MIKIS THEODORAKIS (b.1925): Suite No. 1 for Piano and Orchestra, Piano Concerto, Symphony No. 2 for Children's Choir, Piano and Orchestra.
Catalogue Number: 02L101
Label: Piano 21
Reference: P21 027A
Description: These live recordings from 1982 fill a big gap in the Theodorakis discography. The suite (1955) is a violently percussive work in which the composer exorcised the demons of torture and imprisonment during the Greek Civil War; it has much of the barbarous quality of some Xenakis orchestral pieces but, despite using some dodecaphonic material, its folk influences keep it out of the avant-garde neighborhood. The concerto, from 1958, written for Eileen Joyce, is a much more lyrical work, one of the first in which Theodorakis used his tetrachord technique, and the folk music echoes are stronger. This is the first release of the hour-long symphony from 1981, one of the early outcries against the pollution and devastaion of the environment (a short poem by the composer is sung by a childrens' choir in the third movement). The reason for its barbaric dance quality is that it's a synthesis of the Suite (above) and the composer's ballet Antigone of 1959 and, often haunted by the ghost of Le sacre, gives it the aspect of an adventure film score. 2 CDs. Cyprien Katsaris (piano), Chorale Enfantine "Princesse Marie-Astrid", Luxembourg Radio and TV Symphony Orchestra; Mikis Theodorakis.