WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Finn Mortensen: Symphony, Pezzo Orchestrale, Evolution, Per Orchestra

Mortensen / Muchner Rundfunkorchester / Mikkelsen
Release Date: 01/31/2012 
Label:  Simax   Catalog #: 1306  
Composer:  Finn Mortensen
Conductor:  Terje Mikkelsen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Radio Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews


Finn Mortensen didn't write very much music over the course of his relatively short life (1922-83), and a good bit of it has been recorded. The Symphony, for my money the best work in its genre by a Norwegian composer, appeared previously on this same label documenting the early partnership of the Oslo Philharmonic and Mariss Jansons. At that time the orchestra was nothing special; neither were the sonics. This newcomer is superior in all respects.

The work takes Hindemith as its starting point, and is beautifully written and scored. Three of its four movements employ a clear sonata form, while the finale is a brilliant quadruple fugue. The second subject of the first movement, a
Read more triadic theme similar in feel to the principal idea of Barber's Second Essay, returns as the fourth fugue subject, bringing the work to a majestic conclusion completely free of bombastic straining after effect.

After the symphony Mortensen turned to free atonality (Pezzo Orchestrale), strict serialism (Evolution), and finally a bit of everything (Per Orchestra). It really doesn't matter which style he preferred; his writing is so lucid and purposeful that even his thorniest music conveys an unerring sense of rightness. You listen, and understand.

These performances certainly make a great case for the cause. Terje Mikkelsen gets really fine playing from his Munich orchestra, whether they are making the strange sounds required in the avant-garde works, or in the maniacal fugal finale of the symphony (Mortensen's fugues always sound slightly insane, but in a good way). For contemporary music fans, this superbly recorded release is a must.

--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
Read less

Works on This Recording

1. Symphony no 1, Op. 5 by Finn Mortensen
Conductor:  Terje Mikkelsen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Radio Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
2. Pezzo Orchestrale by Finn Mortensen
Conductor:  Terje Mikkelsen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Radio Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
3. Evolution by Finn Mortensen
Conductor:  Terje Mikkelsen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Radio Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
4. Per Orchestra by Finn Mortensen
Conductor:  Terje Mikkelsen
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Radio Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 

Customer Reviews

Be the first to review this title
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook