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The Music Room => Composer Discussion => Topic started by: Mirror Image on January 24, 2012, 10:10:08 PM

Title: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 24, 2012, 10:10:08 PM
(http://www.gehrmans.se/MediaBinaryLoader.axd?MediaArchive_VersionID=713de5d7-c523-421c-b300-968362b5eb53&FileName=Stenhammar005+ny+red+mindre%5BMaxbredd+460%5D.JPEG)

Stenhammar was a Swedish pianist and self-taught composer and conductor. His compositions began as typically late Romantic fare but evolved through three periods. In the first, his primary influences were Liszt, Brahms, and Wagner, but the music is imbued with a Nordic sound without specifically quoting Swedish folk song. His early operas Gildet på Solhaug (1892-1893) and Tirfing (1897-1898), although unsuccessful, were the pinnacles of this period. Stenhammar's second period began as he attempted to create a more concentrated and motivically oriented style, modeled on the great classicists Beethoven, Haydn, and Mozart. In spite of this, the music of this period loses none of its Nordic color. His brilliant cantata Ett folk (1904-1905) and the frequently played Second Piano Concerto are the most representative. Beginning in 1909, perhaps feeling his lack of training was detrimental to further development, Stenhammar engaged upon a nine-year course in strict counterpoint. The fruit of this study resulted in his last period, where the music becomes more contrapuntally and modally oriented, particularly in the last two of his six string quartets. Yet at the same time, his larger works, such as the orchestral Serenade and the Second Symphony, lose nothing of the earlier freshness and inspiration that make Stenhammar's music so attractive.

Stenhammar's early years were spent surrounded by culture, although he never undertook formal training except in piano. By 1900, he had established himself as a pianist, eventually giving over 1,000 concerts all over Sweden. He had also debuted as a conductor in 1897 with his own overture Excelsior!, and eventually went on to direct the Stockholm Philharmonic Society, the Royal Opera, the New Philharmonic Society, and the Göttesborgs Orkesterförening. Stenhammar eventually became one of the most important Scandinavian musicians of his era, and his compositions, including many songs, choral works, chamber and solo pieces, and theater and orchestral works represent the best music out of turn-of-the-century Sweden.

[Article taken from All Music Guide]

I'm surprised there's no thread on Stenhammar. ???

What do you guys think of Stenhammar's music? I remember hearing his Serenade a few years ago and being blown away by it. Surely this is a late-Romantic masterpiece. I haven't heard much else by Stenhammar, but this work really impressed me.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: springrite on January 24, 2012, 11:53:49 PM
My first encounter was with the symphonies. Good but not blown away by them. But the overture Excelcior is very good indeed! Then I heard the Serenade M.I. mentioned and it is surely a masterpiece!
Lately I have been listening to his two piano concerti more. The second is the more famous one but I find the first equally good. I do have a couple of solo piano CDs but have yet given them attentive listening.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: mc ukrneal on January 24, 2012, 11:59:33 PM
I think there were discussions in other threads like the Scandanavian thread, some neglected composers threads, etc. That's probably why no separate thread was started.

Stenhammar is a very interesting composer with a fair amount of discs out there now. The easiest and cheapest way (I would guess) to get his works would be to get the set on Brilliant (which was the set on BIS). I have the second concerto (which includes a serenade) from that set and it is excellent. Naxos, Hyperion, CPO, and Chandos have also released discs (as has the already mentioned BIS).

Actually, as I look through the catalog, there are a number of other discs to explore.  One in particular, recommended by someone on these boards as well, was the disc on Caprice with some choral and violin music (in stock here: http://www.amazon.com/Stenhammar-Song-W/dp/B003A6X0U8/ref=sr_1_60?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1327478169&sr=1-60 (http://www.amazon.com/Stenhammar-Song-W/dp/B003A6X0U8/ref=sr_1_60?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1327478169&sr=1-60)).



For someone looking for an intro to Swedish song (including Stenhammar), I can also recommend this one:
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Tlsy31ZqL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Florestan on January 25, 2012, 01:51:41 AM
What do you guys think of Stenhammar's music?

Probably my favorite Scandinavian Late Romantic. As Neal said, many labels have discs with his music and IMHO you can't go wrong with any of them.

Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: The new erato on January 25, 2012, 02:15:46 AM
I don't find his piano music very interesting. Neither do I find his concertoes to be particularly outstanding. His songs are good, but the symphony no 2 is a masterpiece (get the caprice disc with Westerberg in preferance to the BIS), and so are his string quartets. Unfortunately I dont know the Serenade, it has been wishlisted for ages.   
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Archaic Torso of Apollo on January 25, 2012, 04:56:51 AM
Love the 2nd Symphony. The first mvt. and scherzo are two of the best "Nordic"-sounding symphonic mvts. I know. About once a year I pull out the Naxos disc of the symphony and play it with much enjoyment.

I should listen to "Excelsior", praised above (it's on the same disc).

Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 25, 2012, 08:23:04 AM
Thanks for the feedback everybody and the recommendations.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Est.1965 on January 25, 2012, 09:06:42 AM
Midvinter is probably my favourite piece of Stenhammars music.  Though Stenhammar wrote Midvinter whenh he was in Italy, it is not the first time I have heard Scandanavian music sound almost like Scottish folk music in it's melody!  There sure are some deep and very old cultural ties between Scotland and it's Northern neighbors.  Stenhammar is, I am ashamed to say, not listened to as much as others in my Scandanavian listening repertoire, and I do not know why this should be so.  Well John, you have woke me up to this composer again, and I will play some of his stuff in a wee while to refamiliarise myself and re-instate him in my listening scheme.

http://www.youtube.com/v/XCElCPClJVc
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 25, 2012, 09:11:52 AM
The easiest and cheapest way (I would guess) to get his works would be to get the set on Brilliant (which was the set on BIS).

Actually, the Brilliant and BIS sets are different. Brilliant is one disc short of the set from BIS. I never understood this and which is why I never purchased the Brilliant set and the BIS set is out-of-print and expensive. But it's okay, I wanted the Serenade from Jarvi and I got it for a good price used. I'm not too interested in exploring the symphonies and other works just yet. I want to hear this work again before moving on.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 25, 2012, 09:14:47 AM
Well John, you have woke me up to this composer again, and I will play some of his stuff in a wee while to refamiliarise myself and re-instate him in my listening scheme.

I know I'm going to sound like a broken record, but you should really hear his Serenade. This is one of the more impressive Scandinavian late-Romantic works I've heard. It has to be counted as a masterwork I would think.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 25, 2012, 09:19:04 AM
Check these out, John when you have the time:

http://www.youtube.com/v/OReqQEkVBZs&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/v/WjfEOJubrgs
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 25, 2012, 02:59:16 PM
Midvinter is probably my favourite piece of Stenhammars music....almost like Scottish folk music in it's melody!

It does sound Scottish  8)  I don't have it in my collection but I just found a used copy for 4 Euro. Ordered it along with Symphony #2 (Westerberg/Caprice). I like Järvi's version (BIS...haven't heard his DG remake) well enough, but nearly every critic (not just our own Erato) thinks Westerberg the better performance.

Sarge
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: KeithW on January 25, 2012, 04:26:51 PM
There sure are some deep and very old cultural ties between Scotland and it's Northern neighbors.

When I was at school - in Scotland - we covered a fair collection of 'northern' composers, the teahcer's argument being that it would broaden our appreciation of the native stuff.  The latter bit didn't work for me, but I did - and still do - enjoy the Nordic stuff we listened to.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: eyeresist on January 29, 2012, 05:11:57 PM
Actually, the Brilliant and BIS sets are different. Brilliant is one disc short of the set from BIS. I never understood this and which is why I never purchased the Brilliant set and the BIS set is out-of-print and expensive. But it's okay, I wanted the Serenade from Jarvi and I got it for a good price used. I'm not too interested in exploring the symphonies and other works just yet. I want to hear this work again before moving on.

Yes, from the samples I've heard the Serenade is the standout of Stenhammer's opus, and I'd like to get the Jarvi recording, the only one to include the "missing" movement. Just waiting for the price to drop a bit!
 
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 29, 2012, 07:03:29 PM
Yes, from the samples I've heard the Serenade is the standout of Stenhammer's opus, and I'd like to get the Jarvi recording, the only one to include the "missing" movement. Just waiting for the price to drop a bit!

Yeah, Serenade is a fine work and Jarvi's performance is fantastic. I still haven't heard anything else from Stenhammar though.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: mc ukrneal on January 30, 2012, 12:39:31 AM
Actually, the Brilliant and BIS sets are different. Brilliant is one disc short of the set from BIS. I never understood this and which is why I never purchased the Brilliant set and the BIS set is out-of-print and expensive. But it's okay, I wanted the Serenade from Jarvi and I got it for a good price used. I'm not too interested in exploring the symphonies and other works just yet. I want to hear this work again before moving on.
How odd. Well thanks for the heads up. I actually have the serenade via a BIS 'sampler' called 5 Nordic Masters (which was cheap on Berkshire at one time). It introduced me to Stenhammar (Serenade+PC #2), Svendsen, Nielson (my only disc of his works, symphonies 4 & 6), Tubin, and Sibelius Symphony #2 (first exposure to this piece). As an intro it was brilliant, seeing as I have gone on to buy much more of Svendsen and Stenhammar. Still not crazy about the Nielson or Tubin, but glad to be exposed to it. Perhaps I will enjoy them more at a future date.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: DieNacht on January 30, 2012, 01:19:29 AM
Who is this Nielson ?

Until I find out, I´ll listen to some Ruccles, Yves, Sing-Sing and Worn-Williamson !   ;)

(signed, of course, a compatriot of Nielsen :D. Even cbs-sony has sometimes called Nielsen "Nielson" on their record covers.)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: mc ukrneal on January 30, 2012, 01:50:15 AM
Who is this Nielson ?

Until I find out, I´ll listen to some Ruccles, Yves, Sing-Sing and Worn-Williamson !   ;)

(signed, of course, a compatriot of Nielsen :D. Even cbs-sony has sometimes called Nielsen "Nielson" on their record covers.)
Thanks for the correction! I think I will never forget how to spell it now!
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: DieNacht on January 30, 2012, 02:05:14 AM
 :D
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: cjvinthechair on January 30, 2012, 02:10:45 AM
Ah, one of the many magnificent Scandinavian composers I'm gradually learning about !
Anyone know anything about the cantata 'Ett Folk' mentioned in the first article ?

Thanks.                       Clive.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Leo K. on February 01, 2012, 07:33:08 AM
Stenhammer's string quartets are fine, and I'm still exploring them but recently got a set of his orchestral works (Jarvi on BIS)...glad this thread was started!

Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 25, 2015, 07:12:51 AM
Time to revive this thread after three years...

I'm really (and I do mean REALLY) impressed with his Symphony No. 2 in G minor. What a symphony! Perhaps one of the greatest Swedish symphonies I've heard. The lyricism and passion in the music are infectious. I believe I may have found my favorite Swede. :) Serenade is certainly another work which should make people's ears perk up. I remember listening to this work for the first-time around 2009 I believe and it was featured on an Andrew Davis Nordic compilation disc on the budget label Apex. This performance really made me want to explore more of Stenhammar's music. Unfortunately, many other musical interests had occurred since that time and it is only now that I'm getting back around to this composer.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on May 25, 2015, 08:12:08 AM
This is the greatest Stenhammar CD known to me; the performance of the Symphony is in a class of its own:

Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 25, 2015, 08:20:21 AM
This is the greatest Stenhammar CD known to me; the performance of the Symphony is in a class of its own:



Yep, I ordered this CD earlier today. 8) I've heard nothing but great things about it.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Archaic Torso of Apollo on May 25, 2015, 08:30:43 AM
Time to revive this thread after three years...

I'm really (and I do mean REALLY) impressed with his Symphony No. 2 in G minor. What a symphony! Perhaps one of the greatest Swedish symphonies I've heard. The lyricism and passion in the music are infectious.

One of the first Naxoses I bought, back in 1997 or so, was their recording of the 2nd Symphony. I still have it and still love it. Very fine symphony indeed.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 25, 2015, 08:38:20 AM
One of the first Naxoses I bought, back in 1997 or so, was their recording of the 2nd Symphony. I still have it and still love it. Very fine symphony indeed.

This must be the recording in question:



It's OOP which is quite odd for a Naxos release (not that it doesn't happen from time to time).
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on May 26, 2015, 08:20:32 AM
Yep, I ordered this CD earlier today. 8) I've heard nothing but great things about it.
You won't regret this John - it is in a class of its own.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 26, 2015, 10:39:10 AM
You won't regret this John - it is in a class of its own.

Good to hear, Jeffrey. I'm ready to hear another performance of this underrated symphony.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 26, 2015, 07:32:21 PM
(http://cdn.naxosmusiclibrary.com/sharedfiles/images/cds/hires/CAP21151.jpg)

Curiosity got the better of me as I went to Spotify just to sample the first movement, Allegro Energico, of the above recording and I was absolutely captivated from start to finish. Yes, the broader approach that Westerberg employs certainly paid dividends to this movement. I didn't want to listen to the rest of the performance as I want to save it for whenever I actually receive the CD, but I absolutely loved what Westerberg has done so far with this magnificent symphony.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on May 27, 2015, 12:38:57 AM
(http://cdn.naxosmusiclibrary.com/sharedfiles/images/cds/hires/CAP21151.jpg)

Curiosity got the better of me as I went to Spotify just to sample the first movement, Allegro Energico, of the above recording and I was absolutely captivated from start to finish. Yes, the broader approach that Westerberg employs certainly paid dividends to this movement. I didn't want to listen to the rest of the performance as I want to save it for whenever I actually receive the CD, but I absolutely loved what Westerberg has done so far with this magnificent symphony.
Told you  8)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 27, 2015, 05:24:47 AM
Told you  8)

Ah, but I had bought this recording before you suggested it to me, Jeffrey, but, yes, you did tell me it was great and you were certainly right. :)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Lisztianwagner on May 27, 2015, 01:25:03 PM
About the 2nd Symphony:

https://www.youtube.com/v/8ey3wdhE1OI

I listened to this work for the first time and I liked it very much. Such a marvelous symphony, very powerful and lyrical; the musical texture is compelling, and the themes well weaved and developed; I loved the colourful contrast among sections, sometimes very intense, lively and energetic, sometimes deep, poetical and even dramatic, especially in the fourth movement, where I also enjoyed the use of pizzicato. The orchestration is beautiful and evocative, particularly the strings and the brass; there's a splendid Nordic atmosphere, not exactly as suggestive and depicting nature as I often perceive in composers like Sibelius, but gorgeous anyway; a Nordic atmosphere merged with a strong German Romantic influence.
I would like to listen to more from Stenhammar, which pieces could you suggest?
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: North Star on May 27, 2015, 02:09:30 PM
I would like to listen to more from Stenhammar, which pieces could you suggest?
Serenade in F major, Op. 31. You might also look into the late piano piece Late Summer, 5 piano pieces, Op. 33.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 27, 2015, 05:37:51 PM
About the 2nd Symphony:

https://www.youtube.com/v/8ey3wdhE1OI

I listened to this work for the first time and I liked it very much. Such a marvelous symphony, very powerful and lyrical; the musical texture is compelling, and the themes well weaved and developed; I loved the colourful contrast among sections, sometimes very intense, lively and energetic, sometimes deep, poetical and even dramatic, especially in the fourth movement, where I also enjoyed the use of pizzicato. The orchestration is beautiful and evocative, particularly the strings and the brass; there's a splendid Nordic atmosphere, not exactly as suggestive and depicting nature as I often perceive in composers like Sibelius, but gorgeous anyway; a Nordic atmosphere merged with a strong German Romantic influence.
I would like to listen to more from Stenhammar, which pieces could you suggest?

Wonderful to read, Ilaria! I agree with every word here. The seamless merging of Nordic and German influences is one thing that makes Stenhammar a unique musical voice. As for where to go next, I would suggest Piano Concerto No. 2 in D minor, Op. 23 and, as Karlo suggested, the Serenade in F major, Op. 31. You can't go wrong with either of these works. For the Piano Concerto No. 2, listen to Ortiz/Jarvi and as for the Serenade, check out Jarvi's performance, which is still the best of the three I've heard. Happy listening! 8)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: The new erato on May 28, 2015, 12:47:57 AM
Ah, but I had bought this recording before you suggested it to me, Jeffrey, but, yes, you did tell me it was great and you were certainly right. :)
I bought this even before you (on LP in the late 70-ies)  :)

My favorite Stenhammar disc, and in superb, state of the art, sound. Need to rebuy it on CD I think.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Lisztianwagner on May 28, 2015, 04:33:28 AM
Serenade in F major, Op. 31. You might also look into the late piano piece Late Summer, 5 piano pieces, Op. 33.
Wonderful to read, Ilaria! I agree with every word here. The seamless merging of Nordic and German influences is one thing that makes Stenhammar a unique musical voice. As for where to go next, I would suggest Piano Concerto No. 2 in D minor, Op. 23 and, as Karlo suggested, the Serenade in F major, Op. 31. You can't go wrong with either of these works. For the Piano Concerto No. 2, listen to Ortiz/Jarvi and as for the Serenade, check out Jarvi's performance, which is still the best of the three I've heard. Happy listening! 8)
Thank you! What about the First Symphony? I read it was a composition strongly influenced by Bruckner, though later it was rejected by Stenhammat himself.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 28, 2015, 05:11:29 AM
I bought this even before you (on LP in the late 70-ies)  :)

My favorite Stenhammar disc, and in superb, state of the art, sound. Need to rebuy it on CD I think.

Well sure, considering you're a: older than me and b: have been listening to classical a lot longer than I have, I would expect this from you at the very least, erato. ;) Yes, you should definitely pick up the Stenhammar Westerberg disc. I'm surprised you haven't bought the CD already.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 28, 2015, 05:14:12 AM
Thank you! What about the First Symphony? I read it was a composition strongly influenced by Bruckner, though later it was rejected by Stenhammat himself.

Stenhammar's Symphony No. 1 is a good work, but not a great one. His 2nd is where his musical personality and own unique style reared it's head. Like Karlo and I suggested, you should head onto the Serenade next. I also think Piano Concerto No. 2 will be right up your alley. :)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: The new erato on May 28, 2015, 05:18:35 AM
Well sure, considering you're a: older than me and b: have been listening to classical a lot longer than I have, I would expect this from you at the very least, erato. ;) Yes, you should definitely pick up the Stenhammar Westerberg disc. I'm surprised you haven't bought the CD already.
Nice to see you young ones picking up!
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 28, 2015, 05:58:42 AM
Nice to see you young ones picking up!

Well, I'd love to see younger people (even younger than me) get into classical music, but this isn't a fantasy world. :) Just imagine if I walked down the street and overheard two 16 year olds discussing the new Stenhammar recording? I would probably faint. ;D
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 28, 2015, 06:39:03 AM
Cross-posted from the "Purchases" thread:

Just bought:

(http://cdn.naxosmusiclibrary.com/sharedfiles/images/cds/hires/BIS-2058.jpg)

Has anyone heard this newer arrival? I listened to a 15 minute preview via NML and was greatly impressed with the rather atmospheric interpretation. A great remedy to Jarvi's already much acclaimed performance (also on BIS).
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Lisztianwagner on May 29, 2015, 05:29:42 AM
About Stenhammar's Serenade:

https://www.youtube.com/v/PbcVo7aq9jo

An absolutely brilliant work, I enjoyed it very much! Such wonderful music, very powerful and passionate, but also elegant and poetical; it has a beautiful orchestration, with expressive timbres, harmonic richness and melodic invention. The colourful contrasts of themes creates an imaginative and suggestive atmosphere, in some way less Nordic and more straussian; I particularly loved a middle section introduced by woodwinds, the musical proceeding is so lively and immersive before bursting out into a climax with loud percussion and being followed by a very lyrical, thrilling theme that suddenly develops into a horns solo and, after a brief little climax, fades aways with the strings. Great composition.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 29, 2015, 05:39:17 AM
About Stenhammar's Serenade:

https://www.youtube.com/v/PbcVo7aq9jo

An absolutely brilliant work, I enjoyed it very much! Such wonderful music, very powerful and passionate, but also elegant and poetical; it has a beautiful orchestration, with expressive timbres, harmonic richness and melodic invention. The colourful contrasts of themes creates an imaginative and suggestive atmosphere, in some way less Nordic and more straussian; I particularly loved a middle section introduced by woodwinds, the musical proceeding is so lively and immersive before bursting out into a climax with loud percussion and being followed by a very lyrical, thrilling theme that suddenly develops into a horns solo and, after a brief little climax, fades aways with the strings. Great composition.

It certainly is a brilliant work, Ilaria. I'm glad you enjoyed it! Check out his piano concerti next.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Lisztianwagner on May 29, 2015, 05:46:09 AM
It certainly is a brilliant work, Ilaria. I'm glad you enjoyed it! Check out his piano concerti next.
Thank you, I'll follow your suggestion.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: The new erato on May 29, 2015, 07:16:44 AM
Cross-posted from the "Purchases" thread:

Has anyone heard this newer arrival? I listened to a 15 minute preview via NML and was greatly impressed with the rather atmospheric interpretation. A great remedy to Jarvi's already much acclaimed performance (also on BIS).
I have it and have heard it, but cannot offer more than that.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 29, 2015, 07:46:13 AM
I have it and have heard it, but cannot offer more than that.

Hmmmm...care to elaborate whenever you get the chance?
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: The new erato on May 29, 2015, 07:53:10 AM
Hmmmm...care to elaborate whenever you get the chance?
I might. Not tonight though.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Moonfish on May 29, 2015, 10:54:28 AM
Well, I'd love to see younger people (even younger than me) get into classical music, but this isn't a fantasy world. :) Just imagine if I walked down the street and overheard two 16 year olds discussing the new Stenhammar recording? I would probably faint. ;D

Hmm,
Have you ever walked down the street and heard anybody discuss a new Stenhammar recording?  >:D
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 29, 2015, 11:13:05 AM
Hmm,
Have you ever walked down the street and heard anybody discuss a new Stenhammar recording?  >:D

Well, I've never walked down the street and heard any composer's music being discussed. :)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Moonfish on May 29, 2015, 11:24:26 AM
Well, I've never walked down the street and heard any composer's music being discussed. :)

 :D
Me neither. Apart from people emerging from a concert hall, but I presume that isn't the same as walking down the street..  ::)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 29, 2015, 11:36:35 AM
:D
Me neither. Apart from people emerging from a concert hall, but I presume that isn't the same as walking down the street..  ::)

Nope. Not the same thing. :) By the way, Peter, do you know any of Stenhammar's music? If no, then remedy that with Symphony No. 2 in G minor whenever you can. 8)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Moonfish on May 29, 2015, 12:48:53 PM
Nope. Not the same thing. :) By the way, Peter, do you know any of Stenhammar's music? If no, then remedy that with Symphony No. 2 in G minor whenever you can. 8)

Yes, but I haven't journeyed through his works for quite a while. I have the Brilliant set as well as some BIS recordings in my piles. I see that you have virtually triggered a Stenhammar listening trend over the last week!  ;D
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 29, 2015, 01:33:34 PM
Yes, but I haven't journeyed through his works for quite a while. I have the Brilliant set as well as some BIS recordings in my piles. I see that you have virtually triggered a Stenhammar listening trend over the last week!  ;D

:D

It's hard to ignore Stenhammar's brilliance as a composer. His unique synthesis of Germanic and Nordic music is truly singular. I'm still in the process of getting to know more of his music, but everything I've heard has never been less than good with some works towering over others.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: 71 dB on May 29, 2015, 11:54:11 PM
Stenhammar!  :P

This damn composer has been haunting in my life for 15 years or so. Long ago I heard his Piano Concerto(s) (which one, both?) on radio. Sounded pretty good. The problem is: I have never bought anything by Stenhammar so he keeps haunting. Every time I try, I get confused and buy something else.

Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on May 30, 2015, 05:06:16 AM
Stenhammar!  :P

This damn composer has been haunting in my life for 15 years or so. Long ago I heard his Piano Concerto(s) (which one, both?) on radio. Sounded pretty good. The problem is: I have never bought anything by Stenhammar so he keeps haunting. Every time I try, I get confused and buy something else.

