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Penderecki: Fonogrammi / Horn Concerto / Partita / Awakening

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 26, 2012
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Each of these six orchestral works bears the imprint of Penderecki's greatness as a composer. Fonogrammi alternates piquant sonorities, pulsating vehemence and moments of great intimacy. Intensity accompanied by neo-Romantic elements can be heard in The Awakening of Jacob whilst Anaklasis is a stunning example of juxtaposed, multiple sound patterns. De natura sonoris I explores more improvisational, jazz-influenced areas, as does the richly orchestrated Partita. The Horn Concerto, composed in 2008, offers an evocative landscape, glacial, powerful, yet wistful.


2013 GRAMMY Award winner: Best Classical Compendium
Antoni Wit, conductor; Aleksandra Nagórko & Andrzej Sasin, producers --National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, 2013

This disc is an essential addition to any Penderecki collection and is an important listening experience to get to know more about one of this past century's most important composers. The Warsaw Philharmonic under conductor Antoni Wit gives strong, dedicated performances throughout. --Audiophile Audition

Antoni Wit and the musicians of the Warsaw Philharmonic continue to do yeoman service to Penderecki with this volume spanning the composer's career with the greater emphasis placed on his earlier works. If you are new to Penderecki's music, the Horn Concerto is as good a place to start as any. Jennifer Montone's performance is excellent. . . both as to performance and recording, the works presented here sound wonderful. --MusicWeb International, Leslie Wright
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Product Details

  • Conductor: Wit
  • Composer: Penderecki
  • Audio CD (June 26, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Naxos
  • ASIN: B007WB5D0C
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #216,501 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By Mark Hancock on August 19, 2013
Format: Audio CD
This CD has several things going for it. One thing is that you get a variety of Penderecki's orchestral works, including early and well known works like De natura sonoris I (Love the percussion!), so you get to sample avant garde Penderecki and say you've done it. Another thing is that the pieces are ably performed by the Warsaw Philharmonic, conducted by Antoni Wit, in Warsaw, no less. But the third, most compelling, reason to buy this CD is the fact that it contains one of the neatest horn concertos in the modern repertoire! Styled "Winterreise," it is evocative of both the season for which it is named and of the loneliness of a traveler out in the literal and figurative cold. If your taste tends to the romantic, you'll love this piece. Think Wagner or Bruckner writing in the 21st century! In my view, this single (though 18+ minutes long), evocative piece alone justifies the purchase of this CD. It's awesome. Jennifer Montone, the horn player, does a great job.
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This is just one of the many Naxos CD's that contain Penderecki's most famous (and sometimes most neglected) classical pieces. If you know Penderecki, then you know that some of his music can be quite terrifying at times. Polymorphia, Utrenja, Polish Requiem, and the First Symphony are a major part of the modern classical repertoire. Some are even used for specific horror movies (think "All Work and No Play"). In my honest opinion, it can be a little tiresome when at least half of Penderecki's compositions sound pretty much the same. But then again, his music still forces goose bumps to form anywhere on the skin.

On this CD, there are six orchestral works: Fonogrammi, De Natura Sonoris, Partita, Anaklasis, The Awakening of Jacob, and Horn Concerto. All of these are less than twenty minutes long, and two are barely seven minutes in length. Even if these are moderately short compositions, they are still considered a spine-tingling experience. The screeching strings, the blaring brass, the wild percussion, and the eerie woodwinds are classic demonstrations of Penderecki's extreme use of orchestral color.

As usual, Antoni Wit conducts with clear passion, while the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra does not disappoint in any way. The soloists do a fine job with the complex material.

Official Grade: 8.7 out of 10
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