Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider


New App by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra for iOS and Android!

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

REVIEW



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 

 

alternatively
CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS
Sound Samples & Downloads

Krzystof PENDERECKI (b. 1933)
Fonogrammi (1961) [6.55]
The awakening of Jacob (1974) [9.29]
Anaklasis (1960) [6.39]
De natura sonoris I (1966) [8.51]
Partita (1971, revised 1991) [18.44]
Horn Concerto Winterreise (2008) [18.15]
Urszula Janik (flute: Fonogrammi); Elżbieta Stefánska (harpsichord: partita); Jennifer Montone (horn)
Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra/Antoni Wit
rec. Warsaw Philharmonic Hall, August-September 2008, 7 September 2009 (partita) and 14-15 June 2010 (concerto)
NAXOS 8.572482 [68.52]

Experience Classicsonline



This latest instalment of Antoni Wit’s survey of the music of Penderecki for Naxos - see below - concentrates on the music of the composer’s earlier avant-garde period. Indeed all the tracks on this disc have been recorded by Penderecki himself: the earlier pieces in the 1960s and 1970s reissued several times on CD by EMI, and the Horn Concerto in 2010 by Channel Classics. It must be said that the performances of the earlier pieces here are better recorded and generally better played than in the composer’s own recordings made when the techniques demanded by the music were clearly more unfamiliar to his Polish players. Only in his recording of Anaklasis - originally issued as a coupling for the First Symphony - were the LSO instrumentalists likely to be readily accustomed to the demands of modern music.
 
The earliest works here - Fonogrammi, Anaklasis and De natura sonoris I - are all very much pieces of their time. Once upon a time they seemed like the cutting edge of experimentalism, but now they have a slightly dated feel to them. This is largely because most of the techniques exploited have now become part of the common currency of orchestral writing. The persistent string glissandi, the rhythmic irruptions, the clusters of harmonies and so on, are nevertheless given full measure by the players here. They seem positively to revel in their opportunities. These performances suffer nothing by comparison with the composer’s own, and they are much better played and recorded.
 
The slightly later Partita is described on the back of the CD as “rev. 1991” but there is no indication as to the nature of these revisions. There seem to be no obvious differences from the ‘original’ version as recorded by Penderecki himself, apart from those which one would naturally expect from players who are more experienced in this kind of music, and the more immediate recorded sound. The smaller solo roles for electric guitar, bass guitar, harp and double bass are taken by Michał Pindakiewicz, Konrad Kubicki, Barbara Witowska and Jerzy Cembryński respectively. In Penderecki’s recording these roles were not thought significant enough to credit the players individually but the players here justify their billing.
 
The piece here described as The awakening of Jacob does not appear to exist in the listings of Penderecki’s works. The piece is more normally known as The dream of Jacob - under which title it was twice recorded by the composer. The otherwise informative notes by Richard Whitehouse do not explain the change in title, but suggest that the work anticipated the move to neo-romanticism which he was about to adopt. I must say that this impression of a move towards a more ‘traditional’ style did not strike me when I heard Penderecki’s original recording, and does not strike me differently now. It remains very much a work of Penderecki’s earlier avant-garde period.
 
The Horn Concerto is quite another matter. When it was written over thirty years later Penderecki’s distancing from experimentalism was total and complete. The subtitle Winterreise has no reference to Schubert’s song-cycle. Richard Whitehouse’s note does not explain it, but it appears to have been inspired by memories of walks in the Polish winter countryside. The piece sits rather uneasily with the other works on this disc. This appears to be its second recording within two years of its first performance. The earlier recording features Radovan Vlatkovic, who gave the world première. Jennifer Montone has nothing to fear by comparison with her more illustrious predecessor. The opening of the work comes as quite a shock, and something of a relief, after the persistently experimental writing of the other pieces. After a while there is a suggestion of a return to some of Penderecki’s earlier styles, but these are now absorbed and subsumed in the whole together with some very romantic gestures. There are hints even of Grieg (Peer Gynt’s homecoming) at 7.38 and Richard Strauss (Die Frau ohne Schatten) from 7.52. It is a rather likeable piece, with even some Shostakovich-like humorous galumphing about at 10.57. The orchestral support is splendid, including superbly delicate pianissimo piccolo touches at 13.54 and 16.51. One suspects that there may be a programme behind the music but we are not given information on this.
 
It is good that Wit’s comprehensive survey of Penderecki’s output is extending to works that have already been recorded by the composer himself and they need fear nothing from their competition. This is not music that allows for a great deal of variety in interpretation, but the recorded sound for Naxos is much superior and more analytical than EMI’s in their 1960s and 1970s recordings, good though that was for its time. The increased clarity benefits the music.  

Paul Corfield Godfrey 


Reviews of other Penderecki recordings on Naxos

8.557386/7 Polish requiem
8.557766 Symphony 7
8.557980 Te Deum
8.570509 Works for cello and orchestra
8.572032 Credo
8.572211 Concertos for cello and viola
8.572212 Sinfoniettas








 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools






Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.