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SCHMITT, F.: Antoine et Cléopâtre Suites Nos. 1 and 2 / Le Palais Hanté (Buffalo Philharmonic, Falletta)


Naxos 8.573521

   The WholeNote, August 2016
   Ballet Review, August 2016
   Fanfare, May 2016
   Fanfare, May 2016
   Fanfare, May 2016
   Classical Net, March 2016
   American Record Guide, March 2016
   Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review, February 2016
   Musical Toronto, February 2016
   Cinemusical, February 2016
   Pizzicato, January 2016
   WTJU, January 2016
   Classical Music, January 2016
   BBC Music Magazine, January 2016
   New York Arts, December 2015
   The Buffalo News, December 2015
   Infodad.com, December 2015
   The Classical Reviewer, December 2015
   Classical Music Sentinel, December 2015
   Classicalsource.com, December 2015
   MusicWeb International, November 2015
   MusicWeb International, November 2015
   Gramophone, November 2015
   David's Review Corner, November 2015

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Roger Knox
The WholeNote, August 2016

This remarkable disc suggests that Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra concerts under outstanding conductor JoAnn Falletta are well worth the trip for Toronto area music lovers!

…conductor Falletta draws a rich sound and expressive style from the Buffalo Philharmonic strings. © 2016 The WholeNote Read complete review



George Dorris
Ballet Review, August 2016

Under JoAnn Falletta the Buffalo Philharmonic has become a major orchestra, as shown in these performances showcasing Schmitt’s masterly orchestration, equally well recorded. © 2016 Ballet Review



Phillip Scott
Fanfare, May 2016

…Falletta and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra prove to be a winning combination. She paces the music perfectly, whether it is melodramatic or “local color,” and the orchestral textures are warmly and clearly reproduced. © 2016 Fanfare Read complete review



Arthur Lintgen
Fanfare, May 2016

[Falletta] plays this music like Charles Munch or Paul Paray would probably play it, and I can’t think of a better compliment. © 2016 Fanfare Read complete review



Jerry Dubins
Fanfare, May 2016

…listening to this performance gave me goosebumps.

The Buffalo orchestra plays magnificently for Falletta, perhaps better than I’ve ever heard it. © 2016 Fanfare Read complete review



R. James Tobin
Classical Net, March 2016

SCHMITT, F.: Antoine et Cléopâtre Suites Nos. 1 and 2 / Le Palais Hanté (Buffalo Philharmonic, Falletta) 8.573521
SCHMITT, F.: Piano Quintet / A tour d'anches (Berlin Soloists Ensemble) 8.570489

The performances and recording quality here are excellent and I can recommend both of these very welcome discs. © 2016 Classical Net Read complete review



Roger Hecht
American Record Guide, March 2016

The Buffalo Philharmonic’s playing of this difficult music is accomplished… © 2016 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



Grego Applegate Edwards
Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review, February 2016

These are the kinds of scores JoAnn Falletta and the Buffalo Philharmonic do so well with—and so we get a detailed and impassioned reading of the music that does full justice to the composer. Schmitt shows orchestrational brilliance that Falletta takes care to bring to life. © 2016 Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review Read complete review



Paul E. Robinson
Musical Toronto, February 2016

Schmitt’s music is truly symphonic and seethes with emotion…

Falletta and her performers are totally into the music, and the sound quality is rich and full. © 2016 Musical Toronto Read complete review




Steven A. Kennedy
Cinemusical, February 2016

The Buffalo orchestra acquits themselves well with this music. …Falletta continues to add to her vast and often fascinating discography showcasing the great orchestras fortunate to have her on the podium. © 2016 Cinemusical Read complete review




Remy Franck
Pizzicato, January 2016

…JoAnn Falletta succeeds extremely well in realizing the mixture of brilliance and sensuality which characterizes Schmitt’s music, and her readings are intense and expressive as well. © 2016 Pizzicato Read complete review



Ralph Graves
WTJU, January 2016

…another wonderful performance by Falletta and the BPO. © 2016 WTJU Read complete review




Guy Weatherall
Classical Music, January 2016

The two suites of incidental music Schmitt wrote for a Paris production of Anthony and Cleopatra contain 45 minutes of fascinating music: exquisitely fashioned and appealingly varied in mood, from intimate to orgiastic. Coupled with a fine version of the doom-laden, Poe-inspired Haunted Palace (easily the most persuasive yet recorded), this makes a fine introduction to a neglected composer. © 2016 Classical Music




