ALBUM TITLE: Penderecki
WORKS: Sinfoniettas Nos 1 & 2; Oboe Capriccio; Three Pieces in Old Style; Serenade; Intermezzo
PERFORMER: Artur Pachlewski (clarinet), Jean-Louis Capezzali (oboe); Warsaw Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra/Antoni Wit
CATALOGUE NO: 8.572212
Krzysztof Penderecki’s music for string orchestra spans almost his entire output. Though none of the pieces on this disc counts among his major works, it adds up to an attractive portrait of the composer. Some of his most famous scores seem to carry ‘baggage’, while these pieces represent a purer side of his art; all of them are well written and effective. Stylistically, they range from Baroque pastiche in Three Pieces in Old Style, culled from his score for Wojciech Has’s film The Saragossa Manuscript, to the relatively radical idiom of the Intermezzo for 24 Strings. In his early (1964) Capriccio for Oboe and String Orchestra he combines anarchic wit with his distinctive abstract ‘sonorism’.
Both Sinfoniettas are transcriptions of earlier chamber works, and alongside the soulful austerity of the Serenade they inhabit a sound-world suggesting Shostakovich, but without its bleak pessimism. Conductor Antoni Wit sculpts the Warsaw Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra’s playing, and two wind soloists shape every line with purpose. Well produced, this joins the long list of distinguished Warsaw recordings packaged by Naxos.