Respighi: The Birds, Ancient Airs and Dances – Royal Liège Philharmonic Orchestra, John Neschling

March 2, 2023, 9:00 am

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The Royal Liège Philharmonic Orchestra and John Neschling bring us the sixth and last installment in a series devoted to the orchestral music of Ottorino Respighi. The immense popularity of his Roman Trilogy has had the effect of obscuring many parts of Respighi’s work, including arrangements of pieces from the Renaissance and Baroque periods. These arrangements, a genuine declaration of love for this music, were less an attempt at musicological reconstruction than “free transcriptions for orchestra” as the composer described them. The four suites on this album, Gli Uccelli (The Birds) and the three entitled Ancient Airs and Dances, bear witness to this art.