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Paul Paray

Paul Paray

For more information:

  • Brendan Wehrung's Paray bio and discography

  • Posted to: rec.music.classical.recordings
    Subject: Re: PAUL PARAY & the Detroit Symphony
    Date: Thu, 06 Feb 1997

    Jim Lether asked:

    Any admirers out there for the recordings (on Mercury) of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra under the great French maitre Paul Paray, who directed them from 1952 until 1963?

    What I admire in Paray's conducting is a light, deft touch. Textures tend to be fairly clear and tempos fairly brisk, but he manages to do this without sacrificing grace, charm, or line. There are sometimes problems with the orchestra (most notably an underpowered string section), but for the most part, they tend to make a more loving noise than many better-upholstered groups.

    I seem to have three Paray CD's right now, all on Mercury with the Detroit SO. One is a disc of Berlioz, with some overtures and the Symphonie Fantastique (434 328-2), which finally opened the Symphonie to my ears -- bright, bracing, never weighed down by its own ponderousness, and thrilling from start to finish.

    Another is a disc of Bizet, with a suite from Carmen, the two L'Arlesienne Suites, the La Patrie Overture, and two overtures by Ambrose Thomas (434 321-2). Same holds here; I adore the rhythmic point of the L'Arlesienne suites in particular. The Menuetto of #1 begins to sound like a piece out of Nutcracker in these hands.

    Third is a CD of Ravel and Ibert (432 003-2), which features gorgeous performances of the Ibert "Escales" and Ravel Rapsodie Espagnole. I'm pondering getting his discs of the Franck Symphony in d and of Debussy (perhaps I can learn to love La Merde at last!).

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    Last updated: September 29, 1999 by James C.S. Liu

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