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Debussy: La Mer, Nocturnes, Etc / Jarvi, Cincinnati So

Release Date: 03/22/2005 
Label:  Telarc   Catalog #: 80617   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Claude Debussy
Performer:  Randolph Bowman
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Symphony OrchestraMay Festival Female Chorus
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 4 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Tonal beauty is the overriding principle in these Debussy performances as Paavo Järvi draws gorgeous sounds from the Cincinnati Symphony. Strings shimmer throughout La Mer, while woodwinds flutter about like so many butterflies--effects most pronounced in Jeux de vagues. Järvi takes to heart Debussy's description of the work as a suggestion of the sea, coloring everything in pastel shades and treating the brass as accents in the sonic picture, not the bold declamations that other conductors have done. Percussion receives similar treatment, with the quieter moments more pronounced than the loud. The tam-tam appears in the background at the close of From Dawn to Noon on the Sea, allowing the striking and rarely-heard bass pizzicatos Read more (real "slaps") to emerge from the texture. Some listeners may prefer a more extrovert approach, but Järvi's subtler way is just as valid. And make no mistake, there's still plenty of punch in his performance, especially in Dialogue of the Wind and the Sea.

In Nocturnes Järvi achieves that rare balance of tempo and timbre that creates Nuages' hypnotic effect--no time seems to have passed by the movement's end. The slightly understated brass in Fêtes evokes the atmospheric flashes Debussy was after--but most remarkable is Sirènes, where Järvi's fluid motion, combined with the orchestra's lively playing and the soothing chant of the wordless chorus evokes an atmosphere of almost palpable pleasure.

You really don't want it to end, but it does, followed by a sparkling rendition of Debussy's poignant Berceuse heroique, which I would program not last, but second, after Järvi's luscious yet delicate Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun. The sound is typical of Telarc's Cincinnati recordings: solid presence and realism, with wide dynamic range--qualities that only reveal themselves at high playing levels. Boulez and the neighboring Clevelanders still hold the palm for La Mer, but Järvi's disc is a fine achievement in its own right, especially for the Nocturnes, one that I suspect will sound even finer on SACD. [3/15/2005]
--Victor Carr Jr, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

Prélude ŕ l'aprčs-midi d'un faune by Claude Debussy
Performer:  Randolph Bowman (Flute)
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1892-1894; France 
Notes: Composition written: France (1892 - 1894). 
Nocturnes (3) for Orchestra by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra,  May Festival Female Chorus
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1897-1899; France 
La mer by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1903-1905; France 
Berceuse heroďque by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1914; France 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 One of my best Debussy recordings January 15, 2016 By David B. (La Honda, CA) See All My Reviews "Jarvi and the CSO together with Telarc have produced a recording of these popular pieces that I play over and over again. Perhaps it is because I imagine this is how these works should be presented. The recording, done in DSD is superb, I only wish Telarc would release it in a higher resolution format than CD. The May festival chorus and Robert Porco have added to a wonderful Sirenes termination of the Nocturnes. I will look no further in the catalogs for these works; I'm happy." Report Abuse
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