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Classical - Released January 1, 1960 | Warner Classics

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Ballets - Released October 9, 2015 | Sony Classical

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Sacred Vocal Music - Released May 24, 2016 | Phi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica - Choc Classica de l'année
All four of the works on this album come from the last part of Stravinsky's career, when he accepted the reigning serialist orthodoxy of the day. As with other music of the period, these have declined in performance frequency (and were never that popular to begin with) since then. Yet they respond well to the rather stark performances of which early music singers are capable, and that's what you get here from the superb Collegium Vocale Ghent and Royal Flemish Philharmonic. Three of the four are serialist; the last is a completion of a motet by Renaissance experimentalist Carlo Gesualdo. Of the two large chorus-and-orchestra pieces, the Requiem Canticles of 1966 probably enjoy more frequent performances as Stravinsky's last major composition. They are short, almost fragmentary settings of requiem texts that bring Webern to mind. The lesser-known work is Threni (1958), a setting of selections from the Lamentations of Jeremiah the Prophet. This work perhaps comes closer than any other to bringing Stravinsky's late style full circle to the Russian-influenced sound of his early work. Sample the tenor-flügelhorn duet on different versions of the tone row in the "Quomodo sedet," curiously evocative of Orthodox chant. The two small unaccompanied choral pieces are genuine rarities, and they're beautifully sung here. Recommended for lovers of Stravinsky's serialist period, or even just for those who want to sample it. Outhere's engineering work at the De Singel arts center in Antwerp is impressive. © TiVo
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Classical - Released May 5, 2014 | Musicales Actes Sud

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Ballets - Released November 2, 2018 | BR-Klassik

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
Mariss Jansons has been enormously successful in his live recordings of late- and post-Romantic symphonies, and he has made a strong case for 19th century orchestral music in general, though his catalog of performances with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra on BR Klassik shows little representation of modernist works, aside from Britten's War Requiem in 2013 and Stravinsky's Petrushka in 2015. Flash forward to 2018, with this fairly routine pairing of Stravinsky's Le Sacre du printemps and the suite from L'Oiseau de feu, and it might indicate a trend, perhaps because Jansons has nearly exhausted the heavily Germanic repertoire he has championed since the millennium and needs fresh material. His performance of Le Sacre du printemps doesn't rank with the all-time greats because it doesn't offer any revelations or details in the score or original interpretive ideas, but it has sufficient rhythmic energy and instrumental color to be counted as a respectable reading, and would be worth following with a score. The performance of L'Oiseau de feu similarly has everything in place to make it acceptable, though anyone looking for an exciting and innovative interpretation should look elsewhere, because Jansons' offering essentially accords with Stravinsky's 1967 recording of the suite with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra, so it may be regarded as a standard performance with a pedigree. With this release, Jansons may be preparing to pursue a different direction from his customary material, but he needs to explore pieces beyond Stravinsky's great ballets to make his intentions known. © TiVo
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Theatre Music - Released August 10, 2018 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 3F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice
Composed by Stravinsky in 1933 in the wake of the French oratorio fashion whose figureheads are Milhaud (Les Choéphores) and Honegger (Le Roi David, Jeanne d’Arc au bûcher), and his own Oedipus Rex, Perséphone sanctifies the French period of the Russian composer, after he left Switzerland and before he settled definitely in the United States. Ordered by Ida Rubinstein, to whom music history already owed Debussy’s Martyre de Saint-Sébastien and Ravel’s Boléro, this melodrama, profane in its story and hybrid regarding its musical form, glorifies spring -without it being a new “Consecration” in its language) on a text by André Gide, thus prolonging the emotion created by the novel Si le grain ne meurt. The three acts of the work (Perséphone enlevée, Perséphone aux enfers, Perséphone renaissante) are close to human nature and psyche with an empathy reinforced by Stravinsky’s music. Conceived for a tenor (Eumolpe), a narrator, a mixed chorus, a chidren’s chorus and an orchestra, this work, so original in the production of its author, has however never found its audience. People long blamed Stravinsky for wringing the neck of the prosody of Gide’s text without understanding that it was however one of its more sensitive works, possessed with a melodic verve, a clear lyricism and a warmth for which he wasn’t known for. Under Esa-Pekka Salonen’s inspired and aerial baton, Perséphone finds here a second youth which might finally allow it to impose itself to a new generation of music lovers. This “strange profane mass” (as described by Marcel Marnat) is probably one of the most touching works of a composer that is always looking for new springs. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Symphonic Music - Released June 3, 2016 | BIS

