FAVOURITE ORCHESTRAL CLASSICS

Philharmonic Concert Orchestra / Iain Sutherland
SOMM ARIADNE 5012 [78’25”]

My review of the last album by these artistes* finished with “… let us hope that Iain might have some more similar tapes in his archive”, and here we are: 19 tracks recorded in Munich (June 1988) and Hanover (December 1992). Few conductors are as accomplished as the veteran Scot in the lighter orchestral music on this release.

The opening number from the 17th century Marc-Antoine Charpentier’s Prelude (Te Deum), the original Eurovision signature tune. Then there is the tragically short-lived black English composer Samuel Coleridge Taylor’s La Caprice de Nanette from his Petite Suite de Concert, and popular pieces like Mascagni’s Intermezzo (Cavalleria Rusticana), J S Bach’s Sheep May Safely Graze in Sir William Walton’s arrangement, de Falla’s Ritual Fire Dance (El Amor Brujo), Copland’s Hoe-Down (Rodeo), Grieg’s Norwegian Rustic Dance (‘Lyric Suite’) and, my much-liked, Wedding Day at Troldhaugen, and Khachaturian’s Galop (Masquerade Suite) and Sabre Dance (Gayane)En Bateau (Petite Suite) by Debussy also pops up again. Delius supplies the two longest tracks (music and titles): On Hearing the First Cuckoo in Spring and The Walk in the Paradise Garden (A Village Romeo and Juliet). Other tracks come from Prokoviev, Bizet, Mendelssohn, Stravinsky, Puccini and Tchaikovsky.

Mention must again be made of the high-quality transfer and mastering achieved by Paul Arden-Taylor. There are also seven pages of Robert Matthew-Walker’s readable booklet notes, as well as a couple on the Maestro, all very clearly printed. It is a pity there is an absence of any information about the first-rate orchestra.

Hats off once more to SOMM Recordings with the continued hope it may still have more of our kind of music up its sleeves.

*Great Classic Film Music, Volume II (Ariadne 5009), 2020

© Peter Burt 2021

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