“Muti channeled that excitement into rapt, almost reverent attention with a searing performance of a dramatic work that is very close to his heart.” — Chicago Sun-Times
Riccardo Muti leads the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, men of the Chicago Symphony Chorus and bass soloist Alexey Tikhomirov in this poignant performance of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 13, Op. 113 (Babi Yar), recorded live in September 2018.
The ensemble shines throughout — from passages requiring the sheer sonic force of the first movement to the indelible moments provided by single instruments. Muti and musicians expertly navigate the intricacies of the five movements, each set to the poetry of Yevgeny Yevtushenko and expressing themes that were dear to Shostakovich — revolution and war, the individual’s role in society, idealism in the face of easy compromise, prejudice and intolerance.
Yevtushenko said, “Over people like Shostakovich death has no power. His music will sound as long as humankind exists. ... When I wrote Babi Yar, there was no monument there. Now there is a monument.”
2020 Grammy Award, Best Engineered Recording–Classical
Shostakovich Symphony No. 13 in B-flat Minor, Op. 113 (Babi Yar)
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Riccardo Muti conductor
Alexey Tikhomirov bass
Men of the Chicago Symphony Chorus
Duain Wolfe director
Recorded: September 2018, Orchestra Hall, Chicago
Released: Jan. 17, 2020