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Bartók himself characterised the hellfire lick of the scampering strings in the finale as a perpetuum mobile. Reiner drives hard, and the result is as vivid as if the recording had been made yesterday rather than all but a half-century ago [listen -- track 5, 0:42-1:38]. As the work nears its end, Bartók piles on the dissonances so that an astringent Pelion has to balance on a very unstable Ossa.

Copyright © 25 February 2004 Robert Anderson, Cairo, Egypt

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Bartók: Concerto for Orchestra

JMCXR-0007 XRCD Stereo 37'23" 1955 BMG Entertainment, 2000 Victor Company of Japan Ltd

Chicago Symphony Orchestra; Fritz Reiner, conductor

Béla Bartók (1881-1945): Concerto for Orchestra

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BARTÓK'S VIOLA CONCERTO RESTORED

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