Rossini – Instrumental Music

Budapest Festival Orchestra

Original Recording Format: DSD 64
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Rossini was a genius, especially as a melody-composer. His instrumental music is like colorful opera arias or ensembles without words. To perform these melodies one needs to declamate, articulate and characterize like actors on stage. And of course one needs to have a brilliant, fast tongue and fast fingers. Italians talk fast with beautiful diction, especially in a heated discussion. It has been great fun to record this music with members of the Budapest Festival Orchestra, where it is our aim to offer creative opportunities for individual members. I believe that this music needs clarity of sound: like that of the dry but transparent Italian theatres, sparkling of vitality. Ivan Fischer Not so very long ago there was a newspaper article about terrorism by magpies. Car windows were being shattered by the birds as they tossed pebbles out of their nests, pebbles that they had previously gathered because they had mistakenly thought that they were eggs. Magpies. The burglars of the air. Their nests are veritable treasure troves; they collect bright shiny objects. Just like human beings! And their collector’s impulses can disrupt society, albeit on a smaller scale. A French newspaper article was written about this in Rossini’s day, and the report inspired the French writer Baudouin d’Aubigny to write a melodrama, La pie voleuse (The thieving magpie). In the play, a Parisian servant girl is accused of stealing a silver spoon. When she ends up behind bars, thanks to the machinations of a lecherous mayor, the silver turns up again … in a magpie’s nest. The girl is exonerated and the story ends happily, according to prescription. In 1817, Rossini based his opera La gazza ladra on this French play. It was a smash hit, comical and touching in turn, and it played all over Europe and even as far afield as New York. Because two of the male roles in the opera served in the French army, Rossini mixed a few military elements into his music. Of course he did so with a healthy dose of irony. After a triple drumroll, he launches into a strange march, which is seemingly routed in short order by a frivolous d minor tune. The end of the overture, of course, carries Rossini’s distinctive visiting card: his patented crescendo, as the volume gradually swells, but the music remains essentially unchanged. In this way he achieves a maximum effect, without too much emotional involvement. Rossini, the master of the frivolous and absurd….


Please note that the below previews are loaded as 44.1 kHz / 16 bit.
La Scala di Seta - Overture
Serenata per piccolo compresso
String Sonata in G major - Moderato
String Sonata in G major - Andantino
String Sonata in G major - Allegro
Le Rendez-vous de chasse
Variazioni a più strumenti obbligati
Andante, e Tema con Variazioni per quattro strumenti a fiato
Semiramide - Overture

Total time: 01:04:55

Additional information





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van den Hul

Digital Converters

Meitner A/D DSD / Meitner DA

Mastering Engineer

Jared Sacks

Mastering Equipment

B&W 803 diamond series


Bruel & Kjaer, Schoeps

Mixing Board

Rens Heijnis custom design





Original Recording Format


Hein Dekker

Recording Engineer

Hein Dekker, Jared Sacks

Recording location

Budapest Hugarny 2008

Recording Software

Pyramix bij Merging

Recording Type & Bit Rate



Audiolab, Holland

Release DateJanuary 19, 2014

Press reviews


Een orkestrale dollemansrit! Gordels om en genieten maar. Wie behoefte heeft aan muziek die sprankelt en bruist, kan zijn hart ophalen aan de nieuwe cd van Ivan Fischer met zijn Hongaarse Keurkorps het Boedapest Festival Orkest, een plat m,et louter instrumentale werken van Rossii, die elke vorm van winterblues als bij toverslag doet verdwijnen. (…) (…) Fischer en de zijnen laten de muziek mousseren als een glas met de duurste champagne. Proost!!


Onweerstaanbaar spannend, het koperkoraal is mooi en sonoor, de manier waarop de strijkers daar halverwege uit tevoorschijn breken is een toonbeeld van licht, lucht, brille en stijlgevoel. (…)

Opus Klassiek

Wat een Feest! (…) de kostelijkste en smakelijkste melodieën, verpakt in een buitengewoon kleurrijke instrumentatie (…) (…) De sublieme strijkersklank, de kruidige houtblazers en de rondborstige hoorn zijn een ware lust voor het oor. Een geweldige uitgave met deels zelden of nooit gehoord repertoire


een schitterende en cd met repertoire dat je niet snel met deze Hongaarse musici verband brengt. (…) (…) Ieder stuk is een verrukking voor het oor. Schaf deze muzikale heerlijkheden aan. Luister Ga naar de muziek luisteren tijdens een overheerlijke Italiaanse maaltijd. Mij hoor je dan niet meer, het orkest speelt wel verder; ‘Non ti voglio perdere mai…. Ti amo!’


Het orkest brengt deze Rossini in al zijn Italiaanse bravoure, feestelijk en met een smaakvolle elegantie (…) (…) De klank van het orkest mag zonder schroom uniek genoemd worden, haarzijde zachte strijkers en verzorgde slanke hoorns. (…)

BBC Music Magazine

Exhilarating Rossini The opening moments of this disc leave no doubt that it’s going to be a enormous fun, and from a virtuoso orchestra with a superb conductor (…) (…) Fischer has shown, in a wide repertoire, that he has deep understanding not only of the glittering surfaces of music we find here, but also of its deeper meanings. (…) (…) Can Rossini have imagined any of this music would receive such impeccable performances?

Audiophile Audition

Fischer’s Budapest Festival Orchestra is composed of virtuoso players, easily fit for the gambolling delights of Rossini’s instrumental music. Hunting horns, pirouetting clarinets and singing violins: they’re all paraded in this programme of two opera overtures, a serenade, variation sets and such. Times What a delightful and surprising disc this is! The two overtures, of course, are well known, the String Sonata somewhat less so, but the remaining works are almost entirely unfamiliar, and they are all delightful. (…) (…) The performances are as delicious as the music itself. The woodwinds are light and bubbly, the rhythms admirably taut in the two overtures, and the percussion crisp but never overbearing. All of the soloists acquit themselves admirably, and while you might think that the idiom turns tiresome taken in large doses, in reality there’s so much timbral contrast -what with pieces for strings, winds, and colorful chamber-like combinations of the two–that you can listen to the entire program at a sitting. And of course, Channel Classics’ engineering is state of the art, in all formats. A wonderful release! Classics Today Opening and then rounding out the program with a couple of Rossini’s sparkling overtures is a great idea. The various instruments become at times the characters in the operas, but without singing – for those of us who prefer our opera that way. The Budapest Festival Orchestra is no low-cost second-string Eastern European ensemble. They have achieved an outstanding reputation, have recorded major symphonies for Channel Classics, and have toured the world. Channel Classics’ typical audiophile-level sonics garnish the surround sonics of this melody-rich SACD.

The Times

Fischer’s Budapest Festival Orchestra is composed of virtuoso players, easily fit for the gambolling delights of Rossini’s instrumental music. Hunting horns, pirouetting clarinets, and sighing violins: they’re all paraded in this programme of two opera overtures, a serenade, variation sets and such. A disc to enjoy.

International Record Review

This is a disc of great charm, and it is no conventional Rossini anthology either. (…) (…) the playing has an unforced geniality that is completely right for this music. (…) (…) The sound of this compatible SACD is warm and clear and the informative notes complete an attractie release.


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