DMITRI KABALEVSKY (1904-1987): Symphonies No. 1 in C Sharp Minor, Op. 18, No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 19, No. 3 in B Flat for Orchestra and Mixed Chorus "Requiem for Lenin", Op. 22 and No. 4 in C, Op. 54.

Catalogue Number: 10K008

Label: CPO

Reference: 999 833

Format: CD

Price: $31.98

Description: Dating from 1932, Kabalevsky's first symphony is a two-movement work celebrating the 15th anniversary of the October Revolution which depicts the downtrodden Russian people in its anguished, brooding first movement and the revolutionaries in its complex, agitated and jaunty finale. From 1934, the second symphony has no program but, as with all of the composer's orchestral works, is direct, diatonic, rooted in Russian folk music, showing wit, humor and unpredictability. This must be the first CD recording of the Third, a short (19 min.), two-movement piece written for the tenth anniversary of Lenin's death and an absolutely perfect example of the toadying required of Soviet composers by the beginning of 1934. Its hero-worship of Lenin is a grotesque parody of a liturgical work and great fun for collectors of such Soviet music. The massive, 41-minute Fourth stands apart from the others both in length and in that it's music comes from a four-act opera of 1950, The Family of Taras. The symphony was premiered in 1956 (a live performance by Mitropoulos in New York was once available on CD) and is, of course, Soviet Realism, but brilliantly orchestrated in the tradition of Tchaikovsky and Rimsky-Korsakov and the one work with which Kabalevsky fits into the types of music written by such peers as Gliere, Myaskovsky and Vainberg. 2 CDs. Hungarian Radio Choir, North German Radio Choir and Philharmonic; Eiji Oue.

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