The Music Room > Composer Discussion

The Barber Chair

(1/52) > >>

Szykneij:
I've been listening to quite a bit of Samuel Barber lately and I don't think we have a thread going for him yet (or at least I've been unable to find one). I did go back and re-read the Barber thread on the old board and I think there's still a lot more that can be said about his music. I just discovered his piano concerto, and the slow movement now ranks among my favorites, second only to Knoxville: Summer of 1915 which has been mentioned by many as their top Barber piece. I also admire his violin concerto and wonder if anyone can recommend their favorite recordings. I have the Isaac Stern version with Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic.

vandermolen:
Coincidentally I was listening to Barber Symphony 2 this morning. Like Walton, he did not write that much, compared with some composers, but everything is of a very high standard.

My favourites are Symphony 1 and 2, Cello Concerto, Medea Suite,  Essay No 2 and Knoxville.

As for the fine Violin Concerto, I do not have a favourite version, although there was a great LP featuring William Strickland and the Japan Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra playing Symphony 1 and the Violin Concerto which has sadly never been released on CD. It is my favourite recording of the Symphony and the VC was excellent too although I can't remember the soloist's name.

sound67:

--- Quote from: Szykniej on August 13, 2007, 05:50:40 AM ---I also admire his violin concerto and wonder if anyone can recommend their favorite recordings. I have the Isaac Stern version with Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic.

--- End quote ---

That's a good performance, too, but I favor these two more recent (and very different) ones:



Both complement each other very nicely. The Hahn is the more intimate, more subtle - the Shaham the more obviously virtuosic, big-boned, on a larger canvas (also coupled with a superb reading of the Korngold Concerto). The Meyer Violin Concerto on the Hahn disc is a pleasant, neo-romantic work.

Thomas

scottscheule:
I greatly approve of the title of the thread.

As to Barber's music, it's extraordinarily well-crafted.  The only piece of his I've tried to play was his Nocturne--which is just lovely in its complexity.  Of course the melody is gorgeous, but its run-through with tone rows (inverted and transposed), plus the whole thing is laid out in sonata form (with a masterful development that climaxes with a stirring simultaneous presentation of two motives).

I'm curious to hear his operas--I can't imagine Antony is as bad as all that.

karlhenning:
The only recording I've heard, Tony, is of James Oliver Buswell on the Naxos label;  I like it very well, but I should listen to another recording before application of the adjective "favorite" :-)

Also heard Mrs Keith Lockhardt (fie, but I never can remember her name) play this live in Jordan Hall. What delicious music!

Navigation

[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version