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The Music Room => Great Recordings and Reviews => Topic started by: vandermolen on January 23, 2009, 03:19:09 AM

Title: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on January 23, 2009, 03:19:09 AM
Mine is Maazel on Decca (VPO) - storm section taken slowly - a classic interpretation.

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: MDL on January 23, 2009, 03:28:10 AM
Ashkenazy/Philharmonia on Decca. This was my first recording of the work, so of course I'm biased, and I'm open to suggestions.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: val on January 23, 2009, 05:24:26 AM
Mine is Karajan with the BPO, powerful and mysterious.

Beecham with the RPO is more dramatic, with very impressive crescendos, but doesn't give the same feeling of threatening mystery of Karajan.

Berglund, with the Bournemouth Orchestra would be my third choice.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: MDL on January 23, 2009, 06:56:23 AM
Mine is Karajan with the BPO, powerful and mysterious.

Beecham with the RPO is more dramatic, with very impressive crescendos, but doesn't give the same feeling of threatening mystery of Karajan.

Berglund, with the Bournemouth Orchestra would be my third choice.

I've got Karajan's digital recording, which I really like, coupled with Nielsen's 4th Symphony? Is that the one you mean? Actually, how many times did he record it?
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Brewski on January 23, 2009, 07:20:07 AM
Ashkenazy/Philharmonia on Decca. This was my first recording of the work, so of course I'm biased, and I'm open to suggestions.

I think the Ashkenazy is the only one I have, and it's excellent, but like MDL, I would welcome other versions.

--Bruce
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Renfield on January 23, 2009, 08:09:34 AM
I remember being impressed by Vänskä (Lahti Symphony Orchestra, BIS); but it was a while ago, and my knowledge of Tapiola is, in any affair, far from sovereign. Perhaps I'll revisit that, one of Karajan's and the Beecham, and then offer a view. :)

(I do have the Ashkenazy too, and a few others, by virtue of the various Sibelius cycles in my collection.)
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Dundonnell on January 23, 2009, 03:19:53 PM
Six versions in my collection:

Eduard van Beinum/Concergebouw Orchestra
Herbert von Karajan/Berlin PO
Paavo Berglund/Finnish Radio SO
Alexander Gibson/Scottish National Orchestra
Vladimir Ashkenazy/Philharmonia Orchestra
Osmo Vanska/Lahti SO

The Karajan and Ashkenazy are superb with Vanska not far behind :)
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: val on January 24, 2009, 02:20:08 AM
Quote
MDL
I've got Karajan's digital recording, which I really like, coupled with Nielsen's 4th Symphony? Is that the one you mean? Actually, how many times did he record it?


I meant the version recorded in 1965. The CD includes Finlandia and a very poetic version of the Violin Concerto with Christian Ferras.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Dax on January 25, 2009, 04:56:27 AM
I only have the Gibson which I thought was pretty good. But it's the only version I know. Does it really pale in comparison with Ashkenazy + Karajan?
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Drasko on January 25, 2009, 05:29:32 AM
I've got Karajan's digital recording, which I really like, coupled with Nielsen's 4th Symphony? Is that the one you mean? Actually, how many times did he record it?

At least three. Twice for DG and at least once for EMI.
Karajan's digital and Vanska would be my favorites, haven't heard Maazel.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 25, 2009, 05:52:37 AM
I own these:

Karajan (DG 1984)
Karajan (EMI)
Maazel/Vienna
Vänskä/Lahti
Ashkenazy/Phlharmonia
Davis/Boston

Maazel has been my favorite since the LP days with Karajan's digital remake a close second. My problem with Ashkenazy is the relatively swift pace of the storm section. I prefer it slower.

Sarge
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on January 25, 2009, 03:24:01 PM
I own these:

Karajan (DG 1984)
Karajan (EMI)
Maazel/Vienna
Vänskä/Lahti
Ashkenazy/Phlharmonia
Davis/Boston

Maazel has been my favorite since the LP days with Karajan's digital remake a close second. My problem with Ashkenazy is the relatively swift pace of the storm section. I prefer it slower.

Sarge

Yes, I agree about the storm section. Another very fine version is with Hans Rosbaud and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra on DGG Originals (Mono 1958). A very powerful performance on a great CD of Sibelius tone poems etc.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on January 25, 2009, 06:06:07 PM
Another very fine version is with Hans Rosbaud and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra on DGG Originals (Mono 1958). A very powerful performance on a great CD of Sibelius tone poems etc.

