DEBUSSY: Pelléas and Meisande Symphonic Suite (arr.
Nott). SCHOENBERG: Pelléas and Melisasnd, Op. 5
AUCOIN: Exodos For Tony. Cioncerto for Piano and Orchestra.
The Orphic Moment. Its Own Accord. Dual . The Earth. Gallop.
HARBISON: Diotima. Milosz Scenes for Soprano and Orchestra,
Symphony No. 6.
Plléas and Mélisande, Maeterlinck's play about the forbidden love between the two was the subject of Debussys opera. The premiere was at the Opéra-Comique in 1902. Ever since then it has been performed often, even though its vocal line surely is a not a showcase for singers. However, it does contain some of Debussy's finest music. Erich Leinsdorf prepared an orchestral suite of music from the opera, primarily the orchestral interludes between ats, which he recorded in 1946 with the Cleveland Orchestra. Many other conductors performed this, but now we are indebted to Jonathan Nott who has prepared his own arrangement including not only the orchestra interludes but some of the vocal parts resuoting in a 45-minute smyphonic poem. Arnold Schoenberg's symphonic poem was composed in 1903. When Schoenberg wrote his, he was not aware that Debussy's opera. Schoenberg's symphonic poem is from his early tonal Romantic period, scored for large orchestra . It has often beenr reeorded, notably by Pierre Boulez, Herbert von Karajan and Daniuek Barenboim. This fascinating Pentatone release includes a pined text of Schoenberg's comments for a 1950 Capitol recording. Nott is Music and Artistic Director of the Suisse Romande Orchestra. He conducts superb performances of both symphonic poems. Reordings were made in Switzerland's Geneva Victoria Hall June 2019 (Schemberg) and November 2020. Excellebt audio, as usual from Pentatone's engineering staff.
The enterprising BMOP label has two more SACDs of music by contemporary
American composers who have a close association with Boston. American
composrer/conductor Matthew Aucoin (b. April 3, 1990) perhaps is best
known as a opera composer; he already has written five
of them. He also writes orchestral and chamber music. Most of
his activities are centered in B the Boston area, al¥hough he recently
for the Los Angeles Opera. This new set offers first recordings of
a variety of his works including a new opera, Gallup. This is
a 15-minute "opera" with text by Jake Skeets. The major work
here is a 38-minute
piano concerto written in 2016, a commission from the
Gilmore International Keyboard Festival. It here is played by Conor
Hanick, who played the premiere Adcoin's music is marked by countless
repeated notes. Often his music produces ugly, abrasive sounds. There
is no music here that I would wish to hear again. The performers presumably
do what can be done to present this challenging music. Texts are propvided
for vocal works.
R.E.B. (January 2022)