Author Topic: Dvorak's Symphonies  (Read 18254 times)

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Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #40 on: September 17, 2007, 03:42:25 AM »
Is it? Usually, the slow Bernstein is about as interesting as the fat Elvis.

Great quip; laugh-out-loud funny, Thomas. But of course there's not a bit of truth in it. Slow Bernstein is extraordinarily interesting; unique interpretations of Sibelius, Dvorak, Elgar, Tchaikovsky, Brahms. I love the way he re-thought these composer's music in his DG re-makes.

Sarge
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Mark

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #41 on: September 17, 2007, 03:51:15 AM »
Great quip; laugh-out-loud funny, Thomas. But of course there's not a bit of truth in it. Slow Bernstein is extraordinarily interesting; unique interpretations of Sibelius ...

Not heard Lenny's DG Sibelius, but his Sony cycle sucked ... apart from the Second and Seventh Symphonies, IIRC. His take on the Third in particular made me want to bitch-slap the Pope.

George

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #42 on: September 17, 2007, 06:24:12 AM »
Great quip; laugh-out-loud funny, Thomas. But of course there's not a bit of truth in it. Slow Bernstein is extraordinarily interesting; unique interpretations of Sibelius, Dvorak, Elgar, Tchaikovsky, Brahms. I love the way he re-thought these composer's music in his DG re-makes.

Sarge

Indeed, see the DG recording of the Pathetique symphony for an example.  $:)

dtwilbanks

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #43 on: September 17, 2007, 06:29:22 AM »
I agree with Larry Rinkel  .....  the Kersetz set has been a reference for years and it is well recorded.      I find it extremely good and I am very happy with it, although I have not heard other versions .....

I'm in the same boat.

[Edit: Well, I *do* have Reiner doing the 9th]
« Last Edit: September 17, 2007, 06:35:46 AM by dtwilbanks »

Offline Lethevich

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #44 on: September 17, 2007, 09:36:31 AM »
Is it?

Hehehe!... I checked the length of the LSO Live Davis 7th after he mentioned the Bernstein playtime. Despite me finding Davis suffocatingly slow, the Bernstein is a further 1 minute longer. Horror :)
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Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #45 on: September 18, 2007, 04:06:11 AM »
Not heard Lenny's DG Sibelius, but his Sony cycle sucked ...

Mark, I believe we have never agreed on the merits of a single recording in all the time we've known each other. Based on that I'd suggest you steer clear of late Lenny.

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #46 on: September 18, 2007, 04:21:19 AM »
Don't let anyone recommend you the Kertesz box set, there is a lot better out there.

What's wrong with it?

I dislike the sound quality. Sounds harsh to me. Kertesz tempi tend to be on the fast side, which I abhor, and his conducting is too metronomic, failing to linger when I want the music stretched out a bit. I vastly prefer Rowicki, Suitner and Kubelik's complete cycles. In my opinion Rowicki rules in numbers 1 through 4 and his tone poems, especially Othello, are superb too. Other conductors I like in this music: Szell, Bernstein, Davis, Dohnányi.

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Offline Sergeant Rock

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #47 on: September 18, 2007, 04:40:46 AM »
Hehehe!... I checked the length of the LSO Live Davis 7th after he mentioned the Bernstein playtime. Despite me finding Davis suffocatingly slow, the Bernstein is a further 1 minute longer. Horror :)

There are drugs that will cure your ADD, you know. They will allow you to chill and not feel fidgety and suffocated when listening to music a few minutes slower than the norm  ;D

The Davis is one of my favorite versions, perhaps my favorite. I love his tempos which make this symphony sound, even more than usual, like it's part of the German symphonic tradition (very Brahmsian). Davis also brings out the epic/tragic elements (for this is a tragic symphony, one of the very few) better than almost anyone.

Sarge
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

Hector

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #48 on: September 18, 2007, 06:16:02 AM »
There are drugs that will cure your ADD, you know. They will allow you to chill and not feel fidgety and suffocated when listening to music a few minutes slower than the norm  ;D

The Davis is one of my favorite versions, perhaps my favorite. I love his tempos which make this symphony sound, even more than usual, like it's part of the German symphonic tradition (very Brahmsian). Davis also brings out the epic/tragic elements (for this is a tragic symphony, one of the very few) better than almost anyone.

Sarge

Strange that you like one of the best versions for the wrong reasons. Never mind, good on yer, I say.

But you do like things taken inordinately slow. No harm in that, however, except where it seriously damages the music and, unfortunately, many of Bernstein's later DG recordings did just that.

I was listening 'blind' to the 'Enigma' vars a couple of months ago and it was a fine performance up until, that is, 'Nimrod' and I knew, instantly, it could only be Bernstein. Ruined. Everything after that was of no or little interest.