Hmm, I have that one in DG's tribute Rosbaud box. Haven't given it a listen yet, though. I should remedy that.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: samtrb on January 28, 2009, 07:12:38 PM
I just listened to both versions i have for the first time (sorry guys i am still enjoying Ormandy's sibelius 2nd !)
The difference in length is considerable:
Berglund / Helsinki PO / EMI: 14.52
Neeme Jarvi / Gothenburg / DG Trio: 20.09
I tend to like slower sibelius, maybe a middle length version should be optimal !
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Renfield on January 28, 2009, 07:26:56 PM
I realised I lack Karajan's digital version (though I have all the others), and that there are two from Ashkenazy in my collection: the second from his recent cycle with the Stockholm Philharmonic (IIRC), in a disc I bought for the recording of the 2nd Symphony mostly out of curiosity.

Can someone please link the most recent iteration of that digital Karajan Tapiola, so I may hunt it down? Thanks in advance. :)
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Drasko on January 29, 2009, 04:10:46 AM
Can someone please link the most recent iteration of that digital Karajan Tapiola, so I may hunt it down? Thanks in advance. :)

First CD release, the one I have, should be short disc with just Finlandia, Swan and Valse Triste (probably straight LP reissue), some birds in flight against purple cloudy sky on cover, and there is DG Masters release with Nielsen's 4th Symphony.

Ashkenazy's Stockholm cycle got some very good reviews recently, how do you like it.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Renfield on January 29, 2009, 07:48:54 PM
Ashkenazy's Stockholm cycle got some very good reviews recently, how do you like it.

Good question. I've had the disc for months, never spun it. I should do so soon.

(I'd heard the Ashkenazy/Stockholm partnership live doing the 2nd, and so thought I'd pick up the disc to remember the occasion when I saw it this year. And the concert wasn't bad. Although the Nielsen concerto, via Martin Fröst, pretty much dominated the rest of the programme. :))

Edit: And thanks, I'll look for the Masters release first, for the sake of the Nielsen 4th I'm also missing.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Est.1965 on January 29, 2009, 08:14:58 PM
Vänskä/Lahti

He has a magic with the tempo and an unerring ability to make the sprites in the forest come alive, and I'm pretty sure that by the end of his recording with the Lahti, first violins had turned into trees and small bright eyed creatures blinked out of their hollows.
Also I wish wish wish that Neumann and the CPO had some Sibelius out there, because I've grown to love the precision and orchestral mastery Neumann brought to his work.  He has a depth of accuracy and you get a positive broadening sense of Neumann revealing exactly what a symphony is all about in realtime. His ability to find the right nuance in the right place and emphasise what shouldn't be unexpected would have suited a Sibelius Tapiola groundbreaker methinks.   :o
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on January 29, 2009, 08:58:19 PM
Tapiola is -by far- my overall all time favourite symphonic work. Period. In this case, Sibelius is my soulmate. In this piece, I feel at home. It says all for me. About me. No force on earth can split the love between me and Tapiola! :D Never! I'm going absolutely crazy about this piece. This piece deserves an own thread, this thread. Finally.

I've heard many Tapiolas. To me, there's only Blomstedt SFSO. Blomstedt. Blomstedt. The one which is on the Blomstedt Sibelius Symphony cycle.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/415dkb3WBNL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

Appropriate Tempo. To quote mahler10th: "He has a magic with the tempo and an unerring ability to make the sprites in the forest come alive" :D

Honestly, I own a lot Vänskä/Sibelius stuff, but Tapiola, no. The desaster starts with the opening: way too fast. The Blomstedt one is 19:35, I'd say rather a slower one.

Additionally, the Blomstedt has very good sound quality. I'll embed beginning of the piece and storm section tomorrow into this posting. [EDIT: Done -->]

Beginning:
[mp3=200,20,0,left]http://www.fileden.com/files/2007/9/21/1446950/tapiola_beginning1397671885.mp3[/mp3]

Another excerpt:
[mp3=200,20,0,left]http://www.fileden.com/files/2007/9/21/1446950/tapiola_middle3217329208.mp3[/mp3]

Violin storm:
[mp3=200,20,0,left]http://www.fileden.com/files/2007/9/21/1446950/tapiola_storm3269494181.mp3[/mp3]

Berglund / Helsinki PO / EMI: 14.52
Neeme Jarvi / Gothenburg / DG Trio: 20.09

20 Minutes? I think I have to listen to the Järvi again :)

The Tapiola part of the Nupen DVD is on Youtube. It's Ashkenazy on this one. The ending of the storm scene with the 5 Timpani hits, is done exactly how I think it's appropriate, a bit better than even Blomstedt.

http://www.youtube.com/v/8noD7PhA-po
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on February 01, 2009, 09:30:30 PM
Seen this in the old Forum :)

Discovering Music: Sibelius - Tapiola

Quote
Stephen Johnson joins the BBC Philharmonic, conducted by Martyn Brabbins, for a workshop on the great Finnish composer's final orchestral work.

