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Leonard Slatkin
“For our second disc in the Orchestre National de Lyon’s Berlioz series, we travel to Italy. The composer wrote Harold in Italy for Niccolò Paganini, who said that there was not enough for the solo viola to do in the piece. After hearing it, Paganini told Berlioz that it was a masterpiece. More of a symphony than a concerto, the work has all the hallmarks of genius, from the ominous opening to the orgiastic conclusion. The second movement is one of the most sublime pieces of writing imaginable.

It continues to be a great pleasure to perform and record the music by this French master with an orchestra that resides about an hour from where the composer was born. We all look forward to the continuation of this project.”

- Leonard Slatkin, music director of the Orchestre National de Lyon.

Naxos NBD0042


Naxos 8.573297

Listen to an extract from Movt. II:
Marche de pèlerins chantant la prière du soir

Steps to Parnassus: Leonard Slatkin talks to Jeremy Siepmann

About the Artists

Leonard Slatkin is currently music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and of the Orchestre National de Lyon, and principal guest conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. His one hundred-plus recordings have earned seven GRAMMY® Awards and more than sixty GRAMMY® Award nominations. He has received many other honours, including the 2003 US National Medal of Arts, France’s Chevalier of the Legion of Honour and the League of American Orchestras’ Gold Baton for service to American music.

In 2010, Lise Berthaud was invited to perform Harold en Italie with Marc Minkowski and Les Musiciens du Louvre for the opening night of the prestigious Berlioz Festival at La Côte-Saint-André. In 2013, her first recording as a soloist with pianist Adam Laloum was awarded several prizes, including the sought after Diapason d’Or. Also last year, she was selected to be part of BBC Radio 3’s New Generation Artists scheme. Her début at the BBC Proms in September 2014 will be with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Andrew Litton at London's Royal Albert Hall.

The Orchestre National de Lyon became a permanent orchestra of 102 musicians in 1969, with Louis Frémaux as its first musical director (1969–1971). It was run and supported financially by the City of Lyon, which in 1975 provided it with a concert hall, the Lyon Auditorium. Under the leadership of Emmanuel Krivine (1987–2000), David Robertson (2000–2004) and Jun Märkl (2005-2011), the orchestra increasingly received international critical acclaim. Leonard Slatkin has been its music director since the 2011–2012 season.

Companion discs

Orchestral Works, Vol. 1

“The Shéhérazade overture finds
a delicate balance ... Slatkin shaping the music with a potent mix of the sensuous, sinuous, sinister and spirited.”
- Gramophone

Orchestral Works Vol. 2

“[Slatkin] shows real empathy with this magical repertoire, and he draws playing of uncommon composure and contagious application from his scrupulously prepared Lyon band.”

Symphonie fantastique

“This is a natural, sophisticated, glowing performance captured
in the finest sound I’ve ever
heard given to the work.
An absolute winner.”
- MusicWeb International

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