A recording with the Berne Symphony Orchestra under guidance of Dimitrij Kitajenko comprising works of Kletzki, Martin and Liebermann. Soloists are Baritonist René Koch and Christian Roellinger on saxophone.
Born in St. Petersburg in 1940, Dmitrij Kitajenko studied at the Glinka School of Music and the conervatories of St. Peterburg and Moscow. Kitajenko first earned international acclaim as a prizewinner at the first Herbert von Karajan Competition in Berlin. During 14 years he was the principal conductor of the Moscow Philharmonic (1976-1990). Another following 14 years saw him as principal conductor of the Berne Symphony Orchestra (1990-2004). His work during this period enriched Bernese musical life enormously. Dmitrij Kitajenko is considered as leading interpreter of Russian music. His interpretations of late Romantic composers was noteworthy, too. His imagination and committment are also evident regarding rare or neglected works, as is the case with this edition of Swiss composers.
Berne Symphony Orchestra (BSO)
The Bernese Symphony Orchestra (BSO) was founded in 1877. Since then it has been led by a number of noteworthy musicians, including Fritz Brun (from 1909-1941), Luc Balmer and Charles Dutoit. Paul Kletzki's conductorship (1964-1968)marked a period of extraordinary development for the orchestra. In retrospect, Kitajenkos leadership led to comparable results. thereby the Berne Symphony Orchestra has developed a unique sound marked by remarkable registerwise balance and extended dynamic range. The BSO and Dmitrij Kitajenko earned overhelming praise and were considered to be among Switzerland's most prestigious symphony orchestras.
Swiss bass-baritone René Koch studied at the Music Academy in Lucerne voice with Hermann Fischer. Further eminent singers and teachers a.o. were Siegfried Lorenz, Andreas Schmidt, Theo Adam, Philippe Huttenlocher.
Christian Roellinger was born in 1964 near Mulhouse in French Alsace. He studied saxophone with Jean-Georges Korper (in Basel) and with Jacques Desloges (in Versailles, completing his studies with honours and a "Premier prix d'exellence-first prize for exellence").
Paul Kletzki (1900-1973)
Paul Kletzki was born in Lodz (Poland). Following musical studies, he first made a name himself as a composer. Although he believed to have lost all of his manuscript during the bombing of Milan (1943, in World War II), his compositions were unearthed two years later. Amongst his second symphony, which Toscanini premiered at La Scala in 1946.
Kletzki found refuge from war and persecution in Switzerland. Berne and Geneva became his work's centrepoint. Concerts halls and recording studios around the globe soon opened their doors to Paul Kletzki as conductor. Therby a. o. he led the Philharmonia Orchestra London and the Orchestre da la Suisse Romande (as Ernest Ansermet's successor). His range as memorable interpreter included the works of Beethoven, Mahler, Bruckner, Prokoviev, Honegger and Bartók.
The emotional statements of Kletzki's work are expressed by somewhat biting sonorities, by direct and profound eloquence, and by growing intensity. Something very different from Mahler's rending cries or Strauss' sensuality. Kletzki's Second Symphony was composed in 1928. Its Romatic-late Romantic music expresses melancholy, pain and resignation.
Frank Martin (1890-1974)
Frank Martin was born in Geneva and died in the Netherlands. He studied with Joseph Lauber and Emile Jacques-Dalcroze. Stations of his career were Geneva and Cologne as pianist, harpischordist and composition teacher. His compositions bear a unique synthesis of late Romantic elements with impressionism and, at times with dodecaphony. Employing the last element only for expressing diabolic powers. When asked as what he understood music he replied: "...something that could be comprehended directly, sung back with the voice or danced to with the body". Regarding the ballad for alto saxophone Martin renounced the use of jazz elements in favour of of clasical sounds.
Rolf Liebermann (1910-1999)
Rolf Liebermann was born in Zurich and died in Paris. During his entire life Liebermann was known as a brillant, innovative and courageos composer, conductor, director author and producer. A kind of universal genius.
He was a former student of Hermann Scherchen and Vladimir Vogel. As a director he later held "pole positions" in radios (Swiss National Radio Beromünster, North German Radio Hamburg), and opera houses (the Hamburg State Opera, United Operas of Paris). Thereby he successfully promoted contemporary music with countless world premieres.
In his own work he employed a free, personally-coloured form of 12-tone music.
"Furioso", composed in 1947, is Rolf Liebermann's most "showy" orchestral work.
Based on two contrasting tone-rows, it has the effect of a volcanic outburst. It is like a wild flow of lava whose power and sensuality are overhelming.
Berne Symphony Orchestra. Kitajenko. Molto Furioso (1997). Musica Helvetica MH CD 99.2. Produced for SRI by Patrick Linder in association with Rolf Grolimund (DRS2).