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Classical - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Record of the Month - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Hi-Res Audio
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Symphonies - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Exceptional sound - Hi-Res Audio
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Symphonies - Released May 5, 2017 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 4 étoiles de Classica
As Iván Fischer approaches the completion of his live Mahler cycle with the Budapest Festival Orchestra on Channel Classics, he unexpectedly jumps backward to one of the early symphonies, the Symphony No. 3 in D minor. Fischer is known to take his time studying scores and absorbing them thoroughly before committing to making a recording, so he appears to have waited for more than a decade for something in this work to develop and lead to a fuller understanding. The Symphony No. 3 is Mahler's longest symphony, based in part on material he had used in his song cycle Des Knaben Wunderhorn, so it is challenging in terms of balancing its unusual six-movement form and interpreting its content. That Fischer has achieved unity and clarity in his interpretation is evident in this lucid performance, which is deeply compelling for its dramatic contrasts and moving in its glorious evocation of the spiritual in nature. This 2017 audiophile release features contralto Gerhild Romberger in the somber fourth-movement setting of the "Midnight Song," taken from Friedrich Nietzche's Also sprach Zarathustra, and she is joined by the Cantemus Children's Choir and the Bavarian Radio Choir in the joyous fifth movement, which is a setting of the Wunderhorn song "Es sungen drei Engel einen süßen Gesang." Yet the purely orchestral Finale is one of Mahler's most sublime movements, and the Budapest Festival Orchestra plays with a warm radiance that brings this symphony to its inspiring conclusion.
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Hi-Res Audio
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Symphonic Music - Released October 21, 2016 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Theatre Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4F de Télérama
With one of the very best orchestras in the world, the Budapest Festival Orchestra, one of today’s most fascinating conductor, Iván Fischer, offers one of the most beautiful recent interpretations of Mendelssohn’s integral A Midsummer Night's Dream. In other words: first the Overture, the phenomenal stroke of genius of a seventeen-year-old – one can only wonder where he discovered all of these orchestral inventions, as in 1826, templates were still rare and Berlioz had yet to enter the musical scene. Afterwards, the remaining pieces were composed sixteen years later for the theatrical presentation of Shakespeare’s play with musical interludes: thirteen very diverse pieces, ranging from the fabulous Scherzo − a masterpiece of finesse and orchestral invention – to delicious singing moments, as well as a pre-Mahler funeral march (reminiscent of Frère Jacques from Mahler’s Symphony No. 1), the overly well-known wedding march, the grotesque dance, and many more. There is little doubt that this is, if not Mendelssohn’s greatest masterpiece, at least one of his absolute pinnacle works. Presented here in a truly irresistible interpretation. © SM/Qobuz
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
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Classical - Released May 20, 2015 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
Best known for performing music by modern Hungarian composers such as Bartók and Kódaly, and also for his numerous Mozart recordings in the 1990s, Iván Fischer takes a surprising turn in his repertoire by recording Mahler's Symphony No. 6 in A minor, "Tragic," with the Budapest Festival Orchestra, a bold undertaking for any maestro, but one for which he is well-prepared. Fischer has performed Mahler live on many occasions, and has devoted considerable time to studying the music before committing an interpretation to disc, so his 2005 Channel Classics release cannot be called careless or hastily planned. This symphony may not be as difficult to interpret and perform as are others of Mahler's gargantuan essays, but because expectations are high among devotees, Fischer has a tough job pleasing the cognoscenti. (Curiously, many obsessive Mahlerians have a marked preference for this work, possibly because it is the most coherent and powerful of the purely instrumental symphonies. Fischer's performance can be enjoyed as one of the best sounding to come along in years -- the nuances in the brass and percussion are especially marvelous -- and it can be taken as one of the most reasoned and thoughtful interpretations as well. Fischer aims for clarity and balance, and gets a transparent reading from the BFO that reveals every note. Yet a real feeling for Mahler's exaggerated emotional world seems to be lacking, and when the music should be wildly hysterical, appallingly grotesque, and running headlong toward catastrophe, Fischer's version keeps safely back from the edge of the abyss, dusts itself off, and reminds us that it is, after all, only a symphony, not the end of the world. Alas, the great recordings of the Symphony No. 6 actually do sound like the end of the world, and can almost create physical sensations of heartache and terror. This recording, however well it sounds and despite its many interesting features, has no such power, and is much less gripping than it should have been.
