Barber: Adagio for Strings / Ives: Symphony No. 3 / Copland: Quiet City, etc.

Barber: Adagio for Strings / Ives: Symphony No. 3 / Copland: Quiet City, etc.

by Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
     
 

This entry in Decca's The Originals series reissues a long-standing favorite from the Decca catalog, available as a full-price Argo CD for many years and present as an LP for as long as Decca continued to make them: Barber: Adagio for Strings by Neville Marriner and the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields.See more details below

Overview

This entry in Decca's The Originals series reissues a long-standing favorite from the Decca catalog, available as a full-price Argo CD for many years and present as an LP for as long as Decca continued to make them: Barber: Adagio for Strings by Neville Marriner and the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields. Recorded in 1976, in its LP incarnation this issue went a long way toward dispelling the notion that English orchestras were too heavy in body and provincial in tone to interpret American orchestral music in an effective way. Marriner's reading of the title work is the very model of restraint, and he employs a careful building up of mood in Barber's somber masterwork that suits it to a "T." Ives' "Symphony No. 3" is likewise well served, if delivered at a tempo that seems a shade quick, particularly in the last movement "Communion." Copland's "Quiet City," however, is just about perfect, featuring fine trumpet playing by Michael Laird and the generous reverberation that characterized St. John's in Smith Square, the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields' longtime recording "home." Cowell's "Hymn and Fuguing Tune No. 10," still relatively obscure in 1976 but in 2007 his most frequently performed orchestral work, is interpreted with sensitivity and expansiveness and features the strong solo work of oboist Celia Nicklin. Creston's "A Rumour" was not then and was not, in 2007, a famous work, but as a propulsive and clever American orchestral miniature, it fits with the rest of the program. Since Decca adopted The Originals from Deutsche Grammophon, with which it is a partner since the consolidation of the former Polygram under the Decca banner, the potential for making valuable back catalog issues available remains impressive. Decca did not have a consistent reissue program before, and some of the best Decca reissues in the past have come through licensing agreements with labels other than Decca, particularly Dutton. Barber: Adagio for Strings may seem like a comparatively conservative choice as opposed to some reissues Decca might consider, but in terms of American orchestral literature, this album was about the best album it ever made, and its return to the catalog is certainly welcome. So would be Marriner's superb 1976 recording of "Appalachian Spring" were it restored to the catalog as well.

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Product Details

Release Date:
06/12/2007
Label:
Decca
UPC:
0028947582373
catalogNumber:
000894402
Rank:
12752

Tracks

  1. Adagio for strings (or string quartet; arr. from 2nd mvt. of String Quartet), Op. 11  - Samuel Barber  - Neville Marriner  -  Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
  2. Symphony No. 3: The Camp Meeting, for orchestra, S. 3 (K. 1A3)  - Charles Ives  - Neville Marriner  -  Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
  3. Quiet City, for English horn, trumpet & strings (from the incidental music)  - Aaron Copland  - Neville Marriner  -  Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields  - Michael Laird  - Celia Nicklin
  4. Hymn and Fuguing Tune No. 10 for oboe & string orchestra, HC 813  - Henry Cowell  - Neville Marriner  -  Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields  - Celia Nicklin
  5. Rumor for orchestra  - Paul Creston  - Neville Marriner  -  Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields

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