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Britannia [Hybrid SACD - DSD]

Benjamin Britten , Peter Maxwell Davies , Edward Elgar , James MacMillan , Mark-Anthony Turnage , Donald Runnicles , Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Details

  • Orchestra: Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Donald Runnicles
  • Composer: Benjamin Britten, Peter Maxwell Davies, Edward Elgar, James MacMillan, Mark-Anthony Turnage
  • Audio CD (October 23, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Hybrid SACD - DSD
  • Label: Telarc
  • ASIN: B000W1V8EE
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #221,082 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Pomp and Circumstance March No.4, for orchestra in G major, Op. 39/4
2. An Orkney Wedding, with Sunrise, for orchestra, J. 205
3. Three Screaming Popes for large orchestra (After Francis Bacon)
4. Britannia, for orchestra
5. Sinfonia da Requiem, for orchestra, Op. 20: Lacrymosa
6. Sinfonia da Requiem, for orchestra, Op. 20: Dies irae
7. Sinfonia da Requiem, for orchestra, Op. 20: Requiem aeternam
8. Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1, for orchestra in D major, Op. 39/1

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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hail Britannia! September 23, 2011
Donald Runnicles is a fine Scottish Conductor who has graced the opera pit in the San Francisco Opera for the past decade and has also made significant posts with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and other European Orchestras as well as being in charge of summer festivals. He honors the music of British composers in a program that contains both well known and rarely heard works. The recording would likely not work well as a program in a symphony hall concert but on CD it works very well indeed.

Runnicles both opens and closes this recording with two of Sir Edward Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance marches (Nos. 1 and 4) and conducts them with all the elegance and dignity befitting a royal coronation or wedding. He then delivers the Sir Peter Maxwell Davies' (born 1934) An Orkney Wedding with Sunrise, notable for being one of the few pieces in classical repertoire to feature a bagpipe solo, and depicting a riotous post wedding celebration in Orkney, where the composer lived. It is a light, airborne mood that is played with great finesse by the orchestra.

Next is the young composer Mark-Anthony Turnage (born 1960) whose "Three Screaming Popes' Turnage describes as follows: 'In 1985 I went to see a stunning exhibition of Francis Bacon's paintings at the Tate Gallery. I was overwhelmed, in the best way. I was particularly taken with the three Pope paintings, which although they were not a set, were hung side by side at the Tate. These paintings are based on Pope Innocent X by Velasquez, and my initial idea was to write a piece which distorted a set of Spanish dances as Bacon had distorted and restated the Velasquez.
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