The London Symphony Orchestra (Pappano) – Sir Peter Maxwell Davies – Symphony No. 10 (2014) [B&W FLAC 24/96]

The London Symphony Orchestra (Pappano) – Sir Peter Maxwell Davies – Symphony No. 10 (2014) {B&W Society of Sound} [24/96]
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time ~ 42 minutes | 950 MB | Genre: Classical, Symphony, Orchestral
© 2012 LSO | Official Digital Download – Source: bowers-wilkins.com | front & back cover

The Symphony No 10 was comissioned and premiered by the LSO in February 2014 to mark the eightieth birthday of Sir Peter Maxwell Davies. Newly-commissioned works are a step into the unknown for composer and commissioner alike. Sometimes remarkable works are born, and sometimes not. But no-one could possibly have guessed in what circumstances the Symphony No 10 would come to be written.

The work’s relationship with mortality is a curious one, completed as it was against the severe odds of the composer’s life-threatening illness during 2013. The sheer determination of Maxwell Davies to finish the symphony, after an unexpected diagnosis and during gruelling treatment, is extraordinary in itself. By a strange coincidence, the composer had already chosen to write a work bound up with the life and death of an artist.
The inspiration for the Symphony No 10 is the seventeenth century Italian architect Francesco Borromini (1599-1667), whose architecture has fascinated Maxwell Davies since his own studies in Italy in the late fifties. The piece explores the concept of sound as architecture, not unlike Borromini’s own preoccupation with ‘form, volume and light’. Its divine spark, however, is Borromini’s ‘last testament’, an extraordinary text written as the architect met his slow end following a suicide attempt. After a lifetime of public criticism, the baroque genius takes his own life, committing his extraordinary reflections to paper in the two days it takes him to die. The text is used in the closing movement of the symphony, which is scored for orchestra, baritone and chorus.

The tenth symphony’s genesis and ambition takes it far beyond any notion of programmatic music. The close relationship of the subject matter to the composer’s own experience and artistic preoccupations has resulted in a dramatic work of art, and one whose technical assurance mirrors Borromini’s own.
Symphony No 10 could have no more persuasive advocate than Sir Antonio Pappano, a conductor with his own links to Italy and its artistic traditions. He is clearly enriched by his collaboration with the composer and the LSO gives a fantastic performance full of the drama, light and shade demanded by the score. Giving a voice to the rage of the dying architect, the baritone Markus Butter is outstanding.

Tracklist:
01 – Symphony No 10 Part 1 – Adagio
02 – Symphony No 10 Part 2 – Allegro
03 – Symphony No 10 Part 3 – Presto
04 – Symphony No 10 Part 4 – Adagio

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