Romeo & Juliet
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Boris Blacher an original musical voice a must for opera lovers.

Born in China, son of a Baltic businessman employed by the Tsar, Boris Blacher was a true iconoclast, who traveled to exotic locales and studied architecture and mathematics but who, during the 1920's, took up music, writing works redolent of American jazz, which would get him into trouble after the rise of the Nazis. Yes, Blacher was another composer of "degenerate" music who did eventually write a genuine "hit" the Orchestral Variations on a Theme of Paganini, a much-recorded piece. In recent years, more of his output has been released on CD, revealing a fascinating, original musical voice. This unique adaptation of Shakespeare's Rome and Juliet modifies the work in striking ways, omitting some characters, telescoping the action, even resorting to having different characters perform their lines simultaneously, creating an "overlapping dialogue" effect. Musically, the ensemble writing often bears a striking resemblance to Stravinsky's "L'Histoire du Soldat," perhaps a tribute from one master to another.
Boris Blacher, composer
Romeo and Juliet
Cheasapeake Chamber Orchestra, Jeffrey Silberschlag, conductor, David Robinson, N'Kenge Simpson, Kathleen Wilson, Irvine Peterson, Leneida Crawford, Larry Vote, Michael Tolaydo

"The vocal writing is compelling in its clarity and dramatic point, and...there are moments of great symphonic tenderness expressed in Blacher's quite special and transcendent brand of lyricism. ...In summary, this release fills a recording void, and does so with distinction." (Fanfare)
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