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TO 0049
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TO 0049

Bacevicius: Orchestral Music

The Classical Shop
release date: July 2008

Originally recorded in 2008


Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra

Martynas Staskys

Vytautas Lukocius

Aidas Puodziukas



Congress Hall, Vilnius


Daiva Parulskiene


Martin Anderson



Algimantas Mateika

Balys Ragenas


Record Label



Orchestral & Concertos

Total Time - 66:06
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Poème électrique (1932)


Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No.1, Sur les thèmes lituaniens (1929)

 Aidas Puodziukas piano
 Martynas Staskys

Symphony No. 2 Della Guerra (1940)

3 Allegro 7:53
4 Andante funèbre 8:14
5 Allegro molto 5:00

Symphony No. 6 Cosmique (1960)


Graphique (1964)


The Lithuanian pianist and composer Vytautas Bacevicius (1905–70) is one of the undiscovered radicals of the twentieth century. The early works on this CD show him finding his voice, as in the First Piano Concerto, with its echoes of Scriabin, and the Poème électrique, cast in the ‘machinist’ aesthetic in vogue in the 1920s and ’30s. The programmatic Second Symphony depicts the onset of the Second World War which Bacevicius, desperately anxious about his family in Poland and Lithuania, followed from his exile in the New World. And the late Sixth Symphony and Graphique, which show a kaleidoscopic, pointilliste use of orchestral colour, boiling with violent energy, point to an entirely new musical language.

‘Clearly Bacevicius was something of a revolutionary upstart.  […] raw brutality and crackling mechanistic energy… fascinating’

Rob Barnett

MusicWeb - June 2007

‘It’s an excellent sound. The Second Symphony… couldn’t be clearer in its stark expression of anger and anxiety at the European folly. [… I was] struck by the depth of passionate feeling running through both the music and the performances’

Rick Jones

New Statesman - 9 July 2007

‘This enterprising disc of first recordings provides a more or less chronological survey of some of Bacevicius’s more important music. I was immediately struck by the power and originality of what I heard and wondered how on earth this could have been the first time I had had the opportunity to hear any of these works… For anyone remotely interested in Eastern European Music and particularly from between the wars, this is a ‘must have’. Like me you will, I am sure, make a wonderful discovery.’

Derek Warby

MusicWeb - 2007

‘...mystic, introverted scores – startling in their austerity. The performances are first rate.’

Tim Ashley

The Guardian - 10 August 2007

‘...very engaging… Rather than banging monotonously like a steam hammer, Bacevicius’s take on the industrial age tumbles exuberantly forward. […] an excellent way to get to know Bacevicius’s music… further aided by the booklet’s facsimiles, photographs and comprehensive annotations.’

Colin Anderson


International Record Review - October 2007

‘...the fifth and final choice must go to the most startling and electrifying discovery of a heretofore totally unknown radical modernist, Vytautus Bacevicius […] His music is simply unprecedented in every way for its time and place, unusually advanced in its atonality and polyrhythmic density, sounding a bit like a Baltic George Antheil.’

Paul A Snook

Fanfare - November/December 2007

‘Very powerful… Toccata Classics has made a major contribution [in] finally bringing to light the works of this composer […] And a better tool for the re-evaluation could not be asked for. The performances here are first-rate and completely professional. There is not a misstep or irregularity and the musicians have delved deeply into the nature of the music.’

Gordon Rumson

Music & Vision Daily - August 2009

"These fine performances and recordings (from 2003-05) give this colourful music the best possible platform."

Guy Rickards

Gramophone - Awards Issue 2007

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