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Strauss/ Ravel: Jurowski (Metamorphosen/ Piano Concerto/ Bourgeois Gentilhomme) [Blu-ray] [2010]

Hélène Grimaud , Chamber Orchestra Of Europe    Exempt   Blu-ray
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: £29.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Hélène Grimaud, Chamber Orchestra Of Europe
  • Format: Classical, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: EUROARTS
  • DVD Release Date: 13 Dec 2010
  • Run Time: 81 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00442M0SU
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 128,843 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

This programme captures the musical encounter between one of the most talented conductors of his generation with arguably the best chamber orchestra musicians. They are joined by worldwide renowned pianist Hélène Grimaud in a programme featuring Strauss and Ravel, a perfect combination of familiar repertoire and works that deserve to be discovered. Vladimir Jurowski surprises the listener by a fresh style and approach. In combination with the charming and incisive Grimaud, he invites us to drift away with this extraordinary performance. Both artists are very thoughtful about the music they make and create a pure enjoyment for ear and eye. The award-winning Hélène Grimaud presents a lively rendition of Ravel's concerto. Together with the orchestra lyricism and sonorous harmonies are expertly teased out.

Product Description

EURA 3078734; EURARTS - Germania;


Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Discovering a New Beauty of Music!! 15 Jun 2011
By Y. Park
What a wonderful musical experience! The works of R. Strauss and Ravel played here may not be very popular but you will be mesmerized by their beauty, depth, and "freshness". All are excellent but my favorite is Ravel's piano concerto in G. Especially, 2nd movement brings such peace and gentle joy. The rendition of the pianist is precise and musical. The young conductor Vladimir Jurowski seems to be very good at expressing subtle nuance and inner detail of each work. Technically, both video and audio quality is at top notch. Very highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By I. Giles HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
This is a fine concert and the audience is rightly highly enthusiastic. It should give continued pleasure upon repeated viewing for those whom the program appeals but this is not the only version of the Ravel recently recorded and Argerich provides stiff opposition.

The concert opens with a particularly fine rendering of Strauss' Metamorphosen for 23 solo strings. This was created as a response to the damaging effect of the WW2 upon cultural and artistic pre-war life. This knowledge is not a prerequisite to enjoying or appreciating the music however. I first came to know this piece via a fine performance given by the strings of the BPO under the expert guidance of that Strauss specialist, Herbert von Karajan. Good though that recording was at the time, I have found this to be even more enjoyable and sonically enlightening. This is partly because of the extra clarity provided by the excellent 5.1 DTS sound, partly because of the visual advantage of being able to watch the way the piece develops and lastly, because of the excellent playing of the COE's strings. This is a complex but essentially lyrical piece and the advantages listed above enable the viewer greater access to the music as it progresses under the clear direction of Jurowsky.

Much the same can be said of the last piece, the Bourgeois Gentilhomme suite that Strauss created from the incidental music he had written earlier to accompany a stage work. I first came across this on a recording made by the Chicago SO conducted by another Strauss specialist, Fritz Reiner. This is considerably better for all the reasons appropriate to the Metamorphosen but even more so as regards the improved recording quality.
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Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jurowski and Grimaud a heavenly duo 14 Aug 2011
By Ultrarunner - Published on Amazon.com
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Vladimir Jurowski a young conductor, brilliantly directs the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. His fast tempi are right for the pieces he conducts with passion. Metamorphosen for twenty-three strings,was written in Nazi Germany in the closing months of the war.Indeed,at the conclusion of the manuscript, Strauss wrote "In Memoriam"-in memory of the Germany then being occupied by the Allied forces. Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme op 60,was written as a thank you offering to Max Reinhardt, who had transformed the Dresden production of Der Rosenkavlier. Hofmannsthal, Strauss' Librettist had adopted Moliere's play Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme, with incidental dances and there was also to be a 30 minute opera Ariadne auf Naxos.This version was performed in Stuttgart 1912. It was a failure. Some of the incidental music was taken from the play and used in the new opera Adriane auf Naxos first performed in 1916. The piece conducted by Jurowski,emphasizes the gentle themes. See if you can pick the music from Le Bourgeois, Strauss used in his opera to be.

