WORKS: Sinfonietta; Taras Bulba; Four Operatic Preludes
PERFORMER: Pro Arte Orchestra/Charles Mackerras; Philharmonia Orchestra/Simon Rattle
CATALOGUE NO: HMV 5 68338 2 ADD/DDD (available HMV shops only) (1960/83)
The addition of four opera preludes to the familiar coupling of Janácek’s Sinfonietta and Taras Bulba is a nice touch. Mackerras gives them blistering performances, which stand up well alongside Rattle’s highly charged reading of Taras. His vintage recording of the Sinfonietta, a touch indulgent and with rather acid sound, is not in the same league, but does not seriously detract from an otherwise tempting issue.