Orchestra Victoria now presents ballet music from Saint-Saens operas, conducted by Guillaume Tourniaire with just the right Gallic flair.
Elan, the title of the disc, says it all. This is first-rate light music, from a gypsy mazurka from Henry VIII to the celebratory Farandole that marks the defeat of the German barbarians in Les Barbares.
The 16th-century setting of Ascanio occasions a suite of 12 dances with Saint-Saëns stylishly doffing his cap to Rameau when not fashioning salon waltzes from familiar renaissance dances.
Verdict: Musicians stylishly explore the forgotten byways of a previous age. Melbourne-based Melba Records continues to astonish with the sheer courage of its catalogue.