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  • The Orchestral Music of Charles Ives
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The Orchestral Music of Charles Ives


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Audio CD, March 11, 1993
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Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Country Band MarchOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 4:15$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Ragtime Dance No 1 (Allegro Moderato)Orchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 3:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Ragtime Dance No 2 (Allegro Moderato)Orchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 2:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Ragtime Dance No 3 (Allegro)Orchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 2:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Ragtime Dance No 4 (Allegro)Orchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 2:54$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Postlude In FOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 5:04$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Calcium Light NightOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 2:28$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Yale-princeton Football GameOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 2:08$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. In The CageOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 1:23$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. In The InnOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 3:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. In The NightOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 2:24$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Largo Cantabile: HymnOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 3:05$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. Three Places In New England: The 'saint-gaudens' In Boston CommonOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 9:35Album Only
listen14. Three Places In New England: Putnam's Camp, Redding, ConnecticutOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 5:48$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. Three Places In New England: The Housatonic At StockbridgeOrchestra New England & James Sinclair (assisted By Kenneth Singleton) 4:09$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Orchestra: Orchestra New England
  • Conductor: James Sinclair
  • Composer: Charles Ives
  • Audio CD (March 11, 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Koch International Classics
  • ASIN: B000001SDH
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #330,981 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Bob Zeidler on January 4, 2003
Format: Audio CD
James Sinclair, for many years, has been associated with the music of Charles Ives, through both the Charles Ives Society and his work with the Ives Library at Yale University. So it should surprise no one (well, no Ivesian) that any performances of the music of Ives that Sinclair commits to disc will be authoritative.

That is certainly the case for this Koch Classics release, in which Sinclair conducts the Orchestra New England, formerly the Yale Theater Orchestra and a group that understands Ives performance practices as well as any; they've got this music in their blood. Better yet, every Ives piece on this CD is either [a] a world premiere or [b] a first recording of a Charles Ives Society critical edition, prepared either by Sinclair or by Kenneth Singleton, Sinclair's colleague.

To me, the most important piece on this CD is the version-for-small-orchestra performance of a true Ives masterpiece, his "Three Places in New England" (also known as his "First Orchestral Set"). Much of Ive's music was never performed within his lifetime, except for his (largely) private benefit, on those occasions when he would pay the musicians of a small "theater orchestra" out of his own pocket, just so he had some idea of what his compositions would sound like. Fortunately, "Three Places in New England" is one work that was. But not in its original form, for large orchestra. As Sinclair makes clear in his booklet notes, Ives - at the request of Nicolas Slonimsky - rewrote the work for small orchestra (Slonimsky's Boston Chamber Players), who premiered the work in this form in 1931.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 26, 2001
Format: Audio CD
For years I'd been intrigued by Ives' music but had been stymied and ultimately put off by the knottier passages (which are many!)...Not for lack of trying or wanting to understand - no Rollo I! - I just didn't know what he expected me to make of all that "good strong dissonance." Whereas, say, Stravinsky's (even Schoenberg's) famously "dissonant" music generally communicated to me pretty readily, Ives' didn't. Was it SUPPOSED to feel inscrutable? Or was there something else to get out of it? How was I supposed to parse it? Well, this recording was a sort of Rosetta stone for me. The early pieces here - the 'Country Band' March and the Ragtime Dances particularly - filled in the gap that I'd felt for so long, the missing link between Ives' music and the popular music which hovers in and around almost everything he wrote. These pieces are, essentially, "take-offs" of standard forms (as per the titles): outlandishly adventurous for their time (and thoroughly amusing) but nonetheless relatively down-to-earth compared to Ives' later works. The Ivesian outbursts and distortions are here more clearly etched against their contexts and are therefore, to my ear, far easier to swallow. (An slight case of mixed metaphor, there, but let's move on.) The recording then offers the chance to see how Ives reworked the same material in more elaborate and obscure ways - "Putnam's Camp" incorporates the 'Country Band' March; "In the Inn" recasts one of the Ragtime Dances. Not to mention that the 4 Ragtime Dances are a fascinating chance to hear Ives work over essentially the same materials in four different ways.Read more ›
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Ypres1918 on July 27, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I was skeptical about this disc. Since I already owned every work on it, in one way or another, I just kept walking past it. But just like the Ives disc "When the Moon...", this disc offers up a glimpse of many of the Ives minitures that are not to be had elsewhere. Done by a chamber orchestra, which vividly brings out all the quirkiness and crazy-quilt Americana that can be buried with larger ensembles, the music here is brisk, profoundly well detailed and irresistable. Sinclair and the New England Orchestra, do justice to every note, making this CD a perfect adjunct to any Ives collection. In fact, I would consider it an essential for any Ives fan. Don't be put off by the cover you see above. This is a serious disc, and well worth the purchase. You can thank me later.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Zachary Young on December 5, 2007
Format: Audio CD
The group on this album is a chamber orchestra, but that should not deter you. In fact, the smaller ensemble seems very appropriate on pieces such as the "Country Band March", in which Ives pays tribute to the enthusiastic amateurism of small-town marching bands. The piece cycles through a number of popular songs, with the occasional over-excited instrumentalist tossing in a favorite tune of his own. It builds to a climax in which the speed and energy of the music outpace the abilities of the ensemble and the whole thing seems on the verge of collapse as it roars toward the finish line. A lone saxophone is caught off-guard by the sudden finale and lets out a few solitary notes before falling into embarrassed silence. This must be a challenging piece to conduct, for the ensemble has to imitate the undisciplined, rambunctious energy of an amateur marching band while faithfully performing a carefully notated score. The ONE pulls it off though, balancing both the comic and abstract elements of the music.

The pieces that follow are mostly sketches of various aspects of Ives' years at Yale. Most entertaining is "Yale-Princeton Football Game", in which the trumpet imitates the zig-zagging 55-yard run by the Yale quarterback while the piccolo trills the referee's whistle. Ives' "Four Ragtime Dances", according to the liner notes, were begun in the late 1890's, when "the national ragtime craze swept the campus". As a college student in 2007, I am highly entertained by the idea of a 'ragtime craze' sweeping the campus.

Ives himself had mixed feelings about his chamber orchestra arrangement of "Three Places in New England", calling the piano a "poor substitute" for the bassoons of the original version. Yet the New Englanders are able to bring a convincingly intimate quality to the piece.
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