Rimsky-Korsakov: Sheherazade; Russian Easter Festival Overture; Suites from The Tale of Tsar Saltan, The Snow Maiden & Christmas Eve; May Night Overture; Sadko – Musical Picture; Dubinushka; Flight of the Bumblebee

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4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Rimsky-Korsakov
LABELS: Decca
WORKS: Sheherazade; Russian Easter Festival Overture; Suites from The Tale of Tsar Saltan, The Snow Maiden & Christmas Eve; May Night Overture; Sadko – Musical Picture; Dubinushka; Flight of the Bumblebee
PERFORMER: Suisse Romande Orchestra/Ernest Ansermet
CATALOGUE NO: 443 464-2 DDD (1958-63)
Rimsky-Korsakov’s music is often criticised for a lack of depth, but so entrancing is its surface that it seems ungrateful to ask that there should be anything beneath. Sheherazade has the allure of the East conjured by a vivid 19th-century imagination, while the Russian Easter Festival Overture moves with a monumental vigour. Much of the rest is fairy-tale music – but what fairy tales these are, and what music! Ernest Ansermet was best known for his interpretation of composers influenced by Rimsky (Debussy, Ravel, Stravinsky), yet shows an equal aptitude for their source. Variable sound, but nothing to be ashamed of. George Hall

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