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Nosyrev: Symphonies No 1 And 2 / Verbitsky, St. Petersburg


Release Date: 08/17/1999 
Label:  Olympia   Catalog #: 660   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Mikhail I. Nosyrev
Conductor:  Vladimir Verbitzky
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academic Symphony Orchestra St. Petersburg
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 19 Mins. 

Special Order: This CD requires additional production time and ships within 2-3 weeks.  

This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Last February, Mikhail Nosyrev's First Symphony received its public premiere. Behind this simple statement lies the story of a 19-year-old composer being hauled out of a concert in 1943, sentenced to death for anti-Soviet jokes reported by his teacher - the betrayal makes one cringe -but after a period in the Gulag given rehabilitation largely thanks to Shostakovich, who in 1967 wrote an official letter speaking of him as 'a talented composer with sufficient professional training.' Nosyrev died in 1981, having begun the First Symphony as long ago as 1957, never really seeing the fruits of that intervention but (as these works testify) deeply in debt to the older composer. The full tale is told in Per Skans's thorough note to this record; Read more and Olympia sets an example to more prestigious record companies with essays by Skans that are a contribution to the history of music in modern Russia.

Shostakovich's voice echoes in this music. It is heard in the finale of No. I, again in the grotesqueries of the Vivo of No. 2 (the Gogolinspired Shostakovich of The Nose), perhaps in the ironically corny waltz in the succeeding movement, perhaps in the savage destruction of that tune in its closing bars, unmistakably in the DSCH motto theme that sounds softly here and there. There are echoes from earlier composers, too. The Andante of No. I is not the only music to turn affectionately in the direction of Tchaikovsky, though Nosyrev is sensitive enough to avoid pastiche and instead to reflect the French elegance which Tchaikovsky gratefully took as inspiration. Both works are filled with ideas, and with vividly imagined colours. No doubt recognizing his gift here, Nosyrev scores the Second Symphony as one movement for strings, one for woodwind, one for brass, and a finale for full orchestra (the percussion players are kept busy throughout). But I cannot avoid agreeing with DJF, reviewing the Third and Fourth Symphonies last January, that despite vivid and memorable moments' their full potential is never realized. Nosyrev too often takes refuge in colourful splashes of invention that go nowhere, or are rather factitiously sustained for a bit in fugue. It is not difficult to shelve these reservations and feel sympathy for a composer who had so much invention in him, and perhaps, as Shostakovich sagely wrote, 'sufficient' training, but not yet enough to make the most of his considerable gifts. Those who decide to give this brave and suffering composer a try will assuredly find his music of real interest.

-- Gramophone [9/1999]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Symphony no 1 by Mikhail I. Nosyrev
Conductor:  Vladimir Verbitzky
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academic Symphony Orchestra St. Petersburg
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1965; USSR 
Date of Recording: 12/1998 
Venue:  St. Petersburg 
Length: 41 Minutes 36 Secs. 
2.
Symphony no 2 by Mikhail I. Nosyrev
Conductor:  Vladimir Verbitzky
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academic Symphony Orchestra St. Petersburg
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1977; USSR 
Date of Recording: 12/1998 
Venue:  St. Petersburg 
Length: 37 Minutes 24 Secs. 

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