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Kuchar: Prokofiev – Cinderella Suites, Scythian Suite (FLAC)

Kuchar: Prokofiev - Cinderella Suites, Scythian Suite (FLAC)

Kuchar: Prokofiev – Cinderella Suites, Scythian Suite (FLAC)

Composer: Sergey Prokofiev
Orchestra: Ukrainian State Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Theodore Kuchar
Number of Discs: 2
Format: FLAC (tracks)
Label: Naxos
Catalogue: 8550968-69
Release: 1994
Size: 538 MB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: cover

CD 01
Cinderella Suite No. 1, Op. 107
01. I. Introduction
02. II. Pas de Chat
03. III. Quarrel
04. IV. Fairy Godmother and Fairy Winter
05. V. Mazurka
06. VI. Cinderella Goes to the Ball
07. VII. Cinderella’s Waltz
08. VIII. Midnight

Cinderella Suite No. 2, Op. 108
09. I. Cinderella’s Dreams
10. II. Dancing Lesson and Gavotte
11. III. Spring Fairy and Summer Fairy
12. IV. Bourree
13. V. Cinderella at the Palace – VI. Grand Waltz
14. VII. Galop

CD 02
Cinderella Suite No. 3, Op. 109
01. I. Pavane
02. II. Cinderella and the Prince
03. III. Three Oranges
04. IV. Dance of Temptation
05. V. Oriental Dance
06. VI. The Prince Finds Cinderella
07. VII. Slow Waltz
08. VIII. Amoroso

Scythian Suite, Op. 20
09. I. Invocation to Veles and Ala
10. II. The Evil God and Dance of the Pagan Monster
11. III. Night
12. IV. Lolly’s Pursuit of the Evil God and the Sunrise

On the Dnieper Suite, Op. 51bis
13. I. Prelude
14. II. Variation of the First Dancer
15. III. The Betrothal
16. IV. The Quarrel
17. V. Scene
18. VI. Epilogue

Sumptuous and tender-hearted, voluptuous and exquisitely beautiful, Theodore Kuchar and the Ukrainian State Symphony Orchestra’s 1994 recording of the three suites from Prokofiev’s ballet Cinderella could only be improved if there were more of it. And the only way there could be more of it would be if Kuchar and the U.S.S.O. had recorded the whole ballet. But not only are the excerpts extremely well played and supremely persuasively interpreted, they each make sense in context of the suites so that each suite forms a compelling whole rather than a collection of concert hall favorites. Besides, if Kuchar and the U.S.S.O. had recorded the whole Cinderella ballet, there wouldn’t be room on the second disc for what the English so charmingly call fillers. And the fillers are just as fine in their way as the Cinderella suites are in theirs. Kuchar and the U.S.S.O.’s Scythian Suite is the first recording of the work that makes it sound lovely and lyrical, or at least as lyrical and lovely as such an ungainly and awkward work could ever sound. And Kuchar and the U.S.S.O.’s suite from On the Dnieper is far and away the most polished, passionate, and compelling performance of the work ever recorded, which would probably be true even if there were more than two other recordings of the work. Naxos’ sound is superb: clear, warm, and immediate.

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