Thierry and the Utah Symphony have launched a recording cycle of works by French composer Camille Saint-Saëns on Hyperion Records. This three-volume set will be the first complete, commercial recording of the composer’s five symphonies by an American orchestra, as well as the orchestra’s first recording project with the independent British label. Volume 1 is set for a January 2019 release (available in the shops and online from 28 December) and comprises Symphony No.3 in C minor (“Organ”), featuring Paul Jacobs; “Danse Bacchanale” from Act III of the composer’s opera Samson et Dalila; and Trois tableaux symphoniques d’après La foi, based on the composer’s incidental music for a play by Eugène Brieux. Pre-orders are currently available here.
The Utah Symphony embarks on these milestone Saint-Saëns recordings having also been the first American orchestra to record the complete Mahler symphonies. Since Mr. Fischer became Music Director in 2009, he has conducted numerous symphonic cycles at Abravanel Hall, and these works by Saint-Saëns were recorded live during the 2017–18 season. Volume 1 was recorded on December 1 and 2, 2017.
Throughout his career, Mr. Fischer has been especially active as a conductor of the French repertoire—from classics by Debussy and Ravel to contemporary works by Pierre Boulez and Tristan Murail. Of his 14 previous recordings on Hyperion, over half are devoted to works by Francophone composers, including Fauré, Françaix, Honegger, d’Indy, Lalo, Martin, Poulenc, and Widor. The Saint-Saëns cycle marks his first recordings of the French repertoire with the Utah Symphony, and following this project, an all-Berlioz album with the orchestra is also planned for release on Hyperion.