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ClassicsOnline Home » LUTOSLAWSKI, W.: Orchestral Works, Vol. 2 - Symphonic Variations / Piano Concerto / Symphony No. 4 (Muzyka polska, Vol. 3) (BBC Symphony, Gardner)
Lutoslawski orchestral works 2
Together with Grazyna Bacewicz, Andrzej Panufnik, Krzysztof Penderecki, and Mieczyslaw Weinberg, Witold Lutoslawski (1913-1994) was one of Poland's most important twentieth-century composers. Since it was founded in 1930, BBC Symphony Orchestra, one of England's leading orchestras, has been passionately committed to performing twentieth-century and contemporary music. On this new Chandos CD, the BBC Symphony Orchestra performs four of Lutoslawski's important orchestral works. This composer's mostly post-Romantic music style is not to everyone's taste, but those who love his music will certainly want to acquire this CD.
The Symphonic Variations show the influence of early Stravinsky. At the request of the Polish-born pianist Felicja Blumental, the Variations on a Theme of Paganini, originally for two pianos, was reworked into a piece for piano and orchestra. The Piano Concerto and the Fourth Symphony were both composed in the 1980s, several years after Lutoslawski had developed a newly melodic and often passionately lyrical musical language. Those who tend to dismiss Lutoslawski as "too modern" are encouraged to try these works. Edward Gardner coaxes fine performances from the orchestra, and the recorded sound is excellent.
- Ted Wilksmore....
By Jeremy Marchant
By Stephen Estep
American Record Guide
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