Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Rachmaninoff Vespers – Polyanski 1986

The Rach vespers are among my favourite works, and singing or conducting them is one of life's ultimate pleasures. Just listen to the alto lines, for example. Instead of being humdrum fillers-in of textures, the altos are powerhouses: the horn section, not the violas! 

And I've always loved this performance in particular. And performance it is – it was recorded live in Smolensk Cathedral in 1986. Polyansky's concentration never wavers, and the USSR Ministry of Culture Chamber Choir sing wonderfully. You can hear them tiring and having to make that exra effort in the final section, where Polyansky lets the tempo simply float timelessly, but by golly they rise to the challenge amazingly.

This old Melodya CD has been out of print for years.

I've ripped it to FLAC with a cue-sheet, and embedded the cover art.

Download from Rapidshare


  1. A wonderful and etheral reading of Rachmaninov's glorious Vespers. I have for years thought that Sveshnikov's recording from the '60's was untouchable but I may have to think again...
    Thank you for sharing,

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  3. Hi, is there any chance to have a new link, please?