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Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 24, No. 15. 1961.



The Record Society

This month, the Record Society introduces another three finely programmed discs, all as varied and diverse in topic and form as one could wish.

Ralph Kirkpatrick gives a "rapid survey of keyboard music from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries" on a record, that is brilliantly played and recorded. Kirkpatrick is warm and expressive — in all pieces, ranging from William Byrd to Domenico Scarlatti, he displays a sensitivity of touch, found too rarely in harpsichordists today.

Mahler's 1st Symphony in D Major ("Titan") is given the full treatment by William Steinberg and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. A thoroughly accurate account of the symphony; in places though somewhat woodily recorded. The Blues, is the title given to a disc comprising numbers played by a handful of "West-Coast" musicians, including Bud Shank, John Lewis, Chico Hamilton, and others. The recording is excellent all instruments and solos coming through crystal clear. As with the other two albums, this is fully annotated and illustrated.

Carlo Maria Giulini.

Carlo Maria Giulini.

Tchaikovsky. Symphony No. 2 in O Minor. "Little Russian."

Mussorgsky. A Night on the Bare Mountain. Philharmonic Orch.

Carlo Maria Giulini. World Record Club. T2 119 mono and stereo.

These are both excellent performances. The Tchaikovsky is given a superlative reading; Giulini takes the whole at a fairly brisk pace; phrasing with care, leashing sound of the pianissimos, freeing it at the climaxes. The orchestra plays wonderfully in both numbers. The recording is good, but slightly brittle towards the end of side 2.

Beat Girl. Music from the film. John Barry and His Orchestra. Adam Faith. The John Barry Seven. Shirley Ann Field. Col-Columbia 33Msx 1225 Mono.

I don't think the movie has reached this country yet; but if the music on this disc is indicative of its content — it won't be much chop. There are one or two catchy tunes; the recording is clear and vibrant.

A Concert Gala. Music by Elgar, Katchaturian, Wagner, Debussy, etc. Capitol Symphony Orch. Carmen Dragon. Capitol P 8511 Mono.

Another of those popular Capital/Dragon records, consisting of the lighter classics and arrangements. treated to some hot-revivalling. The sound is generous and clear on the whole; I would question one or two of the "arrangements" — but on this sort of disc who cares greatly, what happens? If this stuff is up your alley, then here is a worthwhile record.


Stravinsky. Le Sacre du Printemps. L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. Ernest Ansermet. Decca Lxtm 5538 Mono.

Ansermet gives a fiery but well controlled performance of Stravinsky's intricately involved Rite of Spring. His is both a definite (as regards the composer's original scoring) and a warmly moving recording. In its day, Ansermet's earlier performance (1951) was a finely tempered piece of craftsmanship. Now, with the advantage of modern recording to enlighten us further, Ansermet seems to excel in all the colourful shadings and nuances inherent in the work — it is all so vitally alive! A recommended disc, all round.

Ernest Ansermet.

Ernest Ansermet.