1864-1949)
Der Rosenkavalier, Op. 59, TrV 227
9. Waltz Sequence No. 1 (Erste Walzerfolge) 12:11
Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (OSR)
Kazuki Yamada, conductor