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Tchaikovsky: Sleeping Beauty; Stravinsky: Firebird

Tchaikovsky / Stravinsky / Monteux
Release Date: 12/10/2013 
Label:  Eloquence   Catalog #: 4807089   Spars Code: DDD 
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

TCHAIKOVSKY The Sleeping Beauty: Excerpts. STRAVINSKY Firebird Suite 1 Pierre Monteux, cond; London SO; 1 Paris Conservatory O DECCA ELOQUENCE 480 7089 (73:10)

In his capacity as chef d’orchestre for Diaghilev’s Ballet Read more Russes , Pierre Monteux presided over the premieres of Petrouchka, Le sacre du printemps, Daphnis et Chloé , and several other ballet scores. Unlike some of his colleagues, he apparently did not completely renounce his experience conducting for dancers, for quite a few of the excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s great score are taken at what one might call “danceable tempos,” including the famous Waltz. On the other hand, the opening March is much too fast as well as cut, and cuts appear in a few subsequent numbers. The sound and the playing are splendid. I never understood how a conductor who seemed so relaxed and undemonstrative on the podium could elicit such fiery performances, at least from American and British orchestras. Unfortunately, the 1919 Firebird Suite isn’t played by one of them and the performance seems tame to me. Given what I think he could do with this music, I was quite frustrated. Fortunately, the Sleeping Beauty excerpts take up considerably more of the CD and they are quite terrific.

FANFARE: James Miller
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