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  • Roussel: Symphony Nos. 2-4 & Ballets
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Roussel: Symphony Nos. 2-4 & Ballets Original recording remastered


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Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         


Disc 1:

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
  1. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act I: IntroductionOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:54£0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act I: Jeux des Éphèbes et des ViergesOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 2:52£0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act I: Danse du labyrintheOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 3:16£0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act I: Bacchus apparaît (la danse est interrompue)Orchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:35£0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act I: Thésée et ses compagnons se précipitentOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 2:44£0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act I: Danse de BacchusOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 4:33£0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: IntroductionOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 3:07£0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: Réveil d' ArianeOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 2:17£0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: Bacchus danse seulOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:48£0.99  Buy MP3 
10. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: Le baiserOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:10£0.99  Buy MP3 
11. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: L'enchantment dionysiaqueOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:03£0.99  Buy MP3 
12. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: La Thiase défileOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre0:38£0.99  Buy MP3 
13. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: Danse d' ArianeOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 3:33£0.99  Buy MP3 
14. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: Danse d' Ariane et de BacchusOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre0:59£0.99  Buy MP3 
15. Bacchus et Ariane, Op.43, Act II: BacchanaleOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 4:35£0.99  Buy MP3 
16. Symphony No. 2 in B flat major, Op.23 (2006 - Remaster): Introduction et allegro (lent - animé - modéré)Colonne Orchestre16:38Album Only
17. Symphony No. 2 in B flat major, Op.23 (2006 - Remaster): Scherzo (modéré - lent - modéré)Colonne Orchestre 9:02£0.99  Buy MP3 
18. Symphony No. 2 in B flat major, Op.23 (2006 - Remaster): Adagio et finale (très lent - modérément animé)Colonne Orchestre15:15Album Only


Disc 2:

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
  1. Le Festin de l'Araignée: Fragments symphoniques: PréludeOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 3:56£0.99  Buy MP3 
  2. Le Festin de l'Araignée: Fragments symphoniques: Entrée des fourmisOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:20£0.99  Buy MP3 
  3. Le Festin de l'Araignée: Fragments symphoniques: Danse du papillonOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 3:22£0.99  Buy MP3 
  4. Le Festin de l'Araignée: Fragments symphoniques: Éclosion de l'ÉphémèreOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:48£0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. Le Festin de l'Araignée: Fragments symphoniques: Danse de l'ÉphémèreOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 3:23£0.99  Buy MP3 
  6. Le Festin de l'Araignée: Fragments symphoniques: Funérailles de l'ÉphémèreOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 2:07£0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. Le Festin de l'Araignée: Fragments symphoniques: La nuit tombe sur le jardin solitaireOrchestre National De France/Georges Prêtre 1:26£0.99  Buy MP3 
  8. Symphony No.3 in G minor Op.42 (2006 - Remaster): I. Allegro vivoAndré Cluytens/Georges Tessier /Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire 5:33£0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. Symphony No.3 in G minor Op.42 (2006 - Remaster): II. Adagio - AndanteAndré Cluytens/Georges Tessier /Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire 9:24£0.99  Buy MP3 
10. Symphony No.3 in G minor Op.42 (2006 - Remaster): III. VivaceAndré Cluytens/Georges Tessier /Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire 3:07£0.99  Buy MP3 
11. Symphony No.3 in G minor Op.42 (2006 - Remaster): IV. Allegro con spiritoAndré Cluytens/Georges Tessier /Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire 6:15£0.99  Buy MP3 
12. Sinfonietta for String Orchestra, Op.52 (2006 - Remaster): I. Allegro moltoAndré Cluytens/Orchestre De La Société Des Concerts Du Conservatoire 3:18£0.99  Buy MP3 
13. Sinfonietta for String Orchestra, Op.52 (2006 - Remaster): II. AndanteAndré Cluytens/Orchestre De La Société Des Concerts Du Conservatoire 2:33£0.99  Buy MP3 
14. Sinfonietta for String Orchestra, Op.52 (2006 - Remaster): III. AllegroAndré Cluytens/Orchestre De La Société Des Concerts Du Conservatoire 3:19£0.99  Buy MP3 
15. Symphony No. 4 in A Op. 53 (2006 - Remaster): Allegro con brioAndré Cluytens/Orchestre De La Société Des Concerts Du Conservatoire 6:25£0.99  Buy MP3 
16. Symphony No. 4 in A Op. 53 (2006 - Remaster): Lento moltoAndré Cluytens/Orchestre De La Société Des Concerts Du Conservatoire 9:03£0.99  Buy MP3 
17. Symphony No. 4 in A Op. 53 (2006 - Remaster): Allegro scherzandoAndré Cluytens/Orchestre De La Société Des Concerts Du Conservatoire 3:09£0.99  Buy MP3 
18. Symphony No. 4 in A Op. 53 (2006 - Remaster): Allegro moltoAndré Cluytens/Orchestre De La Société Des Concerts Du Conservatoire 4:13£0.99  Buy MP3 

Customer Reviews

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Amazon.com: 4 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
A great Roussel anthology 31 Oct. 2007
By Sam - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The only Roussel anthology currently available (there used to be one on Erato/Warner before), this unexpensive 2 CD set gathers all of this composer's main orchestral works.

It reproduces the content of a CD previously released (and then deleted) by EMI on their L'Esprit Francais series - the complete Bacchus et Ariane and the Festin de L'Araignee suite by Pretre. Whereas Pretre's impressionist touch is marvellous in the Spider's Feast, his Bacchus (an altogether much different ballet) lacks the necessary rhythmic contrasts, and sounds pointless in that he conducts it as absolute music without taking the plot of the ballet into account. The sound lacks focus too. Bacchus proves the one disappointment in this otherwise excellent set - but then EMI had no alternative recording on their catalogue. You should turn to Tortelier on Chandos and most of all Martinon on Erato/Warner (if you manage to find it!) for a better rendition of the complete ballet.

