ESSENTIAL RECORDINGS
ALEXANDER GLAZUNOV - THE SEASONS


ALEXANDER GLAZUNOV - THE SEASONS - NEEME JÄRVI (Conductor) - SCOTTISH NATIONAL ORCHESTRA - Chandos 8596

This charming ballet score is an excellent introduction to this russian composer's music. He was a pupil of Rimsky-Korsakov, so you know that his orchestration will be colorful, and his style is very much from the russian tradition of Tchaikovsky. Each season is divided into scenes who's dancing characters represent frost, ice and snow for winter, Zephyr, birds and flowers for spring, cornflowers, poppies and fauns for summer and falling leaves and stars glittering in the heavens for autumn, so the ballet music is very colorful and descriptive.

The most famous scene of the ballet is the "Petit Adagio" of autumn, where Glazunov's talent for depicting a mood shines through. The music is very melancholic, representing the end of the year and life's decline, but at the same time, you can feel nature at it's most beautiful and radiant before the long winter slumber. A stroke of genius.

The recorded sound here, from the quietest tinkling of little bells to full orchestral tuttis is excellent.

Jean-Yves Duperron