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Respighi: La Boutique Fantasque; Britten / 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 
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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

Soirées musicales, Op. 9 by Benjamin Britten
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1936; England 
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. 
Matinées musicales, Op. 24 by Benjamin Britten
Conductor:  Richard Bonynge
Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1941; England 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Rossini/Respighi and Britten/Rossini; What Fun! May 13, 2015 By David M. (Winona, MN) See All My Reviews "These recording shows how Rossini's master work from "Sins of Old Age", an enticing ballet, "La Boutique fantasque" has been arranged by Respight; others who arranged these were Liszt, Wagner, and Britten. In this selection, we hear how Britten arranged Rossini's"Soirees musicales" and "Mantinees musicales". It would be most interesting is see side-by-side how not only Respighi and Britten reworked Rossini, but also how Wagner and Liszt did as well. No matter the arranger, the brilliance of Rossini shines through. This is ballet music that moves the feet as well as the mind and heart, creating the concept that Rossini didn't decline but only matured." Report Abuse
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