But everything else is absolutely first class. Though lesser known than Munch's, Cluytens' recordings are committed, red-blooded performances - more rhythmically reliable than those of the Alsatian conductor, who was Roussel's pupil and considered the main ambassador of his music. The Sinfonietta had already been issued on EMI's former 2-CD Artist Series in the 1990s, and then on Testament, whereas this is the first appearance of symphonies no. 3 and 4 on CD on EMI (Testament had already released them with the Sinfonietta). These recordings sound their age, but this is overall a minor drawback.

The real surprise is the reissue of a recording of symphony no. 2 that had totally fallen into oblivion - the one of Pierre Dervaux, another underrated Belgian conductor. This performance is so intense and haunting in its despair that it clearly supersedes other recordings, even the one by Martinon, here much less inspired than in Roussel's ballets.

So if you are looking for a comprehensive collection of Roussel's orchestral music, look no further. It will only disappoint those looking for modern digital sound...
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Rousing Roussel 28 Dec. 2006
By Michael Brad Richman - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
EMI has had their share of questionable reissues lately, but with the "Gemini" series, the label's new incredibly inexpensive two-disc budget classical line, they've produced some real winners. A recent batch of releases (November 21, 2006) features a half-dozen must have titles, including this one showcasing the French composer Roussel. The highlight here is classic performances of the 3rd and 4th Symphonies, and the less frequently recorded Sinfonietta, by Andre Cluytens and the Orchestre de la Societe des Concerts du Conservatoire from the mid 1960s. If you didn't plunk down $20 four years ago for the Cluytens Testament CD like I did (Roussel: Symphonies Nos. 3 & 4; Bacchus & Ariane Suite; Sinfonietta -- see my review), then you have all the more reason to buy this two-fer. Despite this I am very glad to have purchased this set for the selections on CD 1. I have many Bacchus et Ariane Suites (including one by Cluytens on that aforementioned Testament), but no complete performances of the work, and Georges Pretre and the French National Orchestra's early digital recording is magical. However, the real discovery was Pierre Dervaux and Orchestre Colonne's account of the 2nd Symphony. This is a new work for me, and a relatively new conductor for me as well, having recently stumbled upon a stunning 3CD set of entitled Dervaux plays D'Indy, Pierne, and Rabaud. It is a subdued Symphony, requiring several listenings before I could fully process its beauty, but very rewarding after having done so. In all, this is rousing Roussel, and another delightful reissue from my current favorite series -- Gemini!!!
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Excellent performances and recording 6 April 2007
By J. A. Bradley - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I purchased this set yesterday having previously only been exposed to Roussel by a rather poor cassette from about twenty years ago of the 3rd symphony. I was totally unfamiliar with the other pieces in this set, but now I am a fan of them all. Wonderful music very well performed, at an amazing price, considering the quality.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
An excellent release and introduction to the music of Rousell 31 Dec. 2011
By Thomas Martin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Finding the very best, or at a minimum, the best recording of a composition(s) I don't know can be very frustrating. "Sam" says Pretre's reading of Bacchus et Ariane "... lacks the necessary rhythmic contrasts, and sounds pointless in that he conducts it as absolute music without taking the plot of the ballet into account. The sound lacks focus too..."; while Mr. Richman says of the same recording that "Georges Pretre and the French National Orchestra's early digital recording is magical". In the end, I went with Gramophone (a music magazine that I respect for its music integrity and the musical expertise of its contributors) that wrote:

"This is a performance of great vigour and excitement, of real anguished intensity at Ariadne's lonely awakening on the cliffs of Naxos, and of barbaric jubilance--truly Dionysian--in the music for Bacchus and his train. The problem with Roussel is that he is at least as un-French as he is French. An audience vaguely expecting Ravel-but-different or not-quiteDebussy is as bound to be disappointed as a conductor who performs him that way is bound to fail. His harmonies are seldom sumptuous (though when they are they can be headily so), far more often they are pungent, as are his colours, which are rarely luscious. The skeleton of his music is often close to the surface, and it is sometimes hard to tell whether it is of bone or steel. Above all, and perhaps most difficult to accept, he is not obviously tuneful. His melodies do have real distinction and individuality, but it is more difficult than with most composers to detach them from their context: the whole function of the brief but noble theme associated with Ariadne, for example, is to undergo transformation, as she herself is transformed from bereft and abducted princess to the consort of a God--the theme is not achieved at its first appearance, and its translated version needs the memory of its former self to acquire full stature. And finally there is Roussel's ferocious and, one might be tempted to say, quite un-Gallic energy, close at times to Prokofiev, once or twice to the more orgiastic pages of Richard Strauss.

So it should not seem too back-handed a compliment to say how admirably Prêtre and his orchestra conceal their nationality--or rather how well they demonstrate that not all that is French is 'Gallic'. It is a performance of great vigour and excitement, of real anguished intensity at Ariadne's lonely awakening on the cliffs of Naxos, and of barbaric jubilance--truly Dionysian--in the music for Bacchus and his train. The sheer unexpectedness of Roussel's invention is given full value: the dazzling tangle of bright sounds for Bacchus's spell over Ariadne, for example--.and there is no lack of grace or delicacy in her music. The playing is very fine--there is some particularly heroic whooping from the horns--and the recording is most satisfying in its breadth of dynamic and its undiluted presentation of colour.

The earlier, slighter, more ingratiatingly charmful score of Le festin d'araignee is no less well characterized, with especially beautiful string playing and abundant fanciful delicacy".

-- Gramophone [4/1986]
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