Mon, Fri 星期一、五 5:30pm
Monday and Friday: 5:30pm-6pm
A group of music critics guide you through some of the the most interesting new releases to keep you in touch with the latest fine music recordings.
Critic: Dennis Wu
Stravinsky’s Perséphone (1934) is a dynamic music-theatrical narration of the myth of Persephone’s abduction to the underworld and return to earth. The transparent, sober but evocative music epitomizes Stravinsky’s sensuous take on Neoclassicism, and the piece showcases Stravinsky’s eclectic, original and highly personal approach to music and musical drama through a playful mixture of several genres – melodrama, song, chorus, dance and pantomime. Ultimately, Perséphone offers Stravinsky’s second ode to spring, albeit without the brutal excesses of Le Sacre.
This album was recorded live during the Helsinki Festival 2017 with a star cast featuring English tenor Andrew Staples and French actress Pauline Cheviller. They join forces with the Finnish National Opera’s chorus, children’s chorus and orchestra, conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen, in a breath-taking performance that lifts out the piece’s transformative power.
Critic: Dennis Wu
Bela Bartok and George Enescu were born in same Year - 1881, Bartok in the Austrian-Hungarian city of Nagyszentmiklos (today Romania), Enescu in the Moldovian town of Liveni-Botosani (today Romania). Both pieces on this recording are youth works of theirs - 1900 (Enescu Octet) and 1907 (Bartoks 1st violin concerto). Both works were neglected - Enescus Octet for nearly a decade due to the challenges of the piece (being premiered in 1909) , and Bartoks concerto was neglected by its dedicatee, the violinist Stefi Geyer (who was also his young love), and was published only after her death, in 1956 (being premiered in 1958). Bartok and Enescu both died in self-chosen exile - Bartok 1945 in New York, Enescu 1955 in Paris - yet both were respected and admired for being contributers to the development of their countries’ culture and art, particularly as great «ambassadors» for the folk music.