Short Takes: Jun. 29, 1992


Brooding Triumph

Imagine a symphony at once brooding and luminous, tragic and triumphant, spun from a single unending melody in three long, seamless slow movements. Here it is, the "Symphony of Sorrowful Songs" by HENRYK GORECKI, newly released on Elektra Nonesuch, with David Zinman conducting soprano Dawn Upshaw and the London Sinfonietta. The tenebrous string texture is punctuated by Upshaw's ethereally intoning a 15th century Polish lament and, later, a mother's dirge for her murdered son, whose words were inscribed in 1944 on the wall of a Gestapo prison. The result is chilling, moving, unique. With the collapse of communism,...

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