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The Ligeti Project Box set, Import

4.9 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, Import, May 20, 2008
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Editorial Reviews

This 5 CD set features works that enchant both the ear and mind. The box features favorites such as Lontano.
Its refined tonal colors make it one of the most elegant pieces in the modernist canon. The Berlin Philharmonic
performs Apparitions, Ligeti s first success in the West after his escape from Hungary during the 1956 Soviet
invasion. Under its colorful façade, San Francisco Polyphony demonstrates how uncompromising modern music
can be. Concert românesc, harks back to Bartók s transformations of folk material. Rich in color and vitality, its
four movements are full of the dissonances of village bands and melodies rooted in Romanian folk music.
György Sándor Ligeti (1923-2006) was born in Romania to a Hungarian Jewish family and lived in Hungary
before later becoming an Austrian citizen. Many of his works are well known in classical music circles, but to
the general public, he is best known for the various pieces featured in the Stanley Kubrick films 2001: A Spac e
Odyssey, The Shining, and Eyes Wide Shut.
Works in the set include:
Chamber Concerto
Piano Concerto (Pierre-Laurent Aimard)
*Mysteries of the Macabre (Peter Masseurs)
San Francisco Sykmphony
Cello Concerto
*Clocks and Clouds
Violin Concerto
*Sippal, dobbal, nadihegeduvel
*Concert românesc
Hamburg Concerto
Double Concerto
*Adventures, Nouvelles Adventures
Artikulation for Tape
Eight Pieces from Musica ricercata
Sonata for Cello Solo (David Geringas)
Big Turtle Fanfare for the South China Sea
Balada si joc
Regi Magyar tarsas tancok.
*Original world premiere recording

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Melodien (Ligeti Project)
  2. Chamber Concerto : I Corrente (Ligeti Project)
  3. Chamber Concerto : II Calmo, sostenuto (Ligeti Project)
  4. Chamber Concerto : III Movimento preciso e meccanico (Ligeti Project)
  5. Chamber Concerto : IV Presto (Ligeti Project)
  6. Piano Concerto : I Vivace molto ritmico e preciso (Ligeti Project)
  7. Piano Concerto : II Lento e deserto (Ligeti Project)
  8. Piano Concerto : III Vivace cantabile (Ligeti Project)
  9. Piano Concerto : IV Allegro risoluto, molto ritmico (Ligeti Project)
  10. Piano Concerto : V Presto luminoso (Ligeti Project)
  11. Mysteries of the Macabre (Ligeti Project)

Disc: 2

  1. Lontano (Ligeti Project)
  2. Atmosphères (Ligeti Project)
  3. Apparitions : I Lento (Ligeti Project)
  4. Apparitions : II Agitato (Ligeti Project)
  5. San Francisco Polyphony (Ligeti Project)
  6. Romanian Concerto : I Andantino (Ligeti Project)
  7. Romanian Concerto : II Allegro vivace (Ligeti Project)
  8. Romanian Concerto : III Adagio, ma non troppo (Ligeti Project)
  9. Romanian Concerto : IV Molto vivace (Ligeti Project)

Disc: 3

  1. Cello Concerto : I (Ligeti Project)
  2. Cello Concerto : II (Ligeti Project)
  3. Clocks and Clouds (Ligeti Project)
  4. Violin Concerto : I Vivacissimo luminoso (Ligeti Project)
  5. Violin Concerto : II Aria, Hoquetus, Choral (Ligeti Project)
  6. Violin Concerto : III Intermezzo (Ligeti Project)
  7. Violin Concerto : IV Passacaglia (Ligeti Project)
  8. Violin Concerto : V Appassionato - Agitato molto (Ligeti Project)
  9. With Pipes, Drums, Fiddles : I Fabula (Ligeti Project)
  10. With Pipes, Drums, Fiddles : II Táncdal (Ligeti Project)
  11. With Pipes, Drums, Fiddles : III Kínai templom (Ligeti Project)
  12. With Pipes, Drums, Fiddles : IV Kuli (Ligeti Project)
  13. With Pipes, Drums, Fiddles : V Alma álma (Ligeti Project)
  14. With Pipes, Drums, Fiddles : VI Keserédes (Ligeti Project)
  15. With Pipes, Drums, Fiddles : VII Szajko (Ligeti Project)

Disc: 4

  1. Hamburg Concerto : I Praeludium (Ligeti Project)
  2. Hamburg Concerto : II Signale, Tanz, Choral (Ligeti Project)
  3. Hamburg Concerto : III Aria, Aksak, Hoketus (Ligeti Project)
  4. Hamburg Concerto : IV Solo, Intermezzo, Mixtur, Kanon (Ligeti Project)
  5. Hamburg Concerto : V Spectra (Ligeti Project)
  6. Hamburg Concerto : VI Capriccio (Ligeti Project)
  7. Hamburg Concerto : VII Hymnus (Ligeti Project)
  8. Double Concerto : I Calmo, con tenerezza (Ligeti Project)
  9. Double Concerto : II Allegro corrente (Ligeti Project)
  10. Ramifications (Ligeti Project)
  11. Requiem : I Introitus (Ligeti Project)
  12. Requiem : II Kyrie (Ligeti Project)
  13. Requiem : III De die judicii sequentia (Ligeti Project)
  14. Requiem : IV Lacrimosa (Ligeti Project)

