Symphony No. 4
By Drakopoulou; Morphoniou; Tassopulou; Athens Chorus; Athens Symphonic Orchestra; Karytinos; Nikolaidi. By Mikis Theodorakis (1925-). Listening CD. Published by Wergo (NX.INT-31362).
Item Number: NX.INT-31362
Based upon works of Aischylos and Euripides, the Symphony No.4 leads to the core of tragedy which is human fate.
Theodorakis' symphonies are characterised neither by pure material avant-gardism, nor by aetheticising dissociation. They are direct testimonies to life, the statements of a man who has never tried to hide his inner and outward participation, a man who admits he has suffered and continues to suffer. And at the same time they are a declaration of opposition to the coldness and lack of sentiment in a method of composition which is based primarily on mathematical calculation and refrains from emotional involvement. Music does not become an occasion through the mind alone, but without the mind music remains incomplete. In the fourth symphony (Symphony of Choirs, 1986/87), Theodorakis interweaves three lines of tradition: the symphonic tradition and the integration of vocals into symphonic works, the tradition of great tragic women figures, which he also took up in his stage works (the operas Medea, Electra and Antigone), and finally the tradition of a Hellenocentric perception of history, whereby this is still no contradiction of the composer's cosmopolitan character. The fourth symphony contains two movements based on texts from Aeschylus (Eumenides) and Euripides (The Phoenician Women). The remastered version of this CD has been recorded live at Athens during the world premiere of the composition. The booklet includes the completely translated libretto, extensive liner notes and some personal remarks of the composer himself.
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