- Symphony No.1
- Symphony No.2 "Le Double"
- Violin Concerto "L'Arbre des Songes"
- Sonnets (2) by Jean Cassou
- Timbres, espace, mouvement, ou La Nuit étoilée for orchestra
- Prière pour Nous Autre Charnels for tenor (and bass) & organ
- Métaboles for orchestra
- Cello Concerto "Tout un Monde Lointain. . . "
- Mystere de l'instant, for orchestra
- The Shadows of Time, for orchestra
One of the most distinctive and distinguished composers of the 20th century's latter half, Henri Dutilleux has written a relatively small quantity of very high-quality music. For example, it takes less than three-and-a-half hours to listen to his complete orchestral works, assembled here in performances by Yan Pascal Tortelier and the BBC Philharmonic that have already been much praised in their previous individual releases. Overshadowed during the post-war years by his more avant-garde colleagues, Dutilleux showed little interest in serialism or other musical doctrines of the day. Rooted in the refinement of Debussy and the propulsion of Stravinsky, his music has evolved along an ever more individual path. Dating from the 1950s, Dutilleux's two masterfully orchestrated symphonies are a superb introduction to his style, full of rhythmic drive and beguiling harmonies; the BBC Philharmonic gives them the virtuoso performance they require in this Gramophone award-winning recording. Dutilleux's subsequent works leave conventional forms behind and adopt poetic titles. L'Arbre des songes (1985) is a violin concerto composed for Isaac Stern, and Tout un monde lointain (1970) is a cello concerto dedicated to Mstislav Rostropovich; both are among the most important solo works of the time for their instruments. The dynamic Métaboles (1964) is a dazzling showpiece, and like the more reflective Timbres, espace, mouvement (1978), it receives an engrossing performance here. The two most recent works are as intriguing as anything that has come before in the composer's career: Mystèere de l'instant (1989) evokes ephemeral but vivid impressions, whereas The Shadows of Time (1997) -- released for the first time in this box set -- responds to a variety of stimuli, ranging from Shakespeare to the Holocaust, adding a boy soprano in one section. The high quotient of beauty and inspiration to be encountered throughout this set should convince anyone of Dutilleux's lasting importance in the 20th-century musical landscape, and the remarkably fine sound quality of Chandos' recordings is icing on the cake.