Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Weinberg, Mieczyslaw. (1919-1996) Symphony No. 6 & Moldavian Rhapsody.

From my collection.
Bought in 2012.
First listen: April 2012.
Second listen: 3-5-2012.
Third listen: 3-5-2017.
Label: Naxos.
Recording dates: December 2010.
Recording venue: Petersburg Recording Studio at the St. Catherine Lutheran Church, Russia.
Recording engineers: Dirk Fischer & Alexei Barashkin.
Running time: 61:02.
Relevance to me: Essential.

Works performed:
Rhapsody on Moldavian Themes, opus 47, No. 1 (1949)
Symphony No. 6, opus 79. (1963)

Performed by:
Glinka Choral College Boy's Choir, Vasily Grachev.
St. Petersburg State SO, Vladimir Lande.

[The Moldavian Rhapsody is a concise medley of tunes that embrace folk influence, both melancholic and high spirited, culminating in a joyous and unstoppable dance. I could not better describe it as the Naxos booklet did.]

For me it is to comment on performance and sound. There is a certain lack in refinement. Lande is attentive to the score, but the orchestra does not always follow suit. Here and there the orchestra misses details or lingers to long on notes. Not disturbingly so, but I could hear that. The Moldavian Rhapsody is a  brilliant, loud and dirty extravaganza in the most positive sense. At times is is almost carnivalesque in an exuberant way, with extreme registers and dynamic contrast. But a good work in which all individual contributions of the orchestra are given ample space.

Now the 6th Symphony is a different kettle of fish.

[It is scored for a large orchestra and a children's choir. A work of huge expression, anguished and dynamic, encompassing laments, circus gallops, burlesque, and a cataclysmic and heartrending slow movements. Again the booklet sums up what this work is about.] 

The interpretative energy of the music making, is spectacular. There is a rhetorical daring with overspilling ornamentations which as a whole is irresistible. It's exciting and scintillating in one go. One of Weinberg's best works. Shostakovich thought so too, he regarded this work so much that he used it as teaching material in his classes. The performance is good, and the sound too, but again I miss a bit of the refinement to make it special. Recording wise, I have some trouble with the projection of the flutes, a bit too shrill and too loud for comfort. Orchestral details and depth are in full force. The Peterburgers enjoyed this ride almost as much as I did.

  

Baroque Bass Cantatas from the Mügeln Archive.

New acquisition. Date of purchase: September 2017. First listen: 25-9-2017. Label: CPO. Recording dates: December 2010. Venue: Gemeinde...