LA PHIL RECOMMENDED: Salonen conducts this “exceedingly beautiful” symphony live from Walt Disney
Concert Hall in 2009.
Arvo Part's Fourth Symphony, subtitled "Los Angeles", was written in 2008 and premiered in
January of the following year, with Esa-Pekka Salonen conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic
That first performance is reprised on this disc. It is the first of Part's symphonic pieces to appear on
ECM New Series, the label closely associated with the Estonian composer since the 1984 release
of Tabula rasa. "The symphony is exceedingly beautiful," wrote Mark Swed in the Los Angeles
Times in January 2009, reviewing the premiere concert.
Part's return to symphonic structure and scope (in a work scored for string orchestra, harp, tympani
and percussion) created great interest amongst press and public, for almost forty years had passed
since the composer's 3rd symphony. In the interim, many of the fundamentals of Part's art had been
overturned, his epochal Tabula rasa wiping the slate clean so that the composer might begin again.
In the new symphony his radically reductive tintinnabulation style is focused upon the larger form.