Sometimes mere chance makes for the happiest musical experiences. More than thirty years ago the MDG team traveled to Warsaw to record chamber compositions by Béla Bartók and Benjamin Britten with the Polish Chamber Orchestra. Soon after this release the public and music critics acclaimed this recording as the absolute benchmark for the Divertimento and the “Bridge Variations.” Since this project was concluded sooner than planned, a spontaneous decision was made to use the remaining time to produce encore pieces from the orchestra’s repertoire. Now being released for the first time on CD, Encores offers genuine listening pleasure and interpretations of lasting freshness.
The program including “The Entrance of the Queen of Sheba“ and the “Badinerie” from Bach’s Suite in B minor as well as “Eine kleine Nachtmusik” and Telemann’s “Ouverture à la Pastorelle” ranges over an entertaining spectrum of orchestral miniatures rightly regarded as popular favorites. Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s Cello Concerto and a Concerto Grosso by George Frideric Handel offer the orchestra’s fabulous musicians opportunities to display their outstanding solo qualities. Mozart’s three Divertimenti round off this delightful compilation.
Another happy occasion: the CD is being released precisely in time for Jerzy Maksymiuk’s eightieth birthday. For many years he was the principal conductor of this ensemble known today as the Sinfonia Varsovia and played an influential role in its history. He ranks with Yehudi Menuhin, Krzysztof Penderecki, and, most recently, Marc Minkowski as musicians who have had an impact on the orchestra.
“Why the long wait?” A question that listeners will immediately ask because of the superb sound quality of this disc even then produced in digital technology. Carefully remastered, this audiophile gem attests to MDG’s uncompromising quest, from the very beginning, for the perfect listening experience in enthralling sound.