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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 5:23 pm 
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At the weekend I listened to a live performance of Schubert's Ninth symphony on the radio and I really liked it. Now I don't want to start buying dozens of Schubert records just yet as it may distract me from my Mahler quest so I am wondering if there are one or two perfomances of this symphony that you would like to recommend that I buy?

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 5:25 pm 
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There ar soooo many recordings. A fairly recent and very good one is Sir Simon Rattle's on EMI. You can't go wrong with that performance.

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 Post subject: Schubert 9th
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 5:37 pm 
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The Krips recording with the LSO in their prime is outsatnding in every respect. A truly Great C major


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 5:39 pm 
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Furtwängler is great.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 5:43 pm 
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I think the best recording of this symphony in stereo is the Szell/Cleveland on Sony.

http://www.amazon.com/Schubert-Symphoni ... 612&sr=1-1

(or you can pay more for it on SACD if you have a player for that)

The other one I like maybe even more than that one is a live Furtwangler/BPO from 1942. The sound for that one obviously won't be top-notch, but the intensity of the performance is up there with the best of Furtwangler's wartime performances that have made it to disc.
http://www.amazon.com/Schubert-Freischu ... 506&sr=1-6

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 6:38 pm 
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I can heartily recommend two specific performances, both analog stereo of very good quality that have transferred well to CD:

The Krips on Decca/London for a beautifully presented, somewhat formal/stately approach.

The Munch/Boston on RCA for great power and forward momentum (probably my favorite stereo 9th).

Get both and you'll have excellent examples of two very different approaches.

In the historic realm, I find Furtwangler/Berlin (wartime version is good but I also like the early 1950s reading), Mengelberg/COA (either studio Telefunken or live Philips) and Toscanini's Philadelphia Orchestra performance all exceptionally worthy renditions.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 7:01 pm 
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I agree that the Josef Krips/London Symphony recording is a beautiful performance of the Great C Major. Older and in monaural sound is Wilhelm Furtwängler's DG recording with the Berlin Philharmonic, a magnificent achievement in every way. The Szell and Münch recordings, which I've heard, are powerful statements that are too hard-edged for this music, I think. Haven't heard Rattle's.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 7:41 pm 
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Sean - Avoid Gardiner with the Vienna Phil; I find it a bit underwhelming. I have two recordings of Krips, one conducting the London SO in May 1958 (which I prefer) and the other with the Royal Concertgebouw (don't know the year of this one). But my favorite might be Toscanini in a 1953 recording with the NBC SO, in spite of the dated sound. He really brings the piece to life - just go to Amazon and sample the opening bars of the second movement to get a taste of it.


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 10:58 pm 
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As Ralph said there are a lot to choose from, I love the 9th, it is probably my favorite Symphony of all before we get to Mahler and Shostakovich, Beethoven's are a great 'set' but Schubert's is very mighty, I am not a big fan of his other symphonies and I am indifferent to Brahms, or should say i'm still trying to fall in love with Brahms, you know how it is, some Composers take time to 'click' Shosty took me 20 years but I loved Bruckner early on...I digress...

Four Favourites then..

George Szell - Cleveland Philharmonic Orchestra - SONY SACD
Wilhelm Furtwangler - Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra - DG
Gunter Wand - Munich Philharmonic Orchestra - Profil
Charles Munch - Boston Philharmonic Orchestra - RCA SACD


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 11:41 pm 
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Seán wrote:
At the weekend I listened to a live performance of Schubert's Ninth symphony on the radio and I really liked it. I am wondering if there are one or two perfomances of this symphony that you would like to recommend that I buy?


Toscanini/NBC/1953 - a great "Great" - lean, mean, hard-driving, AT's approach to Schubert is not the usual - not slow, soupy, heavy - the RCA/BMG AT Collection disc also includes his superlative "Unfinished"

Barry Z
Quote:
I think the best recording of this symphony in stereo is the Szell/Cleveland on Sony.

an excellent recommendation - one of my favorites....similar to Toscanini in many ways - muscular, aggressive, with some great WW playing..

another favorite, from the historical archive - Frederick Stock/CSO from 1942 originally Columbia, IIRC - big and powerful, with quite excellent sound!! - has alot of "romanticisms "- unscored tempo fluctuations, acelerandi, ritardandi - but Stock makes a good case for them, and they make musical sense....even if unindicated....


