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Borodin & Mussorgsky: Orchestral Works

Mussorgsky / Borodin / Slatkin / St Louis Symphony
Release Date: 02/18/1997 
Label:  Vox   Catalog #: 7208   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Modest MussorgskyAlexander Borodin
Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Throughout Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, Leonard Slatkin takes special care with presenting the music's vivid and vibrantly colored characterizations -- here brought tellingly to life by the St. Louis Symphony's alert and highly polished playing. By cultivating a certain rawness in the brass (especially in Bydlo), and a spiky quality in the woodwinds (Tuileries is deliciously tart), along with letting the percussion play full-out, Slatkin makes Ravel's orchestral transcription sound more Russian than it usually does. Best of all is the Great Gate of Kiev, where Slatkin generates a ceremonial splendor worthy of Mussorgsky's Boris Godunov.


The remaining items include Slatkin's colorful and exciting renditions
Read more of Night of Bald Mountain (some tam-tam!), and three excerpts from Khovanshchina, including the blissful Prelude, the pensive Entr'Acte, and the exotic Dance of the Persian Slaves. Borodin's atmospheric In the Steppes of Central Asia concludes the program with understated elegance and poetry. The spacious and reverberant recording (unusual for an Aubort/Nickrenz production) presents the orchestra with impressive clarity and dynamic impact, though the CD booklet's claim of digital origin seems unlikely given the 1975 recording date. A winner, and a bargain to boot.
--Victor Carr, Jr, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Pictures at an Exhibition for Orchestra (orchestrated by Ravel) by Modest Mussorgsky
Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1874/1922; Russia 
Date of Recording: 1975 
Length: 28 Minutes 41 Secs. 
2.
Night on the Bare Mountain by Modest Mussorgsky
Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1866; Russia 
3.
Khovanshchina: Act 4 Prelude "Entr'acte" by Modest Mussorgsky
Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1872-1880; Russia 
4.
In the steppes of central Asia by Alexander Borodin
Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Russia 
5.
Khovanshchina: Dance of the Persian Slaves by Modest Mussorgsky
Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1872-1880; Russia 
6.
Khovanshchina: Act 1 Prelude "Dawn on the Moscow River" by Modest Mussorgsky
Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1872-1880; Russia 

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