Author Topic: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.  (Read 13410 times)

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Offline mjwal

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #40 on: April 17, 2013, 09:01:24 AM »
This CD contains IMHO a great atmospheric performance of Tapiola with Eduard van Beinum conducting the Concertgebouw of Amsterdam, recorded in 1953 - a wonderfully brooding performance. In fact this is a great double CD set from the Australian Eloquence label as it also restores my favourite recorded performance of the Four Legends with Thomas Jensen conducting the DanishRSO.
I'd strongly recommend this to admirers of Sibelius notwithstanding the bizarre cover photo of Eduard van Beinum which looks like he has a hot potato in his mouth. I could not find the CD on UK Amazon but it is on the American Amazon site.

I can't get the photo to load up but here is the link:

http://www.amazon.com/Sibelius-Violin-Concerto-Orchestral-Works/dp/B000VT6P7M/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1365775593&sr=8-4&keywords=sibelius+van+beinum

I read an account of Arnold Bax listening to a performance of 'Tapiola' with tears streaming down his face. It remains my favourite work by Sibelius.

I've read great things of this van Beinum recording all over the place: good to see that confirmed by you. I shall certainly.be getting this. Up to now my favourite recordings of Tapiola have been - in ascending order: Beecham/RPO (EMI), Ormandy/Philadelphia (RCA), and Garaguly/Berlin RSO (Berlin). The worst I know are tied: Karajan/BPO (DG - the longest and dullest) and Berglund/Helsinki (EMI - the shortest and most cursory in its non-affect). This work needs a halfway decent recording, so the Kajanus (in the transfer I have - there may be better) doesn't come into the reckoning fo me. I would have been quite happy with the Beecham (had it for a long time) if I hadn't picked up the Garaguly (with symphonies 1, 2 and 5), which is something really rather special: true to his Hungarian origin, the conductor makes it sound Bartokian in places, but this also has an immense raw icy power that forces you to revalue the piece; it made me understand those who rate the work above the symphonies. The Ormandy is also superb, less icy and harsh, more gloomy and eldritch to my ears. What these two conductors do supremely is to offer a many-sided work, with all its weird lulls and louring outbursts, which holds your awed attention from beginning to end, compelling attention - some thing that the Karajan, one of the worst performances by a conductor of renown I have ever heard, does not even begin to do.
The Violin's Obstinacy

It needs to return to this one note,
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but the sound of self it must depart from,
a journey lengthily to go
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Peter Porter

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #41 on: April 17, 2013, 12:24:58 PM »
I've read great things of this van Beinum recording all over the place: good to see that confirmed by you. I shall certainly.be getting this. Up to now my favourite recordings of Tapiola have been - in ascending order: Beecham/RPO (EMI), Ormandy/Philadelphia (RCA), and Garaguly/Berlin RSO (Berlin). The worst I know are tied: Karajan/BPO (DG - the longest and dullest) and Berglund/Helsinki (EMI - the shortest and most cursory in its non-affect). This work needs a halfway decent recording, so the Kajanus (in the transfer I have - there may be better) doesn't come into the reckoning fo me. I would have been quite happy with the Beecham (had it for a long time) if I hadn't picked up the Garaguly (with symphonies 1, 2 and 5), which is something really rather special: true to his Hungarian origin, the conductor makes it sound Bartokian in places, but this also has an immense raw icy power that forces you to revalue the piece; it made me understand those who rate the work above the symphonies. The Ormandy is also superb, less icy and harsh, more gloomy and eldritch to my ears. What these two conductors do supremely is to offer a many-sided work, with all its weird lulls and louring outbursts, which holds your awed attention from beginning to end, compelling attention - some thing that the Karajan, one of the worst performances by a conductor of renown I have ever heard, does not even begin to do.

Thank you for your interesting response. I must look out for the Garaguly. I just obtained the Kajanus reissue on Naxos which has great atmosphere. I like the Berglund Bournemouth version which is understated but affecting.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #42 on: April 17, 2013, 12:36:10 PM »
One of the newer Tapiola performances I've enjoyed is this one:



Kamu is a great Sibelian.
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Offline Octave

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #43 on: April 17, 2013, 01:22:32 PM »
If anyone has a handy link to an available copy of that Garaguly on Berlin Classics, please share; I did some hunting but only turned up one apparently-totally-unavailable (at a few Amazons) disc with Symphs 1/5/7/Tapiola: ASIN B000068V3O.

