Stravinsky: Oedipus Rex & Apollon musagète
Catalogue Number LSO0751
Nicholas Parker producer
Jonathan Stokes for Classic Sound Ltd recording, mixing & mastering
Recorded live at the Barbican, 25 April and 1 May 2013
High-definition audio recording
Notes in English / en français / auf Deutsch
Oedipus Rex libretto in Latin with French narration
Gramophone Magazine’s Critic’s Choice
‘An unusual approach to Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex comes with the declamation most eloquently delivered by the French film star Fanny Ardant; but it works well, in a performance more expressive than usual for this work by Sir John Eliot Gardiner, coupled with a graceful, dance-suffused Apollon Musagète.’
**** 'If Oedipus Rex reveals the spectacular side of the LSO, then the orchestra's strings show finesse in Apollon Musagète.'
The New Zealand Herald
'A truly incisive and sinewy performance that secures and locates all the austere beauty of the work.'
Classical CD Choice
‘Gardiner is entirely convincing, and his Apollo goes to the top of my list.’
American Record Guide
'It makes sense that the conductor John Eliot Gardiner, a pioneer of the early music movement, and the impressive Monteverdi Choir, founded by Mr Gardiner in 1964, would have a special feeling for the old-world musical elements of Oedipus Rex, all of which come through on this gripping recording taken from live performances with the London Symphony Orchestra last year.'
The New York Times
'With its unflagging direction, its strong sense of drama and its mostly impeccable singing, Gardiner is a serious contender for anyone wanting a version to put alongside the classic versions.'
International Record Review
'So just how does the founder of the Monteverdi Choir deal with Stravinsky? In a word, admirably! Here, the listener immediately senses what great care Gardiner has taken with this performance, with no detail left untouched. The LSO strings are warmly resonant with the ensemble achieving a fine of sense of balance in the ten contrasting movements.'
The Whole Note
'Factor in tight, crisp playing by the LSO, the fine Jocasta of Jennifer Johnston and subtle string colouring in Apollon Musagète, and it adds up to a fine celebration.'
The Yorkshire Post
‘The London Symphony Orchestra with the Monteverdi Choir conducted by Sir John Eliot Gardiner reached the intended impression of sublime, chapped monumentality and ritual ecstasy.’
Sir John Eliot Gardiner, London Symphony Orchestra
Sir John Eliot Gardiner's first release for LSO Live, Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex and Apollon musagète. Also featured on the release are the Gentlemen of the Monteverdi Choir, considered one of the world’s leading choirs, and a mix of international and home-grown soloists including Jennifer Johnston and Stuart Skelton. French actress Fanny Ardant, who has appeared in over 50 motion pictures, takes the role of narrator.
Oedipus Rex and Apollon musagète are both ancient Greek themed works by Stravinsky. The rich string harmonies and textures in the ballet score of Apollon musagète are pleasantly mesmerizing, expressive and calmly indulgent. In contrast, the dramatic and hauntingly compelling opera-oratorio Oedipus Rex is composed of an assemblage of monumental and powerful sounds, such as playful woodwinds, robust brass and agile strings, with magnificent vocals from the choir and soloists.
|Conductor||Sir John Eliot Gardiner|
|Performers||Monteverdi Choir, London Symphony Orchestra|
|Soloists||Jennifer Johnston, Stuart Skelton, Gidon Saks, Fanny Ardant, David Shipley, Gareth Treseder, Alexander Ashworth|
2. Oedipus Rex, Act I: “Voici Creon, beau-frere d’Oedipe...”
3. Oedipus Rex, Act I: “Oedipe interroge la fontaine de verite...”
4. Oedipus Rex, Act II: “Gloria, gloria, gloria!”
5. Oedipus Rex, Act II: “Le temoin du meurtre sort de l’ombre...”
6. Oedipus Rex, Act II: “Et maintenant, vous allez entendre...”
7. Apollon musagète: I. Premier Tableau, Naissance d’Apollon
8. Apollon musagète: II. Second Tableau, Variation d’Apollon
9. Apollon musagète: III. Pas d’action
10. Apollon musagète: IV. Variation de Calliope
11. Apollon musagète: V. Variation de Polymnie
12. Apollon musagète: VI. Variation de Terpsichore
13. Apollon musagète: VII. Variation d’Apollon
14. Apollon musagète: VIII. Pas de deux
15. Apollon musagète: IX. Coda
16. Apollon musagète: X. Apothéose