Notes and Editorial Reviews
Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche:
. Der Rosenkavalier:
Friedrich Haider, cond; Gothenberg SO
NIGHTINGALE NC 190087 (52:38)
What a great idea! The lighter side of Richard Strauss takes in the delightful as well as the outrageous. Two of the three offerings on this disc will be more than familiar to
waltz sequences. But it is maybe
(?Whipped Cream?) that will prove to be the decisive factor here.
. The issuing company, Nightingale Classics, has chosen to provide track points for each and every little episode (26 in all), something that reflects the depth and detail of their accompanying notes by Roswitha Schlötterer-Traimer. A pity that the track titles are given in German only, though. The recording, while warm, hides nothing either?some might argue it is too close, but no one can say it is not involving. There is real depth, yet the lower frequencies are not muddy, an essential in Strauss where motives equally appear in subterranean areas as will as stratospheric ones. Most of all, this Till has plenty of character. He is a clear fairy-tale character, mischievous and lovable, and the Gothenburg players lavish great affection whenever they can on this score (the Epilogue has real warmth). True, this will not displace the truly great
s?Furtwängler and Karajan fans perhaps can breathe easy?but this is no non-starter. In his review of Haider?s
Lucia di Lammermoor
, David L. Kirk wrote of Haider?s ?dramatically alert performance with crisp direction? (
29:4), positives that are everywhere in evidence here.
The Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra brings tremendous swagger to the beginning of the first
waltz suite (although one must hear Carlos Kleiber on DG for a true Viennese feel). Yet Haider is notable for bringing a pronounced chamber music feel to the more delicate sections. The more outgoing passages seem rather restrained, though, perhaps through a rather tentative orchestra? Certainly a couple of the more congested passages can lose the listener?s confidence, and a more infectious waltz feel would have been welcome, particularly in the second suite.
Last and most certainly not least, the small suite from the ballet
. The plot concerns the dangers of eating too many sweets?the result of which is that these very sweets start dancing. You have been warned.
The Gothenburg players bring a lovely delicacy to the opening, ?Tanz der Teeblute.? Actually, this dance is quite slinky, almost like a ?Dance of the Seven Tea Leaves.? The scoring is magical (here and elsewhere). Interesting; the movement entitled ?Träumerei? is not idyllic Schumannesque dreaming, as there are some clouds here. A shame that the final ?Langsamer Waltz? does not find the Gothenburgers letting their hair down more, but there is a huge amount to enjoy here.
Well worth hearing, then.
FANFARE: Colin Clarke
Works on This Recording
Schlagobers, Op. 70: Suite by Richard Strauss
Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Written: 1921-1922; Germany
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