Helene Grimaud and Vladimir Jurowski are a dream team, both young. The Ravel Concerto in G, first and third movements are influenced by the jazz influences of Gershwin,whose rhythms she handles well. However, it is the Adagio Assai, the second movement,where she shows her skills. The opening part is played without the backing of the orchestra,is melting beautiful. So much in fact, one of the young woman violinists in the orchestra sways to her playing. The camera captures another young orchestra member amazed at what she is hearing. I played this piece over and over again. How can one place it into words, they are so meaningless and shallow.You must experience it. Beauty is but a frail flower, lingering only briefly,then is no more. For in the now is eternity.In memory of my dear departed Paula, a concert pianist,who died so tragically young. My daughter is named after her. Such is the power of music. This divine movement. May you enjoy this sublime Bluray as I have.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Discovering a New Beauty of Music!! 14 Jun 2011
By Y. Park - Published on Amazon.com
What a wonderful musical experience! The works of R. Strauss and Ravel played here may not be very popular but you will be mesmerized by their beauty, depth, and "freshness". All are excellent but my favorite is Ravel's piano concerto in G. Especially, 2nd movement brings such peace and gentle joy. The rendition of the pianist is precise and musical. The young conductor Vladimir Jurowski seems to be very good at expressing subtle nuance and inner detail of each work. Technically, both video and audio quality is at top notch. Very highly recommended!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent performances of relatively unfamiliar Strauss plus an enjoyable Ravel concerto 8 Oct 2012
By I. Giles - Published on Amazon.com
This is a fine concert and the audience is rightly highly enthusiastic. It should give continued pleasure upon repeated viewing for those whom the program appeals but this is not the only version of the Ravel recently recorded and Argerich provides stiff opposition.

The concert opens with a particularly fine rendering of Strauss' Metamorphosen for 23 solo strings. This was created as a response to the damaging effect of the WW2 upon cultural and artistic pre-war life. This knowledge is not a prerequisite to enjoying or appreciating the music however. I first came to know this piece via a fine performance given by the strings of the BPO under the expert guidance of that Strauss specialist, Herbert von Karajan. Good though that recording was at the time, I have found this to be even more enjoyable and sonically enlightening. This is partly because of the extra clarity provided by the excellent 5.1 DTS sound, partly because of the visual advantage of being able to watch the way the piece develops and lastly, because of the excellent playing of the COE's strings. This is a complex but essentially lyrical piece and the advantages listed above enable the viewer greater access to the music as it progresses under the clear direction of Jurowsky.

Much the same can be said of the last piece, the Bourgeois Gentilhomme suite that Strauss created from the incidental music he had written earlier to accompany a stage work. I first came across this on a recording made by the Chicago SO conducted by another Strauss specialist, Fritz Reiner. This is considerably better for all the reasons appropriate to the Metamorphosen but even more so as regards the improved recording quality. This is essentially a light-weight piece with much tongue-in-the-cheek treatment of Lully-like music but brought right up to date (1945). The humour of the piece needs to be straight-laced to be most effective and this is certainly achieved here although the evident amusement shared by members of the orchestra is regularly caught by the camera operators.

The Ravel concerto is enthusiastically received by the packed audience and Helene Grimaud is a popular soloist of considerable talent. All of this is clearly displayed on this recording which is admirably able to bring out all the subtleties of Ravel's scoring. However, it is in the matter of subtlety that Argerich wins over Grimaud in my opinion and she consistently displays a greater range of touch in terms of shading and graduations of tonal control. There is also a greater awareness of the important jazz idiom and the music is able to 'swing' more freely within a tightly controlled overall rhythmic grip. However, I am aware that Argerich has been criticised by at least one good reviewer that I respect, for being too free in her interpretation for his personal taste. I am therefore sure that there will be a body of opinion that will prefer Grimaud's straighter and more forthright approach to Ravel whatever my opinion as described above. All a matter of personal taste perhaps plus knowing the relative playing styles of the pianists.

Two things are for certain though and they are the excellence of the razor sharp conducting of Jurowsky and the fine orchestral playing. In particular as regards the latter, I would like to mention the positively outstanding performance of the trumpeter, Nicholas Thompson, in the last two pieces which both contain vital passages of considerable difficulty which he despatches with apparent nonchalant ease!

The recording is visually sharp and of good colour definition. The sound is excellent too and is presented in DTS 5.1 and stereo.

This is a very enjoyable concert with two outstanding performances included of the Strauss pieces. The Ravel is also very well played and, for my taste, only lacks the sort of magical touch that Argerich brings to her alternative performance. The content of the two concerts is otherwise totally different so perhaps the best answer is to own both which is how I have been able to write this review.
In view of all the above I feel that this disc should give lots of enjoyment to anyone interested in the program, particularly if they are also fans of Grimaud rather than Argerich. For those reasons I feel that a fair assessment is 4 stars in this case.
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