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Exceptional Sound Recording - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Masaaki Suzuki is renowned for his exceptional BIS recordings with the Bach Collegium Japan of the cantatas of Johann Sebastian Bach, but his repertoire isn't limited to Baroque music. This 2016 hybrid SACD presents Suzuki's performances of three of Igor Stravinsky's liveliest neoclassical works, the suite from Pulcinella, the ballet Apollon musagète, and the Concerto in D for strings, all expertly played by the Tapiola Sinfonietta. The jump from Bach to Stravinsky is a large one, though fans of Suzuki's meticulous conducting style will find in him an ideal interpreter for this emotionally cool but vibrantly colorful music. The orchestra plays with electric energy, and the highly charged performances more than make up for the apparent lack of sentiment in Stravinsky's music. But listeners will note above all else that these performances offer virtuosic brilliance, and the playing has a nearly tactile physicality that accurately reflects Stravinsky's notation. This impression is aided by the phenomenal multichannel sound, which has extraordinary depth and clarity, and the musicians have a close-up presence that is well balanced with the vibrant acoustics of the Tapiola Concert Hall. Highly recommended. © TiVo
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Symphonic Music - Released April 26, 2013 | Sony Classical

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Leonard Bernstein's 1958 recording of Igor Stravinsky's Le Sacre du printemps with the New York Philharmonic is ranked among the most exciting renditions ever recorded. Indeed, Stravinsky was sufficiently impressed with this recording to exclaim, "Wow!" Additionally, it was one of the best sounding stereo versions available on a major label. Reissued by Sony for the centennial of the ballet's notorious 1913 premiere in Paris, Bernstein's legendary performance has been remastered from the original analog tapes, and though there is occasional background noise and tape hiss in exposed passages, nothing essential seems to have been lost in the transfer to digital. Some things sound better than others: the undulating chords of the Introduction to Part II have rarely sounded this full and rich, the eruptions in Glorification de l'élue are shockingly vivid, and the Danse sacrale is pungent and incisive. However, the percussion is surprisingly thin in spots in Part I, with the timpani often sounding more prominent than the bass drum, and the entire battery is somewhat underwhelming in the Danse de la terre. There are many all-digital CDs and SACDs that offer superior audio, especially in terms of a wider dynamic range and acoustic resonance, and even acknowledging the excellence of this recording for its time, Columbia didn't have the technology to match today's state-of-the-art audio. All the same, Bernstein certainly gets the orchestra to play in top form, and his elastic tempos in the slow sections and driven pacing in the fast ones keep the listener spellbound. There are no perfect recordings of Le Sacre du printemps, but it's easy to see why this one has stood the test of time and become a favorite of many. © TiVo
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Classical - Released October 19, 2018 | Mariinsky

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Stravinsky's historical status in Russia today is rather ambiguous. The young Russian composer left his native country shortly before the Revolution of October 1917 to care for his wife in Switzerland and didn’t return until 1962. He was welcomed triumphantly, but almost like a composer who was foreign to his own country. In the meantime, Stravinsky had become French, then American, turning his back on Soviet politics by becoming one of the main figures in Western musical composition. Following the collapse of the communist system and the emergence of today's Russia, Stravinsky's music gradually became part of the repertoire of Russian orchestras, as did the work of national treasures such as Tchaikovsky or Shostakovich. Here Valery Gergiev offers us the colourful original version of Petrushka (1911), with its large orchestra and a meter that had not yet been standardized by the subsequent revisions made by the composer. The poetry of the circus prevails here, and the accomplished virtuosos of the excellent Mariinsky Orchestra wonderfully restore the popular flavour of Stravinsky's music. The musical language is completely different in Playing cards, the ballet that the Russian composer wrote in the United States for dancer and choreographer George Balanchine in 1936. This came at the height of Stravinsky’s neoclassical period, that dates back to his 1920 ballet Pulcinella. Though in a way, was Petrushka not a "neoclassical" ballet too? Although the language is different, the parodic meaning, which we so often find in Stravinsky’s world, is present in both works; the citations being from popular origins in Petrushka (Wood leg for example, a song made famous by Dranem in 1908) as well as learned origins in Playing Cards, which merrily mixes The Barber of Seville by Rossini with Symphony No.5 by Beethoven and La Valse by Ravel in a pleasant potpourri. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Classical - Released March 1, 2005 | Naxos

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Classical - Released September 6, 2011 | Musicales Actes Sud

Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice
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Symphonic Music - Released February 9, 2018 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
One of the big events of 2017 was the opening of the Hamburg Philharmonie. Krzysztof Urbański and the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra gave inaugural concerts there that made a lasting impact on audiences and critics alike. On this occasion, the Polish conductor chose to record one of the works closest to his heart, The Rite of Spring: "Stravinsky invented a new language. For me, The Rite is not a score, but a painting: on each page, I see Matisse, Gauguin, the Fauve painters . . . It’s an explosion of colours, emotions, and surprises too: if you don’t know the piece, you never know what’s going to happen. It’s so suggestive that you don’t need to do all that much with the orchestra, the magic is written into the music. . . . When I conduct The Rite, I don’t think: the music penetrates your backbone, it’s inside you . . . It’s a ballet, and perhaps it’s because I was a dancer when I was younger that I can’t control my body when I hear and conduct this piece. It’s a mystical experience for me!". © Alpha Classics
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Classical - Released January 5, 2008 | Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