Disc: 5

  1. Aventures (Ligeti Project)
  2. Nouvelles Aventures I (Ligeti Project)
  3. Nouvelles Aventures II (Ligeti Project)
  4. Articulation for Tape (Ligeti Project)
  5. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - I. Sostenuto - Misurato - Prestissimo (Max Bonnay)
  6. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - III. Allegro con spirito (Max Bonnay)
  7. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - IV. Tempo de Valse (poco vivace - ` l'orgu (Max Bonnay)
  8. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - VII. Con moto, giusto - Cantabile, molto l (Max Bonnay)
  9. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - VIII. Vivace. Energico (Max Bonnay)
  10. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - IX. (Béla Bartók in memoriam) Adago. Mesto (Max Bonnay)
  11. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - X. Vivace. Capriccioso (Max Bonnay)
  12. Ligeti : 8 Pieces from "Musica ricercata" for Accordeon - XI. (Omaggio a Girolamo Frescobaldi) Andan (Max Bonnay)
  13. Cello Sonata : I Dialogo (Ligeti Project)
  14. Cello Sonata : II Capriccio (Ligeti Project)
  15. The Big Turtle Fanfare from the South China Sea (Ligeti Project)
  16. Ballad and Dance : I Andantino (Ligeti Project)
  17. Ballad and Dance : II Allegri vivace (Ligeti Project)
  18. Old Hungarian Ballroom Dances (Ligeti Project)

Product Details

  • Conductor: Various
  • Composer: Various
  • Audio CD (May 20, 2008)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 5
  • Format: Box set, Import
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Teldec Classics
  • ASIN: B0016A8E1K
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #157,997 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

By Michael Schell on December 7, 2009
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Like Beethoven and Stravinsky, Ligeti's output divides rather neatly into three distinct style periods. First are the early works from Ligeti's pre-flight years. These are a combination of juvenilia, Eastern European folklorist works, pieces inhabiting a Bartókian sound world, and the occasional bit of internationalist or modernist experimentation that hints at what was to come. Most of these works are of minor importance beyond the world of Ligeti immersion. But a handful, such as the First String Quartet, and a few of the movements from Musica Ricercata, are worthy of his more mature works.

The heart of Ligeti's output, and the basis for the consensus that places him among postmodernism's greatest composers, is the series of masterworks written during his middle period which lasted from roughly 1957 (after his escape from Hungary) to 1977 (marked by the completion of his opera Le Grand Macabre). The "sound surface" compositions from the period, including Atmosphères, the Requiem, Lux Aeterna and much of the Second String Quartet, fall into a genre of acoustic music that was not unique to Ligeti -- it's also associated with Penderecki and Xenakis, and more peripherally with composers like Lutoslawski -- but Ligeti was arguably the greatest of the lot. Central to this musical language is the elevation of timbre as the most important musical parameter, supplanting the traditional pitch-priority that had been dominant in Western art music since its inception.
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This box should probably be your first choice if you want to get acquainted with the works of Ligeti. The recordings in this box are overseen by Ligeti himself, and they were supposed to be definitive recordings that after his death could show conductors how his music was supposed to be played. As detailed in Richard Steinitz' Ligeti biography, it took two record companies to bring us the complete authoritative works of Ligeti on CD. Sony started a series of cd's called "The Ligeti Edition", but they had to concentrate on the smaller works for solo instruments and chamber ensembles - they simply weren't able to produce the biggest works for choir and orchestra to the composers satisfaction. The project was aborted after 7 cd's, and later continued by Teldec. This box contains all Teldec's 5 cd's of the recordings of the really big works. And as I started out saying, it's recommended as the first Ligeti item to buy.
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The skinny: Some of us paid significant sums of money to get these CDs when they were individually wrapped. You can get them now for much less, and in one convenient package. What you won't get are the equally fine 7 CDs that Sony produced under a similar concept (Ligeti, one CD at a time) before they abandoned their work, nor will you get the opera Le Grand Macabre (still available here and there on the Wergo label).

Not to worry, the present 5-CD set is chock full of remarkable music (a great amount available nowhere else, or in not-as-fine performances). Ligeti was a true original. When he moved from one kind of music to another, he adapted his vocabulary to suit the circumstances, and that means almost always that you're in for a big surprise. It's novelty, sure, but novelty with a purpose: Not just to play the enfant terrible, the naughty boy, but with tangible goals of making valid musical statements. Many other Eastern European avant-gardists could only wish they were half as talented in that regard. This is music that opens your eyes. Wide.
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THE LIGETI PROJECT is the second of two efforts -- the first being Sony's "Gyorgy Ligeti Edition" -- to offer Gyorgy Ligeti's complete works in performances approved by the composer himself. While Sony's series mainly recorded Ligeti's chamber output, this successor series on Warner Classics was able to record his orchestral works. THE LIGETI PROJECT originally encompassed five full-priced discs released between 2001 and 2004. Happily, Warner Classics later packaged all these together in this box set, and you can enjoy many of Ligeti's key pieces at an economical price. The performers here are top-class and Ligeti's own hand-picked, with among others pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard continuing on from the Sony series, the Schoenberg Ensemble cond. Reinbert de Leeuw on the pieces for smaller forces, and the Berlin Philharmonic cond. Jonathan Nott on the large-scale works.

Excepting some early pieces written before the composer escaped from Communist Hungary, Ligeti's music generally falls into two periods. The first lasted from the late 1950s to the mid-1970s and is the era of "micropolyphony", an orchestral texture so dense that individual lines can scarcely be made out. From this period we have "Apparitions", "Atmospheres", "Adventures/Nouvelles Adventures", the Requiem, "Lontano", the Chamber, Cello and Double Concertos, "Ramifications", "Melodien", "Clocks and Clouds" and "San Francisco Polyphony". This is the spooky music featured in Kubrick's film 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY.

Ligeti's second stylistic period came after a long hiatus at the end of the 1970s. Now he was mainly concerned with rhythm, including the remarkable music of the African Pygmies and of jazz innovators and with the unusual tunings one finds in Eastern European folk music, ocarinas and mountain horns.
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