Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring; The Firebird Suite; Jeu de cartes; Petrushka; Pulcinella

Our rating 
3.0 out of 5 star rating 3.0

COMPOSERS: Stravinsky
LABELS: DG
WORKS: The Rite of Spring; The Firebird Suite; Jeu de cartes; Petrushka; Pulcinella
PERFORMER: Teresa Berganza (mezzo-soprano), Ryland Davies (tenor), John Shirley-Quirk (bass); LSO/Claudio Abbado
CATALOGUE NO: 453 085-2 ADD/DDD 1975-81
Good value, certainly: two and a half hours of Stravinsky’s ballet music which encompasses his most famous contributions to the genre. The recordings, some of which are over twenty years old, bear up well under DG’s digital processing techniques designed to improve ‘presence and brilliance’. But however useful to bolster the library, this is not vintage Stravinsky. While working on Petrushka, the composer enthused about ‘quick tempos, smells of Russian food, sweat and glistening leather boots’. After the promise of such excitement, Abbado and the LSO seem rather sedate and respectable. Christopher Lambton

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