Kodaly: Háry János; Variations on a Hungarian Folksong ‘The Peacock’; Psalmus hungaricus

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4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Kodaly
LABELS: Decca
WORKS: Háry János; Variations on a Hungarian Folksong ‘The Peacock’; Psalmus hungaricus
PERFORMER: Peter Ustinov, György Melis, Lajos Kozma, etc; Edinburgh Festival Chorus, Brighton Festival Chorus, Wandsworth School Boys’ Choir, LSO & Chorus/István Kertész
CATALOGUE NO: 443 488-2 ADD (1969/71)
It’s marvellous to have Kertész’s brilliantly idiomatic performances of Kodály’s best-known works, sounding excellent even after a quarter of a century. Peter Ustinov’s narration of Háry János threads the whole together, but his cast of Eastern European accents becomes rather relentless on repeated hearings – sadly, the tracking doesn’t allow him to be edited out. Young listeners will love this approach, those primarily after the music may find it all a touch enervating. Jan Smaczny

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