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The Anthology Of Russian Symphonic Music - Glazunov, Vol. 2


Release Date: 02/10/2009 
Label:  Svetlanov Foundation   Catalog #: 27-32   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Number of Discs: 6 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 6 Hours 45 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

All the music is diverting even when none too serious,

As usual with Svetlanov re-releases we are in what Blues shouter Big Joe Turner would invariably call a ‘World of Trouble’. This relates to the provenance of these performances, which are loosely dated to between the years 1961-90. Furthermore I can’t find any reference to the orchestra(s) Svetlanov conducts in the entire box. I don’t pretend to be any kind of expert in the sub-stratum of the Svetlanov Discography but I think a few things are clear. These are all, so far as I can see, commercial recordings, and all are studio-made. Most are made with the USSR State, though he did record ballet with the Bolshoi – principally Raymonda which is on a companion set. Lady
Read more Soubrette which occupies the whole of disc six is currently also available on Melodiya MELCD1000020; the orchestral fantasies The Sea, Forest and the Oriental Rhapsody (CD 3) are also to be found on Melodiya MELCD1000156. I believe The Sea is also on SVSEA003 where it’s coupled with Debussy and Ciurlionis’s works of the same title. If you want the Ballet Suite and the Characteristic Suite you can find them on Melodiya MELCD1000160. The Waltzes are on a two CD compilation disc MELCD1001319.

So far so duplicatory. What’s really not at stake is the quality of the performances. The First Overture on Greek Themes sounds as much Hassidic as Ionian to these ears whereas the second is rather more robust and amusing. The noble memorial that is To the Memory of a Hero is richly carved in this performance. The Lyrical Poem is pliant and full of bel canto lyricism. Svetlanov could do Stenka Razin as well as anyone – it’s powerful and glowering in his hands and shimmers with a painterly haze. I think you’d have to be deep into Glazunov’s pocket to get too worked up by the Characteristic Suite which is a generic pot-boiler though the Pastorale has a real charm. The second of the Op.14 Pieces for Orchestra is a Reverie Orientale and it displays Rimsky saturation, which Svetlanov brings out in all its salient ripeness. Don’t overlook the Op.18 Mazurka – it’s a good example of Glazunov’s handling of established forms in a vivacious way.

The Forest is a fantasia for orchestra, lush in a Rimsky way once more, and with forestry winds to the fore. The brass is forceful, the birdcalls evocatively insistent and there’s plenty of vegetative warmth in the splendid orchestration. A harp unleashes The Sea, a work of suitable turbulence and alternating becalmed tension well deserving a concert hearing. The Oriental Rhapsody is an altogether more opulent affair, exotic, with sweeping dance patterns, percussive interjections, and the sultry eyed stare of the East.

The fourth disc is a collection of medium sized pieces. The Wedding Procession is Brahmsian – one thinks of the Haydn Variations – and better than the pleasantly unmemorable Slavonic Fantasy. Spring is verdant and From Darkness to Light by far the most serious minded of them – ranging from unease to refined fulfilment. Chopiniana is a trusty favourite, trustily dispatched; crisply too. The series of concert waltzes attest to his balletic abilities and ever polished assurance. The final disc gives us Lady-Soubrette which is based on paintings by Watteau. Neo-baroque vies with Dvo?ák for some of the time, though there’s a Handel-Beecham feel to, say, the Sarabande in Scene I. The dances are especially captivating – try the Short Peasant’s Dance in Scene XI for instance.

The best of the music is contained in disc 3, the strong fantasia/rhapsody triptych. But all the music is diverting even when inessential and none too serious. As long as the question of attribution is resolved satisfaction is guaranteed. For Glazunov new comers though I think these six discs – only available in a box - should be selectively filleted elsewhere.

-- Jonathan Woolf, MusicWeb International
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Works on This Recording

1.
Overture on 3 Greek Themes no 1 in G minor, Op. 3 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1882; Russia 
2.
Overture on Greek Folk Themes no 2 in D major, Op. 6 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1883; Russia 
3.
Elegy, Op. 8 "To the memory of a hero" by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; Russia 
4.
Lyric Poem, Op. 12 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884-1887; Russia 
5.
Stenka Razin, Op. 13 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; Russia 
6.
Characteristic Suite, Op. 9 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884-1887; Russia 
7.
Serenade for Orchestra no 1 in A major, Op. 7 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1883; Russia 
8.
Serenade for Orchestra no 2 in F major, Op. 11 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884; Russia 
9.
Pieces (2) for Cello and Orchestra, Op. 20 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887-1888; Russia 
10.
Mazurka in G major, Op. 18 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888; Russia 
11.
Characteristic Dance, Op. 68 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1899; Russia 
12.
Song of the Volga Boatmen by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1905; Russia 
13.
Fantasy for Orchestra in C sharp minor, Op. 19 "The Forest" by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887; Russia 
14.
Oriental Rhapsody, Op. 29 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1889; Russia 
15.
Wedding Procession, Op. 21 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1889; Russia 
16.
Slavic holiday, Op. 26a by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888; Russia 
17.
Spring, Op. 34 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1891; Russia 
18.
Triumphal March in E flat major, Op. 40 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Russia 
19.
Carnival Overture, Op. 45 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Russia 
20.
Solemn Procession by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1907; Russia 
21.
Fantasy for Orchestra, Op. 53 "From darkness to light" by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Russia 
22.
Chopiniana, Op. 46 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1893; Russia 
23.
Concert Waltz no 1 in D major, Op. 47 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1893; Russia 
24.
Concert Waltz no 2 in F major, Op. 51 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Russia 
25.
Polonaise by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: Russia 
26.
Les ruses d'amour, Op. 61 by Alexander Glazunov
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1898; Russia 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Anthology of Russian symphony music February 9, 2013 By James Kirkish (PLACERVILLE, CA) See All My Reviews "Very nice album. Recording volume a little low, I have to turn it up a little but very well done and many nice compositions." Report Abuse
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