Many conductors self-indulged at this point, Barbirolli for one, but not to this extent. It is obscene!

That is why Boult's EMI version will forever remain the preferred version and benchmark for this work, as will his  recent Lyrita reissue of Elgar's two symphonies.

However, as I have said already, nothing wrong with a bit of wallowing on occasion as long as it doesn't become a habit, a-y,  S-a-r-g-e...? ;D

Offline sound67

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #49 on: September 18, 2007, 10:49:58 AM »
Some composers respond better to an as-slowly-as-possible approach than others. Dvorák is not a composer whose music can survive excessively slow tempi. e.g. in Bernstein's DG New World, the second movement almost grinds to a halt and the effect, bearing in mind the comparative slightness of the material, is deadening.

Thomas
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Offline Lethevich

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #50 on: September 18, 2007, 11:15:11 AM »
There are drugs that will cure your ADD, you know. They will allow you to chill and not feel fidgety and suffocated when listening to music a few minutes slower than the norm  ;D

The Davis is one of my favorite versions, perhaps my favorite. I love his tempos which make this symphony sound, even more than usual, like it's part of the German symphonic tradition (very Brahmsian). Davis also brings out the epic/tragic elements (for this is a tragic symphony, one of the very few) better than almost anyone.

Sarge

:D To be fair, I enjoyed the Davis recording when it was the only that I had - but then Neumann kind of blew it away. At first I found his tempo in the adagio (especially in the big theme towards the middle) bewilderingly fast, but it really grew on me. The clarity that isn't offered by (specifically the LSO Live recording) the Davis was also a bit of a revelation.
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

longears

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #51 on: September 18, 2007, 03:05:11 PM »
Not heard Lenny's DG Sibelius, but his Sony cycle sucked ... apart from the Second and Seventh Symphonies, IIRC. His take on the Third in particular made me want to bitch-slap the Pope.
Eh?  You must be joshing!  His NYPO cycle is one of the greats.

Oh.  Wait a minute.  Are we talking about Dvorak?  I think you guys (and his excellent Mahler cycle) have finally convinced me to pick up Kubelik's set.

Offline JoshLilly

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #52 on: September 18, 2007, 03:40:14 PM »
Leave me out of this.

Offline Amicus

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #53 on: September 24, 2007, 02:46:24 PM »
For Dvorak 7th, Paita and the Philharmonia is the most exciting,  vibrant recording I've heard (of dozens). Not available anymore except from www.musicabona.com (czech classical music site)
In the 8th Kertesz or Fischer and the Budapest
In the 9th Fischer in superb modern sound(though Kubelik and Masur & NYPO are very good also)

Lilas Pastia

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #54 on: September 24, 2007, 03:14:38 PM »
Yes, Paďta rocks. Actually, he rocked in everything he recorded (on his own label), which gave him quite a bad name when he was active. Tut-tut and sneers from the musical and critical establishment... ::)

Offline jwinter

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #55 on: August 17, 2008, 01:01:46 PM »
Any updated thoughts on Dvorak symphony sets?  I have complete sets from Kubelik and Suitner, and 7-9s from Mackerras, Szell, Davis, & Giulini. 

I was thinking of adding a third set.  One of the Neumanns?  The famous Kertesz?
The man that hath no music in himself,
Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds,
Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils.
The motions of his spirit are dull as night,
And his affections dark as Erebus.
Let no such man be trusted.

-- William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

Offline Bogey

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #56 on: August 17, 2008, 01:09:13 PM »
Any updated thoughts on Dvorak symphony sets?  I have complete sets from Kubelik and Suitner, and 7-9s from Mackerras, Szell, Davis, & Giulini. 

I was thinking of adding a third set.  One of the Neumanns?  The famous Kertesz?

If you are happy with your 9th, then this may be a new avenue for you, JW:

There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

Mark

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #57 on: August 17, 2008, 02:29:25 PM »


As recommended to me by Brian, and a terrific cycle indeed. :)

Offline Bogey

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #58 on: August 17, 2008, 02:40:37 PM »
As recommended to me by Brian, and a terrific cycle indeed. :)

I believe my source as well Mark.  :)
There will never be another era like the Golden Age of Hollywood.  We didn't know how to blow up buildings then so we had no choice but to tell great stories with great characters.-Ben Mankiewicz

hornteacher

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Re: Dvorak's Symphonies
« Reply #59 on: August 17, 2008, 03:23:36 PM »


I second (third?) this cycle.  I've had it for a year or so and love it.  It is the best recordings of Symphonies 1-6 I've heard.  7-9 is marvellous if not quite up to Mackerras' recordings.

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