As mentioned in the first release, I’m very reluctant in naming the definitive renditions of any works, but Messiaens own interpretation of the Apparition is simply amazing. His tempo is extremely slow but never dragging and his overall musical perception of the piece is so incredible grand.
Olivier Messiaen (1956) 10:05, Latry (rec. 2000) 9:45, Rudolf Innig (1996) 9:16, Jennifer Bate (1982) 10:00, Susan Landale (1986) 7:36, Thomas Trotter (1993) 9:48, Louis Thiry (1972) 8:01.
The overall timing of a piece doesn’t directly tell anything about the actual tempo (or tempi) in a piece. There are many other factors in play, just listen to the very big pauses Messiaen has between some of the sections, but the overall timing can tell us a little of the performers overall grasp of the whole piece.
Thanks again to Anders Riber for providing the transfers of these important documents. No digital noise reduction has been applied, so there is a little background hiss and click here and there.