Conductor Stéphane Denève’s triumphant recording of Debussy: Orchestral Works with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra has been awarded the 2012 Diapason d’Or de l’Année. The award, one of the most prestigious in classical music, is selected by a jury comprising critics from France’s Diapason and broadcasters from France Musique.
Debussy: Orchestral Works has garnered universal praise since its release in May 2012, as a double Super Audio Hybrid CD on Chandos.
The Scotsman’s Kenneth Walton said that the recording was, “nothing short of perfection,” adding "Stéphane Denève…has pulled out of the bag a stream of deliciously coloured performances …Truly one for the collection".
In her review for The Observer, Fiona Maddocks writes, “In each of these performances the RSNO, keenly responsive to Denève after his seven seasons as chief conductor, confirm the absolute precision, transparency and… passion required for these scores. The detail in Images is exquisite (with a lovely oboe d’amore solo by Katherine Mackintosh). The Nocturnes, especially Fêtes, achieve a shimmering, decidedly un-Monet-like glaze, and La Mer erupts and glistens".
David Hurwitz from Classics Today calls it “A major achievement,” adding, that it “may well be headed straight for reference status".
Andrew Clark for The Financial Times adds that, “these are among the most seductive Debussy performances I have heard in years".
Stéphane Denève, currently Chief Conductor of Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra, served as the Music Director of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra from 2005 – 2012. Recognised internationally for the exceptional quality of his performances and programming, he regularly appears at major concert venues with the world’s leading orchestras and soloists.
A graduate and prize-winner of the Paris Conservatorie, Denève began his career as Sir Goerg Solti’s assistant with the Orchestre de Paris and Paris National Opera. He also assisted Georges Prêtre and Seiji Ozawa during this time. At home in a broad range of repertoire, he has a special affinity for the music of his native France and is also a champion of new music.
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