PAUL JUON (1872-1940): Symphony No. 1 in F Sharp Minor, Op. 10 (Moscow Symphony Orchestra), Suite in Five Movements, Op. 93 (Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana).
Catalogue Number: 02Q001
Reference: CDS 1104-2
Description: Written in 1895, a year after Juon left the Moscow Conservatory and moved to Berlin to study with Woldemar Bargiel, his 40-minute, four-movement first symphony is completely in the "Mighty Five" tradition with a second movement that sounds like Tchaikovsky ballet music and echoes of Borodin and Rimsky-Korsakov elsewhere. The five-movement suite, lasting 23 minutes, is from the other end of Juon's life - the year of his retirement (1934) - and, in its stubborn Romantic style, seems almost to be a finger in the eye of the various schools of modernism then roiling the German capital (a Caucasian Melody for its fourth movement? Holy Ippolitov-Ivanov!). The conductor's bio tells us he is "recording Paul Juon's complete orchestral music" so this is, theoretically at least, not the last disc in this series (there are three violin concertos and at least a dozen other works employing an orchestra with and without soloists). Christof Escher (conductor).