Peer Gynt Suites Nos. 1 & 2, Sigurd Jorsalfar: 3 Pieces, Holberg
Suite, Piano Concerto, Lyric Pieces, Norwegian Dances.
Stephen Kovacevich ·
Emil Gilels · Sir Colin Davis · BBC Symphony Orchestra· Berliner
Philharmoniker · Herbert von Karajan
DG Panorama 469-142-2
This useful collection of popular Grieg repackages Karajan's excellently
polished digital recordings of the 'Peer Gynt' excerpts. The great Austrian
conductor finds much magic, mystery and poetry in proceedings especially
in the famous 'Death of Aase' and 'Morning' pieces. We also have his analogue
renditions of the Holberg and Sigurd Jorsalfar excerpts which match string
playing of astonishing BPO vintage with the pompous plodding of the Homage
March, striking contrasts indeed! The second disc contains a serviceable
recording of the Piano Concerto (from Philips), Emil Gilels outstanding recording
of the Lyric Pieces and Neeme Jaarvi's cloudily recorded 'Norwegian Dances'
that hail from the Estonian conductor's fine survey of complete Grieg works.
The pick of the lot from this issue must be Gilels who is fascinatingly
imaginative in all the Lyric Pieces. DG have added an interesting historical
timetable to their notes and the recordings have resurfaced as fresh as a
fiddle. Recommended to all those who wish to begin exploring Grieg's unique
brand of poetic imagery.