"…this new set features the world premiere of Nott's own superb symphonic synthesis of that work, coupled with Schoenberg’s suite from three years later, and it’s a palpable hit on all counts." Katherine Cooper – Presto Music
The album, released by PENTATONE in November 2021, continues to be praised by the critics, most recently receiving the Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik (German record critics prize) and a Choc du mois from Classica magazine.
Nott's choice to combine two different interpretations of Maeterlinck's play (Debussy's opera and Schoenberg's tone poem) have been applauded by the press and listeners alike. More specifically, journalists praise the decision of Jonathan Nott to condense and rework Debussy's opera into a symphonic suite. The special feature of this arrangement - and it is the first to do so - is that the voices of the opera's protagonists are given to the orchestra's instruments. Jonathan Nott's careful selection of instruments that take up the leitmotivs sung by the characters in the opera allow the orchestra to play the drama of the piece in all its splendour.
"Whereas others have concentrated on the work's interludes (e.g., one created by conductor Erich Leinsdorf that he recorded with the Cleveland Orchestra in 1946), Nott brilliantly distills the essence of the opera into a forty-seven-minute tone poem. In fashioning his treatment so that the work's dramatic arc and symphonic development are retained, Nott has created an orchestral arrangement of integrity that honours the original." Textura
"It’s wonderful to hear the orchestra in such good shape under Nott, the woodwinds – often something of an acquired taste in Ansermet’s day – in particularly fine fettle." Mark Pullinger – Gramophone
Stream or download the album on Spotify & Apple Music, or a copy from Très classique or directly from PENTATONE.