Christopher Dingle
BBC Music Magazine, January 2016

Crucially, the various musical inferences would not be possible without a ravishing ear for orchestral timbre allied to delicious harmonies, conveyed with finesse by the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under JoAnn Falletta. © 2016 BBC Music Magazine



Steven Kruger
New York Arts, December 2015

Falletta, the Buffalo Philharmonic and Naxos are to be commended for bringing Florent Schmitt effectively back to life. Swoon. Pretend you’re in Egypt. But be prepared to duck! © 2015 New York Arts Read complete review




Jeff Simon
The Buffalo News, December 2015

The music on the disc was ballet music meant to be entr’actes in Schmitt’s opera on Shakespeare’s play. It is a fragrant, vaguely exotic score and…it’s attractive music and very French. © 2015 The Buffalo News Read complete review




Infodad.com, December 2015

This is difficult music to grasp, lying partially within Impressionism and partially in a kind of Scriabinesque mysticism. It is not easy to play, either, but Falletta and the Buffalo musicians handle it very stylishly… © 2015 Infodad.com Read complete review



Bruce Reader
The Classical Reviewer, December 2015

For all Schmitt’s debt to Debussy, Ravel and Stravinsky there is some terrific music here, particularly in the two suites from Antoine et Cléopâtre. The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under JoAnn Falletta is absolutely terrific. With an excellent recording from Tim Handley and informative booklet notes this is a most attractive release. © 2015 The Classical Reviewer Read complete review



Jean-Yves Duperron
Classical Music Sentinel, December 2015

Every palette of orchestral colors is put to use to evoke the atmosphere of the Shakespearian drama. For example, the percussionists must have a field day during the Orgie et Danses episode during which all manner of heavy drums, cymbals, triangles, bells and blocks are used to great effect. © 2015 Classical Music Sentinel Read complete review



Colin Anderson
Classicalsource.com, December 2015

This is music high on imagery, poetic expression and with rivers of colour and description. The time spent with the six pieces passes quickly and rewardingly: terrific brass fanfares to open ‘Le Camp de Pompée’, for example, and the later night music is exotic and perfumed.

…recommended with enthusiasm. © 2015 Classicalsource.com Read complete review



Paul Corfield Godfrey
MusicWeb International, November 2015

JoAnn Falletta obviously believes in the music, extracting every last ounce of colour and passion from these scores, and securing excellent playing from the Buffalo orchestra.

The coupling on this disc is unique to the catalogues, and since the performances are second to none, the CD is self-recommending to those who are unfamiliar with the work of a composer who does not deserve the relative neglect to which he has been consigned. They will thoroughly enjoy themselves, as I did. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review




Dan Morgan
MusicWeb International, November 2015

Falletta plays it straight—no need for gilding of any kind—and her Buffalonians respond with wonderfully nuanced playing.

Quietly sensational Schmitt, superbly recorded; nothing short of a revelation. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review



Tim Ashley
Gramophone, November 2015

… the performances are admirably stylish, while the Buffalo Philharmonic boast nicely dexterous strings and woodwind. © 2015 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone



David Denton
David's Review Corner, November 2015

Florent Schmitt was a Wagner enthusiast who never fitted into the 20th century music scene in his native France, his compositions nowadays seldom performed. Yet those who have troubled to explore his very diverse output will have discovered a composer working in a world of the most brightly coloured and exotic sounds which serve to create vivid scores containing an element of the French Impressionistic era. That made him ideal for the ballet scenes inserted into a Parisian production of Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra, where the legendary dancer, Ida Rubinstein, was cast in the role of Cleopatra. From this he later drew two suites, each in three parts, the opening of both being full of the subtle hues that had become the working tools of Debussy. Those washes of sound on a large musical canvas are offset by a ‘purple patch’ in both suites—a battle scene closing the first suite, and an orgy and dance forming the central part of the second suite. Yet Schmitt was not a composer aimed at shocking his audience, his music was far too cultured, so that his wispy shadows and moments of high drama that whizz past in Le Palais hanté (The Haunted Palace), are captured in a wonderfully translucent score. It was inspired by a poem by Edgar Allan Poe, the score eventually working itself into a frenzy. Throughout Schmitt has found worthy champions in JoAnn Falletta and her magnificent Buffalo Philharmonic, who are themselves a beautifully cultured ensemble, with a brass department that provide the golden glisten Schmitt looks for. The immense amount of detail we hear is equally due to another outstanding quality recording from the producer/engineer, Tim Handley. Fervently recommended. © 2015 David’s Review Corner





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