Kancheli - STYX

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Bengti
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Kancheli - STYX

Post by Bengti » Tue Aug 02, 2005 12:20 am

Must commend this awesome work of Georgian composer Kancheli, on DG by Yuri Bashmet and the Marvinsky Orchestra/Gergiev. Its a viola concerto/tone poem for chorus and full orchestra - depicting the living mortal world, Hades and the River Styx that separates the 2 in Greek Mythology. The solo viola represents Styx, and its immediately evocative, and technically challenging to boot.

Kancheli's music is indeed as publicised in the blurp - emotionally involving and capable of drawing the listener into its sound world instantly. Personally, I hear echoes of Rimsky's Scherazade, and towards the end Duka's Sorcerer's Apprentice, but i would stop short of declaring the writing derivative. The work argues its way through these passages on its own merits, and perhaps the resemblances are intentional.

Recorded sound is very good, balance between the (relatively) small sound of the viola and its huge supporting forces is as good as it gets.

While many mourn the coming death of classical music, Kancheli (along with Gojidov, Higdon, Knussen etc) demonstrate that we may be on the cusp of resurgence. Grab this now, and be enriched.

Beng@Singapore

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Post by Corlyss_D » Tue Aug 02, 2005 12:24 am

Hey, Beng! Welcome to the Board! Thanks for the recommendation. We don't have enough viola repertoire and if this is any good, it will be a welcome addition.
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Bengti
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Post by Bengti » Tue Aug 02, 2005 12:26 am

yeah surprised me too when the notes said that 48 concerti have been written for Yuri Bashmet's viola skills alone. But money is on Kancheli's being one of the finest, even if we dont get to hear the other 40 odd.

johnQpublic
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Post by johnQpublic » Tue Aug 02, 2005 7:11 am

There are some haunting moments in "Styx".

Some have argued elsewhere that "Styx" isn't Kancheli's best. But I like it it a plenty.

UB

Post by UB » Tue Aug 02, 2005 12:17 pm

I find that Styx has sections that sounds like earlier Kancheli with sharp edges - that is it had some of the soundworld of symphonies #3-5. For me that is a positive virtue.

Bengti
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Post by Bengti » Tue Aug 02, 2005 7:18 pm

Hey Guys

Earphones for 2 days at work helped me to get acquainted with Styx, but transfering it over to my (small) tivoli system, it becomes a lot more challenging to listen to - dynamic range is so wide that the tiniest ambient noise can detract from the softer passages.

What do you guys listen to it on ? Any better on a more powerful system ? I may drop by the Bower and Wilkinson showroom and treat myself to a free listen.

UB - which label put out his symphonies ?

UB

Post by UB » Tue Aug 02, 2005 8:35 pm

Bengti - Olympia and Melodiya did most of them originally and a couple of companies have re-issued some of them. A good start is Olympia 401 - if it is still in print - for 3 and 6 and then Ondine 829 for 1, 4 and 5.

Here is a good site for Kancheli information.

Bengti
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Ondine and Olympia

Post by Bengti » Tue Aug 02, 2005 11:00 pm

Thanks UB, will check around but hardly see these labels in Singapore. If Styx hadnt come out on DG, I prob wouldnt get it here.

UB

Post by UB » Wed Aug 03, 2005 5:11 am

Bengti - Look for EMI cd with Part and Kancheli's 3rd symphonies. Part's 3rd might surprise you it you only know his later neo-spiritual works.

Bengti
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Post by Bengti » Wed Aug 03, 2005 7:28 am

Thanks UB. Will check out. Still trying to manage the dynamic range on Styx.

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Post by Corlyss_D » Wed Aug 03, 2005 10:36 am

UB wrote:Bengti - Look for EMI cd with Part and Kancheli's 3rd symphonies. Part's 3rd might surprise you it you only know his later neo-spiritual works.
I like Part's 3rd.

Bengti, this better not be some trick to get a medievalist to listen to AC, because I just bought the Kancheli . . . :wink:
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Modernistfan
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Post by Modernistfan » Wed Aug 03, 2005 3:13 pm

There was a complete set of the Kancheli symphonies on the Russian Beaux label. They were conducted by his long-time supporter Djansug Kakhidze. Unfortunately, that label may also have gone out of business, although Arkiv still lists some of them in stock. Most of the Olympia are also gone, except for Symphonies No. 1 and 7 with Glushchenko, which may still be available, at least in England. The Ondine is still available, as is the CPO of Symphonies 2 and 7 with Mikhail Jurowski. To my ears, the Symphony No. 1 sounds like out-takes from the Shostakovich Fourth Symphony, an influence that has been rarely acknowledged. (Maybe here is an opening for Naxos, with one of their Russian orchestras, perhaps with Anissimov or Yampolsky conducting?)

Bengti
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Good Choice !

Post by Bengti » Thu Aug 04, 2005 8:20 am

Cord,

Great acquisition, I have just listened to it on returning home from Kuala Lumpur (home of the superb Malaysian Philharmonic). Ive tweaked the Tivoli output/volume mix to catch the extreme dynamic ranges of Styx. On repeat listening, it hasnt lost any of its allure, there is real substance here - passages for the viola awe inspiring in their eloquence. Enjoy !

Modernist,

Thanks for the headsup, will look out for that. Unlikely to get here in Singapore, but who knows :) Hey, have you heard Pletnev's recording of Tanayev on DG ? I'm just getting into it, and it seems very promising. This is the Quintet and Quartet I'm referring to, with Repim, Imai, Harrell et al.

BT

Corlyss_D
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Re: Good Choice !

Post by Corlyss_D » Thu Aug 04, 2005 9:43 am

Bengti wrote: I have just listened to it on returning home from Kuala Lumpur (home of the superb Malaysian Philharmonic).
Say, Bengti, while you were there, did you happen to run into Machina Weapon, our young correspondent from Malaysia? :D
Corlyss
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Bengti
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Machina - Check In

Post by Bengti » Thu Aug 04, 2005 7:56 pm

No Cord, I was in and out for the day. Must tie up with Machina to attend a concert at the MPO together, their recent Mahler Sixth was very very good. They are blessed with very competent principals, including Philbert the timpanist.

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