Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

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Anders Wik
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Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Anders Wik » Tue Aug 04, 2009 3:32 pm

I will have do some "blindtestings" with some help from my wife to make reviews and scores of all my recordings of the Tchaikovskys Fifth Symphony. I know that these blindtestings will prove some suprises for me (as always) but that will make the effort even more rewarding. Starting this week I will listened through at least 18 recordings (!) on LPs and CDs.
The recordings are: Haitink, Karajan, Ashkenazy, Mrawinskij, Abbado, Cantelli, Markevitch, Muti (Philharmonia and Philadephia), Stokowski, Gergiev, Jansons, Temirkanov, Pappano, Dudamel, Bernstein, Rostropovitj and Järvi.
My four preferenses before (!) starting the testing are Mrawinskij, Gergiev, Muti (Philharmonia) and Karajan !
But that will probably NOT be my favorites afterwards (I know that by experience).
Please give me some hints on what you think the results will be.
I´ll keep you informed.

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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by jbuck919 » Tue Aug 04, 2009 3:39 pm

I'm not the best person to respond to your question, but since I did not recognize your name, I'd like to take the opportunity to say

WELCOME TO THE CMG!

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Barry
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Barry » Tue Aug 04, 2009 4:09 pm

I spent last night listening to a series of mono Tchaikovsky recordings from the early 50s by Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra (Swan Lake and Nutcracker Suites, fifth and sixth symphonies, R&J Overture, March Slav .... these are available for download for those of you who aren't in the U.S. at http://www.classicsonline.com/Search/SearchEngine.aspx ... just type Ormandy and Tchaikovsky in the search field). I've written on here before that the earlier to mid 50s was the best period for Ormandy and Philly and last night's listening hammered that point home for me. The fifth was no exception. I think it's far and away Ormandy's best recording of that symphony and one of the better ones out there. The power that the Philadelphia brings forth in these recordings is really amazing; although it's not for those of you who like Tchaikovsky lean; these are big-boned performances with tremendous playing from all sections.

Another big favorite for the fifth is Fricsay/BPO on DG. It's very aggressive, and I think Fricsay nailed that approach even better than Mravinsky did on his DG stereo recording.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, when I'm looking for something slower, with heart-on-sleeve, Bernstein's last recording with the NYP on DG rarely fails to tug at my heart-strings.

And I'll second John in welcoming you to the board!
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Anders Wik
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Anders Wik » Tue Aug 04, 2009 4:16 pm

I will do some hunting for Ormandy and Fricsay in the shops here. Especially the Fricsay I´ve heard of, and I really like his Dvorak.

Barry
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Barry » Tue Aug 04, 2009 4:28 pm

Anders Wik wrote:I will do some hunting for Ormandy and Fricsay in the shops here. Especially the Fricsay I´ve heard of, and I really like his Dvorak.
I don't think you'll find the Ormandy recordings I was writing about in any shops. They may have the later stereo remakes he did in the 60s and 70s, but they aren't as good. The ones I wrote about are probably only available on vinyl and from that download site I provided a link for.

The Fricsay is probably available more easily.
"If this is coffee, please bring me some tea; but if this is tea, please bring me some coffee." - Abraham Lincoln

"Although prepared for martyrdom, I preferred that it be postponed." - Winston Churchill

"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement." - Ronald Reagan

http://www.davidstuff.com/political/wmdquotes.htm
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Heck148
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Heck148 » Tue Aug 04, 2009 5:16 pm

Tchaik 5 is not a faovrite of mine - overexposure, overplaying, overprogrammng has taken its toll - but, if I do hear it, my faves are -

Solti II, and
Mravinsky/LenPO/DG/1960
Bernstein/NYPO/CBS Sony/c'59 is pretty OK also...

Febnyc
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Febnyc » Tue Aug 04, 2009 5:41 pm

One of my favorite symphonies - the epitome of Tchaikovskian beauty. It has all the elements which make Petr Ilyich the master composer he is: power and strength in the first movement; a to-die-for melody in the Andante Cantabile; a delightful waltz (who wrote better symphonic waltzes?); and a mighty, Maestoso finale/coda.

I'll stick with my Mravinsky/Leningrad (the set of 4,5 & 6) and Bernstein/NYPO - both on DG.

But I also enjoy a Stokowski/New Philharmonia on London.

I'd find it hard to knock any performance of this glorious work.

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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Chalkperson » Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:51 pm

Mravinsky - 1952 DG
Mravinsky - 1960 DG
Svetlanov - 1967 - Melodiya
Marketvitch - 1962 - Philips
Jansons - 1986 - Chandos
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david johnson
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by david johnson » Wed Aug 05, 2009 1:48 am

Just go with Ormandy/Philly.

dj

Holden Fourth
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Holden Fourth » Wed Aug 05, 2009 3:21 am

Another vote for the Fricsay

Brendan

Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Brendan » Wed Aug 05, 2009 3:33 am

And another. Once I heard the Fricsay, nothing else will do (as is so often the case, at least for me).

