BEETHOVEN Prometheus/Armonia Atenea,George Petrou

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LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN

Prometheus
Armonia Atenea
George Petrou
Int. Release 02 Jun. 2014
1 CD / Download
0289 478 6755 5 CD DDD DH


Petrou's Athenians launch into the overture with a bang, and play the rest of this alluring music with zest and zing.

George Petrou has full measure of the music's dramatic qualities . . ., which can be sinewy (No 2) or gently bucolic (No 10). The refined shaping, firm attack and piquant timbres underline the strength and suppleness of Beethoven's inspiration.

. . . an unusually exciting reading of a work usually regarded as second-class Beethoven. With clear sound from Athens' Dimitris Mitropoulos Hall, this is a recommended fresh addition to the Beethoven literature.

A fierce energy leaps out of the opening chords of Beethoven's only ballet score -- it's an immensely exciting start to a recording that has you on the edge of your seat. Primary colours abound in the orchestral texture, and the faster section of the overture keeps the music on a tight rein, with rhythms and phrasing precise and alert . . . The grainy sound of the period instruments gives a lightness and transparency to the textures, and George Petrou keeps the music moving so that you can easily imaginge it being danced. That's a hallmark of the whole ballet: playing that's subtle and individual -- chamber music on a large scale -- and a high level of listening inform the performance. Capture all that in a recording that gives space to the sound, but not too much clouding resonance, and you have a winner.