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  1. #1
    In perfect harmony DarrenH's Avatar
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    Hey PatD (and all others) Dvorak Symphony no. 9.

    I find watching classical music performances to be very interesting so I tuned into PBS last night to catch Live At Lincoln Center. They opened with Beethoven's Violin Concerto in D which was very interesting but got a little repetitive. Towards the end I was starting to lose interest and wondering when it would finally end. But man, can that guy play the violin. I absolutely respect that kind of talent and recognize the hard work and dedication it must have taken to achieve such virtuosity.

    Next came Dvorak's Symphony no. 9 in E minor 'From The New World'. Oh boy, was this ever good. Not only was it good but it completely held my attention for the entire performance which is something of a rarity with me and lengthy classical works. Also, I'm not that "worldly" when it comes to classical music and quite frankly I'm very much a novice to the genre but that was some of the best classical music I've heard. No joking. Anyway, I liked it so much I went out and bought the CD today.

    Dvorak Symphony no. 9 'From The New World' - London Symphony Orchestra- Istvan Kertesz conducting. London 289 460 604-2.

    Recommended in the Penguin Guide was written on front. In fact it said "Penguin Classics" in bold print at the top which is why I chose this particular recording as there were many to choose from. I hope I did okay.

    Darren
    Last edited by DarrenH; 09-22-2004 at 10:49 AM.
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  2. #2
    Crackhead Extraordinaire Registered Member Dusty Chalk's Avatar
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    One of my favourites, as well (in fact, for the longest time, it was my favourite). I even learned the second movement on synthesizer.

    Yeah, the Kertesz isn't a bad version, but welcome to the unlucky world of classical music collecting -- you start wanting all the versions. The Fischer version that recently came out isn't bad neither.
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  3. #3
    Dubgazer -Jar-'s Avatar
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    I really haven't heard a bad one..

    but my favorite is by Rafael Kubelik on Deutsche Grammophon. Acutally I have his entire Dvorak Symphony cycle on vinyl... picked up the box set in New Orleans back in '92.. One of the great "finds" of my life.

    Fritz Reiner's on RCA is pretty decent too.. got it through the BMG club.

    Guess I haven't heard many newer versions..

    I actually heard the opening of the Beethoven last night and meant to tune back later to hear whatever was coming next, but I forgot to check I'm disappointed, but I would really be upset if I found out it was Mahler, Bruckner or Shostokovich that I missed

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrenH
    I find watching classical music performances to be very interesting so I tuned into PBS last night to catch Live At Lincoln Center. They opened with Beethoven's Violin Concerto in D which was very interesting but got a little repetitive. Towards the end I was starting to lose interest and wondering when it would finally end. But man, can that guy play the violin. I absolutely respect that kind of talent and recognize the hard work and dedication it must have taken to achieve such virtuosity.

    Next came Dvorak's Symphony no. 9 in E minor 'From The New World'. Oh boy, was this ever good. Not only was it good but it completely held my attention for the entire performance which is something of a rarity with me and lengthy classical works. Also, I'm not that "worldly" when it comes to classical music and quite frankly I'm very much a novice to the genre but that was some of the best classical music I've heard. No joking. Anyway, I liked it so much I went out and bought the CD today.

    Dvorak Symphony no. 9 'From The New World' - London Symphony Orchestra- Istvan Kertesz conducting. London 289 460 604-2.

    Recommended in the Penguin Guide was written on front. In fact it said "Penguin Classics" in bold print at the top which is why I chose this particular recording as there were many to choose from. I hope I did okay.

    Darren
    By all accounts, the Kertesz/LSO recording is excellent. I haven't heard it. According to the Penguin Guide, it is among the best. Since you now have it, you should probably play it and become familiar with it before even thinking about others. I tend to think we are likely to develop a preference for the first fine recording of a work we buy, so you may decide that the Kertesz is superior to all others. That will be good because then we can always argue over which performances are best!

    Bruno Walter conducted my favorite recordings of both the Beethoven Violin Concerto and Dvorak's New World Symphony.

    I think the Beethoven VC is the greatest of all the VCs, followed by the Brahms. There are a number of fine recordings, such as those with Schneiderhan, Oistrakh, Grumiaux, and Kantorow (Heifetz's tempos are too fast for the Beethoven IMHO), but my personal favorite is the old Columbia stereo recording with Zino Francescatti and the Columbia Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Bruno Walter, on CBS MK 42018. That recording just sends me, whether on LP or CD.

