Ravel: Daphnis & Chloe / Roth, Les Siecles

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2018 Gramophone Magazine Orchestral Recording of the Year Daphnis and Chloé' is conceived as a ballet in one act and three parts, and tells the...

2018 Gramophone Magazine Orchestral Recording of the Year

Daphnis and Chloé' is conceived as a ballet in one act and three parts, and tells the story of the love between the shepherd Daphnis and the shepherdess Chloé. A warlike tableau is framed by two pastoral ones: in the first, Daphnis and Chloé acknowledge their mutual love following a dance contest that provokes the jealousy of each of them in turn.

The interruption of a group of pirates, who abduct Chloé, puts an end to the rejoicing. The second tableau depicts the pirate camp; the captive girl is commanded to dance for her abductors. In the final tableau, Chloé is restored to Daphnis through a miracle of the god Pan, whom the nymphs have called on for help. After miming the tale of Pan and Syrinx, the young lovers let their joy burst forth in a General Dance of dazzling orgiastic virtuosity.

The orchestral forces are the largest Ravel ever employed and he adds a mixed chorus that sometimes hums and sometimes sings. As we have come to expect, François-Xavier Roth, in his début for harmonia mundi, has gone through Ravel's much-amended score with a fine-tooth comb and subsequently showed himself capable, in a ‘historically informed’ performance, of reproducing with the musicians of Les Siècles all the transparency and stylistic precision one could wish for in Ravel’s masterpiece.



REVIEW:

Les Siècles' French-built woodwind and brass instruments from the early 20th century provide greater tonal sweetness, especially the Selmer trumpets, which don’t dominate textures as much as the incisive LSO brass. Lean gut strings achieve feathery lightness. With fine choral contributions from the Ensemble Aedes, this new recording is highly recommended.

– Gramophone



Product Description:


  • Release Date: May 12, 2017


  • UPC: 3149020528020


  • Catalog Number: HMM905280


  • Label: Harmonia Mundi


  • Number of Discs: 1