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Turangalila Symphony

4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Composer: Messiaen
  • Audio CD (June 1 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Ncl
  • ASIN: B00004WJVS
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #79,522 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Disc: 1
1. Turanglila-Symphonie: I. Introduction
2. Turanglila-Symphonie: II. Chant d'amour 1
3. Turanglila-Symphonie: III. Turangalila 1
4. Turanglila-Symphonie: IV Chant d'amour 2
5. Turanglila-Symphonie: V. Joie du sang des etoiles
6. Turanglila-Symphonie: VI. Jardin du sommeil
7. Turanglila-Symphonie: VII. Turangalila 2
Disc: 2
1. Turanglila-Symphonie: VIII. Developpement de l'Amour
2. Turanglila-Symphonie: IX. Turangalila 3
3. Turanglila-Symphonie: X. Final
4. L'ascension: I. Majeste du Christ demandant sa gloire a son Pere
5. L'ascension: II. Alleluia sereins d'une ame qui desire le ciel
6. L'ascension: III. Alleluia sur la trompette, Alleluia sur la cymbale
7. L'ascension: IV. Priere du Christ montant vers son Pere

Product Description

Product Description

Turangalîla-Symphonie - L'Ascension / Thomas Bloch, ondes martenot - François Weigel, piano - Orchestre de la Radio Nationale Polonaise - Antoni Wit, direction


If you don't know this towering masterpiece of 20th-century music, then here's the perfect opportunity to sample a compelling performance without hurting your pocket. A work that embraces love and joy, life and death--exuberant, passionate, erotic, sensuous, spiritual, dripping with colour and positively itchy with infectious rhythm. Mountains of sound stand close to gardens of great intimacy touched by the haunting electronic sounds of the ondes martenot. There is something, somewhere in Turangalnla to appeal to anyone. This is a cracking performance which can hold its head up alongside the best, the players plunging headlong into every hair-raising challenge (try the famous "Joie du sang des etoiles") yet also, under the impressive Antoni Wit, able to convey the magic of moments where time stands still, as in "Jardin du sommeil". Weigel and Bloch are admirable. The recording is excellent--spacious and detailed. L'Ascension is in its way just as much a showcase for the talents (not least the brass) of the PNRSO. These four meditations (one a vibrant scherzo) on the ascension of Christ express the very heart of Messiaen's Catholicism yet reach out to a far wider sense of the spiritual in man. Again, a first-rate performance. --Andrew Green

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I once read a review where Naxos was nicknamed "the little label that could." Sure, it's tacky, but it works. Naxos has this uncanny knack of releasing incredibly good recordings of all sorts of literature, but what's unique is that these aren't just good recordings. In my humble opinion, many Naxos releases are actually better overall productions than their better-known and pricier counterparts.
Take the Naxos release of Olivier Messiaen's "Turangalila Symphony." There's a good chance you've never heard of "Turangalila," and the reason is simple. It's an enormous, staggering work. As if the sheer difficulty of the music isn't enough, it lasts a full ten movements. And let's not also forget the kind of themes that pervade it. In Messiaen's own words, it is a "song of love, hymn to joy, time, movement, rhythm, life and death."
There are not that many recordings of "Turangalila" for the above reasons. It's an insanely difficult work. So perhaps it is somewhat surprising that the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Antoni Wit, decides to attempt to conquer it. The result is far and away the best recording ever made of the darn piece. Sure, you've never heard of the orchestra or the conductor. And sure, it costs nothing compared to recordings with better known performers. I still insist that it's the best that's out there. I've probably already said too much. I wholeheartedly encourage you to buy this release immediately and experience the piece and the stellar performance for yourself. I guarantee you that you won't regret it.
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Format: Audio CD
In 1993 Wit and the Polish National Radio Orchestra gave one of the first concert performances of Messiaen's last work ECLAIRS SUR L'AU-DELA. It so impressed the composer's widow that she allowed the recording of the concert to be released as the premiere recording of the work..This recording of TURANGALILA and L'ASCENSION by Wit confirm even more his credentials as one of the finest interpreters of Messiaen's works. Wit deftly works his way into this massive score and avoids becoming muddled down in some of the more thickly scored parts. The balance between the Ondes Martenot and the orchestra is also nicely handled. Although it is a solo instrument in the work it is also for the most part a part of the ochestral fabric. Too many performances have the Ondes drowing out the orchestra when it should only be a part of it. Wit and Naxos splendid engineering avoids that trap. TURANGALILA is one of the most spirited and exuberant works of the 20th Century and it is those two qualities that Wit abundantly brings to the score. His performance of L'ASCENSION is as impressive . At times, especially in the 3rd and 4th movements, he brings a sensuality to the score that sweeps you into it.Naxos does it again! Quality performances at a near give away price. Hopefully there will be more Messiaen from Wit.
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By A Customer on April 17 2001
Format: Audio CD
This is the only Turangalila I know, but still I feel I can say that these ravish polish players don't know any compromise; they get to work here with a gripping, almost merciless drive and fervor, that I can only take my hat and bow... If you want to relax, look elsewhere, but if you'd like to take a walk on the wild side, this is the one for you. Bad to the bone, or to the loudspeakers or your neighbors ears, that is.
The piece itself, oddly enough, reminds me of Mussorgsky's "Pictures" work from time to time, as it has also an eastern influence that renders it a bit exotic, especially through the well embedded Ondes Martenot. It's like Mussorgsky meets Schoenberg, so to speak. The sound is good and clear, but also hard as glass, just in tune with a white hot performance like this one.
In summary, if you want something extraordinary and different, go for it. Five stars to Antoni and the boys, well done and well deserved.
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Format: Audio CD
The Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra and Antoni Wit have made a WHOLELOTTA discs for Naxos. These discs of Messiaen's music may well be the jewel in their crown...at least so far.
You always have to fasten your musical seat belts when dealing with the mightly enigmatic music of Messiaen. No exception here. Yet Wit and his band seem to have their stuff together on this recording. This makes for Messiaen as it should be...free, full of life, without losing vision and insight.
The price alone should be enough to persuade those unsure souls who've yet to enter Messiaen's musical world to give it a whirl. If not, let me encourage you--take the leap! This recording will not disappoint.
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