Of Beauty & Light: The Music of Philip Glass

Of Beauty & Light: The Music of Philip Glass

     
 

Naxos' bargain-priced compilation of three of its previously released discs of music by Philip Glass is especially valuable because it consists entirely of works for orchestra, a genre in which he is not especially well represented on recordings. (Many of his film scores are written for orchestra, but his absolute music -- symphonies and concertos -- isn't as widely… See more details below

Overview

Naxos' bargain-priced compilation of three of its previously released discs of music by Philip Glass is especially valuable because it consists entirely of works for orchestra, a genre in which he is not especially well represented on recordings. (Many of his film scores are written for orchestra, but his absolute music -- symphonies and concertos -- isn't as widely known.) Glass came to the symphony relatively late in his career; he wrote his first in 1992, his "Low Symphony," based on the several tracks from David Bowie's and Brian Eno's 1977 album of the same name. Naxos' collection includes his "Second" (1994), "Third" (1994), and "Fourth," (1996) and the "Heroes Symphony," based on another album by Bowie and Eno. His distinctive "Violin Concerto" (1987), written for Paul Zukofsky, is probably the most substantial and fully satisfying work in the set, which also includes two instrumental selections from the opera "Akhnaten," the symphonic poem "The Light," and the orchestral version of "Company," originally for string quartet. All of the performances are very good, but Marin Alsop's readings of the symphonies, with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, are especially vibrant. Adele Anthony's performance of the "Violin Concerto," with the Ulster Orchestra, led by Takuo Yuasa is thrillingly virtuosic. Naxos includes a bonus disc, Sonic Rebellion, that is a sampler of newer classical music likely to appeal to the kind of listener who's drawn to musical mavericks like Glass. The collection is wonderfully eclectic, including composers as diverse as Rautavaara, Cage, Nancarrow, Henze, Riley, Wuorinen, Ligeti, Scelsi, Gubaidulina, and Adams, and should whet the appetite of fans of new music to look into the Naxos catalog.

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Product Details

Release Date:
03/25/2008
Label:
Naxos
UPC:
0747313404032
catalogNumber:
8504040
Rank:
156629

Tracks

  1. The Light, for orchestra  - Philip Glass  - Marin Alsop  -  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  2. Symphony No. 4 ("Heroes"), for orchestra  - Philip Glass  - Marin Alsop  -  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  3. Symphony No. 3, for strings  - Philip Glass  - Marin Alsop  -  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  4. Symphony No. 2, for orchestra  - Philip Glass  - Marin Alsop  -  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  5. Company, for string quartet/string orchestra  - Philip Glass  - Tim Smith  -  Ulster Orchestra  - Takuo Yuasa
  6. Violin Concerto  - Philip Glass  - Tim Smith  -  Ulster Orchestra  - Takuo Yuasa  - Adele Anthony
  7. Akhnaten, opera: Prelude  - Philip Glass  - Tim Smith  -  Ulster Orchestra  - Takuo Yuasa
  8. Akhnaten, opera: Dance (Act II, Scene III)  - Philip Glass  - Tim Smith  -  Ulster Orchestra  - Takuo Yuasa
  9. Symphony No. 4 ("Heroes"), for orchestra: Neuköln  - Philip Glass  - Marin Alsop  -  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  10. Threnody (for the Victims of Hiroshima), for 52 strings  - Krzysztof Penderecki  -  Polish National Symphony Orchestra  - Antoni Wit
  11. Toccata for violin & player piano  - Conlon Nancarrow  -  Continuum  - Joel Sachs  - Cheryl Seltzer
  12. Sonatas and Interludes, for prepared piano: First Interlude  - John Cage  - Boris Berman
  13. Fünf Nachtstücke, for violin & piano: 1. Elegie  - Hans Werner Henze  - Peter Sheppard Skærved  - Aaron Shorr
  14. Quattro Pezzi su una nota sola (Four Pieces on Only One Note), for 25 musicians: 1.  - Giacinto Scelsi  - Hans Zender  -  Saarbrucken Radio Symphony Orchestra
  15. In C, for unspecified performers: [Excerpt]  - Terry Riley  - Paul Hillier  -  Ars Nova Copenhagen  -  Percurama Percussion Ensemble
  16. String Quartet No 2  - Charles Wuorinen  -  Group for Contemporary Music
  17. Déserts for brass, percussion, piano & tape: Beginning  - Edgard Varèse  - Christopher Lyndon-Gee  -  Polish National Symphony Orchestra  - Maryse Castets
  18. Songs, Drones and Refrains of Death, for baritone, electric guitar & double bass, amplified piano & harpsichord, & 2 percissionists: Death Drone 2  - George Crumb  - Nicholas Isherwood  -  Art Nouveau Ensemble  - Fuat Kent
  19. Bagatelles (6) for wind quintet: Allegro grazioso  - György Ligeti  -  Albert Schweitzer Quintet
  20. Silenzio, pieces (5) for bayan, violin & cello: II  - Sofia Gubaídulína  - Maria Kliegel  - Elsbeth Moser  - Kathrin Rabus
  21. Beta, electronic work  - Jørgen Plaetner  - Jørgen Plaetner
  22. Shaker Loops, for 7 strings or string orchestra: A Final Shaking  - John Adams  - Marin Alsop  - Nathan Gunn  -  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  23. Piano Concerto No.1  - Einojuhani Rautavaara  -  Royal Scottish National Orchestra  - Hannu Lintu  - Laura Mikkola
  24. Fratres, for strings & percussion  - Arvo Pärt  - Tamás Benedek  -  Hungarian State Opera Orchestra

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