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Dallapiccola: Marsia, Due Pezzi, Etc / Noseda, Et Al


Release Date: 11/23/2004 
Label:  Chandos   Catalog #: 10258   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Luigi Dallapiccola
Performer:  James Ehnes
Conductor:  Gianandrea Noseda
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 13 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews


These pieces from Luigi Dallapiccola’s prime have a glittering, caressing beauty that masks an extraordinary musical mind. Dallapiccola (1904-75) arguably was the most remarkable of an important group of 20th-century Italian composers (Malipiero, Casella, Rieti, Petrassi, Ghedini, among others) who emphasized instrumental rather than operatic work. Ironically, in Dallapiccola’s case he was to become most famous for his moving opera, Il Prigioniero, written after he had escaped the Nazis by hiding in the woods; but it may be that free of the demands and limits of the theater, his instrumental and choral pieces have more individuality and power. He was the first Italian to master the 12-tone
Read more technique of Schoenberg, with some notions of his own. But like Alban Berg, Dallapiccola often wrote in a lyrical style that seemed to suggest a more songful quality than many other serialists wanted in their work. Though he is careful and rigorous technically, the overall sound of his work is gorgeous, and he is an inventor of fugitive but haunting melody.

The most imposing work here is the Variations for Orchestra (1952). Dallapiccola is quite strict in using serial techniques, starting with a carefully managed tone row. However, now and then he breaks the row to spell out the name B-A-C-H, in honor of J.S. Bach, one of the greatest masters of variation technique. Dallapiccola’s counterpoint is breathtaking in its effortless complexity, yet the segments have a wide expressive range. In both the Variations and Piccola Musica Notturna (from 1954, the title is a tribute to Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik) Dallapiccola is paying homage to his friend, Anton Webern. His sound world, however, is his own, and the ability to allow sighing, sweet melodies to arise and subside into a beautiful well of soft but fascinating harmonic and instrumental gestures is hypnotic.

In Due Pezzi (1947), Dallapiccola demonstrates that serial music can be utterly alluring, but, as is often true in his music, there is a subtle glance backward at the late Renaissance—Carlo Gesualdo with his spiky chromatic harmonies haunts this piece. The Fragments from the ballet Marsia (1947) are reminiscent of a much younger Dallapiccola’s adulation of Debussy. The five movements are almost a lexicon of expressive choices, from caressing to ferocious, that a 20th-century composer can make, held together by subtle motifs, varied, juggled, turned upside down.

Tartiniana (1951) superficially seems to be in the style of Stravinsky’s Pulcinella. (Dallapiccola’s older contemporary, Casella, in his Paganiniana and Scarlattiana uses a more obviously Stravinskian style). This is a “freely” tonal work—the actual key of a given section is mysterious right up until the final, sometimes unexpected chord. From that tension, Dallapiccola derives a piece that combines the melodic sweetness of the selected Tartini tunes for violin (made more fascinating through artful fragmentation) with arresting, sometimes thorny, sometimes lovely harmonic procedures. It is evocatively scored for chamber orchestra without violins for maximum contrast with the solo violin line, skillfully played here by James Ehnes.

The BBC Philharmonic plays with virtuosity, and although Gianandrea Noseda is rather careful, his work is admirable for detail and harmonic insight. The sound is spectacular.

Albert Innaurato, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Episodes (3) from "Marsia" by Luigi Dallapiccola
Conductor:  Gianandrea Noseda
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1949; Italy 
Venue:  New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester 
Length: 20 Minutes 4 Secs. 
Notes: New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester (04/14/2004 - 04/16/2004) 
2.
Pieces (2) for Orchestra by Luigi Dallapiccola
Conductor:  Gianandrea Noseda
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1947; Italy 
Venue:  New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester 
Length: 12 Minutes 17 Secs. 
Notes: New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester (04/14/2004 - 04/16/2004) 
3.
Variazioni for Orchestra by Luigi Dallapiccola
Conductor:  Gianandrea Noseda
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1954; Italy 
Venue:  New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester 
Length: 16 Minutes 34 Secs. 
Notes: New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester (04/14/2004 - 04/16/2004) 
4.
Piccola musica notturna by Luigi Dallapiccola
Conductor:  Gianandrea Noseda
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1954/1961; Italy 
Venue:  New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester 
Length: 8 Minutes 53 Secs. 
Notes: New Broadcast House Studio 7, Manchester (04/14/2004 - 04/16/2004) 
5.
Tartiniana for Violin and Orchestra by Luigi Dallapiccola
Performer:  James Ehnes (Violin)
Conductor:  Gianandrea Noseda
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 

Sound Samples

Tartiniana: I. Larghetto, molto espressivo, ma semplice -
Tartiniana: II. Allegro misurato
Tartiniana: III. Molto sostenuto (Tempo I) - Piu mosso e scorrevole (Tempo II) - Tempo I, molto sereno - Tempo II - Tempo I (funebre) -
Tartiniana: IV. Allegro assai, ma non precipitato - (A la musette)
2 Pezzi: No. 1. Sarabanda
2 Pezzi: No. 2. Fanfara e Fuga
Piccola musica notturna
Frammenti sinfonici: Danza Magica -
Frammenti sinfonici: Ostinato -
Frammenti sinfonici: Sostenuto, ma deciso (Recitando) - Danza di Apollo -
Frammenti sinfonici: Ultima Danza di Marsia -
Frammenti sinfonici: La Morte di Marsia
Variazioni: Variazione 1: Quasi lento, misterioso - Appena piu scorrevole - Tempo I - (Tempo II) - Tempo I -
Variazioni: Variazione 2: Allegro, con fuoco -
Variazioni: Variazione 3: Mosso, scorrevole -
Variazioni: Variazione 4: Tranquillamente mosso -
Variazioni: Variazione 6: Molto lento, con espressione parlente -
Variazioni: Variazione 7: Andantino amoroso -
Variazioni: Variazione 8: Allegro con violenza -
Variazioni: Variazione 9: Affettuoso, cullante -
Variazioni: Variazione 10: Grave Ancora piu lento, misterioso - Grave (come prima) -
Variazioni: Variazione 11: Molto lento, fantastico

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