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Mussorgsky - Pictures at an Exhibition [CD]

Ukraine National Symphony Orchestra , Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky , Theodore Kuchar Audio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
Price: £7.54 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Mussorgsky - Pictures at an Exhibition + Saint-SaŽns: Organ Symphony No. 3, The Carnival of the Animals, etc. + Grieg: Peer Gynt Suites
Price For All Three: £18.75

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Product details

  • Conductor: Theodore Kuchar
  • Composer: Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky
  • Audio CD (10 Mar 2003)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Naxos
  • ASIN: B00008IHVZ
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 12,773 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Night on the bare mountain (Rimsky-Korsakov version)
2. Hopak from Sorochintsy fair
3. Golitsin's exile from Khovanshchina
4. Night on the bare mountain (Original version)
5. Pictures at an exhibition (orch. Ravel)

Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
39 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully characterful Pictures. 26 April 2003
By Steve TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine is an excellent band, and here they turn in marvellously characterised performances of Pictures at an Exhibition. They play with more spirit than many 'big-name' orchestras-the brass section has a wonderfully deep sound and I very much like the chirpy woodwind.The recording is astonishingly good-don't think because the disc's cheap you have to make any allowances. The final 'picture', The Great Gate of Kiev really packs a punch! An excellent disc regardless of price.
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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb performances and recording. 7 April 2003
By Steve TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
The National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine are in competion with virtually every great orchestra in the world in these pieces, but don't let any unfamiliarity with the artists put you off. These are cracking performances; Pictures at an Exhibition receives the finest I've heard on disc.
This is in fact a very fine orchestra, and under Kuchar they deliver performances brimming with character. The brass section is wonderfully deep in 'Catacombae', the woodwinds chirp humourously in the 'Ballet of the Unhatched Chicks' and the whole band skips along in 'Market Place at Limoges'. In fact the whole piece is delivered with a character often lacking in accounts by more famous orchestras. The recording is brilliant-you really don't have to make any allowances for Naxos these days. And the final 'Great Gate of Kiev' will blow your socks off! These performers have this music in their blood, and to top it all they include two versions of 'Night on a Bare Mountain'. (The Rimsky-Korsakov arrangement is the better).
All this for a fiver!! BUY!
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mussorgsky at its best 15 Jun 2009
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I read a lot of classical reviews before settling on this version of Pictures at an Exhibition. They were right. This is an excellent version of this piece of music. The sound quality is excellent, the music is emotional and stirring. and at the Naxos price its an absolute bargain. A must buy for any classical collection, even if you have other versions.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By I. Giles HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
This disc, particularly well recorded in 2001, offers the highest possible musical quality at the lowest possible price range. That makes it a tremendous bargain on all counts.

The Pictures themselves offer musical characterisation of insight and delivery by the conductor and orchestra of a quality to more than match those much regarded earlier performances by Reiner in Chicago, Szell in Cleveland and more recently, Gergiev with the VPO. There have been others in my collection by Maazel and Karajan etc. but this version on Naxos caps them all.

The disc starts with two versions of the Night on the Bare Mountain separated by fine performances of two short orchestral sections from the operas Sorochintsy Fair and Khovanshchina. Firstly we hear a gripping performance of the Rimsky arrangement. It is by listening to the original version by Mussorgsky three items later that one realises how much more effective the original is when played with the sort of total commitment that this Ukrainian orchestra delivers under Kuchar. I was already alerted of this superiority to some extent having previously enjoyed the same original version on a 'live' performance with Abbado and the BPO in Japan. However this later performance is simply more earthy, more red-blooded and more exciting.

This is close to becoming a bit of a 'rave' review so it can be concluded simply by commenting that this disc deserves to be included on any short-list of potential versions of the music being considered for purchase regardless of price or vintage.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thrilling, and of demonstration audio quality. 22 April 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I purchased this CD after reading the enthusiastic recommendations of your other reviewers. I agree wholheartedly. This version is a tour de force from all relevant viewpoints .....interpretation, orchestral playing and recording.
If you need a cd to demonstrate the prowess of your HI Fi equipment, this could be the one. Simply splendid!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent Mussorgsky 11 Feb 2011
By Sentinel TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
This is a wonderfully powerful, brass-heavy, dramatic collection. Kuchar drives the Ukrainian Orchestra hard, but they rise to the challenge, producing exhilarating accounts of 'Picture' and two versions of 'Night on the Bare Mountain', the later one demonstrating just how much extra excitement Rimsky-Korsakov's orchestration adds. However, this is not simply a powerhouse display throughout, as there is plenty of light and shade here, and delicate touches where required, which add to the rich character of the overall performance, enhanced by a fine recording which allows the brass to bite with urgency, yet allows more delicate string work to glitter in its own way.
If you're looking for a thrilling and exhilarating account of these pieces, you simply can't go wrong, especially at such a bargain price: both the Gramophone and the Penguin Guide agree. Wonderfully exciting.
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