Also this OOP disc, which can be had used, very expensively:



Maybe there's a badly-tagged edition that's eluding me...
« Last Edit: April 17, 2013, 01:25:10 PM by Octave »
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #44 on: April 17, 2013, 02:42:24 PM »
Another one of my favorite Tapiola performances is Segerstam with the Helsinki PO on Ondine.
ā€œI really would like to go to Marmorkirken. It was there that I heard music for the first time, and that experience is like a heavenly vision for me.ā€ - Rued Langgaard

Offline mjwal

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #45 on: April 18, 2013, 08:31:27 AM »
If anyone has a handy link to an available copy of that Garaguly on Berlin Classics, please share; I did some hunting but only turned up one apparently-totally-unavailable (at a few Amazons) disc with Symphs 1/5/7/Tapiola: ASIN B000068V3O.

Also this OOP disc, which can be had used, very expensively:



Maybe there's a badly-tagged edition that's eluding me...
Sadly this set of 3 symphonies & Tapiola is either unavailable or very expensive on various Amazons - I bought it  for a few Euros only a couple of years ago; it seems to have become a rarity - but I see this website is offering it not too expensively:
http://www.cdandlp.com/item/2/0-1401-0-1-0/115012307/carl-von-garaguly-sibelius-symphonies-nos-1-2-et-7-tapiola.html
But I can't believe Berlin Classics won't reissue this sometime soon. If I knew how to upload music for free I'd do it  :)
The Violin's Obstinacy

It needs to return to this one note,
not a tune and not a key
but the sound of self it must depart from,
a journey lengthily to go
in a vein it knows will cripple it.
...
Peter Porter

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #46 on: April 19, 2013, 02:19:53 AM »
If anyone has a handy link to an available copy of that Garaguly on Berlin Classics, please share; I did some hunting but only turned up one apparently-totally-unavailable (at a few Amazons) disc with Symphs 1/5/7/Tapiola: ASIN B000068V3O.

Also this OOP disc, which can be had used, very expensively:



Maybe there's a badly-tagged edition that's eluding me...

Actually I find that I do have this excellent performance on a different label. Also picked up cheaply a while back.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #47 on: April 19, 2013, 02:20:16 AM »
One of the newer Tapiola performances I've enjoyed is this one:



Kamu is a great Sibelian.

Me too.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Octave

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #48 on: April 19, 2013, 02:36:12 AM »
Thanks mjwal, I'll keep an eye out for it, and/or just get used to this predicament.
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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #49 on: April 19, 2013, 08:29:30 PM »
Another one of my favorite Tapiola performances is Segerstam with the Helsinki PO on Ondine.

Yes - with 'Four Legends' - a great disc. I was listening to Beecham's 1946 recording yesterday (on an old Dutton CD). I enjoyed it enormously. It was not quite as intense as the Garaguly version but just as gripping and deeply felt. I think that Tapiola lends itself to different approaches.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #50 on: October 23, 2014, 01:09:36 PM »
Am greatly enjoying Colin Davis's recording with the Boston SO on Philips - one of the best I think for its great brooding atmosphere right from the start.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #51 on: May 10, 2015, 11:16:16 AM »
Have been enjoying the Koussevitsky which is incredibly powerful despite its age and the LSO version with Tauno Hannikainen on Everest.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #52 on: February 15, 2018, 11:51:15 PM »
Any new favourites here? I was enjoying Blomstedt's recording with the San Francisco SO yesterday in the car.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #53 on: February 16, 2018, 12:43:48 AM »
This is the first recording of the piece I heard, and I still regard it as a superb, with a very intense performance of the blizzard scene.



Released in 1984.

Offline Jo498

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #54 on: February 16, 2018, 01:49:58 AM »
So does mjwal in #40 refer to the 1980s or 1960s Karajan recording? There is another one on EMI.
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Offline Biffo

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #55 on: February 16, 2018, 01:52:54 AM »
Vanska conducting the Lahti Symphony Orchestra - it comes coupled with superb accounts of the 6th & 7th Symphonies - an outstanding disc.

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #56 on: February 16, 2018, 05:18:44 AM »
This is the first recording of the piece I heard, and I still regard it as a superb, with a very intense performance of the blizzard scene.



Released in 1984.

I agree - that is a great and classic performance and I love the cover image as well.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #57 on: February 16, 2018, 05:20:09 AM »
Vanska conducting the Lahti Symphony Orchestra - it comes coupled with superb accounts of the 6th & 7th Symphonies - an outstanding disc.

Very much agree - an excellent disc in all respects - also good cover art of those Northern forests:

« Last Edit: February 16, 2018, 05:22:04 AM by vandermolen »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #58 on: February 16, 2018, 05:27:52 AM »
My current favourite:

"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
« Reply #59 on: February 16, 2018, 05:30:52 AM »
So does mjwal in #40 refer to the 1980s or 1960s Karajan recording? There is another one on EMI.
The DGG one posted above is from the 1980s I think.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).