    Walter also conducted my favorite recording of Dvorak's Symphony No. 9, also with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra, CBSMK 42039. This is a dramatic performance but it seems to me to be more lyrical and less stenuous than Kubelik or Karajan.

    I have to agree with Jar that Kubelik's recording with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra is excellent, very dramatic. I have it on LP, DG 2530 415, but it seems to have been reissued on CD on DG 4398 436-2. I also have Karajan's 1964 recording with the BPO on LP, DG 138 922; this seems to have been reissued on DG 435 590-2. It is very good, too, but the recording isn't as good as Kubelik's.

    I have a very good sounding recording with Jascha Horenstein and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, coupled rather strangely with Wagner's Overture to The Flying Dutchman and Siegfried Idyll, on Chesky CD31. I do think Horenstein pulls the tempos around a bit too much but it still is quite a good performance.
    Last edited by Pat D; 09-23-2004 at 07:15 PM. Reason: Correct the grammar
    "Opposition brings concord. Out of discord comes the fairest harmony."
    ------Heraclitus of Ephesis (fl. 504-500 BC), trans. Wheelwright.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by -Jar-
    but my favorite is by Rafael Kubelik on Deutsche Grammophon. Acutally I have his entire Dvorak Symphony cycle on vinyl... picked up the box set in New Orleans back in '92.. One of the great "finds" of my life.

    Fritz Reiner's on RCA is pretty decent too.. got it through the BMG club.

    Guess I haven't heard many newer versions..

    I actually heard the opening of the Beethoven last night and meant to tune back later to hear whatever was coming next, but I forgot to check I'm disappointed, but I would really be upset if I found out it was Mahler, Bruckner or Shostokovich that I missed

    -jar
    I used to have the Kubelik, BPO, recording of the New World Symphony but didn't like it on my old Kef 104 speakers. It sounded bright and hard edged, just like the picture of the conductor standing amid the glass covered skyscrapers on the LP cover. So I gave it away (I never heard it on the Quads). However, since you and many others like it (notably the PG) and since so many recordings sound different on my new speakers, I picked it up at the library sale (people donate LPs and CDs for this purpose), and find it to be really very good. Whether it will replace Bruno Walter's recording in my affections is another question!
    "Opposition brings concord. Out of discord comes the fairest harmony."
    ------Heraclitus of Ephesis (fl. 504-500 BC), trans. Wheelwright.

  6. #6
    Forum Regular BarryL's Avatar
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    Gotta Love the Glorious 9th

    Dvorak's 9th was, and probably still is, my favorite symphony. There is so much in the Dvorak repetoire to enjoy, so don't stop there. If you like this, you should also enjoy Mahler's 6th Symphony, Beethovan's 5th piano concerto, Brahm's 4th Symphony, Rachmaninov's 3rd Piano Concerto, two turtle doves, and Yes's Close To The Edge.
    "A spirit with a vision is a dream with a mission" - Rush

  7. #7
    In perfect harmony DarrenH's Avatar
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    Thanks guys for responding.

    It was very enjoyable to watch and listen to this wonderful symphony being performed by the New York Philharmonic. In fact, I watched it again last night (we have two PBS channels in my area). I enjoyed the Beethoven Violin Concerto better on the second viewing. It's amazing how much you miss the first time around. Anyway, I just wanted to share my experience.

    I appreciate all the suggestions regarding the New World Symphony versions but I agree with Pat in that I should familiarize myself with the LSO/Kertesz performance before trying another. It's good to know that I did buy a respectable performance and something that was well recorded.

    Very curious about Mahler. Both Jar and Barry mentioned him with Barry being more specific and mentioning the 6th Symphony. Is this THE sypmphony regarding Mahler? If so, any comments on which performances I should look for.

    Oh, and Pat, your knowledge of classical music is very impressive. You must have thousands of recordings. Always a pleasure to read what you have to say.

    Thanks again guys,

    Darren
    Last edited by DarrenH; 09-23-2004 at 10:37 AM.
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  8. #8
    Crackhead Extraordinaire Registered Member Dusty Chalk's Avatar
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    I concur!

    Quote Originally Posted by Pat D
    Since you now have it, you should probably play it and become familiar with it before even thinking about others. I tend to think we are likely to develop a preference for the first fine recording of a work we buy, so you may decide that the Kertesz is superior to all others. That will be good because then we can always argue over which performances are best!
    Excellent advice. And so true.
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  9. #9
    Dubgazer -Jar-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrenH
    Very curious about Mahler. Both Jar and Barry mentioned him with Barry being more specific and mentioning the 6th Symphony. Is this THE sypmphony regarding Mahler? If so, any comments on which performances I should look for.

