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Rodion Shchedrin: Concertos for Orchestra

Audio Samples

>Shchedrin, Rodion : Concerto for Orchestra no 4 ("Khorovody")
>Shchedrin, Rodion : Concerto for Orchestra no 5 ("Four Russian Songs")
>Shchedrin, Rodion : Kristallene Gusli (Crystal Psaltery), for orchestra

Album Summary

>Shchedrin, Rodion : Concerto for Orchestra no 4 ("Khorovody")
>Shchedrin, Rodion : Concerto for Orchestra no 5 ("Four Russian Songs")
>Shchedrin, Rodion : Kristallene Gusli (Crystal Psaltery), for orchestra
Conductor Ensemble
  • >
Composer

Notes & Reviews:

The distinguished Russian composer, pianist and teacher Rodion Shchedrin writes: "I spent my childhood in the small Russian town of Aleksin, situated on the river Oka, 300 kilometres south of Moscow. My grandfather was an Orthodox priest there. When I was growing up, purely entertaining, commercial music was not yet as ubiquitous as it is now on television, radio, in stations, sea-ports and shops... It was still possible to hear choral songs, the sound of the accordion, the strumming of the balalaika, funeral laments, the cries of shepherds at dawn, coming from beyond a river, enveloped in fog. All that distant and now extinct musical atmosphere of a Russian province is strongly etched in my childhood memories. I think, in all three compositions on this CD, it has found it own nostalgic echo." All three works are world première recordings.

"Shchedrin's colourful concertos for orchestra, well performed and recorded...Kirill Karabits and the BSO do brilliantly with it all, and so, crucially, do the recording engineers in capturing all the delicate and original sounds." -Gramophone

"This is an exciting release of excellent music by one of Russia's greatest living composers... Concerto No. 4, inspired by the folk music of Shchedrin's childhood, contains evocative writing for (among other things) recorder and harpsichord... Shostakovich's famous "tick-tock" percussion from the Fourth and Fifteenth symphonies also features prominently...

Although characterized by some powerfully dissonant outbursts, the progress of the music is always clear and easy to follow, and the mood of both concertos is predominantly lyrical and often quite nostalgic. They are beautiful works. Kristallene Gusli is a brief, atmospheric exercise in mostly high sonorities, and it reveals Shchedrin's ability to write effective "modern" music (by which I mean essentially texture-based or athematic). The performances under the able leadership of Kirill Karabits sound very confident, with the orchestra playing extremely well in music that affords numerous solo opportunities. Shchedrin attended the sessions and pronounced himself fully satisfied with the results. Certainly I see no reason to take issue with his judgment. The sonics are also extremely vivid and remarkably well balanced given some of the tricky juxtapositions of texture and sonority that Shchedrin explores in all of this music. Without question this is a major release from a composer who richly deserves the attention." -ClassicsToday

"This is an exciting release of excellent music by one of Russia's greatest living composers (except that the last time I checked the Shchedrins were residents of Munich). As a composer, Rodion Shchedrin has been cursed by the popularity of his "Carmen" Ballet, but while you won't find the same level of tunefulness (obviously) in his original music, there's a similarly brilliant orchestral imagination at work, and no small level of arresting invention. Concerto No. 4, inspired by the folk music of Shchedrin's childhood, contains evocative writing for (among other things) recorder and harpsichord. Shostakovich's famous "tick-tock" percussion from the Fourth and Fifteenth symphonies also features prominently.

Shchedrin actually quotes a traditional Russian song in the Fifth concerto, but the remaining tunes are all original, and the title suggests the work's form--a simple alternation (with variations) of the basic material. Although characterized by some powerfully dissonant outbursts, the progress of the music is always clear and easy to follow, and the mood of both concertos is predominantly lyrical and often quite nostalgic. They are beautiful works. Kristallene Gusli is a brief, atmospheric exercise in mostly high sonorities, and it reveals Shchedrin's ability to write effective "modern" music (by which I mean essentially texture-based or athematic).

The performances under the able leadership of Kirill Karabits sound very confident, with the orchestra playing extremely well in music that affords numerous solo opportunities. Shchedrin attended the sessions and pronounced himself fully satisfied with the results. Certainly I see no reason to take issue with his judgment. The sonics are also extremely vivid and remarkably well balanced given some of the tricky juxtapositions of texture and sonority that Shchedrin explores in all of this music. Without question this is a major release from a composer who richly deserves the attention."-classicstoday.com

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: The Concert Hall, Lighthouse, Poole, UK (07/01/2009-07/02/2009).



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Works Details

>Shchedrin, Rodion : Concerto for Orchestra no 4 ("Khorovody")
  • Conductor: Kirill Karabits
  • Notes: The Concert Hall, Lighthouse, Poole, UK (07/01/2009-07/02/2009)
  • Running Time: 28 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Concerto
  • Written: 1989

>Shchedrin, Rodion : Concerto for Orchestra no 5 ("Four Russian Songs")
  • Conductor: Kirill Karabits
  • Notes: The Concert Hall, Lighthouse, Poole, UK (07/01/2009-07/02/2009)
  • Running Time: 21 min. 49 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Concerto
  • Written: 1998

>Shchedrin, Rodion : Kristallene Gusli (Crystal Psaltery), for orchestra
  • Conductor: Kirill Karabits
  • Notes: The Concert Hall, Lighthouse, Poole, UK (07/01/2009-07/02/2009)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 40 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary