Author Topic: Bruckner's Abbey  (Read 589307 times)

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Offline André

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey: Bernard Haitink and Bruckner
« Reply #3620 on: October 22, 2021, 07:05:06 AM »
What are your thoughts on the Haitink set of Bruckner symphonies?

By a certain James Leonard:



See:

https://www.allmusic.com/album/bruckner-the-symphonies-mw0001840021

Hmmm… this article is full of stereotypes, not to mention a surfeit of the adverb ‘more’…

My first ever recordings of the 1st and 8th were Haitink’s COA versions. That 1st is still my go-to version and the 8th remains a top choice for a dynamic, biting account of the work - Haitink slowed the tempi down in the 8th with each of his numerous remakes. His 1960s-70s COA cycle is still the reference for me. He did improve his take on the 5th (with the BRSO) and the 7th (COA again) subsequently.

Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey: Bernard Haitink and Bruckner
« Reply #3621 on: October 22, 2021, 08:17:58 AM »


Hmmm… this article is full of stereotypes, not to mention a surfeit of the adverb ‘more’…


My first ever recordings of the 1st and 8th were Haitink’s COA versions. That 1st is still my go-to version and the 8th remains a top choice for a dynamic, biting account of the work - Haitink slowed the tempi down in the 8th with each of his numerous remakes. His 1960s-70s COA cycle is still the reference for me. He did improve his take on the 5th (with the BRSO) and the 7th (COA again) subsequently.


I was skeptical of the curious divisions (egotistical, spiritual) among the conductors mentioned.

(Saint)     ???   Eugen Jochum   8)   remains my favorite for all the symphonies, but yes, the First and Eighth under Haitink are excellent!


e.g.

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/TEAtorNdCZw" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/TEAtorNdCZw</a>


This performance of the 8th I have not yet heard: it popped up, when I found the above recording.

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/sjSRv3MDQHU" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/sjSRv3MDQHU</a>
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Offline amw

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3622 on: October 22, 2021, 08:35:05 AM »
Haitink is one of the three complete cycles I have, acquired about two years ago. I have lots of other individual recordings but have not felt the need to invest in any new cycles since then (except Venzago). I think he still remains the most satisfying Bruckner conductor I know of overall even if I may be able to point to individual symphony recordings by other conductors that I like better (e.g., Vänskä 3, Dohnányi 5, Chailly 8, Rattle 9).

I am, obviously, widely hated by all true Brucknerians. I think the primacy of Haitink is the one thing we're all likely to agree on.

Online MusicTurner

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3623 on: October 22, 2021, 09:54:32 AM »
Haitink is one of the three complete cycles I have, acquired about two years ago. I have lots of other individual recordings but have not felt the need to invest in any new cycles since then (except Venzago). I think he still remains the most satisfying Bruckner conductor I know of overall even if I may be able to point to individual symphony recordings by other conductors that I like better (e.g., Vänskä 3, Dohnányi 5, Chailly 8, Rattle 9).

I am, obviously, widely hated by all true Brucknerians. I think the primacy of Haitink is the one thing we're all likely to agree on.

I have the 8th & 9th with Concertgebouw (DDD, 1981 & 1982), and they are definitely among my preferred recordings. Massive, broad readings, but very intense too, IMO.

Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3624 on: October 22, 2021, 11:10:56 AM »

Haitink is one of the three complete cycles I have, acquired about two years ago. I have lots of other individual recordings but have not felt the need to invest in any new cycles since then (except Venzago). I think he* still remains the most satisfying Bruckner conductor I know of overall

(e.g.,  Dohnányi 5Rattle 9).



* I assume the "he" refers back to Haitink and jumps over Venzago (?)


The Dohnányi Fifth and Rattle Ninth (with the completion of the Finale by the quartet of musicologists) are excellent: the latter is a great favorite!
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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Offline amw

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3625 on: October 22, 2021, 11:56:03 AM »

* I assume the "he" refers back to Haitink and jumps over Venzago (?)
Yes, sorry. I like Venzago a lot but am well aware that most people aren't going to agree with me, while Haitink seems universally liked if not always loved.

Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3626 on: October 22, 2021, 03:14:42 PM »
Yes, sorry. I like Venzago a lot but am well aware that most people aren't going to agree with me, while Haitink seems universally liked if not always loved.

A review from Amazon about the Symphony #2 conducted by Mario Venzago:

Quote


"Anybody collecting Mario Venzago's controversial Bruckner cycle (currently Symphonies 0, 1, 4 & 7 have been released) will already have some idea of what to expect in this recording of the 1877 edition of Symphony No 2: a slim orchestral sound, swift tempos and flexible phrasing.

Each release in the cycle so far has been with a different orchestra. This recording is with the mostly excellent Northern Sinfonia. Straight away the sound is tellingly "HIP" with a startlingly spare use of vibrato in the opening cello phrases. More startles come with the very free rubato in the phrasing (and throughout the performance). In an interview in the accompanying booklet Venzago argues for the use of "agogic freedom" in interpreting Bruckner, and in its own terms I find this rhetorical approach very persuasively deployed here, in this "Symphony of Pauses".