    Darren
    Any symphony can be THE Mahler symphony.. just depends on which one you're listening to at the time :-)

    If you're really interested in trying some Mahler, I'd go with one of his lighter symphonies to start, either the 1st or the 4th. They're shorter and less complex than the rest of his works. If you find you get the bug at that point, you might want to move onto the 2nd and the 5th.. from there, the sky's the limit.. If you have the time, I'd say go for it.. his symphonies are LONG.. esp the later ones like the 6th, the 7th and the 9th.. but if you have the patience, the payoff is worth it.

    I guess I can't stop you from jumping headlong into the 6th if that's what you want to do, but I'll warn you it's a very deep dark work. Hopefully it will click for you. I'd say of the newer Mahler recordings available, those conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas are just fine. The Benjamin Zander recordings on Telarc have been well reviewed, though I've only heard his 6th. There's a newer 4th by Simon Rattle that's quite enjoyable, and as far as the Mahler 1st goes, there's so many great ones that it's hard to suggest one. I like Georg Solti's 80's version, many like Bernstein's. I'd say just pick one and listen to it, get to know it, and hopefully you'll become an addict like me!

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  10. #10
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    Das Lied von der Erde

    Quote Originally Posted by -Jar-
    Any symphony can be THE Mahler symphony.. just depends on which one you're listening to at the time :-)

    If you're really interested in trying some Mahler, I'd go with one of his lighter symphonies to start, either the 1st or the 4th. They're shorter and less complex than the rest of his works. If you find you get the bug at that point, you might want to move onto the 2nd and the 5th.. from there, the sky's the limit.. If you have the time, I'd say go for it.. his symphonies are LONG.. esp the later ones like the 6th, the 7th and the 9th.. but if you have the patience, the payoff is worth it.

    I guess I can't stop you from jumping headlong into the 6th if that's what you want to do, but I'll warn you it's a very deep dark work. Hopefully it will click for you. I'd say of the newer Mahler recordings available, those conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas are just fine. The Benjamin Zander recordings on Telarc have been well reviewed, though I've only heard his 6th. There's a newer 4th by Simon Rattle that's quite enjoyable, and as far as the Mahler 1st goes, there's so many great ones that it's hard to suggest one. I like Georg Solti's 80's version, many like Bernstein's. I'd say just pick one and listen to it, get to know it, and hopefully you'll become an addict like me!

    -jar
    I agree that Mahler's 1st and 4th Symphonies are the most approachable. I would add The Song of the Earth (Das Lied von der Erde), which though not listed as a symphony is a work of symphonic proportions. I have always liked the recording with Bruno Walter and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra; Mildred Miller, mezzo-soprano; and Ernst Haefliger, tenor, which I have on LP, Odyssey Y 30043. I think it was reissued on CD. I also have good versions by Karajan and Jochum. I haven't heard a bad one.

    I have lovely recordings of Mahler's 1st and 4th with Lorin Maazel and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra on CBS WDMK 44907 and 44908. I'm not sure you can still get them. Mahler's 4th, of course, has a soprano solo in the 4th movement, singing a text representing a child's view of Heaven--quite charming. Many regard the recording with Judith Raskin, soprano; George Szell; and the Cleveland Orchestra as the classic recording and it is a fine one.

    I have never become a big Mahler fan, so I really have no recommendations for the other symphonies, though I have recordings of most of them, I think.
    "Opposition brings concord. Out of discord comes the fairest harmony."
    ------Heraclitus of Ephesis (fl. 504-500 BC), trans. Wheelwright.

  11. #11
    Forum Regular BarryL's Avatar
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    Actually...

    Quote Originally Posted by -Jar-
    Any symphony can be THE Mahler symphony.. just depends on which one you're listening to at the time :-)

    If you're really interested in trying some Mahler, I'd go with one of his lighter symphonies to start, either the 1st or the 4th.

    I guess I can't stop you from jumping headlong into the 6th if that's what you want to do, but I'll warn you it's a very deep dark work. Hopefully it will click for you. -jar
    The only reason I have the sixth is that I asked my mom if she had any Mahler and that's what she gave me. I liked it right from the start. Being a prog-guy, the 27 minute movements aren't a problem for me. I think I also have the fourth, but I can't recall it. I'll have to check it out. Thanks for the other Mahler suggestions.
    "A spirit with a vision is a dream with a mission" - Rush

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