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Philadelphia Orchestra|Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5 - The Seasons

Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5 - The Seasons

Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky

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It is no slight to Christoph Eschenbach the conductor that his performance here of Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony is a lesser achievement than Christoph Eschenbach the pianist's performance here of the first half of Tchaikovsky's The Seasons. Eschenbach the conductor is a superb director. He knows how to mold a phrase, how to sculpt a sonority, how to shape a climax and how to bind a movement of disparate parts into a single organic whole. Eschenbach the conductor is likewise a convincing interpreter. He knows that while Tchaikovsky's Fifth may not be in the same aesthetic league as, say, Beethoven's Fifth, it is still a worthy symphony in its own way with its own melodic charms, its own blazing colors, and its own highly histrionic dramatic style. Nor is it a slight to the Philadelphia Orchestra, which plays with more passion, more power, and just as much polish for Eschenbach than it ever did for Wolfgang Sawallisch and Riccardo Muti, its two previous music directors. But Eschenbach was a pianist -- and a superlative pianist -- long before he took up the baton, and his playing here is wonderfully nuanced, warmly shaded, and completely enthralling, making more of these salon pieces than nearly any previous pianist. So while there have been many performances of Tchaikovsky's Fifth to equal or surpass Eschenbach's -- one thinks immediately of Yevgeny Mravinsky's soul-searing performance with the razor-sharp Leningrad Philharmonic -- there has never been a performance of the first half of Tchaikovsky's The Seasons to equal Eschenbach's except Sviatoslav Richter's -- and Richter, being the idiosyncratic individualist that he was, never recorded all of The Seasons. In either work, Ondine's super audio sound is rich, deep, and full.
© TiVo

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Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5 - The Seasons

Philadelphia Orchestra

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Symphony No. 5 in E Minor, Op. 64, TH 29 (Pyotr Illitch Tchaïkovski)

1
I. Andante - Allegro con anima
Philadelphia Orchestra
00:16:20

Philadelphia Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Conductor

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

2
II. Andante cantabile con alcuna licenza
Philadelphia Orchestra
00:15:36

Philadelphia Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Conductor

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

3
III. Valse: Allegro moderato
Philadelphia Orchestra
00:06:00

Philadelphia Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Conductor

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

4
IV. Finale: Andante maestoso - Allegro vivace
Philadelphia Orchestra
00:12:31

Philadelphia Orchestra, Orchestra, MainArtist - Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Conductor

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

The Seasons, Op. 37a, TH 135 (Pyotr Illitch Tchaïkovski)

5
I. January: At the Fireside
Christoph Eschenbach
00:05:25

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

6
II. February: Carnival
Christoph Eschenbach
00:02:46

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

7
III. March: Song of the Lark
Christoph Eschenbach
00:02:42

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

8
IV. April: Snowdrop
Christoph Eschenbach
00:04:01

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

9
V. May: Starlight Nights
Christoph Eschenbach
00:04:26

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

10
VI. June: Barcarolle
Christoph Eschenbach
00:05:58

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Composer - Christoph Eschenbach, Artist, MainArtist

(C) 2006 Ondine (P) 2006 Ondine

Album review

It is no slight to Christoph Eschenbach the conductor that his performance here of Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony is a lesser achievement than Christoph Eschenbach the pianist's performance here of the first half of Tchaikovsky's The Seasons. Eschenbach the conductor is a superb director. He knows how to mold a phrase, how to sculpt a sonority, how to shape a climax and how to bind a movement of disparate parts into a single organic whole. Eschenbach the conductor is likewise a convincing interpreter. He knows that while Tchaikovsky's Fifth may not be in the same aesthetic league as, say, Beethoven's Fifth, it is still a worthy symphony in its own way with its own melodic charms, its own blazing colors, and its own highly histrionic dramatic style. Nor is it a slight to the Philadelphia Orchestra, which plays with more passion, more power, and just as much polish for Eschenbach than it ever did for Wolfgang Sawallisch and Riccardo Muti, its two previous music directors. But Eschenbach was a pianist -- and a superlative pianist -- long before he took up the baton, and his playing here is wonderfully nuanced, warmly shaded, and completely enthralling, making more of these salon pieces than nearly any previous pianist. So while there have been many performances of Tchaikovsky's Fifth to equal or surpass Eschenbach's -- one thinks immediately of Yevgeny Mravinsky's soul-searing performance with the razor-sharp Leningrad Philharmonic -- there has never been a performance of the first half of Tchaikovsky's The Seasons to equal Eschenbach's except Sviatoslav Richter's -- and Richter, being the idiosyncratic individualist that he was, never recorded all of The Seasons. In either work, Ondine's super audio sound is rich, deep, and full.
© TiVo

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