I don't see how you could get confused about buying any Stenhammar, 71 dB? Anyway, since you're a big Naxos guy, there are plenty of recordings of his music available. Go for it! 8)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: 71 dB on June 11, 2015, 07:48:26 AM
I don't see how you could get confused about buying any Stenhammar, 71 dB? Anyway, since you're a big Naxos guy, there are plenty of recordings of his music available. Go for it! 8)

The Stenhammar CD (Symphony No. 2 on Naxos) arrived today. I just came home and sauna is 15 minutes away so I have to postpone listening the disc.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: 71 dB on June 12, 2015, 11:26:56 AM
The Stenhammar CD (Symphony No. 2 on Naxos) arrived today. I just came home and sauna is 15 minutes away so I have to postpone listening the disc.

Quoting myself. I have heard the disc 3 times now. Nice symphony if not mindblowing. Movements 2 and 4 are the best, especially Finale.  0:)

I think I'll explore Stenhammar more some day, but he is not top priority.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on August 28, 2015, 09:52:46 PM
The current BBC Music Magazine (October) features a fine CD including Stenhammar's Second Symphony (BBC Scottish SO, Hannu Lintu, live 2015 recording).
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: arpeggio on January 19, 2018, 04:45:38 PM
The current BBC Music Magazine (October) features a fine CD including Stenhammar's Second Symphony (BBC Scottish SO, Hannu Lintu, live 2015 recording).

I was rummaging through my BBC Music Magazines saw that I had not listened to the CD.  I am listening to it as I am typing this.  This is some really nice music.  I submitted a post in the "Pieces that have blown you away recently" thread about this music.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 19, 2018, 05:57:05 PM
I was rummaging through my BBC Music Magazines saw that I had not listened to the CD.  I am listening to it as I am typing this.  This is some really nice music.  I submitted a post in the "Pieces that have blown you away recently" thread about this music.

Stenhammar’s 2nd is one of the great Swedish symphonies. I don’t know how that BBC Music Magazine recording is, but I wholly recommend the Westerberg recording of the 2nd. He also wrote some other nice music, especially the Serenade and SQs. Some of his music is rather forgettable (like his 1st symphony and 1st PC), but he’s certainly a composer worth checking out.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: André on January 19, 2018, 07:53:37 PM
The concertos and symphonies have been covered very well, and the string quartets have rightly been mentioned, too. For further exploration of this very sensitive composer I suggest going for these:


(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71pVGu9f2FL._SX522_.jpg)

Neal mentioned this disc before. It’s a most enticing collection of Stenhammar works in different genres. The Song is IMHO his best work. The 2 Sentimental Romances are on the same plane as Reger’s, if a bit less impassioned. Strongly recommended.

Other excellent discs to explore include these:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61sjKu0ylRL.jpg)

A wonderful collection of his songs, with a young von Otter, heard here at her best. Hagegard is excellent too (he was revealed as Papageno in the Ingmar Bergman film and subsequently developed an international career).
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51beI59ELWL.jpg)

A very young Salonen conducts the famous Serenade and the music from Chitra. The swedish rhapsody Midvinter is wonderful, too.


(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81aKaW6VRTL._SX522_.jpg)


I’ve plugged the Ballads disc a couple of times before. It contains a treasure of late romantic vocal ballads, sensitive and bardic by Stenhammar, Peterson-Berger and Rangström. Contents here:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/91dmwfvryRL._SX522_.jpg)

And for a conspectus of his piano music, this Naxos disc is an excellent introduction. The sonata is an important work:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51OZat%2BNXQL.jpg)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on January 23, 2018, 01:27:32 AM
I only really know Symphony 2 which is a wonderful work, especially in the Caprice recording.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: André on January 23, 2018, 09:35:06 AM
My first exposure to Stenhammar was via the LP of symphony # 1 under Järvi/Gothenburg. Found the music pleasant, uneventful, with vast stretches of note spinning. But its brucknerisms (they are there) eventually won me over  :D. That being said, the symphonies may not reveal Stenhammar at his best.

First on a recommendation list would be The Song, of which there are a few recordings. Available at a reasonable price on Amazon uk:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Stenhammar-Song-Sentimental-Romances-Ithaca/dp/B000000UGN/ref=sr_1_7?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1516728579&sr=1-7&keywords=Stenhammar+the+song (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Stenhammar-Song-Sentimental-Romances-Ithaca/dp/B000000UGN/ref=sr_1_7?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1516728579&sr=1-7&keywords=Stenhammar+the+song)

The Brillant set of 3 discs is a good place to start too. Good program, generous timings, cheap price:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/518GH0kbeVL.jpg)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Mirror Image on January 23, 2018, 06:39:15 PM
My first exposure to Stenhammar was via the LP of symphony # 1 under Järvi/Gothenburg. Found the music pleasant, uneventful, with vast stretches of note spinning. But its brucknerisms (they are there) eventually won me over  :D. That being said, the symphonies may not reveal Stenhammar at his best.

Symphony No. 1 isn’t a memorable work, but Symphony No. 2 is a masterpiece, IMHO. Quite possibly the first Swedish symphony that could be classified as such.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: SymphonicAddict on January 23, 2018, 08:33:37 PM
I recall being impressed by the two piano concertos when I listened them some time ago. And yes, the 2nd symphony is a masterpiece. Certainly a strong favorite of mine amongst Nordic works by anyone.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Daverz on January 23, 2018, 10:43:08 PM
I'll go further with the praise for Westerberg's Symphony No. 2.  Järvi is just dull in his 2 recordings.  Stig is the man!

