Elliott Carter's late works on acclaimed Ondine disc
A new Ondine CD of Elliott Carter's late works, from chamber through ensemble to orchestral, has been attracting critical acclaim for its definitive performances.
Ondine has released an outstanding CD collecting late works by Elliott Carter performed by leading interpreters of his music (ODE 1296-2). Gramophone introduced the disc with a major feature on the composer headed "Elliott Carter’s grand finale", noting that "in his last three decades, the US composer’s productivity only increased as the once-painstaking process of composing was replaced by a new-found fluency and freedom." The magazine’s review of the CD predicted that "there are unlikely to be any better discs of contemporary music this year."
Pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard appears as soloist in six of the Carter works on the new CD, including Interventions and Soundings with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the diptych of Dialogues with the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, with both ensembles under the expert direction of Oliver Knussen. Percussionist Colin Currie joins Aimard as sparring partner in Two Controversies and a Conversation, and the disc ends fittingly with the premiere recording of Carter’s final piano trio Epigrams.
"Elliott Carter’s productivity in the final decade of his life was extraordinary… all this music, whatever its scale, has the sinewy energy and constant ability to reinvent itself that was typical of everything he wrote from the 1980s onwards… The pieces here provide a perfect introduction to the spare, regularly surprising world that his last works inhabit…" The Guardian
"The earliest work here, Dialogues for piano and chamber orchestra, was composed when he was 95. The last, Epigrams for piano trio, a collection of characteristically terse miniatures, dates from the year of Carter’s death at the age of 104 in 2012. His music retained its intellectual grip right to the end and an all-star line-up of performers does it proud." Financial Times