The tone poem Tapiola was inspired by the legends and atmosphere of the great Finnish forests.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio3/discoveringmusic/pip/ftng8/

It's from 2006, but still works :D

I personally use http://mplayer.de.gg/ for formats like RealAudio...
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on February 02, 2009, 07:35:09 AM
The dark side of the BBC Sibelius lectures in "Discovering music" (there are severyl more works): Realaudio. Truncated at 43:00. I really tried to get the whole stream with mplayer.exe (edited the .ram file), but not working. Sucks sucks sucks.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on February 02, 2009, 10:04:09 AM
Tapiola is -by far- my overall all time favourite symphonic work. Period. In this case, Sibelius is my soulmate. In this piece, I feel at home. It says all for me. About me. No force on earth can split the love between me and Tapiola! :D Never! I'm going absolutely crazy about this piece. This piece deserves an own thread, this thread. Finally.

The Tapiola part of the Nupen DVD is on Youtube. It's Ashkenazy on this one. The ending of the storm scene with the 5 Timpani hits, is done exactly how I think it's appropriate, a bit better than even Blomstedt.

Tapiola is my favourite symphonic work by Sibelius. I find it frightening, awe-inspiring and imbued with a sadness beyond words. So I can imagine your undying love and fascination! Thanks for the YouTube clip - if the storm is played well, as it is here, it's goosebumps with me. The violin passage easily surpasses Herrmann's Psycho music for sheer scariness.

Karajan's is the only performance I know well (on a two-fer with symphonies 4-7). I have Järvi's, too, but it failed to impress me.

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Tapio Dimitriyevich Shostakovich on February 02, 2009, 12:09:08 PM
if the storm is played well, as it is here
It's people hear a storm scene here. To me it always has been something like excitement, chaos and trouble amongst the wood sprites, with Tapio exercising his authority in the end.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on February 02, 2009, 01:19:45 PM
It's people hear a storm scene here. To me it always has been something like excitement, chaos and trouble amongst the wood sprites, with Tapio exercising his authority in the end.

You could be (mythologically) right. I haven't read the Kalevala, though, only the first few pages in a German translation (Reclam Verlag), so I don't know a lot about Tapio...
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: karlhenning on February 02, 2009, 03:22:21 PM
Tapiola is -by far- my overall all time favourite symphonic work. Period. In this case, Sibelius is my soulmate. In this piece, I feel at home. It says all for me. About me. No force on earth can split the love between me and Tapiola! :D Never! I'm going absolutely crazy about this piece. This piece deserves an own thread, this thread. Finally.

I've heard many Tapiolas. To me, there's only Blomstedt SFSO. Blomstedt. Blomstedt. The one which is on the Blomstedt Sibelius Symphony cycle.

[ image deleted ]

Appropriate Tempo. To quote mahler10th: "He has a magic with the tempo and an unerring ability to make the sprites in the forest come alive" :D

Honestly, I own a lot Vänskä/Sibelius stuff, but Tapiola, no. The desaster starts with the opening: way too fast. The Blomstedt one is 19:35, I'd say rather a slower one.

Additionally, the Blomstedt has very good sound quality. I'll embed beginning of the piece and storm section tomorrow into this posting.

Could well be my favorite, too.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Benji on February 02, 2009, 03:42:56 PM
Could well be my favorite, too.

As much love as I have for Blomstedt's accounts of Sibelius's symphonies, which opened up many of the works to me, when it comes to his Tapiola I found that there's something about it that grates on me. I'll have to listen again, it's been a long time since that impression was formed.

At any rate, I don't think i've seen a vote yet for Segerstam's account with the Helinski Phil. Probably controversial but I like it simply because it has some cold fire in it! I'm equally fond of Vanska's interpretation, which is pretty much opposite to Segerstam (I find that a lot when comparing their respective interpretations of the same work, for example Rautavaara's 8th). I'll concede that Vanska is much closer to overall mood of the work, being a superbly chilly affair, but Segerstam plays up the drama in the music so it becomes genuinly terrifying in the climax. I want to be bloody well scared of a Forest God!
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Coopmv on February 02, 2009, 08:06:08 PM
When it comes to Sibelius' symphonies, HvK and Colin Davis are the two conductors I listen to ...  I also have the SACD set by Neemi Jarvi with the Gothenburg Symphony.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: karlhenning on February 03, 2009, 09:05:10 AM
Quote
Could well be my favorite, too.

