Paris Under the Stars: Ballet Music for Albertina Rasch has been issued by Intrada on compact disc.
The newly recorded works were written by composer Dimitri Tiomkin between 1927 and 1932 and performed as ballets choreographed by Albertina Rasch for her dance troupe, the Albertina Rasch Dancers. The photograph gracing the CD booklet cover of Dimitri and Albertina, seen above, was taken in 1927, the year of their marriage.
Listen to clips and order here.
Dimitri Tiomkin was a four-time Oscar-winning film composer who wrote more than 100 film scores, notably High Noon, The Alamo, and Dial M for Murder, and while his film music is widely available through original soundtracks and re-recordings and frequently performed in symphony concerts around the world, that is not the case with his ballet music. This landmark recording therefore offers an opportunity to view composer Dimitri Tiomkin in a new light. Fans of Dimitri Tiomkin’s film music will not be disappointed with the remarkable variety of music that reveals Tiomkin’s obsession with composers from George Gershwin to Ravel.
Conductor William Stromberg leads the Slovak National Symphony Orchestra through 25 tracks on two CDs that include notable works written for the Moulin Rouge in Paris, the Hollywood Bowl, and MGM Studios. The ballet work that helped launch Tiomkin’s career as a film composer, the Mars Ballet, deserves a place in the concert and ballet repertoire. Michael Feinstein performed the Mars Ballet with the Pasadena Pops in 2017.
The recording was produced by Patrick K. Russ who compiled the original orchestrations by Ferde Grofe, Emil Gerstenberger, Herman Hand, Maurice de Packh, Edward Powell, Deems Taylor, and Hans Spialek. The Intrada release was produced by Douglass Fake and Roger Feigelson. Olivia Tiomkin attended the recording sessions.
The Dimitri Tiomkin Collection at the University of Southern California’s Cinematic Arts Library was the source of the music scores and scrapbooks in the collection offered historical context. The liner notes by Warren M. Sherk provide insight into the remarkably prolific period which resulted in a burst of original music during which Tiomkin was also appearing as a concert pianist.
At the time they were written and choreographed, many of these works were performed in New York and Los Angeles to large audiences. This recording should bring attention to a slice of the careers of Dimitri Tiomkin and Albertina Rasch that deserves renewed recognition.
Tiomkin and Rasch were attempting to create an American Ballet with these works and, in fact, they have. We hope the recording will result in concert performances and, more appropriately, newly-choreographed renditions of the works.
Intrada CD release INT 7158.