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Ustinov, Doráti, Kertész: Kodály – Orchestral Works, Háry János (FLAC)

Ustinov, Doráti, Kertész: Kodály - Orchestral Works, Háry János (FLAC)
Ustinov, Doráti, Kertész: Kodály – Orchestral Works, Háry János (FLAC)

Composer: Zoltan Kodály
Performer: Peter Ustinov, Erzsébet Komlóssy, László Palócz, Zsolt Bende, Olga Szönyi, Margit László, Lajos Kozma, John Leach, London Symphony Orchestra Chorus, Edinburgh Festival Chorus, Brighton Festival Chorus, Wandsworth School Boys’ Choir
Orchestra: Philharmonia Hungarica, London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Antal Dorati, István Kertész
Number of Discs: 4
Format: FLAC (tracks)
Label: Decca
Catalogue: 4782303
Release: 2010
Size: 1.22 GB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: yes

CD 01
Háry János Suite
01. Prelude; the fairy tale begins
02. Viennese musical clock
03. Song
04. The battle and defeat of Napoleon
05. 5. Intermezzo
06. Entrance of the emperor and his court

Dances of Galanta
07. Lento
08. Allegretto moderato
09. Allegro con moto, grazioso
10. Allegro
11. Allegro vivace

12. The Peacock (Fölszállot a páva), for unaccompanied chorus

Variations on a Hungarian Folk Song for Orchestra, “The Peacock”
13. 1. Moderato (Theme)
14. 2. Con brio (Variations I-VI)
15. 3. Vivo (Variations VII-X)
16. 4. Andante espressivo (Variations XI-XII)
17. 5. Tempo di marcia funebre (Variations XIII-XVI)
18. 6. Finale: Vivace

19. Marosszéki táncok (Dances of Marosszèk) – for orchestra

CD 02
01. Theatre Overture

Concerto for Orchestra
02. Allegro risoluto
03. – Largo
04. Tempo primo

05. Summer Evening

Symphony in C
06. 1. Allegro
07. 2. Andante Moderato
08. 3. Vivo

CD 03
Háry János, Op. 15
01. Introduction & Overture

Act 1
02. The Hussar’s Flute Solo
03. The Old Woman
04. The Jewish Family
05. The Hungarian Girls
06. Örzse’s Song: Sej! verd meg Isten
07. Duet – Red Apple: Piros alma leesett a sárba
08. Uncle Marczi’s Drinking Song: ó, mely sok hal
09. Love Duet: Tiszán innen, Dunán túl
10. Intermezzo

Act 2
11. Cuckoo Song: Ku- ku- kukuskám
12. The Wild Stallion
13. The Viennese Musical Clock
14. Örsze’s Love Song: Hogyan tudtál rószám
15. Chicken Song: Hej két tikom tavali
16. Soldiers’ Chorus: ébresztö Férfikar

Act 3
17. Entry of the French
18. Entry of Napoleon
19. Funeral March
20. Napoleon’s Song: óh te vén sü-lü-lü-lü
21. Gipsy Music
22. Bombazine’s Song: A jó lovas katonátak
23. Song of the Hussar (Toborzó): A jó lovas katonának

CD 04
Háry János, Op. 15
Act 4
01. Duet with Chorus: Gyútottam gyertyát
02. Entry of the Emperor
03. Entry and Song of the Princes: á, bé, cé, dé
04. Exit of the Princes
05. Örsze’s Song: Szegény vagyok
06. Háry’s Song: Felszántom a császár udvarát
07. Finale: Szegény derék, magyar nép

08. Minuetto Serio
09. Ballet Music
10. Hungarian Tunes

Psalmus Hungaricus, Op. 13
11. Mikoron Dávid nagy búsultában
12. Keserusegem (withoutfollowing orchestral passage)
13. Te azért lelkem
14. Igaz vagy Uram

This is a release that’s exceptionally nice to see from the majors, a modestly priced four-disc boxed set of Zoltan Kodály’s orchestral music in the Decca Collector’s edition series. This contains pretty much all of Kodály’s relatively small output for orchestra in addition to including the complete singspiel Hary János, led by conductors who were particularly passionate about Kodály as both of them numbered among his former students Antal Dorati and István Kertész. These are not the most recent recordings of Kodály’s orchestral music, but some of them number among the best; the one conductor who might disagree with this view would be Georg Solti, who also recorded his fair share of Kodály and also for Decca, but his Kodály recordings are already collected in releases geared toward Solti himself. The performance of Hary János is done in English, featuring a cast led by Peter Ustinov; there is no libretto included but if you speak English you won’t need one. All of the performances are spirited, well-drilled, and authoritative, and Kodály’s music for orchestra is really worth the effort; it has the same qualities of quirky folksiness and wry humor that one associates with Bartók’s orchestral music but isn’t as dark or aggressively modern as Bartók. Overall, this is a bargain one could hardly imagine back in the days of analog media, especially if the listener was on the buying end of all the separate London LPs these recordings originally appeared on.

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