Villa-Lobos’s complete symphonies to be recorded by São Paulo Symphony

Symphonies Nos 6 & 7 first to be released on Naxos

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Brazil’s São Paulo Symphony Orchestra, is recording the complete symphonies of the country’s most famous composer, Heitor Villa-Lobos, under Brazilian conductor Isaac Karabtchevsky. And although there is a Symphony No. 12, the manuscript of the Fifth is lost, making eleven in total.

With the Sixth and Seventh Symphonies already available on disc, the Naxos label is set to release the entire set of six CDs by 2017.

This will be only the second time the complete symphonies will have been recorded. The project also uses new editions of the scores, revised by conductor Karabtchevsky, along with musicians from the orchestra and the orchestra’s archivist.

The São Paulo Symphony is aiming to create an international awareness of Brazil’s rich heritage of composers, including Villa-Lobos, Cláudio Santoro, Camargo Guarnieri and Francisco Braga, as well as contemporary composers such as Gilberto Mendes and Almeida Prado. This summer the orchestra performed at the Proms, under chief conductor Marin Alsop, in a performance which included Villa-Lobos’s Momoprécoce.

Arthur Nestrovski, São Paulo Symphony’s artistic director said: ‘São Paulo Symphony Orchestra’s large-scale recording venture will deservedly bring the Villa-Lobos symphonies to much wider public attention. Put simply, it is spectacular music.’