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Orchestral Works - Witold Lutosławski

Comprising 6 CDs, the Witold Lutosławski. Orchestral Works collection includes almost all of  the great composer's works for orchestra. This edition misses just three pieces:  Preludes and Fugues for 13 strings from 1972, Double Concerto for oboe, harp and chamber orchestra (1980) and Chain I  for chamber orchestra.

To achieve the best quality for recording Witold Lutosławski's orchestral works, it would be hard to find a better orchestra in Poland than the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra conducted by Antoni Wit. Its interpretation of Lutosławski’s music characterizes order and balance, nobility and elegance, so very suitable to the music of the Polish composer. Antoni Wit conducts the orchestra with a certain distance, preferring quiet lyricism over dramatic emotions. The sound of the orchestra is soft, pastel-painted rather than sketched with expressive and sharp tempera. This does not mean, however, that Antoni Wit avoided dynamic climaxes and violent tensions. To the contrary, he introduced them in a refined way, in order to emphasize the lyricism of Lutosławski’s music.


Witold Lutosławski: Orchestral Works. Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, cond. Antoni Wit.

Vol 1: Music Funebre for string orchestra (1958), Chain II for violin and orchestra (1985), Interlude for orchestra (1989), Partita for violin and orchestra (1988), Symphony  No. 4 (1992). Krzysztof Bąkowski - violin. Naxos 1996 - 8.553202, DDD 76'55''.

Vol 2: Symphonic Variations (1938), Little Suite for chamber orchestra (1950), Symphony No. 2 (1967), Piano Concerto (1988). Piotr Paleczny - piano. Naxos 1996 - 8.553169, DDD 77'26''.

Vol 3: Variations on a Theme of Paganini for piano and orchestra (1978), Paroles tissées for tenor and chamber orchestra (1965), Les Espaces du sommeil for baritone and orchestra (1975),  Symphony No. 3 (1983). Bernd Glemser - piano, Piotr Kusiewicz - tenor, Adam Kruszewski - baritone. Naxos 1996 - 8.553423, DDD 72'43''.

Vol 4: Livre pour orchestre (1968), Concerto for Cello and Orchestra (1970), Novelette for orchestra (1979), Chain III for orchestra (1986). Andrzej Bauer - cello. Naxos 1998 - 8.553625, DDD 73'07''.

Vol 5: Concerto for Orchestra (1954), Trois poèmes d'Henri Michaux for mixed choir and orchestra (1963), Mi-parti for orchestra (1979), Overture for String (1949). Singers' Ensemble Camerata Silesia, cond. Anna Szostak. Naxos 1998 - 8.553779, DDD 70'52''.

Vol 6: Symphony No. 1 (1947), Silesian Triptych for soprano and orchestra (1951), Jeux vénitiens for chamber orchestra (1961), Chantefleurs et Chantefables for soprano and orchestra (1990), Postlude I for orchestra (1960). Olga Pasichnyk - soprano. Naxos 1999 - 8.554283, DDD 72'40''.


Polish Music Information Centre
Association of Polish Composers
November 2001
transl. GS, 25 July, 2014

Tags: witold lutosławskiorchestral musicantoni witaudioculture publications

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