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Without doubt the more famous swiss composer of the century (and probably of the History), Arthur Honegger worked extensively in the film world since his first score for La Roue (1923). His music for the 1934 french version of the Victor Hugo classic Les Mis‚rables, emerge in an important moment in the history of Film Music, just when the film creators has free themselves from the tyings of the first years of sound films, and again turn their eyes to the Music as an important member of the film product. Honegger knew how to reconcile his more classic theories and techniques, widely showed on his symphonic and choral work, and put part of the foundations of a new language; in Les Mis‚rables is clearly evident his strongly dramatic style which helped and complement the image, far away from the use of underlined sounds. Neither he use the schemes of thematic expansions near to the wagnerian theories, but prefer to obtain his results from a series of general spirit states; this must be what more impressed the young Mikl¢s R¢zsa when he saw the movie, a fact of capital importance because, as the own hungarian composer tolds, it was this Honegger music what convince him of the viability and validity of the film music. Reconstruction by swiss conductor Adriano, a champion of the film music of his compatriot, tries to be the more accurate and faithfully possible, retrieving material from Honegger retired from the final cut of the film, and eliminating, on the opposite, somebody else's music. The result, as any other record from the Marco Polo Film Music Classics is excellent, and should animate the fan to get close to this music, so different from the actual one, but at the same time so modern. It is recommended, if possible, to compare this so european score with the one compose by the northamerican Alfred Newman to the, very close in time, 1935 version: a healthy exercise of history in two terrific works.

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