The Adagio is gorgeous, with the string playing allowed more warmth than in the outer movements and some beautiful playing from the horns and woodwinds in particular - all allowed to emerge unforcedly in the resonant (but not over resonant) acoustic of the recording venue: Hall One, The Sage, Gateshead. Technically, this recording sounds excellent.

The idea of Venzago as a fast Bruckner conductor does not hold for the Adagio. His interpretation takes 17' 42" - two minutes slower than that of Gunther Wand's Cologne RSO recording!

One particular merit of Venzago's Bruckner is its discipline in keeping the brass integrated into the orchestral texture during climaxes. This allows Bruckner's obsessively chatty string writing to be heard, which forms such an important part of the overall argument of the works - though at times (the climax of the Adagio for example) it might seem that just too much is going on. "



See:

https://www.amazon.com/Bruckner-Symphony-No-2-Anton/dp/B007S6R3E0

"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey: Live Recordings with Jochum/Concertgebouw
« Reply #3627 on: October 31, 2021, 08:51:07 AM »
This just came across the desk: a "new mastering" of Symphonies IV, VI,VII, and VIII.


<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/30Inf9Ax9RI" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/30Inf9Ax9RI</a>



They also offer this "Recording of the Century" of Symphony #5:


<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/6J4IDfajZHw&amp;list=RD6J4IDfajZHw&amp;start_radio=1&amp;rv=6J4IDfajZHw&amp;t=41" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/6J4IDfajZHw&amp;list=RD6J4IDfajZHw&amp;start_radio=1&amp;rv=6J4IDfajZHw&amp;t=41</a>



"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline André

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3628 on: October 31, 2021, 09:47:05 AM »
Is there a topic devoted specifically to the 4th symphony (‘Romantic’) ?

Offline André

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3629 on: October 31, 2021, 10:22:01 AM »
Cross-posted:



Disc 4, the 1876 finale (aka ‘Volkfest’ plus the alternative versions of various movements in the 1878, 1880 and 1881 versions. That symphony’s tangle of versions, editions, alternative movements and the like is just as complicated as that of the 3rd symphony. Bruckner seems to have found his way with the final version of the Romantic. After that it was comparatively smooth sailing, until he hit a snag again with the 8th.

This disc of discarded or unpublished bits of the 4th (including complete performances of the 1876 and 1881 finale) makes for compelling listening. The performances are superb. Hrusa’s Bruckner is closer to Schubert and Dvorak than Mahler and Strauss.

Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3630 on: November 01, 2021, 12:42:18 PM »
For the Haitink fans out there!

The Bruckner website is offering FLAC downloads of Bernard Haitink conducting the European Youth Orchestra in Bruckner's Seventh Symphony.



Quote
With news of the death of conductor, Bernard Haitink, I sent readers of this newsletter a link to my June, 2017 Download of the Month containing Haitink's performance of the Bruckner Symphony No. 8 with the European Community Youth Orchestra. That performance produced quite a stir among listeners for its extraordinary playing and interpretation.

This month, I will provide one more example. Here is a performance of Bruckner's Symphony No. 7 as presented by Bernard Haitink and the European Youth Orchestra in Amsterdam on August 29th, 2016
.


https://www.abruckner.com//downloads/downloadofthemonth/November21/


I have had no time to listen to these offerings yet.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

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Offline LKB

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3631 on: November 04, 2021, 07:41:40 AM »
I have the 8th & 9th with Concertgebouw (DDD, 1981 & 1982), and they are definitely among my preferred recordings. Massive, broad readings, but very intense too, IMO.

+1

My favorite recordings of these two works for nearly forty years. One of the interesting facets is the difference in engineering, with the 8th miked more closely. In the 9th, the acoustic ( or, if you like, character ) of the Concertgebouw itself is every bit as important as Haitink or the orchestra. I don't know if they removed seats to center the orchestra in the hall but the sound is, at many points, as gloriously epic as anything I've heard in an orchestral recording.
Mit Flügeln, die ich mir errungen...

Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3632 on: November 04, 2021, 10:22:00 AM »
+1

My favorite recordings of these two works for nearly forty years. One of the interesting facets is the difference in engineering, with the 8th miked more closely. In the 9th, the acoustic ( or, if you like, character ) of the Concertgebouw itself is every bit as important as Haitink or the orchestra. I don't know if they removed seats to center the orchestra in the hall but the sound is, at many points, as gloriously epic as anything I've heard in an orchestral recording.


Many thanks for the recommendation!  I must explore that performance!

Concerning acoustics and an epic sound...

About a decade ago, The Toledo Symphony, under Stefan Sanderling, began a tradition of performing a Bruckner symphony every year in the Diocese of Toledo's cathedral: I found a short essay from that era to promote the concert with the Ninth Symphony:


Quote


"...Each year another Bruckner work has been performed in this sacred space. Why the church and not the Peristyle*?

Something about Bruckner s music and the man himself make it seem a natural choice. Known as a deeply devout man, a church organist by profession, the shy, humble German villager poured his spirituality into each note.

His symphonies have been called architectural and are often compared in scale and grandeur to cathedrals. The setting enhances the music and the music deepens the spiritual power of the setting..."