I mean, the Blomstedt/SFSO could well be my favorite recording of Tapiola, too.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on February 03, 2009, 09:11:34 AM
I also like Segerstam's performance, coupled with the Four Legends for Orchestra. A great disc.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: DavidRoss on February 04, 2009, 07:50:06 AM
Others have already mentioned all of those I'm most likely to reach for when I want to hear this piece:  Vänskä/Lahti, Blomstedt/SFS, Segerstam/HPO, Maazel/WP, Berglund/HPO (wish he'd done this with the COE!).  One I've not seen mentioned is Sakari/Iceland SO's lean but tonally rich (and in the strings as well as the predominant winds), brisk but rubato-laden rendering.  I believe their disc of tone poems is still in the catalog--quite representative of their approach to the symphonies in their very good but little-known cycle.

I also have 3 Karajan recordings (one analog, 10 digital).  This thread reminds me that it's been a long time since hearing any.  IIRC, the DGG recording coupled with his surprisingly good late symphony recordings with the BP is pretty damned good and deserves a hearing very soon. 

One thing I love very much about JS's music, and which helps keep it fresh for me, is that it responds favorably to a variety of interpretive approaches, none of which is definitively "right"--though in general I prefer less overtly dramatic readings that reveal the music through unfolding mystery rather than shoving it in my face.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Benji on February 04, 2009, 09:47:49 AM
I also have 3 Karajan recordings (one analog, 10 digital). 

Of course, there are only 10 types of people; those who understand binary jokes and those who don't.  ;)
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: DavidRoss on February 04, 2009, 10:11:34 AM
Of course, there are only 10 types of people; those who understand binary jokes and those who don't.  ;)
;D  Good to have you back, Benji.  Now if only Nigel would return!

Re. Tapiola: Having just listened to 2 1/2 recordings of the piece, I offer the following description of Herbie the K's DGG recording with the BP:

This is thick, homogenous, leaden, string-heavy, stupor-inducing, legato mush, bereft of spontaneity and liveliness.  The same forces’ late ‘70s recording for EMI is only marginally better; it suffers from the same faults, which his detracters find in all too many of HvK’s recordings.

To cleanse my aural palate, I played the bracing Sakari/Iceland recording recommended above.  Now that’s dandy music-making and much better represents the Sibelius we know and love!




Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Benji on February 04, 2009, 10:45:30 AM
;D  Good to have you back, Benji.  Now if only Nigel would return!

Re. Tapiola: Having just listened to 2 1/2 recordings of the piece, I offer the following description of Herbie the K's DGG recording with the BP:

This is thick, homogenous, leaden, string-heavy, stupor-inducing, legato mush, bereft of spontaneity and liveliness.  The same forces’ late ‘70s recording for EMI is only marginally better; it suffers from the same faults, which his detracters find in all too many of HvK’s recordings.

To cleanse my aural palate, I played the bracing Sakari/Iceland recording recommended above.  Now that’s dandy music-making and much better represents the Sibelius we know and love!


Sounds about right! I can take Karajan in Beethoven, but his Sibelius, well I just don't think the glove fits.

I really enjoyed Sakari's 2nd Tempest Suite but that's all I can remember hearing from his Sibelius. I looked for his Tapiola on Napster but with no luck, but what I have found is very interesting: Kajanus conducting the London premiere of Tapiola with the LSO back in 1932. The sound really isn't half bad considering the vintage. I'll report back on the performance in about... 17 minutes!  :)
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Benji on February 04, 2009, 11:30:31 AM
Ok, so impressions of Robert Kajanus's account of Tapiola with the London Symphony Orchestra, dating from 1932.

In a word: epic. It took a few minutes for my ears to adjust to the historic sound, which only really suffers in that the dynamic range is noticeably much lower than these days. This hiss isn't so noticeable from speakers, but will be more intrusive on headphones but from someone who doesn't listen to an awful lot of historic performances I didn't find it at all grating. For the majority of the piece, i.e. the quieter string-led passages the sound is great; it's only really during the big tutti that you notice the dynamic range sort of top out.

Back to the performance! The way it unfolds is really something magical. Kajanus really knew how to pace the piece to achieve a really palpable sense of tension and I don't think i've ever heard the storm section so well-realised. Certainly no recording has ever prompted so much spine-tingling! With regard to the orchestra, I can't even pick any section out to highlight as it's such great ensemble work. Really amazing work from the spritely 28 year old LSO!! All in all, I can't recommend highly enough that everyone try to find a copy of this to listen to. Kajanus, obviously informed by the Great Man himself, was clearly every bit the master interpreter and I almost wish I was around at that time to have heard it live!

[Edited to correct to the past tense. Damn it that Kajanus isn't around anymore...]

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: rubio on February 04, 2009, 12:26:12 PM
Which transfer is the Kajanus Tapiola? Koch/Finlandia? I've read that the readily available Divine Art remastering should be overfiltered.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Benji on February 04, 2009, 12:29:45 PM
Which transfer is the Kajanus Tapiola? Koch/Finlandia? I've read that the readily available Divine Art remastering should be overfiltered.

