Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

CD REVIEW



Some items
to consider


New App by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra for iOS and Android!

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

Not available in the USA

Crotchet

 

 

Claudio Arrau (piano)
Richard STRAUSS (1864-1949)
Burleske in D minor for piano and orchestra (1885-86) [18:32] ¹
Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856)
Piano Concerto in A minor Op.54 (1835)
[30:33] ²
Carnaval Op.9 (1835) [25:05]
Claudio Arrau (piano)
Chicago Symphony Orchestra/ Désiré Defauw
rec. Orchestra Hall, Chicago, April 1946 ¹
Detroit Symphony Orchestra/Karl Krueger
rec. Masonic Temple, Detroit, December 1944 ²
Carnaval: rec. Abbey Road Studio No.3, London, April 1939
NAXOS 8.111265 [74:10]


Three expert restorations by Mark Obert-Thorn but otherwise nothing new here for the Arrau admirer. And in truth these are disappointing readings, even the much-praised 1939 Carnaval.

The Strauss Burleske was recorded with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Désiré Defauw in 1946. It can’t hold a candle to the 1932 Elly Ney reading which can be found on Biddulph. Not only is Ney faster and more rhythmically exciting but she brings a far greater quotient of characterisation to bear. Arrau’s sounds rather too staid and non-committal a performance, lacking the evocative glitter that Ney finds in it – and even though she brings splashy moments to bear they’re more than compensated for in terms of spontaneity and verve.

The Schumann concerto receives a disappointing reading. The original recording is dull, Krueger is dull, the Detroit band is dull and Arrau is dull. The recording is distant and sub-fusc and the performance is inert, stiff and ultimately unengaging. Wind solos are recessed sometimes to the point of inaudibility and the only compensation lies in Arrau’s efficient-sounding mechanism – though that’s surely not much compensation. The sense of “fancy” is also alien to the reading – this applies to the central movement in particular – and the finale is lumpen. Having just listened to a 1951 Gieseking broadcast of the work with Günter Wand in Cologne [Medici MM017-2] makes one all too aware how prosaic this Detroit affair really is.

As for the recording of Schumann’s Carnaval, made on 3-4 April 1939, I have very mixed feelings. The Préamble is very combustible with tempo extremes built in, Pierrot choppy and mannered, like a hobbled march. Arlequin by contrast is simply too fast and unstable for comfort. I liked the Valse noble but Eusebius – what was Arrau thinking of? – is indolent and woefully undercharacterised. He does seem from here on to respond rather better but there are still as many ups as there are downs. Papillons is rushed through, Chiarina over excited with hyper-rubati that simply call attention to themselves, whereas Chopin is quite beautiful. Paganini is expertly judged, not too much showing off, Promenade fine and if he uses less pedal than seems to me ideal in the final Davidsbündler movement it’s still a fine ending.

Carnaval has been transferred on Pearl GEMS0070 – a two-disc set; Marston has also reissued it in their two-disc celebration of the pianist’s pre-war recordings [Marston 52023-2]. The Pearl has the usual ration of shellac crackle; the Marston is a touch more open at the top than this Naxos but preserves more shellac hiss.

One for the Arrau collector.

Jonathan Woolf 

 

 

 


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools




Return to Review Index

Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.