See:

https://www.toledoblade.com/a-e/music-theater-dance/2008/03/23/Rosary-Cathedral-is-the-majestic-setting-for-Bruckner-symphony/stories/200803230047


* The Peristyle is a Greco-Roman style theater whose ceiling is painted to look like a night-time sky, when the lights go down.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline vers la flamme

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3633 on: November 04, 2021, 10:30:30 AM »
Many thanks for the recommendation!  I must explore that performance!

Concerning acoustics and an epic sound...

About a decade ago, The Toledo Symphony, under Stefan Sanderling, began a tradition of performing a Bruckner symphony every year in the Diocese of Toledo's cathedral: I found a short essay from that era to promote the concert with the Ninth Symphony:


Anything upcoming? My whole family is from Toledo and I owe them all a visit. Might try and arrange a trip around one of these Bruckner performances  ;D

Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3634 on: November 04, 2021, 10:52:06 AM »
Anything upcoming? My whole family is from Toledo and I owe them all a visit. Might try and arrange a trip around one of these Bruckner performances  ;D

Not Bruckner, but this year it will be Handel's Messiah at the Cathedral.

They will be playing Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde - at the Peristyle - on the 19th and 20th this month.

The Bruckner tradition at the Rosary Cathedral seems to have ended in 2015.  Stefan Sanderling left in 2017, and a new bishop arrived a few years ago, so perhaps those changes are involved.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline vers la flamme

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3635 on: November 04, 2021, 12:00:06 PM »
Not Bruckner, but this year it will be Handel's Messiah at the Cathedral.

They will be playing Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde - at the Peristyle - on the 19th and 20th this month.

The Bruckner tradition at the Rosary Cathedral seems to have ended in 2015.  Stefan Sanderling left in 2017, and a new bishop arrived a few years ago, so perhaps those changes are involved.

Hmm, too bad. Das Lied von der Erde, though; that may be worth flying up for a few days to celebrate an early Thanksgiving  :)

Offline calyptorhynchus

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey
« Reply #3636 on: November 04, 2021, 02:04:35 PM »
For the Haitink fans out there!

The Bruckner website is offering FLAC downloads of Bernard Haitink conducting the European Youth Orchestra in Bruckner's Seventh Symphony.


https://www.abruckner.com//downloads/downloadofthemonth/November21/

I have had no time to listen to these offerings yet.

The Seventh Symphony recording is a good one, but I went back to the June 2017 recording of the 8th with the same orchestra (different members!) and it's a ripper! It'll certainly be up there with my favourite 8ths. I particular I don't think I have ever head the harps and the Wagner tubas played so beautifully in the Adagio.

Offline André

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey: Live Recordings with Jochum/Concertgebouw
« Reply #3637 on: November 04, 2021, 04:18:33 PM »
This just came across the desk: a "new mastering" of Symphonies IV, VI,VII, and VIII.


<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/30Inf9Ax9RI" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/30Inf9Ax9RI</a>



They also offer this "Recording of the Century" of Symphony #5:


<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/6J4IDfajZHw&amp;list=RD6J4IDfajZHw&amp;start_radio=1&amp;rv=6J4IDfajZHw&amp;t=41" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" class="bbc_link bbc_flash_disabled new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/6J4IDfajZHw&amp;list=RD6J4IDfajZHw&amp;start_radio=1&amp;rv=6J4IDfajZHw&amp;t=41</a>

Halfway through #4. Superb. What an orchestra ! You don’t hear oboe and horn tone like that in other european orchestras. So characterful. And what amazing ensemble playing !

Do you have details on the performances, Leo ? I’v seen the date 1975. Are they all from the same year, was it a festival of some sort ?

Offline Cato

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey: Live Recordings with Jochum/Concertgebouw
« Reply #3638 on: November 04, 2021, 06:07:16 PM »
Halfway through #4. Superb. What an orchestra ! You don’t hear oboe and horn tone like that in other european orchestras. So characterful. And what amazing ensemble playing !

Do you have details on the performances, Leo ? I’ve seen the date 1975. Are they all from the same year, was it a festival of some sort ?


Sorry no, although I have spent some time searching: the "Classical Music/Reference Recording" website, there is nothing specifically about the recording there.  They apparently do not produce CD's, they sponsor only online things like the YouTube Channel, Spotify, etc.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline André

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Re: Bruckner's Abbey: Live Recordings with Jochum/Concertgebouw
« Reply #3639 on: November 05, 2021, 04:38:09 AM »
Sorry no, although I have spent some time searching: the "Classical Music/Reference Recording" website, there is nothing specifically about the recording there.  They apparently do not produce CD's, they sponsor only online things like the YouTube Channel, Spotify, etc.

I’ve found them. They seem to hail from recorded concerts issued on the Altus label. Check the discography database on John Berky’s Bruckner web site for details.

The 4th is from 1975 - an incredible performance, better IMO than Jochum’s commercial recordings. Never heard such characterful playing from the winds and brass. What an orchestra !

I’’ve also listened to the 6th, a leisurely performance of great beauty. Klemperer with the same orchestra took 6 minutes less to go through the Adagio !