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Strauss: Ein Alpensinfonie, Don Juan / Blomstedt


Release Date: 01/07/2008 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 421815   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Richard Strauss
Conductor:  Herbert Blomstedt
Orchestra/Ensemble:  San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 10 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

Artistically at least, the Herbert Blomstedt/San Francisco Symphony/Decca Records partnership was one of the most successful of the 1990s. For the most part the performances were excellent, while the recordings boasted natural, high impact sound. This Alpine Symphony is a case in point: Blomstedt has clearly mastered the terrain of Strauss' musical travelogue as he renders both the big, dramatic passages (Sunrise, Summit, Storm) and the more delicate and quiet ones (Pasture, Elegy, Final Sounds) with imagination and authority. The San Francisco Symphony takes to this music as if it were newly composed, offering playing of high enthusiasm and virtuosity. The brass--given much critical and prominent music--steals the show. But the winds weigh Read more in powerfully, as certainly do the strings, whose divided parts in the opening and closing Night sequences make it seem as if the whole journey takes place in a dream. Decca's vivid, spacious recording captures the full dynamic range of the performance--and it's pretty wide, so be careful with your volume setting.

The disc opens with a quite muscular Don Juan--not the super-virile protagonist in Reiner's, Kempe's, and Szell's fiercely driven performances, but imposing nonetheless. Here the strings dominate, and the San Francisco players make sweet, swooning sounds in the love music. Don Juan and An Alpine Symphony are not necessarily two works I'd play together in one sitting, but this disc presents both in top-notch performances. Order it from Arkivmusic.com's "on-demand" service to hear for yourself.

--Victor Carr Jr, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
Don Juan, Op. 20 by Richard Strauss
Conductor:  Herbert Blomstedt
Orchestra/Ensemble:  San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Germany 
Venue:  Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco 
Length: 17 Minutes 35 Secs. 
2.
Eine Alpensinfonie, Op. 64 by Richard Strauss
Conductor:  Herbert Blomstedt
Orchestra/Ensemble:  San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1911-1915; Germany 
Venue:  Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco 
Length: 52 Minutes 26 Secs. 

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