Franck, Messiaen, Ravel, Chopin & Duparc

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COMPOSERS: Chopin & Duparc,Franck,Messiaen,Ravel
LABELS: Cala Artists
ALBUM TITLE: Collection: Stokowski Ð a French Concert
WORKS: Symphony in D minor; L’ascension
PERFORMER: Hilversum Radio PO, LSO/Leopold Stokowski
CATALOGUE NO: CACD 0525 ADD Reissue (1970, 1972)
That anyone can conduct in their late eighties is remarkable, that the results should have the incisive vitality of these recordings is truly amazing. Stokowski’s exuberant jaunt through Franck’s Symphony, delighting en route in the delicacy of the slow movement, rivals Beecham’s classic account. Stokowski made the first recording of L’Ascension in 1947, an account that is even faster than this spritely re-recording, but although the extremities of Messiaen’s slower tempi may not be realized, there is much to admire in this distinctly Romantic reading. The three miniatures are also welcome, particularly Stokowski’s haunting orchestration of Chopin’s A minor Mazurka. Christopher Dingle