Notes & Reviews:
The definitive 20th-century music series. 50 releases planned, featuring 50 iconic works, plus "fillers". 50 works you must know to understand the music of the 20th century. Coming in five waves of ten releases, one release from each decade of the century. Mentored by leading writer and critic NIGEL SIMEONE, who is responsible for the new booklet notes, which set out the context, introducing the composer and the work. Plus special 20C website with texts, timeline, music and pictures, and Nigel Simeone's" My 20th Century", plus blog. 20C - The perfect introduction to the music of an often turbulent and convulsive era. 50 must-hear works to understand the 20th century.
The series is presented in innovative, environmentally friendly digipacks (Mintpacks) - no plastic apart from the CDs themselves, and coming in at a very competitive price. Series curation by leading writer and critic NIGEL SIMEONE, who is responsible for the new booklet notes, which set out the context, introducing the composer and the work, quotes by composers, contributors and critics.
The booklet presents timeline of 20th-Century musical premieres. The striking graphic is printed on matte card, the whole is intended to resemble book (work) presentation, with the emphasis on the music rather than the artists. Booklets include new essays.
Herbert Blomstedt's interpretations of [Hindemith's] music, while always good, have improved as his traversal of the orchestral works has progressed from the early days of his tenure in San Francisco. The Gewandhaus Orchestra sounds absolutely right in these pieces: the strings rich and dark, the brass confident but never strident or too "blatty" in Salvation Army Band style. This makes something special out of the opening of the Serena, not to mention its marvelous, strings-only third movement. Similarly, Blomstedt launches the brassy "Harmony of the World" with effortless grandeur and propels the music irresistibly forward with none of the rhythmic clunkiness that always seems a risk in late Hindemith. The last movement passacaglia, in turn, rises like some vast monolith from the depths of the orchestra and culminates in a huge climax which, aided by spectacular sound, allows the joyful pealing of bells to cut right through the instrumental pile-up at the end.
Recording information: Gewandhaus zu Leipzig (06/08/1997-06/09/1997); Sofiensaal, Vienna (06/08/1997-06/09/1997); Gewandhaus zu Leipzig (06/24/1964-06/26/1964); Sofiensaal, Vienna (06/24/1964-06/26/1964).
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Aaron Copland: Billy the Kid; El Salon México; Hear Ye! Hear Ye! / Zinman, Knussen
Sergey Prokofiev: Piano Sonatas 6-8 / Vladimir Ashkenazy, piano
Xenakis: Synaphaï; Aroura; Antikhthon; Keqrops / Geoffrey Madge, piano; Elgar Howarth; Roger Woodward
Janacek: Sinfonietta; Taras Bulba; Lachian Dances / Mackerras; Huybrechts
K. Szymanowski: Symphony Nos. 2 & 3; Violin Concerto / Ryszard Karczykowsk, tenor; Chantal Juillet, violin; Kenneth Jewell Chorale; Detroit SO; Doráti; Montréal SO; Dutoit
Górecki: Symphony No. 3, "Symphony of Sorrowful Songs" / Joanna Kozlowska, soprano; Warsaw PO; Kord
Bernstein: West Side Story / Te Kanawa, Carreras, Troyanos, Ollmann, Horne; Israel PO; Bernstein
Philip Glass: 'Heroes' Symphony, Violin Concerto / Gidon Kremer, violin; Vienna Philharmonic; von Dohnányi; American Composers Orchestra; Davies
Works DetailsHindemith, Paul : Symphony, "Die Harmonie der Welt" (The Music of the Spheres)
- Conductor: Herbert Blomstedt
- Ensemble: Gewandhausorchester Leipzig
- Notes: Gewandhaus zu Leipzig (06/08/1997-06/09/1997)
- Running Time: 35 min. 8 sec.
- Period Time: Modern
- Form: Orchestral
- Written: 1951
Hindemith, Paul : Octet, for clarinet, bassoon, horn, violin, 2 violas, cello & bass
- Ensemble: Vienna Octet
- Notes: Sofiensaal, Vienna (06/24/1964-06/26/1964)
- Running Time: 26 min. 41 sec.
- Period Time: Modern
- Written: 1958