1 Sep 2008
Composer: Debussy, Schoenberg, Stravinsky
Other participants: Pierre Boulez, New Philharmonia Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra
“Classic Archive” is a new series featuring music DVDs of legendary artists, thus offering – at a sensational mid-range price - a unique view of our classical music heritage. The recordings were retrieved from several television archives in Europe and were lovingly restored, using the finest state-of-the-art technology. On this DVD, home viewers encounter Pierre Boulez, one of the most intriguing musical personalities of our times. Boulez, born in 1925, is a leading composer and an influential conductor of contemporary music. His groundbreaking Debussy interpretations Nocturnes and Images freed Debussy from cliché. Boulez, with his astonishingly precise ear for pitch and sonority, appears to understand the language of his great predecessor like no other. Here we see Boulez conducting the three pieces in recordings made in 1968 and 1974. His legendary sense of rhythm comes into play in Stravinsky’s innovative Rite of Spring (1913), recorded by the BBC in 1997 and he is the ideal interpreter for Schoenberg’s charming Accompaniment to a Cinematographic Scene (1930). Boulez conducts with precision and a deep understanding of the soundscapes of each composer: he “thinks music” and has confirmed himself as the authority on 20th century music. The DVD also includes additional film footage of Boulez while conducting Images and rehearsing Debussy’s Fêtes Jeux. This compilation makes for a wonderful homage to an important figure of 20th century music and includes first time DVD releases of Boulez’ most famous Debussy interpretations - a must-have!
Debussy: Nocturnes: Fêtes Jeux - Poème dansé, Images for Orchestra; Schönberg: Accompaniment to a Cinematographic Scene, Op.34; Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring.