LALO Symphonie Espagnole Op 21. Namouna Suites 1 & 2

Rising Canadian star plays concertante Lalo

Record and Artist Details

Composer or Director: Edouard(-Victoire-Antoine) Lalo

Genre:

Orchestral

Label: Warner Classics

Media Format: CD or Download

Mastering:

DDD

Catalogue Number: 2564 65711-4

Tracks:

Composition Artist Credit
Symphonie espagnole Carlos Kalmar
Alexandre da Costa
Spanish Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra
Edouard(-Victoire-Antoine) Lalo Composer
Namouna Spanish Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra
Edouard(-Victoire-Antoine) Lalo Composer
Carlos Kalmar
Scherzo Spanish Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra
Carlos Kalmar
Edouard(-Victoire-Antoine) Lalo Composer
Namouna Edouard(-Victoire-Antoine) Lalo Composer
Carlos Kalmar
Spanish Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra

The performance of Symphonie espagnole is billed as departing from the way it’s generally played in the direction of being more serious and dramatic. Alexandre Da Costa points out that three of its five movements are quite sombre in character; by holding back the tempi of the first and third movements in particular, he gives the music more weight and, in the third movement, an impressively stern character. The downside, I suppose, is that the mercurial style of much of the violin-writing, tailored to suit the Symphonie’s dedicatee, Sarasate, is not so much in evidence. Jean-Jacques Kantorow’s fluent, spontaneous performance admirably demonstrates the music’s more sparkling side. And one of Da Costa’s tempi does seem to me distinctly too slow – the middle section of the finale; here the traditional approach, exemplified most beautifully by Jacques Thibaud, allows the music to flow easily while allowing room for touching expression. Da Costa’s is a strong performance, however, and for the most part entirely convincing.

Lalo’s ballet Namouna was not a success at its first performance in 1882 but its music inspired an enthusiastic response from Debussy and formed the basis for several concert works. The two Suites, of which the first is the more substantial, reveal Lalo’s mastery of the orchestra, his rhythmic inventiveness (I urge you to sample the ‘Dance of the Slaves’ – tr 15) and an approach to folkloric ideas that doesn’t seek to prettify them. It’s colourful music, often memorable, and is very well served by these neat, lively performances.

Gramophone Print

  • Print Edition

From £67/year

Subscribe

The Gramophone Digital Club

  • Digital Edition
  • Digital Archive
  • Reviews Database
  • Events & Offers

From £90/year

Subscribe

Gramophone Reviews

  • Reviews Database

From £67/year

Subscribe

Gramophone Digital Edition

  • Digital Edition
  • Digital Archive

From £67/year

Subscribe

If you are a library, university or other organisation that would be interested in an institutional subscription to Gramophone please click here for further information.