ROZSA Orchestral Works Vol. 3 Violin Concerto, Concerto for String Orchestra, Kaleidoscope, Theme, Variations and Finale. Jennifer Pike, BBC Philharmonic / Rumon Gamba. Chandos

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Rozsa Orchestral Works Vol 3 Bbc Philharmonic Rumon Gamba Chandos

  • Rozsa Orchestral Works Vol 3 Bbc Philharmonic Rumon Gamba Chandos
  • Rozsa Orchestral Works Vol 3 Bbc Philharmonic Rumon Gamba Chandos

MIKLÓS RÓZSA (1907-1995)

Orchestral Works, Volume 3

Theme, Variations and Finale, Op. 13

Concerto for String Orchestra, Op. 17

Kaleidoscope, Op. 19a

Violin Concerto, Op. 24

Jennifer Pike (violin)

BBC Philharmonic / Rumon Gamba

This is Volume 3 in our series of orchestral works by Miklós Rózsa. The composer’s unique musical voice was highly influenced by his Hungarian roots, and his works often dazzle with virtuosity. The BBC Philharmonic and Rumon Gamba pull out all the stops to play these works with the precision and passion they require. Jennifer Pike, an exclusive Chandos artist, joins them in the Violin Concerto.

The Theme, Variations and Finale was completed in Paris during 1933. The initial idea, a melancholy oboe theme, came to Rózsa as he was leaving Budapest to settle in Paris. He had made his farewells to his family – it was the last time he would ever see his father – and the somber occasion no doubt left its mark on this work. Premiered by Charles Munch in Duisburg in 1934, the work proved so successful that it was quickly taken up by Bruno Walter, Eugene Ormandy, and Leonard Bernstein.

The Concerto for String Orchestra was composed in New York during 1943. Rózsa had just completed his score for Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book and felt the need to write something non-cinematic; this Concerto was the result. The underlying theme is muscular, brutal, and aggressive: no doubt a reflection of a world in the midst of war.

Kaleidoscope was written in 1946 to celebrate the births of his children, Juliet (b.1945) and Nicholas (b.1946). The work consists of six pieces, originally composed for solo piano, but later arranged for small orchestra. After the opening ‘March’ in military style, ‘Zingara’ suggests a more exotic atmosphere. ‘Musette’ evokes the drone of bagpipes, while the ‘Berceuse’ is a touching lullaby, in turn contrasting starkly with ‘Chinese Carillion’, a glittering evocation of the Orient. The rhythmically driven ‘Burlesque’ brings the work to an exuberant conclusion.

Every year Rózsa would take a three-month holiday from the film studios in order to compose music for the concert hall. The Violin Concerto was written in 1953, during one such break, for the violinist Jascha Heifetz, who collaborated with the composer on details of it. About seventeen years later, Rózsa adapted the work for his soundtrack to the film The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes.

Chandos Records CHAN10738

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