Ear Supply: SSO Meets MP3

It’s getting to be a challenge to keep up with the Seattle Symphony’s new initiatives since Ludovic Morlot arrived. Under Gerard Schwarz, the orchestra had recorded prolifically for the Naxos label, mostly Russian and American music. But now they’re launching their own, Seattle Symphony Media; April 29 was the physical release date for the first three CDs (already available on iTunes, Amazon, and through the SSO website). The label will release both studio and live concert recordings, with repertory chosen to show off not only how well they play, but Morlot’s programming priorities and interest in contemporary music. Both are in evidence on a luminous disc of the music of Morlot’s compatriot Henri Dutilleux (1916–2013). A combination of Saint-Saëns’ “Organ” Symphony and Ravel showpieces is a sonic wonder; a boisterous American disc includes (with Ives and Carter) the performance of Gershwin’s An American in Paris that dazzlingly announced the Morlot era at the opening concerts of his first season in 2011. Future recording plans include more Dutilleux and some of the orchestra’s recent commissions. (FYI: John Luther Adams’ Pulitzer Prize–winning Become Ocean, which they took to Carnegie Hall this month, will be released in the fall on Cantaloupe Music.) recordings.seattlesymphony.org/Recordings

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