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The Music Room => Composer Discussion => Topic started by: jlaurson on March 10, 2015, 11:16:42 AM

Title: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 10, 2015, 11:16:42 AM
I'm putting together all the Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies and would like this to be the thread that collects input, corrections, images, discoveries and the like.

To start out with, here's a list of all those who have recorded the symphonies more than once. * = a set under way but not yet finished.

Abbado
Asahina
Barenboim
Bernstein
Brüggen
Dorati
Fischer*
Furtwängler
Gardiner*
Gielen
Haitink
Iimori
Iwaki
Jansons
Järvi
Jochum
Karajan
Klemperer
Maazel
Mackerras
Masur
Mengelberg
Norrington
Rattle*
Solti
Thielemann
Tilson-Thomas*
Toscanini
Walter


Add Bruno Walter to those who recorded them more than once.

Indeed. NYPh & Columbia Symphony Orchestra, 1942-1953 and 1958-1959 respectively, if I am not mistaken.





Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Holden on March 10, 2015, 11:39:54 AM
Add Bruno Walter to those who recorded them more than once.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 10, 2015, 02:17:01 PM
Walter


Add Bruno Walter to those who recorded them more than once.

Indeed. NYPh & Columbia Symphony Orchestra, 1942-1953 and 1958-1959 respectively, if I am not mistaken.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 11, 2015, 04:42:29 AM
Can it be, that there really are only two Russian Beethoven cycles out there? Fedosseyev and Pletnev? I'm now pushing 180 on my list (which might get reduced once I take piano versions out and potential doubles, like HvK V & VI or Abbado III & IV), and there are oodles of Japanese cycles, old and new, but nothing from the Soviet Union? And only two from Russia? Strange.
What was Melodiya's "standard" Beethoven in the 70s or so? Did they have one cobbled together with different conductors? Or Konwitschny/Dresden from the East German Socialist Brothers? They surely must have had a Beethoven cycle in the catalogue.

Good question. Barshai, as I found out after typing what I typed, was allowed to make a set for Melodiya (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00J587K4C/goodmusicguide-20)... all but the 9th. (Surely it wouldn't have been a problem for the Soviets to re-interpret Schiller as an anti-aristocratic proto-communist message? Apparently the reasons for not recording the 9th are described in the booklet of the set that has appeared recently; it did cross my mind that it might have been political.

I suspect you are right.  Konwitschny... Masur... or Kletzki. Fedosseyev's set even claims that it is the first complete Russian-Orchestra-Russian-Conductor set. (Not that I know one that's only got one of either; Sanderling surely isn't Russian; Kakhidze certainly isn't (in any case not complete)...
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 11, 2015, 04:44:28 AM
Quiz: Who conducted the most commercially released complete LvB cycles?


Well, Karajan did 4, but I can't imagine you would ask if it was that easy.

Correct. :-)

And Karajan did 5, actually, if you count the first video cycle which is all different performances. The second video cycle seems to be the same as the "Gold" cycle... except for at least the last movement of the Ninth... possibly more.

I have to do some work checking out "Jochum 0", as I've dubbed it... but he might come out with 4 cycles (the first cobbled together from wartime recordings from Hamburg and Berlin). Incidentally: His brother recorded a complete LvB Cycle as well!
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: MishaK on March 11, 2015, 12:49:35 PM
Jens,

I believe Schuricht might have two. There is the Conservatoire Paris cycle on EMI and then there is an earlier 1940s cycle cobbled together from live performances with different German and other orchestras (OSR, BPO, Staatskapelle, Berlin, and again Paris Conservatoire). I have 1-7 which was issued on the Memories Schuricht set. I don't know if an 8 or 9 exist from that period or perhaps later with SWR.

M
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 11, 2015, 01:28:48 PM
Jens,

I believe Schuricht might have two. There is the Conservatoire Paris cycle on EMI and then there is an earlier 1940s cycle cobbled together from live performances with different German and other orchestras (OSR, BPO, Staatskapelle, Berlin, and again Paris Conservatoire). I have 1-7 which was issued on the Memories Schuricht set. I don't know if an 8 or 9 exist from that period or perhaps later with SWR.

M

It might take cobbling, but you're onto something. Maybe even three!

For one, Haenssler nearly has one, except spread through their Schuricht Edition and Boxes... all but No.2 & 8

1,3,4,5,6 in Box II (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00925TAKK/goodmusicguide-20),
7,9 in Box I (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000MR9EFS/goodmusicguide-20).

Decca can provide No.2 (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000276K3W/goodmusicguide-20)  They should have an 8th (also VPO), too, but didn't include it in that set for whatever reason.

The releases on Grammofono / Altus duplicate which others, if any?



Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: MishaK on March 11, 2015, 01:41:50 PM
The set on my Memories Schuricht set says:

1 - Städtisches Orchester Berlin - 1941
2 - L'Orchestre de al Suisse Romande - 1946
3 - Berliner Philharmoniker - 1941
4 - Berliner Philharmoniker - 1942
5 - Orchestre du Conservatoire de Paris - 1946
6 - Berliner Philharmoniker - 1943
7 - Berliner Philharmoniker - 1937

Right, I forgot the Decca/VPO 2.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Chris L. on March 11, 2015, 09:47:37 PM
Why not just create a list of all the complete symphonies with the number of asterisks signifying how many times a specific conductor recorded them? That would be less complicated and more informative then doing two separate lists. Also, cycles that have not been completed shouldn't count. There is no absolute guarantee they will be completed by the same conductor. For example, Gieseking never lived to finish his Beethoven Sonata cycle.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: king ubu on March 11, 2015, 11:30:15 PM
Gardiner has a complete one ... not sure why the asterisk there - is he working on a second?
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 13, 2015, 07:14:41 AM
Gardiner has a complete one ... not sure why the asterisk there - is he working on a second?

