Khachaturian: Suites & Dances

Khachaturian: Suites & Dances

by Loris Tjeknavorian

CD

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Overview

This disc collects pieces by Aram Khachaturian that were probably played more often a quarter century ago than today, even though national musics of the twentieth century have been on the rise. The program shows both virtues and limitations of Khachaturian's music. The virtues are simple pleasures: much of the music shows the combination of adept orchestration and motor rhythms that has given Khachaturian his certified hits, and the musicians of the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra admirably get into the swing of things. A march as straightforward as "Forward to Victory," from the composer's score for a film potboiler called The Battle of Stalingrad, remains irresistible. The limitations revolve around the fact that Khachaturian, although he occasionally used folk tunes in his works, essentially treated his own Central Asian musical cultures as sources of exotica -- a tendency shared in his time by Communist Soviet composers and light classical composers of the capitalist West. Consider the rarely heard suite from Khachaturian's incidental music for a play called The Valencian Widow; save for a few percussion inflections it sounds quite a bit like Khachaturian's program music set in Central Asia. The final dance is not a Spanish dance but a somewhat reworked can-can. All of which is not to say that it's not as much fun as the composer's more familiar suites, nor that aficionados of nationalist orchestral music won't enjoy this nicely remastered disc.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/05/2008
Label: Alto
UPC: 0894640001196
catalogNumber: 1019
Rank: 87917

Tracks

  1. Masquerada, suite from the incidental music for orchestra (or piano)
  2. The Valencian Widow, incidental music & suite
  3. Dance Suite for orchestra: Caucasian Dance
  4. Dance Suite for orchestra: Uzbek Dance
  5. The Battle of Stalingrad, suite from the film score (from the film by Vladimir Petrov): City on the Volga
  6. The Battle of Stalingrad, suite from the film score (from the film by Vladimir Petrov): Invasion
  7. The Battle of Stalingrad, suite from the film score (from the film by Vladimir Petrov): Stalingrad on Fire
  8. The Battle of Stalingrad, suite from the film score (from the film by Vladimir Petrov): Battle for the Motherland
  9. The Battle of Stalingrad, suite from the film score (from the film by Vladimir Petrov): Forward into Victory
  10. The Battle of Stalingrad, suite from the film score (from the film by Vladimir Petrov): There is a Crag on the Volga

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