Bartok and Kodaly - SCO - The Guardian
20 August 2004The Guardian
The music of Zoltan Kodaly is far less familiar to concert-goers now than it was even 20 years ago. Pieces such as the suite from his opera Hary Janos, the Concerto for Orchestra, the Dances of Marosszek and the Peacock Variations were then staples of the orchestral repertoire, but now they are rarities.
Charles Mackerras's account of the Dances of Galanta with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, however, is a reminder of how effective Kodaly's clean-cut, folk-infused music can be, particularly when it is played with precision and a keen ear for the music's rhythmic life and instrumental colour. It is more convincing than Bartok's string Divertimento.
The main work here, though, is Bartok's Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, to which Mackerras brings vividness and a real sense of drama. This may be unexpected repertoire for him, but he should explore it further.
Related LinksScottish Chamber OrchestraBartok & Kodaly