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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 19 november 2021 | NoMadMusic

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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 5 november 2021 | Cleveland Orchestra

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Two live recordings from Cleveland and Miami. The Schnittke Concerto for Piano and Strings was recorded in Cleveland’s Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Concert Hall at Severance in October 2020. It features pianist Yefim Bronfman with the Orchestra’s strings. Prokofiev’s Second Symphony was recorded in January 2020 on tour in Miami, in Knight Concert Hall and features full orchestra ensemble in this work inspired by the early 20th century’s fascination with mechanics and industry. Thoughts from Franz-Welser-Möst, Music Director of The Cleveland Orchestra: "This is a side of Prokofiev that I didn't know until I discovered this piece. He wrote it in Paris, but deep down, he was carrying his Russian soul — though he was struggling with the political establishment at that time. The symphony was written in the Roaring Twenties, but somehow predicts World War Two, and you can hear the war machine stirring in its mechanical motifs". "Schnittke, in the years after World War Two, was also suffering from the legacy of Russia’s communist regime. And I think that both composers were so grounded and bound to Russian soil that they could not deny that that spirit in their music. You can hear that they are inspired by the same history, the same tradition, and the same heart". © The Cleveland Orchestra
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 24 september 2021 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

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These readings of symphonies by African-American composer Florence Beatrice Price originated as a pandemic-time online digital concert, but Philadelphia Orchestra conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin promises a full exploration of Price's orchestral output. Such a thing is certainly welcome, for although Price was the first Black woman to have a work performed by a major symphony orchestra, her music has been only sparsely recorded. That "first" was the Symphony No. 1 in E minor heard here, played by the Chicago Symphony under Frederick Stock in 1933, and it is all the more remarkable in that it was Price's first orchestral work of any kind. Her model is Dvořák, with African-American materials sprinkled through the music beyond simply Dvořák's basic pentatonic tunes. These vary in their level of success; the "Juba" movements in each symphony render Black music through a white filter, and Nézet-Séguin can't do much with them. The slow movements, however, are something else again. They have Dvořák's lyrical mood, but they are entirely original in structure, especially that of the Symphony No. 1; Nézet-Séguin and the Philadelphians catch some lovely harmonic junctures there, more accurately than the few other groups that have recorded this music. One awaits more of Price from these forces, especially the Symphony No. 4, to these ears, the strongest of Price's symphonic output. © TiVo
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 3 september 2021 | London Philharmonic Orchestra

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Munich, September 1910. A tidalwave is flooding the world of music. Mahler's Symphony No. 8 in E-flat major has just premiered, conducted by the composer himself. This monumental symphony was a triumph in terms of its duration and the number of performers involved. Mahler's impresario, Emil Gutmann, used the term "Symphony of a Thousand" for promotional purposes, much to the composer's displeasure. It was an inspired turn of phrase though, which has persisted to the present day.The two-part work uses two forms of writing which differ in every respect: the Veni Creator Spiritus, a ninth-century Latin poem probably written by the monk Raban Maur, and the ending of Goethe's Faust. However, an impression of great coherence emerges from the whole: the two texts each evoke ideas of transcendence, but an incarnate, earthly transcendence, accessible to Man.This production brings together the London Philharmonic with three impressively uniform vocal ensembles (the London Symphony Chorus, the Clare College - Cambridge Choir and the Tiffin Boy's Choir). © Pierre Lamy/Qobuz
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 3 september 2021 | harmonia mundi

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After two recordings devoted to Mahler’s Third and Fifth symphonies, François-Xavier Roth continues his exploration of the major works premiered by the Gürzenich Orchestra. In the spotlight this time are two of the young Richard Strauss’s most brilliant achievements: Till Eulenspiegel and Don Quixote. In the latter, a symphonic poem in the guise of a double concerto, Jean-Guihen Queyras and Tabea Zimmermann form a picaresque duo playing the Knight of the Doleful Countenance and his squire Sancho Panza. © harmonia mundi
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 1 juli 2021 | Chandos

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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 25 juni 2021 | Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra

