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Respighi, Ottorino - Metamorphosen / Ballata delle gnomidi / Belkis - Neschling, John


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Metamorphoseon was written in 1930 in response to a commission from Serge Kous- Sevitzky for the fiftieth anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, which Respighi himself had conducted three years earlier. These anniversary celebrations also gave rise to Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms, Roussel's Third Symphony and Proko- fiev's Fourth.Respighi's work is in fact a concerto for orchestra in thirteen continuous sections and is 'pure music' in the sense that it contains no visual or literary references. A theme heard at the outset is followed by twelve 'modes', which correspond to twelve variations. We should not see the term 'mode' as a suggestion of the scales commonly used in the Middle Ages but rather as an allusion to the different ways in which the music can be transformed by allowing various instruments - or groups of instru- ments - to shine. For his ostensibly classical 'theme and variations', Respighi presents two themes: the first is heard in the very first bar, announced by the strings doubled by bassoons and contrabassoon, whilst the second emerges from the 'counter-melody' heard in bar 9. The first theme is deliberately archaic in style and thus bears witness to Respighi's interest in ancient music, specifically in Gregorian chant. The work was premie`red by Koussevitzky and the Boston Symphony Orchestra (its dedicatee) on 7th November 1930, and was welcomed by the Boston Traveler: 'Respighi's Theme and Variations emerged as a colossal achievement... His is a rare genius for melody, an absolute technical command and above all, brilliant orchestra- tion. Altogether the new work is a masterly composition.' According to Elsa Respighi, who was not only composer's wife but also his biographer and a performer of his music, Respighi was apparently not convinced of the merits of Metamorphoseon, which he may have regarded as a mere stylistic exercise, written to order. She also speaks of it as a somewhat 'forced' composition that was 'difficult to perform'. More- over, Respighi did not try to have the piece performed in Italy, and did not even men- tion it in conversation. Biographies of the composer and studies devoted to his music remain reticent about a piece that is nowadays considered as one of his masterpieces.
Fakta
Artikelnummer BIS2130
Streckkod 7318599921303
Utgivningsdatum 2015-06-26
Kategori Klassiskt
Skivbolag BIS
Enhet SACD
Antal enheter 1
Utövare
Dirigenter Neschling, John
Kompositörer Respighi, Ottorino
Orkestrar Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège
Disk: 1
1 Metamorphonse
2 Ballata delle gnomidi
3 Belkis, Regina di Saba
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