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CDG1039Great Ballet ClassicsA celebration of dance and ballet in a memorable programme of musical highlights from the world of theatre, performed by some of the world's great orchestras.1 Pyotr Iyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893) Waltz from Swan LakeBavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Hans Vonk2 Amilcare Ponchielli (1834-1886) Dance of the Hours from La GiocondaBudapest Philharmonic Orchestra, Andras Korodi3 Hector Berlioz (1803-1869) Danse des Sylphes from The Damnation of FaustHungarian State Orchestra, Adam Fischer4 Fryderyk Chopin (1810-1849) Waltz from Les SylphidesBerlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, Heinz Fricke5 Aram Khatchaturian (1903-1978) Sabre Dance from GayanehHungarian State Orchestra, Adam Fischer6 Pyotr Iyich Tchaikovsky Waltz of the Flowers from The NutcrackerBerlin Symphony Orchestra, Peter Wohlert7 Léo Delibes (1836-1891) Prélude & Les Chasseresses from SylviaBudapest Philharmonic Orchestra, Janós Sandór8-11 Charles Gounod (1818-1893) Ballet music from FaustBudapest Philharmonic Orchestra, Janós Sandór12 Alexander Borodin (1833-1887) Polovtsian Dances from Prince IgorSofia National Opera Orchestra and Chorus, Boris Hinchev13 Léo Delibes Czardas from CoppéliaBerlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, Heinz FrickeThis compilation p & C 2002 Classical CommunicationsCCL CDG1039Made in Great BritainAll tracks licensed from Delta Music plcThis musical celebration of ballet and dance brings together some of the most famous orchestral tunes of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The amazing stage spectacle of traditional ballet performance is mirrored in fine performances of truly inspiring music. All moods and shades of meaning can be represented in ballet, and these musical scores are among the best examples of moving and exciting works. Even without the dancers in front of us, through the music we can recreate the feelings and sensations of the ballet stories. Our programme also includes dance music from examples of that other great stage spectacle, the opera.No ballet collection could exists without at least some of Tchaikovsky's memorable scores. Swan Lake was his first ballet. It was commissioned in 1875 by the Bolshoi Ballet, but the innovative complexity of the score, in which the ballet's characters are given their own musical themes, had to wait twenty years for choreography to genuinely match it. In 1895 Swan Lake was revived in St Petersburg by Ivanov and Petipa. Their two contrasting styles proved a fine match for the score. It is from this date that the famous white swans appeared by the lakeside for the first time. The Nutcracker was to be Tchaikovsky's third and final ballet and one of his last major works. It was first performed in the presence of the Tsar in Moscow in 1892 and became an instant success. Tchaikovsky's amazing gift for good tunes has made him one of the most popular of all classical composers. The Nutcracker is based on works by ETA Hoffman and was commissioned by the Director of Moscow's Imperial Ballet. Sleeping Beauty was Tchaikovsky's second ballet score. It was first performed in January 1890 in Moscow. For Tchaikovsky the work represents the beginning of his final creative phase after years of unhappiness caused by the breakdown of his marriage of 1877.The fame of Amilcare Ponchielli rests securely on his four-act opera La Gioconda. Based on a play by Victor Hugo, it is a Venetian tale of love, indulgence, jealousy and crime and is largely remembered for the ballet music The Dance of the Hours which appears in Act 3. Hector Berlioz (1803-1869) was a French composer whose fanciful and extravagant life is mirrored in his music. His oratorio The Damnation of Faust is based on Goethe's tragedy and has several orchestral interludes including the glistening Dance of the Sylphs, an example of Mephisto's magic.Les Sylphides is a one-act ballet consisting of piano pieces written by Frederic Chopin and arranged by other composers for orchestra. Originally orchestrated by Alexander Glazunov, it was first called Chopiniana and was first performed in 1908 by the St.Petersburg Imperial Ballet. The Waltz is one of its most popular moments. The starkly primitive and driving Sabre Dance occurs at the climax of the ballet Gayne. The action takes place on an Armenian collective cotton farm and has become one the most performed works of its composer Aram Khachaturian.Léo Delibes was a child prodigy who entered the Paris conservatoire at the age of twelve where he studied under Adam, the composer of Giselle, one of the earliest of modern ballets. As a chorus master Delibes worked on Gounod's Faust for its Parisian performances. He was a composer of great skill and Coppélia was an inspiration to Tchaikovsky. ETA Hoffmann's work provided the source of the story, its magical elements and fairy tale style allowing full rein both to the dancers on stage and to our imaginations. Sylvia is based on mythological themes and is superbly scored for a large orchestra.Gounod studied in Paris at an early age and -like Delibes- he became an organist at one of Paris's larger churches. For a while he studied for the priesthood, but gave this up when he fell in love and married in 1864. His complex opera Faust dates from the 1850s. The music on this recording highlights beautiful ballet scenes from within the opera. The great medieval Russian epic, The Tale of Igor's Army, appealed to romantic Russians of the nineteenth century and especially to Alexander Borodin, who worked for many years on the opera Prince Igor. The Polovtsian Dances, which employ authentic tribal melodies, occur during an entertainment for Prince Igor.Great Ballet ClassicsCCL CDG1039P & C Classical Communications LtdMade in Great Britain
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