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In a volcanic outburst of creativity, the 27-year-old Gustav Mahler wrote his First Symphony within just a few weeks. He then struggled significantly longer to find a definitive shape for this unprecedentedly novel work, which shook the musical public like an earthquake and divided heated tempers into Mahler lovers and Mahler loathers. No one was left cold by the overpowering sound of this work he initially entitled Titan (after Jean Paul’s novel). It begins as a quivering surface (“Wie ein Naturlaut” – “Like a sound of nature”) out of which motivic ideas emerge – fanfare and birdcall fragments from near and far, including an obstinate cuckoo – until a melody is articulated, derived from the Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (Songs of a Wayfarer), where it is sung to the words “Ging heut Morgen übers Feld…Wird’s nicht eine schöne Welt?” (“This morning I went across the fields…Isn’t the world looking lovely?”). In programmatic indications that he later withdrew, Mahler describes the movement as “the awakening of Nature after a long winter’s sleep”. The earthy ländler-scherzo is followed by a whimsical funeral-march parody based on a minor-mode version of the folksong canon Bruder Jakob (Frère Jacques). Naïve humour and obscure tragedy clash very much as in Jean Paul’s writings. The “horrifying outcry” that launches the finale definitively exposes the “lovely world’s” ambiguity. The violence of this last movement tears open a roaring abyss. According to Mahler, in the tumultuous masses of sound the “hero” – is it the composer himself? – is locked in a terrible battle “with all the sorrows of this world”. Then, almost imperceptibly, out of a reminiscence of the shimmering sounds of nature that began the symphony, a “victory chorale” takes shape and, with the mobilization of all forces, is elevated into a gigantic apotheosis. Mahler’s First: a hero’s life – or indeed a commedia humana? © 2020 Berlin Phil Media GmbH
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 18 juni 2021 | CAvi-music

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Tempo, accentuation, phrasing, or structural architecture are not the first thing that strikes the listener when he listens to Arthur Schoonderwoerd’s performances of classical orchestral music for the first time. Instead, the first thing we can notice is that the music sounds different. The orchestra is unusually small. You might want to judge whether this is good or not, but that will not truly help you deal with the phenomenon in itself. Apart from the winds – in the usual line-up as called for in the score – the string section is barely larger than a string quartet. It is pointless to dispute whether this is preferable to a large orchestra. More significant is the striking effect this has on the senses. If you want to do justice to Schoonderwoerd’s interpretation concept, it is best to start by focusing on what you are hearing. © CAvi-Music
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 1 juni 2021 | Chandos

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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 28 mei 2021 | harmonia mundi

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Vivid testimony to the multifaceted partnership of James Gaffigan and the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, their latest release invites us to explore the conductor’s American roots, from the most mischievous (Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story) to the spiritual (Charles Ives’ Symphony No. 3, based on his works for solo organ). With dramatically potent dissonances, Ruth Crawford’s Andante for Strings casts a spell in the form of a hypnotic and restless nocturne, while Samuel Barber’s boldly athletic Toccata for Organ and Orchestra reveals a rarely heard aspect of this well-known master. An electrifying performance! © harmonia mundi
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 21 mei 2021 | Aparté

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Concentus Musicus Wien continues its exploration of works of the Classical and pre-Romantic periods as envisioned by Nikolaus Harnoncourt. Stefan Gottfried conducts Schubert’s Symphony No. 5, written in 1816 at the age of 19, and the seventh of Haydn’s 12 London symphonies, No. 99, written in 1793. The former shows the melodic inventiveness and admirable mastery of form of a young composer, heir to the giant Haydn. Recorded live at the famous Musikverein in Vienna, this concert immortalises yet again the skill and the exceptional sound quality of this renowned progenitor of historically informed performance, which continues to perpetuate the work of its visionary founder. © Aparté
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 23 april 2021 | LSO Live

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Sir Antonio Pappano leads the London Symphony Orchestra in a pair of symphonies by Ralph Vaughan Williams that span the build-up and aftermath of the Second World War. Throughout the Fourth Symphony Vaughan Williams channels tension and power through the music in amongst moments of light and clarity. It evokes a sense of hardship and persistence, perhaps suggesting the ever-present threat of war in the 1930s. Written in 1947, the composer's Sixth Symphony also seems to reflect the hardships and devastation wrought by World War II. Melancholic in some movements, ferocious in others. © LSO Live
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 26 maart 2021 | harmonia mundi