Yes, that seems to be the case. On the SDG label. So far: 5 & 7 (Carnegie Hall)  (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0090OPC00/goodmusicguide-20) and 2 & 8 (Cadogan Hall) (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00N83U8LM/goodmusicguide-20).
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: king ubu on March 13, 2015, 07:47:05 AM
Now that you mention them, these covers do ring a bell! And in fact, new 7 and 8 by Gardiner .... I guess I should run and buy them!  :)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: San Antone on March 13, 2015, 07:50:18 AM
Yes, that seems to be the case. On the SDG label. So far: 5 & 7 (Carnegie Hall)  (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0090OPC00/goodmusicguide-20) and 2 & 8 (Cadogan Hall) (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00N83U8LM/goodmusicguide-20).

Live performances, correct?
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 13, 2015, 08:09:52 AM
Live performances, correct?

That is correct. Live from Carnegie one, live from Cadogan the other. What other halls with "C" could they hit, to continue the cycle?
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Marc on March 13, 2015, 09:30:07 AM
Concertgebouw.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 13, 2015, 10:04:11 AM
Concertgebouw.

Good one. Amsterdam or Bruges? :-)
Lots of "Concert Halls", if one counts them... (Soul Arts Center, to mention just one)
Conservatoire Royal de Musique
Cologne Philharmonic (if one is creative)
Conservatoire de Luxembourg
Casa da Música, Porto
Cankar Hall, Lubljana
Bristol's Colston Hall
Centennial Concert Hall (Winnipeg)
California Theatre (San Jose)
...I'm not including small or unrealistically big places (Civic Center Chicago, CBS Studios... the like... though Civic Center Des Moines would be the right size. Just not nice enough.)
Collins Center for the Arts (Maine)
Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center (Maryland)
...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_concert_halls
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jlaurson on March 13, 2015, 02:22:37 PM
André Cluytens needs to be added to your list above for complete cycles; a very good one IMHO.

Has he done two? The above list lists only those with multiple or near-multiple or soon-multiple cycles. In my list of complete cycles, I'm nearer 180 than what I've put up here.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: NJ Joe on March 13, 2015, 02:39:42 PM
Yes, that seems to be the case. On the SDG label. So far: 5 & 7 (Carnegie Hall)  (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0090OPC00/goodmusicguide-20) and 2 & 8 (Cadogan Hall) (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00N83U8LM/goodmusicguide-20).

Has anyone heard these? I'm curious...the Gardiner DG set was the first period instrument set I ever bought back when it was released, and it was my favorite set for several years.  But I gradually soured on it and don't care for it much any more.  These days I much prefer Norrington LCP and Immerseel. Just wondering how these performances compare with Gardiner's first cycle.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: aligreto on March 13, 2015, 03:48:40 PM
Has he done two? The above list lists only those with multiple or near-multiple or soon-multiple cycles. In my list of complete cycles, I'm nearer 180 than what I've put up here.

My apologies; I had misread your original post and have now deleted my post  :-[
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 13, 2017, 07:01:41 AM
It's been a couple years, but I've finally put the information I have collected into a preliminary shape of an alphabetical index (with links) of every (?) Beethoven Symphony Cycle ever recorded. (And some that aren't really cycles, but you'll pardon that. Tricky cut-off line and I'd rather be too inclusive than exclusive.)

(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GVYL76wjogc/VPDiG_9HcQI/AAAAAAAAIDs/DjLDsB7X58E/s1600/Beethoven_basic_laurson_600.jpg)

A Survey of Beethoven Symphony Cycles: Alphabetical Index

 (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2016/04/a-survey-of-beethoven-symphony-cycles.html)

Any and all help is much appreciated. Obviously many details are not included in this listing, but will in the final form -- such as soloists of the 9th, choirs, and to which extent some cycles are not complete or cobbled together or partially identical.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: kishnevi on October 13, 2017, 10:49:13 AM
It might be helpful to put in some symbol or other to identify PI sets here,

Speaking of PI sets,  I think you missed



It was just released last month so you don't need to beat yourself up over missing it.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: (: premont :) on October 13, 2017, 12:35:47 PM
(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GVYL76wjogc/VPDiG_9HcQI/AAAAAAAAIDs/DjLDsB7X58E/s1600/Beethoven_basic_laurson_600.jpg)

A Survey of Beethoven Symphony Cycles: Alphabetical Index

 (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2016/04/a-survey-of-beethoven-symphony-cycles.html)

Any and all help is much appreciated.

What happened to Masur?
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 14, 2017, 01:29:45 AM
FIXED / ADDED!

What happened to Masur?

good question. I have two sets in my Excel list... must have been one of those sloppy mistakes transferring into the list. Thanks for catching this.

It might be helpful to put in some symbol or other to identify PI sets here,

Speaking of PI sets,  I think you missed Weil / Tafelmusik

It was just released last month so you don't need to beat yourself up over missing it.

Thank you thank you thank you. Shouldn't have missed that... I translated some of those booklets. (1-4) But yes, it hadn't been finished by then.

PI-Identifier might be interesting -- but in the real overview (with covers and much more information; recording dates, singers et al.), mention will be made. Might get tricky with hybrid-sets... but I suppose one could limit one to true HIP.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: david johnson on October 15, 2017, 12:59:19 AM
Felix Weingartner/VPO was the first complete set ever recorded...I think.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: mc ukrneal on October 15, 2017, 02:32:47 AM
It's been a couple years, but I've finally put the information I have collected into a preliminary shape of an alphabetical index (with links) of every (?) Beethoven Symphony Cycle ever recorded. (And some that aren't really cycles, but you'll pardon that. Tricky cut-off line and I'd rather be too inclusive than exclusive.)

(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GVYL76wjogc/VPDiG_9HcQI/AAAAAAAAIDs/DjLDsB7X58E/s1600/Beethoven_basic_laurson_600.jpg)

A Survey of Beethoven Symphony Cycles: Alphabetical Index

 (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2016/04/a-survey-of-beethoven-symphony-cycles.html)

Any and all help is much appreciated. Obviously many details are not included in this listing, but will in the final form -- such as soloists of the 9th, choirs, and to which extent some cycles are not complete or cobbled together or partially identical.
Doesn't matter much, but there is re-issue of some sort for the Bernstein DG coming out later this year.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 15, 2017, 08:55:18 AM
Doesn't matter much, but there is re-issue of some sort for the Bernstein DG coming out later this year.

to the contrary! I'm always trying to keep up with the latest re-issues. May not matter much for the Alphabetical index -- but does for the more thorough survey I'm working on.

Meanwhile: ADDED both Masurs (which I forgot to copy over), added R.Fruhbeck de Burgos, Celibidache will be added soon... and a few others. Thanks again for every hint and help.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: kishnevi on October 15, 2017, 05:57:57 PM
Re Klemperer
I have this


Which Membran stitched together from various performances, at least some of which are those included in the M&A set (1,2,6,8)--and on inspection the Fifth and Seventh are from the Philharmonia cycle.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Jo498 on October 16, 2017, 12:19:33 AM
I would not call the Membran patchwork a "cycle". 5 and 7 are, as far as I see, not from the slightly later complete EMI cycle but 1955 (EMI studio) recordings. 3,4 and 9 are live from Cologne (1954 and '58, with the Cologne Radio Orchestra), the rest are live from Vienna 1960 (with the Philharmonia). I don't know if there was a complete cycle preserved from these Vienna concerts.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Christo on October 16, 2017, 12:55:25 AM
Good one. Amsterdam or Bruges? :-)
Haarlem! https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philharmonie_Haarlem  ;)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 16, 2017, 01:57:51 AM
Good one. Amsterdam or Bruges? :-)
Haarlem! https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philharmonie_Haarlem  ;)

I would not call the Membran patchwork a "cycle". 5 and 7 are, as far as I see, not from the slightly later complete EMI cycle but 1955 (EMI studio) recordings. 3,4 and 9 are live from Cologne (1954 and '58, with the Cologne Radio Orchestra), the rest are live from Vienna 1960 (with the Philharmonia). I don't know if there was a complete cycle preserved from these Vienna concerts.

Yes -- I think inclusion of legitimate cycles where there are such ones available (Klemperer's studio and Vienna cycles, in that case) makes it easy to ignore this one. (I also like to boycott that particular label, because of its shady business practices... but I suppose I wouldn't make that an overriding factor if they had to offer something that genuinely needed including.) That said, I have included many cycles where that's really stretching the meaning of the word. Especially historic releases on "Memories".

Meanwhile, I've added Celi and will add Keilberth soon; realized late that I've even had that cycle in my hand, briefly, before deciding against a purchase.



(For newcomers to this thread: This is what it's currently about)
Quote
It's been a couple years, but I've finally put the information I have collected into a preliminary shape of an alphabetical index (with links) of every (?) Beethoven Symphony Cycle ever recorded. (And some that aren't really cycles, but you'll pardon that. Tricky cut-off line and I'd rather be too inclusive than exclusive.)

(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GVYL76wjogc/VPDiG_9HcQI/AAAAAAAAIDs/DjLDsB7X58E/s1600/Beethoven_basic_laurson_600.jpg)

A Survey of Beethoven Symphony Cycles: Alphabetical Index

 (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2016/04/a-survey-of-beethoven-symphony-cycles.html)

Any and all help is much appreciated. Obviously many details are not included in this listing, but will in the final form -- such as soloists of the 9th, choirs, and to which extent some cycles are not complete or cobbled together or partially identical.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: ritter on October 16, 2017, 02:50:34 AM
....
Meanwhile, I've added Celi and will add Keilberth soon; realized late that I've even had that cycle in my hand, briefly, before deciding against a purchase.

(http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=24054.0;attach=52579;image)
Good day, Jens. Thanks for the work in updating this (very useful) survey.

Justy one question: Is that Keilberth a complete set? I thought symphonies No. 4, 8 and 9 were missing...

Regards,
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 16, 2017, 02:53:07 AM
Good day, Jens. Thanks for the work in updating this (very useful) survey.

Justy one question: Is that Keilberth a complete set? I thought symphonies No. 4, 8 and 9 were missing...

Regards,

Cheers! Keilberth is NOT complete: Symphony No. 9 is missing. (4 & 8 are part of it). It's split across three orchestras: Hamburg (4 Sys.), Bamberg (3 Sys. & Overtures), and Berlin Phil. (4th & Overtures).
When Telefunken originally released the set (you may be referring to that), they combined Keilberth's performances with those of Erich Kleiber to make it a complete set.
However, if one really wanted to, one could complete this with a Keilberth performance by adding his NHK SO Tokyo 9th. (King Records)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: ritter on October 16, 2017, 02:55:57 AM
Cheers! Keilberth is NOT complete: Symphony No. 9 is missing. (4 & 8 are part of it). It's split across three orchestras: Hamburg (4 Sys.), Bamberg (3 Sys. & Overtures), and Berlin Phil. (4th & Overtures).
When Telefunken originally released the set (you may be referring to that), they combined Keilberth's performances with those of Erich Kleiber to make it a complete set.
However, if one really wanted to, one could complete this with a Keilberth performance by adding his NHK SO Tokyo 9th. (King Records)
Thanks! Very useful.  :)

This set is rather elusive. The Japanese releases are IIRC on the expensive side, and the cheap Ultima reissues are not that easy to find. I am keeping an eye on it... ;)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 16, 2017, 03:45:55 AM
Thanks! Very useful.  :)

This set is rather elusive. The Japanese releases are IIRC on the expensive side, and the cheap Ultima reissues are not that easy to find. I am keeping an eye on it... ;)

if you follow the link on the index (just fixed; or this one (http://a-fwd.to/1CyPIoN)), you should get a fairly reasonably priced amazon listing. (~40,-, depending on which market you are in.)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: kishnevi on October 16, 2017, 05:09:35 AM
I would not call the Membran patchwork a "cycle". 5 and 7 are, as far as I see, not from the slightly later complete EMI cycle but 1955 (EMI studio) recordings. 3,4 and 9 are live from Cologne (1954 and '58, with the Cologne Radio Orchestra), the rest are live from Vienna 1960 (with the Philharmonia). I don't know if there was a complete cycle preserved from these Vienna concerts.