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 12:16 am 
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Another "historic" goodie:

CLEMENS KRAUSS/VIENNA SYMPHONY ORCH.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 5:16 am 
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To me there are two extraordinary versions of this work:

1 - Josef Krips with the LSO: a perfect balance, articulation and a very good dynamic.

2 - Bruno Walter with the Columbia Orchestra. The balance is not as perfect as in Krips, but the phrasing is divine.

Some other good versions: Furtwängler (BPO), Böhm (BPO), Walter (NYP) and Toscanini (NBC)


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 2:53 pm 
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Thanks for such a comprehensive response.

There are have been several very interesting recommendations so perhaps I should narrow the selection down to three:

George Szell - Cleveland Philharmonic Orchestra - SONY SACD
Wilhelm Furtwangler - Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra - DG
Josef Krips - LSO

I have Szell's with the CO playing Mahler's Fourth and it's one of my favourite Mahler interpretations. I only know Furtwangler by reputation and have never heard of Krips until now.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 3:06 pm 
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Chalkperson wrote:
As Ralph said there are a lot to choose from, I love the 9th, it is probably my favorite Symphony of all before we get to Mahler and Shostakovich, Beethoven's are a great 'set' but Schubert's is very mighty, I am not a big fan of his other symphonies and I am indifferent to Brahms, or should say i'm still trying to fall in love with Brahms, you know how it is, some Composers take time to 'click' Shosty took me 20 years but I loved Bruckner early on...I digress...



Do please digress. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the Schubert radio broadcast so it's interesting that you should put that up there with Mahler. However, I do not like Shostakovich's music I have his Fifth and his Ninth. His Fifth is acceptable but his Ninth I find too bland. I saw a performance of his Tenth on BBC 3 last week and that was enjoyable mainly because of the Orchestra rather than the music itself, it was the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela, they are great. Maybe I need time to adjust to his music?

I really like what I have heard of Bruckner, I expect he's next on my list. I have copies of his Fourth (Karajan) and his Sixth (Klemperer) and this Sixth is great in my opinion.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 3:50 pm 
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Well let us know when you're ready for Bruckner suggestions. We'll be ready :wink: .

I just want to point out that there are two different Schubert 9ths by Furtwangler on DG. The studio one from the early 50s has probably been heard by more people and is in better sound. The live one I recommended was from '42 and is available in several collections and on that single disc I provided a link for. It's a more intense performance, with more extreme tempos and more savagery in the playing than the studio recording, but with inferior sound quality.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 4:20 pm 
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Try Solti's recording on Decca - unusually warm and relaxed by Solti's standards, so it really hits the spot!

As for Bruckner, I would agree that the 6th is great, but prepare to be bowled over by 7,8 and 9, which are perhaps the three highest mountains in the Brucknergebirge!

Relax, get hold of a Bruckner 7 and cue track 2 - the famous adagio written when his idol Wagner had died - 20+ minutes of heaven (regardless of where Wagner actually ended up :twisted: )

Martin


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 6:24 pm 
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Where's the love for Karl Böhm? I purchased DG's set of his complete Schubert Symphonies and found within my favourite recording of the Great C Major. Give him a chance!

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 8:36 pm 
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keninottawa wrote:
Where's the love for Karl Böhm? I purchased DG's set of his complete Schubert Symphonies and found within my favourite recording of the Great C Major. Give him a chance!

I have been listening and watching a lot of Karl Bohm lately, his Bruckner 7+8 and Brahms 1 on Audite, and visually, Salome and Ariadne Auf Nexus on DVD...


