Slovak composer Eugen Suchon is perhaps best remembered in the west for his two operas, Krútnava (The Whirlpool), and Král' Svätopluk (King Svätopluk), which earned him an international reputation. Yet Suchon composed many orchestral pieces throughout his career, among them the three featured works on this 2015 album by Neeme Järvi and the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra. Suchon's music in his early and middle periods offers a mix of modal themes, impressionistic harmonies, and lush, atmospheric orchestration, and the Metamorfózy shows a sophisticated mingling of these elements. To the extent that he was influenced by Slovak folk melodies, which he regularly arranged and modeled his own themes after, Suchon adopted a national style with a rustic flavor, as exemplified in the Baladická Suita and the Symfonietta rustica, which are comparable in some ways to the pastoral music of Vaughan Williams. Järvi and the Chandos label have had great success in reviving the music of neglected post-Romantic composers, and their first Suchon disc has instant appeal for its accessible selections and fully engaged performances. While this is a limited sampling of an oeuvre that spanned over five decades, it is an excellent introduction and likely to lead to more releases of Suchon's music.
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