The complete Vienna cycle was issued by Music & Arts in 2011. It is on Jens's list.  The current Klemperer Beethoven set on Warner includes both the 1955 and 1959 studio recordings.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Jo498 on October 16, 2017, 05:14:30 AM
Right, so the Documents is basically "parasitic" on the Vienna M&A with some fillers from elsewhere (probably to make the piracy not too obvious...). The mid-50s EMI were not a cycle but 3,5,7 only, AFAIK.
I don't know if there is a complete cycle live from Cologne in the WDR archives.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 17, 2017, 12:50:17 AM
fixed some links (Mengelberg), added Matacic (!) & Celi.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on October 17, 2017, 10:58:30 PM
Added Philippe Jordan. Started on the proper survey which will include a sortable table.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Brian on July 23, 2019, 10:47:03 AM
The new Adam Fischer/Danish Chamber Orchestra cycle on Naxos is f*%)@!in' WEIRD, man.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 23, 2019, 11:02:44 AM
The new Adam Fischer/Danish Chamber Orchestra cycle on Naxos is f*%)@!in' WEIRD, man.

Weird good...or weird bad?

Sarge
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Brian on July 23, 2019, 11:16:35 AM
Weird good...or weird bad?

Sarge
Jury's still out, here. I've listened to three or four of the symphonies and so far I mostly stare at the player with a shocked face. He does all sorts of not-notated playing around with dynamics, note length, instrumentation (like having the theme of Eroica's finale played by string quartet only), sudden changes in tempo.

In the booklet, Fischer explains that he's kinda been converted to an almost anti-HIP point of view.

“You can compare the conductor to a modern-day stage director. A stage director asks himself, “What
should I do with this old play? Should I try to visualize how the playwright would have done it today
and try to understand what he wanted to say? This is the philosophy of a stage director as it is the
philosophy of the conductor.”

“It is impossible to listen to music from the beginning of the 19th century today and really understand
what it felt like to hear it for the first time.”

“When playing Beethoven, Mozart or Haydn, it is not enough to play it on original instruments or try to
play exactly as our research indicates that they did back then. It would not, to the same extent, move a
contemporary audience emotionally, because in the meantime our ears have changed, and so have the
things we can fantasize and dream about. I need to play the notes in such a way that we can recreate
the feelings of the listeners which Beethoven would have wanted to invoke in his audience, rather than
playing it exactly how he wanted it to sound.”

so, i.e., if people were initially super shocked by a passage, then Fischer's goal is to make it shocking to us, today, by reinterpreting it.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 23, 2019, 11:34:34 AM
so, i.e., if people were initially super shocked by a passage, then Fischer's goal is to make it shocking to us, today, by reinterpreting it.

Sounds like painting a mustache on the Mona Lisa or something close to Glenn Gould's deconstructing Mozart and Beethoven sonatas.

Sarge
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Brian on July 23, 2019, 11:47:38 AM
Looks like someone has uploaded the cycle to YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V30U3dp_Ens&list=PLZgDvxgjzgXY_CgZrmNdj52cpCgB-aoAf&index=30), legally or not, so you can sample your way through. I linked to 8/i, but they should all appear on the sidebar.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 23, 2019, 12:01:49 PM
Looks like someone has uploaded the cycle to YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V30U3dp_Ens&list=PLZgDvxgjzgXY_CgZrmNdj52cpCgB-aoAf&index=30), legally or not, so you can sample your way through. I linked to 8/i, but they should all appear on the sidebar.

Thanks. I'll check it out later.

Sarge
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Gurn Blanston on July 23, 2019, 04:23:29 PM
The new Adam Fischer/Danish Chamber Orchestra cycle on Naxos is f*%)@!in' WEIRD, man.

I enjoyed the 9th. It is closer to Zinman than anyone else I can think of, but that's fine: I like Zinman! :)

I heard the 8th on a streaming radio programme, it is much the same as the 9th, very brisk tempi, for sure.

8)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: amw on July 23, 2019, 08:37:32 PM
From my experience so far it's very much like the Emmanuel Krivine/Chambre Philharmonique recording: Beethoven symphonies played as though they were Stravinsky's Rite of Spring. I definitely have nothing against this approach but I'm not yet sure how well the recordings will stand up to repeat listening, or the various other recordings that use this approach (don't know Zinman's symphonies but his piano concertos definitely fit here).
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on July 23, 2019, 10:54:20 PM
Sounds like painting a mustache on the Mona Lisa or something close to Glenn Gould's deconstructing Mozart and Beethoven sonatas.

Sarge

I must say that No.1 is an amazing performance; I'm only two discs in... but it's very promising, so far. Definitely "good weird", if "weird" is the right word. I'm beginning to come around on Adam Fischer in a big way. (The RING in Budapest helped, too... as did his Mozart Cycle with the Danish CO.)

And then wait until you get the Ninth with a counter tenor for an alto. :-)

("We don't cast gender. We cast a VOICE.")


ALSO:


Karajan’s 1970s Beethoven In Blu-ray Audio: A Controversial Set Revisited
(https://pbs.twimg.com/media/D_hXRMOWwAAzyZq.jpg) (https://www.classicstoday.com/review/karajans-1970s-beethoven-in-blu-ray-audio-a-controversial-set-revisited/)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Wanderer on July 23, 2019, 11:01:30 PM
so, i.e., if people were initially super shocked by a passage, then Fischer's goal is to make it shocking to us, today, by reinterpreting it.