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 8:53 pm 
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I bought the Bohm/BPO Schubert 9 last year with high expectations and was a bit disappointed. It didn't make the impact on me that my favorite recordings of this piece do. Some people say his Dresden recording of the Schubert is better than the Berlin one. Maybe I'll give that a try.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 9:56 pm 
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It's hard to go wrong with Schubert's Ninth. Here are some ones I like in no particular order:

Vonk SLSO Arch Media
Bernstein New York Phil Sony
Bernstein RCOA DG
Karajan Berlin Phil EMI
Wand (Either Berlin Phil or NDR SO) RCA
Bohm Berlin Phil DG


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 1:25 am 
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keninottawa wrote:
Where's the love for Karl Böhm? I purchased DG's set of his complete Schubert Symphonies and found within my favourite recording of the Great C Major. Give him a chance!


Karl Böhm? Yes, a fine conductor---but a bit dry for me here. I love the Muti set, and his Ninth especially is fabulous...it just moves along so dynamically. AND Muti takes ALL of the repeats! At first, I wasn't sure if I liked that but, well as Schumann said, "himmliche Länge"---let's hear it for Schubert's repeats!

Remember that this symphony was the basic 'blueprint' for Bruckner's mature symphonic style---at least as far as first movements are concerned.

(By the way, Bruckner and Draeseke were two symphonists who were largely able to avoid the pervasive Schumann influence (unlike Volkmann, Gade, Raff, Brahms, Bruch, Goldmark and Goetz).

Tschüß!
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 7:14 am 
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Month ago bought mr.Wand/NDR live version of Scubert 8 and
Schumann 4. I bought it for a "Unfinished",but Wand /NDR performance of Schuman(4) was a relevation and pleasure . Beautiful!!!
Also,i got a Munch/BSO(Schubert8&9),but i like just some part of it(don't get me wrong).
Must give a try to Krips and Bernstein.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 10:16 am 
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MTT is going to do it here this weekend - be there! If not, report follows...

BTW, the last movement is Billy Forsythe's glorious "Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude" - not to be missed...


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 3:17 pm 
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Barry Z wrote:
I bought the Bohm/BPO Schubert 9 last year with high expectations and was a bit disappointed. It didn't make the impact on me that my favorite recordings of this piece do. Some people say his Dresden recording of the Schubert is better than the Berlin one. Maybe I'll give that a try.



I have a recording of Schubert's 8th and 9th with Bohm and The Berlin Philharmonic on the Deutche Grammophon label which I am very fond of. And I know that both Bohm and the Berlin Philharmonic are highly regarded in this Austo-German fare. Our recordings may be different ones.

I thought the Toscanini LP recording was a little too fast and blustery in parts.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 3:43 pm 
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Cyril Ignatius wrote:
Barry Z wrote:
I bought the Bohm/BPO Schubert 9 last year with high expectations and was a bit disappointed. It didn't make the impact on me that my favorite recordings of this piece do. Some people say his Dresden recording of the Schubert is better than the Berlin one. Maybe I'll give that a try.



I have a recording of Schubert's 8th and 9th with Bohm and The Berlin Philharmonic on the Deutche Grammophon label which I am very fond of. And I know that both Bohm and the Berlin Philharmonic are highly regarded in this Austo-German fare. Our recordings may be different ones.


I'm fairly sure they're the same ones. Mine is a minority view for sure; and it's in spite of the fact that I'm a huge fan of the BPO from that era. And I didn't think it bad by any means. It just didn't quite measure up well with my favorite recordings of the piece. I'd still like to hear his Dresden recording though.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 5:43 pm 
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Barry Z wrote:
I just want to point out that there are two different Schubert 9ths by Furtwangler on DG. The studio one from the early 50s has probably been heard by more people and is in better sound. The live one I recommended was from '42 and is available in several collections and on that single disc I provided a link for. It's a more intense performance, with more extreme tempos and more savagery in the playing than the studio recording, but with inferior sound quality.


Barry, I have listened to that on my computer, I'll have to try it again later as one of my speakers isn't working so I couldn't here it very well. It's not a bad price anyway so thanks for that.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 12:18 am 
Seán wrote:
At the weekend I listened to a live performance of Schubert's Ninth symphony on the radio and I really liked it. Now I don't want to start buying dozens of Schubert records just yet as it may distract me from my Mahler quest so I am wondering if there are one or two perfomances of this symphony that you would like to recommend that I buy?