I also love his recording of the Serenade.

Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on January 23, 2018, 11:59:31 PM
My first exposure to Stenhammar was via the LP of symphony # 1 under Järvi/Gothenburg. Found the music pleasant, uneventful, with vast stretches of note spinning. But its brucknerisms (they are there) eventually won me over  :D. That being said, the symphonies may not reveal Stenhammar at his best.

First on a recommendation list would be The Song, of which there are a few recordings. Available at a reasonable price on Amazon uk:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Stenhammar-Song-Sentimental-Romances-Ithaca/dp/B000000UGN/ref=sr_1_7?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1516728579&sr=1-7&keywords=Stenhammar+the+song (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Stenhammar-Song-Sentimental-Romances-Ithaca/dp/B000000UGN/ref=sr_1_7?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1516728579&sr=1-7&keywords=Stenhammar+the+song)

The Brillant set of 3 discs is a good place to start too. Good program, generous timings, cheap price:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/518GH0kbeVL.jpg)

I have this set but need to listen properly to it. Thanks for the encouragement Andre.
 :)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: MN Dave on September 14, 2018, 04:06:00 AM
I need to check out this fellow. Heard a bit of "As You Like It" on the radio this morning and ... liked it. Thanks for this thread.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: SymphonicAddict on September 14, 2018, 09:07:15 PM
I need to check out this fellow. Heard a bit of "As You Like It" on the radio this morning and ... liked it. Thanks for this thread.

Are you familiar with his symphonies and other works? Almost all is compelling. The 2nd Symphony is his magnum opus, others claim that is the Serenade for orchestra in F major.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: MN Dave on September 17, 2018, 07:59:28 AM
Are you familiar with his symphonies and other works? Almost all is compelling. The 2nd Symphony is his magnum opus, others claim that is the Serenade for orchestra in F major.

Thank you.

I heard the symphony last night and it was pleasing enough. I'll have to check out that Serenade.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: SymphonicAddict on September 17, 2018, 11:01:12 AM
Thank you.

I heard the symphony last night and it was pleasing enough. I'll have to check out that Serenade.

Be sure to listen to the string quartets, piano concertos, the Violin Sonata (so lovely), Midvinter and Snöfrid as well. I don't know his piano music, but I suppose it's delectable too.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Roasted Swan on September 17, 2018, 11:52:07 AM
Check out the very new BIS disc from Jarvi of the Cantata "Sangen"



excellent performance and really superb BIS SA-CD sound
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: 71 dB on September 17, 2018, 11:51:01 PM
I listened on Spotify the Naxos disc of Serenade and other stuff. I liked Florez och Blanzeflor, Op. 3, which gave me a bit Elgar-vibes.

Check out the very new BIS disc from Jarvi of the Cantata "Sangen"



excellent performance and really superb BIS SA-CD sound

I'm sure that's the case, but the covert "art" is dull as hell. Looks like the portrait of the CEO of a large bank.  :-X
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: calyptorhynchus on November 13, 2018, 06:42:26 PM
Just listened to the Symphony No.2.... what happens in the finale? three quite good movements and then a bit of activity and suddenly all momentum is lost and not regained.
Quite disappointing :(
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on November 13, 2018, 07:00:20 PM
Just listened to the Symphony No.2.... what happens in the finale? three quite good movements and then a bit of activity and suddenly all momentum is lost and not regained.
Quite disappointing :(

Which recording? The Caprice is the best.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: calyptorhynchus on November 13, 2018, 08:53:04 PM
Yes, the caprice, though as it seems to be a structural problem I imagine all recordings would encounter the problem.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on November 14, 2018, 12:30:04 AM
Yes, the caprice, though as it seems to be a structural problem I imagine all recordings would encounter the problem.

I must listen again but I have to say that I've always greatly enjoyed that symphony.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: André on November 14, 2018, 04:52:53 AM
+1

I recall appreciating the brucknerian tinge of no 1 but I realize I can’t recall the musical specifics of no 2. In the listening pile it goes !
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on May 28, 2019, 06:05:41 AM
Ok, here's my question.
If I have this recording do I need to have the Blomstedt version?
(http://)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: kyjo on May 28, 2019, 02:13:51 PM
Ok, here's my question.
If I have this recording do I need to have the Blomstedt version?
(http://)

Westerberg’s recording is often considered definitive but I enjoyed Blomstedt’s just as much if not more, partly due to the marvelous BIS sonics.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: vandermolen on May 28, 2019, 08:40:38 PM
Westerberg’s recording is often considered definitive but I enjoyed Blomstedt’s just as much if not more, partly due to the marvelous BIS sonics.
Thanks Kyle. Might ask my daughter to get it for me as a b'day present.
 :)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: SymphonicAddict on October 01, 2019, 03:59:22 PM
Some days ago I re-listened to the 2nd Symphony on the Westerberg CD. Incredibly, that day I was less impressed by it, having praised that symphony over the years. In fact, I found the work rather underwhelming. The 1st movement was the one I felt stronger. I know, I'm a sinner.  ::) It could be another problem of overexposure. Or perhaps my tastes are changing. Not sure actually.

