Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider


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

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

REVIEW



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
Atoll
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
 

alternatively
CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS

Dmitry SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975)
Symphony No. 9 in E flat major, Op. 70 (1945) [26:43]
Symphony No. 15 in A major, Op. 141 (1971) [44:12]
Radio-Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart des SWR/Andrey Boreyko
rec. Beethovensaal, Liederhalle Stuttgart, Germany, 28-29 May 2009 (No. 9), 24-25 June 2010 (No. 15). DDD
HÄNSSLER CLASSIC CD 93.284 [71:30]

Experience Classicsonline


 
This pairing of Shostakovich symphonies has been done before. There are, after all, some superficial similarities between the two works in their contrast of the humorous with the serious or even tragic. Thus, the coupling is logical. Both symphonies have received numerous excellent recordings, so that for someone to purchase this new one it would have to offer something out of the common run. For anyone who attended the concerts from which these recordings are taken, they would provide a fine memento. However, while both symphonies receive very good performances, neither really supersedes what has gone before. Overall, Boreyko’s are straightforward interpretations, for the most part well played and recorded — especially considering they were made live — and even include the applause.
 
For the Ninth Symphony, Boreyko’s competition in digital recordings includes Neeme Järvi’s with the Scottish National Orchestra on Chandos and Vasily Petrenko’s with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic on Naxos, the latter praised in my review on this website. Boreyko’s is a good one, except for his extra “vulgarization” of the intentionally vulgar circus march in the first movement on its last appearance. Here this conductor slows down to drive the theme home one more time. No one has come near to Petrenko in the third movement Presto in speed or lightness. His account is my current favorite, though I would never want to abandon Järvi.
 
The Fifteenth Symphony is somewhat more problematic by its very enigmatic nature. Recordings have shown it to work with swift tempos or much slower ones. Tempos can vary within the symphony: Vasily Petrenko on Naxos is overall one of the longest at 48:33, but his Allegretto third movement is one of the fastest (3:53) while his finale is very slow (19:09). On the other hand, Järvi’s on DG is swifter than many (42:55), but his third movement is slower than most other accounts (4:38). In this regard, Boreyko’s tempos are more middle of the road with the exception of the first movement, which is slightly faster than Järvi’s (7:52 vs. 7:54). Like Bernard Haitink’s recording with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra on RCO Live, Boreyko’s interpretation plays down the grotesque elements in favour of a more symphonic approach. Haitink’s account, though, is superior in its orchestral execution not only to Boreyko’s version, but also to his own earlier recording with the London Philharmonic. One particular moment in Boreyko’s account near the beginning of the third movement where the strings take over from the winds is a bit messy and would no doubt have been re-recorded in the studio. The winds throughout distinguish themselves, especially the lower brass. At the same time, the big climax in the middle of the finale, while powerful enough, lacks the sheer devastation that Järvi brings to it. For my taste, I would stick with Järvi in this work.
 
The notes accompanying this full-priced CD are barely adequate. There is the usual historical background with its political implications and only a brief discussion of the works themselves. While Sebastian Urmoneit makes the usual reference in the Fifteenth Symphony to Rossini’s William Tell and Wagner’s Ring - though does not mention the Tristan motif in the strings that follows shortly in the finale - among the many quotations, he rather overstates the use of Stravinsky in the brass chorale at the beginning of the second movement and of Schoenberg in the twelve-tone cello recitative that follows. These are not direct quotes, but only stylistically similar to those composers. To my ears, the employment of the unison fifths later in the finale, remind me very much of the ones Haydn used in the introduction to the first movement of his Symphony No. 104, though I have never seen this mentioned elsewhere. Also there is a very brief quote that no one notices in the last movement of the Ninth Symphony (2:24-2:27) of the main theme from the fourth movement of Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra where Shostakovich seems to be paying Bartók back for his ridiculing the Seventh Symphony in that movement.
 
To sum up, these generally well-played and recorded performances of two wonderful symphonies would make a good souvenir for anyone attending the particular concerts. I may listen to them again on occasion, but there are better versions of each of these works including the ones I have referred to above.


  Leslie Wright
 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



 


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






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.