It is the Divine Art one it seems. I'm not sure what you mean by overfiltered (i'm not up on historic recording jargon!)
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: rubio on February 04, 2009, 01:20:57 PM
It is the Divine Art one it seems. I'm not sure what you mean by overfiltered (i'm not up on historic recording jargon!)

I just read one comment about the transfer here.

http://www.amazon.com/Sibelius-Tapiola-Symphonies-Nos-6/dp/B0009A414W/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1233782400&sr=1-3
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Benji on February 04, 2009, 02:47:45 PM
I just read one comment about the transfer here.

http://www.amazon.com/Sibelius-Tapiola-Symphonies-Nos-6/dp/B0009A414W/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1233782400&sr=1-3

I see! So, the reduction in background noise was bought at the cost of "truncating" the sound, by which I suppose he means the limited dynamic range I alluded to. That makes sense I guess; like I say i'm no expert on historic recordings or the process of transferring them to CD, but it makes sense that there would have to be a significant comprimise in order to 'clean up' the sound to a listenable level.

Those Koch transfers are pretty pricy!!!  :o
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on February 06, 2009, 08:45:46 AM
The Kajanus is also a great performance and I liked the Sakari/Icelandic recording on Naxos too.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on April 12, 2013, 05:03:31 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: mjwal 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Mirror Image 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Octave 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...
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Mirror Image on April 17, 2013, 02:42:24 PM
Another one of my favorite Tapiola performances is Segerstam with the Helsinki PO on Ondine.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: mjwal 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  :)
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Octave 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia 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.

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51QTs-GMH2L.jpg)

Released in 1984.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Jo498 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Biffo 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51QTs-GMH2L.jpg)

Released in 1984.

I agree - that is a great and classic performance and I love the cover image as well.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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:

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on February 16, 2018, 05:27:52 AM
My current favourite:

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen 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.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Jo498 on February 16, 2018, 05:35:09 AM
Sure. But further above in message #40 someone says that Karajan/DG was "the worst". This could refer both to the 1980s and the 1960s recording which is nowadays included in a twofer with symphonies 4-7. (I have the latter, but no strong opinion on either piece or recording.) There is at least one more (1970s?) on EMI

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on February 16, 2018, 06:40:42 AM
Sure. But further above in message #40 someone says that Karajan/DG was "the worst". This could refer both to the 1980s and the 1960s recording which is nowadays included in a twofer with symphonies 4-7. (I have the latter, but no strong opinion on either piece or recording.) There is at least one more (1970s?) on EMI



Oh, I see what you mean. Not sure. I have all three recordings and like both the DGG Tapiolas. I don't have the one with symphonies 4-7 at hand but suspect it is from the 1960s.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia on February 16, 2018, 08:58:37 AM
I prefer Karajan's 80's Tapiola to the 60's version. I have listened to the EMI Berlin one, I am sure, but don't have a distinct memory of it. There is also a Karajan/Philharmonia recording on EMI, mono I think.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on February 16, 2018, 12:22:07 PM
I prefer Karajan's 80's Tapiola to the 60's version. I have listened to the EMI Berlin one, I am sure, but don't have a distinct memory of it. There is also a Karajan/Philharmonia recording on EMI, mono I think.
Good to know.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia on February 16, 2018, 12:25:55 PM
Good to know.

His Philharmonia recordings are often an interesting comparison, since he wasn't in total control in those days. He had a strong personality in Walter Legge to contend with. There can be dramatic differences between Philharmonia recordings made in the late 50's and Berlin recordings made just a few years later.

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on February 16, 2018, 12:49:49 PM
His Philharmonia recordings are often an interesting comparison, since he wasn't in total control in those days. He had a strong personality in Walter Legge to contend with. There can be dramatic differences between Philharmonia recordings made in the late 50's and Berlin recordings made just a few years later.
Interesting indeed. I think I prefer both the DGG versions to those made for EMI. I also like Berglund's Philharmonia version, which is understated but still very affecting. I prefer it to his Helsinki version, good as that is.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: aukhawk on February 19, 2018, 03:29:14 AM
Oh, I see what you mean. Not sure. I have all three recordings and like both the DGG Tapiolas. I don't have the one with symphonies 4-7 at hand but suspect it is from the 1960s.

It was recorded either late '64 or early '65.  The original release in 1965 was coupled with the 5th Symphony (using the same cover art as the 4-7 reissue set).
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Biffo on February 19, 2018, 04:02:54 AM
I prefer Karajan's 80's Tapiola to the 60's version. I have listened to the EMI Berlin one, I am sure, but don't have a distinct memory of it. There is also a Karajan/Philharmonia recording on EMI, mono I think.

