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Lazarof has a highly developed technical command of orchestration. The Tableaux begin and end with solo piano, and the orchestra is added with gentle subtlety through the twenty-nine-minute work to a climactic point of bold fanfares in the centre [listen -- track 6, 0:00-0:52] and maintaining a constant and colourful interest throughout.

Following closely the composition of the Tableaux came Lazarof's Symphony No 2, written for and dedicated to the Seattle Symphony, its two movements fitting comfortably within a twenty-minute duration. It shows again his command of the orchestra from its mysterious opening [listen -- track 12, 0:00-0:58] and through its well balanced second movement which ends with an untroubled choral.

The Violin Concerto is more of a chamber orchestral piece, written in the spring of 1986 mostly in Zurich, and is rewarding in both lyrical writing for the soloist and a gentle supporting accompaniment. At its heart is a light and energetic Scherzo in which a piano is effectively added to the orchestra [listen -- track 10, 0:00-0:55]. This is a fine introduction to a composer deserving an attentive ear.

Copyright © 17 March 2004 Patric Standford, Wakefield UK


American Classics - Henri Lazarof

8.559159 DDD Stereo REISSUE 72'11" 1990 & 1993 Delos, 2003 Naxos Rights International Ltd

Yukiko Kamei, violin; Garrick Ohlsson, piano; Seattle Symphony; Gerard Schwarz, conductor

Henri Lazarof (born 1932): Tableaux (after Kandinsky) for Piano and Orchestra (1989); Violin Concerto (1985-86); Symphony No 2 (1990)


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