Roussel: Bacchus et Ariane; Le festin de l’araignée

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4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Roussel
LABELS: EMI L’Esprit Franais
WORKS: Bacchus et Ariane; Le festin de l’araignée
PERFORMER: Orchestre National de France/ Georges Prêtre
CATALOGUE NO: CDM 7 64690 2 DDD (1986)
This is an obvious, but none the less welcome, coupling of Roussel’s best known ballets, with their pseudo-classical Gallic sensibility. The Spider’s Banquet is one of the few convincing examples of insect music, written, as Norman Demuth put it, ‘with the point of a needle’. Bacchus is more substantial and uses a larger orchestra to more dramatic effect. There are rough edges in these performances, but they are attractive enough and the spirit is right. Wadham Sutton

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