ORG Original Recordings Group - ORG163 -
AAA 100% Analogue - 180 Gram Virgin Vinyl - Pressed at RTI
2,500 Numbered limited Edition - Mastered by Bernie Grundman
The Absolute Sound Super Disc List 2016 TAS Harry Pearson Super LP List
Antal Dorati conducts the London Symphony Orchestra for this 1960 recording of Stravinsky's Firebird Suite.
• Mastered by Bernie Grundman from the Original Analog Master Tapes!
"The Firebird" can almost be described as a work of fate, since it is not only the first of several ballets that Stravinsky wrote for Sergei Diaghilev and his Ballets Russes but also marks his international breakthrough as a composer. In comparison with his other earlier stage works, the ecstatic, sharply contoured "Rite of Spring" for example, "The Firebird", with its melodic character, is a far gentler work altogether. There are unmistakable reminiscences of the musical language of Rimsky-Korsakov and Tchaikovsky as well as snatches of late-Romantic harmonies; all this lends the music the charm of Russian tradition.
In his performance, Dorati chooses the golden mean in that he has his ensemble produce a highly colourful but by no means glaring sound. Thus the listener is given the opportunity to follow the development of the finely chiselled motifs which are so characteristic of this early composition. Happily, the chamber-music-like transparency is preserved even in the loud, more exposed passages – the sound leaves the loudspeakers with a sprightly, athletic tread, as it were.
This famous and desirable Mercury Living Presence title was recorded by Wilma and Robert Fine at Watford Town Hall in the outskirts of London. Utilizing an array of three omni-directional microphones hung just outside the proscenium arch of the hall, the signal then passed through a three-channel mixer and onto recorders in the Mercury mobile recording van. The resulting master tape catches the full bloom of the orchestra along with the natural resonance of the auditorium. Dorati’s interpretation of the ballet is considered one of the greatest recorded.
London Symphony Orchestra
Antal Dorati, conductor
The Firebird Suite