Having thought of that experience, today I tried another CD, this time with chamber music:

(https://bis.se/shop/17115/art15/h5795/4445795-origpic-79f328.jpg)

My surprise was superlative. All the works on the CD are really memorable, gracious, lyrical, in an unmistakable Romantic fashion and finely crafted:

Piano sonata in A flat major, Op. 12 (his last one for piano)
Violin sonata in A minor, Op. 19
Allegro ma non tanto for piano trio in A major
Allegro brillante for piano quartet in E flat major

I consider the Piano Sonata the crowning jewel on the CD. It's quite simply superb, tuneful, catchy, imbued with such elegance and spark. Possibly the work for piano trio is the most mainstream one, but even so it's worth listening.

I recommend the content of that CD with some enthusiasm for Romantic music lovers.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: André on October 01, 2019, 04:44:15 PM
Stenhammar’s two symphonies have fine moments but also some longueurs. One could be forgiven for thinking they almost overstay their welcome.

The piano concertos, the string quartets and some of the piano works are very good. Best of all are the cantata The Song, the fine Serenad, the two gorgeous Sentimental Romances for violin, and some of the songs. These are my fave Stenhammar discs:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71pVGu9f2FL._SX522_.jpg)
(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/cd/c9/2b/cdc92b3d5fa561ecb273533c9b4eba34.jpg)
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61JzCXSBXnL.jpg)
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: Florestan on October 01, 2019, 11:21:01 PM
Some days ago I re-listened to the 2nd Symphony on the Westerberg CD. Incredibly, that day I was less impressed by it, having praised that symphony over the years. In fact, I found the work rather underwhelming. The 1st movement was the one I felt stronger. I know, I'm a sinner.  ::) It could be another problem of overexposure. Or perhaps my tastes are changing. Not sure actually.

Having thought of that experience, today I tried another CD, this time with chamber music:

(https://bis.se/shop/17115/art15/h5795/4445795-origpic-79f328.jpg)

My surprise was superlative. All the works on the CD are really memorable, gracious, lyrical, in an unmistakable Romantic fashion and finely crafted:

Piano sonata in A flat major, Op. 12 (his last one for piano)
Violin sonata in A minor, Op. 19
Allegro ma non tanto for piano trio in A major
Allegro brillante for piano quartet in E flat major

I consider the Piano Sonata the crowning jewel on the CD. It's quite simply superb, tuneful, catchy, imbued with such elegance and spark. Possibly the work for piano trio is the most mainstream one, but even so it's worth listening.

I recommend the content of that CD with some enthusiasm for Romantic music lovers.

Thw whole cycle is very worthwile.

Try also his SQs.



Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: SymphonicAddict on October 02, 2019, 10:12:55 AM
Thw whole cycle is very worthwile.

Try also his SQs.

Oh yes! The SQs represent the meat of his chamber music. The No. 3 is the one that comes to my mind immediately with its rustic flavour.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: kyjo on October 18, 2019, 08:55:35 AM
Some days ago I re-listened to the 2nd Symphony on the Westerberg CD. Incredibly, that day I was less impressed by it, having praised that symphony over the years. In fact, I found the work rather underwhelming. The 1st movement was the one I felt stronger. I know, I'm a sinner.  ::) It could be another problem of overexposure. Or perhaps my tastes are changing. Not sure actually.

Overexposed to Stenhammar? Impossible! ;) I almost agree with you about the 2nd Symphony; I think it's a fine work with some great moments (the delightful scherzo and the imposing ending), but in the end it's not exactly emotionally stirring or cathartic; perhaps a bit too restrained to make a bigger impact. I've seen it described several times as "the greatest Swedish symphony" but I enjoy most of Atterberg's, Alfven's 3rd, and Peterson-Berger's 3rd more than it. The Westerberg recording is usually referred to as definitive, but I really enjoyed Blomstedt's recent recording on BIS, which, unsurprisingly, has superb sonics.
Title: Re: Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871-1927)
Post by: SymphonicAddict on October 18, 2019, 11:05:22 AM
Overexposed to Stenhammar? Impossible! ;) I almost agree with you about the 2nd Symphony; I think it's a fine work with some great moments (the delightful scherzo and the imposing ending), but in the end it's not exactly emotionally stirring or cathartic; perhaps a bit too restrained to make a bigger impact. I've seen it described several times as "the greatest Swedish symphony" but I enjoy most of Atterberg's, Alfven's 3rd, and Peterson-Berger's 3rd more than it. The Westerberg recording is usually referred to as definitive, but I really enjoyed Blomstedt's recent recording on BIS, which, unsurprisingly, has superb sonics.

Have you ever heard the fragment of his 3rd Symphony on Chandos? It sounds like it would have been a much more interesting symphony.