Karajan recorded Tapiola twice for EMI, with the Philharmonia in 1953 and the Berlin Philharmonic in 1976. I have both these recordings but haven't listened to either for a while, I will have to refresh my memory when the drilling outside stops. I don't have either of the DG versions.

What would be interesting is what Sibelius really thought of the recordings of the 4th & 5th symphonies Karajan made with the Philharmonia. Legge sent Sibelius copies and Sibelius replied several months later -

Dear Friend
You have perhaps wondered why I have not written to you before and thanked you for the excellent recordings of my Fourth and Fifth Symphony.  I have now heard them many times and can only say I am happy. Karajan is a great master. His interpretation is superb, technically and musically.

With kindest regards and all good wishes
Yours sincerely,
Jean Sibelius

(dated Helsinki 11 May 1955)

Legge was skeptical as Sibelius had replied earlier but only mentioned the 4th Symphony. Sibelius was very old by this time and was possibly just being polite.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: North Star on February 19, 2018, 05:43:56 AM
Legge was skeptical as Sibelius had replied earlier but only mentioned the 4th Symphony. Sibelius was very old by this time and was possibly just being polite.
As I recall, Sibelius tended to praise everyone who performed his works (apart from general gripes about too slow andantes, I suppose).
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Biffo on February 19, 2018, 06:25:53 AM
As I recall, Sibelius tended to praise everyone who performed his works (apart from general gripes about too slow andantes, I suppose).

Barbirolli thought the same after he received a glowing letter from Sibelius regarding his New York recording of the 2nd symphony.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Biffo on February 20, 2018, 05:00:32 AM
I have now had a chance to listen to both of Karajan's EMI recordings - Philharmonia (1953) an Berlin PO (1977). The later recording has vastly better sound but apart from that I can find little difference between the performances.

I have three Berglund versions, one with Bournemouth SO and two with the Helsinki Philharmonic (1982 & 1987). Will have to give them a try soon.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on February 27, 2018, 05:20:38 AM
I have now had a chance to listen to both of Karajan's EMI recordings - Philharmonia (1953) an Berlin PO (1977). The later recording has vastly better sound but apart from that I can find little difference between the performances.

I have three Berglund versions, one with Bournemouth SO and two with the Helsinki Philharmonic (1982 & 1987). Will have to give them a try soon.
The Berglund Philharmonia recording is my favourite of his versions although they are all good.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: North Star on February 27, 2018, 05:23:43 AM
The Berglund Philharmonia recording is my favourite of his versions although they are all good.
Berglund Philharmonia? Which recording is this?
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Jo498 on February 27, 2018, 06:13:31 AM
With the Philharmonia Orchestra London, apparently an 1980s? digital recording.



Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on March 04, 2018, 01:35:14 PM
With the Philharmonia Orchestra London, apparently an 1980s? digital recording.


Yes, that's my favourite of the Berglund recordings.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia on March 08, 2018, 10:28:25 AM
Based on listening yesterday, definitely not Berglund/Helsinki on EMI. Dry and bloodless, is my impression.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: André on March 08, 2018, 11:20:49 AM
Maiden recordings of Sibelius tend to be of Symphony no 2 + Valse triste or Finlandia. Tapiola is not a work a conductor plays just for fun. For the standard public it is still difficult listening.

I think that whoever records it has a more than a superficial interest in the composer. I yet have to encounter a performance that fails to move and frighten me. But then, I haven’t heard Berglund/Helsinki  :D.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia on March 08, 2018, 11:25:23 AM
Berglund certainly has more than a superficial interest in Sibelius, he recorded, what, half a dozen symphony cycles? But I like his Bournemouth cycle much more than the Helsinki.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Draško on March 08, 2018, 11:43:40 AM
Haven't listened to Tapiola in a while, my favorite was Vanska/Lahti, I thought he gets the scary bit really well. Also I remember liking the old Hannikainen recording on Everest, with LSO I think, coupled with great violin concerto with Spivakovsky.

As for Berglund I'm currently massively enjoying his Chamber Orchestra of Europe symphony cycle. Incredible 5th. Probably not to all tastes, very lean and transparent with tendency of downplaying main themes in favor of secondary lines and creating new balances and relations, but still very flexible with tempos (almost romantic in that sense). It sounded quite strange at first and not everything works but it really gripped me.   
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia on March 08, 2018, 11:48:57 AM
Sounds enticing.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: aukhawk on March 09, 2018, 02:25:17 AM
As for Berglund I'm currently massively enjoying his Chamber Orchestra of Europe symphony cycle. Incredible 5th. Probably not to all tastes, very lean and transparent with tendency of downplaying main themes in favor of secondary lines and creating new balances and relations, but still very flexible with tempos (almost romantic in that sense). It sounded quite strange at first and not everything works but it really gripped me.