It sounds like a recipe for disaster.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 23, 2019, 11:17:15 PM
Quote from: Adam Fischer
“It is impossible to listen to music from the beginning of the 19th century today and really understand
what it felt like to hear it for the first time.”

“When playing Beethoven, Mozart or Haydn, it is not enough to play it on original instruments or try to
play exactly as our research indicates that they did back then. It would not, to the same extent, move a
contemporary audience emotionally, because in the meantime our ears have changed, and so have the
things we can fantasize and dream about..”

I've been making these points for years.  :D
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on July 24, 2019, 12:09:14 AM
I've been making these points for years.  :D

I know... I've read it and figured: WAIT. NOW someone says it? It's what the best opera directors and very few music directors (Enoch zu Guttenberg, mainly!) have been saying... but I'd never heard it from a mainstream conductor... and certainly not one as astoundingly unflamboyant as Fischer. And he's absolutely right, of course.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: (: premont :) on July 24, 2019, 02:03:33 AM
I've been making these points for years.  :D

You (and Fischer) are generalizing too much. Your attitude may apply to the general relatively uneducated listener, but it is possible with training and an open mind to learn to appreciate the efforts of the HIP movement and eventually to get to love them.

Some examples:

Period instruments may be unfamiliar in the first hand and one may think they are imperfect and primitive, but with repeated exposure they become familiar and one may learn to understand, that the music was written to suit these instruments. Take e.g. the second Brandenburg concerto. Modern instruments completely spoil the delicate balance between the four soloists (making the piece a kind of trumpet concerto). With period instruments the balance is natural and perfect.

It is also possible with training to learn to appreciate other tunings (mean tone, modified mean tone) so that they do not sound out of tune in ones ear, and to learn to appreciate the special seasoning these tunings add to the music.

No HIP-ster would make the claim that a precise copy of how the music might have sounded in earlier ages is sought after - everyone knows this is completely impossible, but with period instruments, period tuning and informed interpretation some of us think we are better able to understand the music and to enjoy it. This has nothing to do with romanticism, unless you consider all interest in history to be an expression of romanticism. Humans are interested in history first and foremost in order to learn from it.

Of course you (and Fischer) will continue to make your points in the years to come, but that is another history.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 24, 2019, 02:24:56 AM
My main contention is not that much about instruments but about the idea that anybody alive today is able to experience music written centuries ago like people back then experienced it. This is downright impossible no matter how old the instruments or how historically informed the performance --- for the simple reason that how we hear music depends not only on how it sounds but also on the whole set of cultural, social and religious values, conventions and assumptions that define our environment, and the set today is vastly, radically and utterly different than it was in Bach's or in Beethoven's time (and theirs were already different ones). That is all.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Mandryka on July 24, 2019, 02:26:52 AM
Quote
It [HIP] would not, to the same extent, move a
contemporary audience emotionally, because . . .  the
things we can fantasize and dream about [have changed].”

A couple of weeks ago I was with some friends and the topic for discussion was whether we have a place for heroes now. The hero -- the person who, finding the world inconsistent with his values, desires, aspirations, fights to change the world, and wins the fight. That sort of archetype may seem to no longer have a place in the world post Kafka. No matter how much Joseph K struggles, he'll never find the way in to the castle, the world is too strong, to intransigent.

Anyway, seeing that point by Adam Fischer, I was reminded of this conversation, and my own ill at ease with middle period Beethoven, the so called promethean Beethoven.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: (: premont :) on July 24, 2019, 02:42:38 AM
My main contention is not that much about instruments but about the idea that anybody alive today is able to experience music written centuries ago like people back then experienced it. This is downright impossible..
I have never claimed anything like that. But HIP helps me to understand the music better. Of course I shall never be able to understand it fully, i.e. in the way it was understood in its own time.

What I also object to, is that you use your points to detract from HIP. Actually it seems to me, that you have misunderstood the purpose and aim of HIP. It looks as if you are reproducing Taruskin. But he is outdated - the philosophy of HIP has changed since he wrote his pamphlets about this topic. When we admit, that we cannot reproduce the music 100% as it was played in former times, why should anybody then claim he was able to experience the music as they did back then?
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: jwinter on July 24, 2019, 04:02:09 AM
ALSO:


Karajan’s 1970s Beethoven In Blu-ray Audio: A Controversial Set Revisited
(https://pbs.twimg.com/media/D_hXRMOWwAAzyZq.jpg) (https://www.classicstoday.com/review/karajans-1970s-beethoven-in-blu-ray-audio-a-controversial-set-revisited/)

Intersting read, thanks for sharing.  I agree with a lot of that, actually.  Karajan's 70s set was the first cycle I heard.  Having "imprinted" on it as a young man, I suppose it had a large influence on my taste in Beethoven thereafter, though I haven't relistened to it in a very long while.  I've come to prefer an orchestral sound that isn't quite so polished and smooth for these works, but I agree with the reviewer that the 7th is thrilling, and the 5th from this set is still my personal favorite after all these years.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 24, 2019, 04:27:41 AM
I linked to 8/i, but they should all appear on the sidebar.

Thanks I listened to 8 this morning and have been comparing it to some of my favorites (Klemp, Szell, Lenny, the HIPster Norrington). While I didn't dislike Fischer--enjoyed it for the most part--I also found faults. His first movement is simply too fast, even though I love Norrington (and he's only 20 seconds slower in this movement but for some reason he doesn't seem rushed.) The Sacre-like (Lenny's description) long Fortissimo with the Triple Forté climax at the end of the development isn't nearly as powerful as Szell and Norrington (who really does give us shock and awe here with prominent, dissonant-sounding horns and sharp accents).

In any case, I'll continue to listen to Fischer (heard the Ninth already). I do like the sound. Thanks again for the YouTube link.

