Acclaimed conductor and violinst Joseph Swensen again combines his considerable talents in this, his fifth collaboration with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. Joseph Swensen was principal conductor of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra from 1996-2005 at which point he became the orchestra's Conductor Emeritus. Swensen and the SCO have released five recordings together through the Orchestra's partnership with Linn including music by Sibelius, Brahms, Mendelssohn and Prokofiev.
From the opening Preludio to the rustic qualities of the Polka and the exhilarating, symphonically developed Furiant the five-movement Czech Suite is a delightful collection of movements. Even by Dvorak's standards, his Violin Concerto is a richly lyrical work; the first movement begins boldly with a forceful unison statement from the orchestra answered by a bitter-sweet melody from the solo violin whilst the finale is close to the world of the Slavonic Dances and the Czech Suite.
In this version for strings, either solo or orchestral, the Nocturne is an attractive occasional piece, richly textured with affecting harmonies set over a sustained pedal bass note. All in all a fine collection.
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