The São Paulo Symphony Orchestra has launched a new project to record all 11 symphonies by Villa-Lobos for Naxos under conductor Isaac Karabtchevsky. Due for completion in 2017, the series will use entirely new editions of the scores, which have been re-edited jointly by Karabtchevsky, the orchestra’s archivist and São Paulo orchestral musicians. The first release, featuring Symphonies Nos 6 and 7, is available now.
As Brazil’s leading orchestra, the São Paulo Symphony has made a commitment to bring wider recognition to the country’s most important composer and has already recorded Villa Lobos’s famous Bachianas Brasileiras and Choros for Bis. Although Villa-Lobos wrote a Symphony No 12, the manuscript for the Fifth Symphony has been lost, making a total of 11 symphonic works.
The orchestra has also pledged to raise the profile of fellow Brazilian composers including Camargo Guarnieri, Cláudio Santoro and Francisco Braga through recordings, and to commission at least six native works every year. In 2012, the orchestra has programmed 30 compositions by 13 different Brazilian composers.
‘São Paulo Symphony Orchestra’s large-scale recording venture will deservedly bring the Villa-Lobos Symphonies to much wider public attention,’ said artistic director Arthur Nestrovski. ‘Put simply, it is spectacular music.’