Yes Berglund/COE is probably my favourite for the 6th symphony.  And certainly an interesting alternative to visit occasionally, in the others.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Draško on March 10, 2018, 04:56:31 AM
Yes Berglund/COE is probably my favourite for the 6th symphony.  And certainly an interesting alternative to visit occasionally, in the others.

He takes opening movement of the 6th daringly swift but COE winds play a blinder. I've been very impressed with COE throughout the cycle especially the winds, seriously virtuosic, and Finlandia's recording is so clear and crisp that no room for error is allowed.

It probably is an alternative set to more mainstream interpretations but it's became my first choice in 3-7 (especially 5). In 1 & 2 I have to admit to prefer more romantic approach, with a whiff of Tchaikovsky. Sanderling fills that spot for me.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Josquin13 on March 12, 2018, 09:05:58 AM
Paavo Berglund's Sibelius was often best live.  For example, his final two Sibelius recordings with the London Philharmonic Orchestra live at the Barbican fully attest to how special Berglund's Sibelius could be in concert, as opposed to the studio.  IMO, his live LPO 5th is rivaled only by Kajanus, and his live LPO 7th has no equal:

https://www.amazon.com/Sibelius-Symphonies-No-JEAN-SIBELIUS/dp/B000B865B4/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1520873627&sr=1-1&keywords=berglund+sibelius+sacd
https://www.amazon.com/Sibelius-Symphonies-Nos-Swan-Tuonela/dp/B008P76VTE/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1520873676&sr=1-1&keywords=berglund+sibelius+5+6

As for Tapiola, I have four favorite, contrasting versions--Paavo Berglund & the Philharmonia, Leif Segerstam & the Helsinki Philharmonic (who I tend to prefer in the tone poems & shorter works, rather than in the symphonies), Hans Rosbaud & the Berlin Philharmonic, and Ashkenazy's performance in the Christopher Nuppen documentary film on Sibelius, with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.  Ashkenazy isn't a conductor that I'd normally recommend in Sibelius, but his performance of Tapiola in the Nuppen film is one of the best I've heard (& more gripping than his studio account with the Philharmonia, IMO).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUaH61AICLY
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JPIgLMtKw4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQ3Tlua8P1I
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8noD7PhA-po

Segerstam's slower, first recording with the Danish National Symphony is very interesting too:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n0Xtg_pbLr0

Historically speaking, Robert Kajanus' 1926 recording is essentially listening:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IIT-57li4DA

as is Serge Koussevitzky, conducting the Boston Symphony Orchestra:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVB4LUipXGI

Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on March 12, 2018, 12:21:14 PM
Paavo Berglund's Sibelius was often best live.  For example, his final two Sibelius recordings with the London Philharmonic Orchestra live at the Barbican fully attest to how special Berglund's Sibelius could be in concert, as opposed to the studio.  IMO, his live LPO 5th is rivaled only by Kajanus, and his live LPO 7th has no equal:

https://www.amazon.com/Sibelius-Symphonies-No-JEAN-SIBELIUS/dp/B000B865B4/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1520873627&sr=1-1&keywords=berglund+sibelius+sacd
https://www.amazon.com/Sibelius-Symphonies-Nos-Swan-Tuonela/dp/B008P76VTE/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1520873676&sr=1-1&keywords=berglund+sibelius+5+6

As for Tapiola, I have four favorite, contrasting versions--Paavo Berglund & the Philharmonia, Leif Segerstam & the Helsinki Philharmonic (who I tend to prefer in the tone poems & shorter works, rather than in the symphonies), Hans Rosbaud & the Berlin Philharmonic, and Ashkenazy's performance in the Christopher Nuppen documentary film on Sibelius, with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra.  Ashkenazy isn't a conductor that I'd normally recommend in Sibelius, but his performance of Tapiola in the Nuppen film is one of the best I've heard (& more gripping than his studio account with the Philharmonia, IMO).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUaH61AICLY
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JPIgLMtKw4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQ3Tlua8P1I
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8noD7PhA-po

Segerstam's slower, first recording with the Danish National Symphony is very interesting too:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n0Xtg_pbLr0

Historically speaking, Robert Kajanus' 1926 recording is essentially listening:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IIT-57li4DA

as is Serge Koussevitzky, conducting the Boston Symphony Orchestra:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVB4LUipXGI
Josquin13,
Thank you very much for this most interesting post of recommendations. I totally agree with your list of favourite Tapiola recordings, especially Berglund's Philharmonia recording alongside Rosbaud on DGG, Kajanus, Segerstam on Ondine and Chandos and I've also enjoyed Ashkenazy's Decca version. Also Sir Alexander Gibson with the RSNO and the new Ondine version I mentioned above (Finnish RSO, Lintu).
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Josquin13 on March 12, 2018, 06:45:20 PM
Vandermolen,

My pleasure, and thank you for your kind reply.   Yes, I agree that Sir Alexander Gibson was a first rate Sibelius conductor.  His excellent set of tone poems on Chandos was how I first got to know some of the rarer tone poems; that is, before BIS & the Lahti orchestra recorded literally everything.

