Aureole etc.

Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line

Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

SilvesterKonzert (Gala from Berlin) Invitation to the Dance (2001)
Johann Sebastian BACH (1685 – 1750)

Suite No. 3 BWV 1068 Gavotte (1723)
Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 – 1791)

Divertimento in D major K334 Menuetto (1780)
Rondo for Piano and Orchestra in D Major, K382 (1782 )
Giuseppe VERDI (1813 – 1901)

Aida - Dance of the Little Moorish Slaves (1871)
Antonin DVOŘÁK (1841 – 1904)

Slavonic Dance in G minor, Op. 46, No. 8. (1878)
Peter Ilyich TCHAIKOVSKY (1840 – 1893)

The NutcrackerWaltz of the Flowers (1892)
Jean SIBELIUS (1865 – 1957)

Valse Triste Op. 44 (1904)
Johann STRAUSS II (1825 – 1899)

Kaiserwalzer Op. 437 (1889)
Zoltan KODALY (1882 – 1967)

Dances from Galanta (1933)
Horacio SALGAN arr. Jose Carli (contemporary)

A fuego lento (1955)
Zequinha de ABREU / Aloysio OLIVIERO, arr. Cliff COLNOT (1848 - 1880)

Tico Tico (1803)
Johann STRAUSS II (1825 – 1899)

Unter Donner und Blitz, Op. 324 (1868)

El firulete (1803)
Johannes BRAHMS (1833 – 1893)

Hungarian Dance No. 1 in G Minor (1869)
Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra/Daniel Barenboim (also pianist in Mozart Rondo)
Directed by Hans Hulscher.
recorded 31st December 2001 at the Philharmonie, Berlin (DVD).
TDK10 5184-9 DV SG2001 [97 mins]


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Concerts with a theme are the tradition in Berlin on New Year’s Eve. For 2001. Daniel Barenboim chose ‘the dance’ as the theme, and this DVD preserves that evening. I am inherently suspicious about what are loosely termed "compilation discs," but this is a real gem. The atmosphere is infectious and by the time you reach "Tico Tico," you will be totally in harness for one of the most enjoyable concert recordings I have experienced on DVD.

This disc shows the Berlin orchestra really enjoying themselves, and the conductor plays along with them, complementing the overall atmosphere. The audience, of which we see relatively little, is obviously caught up in the proceedings. The concert starts fairly soberly with the Bach Gavotte, and this is followed by the famous menuetto from Mozart’s Divertimento in D. Barenboim then leaves the rostrum and takes up his position at the piano. He leads the orchestra in a very pleasant performance of Mozart’s Rondo for piano and orchestra.

Aida is the source for a more dance related pieces. The Dance of the Little Moorish Slaves is superbly played, and Barenboim plays up to the audience to the manner born.

The atmosphere heats up significantly with a superbly rhythmical and dynamic performance of Dvořák’s popular Slavonic Dance played with superb attack and gusto. If nothing else, the disc would be worth acquiring for this performance alone. Although not a Czech flavoured performance, the Berlin Philharmonic play with such panache that one could imagine the Czech Philharmonic being stretched to match the verve clearly in evidence here.

Tchaikovsky’s Waltz of the Flowers from The Nutcracker precedes one of the more melancholy examples of dance music in the person of Sibelius’s Valse Triste. We then are treated to some fun which forms part of the celebrations on the following day in Vienna. Zoltan Kodaly is featured in the guise of his Dances from Galanta. Barenboim and the orchestra reduce the temperature of the proceedings by a beautiful performance of the Dances. The tone of the performance is languishing and allows the woodwind soloists full rein to their extreme virtuosity.

South America comes into focus with two short pieces by composers from that region. A Fuego Lento by Salgan and Tico Tico by Zequiha de Abreu and Alysio Oliviera. The latter is the highlight of the disc for me, with the BPO settling into the jazz idiom with absolutely no difficulty whatsoever. At times, Barenboim stands motionless apart from a rhythmic swaying to inspire his players. What a superlative ensemble Claudio Abbado has developed during his tenure as Chief Conductor.

More Strauss and encores combined close an evening’s entertainment which I am sure will captivate you. So, in conclusion, if you are attracted by either the repertoire, or indeed the opportunity to witness an end of year celebration, then this is the DVD for you.

John Phillips

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