Manuel de Falla’s richly evocative music erupts in a riot of colour in this vibrant new recording from Kazuki Yamada with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. Works included are the ever popular Noches en los jardines de España and El sombrero de tres picos as well as movements from La vida breve and El amor brujo.
The sultry warm atmosphere of an Andalusian night is almost palpable in Falla’s spellbinding Noches en los jardines de España. With its shimmering, sensuous harmonies, exquisite orchestral colours and exuberant melodies and rhythms, it’s perhaps Falla’s most impressionistic work. Using a large orchestral canvas on which he paints with deft, luminous strokes, Falla skilfully integrates a virtuoso piano part to create lovingly evocative music, full of captivating beauty.
Elsewhere with the sensational ballet El sombrero de tres picos, Falla conjures up music steeped in Andalusian culture which is boisterous, full-bloodied, and urgent. It’s impossible not to be swept along by the drama in this orchestral showpiece. By turns lyrical, sensuous, or dramatic, the meticulously written score is full of surprises and the work positively bristles with wit, energy and exuberant intensity.
Yamada’s previous recordings with the OSR for PENTATONE have been widely praised – “Exquisite and passionate … grace abounds” (BBC Music Magazine), “tastefully refined” (Gramophone). For their more recent release of music by Roussel, Debussy and Poulenc, HRAudio.net noted Yamada’s “exuberant performance” and the OSR “playing …[with] tremendous vitality and enthusiasm, as if their very lives depended on it.”
The pianist Mari Kodama has established an international reputation for profound musicality and articulate virtuosity and has recorded extensively for PENTATONE. Her most recent release with her sister Momo Kodama, a sizzling account of Tchaikovsky ballets, was praised by The Guardian for its “sparkle and style” and described by Artamag as “…a very exciting recording, a ‘labour of love’ by two extraordinary pianists.”
Frequently in demand as an interpreter of Mozart’s works, the mezzo soprano Sophie Harmsen is a regular performer in large international festivals.