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Rachmaninov: Symphonic Dances; The Bells / Luba Organasova; Dmytro Popov; Mikhail Petrenko. Rattle

Audio Samples

>Rachmaninov, Sergei : The Bells, choral symphony for soprano, tenor, baritone, chorus & orchestra, Op. 35
>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Symphonic Dances, Op. 45

Album Summary

>Rachmaninov, Sergei : The Bells, choral symphony for soprano, tenor, baritone, chorus & orchestra, Op. 35
>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Symphonic Dances, Op. 45
Performer Conductor Ensembles Composer

Notes & Reviews:

In this exciting new recording of Rachmaninov's Symphonic Dances and The Bells, Sir Simon Rattle and his renown orchestra, the Berliner Philharmoniker, perform these two late masterpieces. Toward the end of his life, Rachmaninov said of The Bells "I worked on this composition with feverish ardor; and it remains of all my works the one I love the most." Of the Symphonic Dances, written shortly before his death, he said "I don't know how it happened, it must have been my last spark." This recording offers a rare chance to hear Sir Simon Rattle's interpretations of these great works.

BBC Music Magazine, November 2013
This Bells may be unsurpassable...The three soloists are superb, even if Dmytro Popov is a more heroic tenor than usual and Luba Orgonasova plays firm matriarch at the wedding rather than young bride. Mikhail Petrenko's bass is another quality voice, prefaced and mirrored by the most human cor anglais solo I've ever heard....a remarkable achievement.

Gramophone Magazine, October 2013
Lucid detail, refined shaping, polished instrumental solos and a shrewd way with texture and rhythmic ebb and flow contribute to an interpretation as astutely conceived as it is vital in execution.

MusicWeb International, 22nd September 2013
Rattle's account of The Bells is very impressive: he has three excellent soloists and the choral and orchestral contributions are first class...I'm equally taken with his reading of the Symphonic Dances...the Berlin playing is simply fabulous...These are two of Rachmaninov's greatest works and Simon Rattle has done them proud with this exciting disc.

Sunday Times, 1st September 2013
[The Bells] was an astonishing first for the orchestra, which is perhaps why it sounds so fresh-minted here...The Symphonic Dances get sonic luxury from the Berliners. It's hard to imagine the slow movement's famous alto-sax solo more hauntingly played.

The Arts Desk, 24th August 2013
The choral singing [in The Bells] combines agility and heft - the third movement terrifies. Good soloists too - notably bass Mikhail Petrenko. Rattle's characteristic ear for detail rarely derails the forward momentum...Rattle's new Symphonic Dances take a while to work their magic...But you're slowly won over.

The Guardian, 15th August 2013
[The Bells'] vivid palette of orchestral colours suits him and the Berlin Philharmonic, while careful engineering eases the problems of balance...Rattle doesn't always give the music its head in a way that a Russian conductor might, but the performance is carefully calibrated and full of brilliantly focussed detail.

The Times, 24th August 2013
Rattle keeps luxuriating, basking in the long-legged melodies, idling lovingly over phrases, wrapped in a full and warm recording. The more brittle elements in rhythm, gesture and orchestration have a hard time getting heard. This isn't a problem with the later recording of the companion work, the choral symphony The Bells.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Philharmonie, Berlin (2010-11-04_2010-11-05&2012-).


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Works Details

>Rachmaninov, Sergei : The Bells, choral symphony for soprano, tenor, baritone, chorus & orchestra, Op. 35
  • Performer: Dmytro Popov
  • Conductor: Simon Rattle
  • Ensemble: Berlin Philharmonic
  • Notes: Philharmonie, Berlin (11/08/2012-11/11/2012)
  • Running Time: 35 min. 3 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1913

>Rachmaninov, Sergei : Symphonic Dances, Op. 45
  • Conductor: Simon Rattle
  • Notes: Philharmonie, Berlin (11/04/2010-11/05/2010)
  • Running Time: 35 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Written: 1940