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Performed with amazing polish and astounding virtuosity, this 2008 coupling of Stravinsky's Firebird Suite and Rite of Spring by Mariss Jansons and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra is nevertheless quite dull. It's not really the orchestra's fault. The skill the Dutch players bring to this supremely difficult music is incredible. No matter how excessive the music's technical demands, the Concertgebouw performs everything with consummate professionalism. And it's not really the conductor's fault. Jansons is an extremely talented and tremendously skilled director and no matter how complex the music's requirements, he elicits flawless playing from the Dutch musicians. If there is fault to be apportioned here, it goes to the performing tradition. Where in the early years of their history, Stravinsky's two ground-breaking ballet scores were considered the ne plus ultra of orchestral challenges; the scores have since become repertoire standards and even advanced high school orchestras have taken them up. Thus, when one of the three most virtuosic orchestras in Europe play them, the effortless ease of their performances undercut the scores' intrinsic difficulties, reducing music that was avant-garde to old favorite status and thereby producing performances that, for all their virtuosity, are still quite dull. RCO Live's super audio sound is cool, deep, and detailed, with an astonishing sense of time and place. © TiVo
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Symphonic Music - Released January 12, 2018 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Choc de Classica
The rediscovery of Stravinsky's Funeral Song, from a recording made in St Petersburg in Spring 2015, was a major event. Composed over the summer of 1908 in honour of his late teacher Rimsky-Korsakov, who died in June that year, it marked a moment where Stravinsky was working at many different types of writing, looking for a personal language. The work was first performed at a memorial concert in St Petersburg in January 1909 but thereafter it disappeared without a trace: the only evidence of its existence was in accounts of the concert and the composer's own nostalgic memories of the work he saw as "the best of my works before Firebird, and the most advanced in terms of chromatic harmonies." And here at last is the world's first ever recording of it! A stunning little treasure in which we can still hear Rimsky, and also the Stravinsky of Firebird, but perhaps also still the Stravinsky of the Rite of Spring, which was still very recent, a testimony to the composer's breakneck evolution. It was in the same year, 1908, that Stravinsky interrupted his writing of Fireworks when he heard the news of Rismsky's death in order to compose his Funeral Song; the Scherzo Fantastique was the last score by the young composer that the old master would ever get to read, although he never heard it performed. With this recording, Riccardo Chilly offers us a judicious selection of four works from the composer's youth (we also find The Faun and the Shepherdess of 1906, a little cycle of three melodies with orchestra, sung in French, here with Sophie Koch) followed by the big turning point that is the Rite of Spring, with a reading which is both clear and fiery. © SM/Qobuz
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Classical - Released January 9, 2020 | SFS Media

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Classical - Released January 1, 1961 | BnF Collection

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Symphonic Music - Released November 14, 1994 | Sony Classical

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Golden Oldies
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Classical - Released March 9, 1999 | High Performance

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Classical - Released October 26, 2018 | Sony Classical

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Ever since he was a boy, Pink Floyd's bassist Roger Waters has been haunted by his father's death in the Second World War. His writing would always bear the imprint of this trauma, in particular on The Wall (1979), The Final Cut (1983) – dedicated to his father – and Amused to Death (1992). This story of a poor soldier who sold his soul to the devil must have struck a chord with him.The product of the vagaries of the Great War and the friendship between composer Igor Stravinsky (later exiled in Switzerland), the writer Charles-Ferdinand Ramuz and conductor Ernest Ansermet, The Soldier's Tale, was based on one of Afanasyev's Russian folk tales, but adapted in the Canton of Vaud by Ramuz, in whose hands it became a universal parable. Stravinsky wrote a very sparse score for seven instruments (violin, double bass, clarinet, bassoon, cornet, trombone and percussion) which demanded real virtuosity from the musicians. One hundred years after its first outing on 28 September 1918 in Lausanne, The Soldier's Tale is continuing its march across the globe. On this album, rock legend Roger Waters is the sole narrator in his own adaptation, which is based on translations by Michael Flanders and Kitty Black. He takes on the three roles himself, with seven excellent musicians from the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival. For Waters, this latest work is simply the next logical step, given his musical research and his political stance, in particular his support for Palestine and his fight against Trump. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Symphonic Music - Released February 16, 2010 | CSO Resound

Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Choc de Classica - Exceptional Sound Recording