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Bartók: The Concerto Album
Bela Bartok, Charles Dutoit, David Shallon
Bartók: The Concerto Album
Genre: Classical
  •  Track Listings (8) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (8) - Disc #2
  •  Track Listings (15) - Disc #3


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A remarkable Bartok bargain, with first-rate performances
Santa Fe Listener | Santa Fe, NM USA | 03/30/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"EMI's series of triple CDs, marketed as "3," hasn't caught on so far as I can see, but most contain a scattering of first-rate recordings that not long ago went for full price. That holds true in this Bartok box with Argerich's Piano Cto. #3 and Kyung-Wha Chung's Violin Cto. #2. Also in the category of a great performance is Richter's Piano Cto. #2 with Maazel. There is also Kubelik's Concerto for Orchestra with the Royal Phil., not the most energetic account but certainly of interest. I expected Ormandy's Miraculous Mandarin and Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta to be pretty weak tea, and to be sure there's not a touch of the barbaric about either one -- yet what splendid string playiing from the Philadelphians in outstanding analog sound. (The set is somewhat misleadingly labeled Bartok Concertos but contains this one CD of ballet and orchestral music.)

It would be hard to imagine a better compendium aat this ultra-bargain price (below Naxos). The complete rundown is as follows:

Concerto for Orchestra, Sz.116
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Rafael Kubelík

Violin Concerto No. 2, Sz 112
Kyung-Wha Chung
City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Sir Simon Rattle

Piano Concerto No. 2, BB 101, Sz. 95
Sviatoslav Richter
Orchestre de Paris, Lorin Maazel

Piano Concerto No. 3, BB 127, Sz. 119
Martha Argerich
Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Charles Dutoit

Violin Concerto No. 1, Sz 36
Dmitry Sitkovetsky
Philharmonia Orchestra, Libor Pesek

Viola Concerto, Sz120 (Ed. Tibor Serly)
Tabea Zimmermann
Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, David Shallon

The Miraculous Mandarin, Op. 19, Sz. 73 (Suite)
Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy

Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, Sz. 106
Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy"