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Berlioz: Harold en Italie – LSO Live

Berlioz: Harold en Italie, La mort de Cléopâtre

  • Catalogue Number LSO0760
    UPC 822231176022

    James Mallinson producer
    Classic Sound Ltd engineering, mixing & mastering

    Recorded live at the Barbican, 1st & 12th November 2013
    DSD (direct stream digital) recording

    2.0 Stereo and multi-channel 5.1
    Total playing time 63m 09s

    Jewel case with clear tray. 24pp booklet. Notes in English, French and German.

  • The Mail on Sunday’s Album of the Week

    Gramophone’s High Fidelity Test Disc
    ‘With a live presence and vitality typical of LSO Live, this recording of Harold en Italie finds the orchestra at its best and provides a thrilling test for a system.’

    ‘[Gergiev] brings out details in the score, and the third movement Serenade finds both him and Tamestit more characterful, with greater engagement with dynamics and phrasing… An impressive range of tone and emotion [La mort de Cléopâtre].’
    BBC Music Magazine

    ‘These are vividly coloured, gripping live performances. Antoine Tamestit’s viola offers silky sound in the Byron-inspired symphony Harold en Italie. In La mort de Cléopâtre… the mezzo Karen Cargill is deeply affecting.’
    The Sunday Times

    ‘These two works are impressively recorded. The sound is particularly full and spacious; even listening on ordinary stereo equipment, Berlioz’s evocative writing is fully realised… Karen Cargill gives a gripping account of The Death of Cleopatra… her slow chromatic descent as the poison takes effect is breathtaking, while Berlioz’s extraordinary ending is fully realised through the brilliance of the LSO’s string section.’


Valery Gergiev, London Symphony Orchestra

Violist Antoine Tamestit, and mezzo-soprano, Karen Cargill join forces with the London Symphony Orchestra and Valery Gergiev, in the latest instalment of their Berlioz exploration.

Composed in 1834 at the suggestion of Paganini and later completed in Montmartre, Harold en Italie received its first performance at the Conservatoire de Paris later that year. “I wanted to make the viola a kind of melancholy dreamer” – Hector Berlioz. Taking inspiration from Lord Byron’s Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, Harold en Italie is among the most poetic of Berlioz’s oeuvre, its ingenious use of solo viola charting the dreamy Harold’s wanderings throughout the Italian countryside, and the characters encountered along the way.

Composer   Berlioz
Conductor   Valery Gergiev
Performers   London Symphony Orchestra
Soloists   Antoine Tamestit, Karen Cargill

Track list
1. Harold en Italie: I. Harold Aux Montagnes. Scenes de melancolie, de bonheur et de joie
2. Harold en Italie: II. Marche des pélerins chantant la prière du soir
3. Harold en Italie: III. Sérénade d'un Montagnard des Abruzzes à sa maîtresse
4. Harold en Italie: IV. Orgie de Brigands. Souvenirs des scènes précédentes
5. La mort de Cléopâtre: I. Scène Lyrique / Allegro vivace con impeto – Lento cantabile
6. La mort de Cléopâtre: II. Méditation / Largo misterioso – Allegro assai agitato

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