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** RIMSKY-KORSAKOV "Scheherazade," Russian Easter Overture Atlanta Symphony, conducted by Robert Spano, \o7 Telarc\f7

July 22, 2001|JOHN HENKEN

Robert Spano has done some very imaginative programs with his other orchestra, the Brooklyn Philharmonic. He makes his first recording as the new music director of the Atlanta Symphony, however, with the sort of disc that would have been labeled "sonic spectacular" or some such in vinyl days. The sound is certainly vibrant--although in many places more suggestive of engineering tweaks than performance authenticity--and the playing is clean, supple and well-motivated, with sensuously stretched violin solos by Cecylia Arzewski. But there are plenty of other spiffy "Scheherazades" among the 50 or so in current catalogs, including the brilliant Beecham/Royal Philhar-monic gem recently reissued by EMI. Spano and his Atlanta group also deliver the equally familiar Overture with stylish verve and crisp detail.

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