WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Khachaturian: Gayaneh & Spartacus Ballet Suites / Svetlanov, Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra

Release Date: 04/24/2012 
Label:  Brilliant Classics   Catalog #: 9256  
Composer:  Aram Khachaturian
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Back Order: Usually ships in 2 to 3 weeks.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Along with Shostakovich and Prokofiev, Khachaturian was one of the most famous and celebrated composers of the Soviet Union. Born in Tbilisi, Georgia, his earliest musical influences were the folk music of Georgia and of his ancestral homeland, Armenia. His ballet Gayaneh, composed in 1942, tapped into this passion for his Armenian heritage; set on a collective farm, its story is concerned with the triumph of love and loyalty to the Motherland over treason – themes that would keep Stalin happy. Khachaturian’s later ballet Spartacus, written in 1956, took the famous story of the Greek slave turned gladiator and his defeat of the Roman general Crassus as its basis. Composed in the dying years of Stalin’s rule, Khachaturian and his audiences Read more were drawn to the story’s theme of resistance against tyranny.

Several movements from these ballets have taken on a life outside the original ballet suites – for example, the Sabre Dance from Gayaneh and the famous Adagio from Spartacus – ensuring that these wonderful and colourfully scored ballet suites have become firm favourites in the concert hall.

• Recording made in 2000.
• Includes booklet notes.
• ‘The Bolshoi orchestra are obviously completely at home in this repertoire, and Svetlanov’s ear for orchestral detail is as sure as ever. How beautifully he handles the tapering down at the end of the ‘Dance of the Nymphs’ (from Spartacas), while the opening of the ‘Dance of the Young Girls of Gadès’ brings a slow, subtle crescendo... The famous ‘Adagio of Spar tacus and Phr ygia’ has never sounded more touchingly refined on record and the climax does not disappoint. In Gayaneh there is a beguilingly sinuous sophistication in ‘Ayesha’s dance’, and the ‘Lullaby’ and ‘Gayeneh’s Adagio’ are beautifully played, creating much delicacy of texture.’ Gramophone, April 2001. Read less

Works on This Recording

Spartacus Suite no 2 by Aram Khachaturian
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1955-1957; USSR 
Gayaneh: Suite by Aram Khachaturian
Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1943; USSR 

Sound Samples

Gayane: Dance of the Rose Maidens
Gayane: Ayesha's Dance
Gayane: Dance of the Highlanders
Gayane: Lullaby
Gayane: Noune's Dance
Gayane: Armen's Var
Gayane: 's Adagio
Gayane: Lezghinka
Gayane: Dance with Tambourines
Gayane: Sabre Dance
Spartacus: Introduction – Dance of the Nymphs
Spartacus: Aegina's Dance
Spartacus: Scene and Dance with Crotalums
Spartacus: Adagio of and Phrygia
Spartacus: Dance of the Gaditan Maidens

Customer Reviews

Be the first to review this title
Review This Title