Friday, May 11, 2012

Massenet revisited!

I was just listening to WGBH Boston (Classical New England) this morning when my ears caught an orchestral piece of music that I'd never heard before.  Lo and behold, it was the Scenes Pittoresques, by Jules Massenet -- a charming set of four orchestral movements performed by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra on Naxos.  Captivated as I was, I looked into this further and discovered that Massenet wrote other "Scenes", including the Scenes Alsaciennes, Scenes Dramatiques, and Scenes de Feerie.  Few recordings of these works currently exist.  I counted a total of 3 or 4 on CD, including:

1. New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Jean-Yves Ossonce (Naxos)
2. Orchestre de Ia Société des Concerts du Conservatoire, Albert Wolff -- a classic Decca recording in early stereo sound (Testament, Australian Eloquence)
3. Orchestre National de l’Opéra de Monte-Carlo, John Eliot Gardiner (Erato, Apex)

I think these are highly overlooked orchestral works which probably deserve more attention!

1 comment:

  1. The famous Klavier Massent Le Cid LP has this piece. Surely that is on CD?