Sarge
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 24, 2019, 04:35:18 AM
And then wait until you get the Ninth with a counter tenor for an alto. :-)

Ack!!!! Not a bargain-counter tenor! I was not impressed with Fischer's Ninth. Moving on to the First now.

Sarge
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: DaveF on July 24, 2019, 06:05:30 AM
so, i.e., if people were initially super shocked by a passage, then Fischer's goal is to make it shocking to us, today, by reinterpreting it.

Shocking?  You want shocking?:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-2vd1Yz6xQ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-2vd1Yz6xQ)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Biffo on July 24, 2019, 06:10:09 AM
Shocking?  You want shocking?:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-2vd1Yz6xQ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-2vd1Yz6xQ)

That isn't shocking, it's just kitsch.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: JBS on July 24, 2019, 06:27:15 AM

ALSO:


Karajan’s 1970s Beethoven In Blu-ray Audio: A Controversial Set Revisited
(https://pbs.twimg.com/media/D_hXRMOWwAAzyZq.jpg) (https://www.classicstoday.com/review/karajans-1970s-beethoven-in-blu-ray-audio-a-controversial-set-revisited/)

I think (having heard all four of his cycles now) I prefer this one to the other three, although the 1980s cycle gives it a close run.
That said, to someone not really into classical music, but looking for a basic presentation of the music, the 1960s cycle might be the best option.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Marc on July 24, 2019, 06:55:42 AM
I've been making these points for years.  :D

Fischer's quotes mean nothing to me, really. That's why I tend to skip quotes from performers more and more. Booklets and websites are filled with them, but I just listen to the result. If I like the result, then it's OK to me. And if it's OK to me, then I like it. ;)
No matter if they support 'HIP' or not, many performers seem to be talking as if they speak on behalf of 'all' sensible music lovers and connaisseurs who all apparently have the same ears. Well, they just don't. We're all individuals and we're all different. Apart from me, of course.

I listened to some short Fischer episodes on YouTube and my first impressions are: OK to me. ;) Yes, I might like it!
So… his music making seems to be more interesting than his comments about 'us, sensible 21st century classical music listeners'.
I probably won't buy the set though… I'm not a true collector of these works (yet I have more than a dozen sets alreay, I admit :-[.)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 24, 2019, 08:03:20 AM
A couple of weeks ago I was with some friends and the topic for discussion was whether we have a place for heroes now. The hero -- the person who, finding the world inconsistent with his values, desires, aspirations, fights to change the world, and wins the fight. That sort of archetype may seem to no longer have a place in the world post Kafka. No matter how much Joseph K struggles, he'll never find the way in to the castle, the world is too strong, to intransigent.

Anyway, seeing that point by Adam Fischer, I was reminded of this conversation, and my own ill at ease with middle period Beethoven, the so called promethean Beethoven.

This, sort of.

I just listen to the result. If I like the result, then it's OK to me. And if it's OK to me, then I like it. ;)
No matter if they support 'HIP' or not, many performers seem to be talking as if they speak on behalf of 'all' sensible music lovers and connaisseurs who all apparently have the same ears. Well, they just don't. We're all individuals and we're all different.

And this, absolutely.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Jo498 on July 24, 2019, 08:07:34 AM
Zinman is very straightforward and fast (no tempo changes) but he also has the solo strings in the first Eroica finale variations and some odd ornaments e.g. in the 2nd symphony's larghetto. Supposedly all this is based on the most recent critical edition by Del Mar.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Jo498 on July 24, 2019, 08:12:43 AM
I think (having heard all four of his cycles now) I prefer this one to the other three, although the 1980s cycle gives it a close run.
That said, to someone not really into classical music, but looking for a basic presentation of the music, the 1960s cycle might be the best option.
Why do you find the 60s a better "basic presentation" but the later ones superior? In which ways?
(I only know the 60s)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: André on July 24, 2019, 08:27:47 AM
Zinman is very straightforward and fast (no tempo changes) but he also has the solo strings in the first Eroica finale variations and some odd ornaments e.g. in the 2nd symphony's larghetto. Supposedly all this is based on the most recent critical edition by Del Mar.

There’s also a quasi cadenza from the oboe in the middle of the fifth symphony’s first movement. Apparently that sort of thing was common in 1800. Maybe, I don’t know. In any case, I like Zinman’s Beethoven.

I listened to 9 complete movements and sampled all the others from the Fischer cycle (thanks for the youtube links  ;)). I found it sometimes very good (the thunderstorm in the Pastorale), but mostly annoying, with a severely understated dynamic range (Toy Story Beethoven) and mostly suffocated allegros. It’s like the orchestra scrambles as long as it can while holding its collective breath. Moments of rythmic or dynamic expansion are as rare as Pope poop. I was reminded of this scene where Scarlett holds her breath (and the bedpost) to fit into her corset:

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_8RdXEXvy0Q8/TOJhANdlApI/AAAAAAAABs0/p8C74PV32i4/s1600/69291.jpg)

Needless to say, it didn’t work. Anyhow, I like it when an interpretation is thought-provoking. Even if I disagree, it makes me think of how I really like the music to go, and why.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Mandryka on July 24, 2019, 08:50:04 AM
Fischer says something really striking in the booklet, this

Quote
" I need to play the notes in such a way that we can recreate
the feelings of the listeners which Beethoven would have wanted to invoke in his audience, rather than
playing it exactly how he wanted it to sound. . . . I need to find out why a piece of music was written. It is not sufficient to merely follow Beethoven’s
instructions, as this may not suffice to convince the orchestra and the audience. I have to feel it in my
body why it was so important to him. And not only that, I have to want what he wanted, make his will
my own.”

Music as invocation. Not arbitrary invocation, but the invocation which the composer aimed for.

And music making as recreation.

And how can you find out what he wanted to "invoke" without historical research? How can you recreate what Beethoven aimed at invoking without letting your performance be guided by what Beethoven intended?  He's not saying he has magic powers and can communicate with Beethoven directly through ouija. He's much more HIP that people are saying.