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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Donaldopato » Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:40 am

It has been ages since I heard the Fricsay, I will have to check it out.

The Mravinsky/Lenningrad 1960 is spectacular and gets my vote.
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maestrob
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by maestrob » Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:15 am

Mravinsky 1960/DGG (stereo)

Ormandy/Phila. mono & stereo versions

Stokowski/Philharmonia (London Phase IV)

http://www.amazon.com/Decca-Recordings- ... 755&sr=1-1

Image

As for the Stokowski, it's available only as part of a box set which, in two parts, reissues all of his 1960's & 70's stereo recordings made for London Phase IV in brilliant remasterings.


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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Wallingford » Wed Aug 05, 2009 2:21 pm

Another vote for Ormandy!
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stenka razin
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by stenka razin » Wed Aug 05, 2009 4:00 pm

There are so many great Tcaik 5ths. I would go with Mravinsky DG (1960), if you must have just one extra. 8)
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Trilogy » Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:18 pm

I'm going with my favorite conductor; Karajan and the BPO - in my opinion Karajan can do no wrong. 8)

I'd love to hear some of the others mentioned though ...

"Music embodies feeling without forcing it to contend and
combine with thought, as it is forced in most arts and
especially in the art of words. If music has one advantage
over the other media through which a person can represent
the impressions of the soul, it owes this to its supreme
capacity to make each inner impulse audible without the
assistance of reason...Music presents at once the intensity
and the expression of feeling. It is the embodied and
intelligible essence of feeling, capable of being apprehended
by our senses. It permeates them like a dart, like a ray, like
a mist, like a spirit, and fills our soul."


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Barry
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Barry » Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:43 pm

Trilogy wrote:I'm going with my favorite conductor; Karajan and the BPO - in my opinion Karajan can do no wrong. 8)
As is the case with Mravinsky and Ormandy, there are several Karajan recordings of this symphony available. I think he made three with the BPO and one with the VPO. Does anyone have an opinion on which is the best? I know his 70s DG recording of the 4th on DG is fantastic, but I don't think I've heard the 5th from that same period.
"If this is coffee, please bring me some tea; but if this is tea, please bring me some coffee." - Abraham Lincoln

"Although prepared for martyrdom, I preferred that it be postponed." - Winston Churchill

"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement." - Ronald Reagan

http://www.davidstuff.com/political/wmdquotes.htm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2pbp0hur ... re=related

Trilogy
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Trilogy » Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:52 pm

Barry wrote:
Trilogy wrote:I'm going with my favorite conductor; Karajan and the BPO - in my opinion Karajan can do no wrong. 8)
As is the case with Mravinsky and Ormandy, there are several Karajan recordings of this symphony available. I think he made three with the BPO and one with the VPO. Does anyone have an opinion on which is the best? I know his 70s DG recording of the 4th on DG is fantastic, but I don't think I've heard the 5th from that same period.

I didn't know he recorded Tchaikovsky's 5th with the VPO ...
I like his mid '60s (BPO) recordings.

"Music embodies feeling without forcing it to contend and
combine with thought, as it is forced in most arts and
especially in the art of words. If music has one advantage
over the other media through which a person can represent
the impressions of the soul, it owes this to its supreme
capacity to make each inner impulse audible without the
assistance of reason...Music presents at once the intensity
and the expression of feeling. It is the embodied and
intelligible essence of feeling, capable of being apprehended
by our senses. It permeates them like a dart, like a ray, like
a mist, like a spirit, and fills our soul."


- Franz Joseph Liszt

rwetmore
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by rwetmore » Thu Aug 06, 2009 7:16 pm

I haven't heard the Mravinsky recording in nearly 10 years, but I recently purchased the Szell/Cleveland recording in its new remaster and was quite surprised with how good it is. It's one of the best, IMO. It's coupled with an excellent Capriccio Italien. These both date from the late 50s but actually sound quite good.

BTW, has anyone heard the newer release of the Mravinsky recordings? I think about 3 or 4 years ago they were remastered and re-released over seas.
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by John F » Thu Aug 06, 2009 8:33 pm

Mravinsky's stereo recording on DG is the most exciting I've heard, with brilliant playing by what was then by far Russia's finest orchestra. Never done this kind of elaborate comparison, but whenever I hear a performance or recording of the 5th, I can't avoid mentally comparing it with Mravinsky's, and the old guy always wins.
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by RebLem » Thu Aug 06, 2009 9:39 pm

Mravinsky is very good, but I find his frenetic pacing too unnerving for satisfying, year in, year out listening. For a performance that lets the music breathe, maintains a good steady pace, with excellent phrasing, for all of the last three Tchaikovsky symphonies, you can't, IMO, beat the Monteux/Boston Symphony recordings.
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Re: Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony, best recordings !

Post by Chalkperson » Thu Aug 06, 2009 9:54 pm

For year in year out listening, I highly recommend Gennadi Rozhdestvensky on Regis.. :D
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