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Romeo And Juliet (Previn)

Sergey Prokofiev Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
Price: £12.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Audio CD (4 Oct 2004)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Gemini
  • ASIN: B0002XV310
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 142,141 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Introduction
2. Romeo
3. The Street Awakens
4. Morning Dance
5. The Quarrel
6. The Fight
7. The Prince Gives His Order
8. Interlude
9. Preparing for the Ball (Juliet and the Nurse)
10. Juliet As a Young Girl
See all 26 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. The Nurse Gives Romeo the Note from Juliet
2. Juliet With Friar Laurence
3. Romeo With Friar Laurence
4. The People Continue to Make Merry
5. Folk Dance
6. Tybalt Meets Mercutio
7. Tybalt and Mercutio Fight
8. Mercutio Dies
9. Romeo Decides to Avenge Mercutio's Death
10. Finale
See all 26 tracks on this disc

Customer Reviews

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4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great 26 Sep 2009
By enthusiast TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
This is a marvelous score. I must confess a tendency to underestimate greatness of Prokofiev and then - this has happened again and again - to discover something more from his output that just must be called a masterpiece. I suppose it is because his voice changed over the years ... from his strident early music to his more conservative (and actually greater) later years: this always seemed the opposite to what a composer living through the 20th Century should have done. Anyway, this score is maginificent.

And the performance - the LSO is stunning (as so often in recordings with Previn from this period) and the recording is excellent too. Previn is an ideal conductor for this music ... following the drama, maintaining a pulse so that as a piece of pure music it is not too episodic.

Wonderful. Buy it.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Class classic 24 Dec 2007
By Jon Chambers TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Ballet scores don't come any better than this. Prokofiev's score is an order of magnitude greater than Tchaikovsky's, and this classic version by Previn and the LSO does full justice to superlative music. It is intelligent, sensual and witty and offers outstanding value.

Prokofiev's score manages to match Shakespeare's drama in its intensity, complexity and economy. A notable feature of the play is its time compression. In the world of the play, all the action takes place in three or four days. In stage-time, this is reduced to a mere trice: 'the two-hour's traffic of our stage'. In Prokofiev's version, ideas come equally thick and fast - and enough of them to last most composers a lifetime. What's more, like the play, the ballet score is full of contrasts: ravishing harmonies one minute and equally delicious discords the next. Subtle undertones, like the threatening bass-line at the opening of No 19 (Balcony scene), do the job of Shakespearean double entendre - 'Ask for me tomorrow and you shall find me a grave man'.

Previn's LSO version is well able to cope with all these subtleties and contrasts. As well as the poetry, wit and violence of both play and score, Romeo and Juliet is also extremely coarse: witness the Nurse's vulgarities and the whole Elizabethan fixation with the bawdy and profane. The earthy raspberry in number 17 reflects this. Elsewhere, the Balcony scene (again) features an organ solo whose tones are distant, eerie and sepulchral, combining the ideas of marriage and funeral. The upper strings in No 35, meanwhile (Romeo decides to avenge Mercutio's death), convincingly evoke slashing swords. By such means does Previn bring us closer to the atmosphere of Shakespeare's play.

The notes tell us that the original recording was made in 1973. The digital remastering of 1987 has preserved the exuberance and vitality of an excellent recording. It may be a bit long in the tooth, but so is the woeful story of Juliet and her Romeo.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Still the best version. 27 Nov 2011
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I wore out the cassette tape that I had of this recording, and so it was time to upgrade to CD. Just gorgeous. My favourite ballet score, in my favourite recording. Previn and the LSO in the 70's were magic.
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3.0 out of 5 stars dodgy mp3 tracks 16 Feb 2010
By Sara N
Format:MP3 Download
Don't buy the mp3 album as there are problems with some of the tracks (you can hear an example if you click on the preview of the second track on the second album). The first cd seemed fine, but the first five or six tracks on the second album have some electronic interference. I've told Amazon (15 Feb 2010) and they say they will be removing it from the site.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I was very excited about recieving this CD as I adore Prokofiev especially his famous "The Montagues and The Capulets". I was confused by the CD sleeve as it did not clearly identify which track was which tune as it listed them as scenes from the ballet - not helpful to someone who merely appreciates the music. Also the recording quality of the said track was not as I had hoped - it made a very magestic and extraordinary piece sound quite muted and average. If you want this album to appreciate the overall ballet, it is fine and will satisfy your wants. If you are looking for a CD you can sit and be entertained by - look elsewhere.
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