I've yet to get to Lintu's Sibelius.  Soon, I hope.

By the way, if you haven't seen the following short documentary film about conductor/pianist Vladimir Ashkenazy's recent trip to Finland & Sibelius's home "Ainola", it's a must for all Sibelius (& Ashkenazy) fans.  I especially enjoyed that it was shot in HD, as the scenery around Ainola is so vivid that it made me feel like I was there:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnPFI3Yf5dY
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on March 13, 2018, 06:48:35 AM
Vandermolen,

My pleasure, and thank you for your kind reply.   Yes, I agree that Sir Alexander Gibson was a first rate Sibelius conductor.  His excellent set of tone poems on Chandos was how I first got to know some of the rarer tone poems; that is, before BIS & the Lahti orchestra recorded literally everything.

I've yet to get to Lintu's Sibelius.  Soon, I hope.

By the way, if you haven't seen the following short documentary film about conductor/pianist Vladimir Ashkenazy's recent trip to Finland & Sibelius's home "Ainola", it's a must for all Sibelius (& Ashkenazy) fans.  I especially enjoyed that it was shot in HD, as the scenery around Ainola is so vivid that it made me feel like I was there:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnPFI3Yf5dY
Josquin13,
Again, thank you very much for this - I shall watch the programme with much interest.
I was lucky enough to visit Sibelius's home at 'Ainola' in 2013 with my brother and my kind Finnish friends who took me there - it was a wonderful experience.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia on March 13, 2018, 09:18:17 AM
As for Berglund I'm currently massively enjoying his Chamber Orchestra of Europe symphony cycle. Incredible 5th. Probably not to all tastes, very lean and transparent with tendency of downplaying main themes in favor of secondary lines and creating new balances and relations, but still very flexible with tempos (almost romantic in that sense). It sounded quite strange at first and not everything works but it really gripped me.

Ok, I've dug up my Berglund/COE set, I've got to find time to listen to it.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Josquin13 on March 14, 2018, 08:59:33 AM
Vandermolen writes, "I was lucky enough to visit Sibelius's home at 'Ainola' in 2013 with my brother and my kind Finnish friends who took me there - it was a wonderful experience."

Yes, I can imagine that would be a wonderful pilgrimage to take, for all Sibelius lovers.  I hope to visit 'Ainola' someday myself (along with 'Villa Kokkonen' on Lake Tuusula).   In the meantime, HD is the next best thing.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Baron Scarpia on March 14, 2018, 09:06:41 AM
Vandermolen writes, "I was lucky enough to visit Sibelius's home at 'Ainola' in 2013 with my brother and my kind Finnish friends who took me there - it was a wonderful experience."

Yes, I can imagine that would be a wonderful pilgrimage to take, for all Sibelius lovers.  I hope to visit 'Ainola' someday myself (along with 'Villa Kokkonen' on Lake Tuusula).   In the meantime, HD is the next best thing.

Site of Sibelius’ famous fireplace?
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on March 14, 2018, 10:15:32 AM
Vandermolen writes, "I was lucky enough to visit Sibelius's home at 'Ainola' in 2013 with my brother and my kind Finnish friends who took me there - it was a wonderful experience."

Yes, I can imagine that would be a wonderful pilgrimage to take, for all Sibelius lovers.  I hope to visit 'Ainola' someday myself (along with 'Villa Kokkonen' on Lake Tuusula).   In the meantime, HD is the next best thing.
Yes, you must go - it was a wonderful experience to be there and of course Sibelius is buried in the garden.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: Mirror Image on March 19, 2018, 08:03:45 AM
I’m sure I mentioned it on this thread (somewhere), but it’s worth mentioning again: Segerstam’s Tapiola on Ondine is outstanding. I think he gets the piece right in that the pacing and attention to the dynamics in the music are exemplary. It has this shamanistic, dark forest spell-on-you vibe that is quite appropriate I think.
Title: Re: Sibelius's 'Tapiola' favourite recording.
Post by: vandermolen on March 19, 2018, 02:54:06 PM
I’m sure I mentioned it on this thread (somewhere), but it’s worth mentioning again: Segerstam’s Tapiola on Ondine is outstanding. I think he gets the piece right in that the pacing and attention to the dynamics in the music are exemplary. It has this shamanistic, dark forest spell-on-you vibe that is quite appropriate I think.
One of the great performances - I agree. I also like his earlier Chandos version.