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“An artistic manifesto for the sovereign imagination of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach” is how Gli Incogniti's inspirational violinist-director Amandine Beyer and violone player Baldomero Barciela describe C. P. E. Bach's six Hamburg symphonies in their forward to this programme recorded in the clean, softly supportive acoustic of Arras theatre; and that summation is spot on. This was a set commissioned in 1773 by Baron van Swieten, an Austrian nobleman of Dutch decent who also financially supported Haydn and Beethoven. An unusually enlightened and musically curious character, Van Swieten accompanied this particular commission with the explicit specification that “no consideration of the difficulties that the performers might experience” should limit Bach's imagination. In other words, in an era during which a composer mostly had to write to the tastes and technical skills of either their wealthy employer or the sheet-music-buying public, C. P. E. Bach was instead given artistic carte blanche to compose exactly the music in his head. The result was a startlingly, fiercely individual and stormy language over which both players and listeners are being thrown a fresh musical curveball every five seconds, whether that's a new succession of extraordinary harmonic modulations, sudden pauses or changes of melodic direction, lightening-fast ensemble passagework, or close juxtaposition of strongly contrasting dynamics or styles. Who knows how the first performances sounded, because all of this would have stretched the ensemble technique and overall musical accomplishment of the day to its limits, and even today still constitutes a finger and brain-twisting challenge. Not that it sounds as though Gli incogniti are being unduly stretched here. Au contraire, they're tossing off even the most virtuosic moments of ensemble writing with cleanly articulated lightness, bounce and precision, with the sharp dynamic contrasts leaping out at you while never feeling uncomfortably exaggerated, and all with an infectiously joyous energy. It's not just in the quicksilver passagework where they shine either. Listen in No. 4 in B minor to the way their central Larghetto ed innocentemente breathes, and its cleverly balanced tension between tender legato courtliness and sudden sombre, angular explosions. Or, if you want to admire both their tone and its capturing, head to the weighted silence of No. 2 in B-flat's central slow movement, to hear the soft, plump roundness of the bass pizzicato sitting against the luminous violins. Further musicological interest comes from Beyer and her team having also thrown in the earlier Symphony in E minor, Wq. 177, which certainly sounds less adventurous than the Hamburg six, but also like an entirely different and wilder beast to Haydn's “Sturm and Drang” symphonies which were being written at the same time – definitive proof that C. P. E. Bach was off on his own path right from the get-go. One further point to make is that, while it's probably fair to say that these intense works are generally best enjoyed just one or two at a time, the delicacy and vim of these readings make them stand up unusually well to listening from start to finish. © Charlotte Gardner/Qobuz
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 19 maart 2021 | LSO Live

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One of Rachmaninoff’s most popular pieces, the Second Symphony is an indulgently melancholic and sentimental work: a magic box of the late-Romantic orchestra. Dramatic sections played by the full orchestra contrast heart-breaking swells that only this composer could have written. The LSO has a long history with the Second Symphony, recording it many times with conductors such as André Previn, Gennady Rozhdestvensky and Valery Gergiev. For this recording, which was captured during the opening of the London Symphony Orchestra's 2019/20 season at the Barbican Hall, Sir Simon Rattle conducted from memory, performing the uncut version of this symphonic treasure. © LSO Live
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 1 februari 2021 | Chandos

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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 1 november 2020 | Chandos

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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 1 november 2020 | Chandos

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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 23 oktober 2020 | LSO Live

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François-Xavier Roth, Principal Guest Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, displays his deep affinity with the music of Debussy and Ravel on his latest LSO Live album. A fascination with his Spanish heritage would be a recurring theme in many of Ravel's creations. Mysterious melodies weave delicately throughout his early work Rapsodie espagnole, punctuated by bursts of Spanish-inspired fanfares and Habanera dance rhythms. The voluptuous flute opening of the Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune immediately conjures a world of luxurious fantasy, weaving through the music's changing scenes with effortless spontaneity. Every instrument adds something unique, and the whole work appears to float free of form and convention. In La mer, Debussy tells the story of the eternal odyssey of the ocean. He sails through storm and calm, wind and rain, in music that rises and falls with the rhythms of the sea. The score is so vivid that you can almost smell sea salt and see the crests of the waves. © LSO Live
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 2 oktober 2020 | Cleveland Orchestra

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This new album is the second release from the conductor Franz Welser-Möst and his Cleveland Orchestra on Welser-Möst’s own label. It also marks their final performances before their entire tour around Europe and the UAE was cancelled due to coronavirus. This recording took place on March 12, 2020 in front of a few donors and staff members under Ohio’s strict state rules. This feeling permeates Franz Welser-Möst’s rendition of Andante con moto from Schubert’s 9th Symphony and it sounds as though the conductor is conscious of the fact that this would the last time he would be conducting his orchestra for a while. This gives the calm, quiet work a very personal twist. The album also includes a work by Ernst Krenek commissioned for the Swiss patron Paul Sacher in 1972. Static and Extatic consists of ten short movements for chamber orchestra, percussion and piano. They are like musical haikus, each one lasting between one and three minutes. They are written in a serial style and present a retrospective of Ernst Krenek’s compositional technique that he developed throughout his long career. The resulting atmosphere is unexpected, enchanting and truly poetic. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Symfonieën - Verschenen op 1 oktober 2020 | Chandos

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