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Janacek: Sinfonietta, Taras Bulba, Concertino / Kubelik, Firkusny, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra


Release Date: 08/04/2009 
Label:  Eloquence   Catalog #: 4800643   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Leos Janácek
Performer:  Rudolf Firkusny
Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews



JANÁ?EK Sinfonietta. Taras Bulba. Concertino 1 Rafael Kubelík, cond; Rudolf Firkusny (pn); 1 Bavarian RSO DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON ELOQUENCE 480 0643 (60:51)


Like Ronald Reagan, the great Moravian composer might be wondering: “Where’s the rest of me?” Just the Concertino, to represent the excellent set these artists made Read more of all his concerted pieces for piano. That’s not a complaint, though. These Eloquence transfers sound just great, and this is the best available single disc introduction to the composer’s orchestral work. If you don’t have these performances, then buy it while you can. The competition includes Kubelík’s much earlier Decca recording of the Sinfonietta, even more direct in feeling, and also on Eloquence.


While An?erl and Talich are essential references (and Mackerras as a fine sounding alternative), no one else has this coupling. The coupling matters because it contrasts the sheer impact of the composer’s wild emotional lateral thinking, with his most quirky side heard in the Concertino. This pianist made far too few recordings (I was raised on his Beethoven, whose Fifth Symphony invades the Con moto movement of the Concertino). Here, in dryish sound, he gives a weighty, virtuoso account of the solo part, with Kubelík at his modernist best. The fine Crossley/London Sinfonietta set possessed a tad more fantasy, but less local color. The Sinfonietta loses a lot in any recording, and needs to be heard live. But yet another Eloquence reissue comes strongly recommended.


FANFARE: Paul Ingram
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Works on This Recording

1. Taras Bulba by Leos Janácek
Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1915-1918; Brno, Czech Republic 
2. Sinfonietta by Leos Janácek
Performer:  Rudolf Firkusny (Piano)
Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1926; Brno, Czech Republic 
3. Concertino for Piano, 2 Violins, Viola, Clarinet, Horn and Bassoon by Leos Janácek
Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1925; Brno, Czech Republic 

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