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Bartok: The Orchestral Masterpieces [CD]

Béla Bartók, Sir Georg Solti Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
Price: £7.37 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Frequently Bought Together

Bartok: The Orchestral Masterpieces + Bartok : String Quartets Nos 1 - 6 [Complete]  -  Apex
Price For Both: £13.62

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Product details

  • Orchestra: Georg Solti
  • Conductor: Chicago Symphony Orchestra
  • Audio CD (8 July 2002)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Decca (UMO)
  • ASIN: B000068Q5U
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 41,243 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Concerto for Orchestra
2. Dance Suite
3. Hungarian Sketches
4. Romanian Folk Dances
Disc: 2
1. Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta
2. Divertimento
3. The Miraculous Mandarin - Suite

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
78 of 83 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They don't come better than this 8 Dec 2004
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
With one of the largest back catalogues in the business, why did Decca choose these 1981 recordings of Bartok for reissue? It's simply because they haven't been bettered, and I don't believe they ever will: During its time under the exacting Georg Solti the Chicago Symphony Orchestra attained a position as a world-class band, bearing easily all comparisons with Berlin and Vienna. When conducting Hungarian music Solti, who had been a pupil of Bartok's, always demonstrated a special authority. This shines through in the precision, eloquence and sheer expressiveness of these performances.
The Decca sound engineers of the time were the best in the business and they were well placed to take advantage when the new digital recording technology came along. It's hard to believe, listening today, that this would have been one of the earliest commercial pressings using the technique. Their trick was to capture the full power of the orchestra, whilst allowing individual instruments to be heard in their natural positions and at a believable dynamic - "close miking", with its unnatural sound levels in the quiet passages, was never detectable. The relationship between the instruments, both spatially and in volume, always sounded so authentic, but no detail was ever missed. Sadly, modern recordings just aren't as good!
I was happy to pay full price for these CDs when they first came out. Now you get both of them together as a mid-price offering. What are you waiting for?
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Solti 30 Nov 2008
Format:Audio CD
Georg Solti was a wonderful interpreter of Bartok as a conductor (though a dreadful one as a pianist!) All of these recordings are from late in his career, I think the earliest is from 1980. You will hear some so called experts say his LSO recordings from the 1960s are better, don't listen. Hearing these recordings, it is as if Solti's entire life experience of conducting these masterpieces has been distilled into that moment. Essential.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every one of these pieces is a masterpiece 8 Nov 2008
By John Ferngrove TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I came to these pieces from the string quartets expecting music of similar difficulty, but it would seem that Bartok reserved the quartet as his most experimental medium. All of these pieces are filled with beauty, colour and excitement.

Nothing on the first disc is difficult music. Though there are some atonal harmonies and some non-standard time signatures, these are rooted in tonality and the rhythms of folk dance. All the pieces on the first disc include clashes of dark and light, but all conclude with an overwhelmingly positive character. The Concerto for Orchestra is the most large scale work and includes several memorable moments, one of my favourites of which is the glorious brass section in the second movement. The remaining pieces on disk one are filled with East European folk idioms that are predominantly gay and flamboyant.

The second disc includes the pieces that might be thought a little more difficult to the Classical ear. The Concerto for Strings, Percussion and Celeste has a very mysterious flavour with some dazzling twelve-tone harmony, but with such rhythmic excitement as to carry it out of the realms of difficulty. Though relatively brief, the following Divertimenti for Strings continue the twelve-tone polyphony with great power and gusto. The final piece, The Suite from the Miraculous Mandarin, is truly strange, as is its theme, basically a sequence of chase scenes, filled with macabre and sinister humour.

These discs are fantastic value at the price. Although I can imagine more spacious recordings of these pieces, I cannot imagine them more tonally balanced - each instrument glows. Neither can I imagine them more beautifully played or perfectly paced. Clearly this is Solti's home ground.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two discs of superb performances and recordings 17 Dec 2012
Format:Audio CD
This two disc set, recorded in the 1980's, gathers together arguably the key Bartok non-piano works for orchestra in a very convenient package. Every one of these performances has reason to be considered to be one of the very finest if not the finest recordings made over the last 20 years or so.

Georg Solti, as an Hungarian, was naturally in sympathy with the Bartok idiom and thus we have unusually sympathetic interpretations of these works. The Chicago orchestra since Reiner's day has always been considered one of the finest orchestra in the States with arguably the most European sound. Their recording of the Concerto for Orchestra with Reiner is still considered to be an outstanding example of performance and recording combined. In this case the orchestra under Solti are able to match Reiner's achievement with the further advantage of more modern sonics. The main difference, interpretively, between the performance and Solti's earlier one with the LSO concerns the Tempo chosen for the 'couples' movement which Solti feels is more in line with Bartok's wishes in this CSO recording.

The two sets of dances are both ideal and the Dance Suite is played with brilliance and understanding. My personal preference for this piece is, once more, the predecessor with the LSO which seems to have an element of humour missing in this rather more driven account. At this point it may be worth mentioning that Decca have issued the earlier Bartok/LSO disc with Solti in their 24 bit remastered 'legends' series which suggests that they too, feel that the earlier recording has something special to say.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Bartok
A really disappointing album from Bartok, one of Hungary's greats. I'm familiar with his dischordant style, but even so the album lacks all sense of melody or coherence. Read more
Published 15 days ago by David Brookes
5.0 out of 5 stars At the top of my list
All of these works reveal Solti's passionate genius at its greatest in scores that mean so much to him and the orchestral response is at one with his vision. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Bill Glen
4.0 out of 5 stars Good double CD of bartok masterpieces
This CD is a great introduction to Bartok's major orchestral works.The sound is a bit bright for me,but the performances and interpretation are very good. Read more
Published 4 months ago by geoff b
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Bartok
Bela Bartok will never ever be classed as easy listening. At first I wondered what on earth I had purchased, bit with a little persistence I started to ‘get’ what the Hungarian was... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Mr. B. A. French
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent recording
Bartok stunningly executed with the best (in my opinion) interpreter of his work. A delight to listen to. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Trixielala
5.0 out of 5 stars wondeful music
Such a wonderful experience listening to this CD. AND the quallity of the recording is superb. Fully recommended. Good value.
Published 16 months ago by Anthony Garrick
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerfully expressive performances
Like the famous RCA stereo recording of Music for Strings, Percussion & Celesta by Fritz Reiner, Solti also captures the mysterious atmosphere and the barbaric energy of the music... Read more
Published on 23 May 2011 by Scriabinmahler
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Decca double
The Solti Bartok orchestral recordings are truly excellent. These recordings will be around for a long long time for the simple reason they are expertly played with lots of... Read more
Published on 4 Jan 2010 by zargb5
5.0 out of 5 stars Bartok - a suprise package.
I bought this on the strength of a 'loan' vinyl copy of the Concerto for Orchestra. I was attracted to this version as it was Sir George & CSR. Read more
Published on 23 Jan 2008 by Mr. Paul Arthur Cambridge
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