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This is the final instalment in our edition of orchestral works by the Czech composer Zdeněk Fibich – yet another example of Naxos' celebrated collection of complete cycles. Previous releases in the series have all been under the direction of conductor Marek Štilec, who will no doubt attract the same positive critical reaction he received for previous volumes with this new release. His performances of Symphony No. 1 (8.572985) and Symphony No. 2 (8.573157), for example, were both named a Recording of the Year by MusicWeb International: ‘The performances surely cannot be bettered.’

FIBICH, Z.: Orchestral Works, Vol. 5 - Symphony No. 3 / Overtures / The Bride of Messina: Funeral March
Final Volume
Zdeněk FIBICH (1850–1900)
Symphony No. 3 in E minor, Op. 53
Šárka – Overture
The Tempest – Overture to Act III
The Bride of Messina – Funeral March

Janáček Philharmonic Ostrava
Marek Štilec

Zdeněk Fibich’s three symphonies project very different qualities: No. 1 (available on 8.572985) prizes structural integration, and No. 2 (8.573157) cyclical unity. Symphony No. 3, written only two years before his untimely death, but at the zenith of his powers as one of the Czech Lands’ leading composers, reveals Fibich’s sustained melodic and atmospheric powers as the music pursues the ‘darkness to light’ trajectory synonymous with the symphony during the 19th century. The remaining pieces, drawn from his best stage works, showcase operatic qualities that extend the dramatic lineage of Smetana. This is the final volume in this series.

Listen to an extract from Symphony No. 3:
I. Allegro inquieto
About the Artists
Marek Štilec began his musical studies on the violin at the Prague Conservatory and studied conducting with Leoš Svárovský at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. An alumnus of the International Järvi Academy and Jac van Steen’s Emerging Conductors Series, he conducts a number of noted European orchestras in addition to the leading orchestras of the Czech Republic.
The Janáček Philharmonic Orchestra was founded in the first half of the 20th century when eminent musicians such as Paul Hindemith, Sergey Prokofiev and Igor Stravinsky arrived in Ostrava. Since then, many international personalities have influenced the artistic development of the orchestra, such as Mariss Jansons, Charles Mackerras, Karel AnĨerl, Sviatoslav Richter, Rudolf Firkušný and Plácido Domingo.
Previous volumes in the Fibich Orchestral Works series
‘… skilful conducting and first rate recording make this disc a real treat.’
MusicWeb International
Orchestral Works • 2
Symphony No. 2 in E flat major
At Twilight • Clarinet Idyll

Venyš • Czech National
Symphony Orchestra • Štilec
‘Definitely recommended.’
‘Marek Štilec offers compelling interpretations of all five pieces … This is turning out to be an excellent series.’
‘… definitive readings. They confer new life to Fibich’s music…’
Classical Lost and Found

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