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
Gioachino Rossini is most readily associated with opera overtures than opera -- to whom he was a major contributor -- and to some extent with sacred choral music and piano literature. Perhaps least of all he is recognized as a composer of instrumental and chamber music; while he did not produce an inconsiderable amount in these areas, much of his symphonies, concertante-styled works, and chamber music is early and simply cannot keep their pride of place in comparison with his far mightier operas. Nevertheless, Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra have found much to admire in this neglected area of Rossini's efforts, and have recorded the Super Audio CD Gioacchino Rossini: Instrumental Music for Channel Classics. It includes two opera overtures, from La Scala di Seta and Semiramide, the first of his six String Sonatas in G major, two sets of variations, and a Serenata for rather odd combinations of instruments and finally a fanfare for four horns. The recording quality is strikingly immediate and forward, and the playing crisp and very professional. However, there is a rather bland, formal, and conservative feeling to most of it; the explosive excitement that kicks the disc off with the Overture to La Scala di Seta doesn't take hold and most of the rest comes off like a set of rather polite and uninteresting set pieces. There is a little peak of interest when the Andante, e Tema con Variazioni begins, owing to soloist Ákos Ács' lovely clarinet tone and the unanimity of the wind doublings, though once the piece gets rolling the same sense of ennui returns. It is not Rossini's music that's the issue here; certainly the string sonatas have been recorded as a set numerous times, perhaps most successfully by I Musici. The problem is that while Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra achieve great precision and discipline in this music, they lack inspiration; tempi are sluggish and the sparkle one usually encounters in Rossini's music is reduced to a dull glint. While the basic idea of putting together a program of Rossini's purely instrumental compositions -- and therefore providing an alternative to the mountains of CDs devoted to his opera overtures -- is a good one, as a vehicle for that, Channel Classics' Super Audio CD Gioacchino Rossini: Instrumental Music is simply out of gas.
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Hi-Res Audio
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Classical - Released September 9, 2016 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 4 étoiles de Classica
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Symphonic Music - Released March 1, 2019 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet
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Classical - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet
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Symphonic Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

Hi-Res Booklet
Fans of Gustav Mahler's joyous Symphony No. 4 in G major will relish this buoyant performance by Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra, featuring soprano Miah Persson, for it is wholly in keeping with the light tone and merry spirit of the score and is as delightful as any other recording on the market. Along with the Second and Third symphonies, this is one of the so-called Wunderhorn symphonies because of its radiant setting of the German poem, "Das himmlische Leben" in the Finale, and because of the incorporation of related themes from Mahler's Des Knaben Wunderhorn. It expresses the youthful energy and magical sweetness of the first period in Mahler's symphonic style and is the culmination of this charming phase, before the onset of darker things in the Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh symphonies. Fischer and his musicians are in a light and playful mood, and their reading is cheerful, energetic, and irresistibly gemütlich in its warmth and happiness. Some listeners may quibble over Fischer's seemingly casual use of rubato, which in spots can seem a little too arbitrary, but on the whole this remains a well-balanced and spirited performance, and the slight changes of tempo serve to give the symphony a gentle Viennese flavor that seems indispensable. The DSD multi-channel sound on this SACD is stunning in its clarity, wide in its dimensions, and vibrant in its tone colors, so there is much to rejoice over in this sublime recording.
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Classical - Released August 28, 1997 | Decca Music Group Ltd.