Igor Stravinsky (Chesky Records)

Petrouchka
Royal Philarmonic Orchestra
Oscar Danon, Conductor

Le Sacre Du Printemps
London Festival Orchestra
René Leibowitz, Conductor

It is not possible to write about this record without writing some lines about the composition and also Igor Stravinsky (and about my personal views, of course).
Petrushka and The Rite of Spring were composed sequentially and it’s good that this record present them in this order (The Firebird precedes them and should also be considered).
The main concern of the composers, at least before 20th century, was to build harmonies and melodies and arrange them in a format (like Symphony) that forms a great piece of art. In my view, this was, generally, the base of the 700 years of classical music since the medieval times. We have Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, Chopin and many other Genius that keeps the very pleasant music immortal, but there are others that break the usual concepts and build totally new music formats. That’s what attracts me and makes me listen Stravinsky main pieces (Firebird, Petrushka and The Rite of Spring).
Imagine a music that has no melody and has no harmony. The music has form, rithm, figures and textures. Maybe it’s hard to explain in words. Hearing is much more understandable. The creativity required to reach such kind of form is not for everyone, that’s the reason why Stravisnky became also immortal. The Petrushka is yet more colorful than The Rite. The latter is more quiet and with more violent passages, representing pagan rites. It seems that Stravisnky wanted to do the extreme of its modern vision after Petrushka.
This is a real rupture of classic music and didn’t have a good acceptance in the first performance of The Rite of Spring, in Paris, 1913. A lot of confusion and rage. The world was not ready for that, despite its placed in recent history. Only 10 years later, or more, it stared to be accepted and acclaimed by its genius.
This is a Chesky record and I can save many words about its quality. It was remastered from original 60’s tapes and was in high quality form, what made possible to preserve all the performance details. It is one of the best orchestra recording I’ve ever heard in my stereo hi-fi system.

Best Regards,
Leonardo

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