Pärt, Arvo - Orient & Occident - Swedish Radio Choir, The

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"An exceptional and musically important release" - Gramophone, Editor's Choice. The long-awaited new album by the great Estonian composer brings new colours to his unique body of work. The purity and the sense of timelessness remain; the harmonic palette is subtly expanded. These recordings of "Orient & Occident", "Ein Wallfahrtslied" and "Como cierva sedienta" have been widely praised.

"This programme represents a retreat from the remote cloister where for so long Arvo Pärt invited us to join him, a definite shift from the aerated tintinabuli. The purity remains, so do the spare textures and, to a limited extent, earlier stylistic traits. Pärt's voice is always recognisable. And yet who, years ago, could have anticipated the tempered tumult that erupts in the third movement of 'Como cierva sedienta, a half-hour choral drama commissioned by the Festival de Música de Canarias and premiered in Tenerife in 1999'' The texts come from the 42nd and 43rd Psalms, opening with 'as the hart panteth''. Even in the first few seconds, after chorus and bell have registered, vivid instrumental colour signals a fresh departure. It's almost as if Pärt is relishing textures previously denied him, like a penitent released from fasting. ' The two shorter works are also significant. 'Wallfahrtslied', a memorial to a friend, is presented in the revised version for strings and men's choir. Again Pärt engages a lyrical muse particularly for the emotionally weighted prelude and postlude whereas the accompaniment to the main text, a combination of pizzicato and shuddering bowed phrases, suggests a lament tinged with anger.The seven-minute string piece 'Orient and Occident' is barely two years old, and has 'a monophonic line which runs resolutely through (it)', to quote Pärt's wife, Nora. Snake-like oriental gestures, coiled with prominent portamenti sound like an Eastern variant of Pärt's earlier string works. ' I'll certainly buy that, but the choral pieces are the prime reasons for investing in this exceptional and musically important release.

Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra
Swedish Radio Choir
Helena Olsson, soprano
Tõnu Kaljuste, conductor

Recorded May 2001
Artikelnummer ECM1795
Streckkod 0028947208020
Utgivningsdatum 2002-10-22
Kategori Klassiskt
Skivbolag ECM
Enhet CD
Antal enheter 1
Artister Swedish Radio Choir, The
Kompositörer Pärt, Arvo
Disk: 1
1 Wallfahrtslied/Pilgrims' Song (version for men's c 08:49
2 Orient & Occident (for string orchestra) (2000) 07:05
3 Como cierva sedienta (version for women's choir an 07:16
4 Como cierva sedienta (version for women's choir an 04:09
5 Como cierva sedienta (version for women's choir an 05:36
6 Como cierva sedienta (version for women's choir an 03:27
7 Como cierva sedienta (version for women's choir an 10:53
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