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Sparkling Classics

Sparkling Classics

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Ref: CDG1140

16 tracks 65 min
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Music for an evening with friends

A cheerful album of favourite classical tunes. Music for party time or party mood, to blow away the cobwebs ad bring good cheer to a rainy day! Strauss, Glinka, Mozart, Offenbach, Rossini, Bizet and Dvorak on glittering form with brilliant orchestrations. Hear the champagne corks popping!

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Sparkling Classics
Music for an evening with friends

A cheerful album of favourite classical tunes. Music for party time or party mood, to blow away the cobwebs and bring good cheer to a rainy day! Strauss, Mozart, Offenbach, Rossini, Bizet and Dvorak on glittering form with brilliant orchestrations - and you can even hear the champagne corks popping!

1 Overture to Ruslan and Ludmilla Mikhail Glinka (1804-1857)
Moscow RTV Orchestra conducted by Klaus-Peter Hahn
2 Tritsch-Tratsch Polka Johann Strauss II (1825-1899)
Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra conducted by Vakhtang Kakhidze
3 Danse Bohème from Carmen Suite II Georges Bizet (1838-1875)
St Petersburg Chamber Orchestra 'Canon' conducted by Alexander Titov
4 Perpetuum Mobile Johann Strauss II
Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra conducted by Vakhtang Kakhidze
5 Can-Can No4 from Orpheus in the Underworld Jaques Offenbach (1819-1880)
Cincinatti Pops Orchestra conducted by Erich Kunzel
6 Slavonic Dance No 8 Anton Dvorak (1841-1904)
St Petersburg Radio & TV Orchestra conducted by Stanislav Gorvenko
7 Overture to Die Fledermaus (The Bat) Johann Strauss II
Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra conducted by Vakhtang Kakhidze
8 Rondo: Allegro from Eine kleine Nachtmusik Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1792)
Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Libor Pesek
9 Overture to La Vie Parisienne Jaques Offenbach
Cincinatti Pops Orchestra conducted by Erich Kunzel
10 Thunder & Lightning Polka Johann Strauss II
Innsbruck Symphony Orchestra conducted by Robert Wagner
11 Champagne Polka Johann Strauss II
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Frank Shipway
12 Wine, Women and Song Johann Strauss II
Vienna Volksoper Orchestra conducted by Carl Michalski
13 Waltz from The Merry Widow Franz Léhar (1870-1948)
Hamburg Pro Musica Symphony Orchestra conducted by Richard Müller-Lampertz
14 Galop from La Vie Parisienne Jaques Offenbach
Cincinatti Pops Orchestra conducted by Erich Kunzel
15 Can-Can No 3 from La Vie Parisienne Jaques Offenbach
Cincinatti Pops Orchestra conducted by Erich Kunzel
16 Overture to The Thieving Magpie Gioacchino Rossini (1792-1868)
Camerata St Petersburg, Orchestra of the State Hermitage conducted by Saulius Sondeckis


All tracks licensed from Countdown Media GmbH

Cover image: Still life with fruit and a glass of champagne Severin Roesen 1815-1872 © Christie's Images Ltd
CCL CDG1140
This compilation P & C 2005 Classical Communications Ltd
Made in Great Britain

Inside book:

Sparkling Classics
Music for an evening with friends

Classical music is not just about relaxation. It's also about excitement, drama, and having fun! Many of the tracks on this album are dramatic and dynamic, and many are associated with the stage, whether the formal stage of an opera house, or the less formal stage of the French cabaret.

We begin with one of the most dynamic opening musical statements ever composed. Glinka's majestic overture, with its amazing scurrying scale passages from the string instruments, was composed for his Russian opera 'Ruslan and Ludmilla'. All Glinka's ingenuity went into this opening work, which is a masterpiece of musical timing and precision. If ever you need a piece of music to give you a bit of a lift, then this must be it!

Jacques Offenbach was the King of the French cabaret scene in the late nineteenth century, and his music was performed long after his death in 1880. We have chosen two 'can-cans', a fast 'galop' and a startlingly vibrant overture to keep the cheery mood in swing. These pieces were composed in Paris in the 1860s and 1870s. At this time, 'La Gaité Parisienne' was a way of life for many artists and musicians in that rich and romantic capital city.

Bizet's 'Carmen' Suite is derived from his dramatic opera of the same name. All Bizet's music has a raw energy to it, which generates huge excitement in its listeners. Dvorak's 'Slavonic Dance', is highly rhythmic, and cheers the soul as it leaps on its way! Rossini's 'Thieving Magpie' provides further jollity, and further dynamic music, which drives forward in springing rhythms and fine melodies. The Italian Rossini was a huge admirer of Mozart's music, particularly the Viennese composer's sublime comic operas, where nuance and timing are everything: and Mozart has written it all into the music. Mozart's lovely 'Eine kleine Nachtmusik' (a little night music) is an elegant serenade, perhaps to be played outdoors at a candlelight event.

And then there is another king on this album: The Waltz King himself, Johann Strauss the Younger. Born into a family of musicians, including a famous father and two brothers, Strauss was hugely successful, violinist and composer, who conducted with equal panache, whether he was engaged by a Viennese tavern owner, or the Emperor and the royal court. Johannes Brahms ranked Strauss alongside Mozart, possibly the highest honour that one composer could bestow on another. Strauss's brilliant Viennese orchestra took the world by storm. Even Queen Victoria was amused, when Strauss performed in London during one of his extensive world tours. Strauss perfected the waltz form. He could write one for any occasion, and in waltz or polka rhythm, he could describe anything in his music from thunder and lightning to the popping of champagne corks. Strauss was also renowned for his operettas, including the famous one about the bat: 'Die Fledermaus'. This is spirited music, and it dance rhythms are bubbly and infectious. Franz Lehár followed in the Strauss tradition. Lehár's operettas were also in their turn hugely successful. The waltz from 'The Merry Widow' is one of the most famous of his melodies.


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