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Sibelius: Complete Symphonies / John Storgards, BBC Philharmonic

Sibelius
Release Date: 04/29/2014 
Label:  Chandos   Catalog #: 10809   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 3 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The Finnish maestro John Storgårds, Principal Guest Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic, presents his first recording on Chandos, a complete symphonic cycle of his nation’s greatest musical export, Jean Sibelius.

The triumphant premieres of Symphonies Nos 1 and 2, with their big tunes and great romantic sweep, established the international reputation of Sibelius as a symphonist, some audiences even considering him Beethoven’s natural successor. The symphonies that followed chart Sibelius’s development as one of the most individual composers of the early twentieth century. Each symphony has its unique approach, whether it be the classicism of the Third, the brooding modernism of the Fourth, or the icy stillness of the
Read more Sixth, so evocative of the Finnish landscape. The Symphony No. 7 in C major represents Sibelius’s greatest achievement in the symphonic form. In it he compresses the grand emotional sweep of a symphony into one startlingly original movement lasting little over twenty minutes.

Illness prevented Sibelius from completing any major works in the last thirty years of his life. Manuscripts show, however, that he never stopped composing. Recorded here are three orchestral fragments prepared by Timo Virtanen from late sketches thought to be for Sibelius’s legendary ‘lost’ 8th Symphony, destroyed by the composer in 1945. They offer a fascinating glimpse into the composer’s creative imagination during a time when impaired health inhibited Sibelius from realising his rich musical visions.
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Works on This Recording

1.
Symphony no 1 in E minor, Op. 39 by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1899; Finland 
2.
Symphony no 2 in D major, Op. 43 by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1901-1902; Finland 
3.
Symphony no 3 in C major, Op. 52 by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1907; Finland 
4.
Symphony no 4 in A minor, Op. 63 by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1911; Finland 
5.
Symphony no 5 in E flat major, Op. 82 by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1915/1919; Finland 
6.
Symphony no 6 in D minor, Op. 104 by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1923; Finland 
7.
Symphony no 7 in C major, Op. 105 by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1924; Finland 
8.
Symphony no 8: Three Late Fragments (Probable) by Jean Sibelius
Conductor:  John Storgårds
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: Finland 
Notes: Transcribed by Timo Virtanen. 

Sound Samples

Symphony No. 1 in E Minor, Op. 39: I. Andante, ma non troppo - Allegro energico
Symphony No. 1 in E Minor, Op. 39: II. Andante (ma non troppo lento)
Symphony No. 1 in E Minor, Op. 39: III. Scherzo: Allegro
Symphony No. 1 in E Minor, Op. 39: IV. Finale (quasi una Fantasia): Andante - Allegro molto
Symphony No. 4 in A Minor, Op. 63: I. Tempo molto moderato, quasi adagio
Symphony No. 4 in A Minor, Op. 63: II. Allegro molto vivace
Symphony No. 4 in A Minor, Op. 63: III. Il tempo largo
Symphony No. 4 in A Minor, Op. 63: IV. Allegro
Orchestral Fragments: HUL 1325
Orchestral Fragments: HUL 1326/9
Orchestral Fragments: HUL 1327/2. Allegro moderato
Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 43: I. Allegretto
Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 43: II. Tempo andante, ma rubato
Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 43: III. Vivacissimo -
Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 43: IV. Finale: Allegro moderato
Symphony No. 5 in E-Flat Major, Op. 82: I. Tempo molto moderato - Allegro moderato
Symphony No. 5 in E-Flat Major, Op. 82: II. Andante mosso, quasi allegretto
Symphony No. 5 in E-Flat Major, Op. 82: III. Allegro molto - Largamente assai

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