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"I truly admire this orchestra and hope it becomes better known abroad," confided Leonard Bernstein in 1989 to the audience in Rome's Auditorio Pio before his concert of works by Claude Debussy (1862-1918) with the prestigious "Orchestra dell'Accademia di Santa Cecilia." In the words of Rome's "Il Giornale," Bernstein served up a "Debussy that is neither ethereal nor shapeless, but uncommonly vital, caught in the full light of noon." The concert begins with "Images," Debussy's last orchestral work and one of his most colorful scores. It consists of three separate pieces: the rather doleful "Gigues," the "Rondes de printemps," which incorporates a French nursery tune, and "Ibéria," a vibrant homage to Spain, complete with tambourines and castanets.

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