He thinks his role is to want what the composer wanted, because he's found that this is the best way of getting the commitment of the musicians and the audience's support. The conductor has to believe in what he's doing, and he has to be informed to know the composer's intentions and he has to be flexible enough to embrace those intentions. He's the composer's advocate now.

It's a bit like a lawyer saying that the most successful defence is one where you believe in the innocence of the defendant. It's like he thinks that the conductor is a bit like Beethoven's advocate today.

Let me tell you something. I've been to a performance of the St Matthew Passion by Adam Fischer. It used modern instruments, but it did something ultra-hip. He believed that Bach would have expected the audience to join in the chorales, so the audience was asked to arrive half an hour before the start of the performance so he could rehears us in singing the chorales, and we all sang along in the concert. He gave us a little welcoming introduction, got us all onside, he said that he believed that it was great music and that to appreciate it more fully we should have an active role etc, and that he wanted our experience now to be similar to Bach's audience's experience then. This is maybe touching on what invocation is.

And what could be more HIP that that?


Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Jo498 on July 24, 2019, 09:14:20 AM
You are still lacking the Good Friday sermon for the real HIP experience!
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 24, 2019, 09:56:41 AM
I've been to a performance of the St Matthew Passion by Adam Fischer. It used modern instruments, but it did something ultra-hip. He believed that Bach would have expected the audience to join in the chorales, so the audience was asked to arrive half an hour before the start of the performance so he could rehears us in singing the chorales, and we all sang along in the concert. He gave us a little welcoming introduction, got us all onside, he said that he believed that it was great music and that to appreciate it more fully we should have an active role etc, and that he wanted our experience now to be similar to Bach's audience's experience then. This is maybe touching on what invocation is.

And what could be more HIP that that?

Did JS Bach gave the audience a little welcoming introduction, got them all onside, he said that he believed that it was great music and that to appreciate it more fully they should have an active role etc?

If yes, then it's as HIP as it gets. If no, then it's as modern as it gets. Somehow i suyspect that the latter is the case.  ;D
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Jo498 on July 24, 2019, 10:29:58 AM
There’s also a quasi cadenza from the oboe in the middle of the fifth symphony’s first movement. Apparently that sort of thing was common in 1800. Maybe, I don’t know. In any case, I like Zinman’s Beethoven.
I skipped his 5-8, so I have not heard the additional oboe figurations. I do doubt that Beethoven was expecting additional ornaments (except maybe in some concerto passages). That famous oboe passage should certainly not be extended as it is more like very brief "recitativo" in the middle of this dramatic movement. Zinman is pretty good in 1,2 and 4 but I am not a fan of his 3 and 9. Too lightweight and without the colors of the old instruments that make somewhat similar HIP more attractive. Overall apart from the additional trill and solos, Zinman seems to have basically one idea, namely to drive everything as fast as possible.

Quote
I listened to 9 complete movements and sampled all the others from the Fischer cycle (thanks for the youtube links  ;)). I found it sometimes very good (the thunderstorm in the Pastorale), but mostly annoying, with a severely understated dynamic range (Toy Story Beethoven) and mostly suffocated allegros.
Could the restricted dynamic range be an artifact of the yt upload quality?
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Mandryka on July 24, 2019, 10:39:25 AM
One thing that underlies what Fischer says. He thinks that music isn't sound, he thinks it's idea.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: André on July 24, 2019, 11:01:15 AM

Could the restricted dynamic range be an artifact of the yt upload quality?

I don’t think so, as there are some passages where the orchestra (of chamber proportions, meaning fewer strings) wells up to real ff level, as in the Pastorale’s Thunderstorm, or the seventh symphony’s first and last movements. The finale of the fifth, and particularly its long coda - where all stops should be pulled - is very disappointing in terms of dynamics. You can clearly hear the usually buried piccolo in the last chord, but so can you in Villem de Vriends’ Netherlands S.O. version, which packs a lot more decibels.

There are contemporaneous accounts of the composer conducting the orchestra in bizarre fashion, crouching to indicate pianissimos and jumping with arms extended at fortissimos. It doesn’t tell us how much sound he wanted, but it certainly gives an indication that he wanted big contrasts and maximum expression.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 24, 2019, 11:08:51 AM
There are contemporaneous accounts of the composer conducting the orchestra in bizarre fashion, crouching to indicate pianissimos and jumping with arms extended at fortissimos. It doesn’t tell us how much sound he wanted, but it certainly gives an indication that he wanted big contrasts and maximum expression.

As per Spohr, who is the main source of those "contemporaneous accounts", it gives an indication about Beethoven's eccentricity with respect to the conducting practice of his time --- and by extrapolation, to that of our time too. Anyone conducting today the same way as Beethoven did would be hissed off the stage as a charlatan. Just read the relevant passages in Spohr's Autobiography.  ;D
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on July 24, 2019, 11:30:49 AM
I think (having heard all four of his cycles now) I prefer this one to the other three, although the 1980s cycle gives it a close run.
That said, to someone not really into classical music, but looking for a basic presentation of the music, the 1960s cycle might be the best option.

