F. Mendelssohn Mendelssohn: Symphonies Nos. 4 "Italian" & 5 "Reformation"

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Item:  DEGR 459156

CD Details

  • Released: March 9, 1999
  • Label: Deutsche Grammophon


  • 1.1. Allegro vivace
  • 2.2. Andante con moto
  • 3.3. Con moto moderato
  • 4.4. Saltarello. Presto
  • 5.1. Andante - Allegro con fuoco
  • 6.2. Allegro vivace
  • 7.3. Andante - attacca
  • 8.4. Choral (Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott) Andante con moto - Allegro vivace - Allegro maestoso
  • 9.2. Andante con moto
  • 10.3. Menuetto. Con moto grazioso
  • 11.4. Saltarello. Allegro di molto

Product Description:

Mendelssohn was not like Beethoven or Verdi--his second thoughts were not always better than his first. In fact, not one of the changes he made in his 1834 revision to the Italian Symphony--recorded here for the first time, alongside the original version of 1833--strikes me as an improvement; indeed, the later effort sounds more like a first draft, thinner, more repetitive, melodically less engaging. Nonetheless, it's good to have the composer's refashioning of the score on disc, especially when it's performed as confidently as here, if only to give us a renewed appreciation of what he achieved the first time around. For the familiar version of the Italian Symphony is certainly a masterpiece. And the performance it receives here from the Vienna Philharmonic and John Eliot Gardiner is one of the best currently available: polished and energetic, with plenty of the elegance one expects in Mendelssohn, even when he's at his most animated. The account of the Reformation Symphony, recorded live, is marginally less successful as an interpretation, though the orchestra's playing leaves little to be desired. --Ted Libbey

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Product Info:

  • UPC: 028945915623
  • Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
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