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Pärt: Summa, Etc / Paavo Järvi, Estonian National So


Release Date: 02/11/2003 
Label:  Virgin Classics   Catalog #: 45501   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 13 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This disc could just as well be entitled 'The Essential Pärt', so far as the non-choral works are concerned anyway. There are now many alternative versions of most of these pieces, including the symphony on DG or Naxos and who knows how many different versions of the various permutations of Fratres. However, the disc in question has rather more claims on your attention than most, its authenticity being the most obvious.

Neeme Järvi almost single-handedly brought Estonian music to international attention in the early eighties and now his son Paavo, in this recording and the previous "Searching for Roots", has continued in that vein. One of my most treasured musical possessions is a copy of the original BIS
Read more LP of Tubin's wonderful Sinfonia Lirica (4th Symphony) with its cover photos of the ailing composer, Neeme and a young Paavo, alongside a Swedish lake, just taking in one of the "white nights" of the north.

So, as I have intimated, the performances, as idiomatic as they could be with the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, are superb. Summa is an instrumental version of a vocal piece and none the worse for it. Trisagion is an extended meditation that stands up well (a complement indeed!) against the original ECM version (on the Litany disc). The symphony is performed better than (or at least as well as) the previous versions and remains a very interesting listen despite the booklet notes attempts to see it in terms of Rachmaninov, Shostakovich and Sibelius.

The hypnotic textures of the Britten-dedicated Cantus are perhaps the most widely known of Pärt's work but the last word probably ought to be afforded, as it is in the booklet notes, to Silouans Song. This is another haunting piece that first emerged on ECM alongside a major choral work (Te Deum) and for this listener at least, the composer's greatest moments seem to emanate from his more intimate inspirations (some piano pieces - Alina etc. - are marvellous microcosms of a greater soundworld).

Whatever, this collection is self-recommending and, even at top price banding, is an ideal introduction to the non-choral work of a modern genius. A superb disc.

-- Neil Horner, MusicWeb International
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Works on This Recording

1.
Summa by Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1978; Estonia 
2.
Symphony no 3 by Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1971; Estonia 
3.
Festina lente by Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1988-1990; Vienna, Austria 
4.
Trisagion by Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1992/1994; Germany 
5.
Silouans Song by Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1991 
6.
Fratres by Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1977-1980; Estonia 
7.
Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten by Arvo Pärt
Conductor:  Paavo Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Estonian State Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1976; Estonia 

Sound Samples

Summa
Trisagion for string orchestra
Symphony No. 3: I. crotchet = 66
Symphony No. 3: II. minim = 54-56
Symphony No. 3: III. minim = 60
Fratres
Silouans Song for string orchestra
Festina lente for string orchestra and harp
Cantus in memoriam Benjamin Britten

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