<< -- 2 -- Robert Anderson OFTEN RAVISHING
When writing about Peter and the Wolf in his 'short' autobiography
of 1941, Prokofiev emphasised the unimportance of the story and relevance of
showing to children the various musical instruments involved in the tale.
As a little older myself, and familiar enough with a quacking oboe or grumpy bassoon,
I find the tale irresistible and enter passionately into the moments of tension
when so many of the characters are under dire threat. Willie Rushton as narrator
keeps me on tenterhooks. It is therefore a moment of intense relief when Peter leads
home his 'triumphant procession'
[listen -- 5 86175 2 track 11, 0:00-1:22].
It seems an odd idea to present three of Debussy's 'Children's Corner' pieces in
an arrangement for wind instruments by Graham Sheen, when the composer himself took
a hand in André Caplet's orchestral version. I can only assume that Chouchou's
toys, here in anomalous company, appeared originally in 1984 with other wind works.
Debussy gave the publisher strict instructions about the front cover to the work:
he must 'surround the Golliwogg's head with a golden halo'. The great virtue of this
version is that the two-horn quotation from Tristan und Isolde stands out with
literally brazen clarity
[listen -- 5 86175 2 track 14, 0:54-2:19].
Copyright © 20 July 2005
Robert Anderson, London UK