BRITTEN War Requiem, Spring Symphony, The Young Person`s Guide to the Orchestra. Czech Philharmonic Orchestra / Karel Ancerl. Supraphon 2cds

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Britten War Requiem Czech Philharmonic Orchestra Karel Ancerl Supraphon 2Cds

  • Britten War Requiem Czech Philharmonic Orchestra Karel Ancerl Supraphon 2Cds
  • Britten War Requiem Czech Philharmonic Orchestra Karel Ancerl Supraphon 2Cds

BENJAMIN BRITTEN (1913-1976)

  • War Requiem, Op. 66 (1961-62)* 79:27
  • The Young Person´s Guide to the Orchestra, Op. 34 (1946)
  • Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Purcell
  • Spring Symphony, Op. 44 (1948-49) (in Czech)

Naděžda Kniplová – soprano
Gerald English – tenor
John Cameron – baritone (War Requiem)
Milada Šubrtová – soprano
Věra Soukupová – alto
Beno Blachut – tenor (Spring Symphony)
Prague Philharmonic Choir
Kühn Children's Chorus
Czech Philharmonic Orchestra
Karel Ančerl

Recorded at the Dvořák Hall of the Rudolfinum, Prague, on January 13, 1966 (CD1), May 3, 1958 (CD2/1) and January 17, 1964 (CD2/2-13).

Benjamin Britten's music formed one of the pillars of the Czech Philharmonic's concert programmes under its chief conductor Karel Ančerl. The famous Variations on a Theme of Purcell was in all likelihood the most frequently performed work (in 1962 also in England), and this CD contains the previously unreleased 1958 recording in the original version without narration. The enchanting and joyous Spring Symphony, commissioned by Serge Koussevitzky, was presented in Czech in Prague by Ančerl, the Czech Philharmonic and the finest soloists of the time. Forming a stark contrast to these two works is the War Requiem, a grand piece commemorating the victims of the most gruesome armed conflict in human history. Britten dedicated it to the memory of four friends of his who died in WWII while serving in the British navy or army. The work's Czech premiere, with the participation of superlative foreign soloists (Gerald English, John Cameron), took place less than four years after its world premiere. So enthused was he by the work that in November 1969, following his emigration to Canada, Ančerl included the War Requiem in one of his first concerts in Toronto. The conductor's personal profound experience of the senseless barbarity of the war imbued his conception of the work with a chilling authenticity. Both of the two previously unreleased concert recordings were made by the former Czechoslovak Radio.

Britten conducted by Karel Ančerl – previously unreleased unique recordings from the Prague Radio archives.

Supraphon 2cds SU41352

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