Karajan/VPO, Kertesz, Muti, Suitner, Giulini/Bavarian.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 7:54 am 
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Interesting discussion, but I've begun to think that maybe the music itself is getting lost dissecting the various recordings of it. :)

This post might bear repeating:

Robert Schumann: The C Major Symphony of Franz Schubert
http://www.classicalmusicguide.com/view ... hp?t=19448
Quote:
There sure are plenty of historic musical writings out there in the online world if one knows where to look. It’s pretty cool to glimpse into the minds of some of the greatest musical thinker of their times. It also helps to be an amateur polyglot. :)

As we have seen, German composer Robert Schumann was a highly perceptive writer on music. Many times I have read his description of the "heavenly length [himmlische Länge]" of Symphony No. 9 in C Major "The Great" by Franz Schubert. I was curious of the context of Schumann's remark, so his entire article follows in his original German in the next post, and my English translation is in the post after that.

First, however, some background about the Schubert symphonies:

Franz Schubert: Symphonies and Reconstructions

http://www.classicalmusicguide.com/view ... 003#190003
Quote:
Original German:
Robert Schumann wrote:
[b]Robert Schumann: Die C-dur-Symphonie von Franz Schubert
Neue Zeitschrift für Musik
, Leipzig, 1840

http://www.classicalmusicguide.com/view ... 004#190004
Quote:
My English translation:
Robert Schumann wrote:
[b]Robert Schumann: The C Major Symphony of Franz Schubert
New Journal for Musik
, Leipzig, 1840

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2008 5:18 pm 
MaestroDJS wrote:
Interesting discussion, but I've begun to think that maybe the music itself is getting lost dissecting the various recordings of it. :)

This post might bear repeating:


No, I would rather listen to music.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2008 4:48 pm 
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hangos wrote:
Try Solti's recording on Decca - unusually warm and relaxed by Solti's standards, so it really hits the spot!


Well I searched the shops in Dublin for a copy of Schubert's Ninth by Krip, Szell and Furtwangler to no avail.

I did manage to get a copy of a Georg Solti cd with the VPO playing the 5th, 8th and the 9th. Now this is terrific. I have listened to the Ninth several times and I have listened once to the Fifth. I am very happy with this double cd set. I wil probably have to shop online to get the other three that I've mentioned.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2008 5:48 pm 
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Barry, Chalkie and others recommended the Szell with the Cleveland Orchestra recording. Well, I picked this up very cheaply from Amazon a week ago and put it on the CD this afternoon. The thud on the floor whan the Orchestra let rip was the sound of my chin, this is a fabulous CD. When they finished the Fourth movement I played the symphony again:

Image

Once again thanks to Barry, Chalkie and the rest of you for a sound recommendation. :wink:

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 2:16 pm 
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Oftentimes, when peckish for the Ninth, I turn to an Ormandy "live" tape from '72. While I can't say much for his commercial recording from 3 or 4 years before (one of his last Columbia discs), I find this concert performance has almost as much savoir faire and infinite wisdom as Toscanini's Philadelphia '42 performance.

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No-one fancy Blommstedt? I have it on Decca with the San Francisco Symphony from 1993. Sounds good to me,but then I could hardly tell a Karajan from a Kleiber! I mean,what defines a good performance?

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LSAmadeus wrote:
,what defines a good performance?


If I enjoy it, if it moves me in anyway then I consider it a good performance.

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I see I'm basically repeating myself - this thread has been resurrected after a bit of a rest.

:roll: :)

Schubert C Major "Great" Symphony is a real standard...

Toscanin/NBC/ - 1953/RCA-BG is my favorite, wonderful drive and energy...

Szell/Cleveland [1957CBS/Sony] is very fine also, and features some lovely WW playing.
I liked his later one for EMI as well - 1970 - one of his last recordings - but I haven't heard it in a long, long time.

a wonderful version of historical interest - Stock/CSO from 1942....a great recording, in quite decent sound, in the romantic tradition - tempo flucuations, emphasis, etc...
Stock was not a flashy personality like Toscanini or Stokowski, but his musicianship was very solid and inspiring....and the orchestra sounds terrific....


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