I know what you mean, I think. (It's the one that might have the least "Karajan" about it, but plenty excitement. Although for someone not really into classical music, any of them will be good enough, because all are pretty darn good.  :D

Meanwhile, you know that there are seven (!) Karajan cycles, right?
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 24, 2019, 12:26:54 PM
The irony --- or paradox --- of it all is that the young, and early, Beethoven was a socialite who relished, and was more than welcome into, the  world of aristocratic patronage, just as Haydn and Mozart were before him. It's only with the onset of his deafness, and especially after its firm grip on him, that he became the grumpy and scruffy curmudgeon we all know from more or less accurate descriptions. He was forced to become a hero because of his condition --- one that few, if any, other people experienced. A composer gone deaf! --- only a genius (and only a one-time genius) as Beethoven could have managed to cope with it (pace Smetana who, for all his virtues, can't hold a candle to Beethoven). And he coped with it big time! But, but, but --- at the same time he coped with his deafness big time, he also (unwittingly, I'm sure) set the bar so high that no normally constituted human being could have followed him. Now, keep in mind that a "normally constituted human being", or rather a collection of such beings, were the targeted audience of all composers before him. Pre-Beethoven (meaning, pre-deaf Beethoven), music was a social affair, be it in the form of opera, or a public concert, or a private salon --- anyhow and anywhere the premium was on the social function of music as an entertaining and pleasant pastime.  Post-Beethoven (meaning, post-deaf Beethoven) music become more and more a solitary pursuit ("an exercise in shared solitude"), eschewing more and more any notion of social entertaining and pleasure, and becoming more and  more elitist and "Brahmin", to the point of asking "Who Cares if You Listen?" --- to which the audiences worldwide, great unwashed as they were, responded loudly and resoundly --- "Who Cares if You Compose?"

Bottom line, I don't hold Beethoven himself responsible for the deleterious influence his music had on subsequent generations of composers --- yet I much prefer composers who eschewed heroism and Napoleonism in favor of intimacy and private feelings --- such as Schubert, Chopin, Mendelssohn, Schumann and Grieg --- all of them treading in the steps of Mozart.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Mandryka on July 24, 2019, 12:53:30 PM
Pre-Beethoven (meaning, pre-deaf Beethoven), music was a social affair, be it in the form of opera, or a public concert, or a private salon --- anyhow and anywhere the premium was on the social function of music as an entertaining and pleasant pastime. 

I think you're underestimating  Froberger's Ricercar's, and Charles Mouton's suites and St Colombe's suites and Michelangelo Galilei's intavolatura and Costanzo Festa's contrapunti and  . . .
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 24, 2019, 12:58:15 PM
I think you're underestimating  Froberger's Ricercar's, and Charles Mouton's suites and St Colombe's suites and . . .

Probably, possibly... but in this respect there's nothing like the 19th Century Piano Music --- THE private music par excellence.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Mandryka on July 24, 2019, 01:00:30 PM
Probably, possibly... but in this respect there's nothing like the 19th Century Piano Music --- THE private music par excellence.
I think you're wrong, and that much solo viol music, for example, was private, a lot of lute music too. Something happened around the mid c18 which made music more about pleasurable easy diversion, a way of escaping, possibly the influence of Versailles. In my opinion Beethoven was still caught up with this idea, it's not meant to be challenging and when it was, like in op 133, he was quick to dump it. Music never got over this until Webern and Schoenberg.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: JBS on July 24, 2019, 05:39:20 PM
Why do you find the 60s a better "basic presentation" but the later ones superior? In which ways?
(I only know the 60s)

Karajan 60 is close to the mean in interpretation, but just enough better to allow it to be a sort of standard. But I find what he did in the other two cycles to please my ears more. IOW de gustibus...

My own preferred set overall btw is Chailly/Gewandhuaus.


Meanwhile, you know that there are seven (!) Karajan cycles, right?

Checks the Ionarts survey...
Two are on DVD, so I don't count them. If I ever knew about the Tokyo one, I forgot it. I pretty sure I never heard a note of it.

I have a Karajan Ninth on DVD. It might be from the Unitel cycle. TBH, the chorus was filmed in a way that turned them into synchronized robots, a bit scary in fact.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on July 24, 2019, 09:52:24 PM


Meanwhile, you know that there are seven (!) Karajan cycles, right?

Checks the Ionarts survey...
Two are on DVD, so I don't count them. If I ever knew about the Tokyo one, I forgot it. I pretty sure I never heard a note of it.

I have a Karajan Ninth on DVD. It might be from the Unitel cycle. TBH, the chorus was filmed in a way that turned them into synchronized robots, a bit scary in fact.

I have to update the survey, actually. The first video cycle (I don't 'emotionally' count it, either) is wholly different from all others. The second video cycle is the same as the 80s recordings, except for the Ninth or at least the last movement of the Ninth.

But apart from the 70s Tokyo cycle, another complete 60s Tokyo cycle has been unearthed and recently published!
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Andy D. on July 25, 2019, 05:01:38 AM
The 60s Karajan was my go to for decades; however in the past decade I've been really appreciating the 70s more and more. The 9th from the 70s is without question my number one.

I also own the Gardiner and really like the 4th and 6th from that one.

Hard to go wrong with the classic Furtwangler, Klemperer...but I seem to be having problems these days with the recorded sound (I didn't used to, but I was young and perhaps not quite as discerning then).
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: Florestan on July 25, 2019, 05:09:18 AM
I don't know if this has been already mentioned but it's very good. Actually, it's my go-to set. (The sound is simply glorious, despite its age.)

(https://www.hbdirect.com/coverm/thumbnails/885470009261.jpg)

MusicWeb review here: http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2017/Mar/Beethoven_sys_0002672CCC.htm (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2017/Mar/Beethoven_sys_0002672CCC.htm)
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: SurprisedByBeauty on July 25, 2019, 05:16:54 AM
I had that in my hand, yesterday, and was wondering. I know I want his Schumann...  It was the older set, which isn't half as pretty, so I opted against it. But I will acquire Konwitschny, sooner or later.
There certainly is/was lots of sleeper-excellence among these GDR conductors. Notably him, Herbig, and Suitner.
Title: Re: Complete Sets of Beethoven's Symphonies
Post by: amw on August 08, 2019, 01:44:24 AM
I enjoyed the 9th. It is closer to Zinman than anyone else I can think of, but that's fine: I like Zinman! :)
I finally got around to listening to the Fischer 9th. I don't have a strong opinion on the first 3 movements but will say the vocal soloists and choir are very good, better than most of the other recordings of the 9th that I have. I do get the feeling that he was listening to the live Gardiner Missa Solemnis on SDG while he was making the recording though.