View Full Version : Bohuslav Martinu - "The Epic of Gilgamesh" Cantata[2007 Supraphon][FLAC]

12-08-2012, 11:14 PM
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Martinu's The Epic of Gilgamesh is nearly indescribable. Based on the Babylonian poem of the third century B.C., this late work in three parts for soloists, speaker, chorus, and orchestra is part sacred cantata, part secular oratorio, part instrumental symphony, and always very strange. Its themes are uncanny but unforgettable, its harmonies are tonal but unconventional, its sonorities are stark but radiant, its forms are flexible but monumental, and its whole effect is distinctly disquieting.

This particular The Epic of Gilgamesh is a re-release of the better of the two recordings given wide circulation in the early years of the digital era. (The other more stolid and less imaginative recording by Zdenek Kosler and the Slovak Philharmonic was issued first on Marco Polo in 1990 and then reissued on Naxos in 2002.) This 1976 recording features the commanding Jiří Bělohlávek conducting the Prague Symphony Orchestra and the Czech Philharmonic Chorus plus soloists soprano Marcela Machotková, tenor Jiři Zahradníček, baritone Václav Zítek, bass Karel Průša, and speaker Otakar Brousek. Bělohlávek and his crew grasp the work's essential weirdness, its sense of both immense antiquity and vast eternity, but express it in a way that combines the lyric with the dramatic and the epic with the infinite. The result may not be for everybody, not even perhaps for those who love earlier works by Martinu, but for those willing to give it a shot, this is The Epic of Gilgamesh to try. James Leonard

01 - Gilgamesh (Tablets 1, 2)
02 - The Death of Enkidu (Tablets 7, 8, 10)
03 - Invocation (Tablet 12)


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12-09-2012, 09:36 AM
Interesting. Thanks.

12-10-2012, 10:03 AM
Thank you, great work and look forward to this version. I really like the Naxos one but since you say this is better - must be really good.

12-10-2012, 10:06 AM
Oh I didn't say that, I qouted some review.

12-10-2012, 10:20 AM

12-08-2018, 12:50 AM
Would it be possible to reupload the Flac files? I've heard this performed by Kosler on Naxos, and would love to hear what Bělohlávek could do with it.