Unvarnished truth: period instrument Mussorgsky

Mussorgsky & Tchaikovsky: Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment/ Jurowski ****

Royal Festival Hall, 15th January 2014

Sergei Leiferkus © Haydn Rawstron Ltd

Sergei Leiferkus
© Haydn Rawstron Ltd

The Campaign for Real Mussorgsky has been fighting the good fight for decades. Claudio Abbado was a paid-up member, recording the original version of Night on a Bare Mountain back in 1980. Valery Gergiev has performed both the 1869 and 1872 versions of Boris Godunov in the composer’s own orchestrations rather than Rimsky-Korsakov’s glossy revision. Here, Vladimir Jurowski and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment went one step further… performing original versions of these scores on period instruments. It was like stepping inside the Kremlin and – not inappropriately for Mussorgsky – downing a shot of vodka.

Read the full review at Bachtrack.

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