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Britten: Soirees Musicales, Matinees Musicales / Bonynge


Release Date: 09/11/2007 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 410139   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Benjamin BrittenOttorino Respighi
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Low Stock: Currently 3 or fewer in stock. Usually ships in 24 hours, unless stock becomes depleted.  

This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

In those far off heady early days of the mono LP I used to take around a portable Decca record player (which conveniently plugged into a radio of that period) and with it I took the now deleted Frank Phillips/Malko ten-inch Decca record of Peter and the Wolf (LX3003, 3/50—I still have it and it still sounds remarkably realistic) and the deleted Ansermet/Decca disc of La boutique fantasque (LXT2555, 3/51) which, even more than Petrushka, demonstrated for me the magic that this conductor could distil from the world of ballet music, and the unique expertise of the Decca engineers in capturing orchestral bloom, glowing colours and vivid detail—helped by the conductor of course.

This new Compact Disc of La boutique has comparable
Read more brilliance and atmosphere and shows that the current Decca team have not lost that special touch. Against the silent background those opening bass pizzicatos give a frisson of pleasure, and throughout the orchestral colours glitter and glow, while one is swept along by the verve of the music-making. Perhaps at times Bonynge presses on a little too insistently, but the impact and sparkle of the recording are irresistible. (It is perhaps a fraction too bright, but so spectacularly engulfing that few will grumble.) The Britten/Rossini suites are only marginally less entertaining and superbly crafted. Incidentally, this Compact Disc plays for just over an hour, so it should please those who demand time value for money. I'd rather have 40 minutes of excellence than an hour of indifference. But this issue has it both ways, quantity as well as quality.

Compared with the original LP and cassette (both excellent), I must quote a much-used phrase and say that one has the impression of the thinnest of veils being lifted from the orchestral images. A demonstration recording indeed.

-- Ivan March, Gramophone [11/1983]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Soirées musicales, Op. 9 by Benjamin Britten
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1936; England 
2.
La boutique fantasque by Ottorino Respighi
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1919; Rome, Italy 
Notes: This ballet is based on themes by Gioacchino Rossini. 
3.
Matinées musicales, Op. 24 by Benjamin Britten
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1941; England 

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