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Rimsky-Korsakov was a consummate tunesmith, and this album showcases his talent with a generous (67 minute) selection of pieces, some well known and some less so. Many people will buy the album for the wonderful Capriccio Espagnol, but the other works are all worth hearing too. I especially enjoyed the substantial Russia Easter Overturem which at 15 minutes is the second longest track after Capriccio Espagnol.
Gerard Schwartz and the Seattle Symphony Orchestra seem to have a natural affinity for this music. And the recording quality is well up to the expected Naxos standard. All in all, a highly recommended album, even if you have other versions of some of the pieces.
Naxos is a label that seldom, if ever fails to deliver and it certainly does with Gerard Schwarz and the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and their tremendous delivery of Rimsky-Korsakov’s always popular Capriccio Espagnol but there are some of Rimsky’s other works, mainly overtures on this disk, some of which are seldom heard. I thought The Tsar’s Bride was terrific, tuneful and threatening, heralding the poisonings and stabbings of most of the cast – May Night, The Maid of Pskov and the ever popular Russian Easter overture are a delight, as well. An excellent recording.
I bought this cd just to hear the Capriccio Espagnol and i was rewarded well with music of the highest order. The whole cd is a credit to conductor and orchestra who all play and perform Rimskys music so at ease yet full of life. The Capriccio Espagnol is packed with melodies that are colourful, delightful and forwardly fresh. The other music on this disc is worth its place here and it rewards you with repeated plays. An excellent recording and a top performance by a 1st rate orchestra and conductor.
Schwarz, who with the Seattle Orchestra, has done so much for American music, turns his hand here to the Russian repertoire with great success. The Capriccio is fab, as are the Russian Easter and May Night Overtures. The other pieces are perhaps a bit less engaging, but it's all very committed and beautifully played and will delight anyone who hasn't ventured further than Scheherazade.