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Respighi - Transcriptions

Composer Ottorino Respighi
Performer Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège
John Neschling, conductor
Period Modern
Catalogue Number BIS-2350 SACD
EAN 7318599923505
Format SACD Hybrid

This hybrid disc plays on both CD and SACD players
SACD Surround - SACD Stereo - CD Stereo

Release date Feb 2021
Total time 59'08


The success of Ottorino Respighi’s ‘Roman Trilogy’ brought the composer international fame as an outstanding orchestrator. One side effect of this are the orchestral transcriptions gathered on this album: all made in 1929-30 and commissioned by eminent conductors such as Arturo Toscanini and Serge Koussevitzky for their American orchestras. &&&Respighi’s wide-ranging musical tastes included an interest in early music which probably contributed to him taking on the task of transcribing organ works by Bach – or creating ‘orchestral interpretations’, as he himself called the results. Among the Bach works are the celebrated Passacaglia in C minor – which Stokowski had orchestrated just a few years earlier – as well as the Prelude and Fugue in D major. Both are given the full treatment by Respighi, with orchestral forces including strings, triple woodwind, bass clarinet, contrabassoon, four horns, three trumpets, three trombones, tuba, timpani and piano four hands for the Prelude and Fugue. The score for the Passacaglia asks for even greater forces (including an organ); Respighi compared Bach’s original to ‘a cathedral built exclusively of sound’ – a description equally valid for his own arrangement.

The Passacaglia was a success for Toscanini in New York, possibly influencing Koussevitsky in Boston to place a commission of his own. For him and the Boston Symphony Orchestra Respighi transcribed five of Rachmaninov’s Études-Tableaux for solo piano. Although these are programmatic pieces, their subject matter had not been disclosed in the editions for piano, but the Russian composer revealed his inspiration to Respighi in order to help him ‘find the appropriate colours’. With the present album, l’Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège and John Neschling bring us the fifth instalment in a series that has been called ‘the finest-ever survey of the composer’s orchestral output undertaken by a single conductor’ (BBC Music Magazine).
 
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  Johann Sebastian Bach, Ottorino Respighi
  Prelude and Fugue in D major (BWV 532), P 158 10'10
01 Prelude 4'39
02 Fugue 5'31
 
  Passacaglia in C minor (BWV 582), P 159 15'24
03 Passacaglia 8'44
04 Fugue 6'40
 
  Tre Corali (Three Chorales), P 167 10'40
05 1. After 'Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland', BWV 659 4'06
06 2. After 'Meine Seele erhebt den Herren', BWV 648 1'08
07 3. After 'Wachet auf ruft uns die Stimme', BWV 645 5'26
 
 
  Sergei Rachmaninov, Ottorino Respighi
  Cinq Études-Tableaux, P 160 22'51
08 1. La mer et les mouettes, Op. 39 No. 2 7'19
09 2. La foire, Op. 33 No. 4 2'05
10 3. Marche funèbre, Op. 39 No. 7 6'13
11 4. Le chaperon rouge et le loup, Op. 39 No. 6 3'12
12 5. Marche, Op. 39 No. 9 4'02
 
  Album total 59'08
ConductorNeschling, John
OrchestraOrchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège
ArrangerRespighi, Ottorino
ComposerBach, Johann Sebastian
Rachmaninov, Sergei
Respighi, Ottorino

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