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Wagner: Overtures & Preludes / Sinopoli, New York Phil


Release Date: 01/07/2008 
Label:  Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog #: 419169   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 56 Mins. 

Low Stock: Currently 3 or fewer in stock. Usually ships in 24 hours, unless stock becomes depleted.  

This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Sinopoli, an inspirational conductor and always fascinatingly unpredictable, here gives us one of the most interesting Wagnerian orchestral collections yet available on CD. Recorded in the Performing Arts Center at Purchase, New York State University, the full reverberation brings a massive panoply of orchestral texture to the opening Die Meistersinger Prelude. Though, perhaps, tuttis are a little congealed (the CD is marginally clearer than the LP), better this than a clinical effect without fullness and warmth in the middle and bass.

In all three Act One preludes Sinopoli's approach is essentially spacious: thus Der fliegende Hollander relates to the others, seeming less melodramatic than usual. Sinopoli's slightly
Read more exaggerated pause is very arresting before the beautifully played cor anglais solo at the Andante section; later he uses the alternating ritenuto/a tempo passages to add lyrical gravitas to the closing pages. Although Die Meistersinger is measured in its pacing, the piece moves to its final apotheosis with an agreeably genial eloquence. The archlike form of the Lohengrin Prelude is superbly graduated, the climax slightly anticipated at the entry of the trumpets, which are strong and regal. The closing pianissimo is played very beautifully by the New York violins. Then comes the ebullient Third Act Prelude to end the concert spiritedly, but with no hint of coarseness.

The key work here, however, is the Siegfried Idyll and provided the fast middle section is accepted, this is a superb account to rank alongside those of Bruno Walter (only available on CD coupled with Bruckner's Seventh Symphony—CBS M2K 42036, to be reviewed later) and Karajan (DG), although it is more volatile than either. Sinopoli opens the piece with a gentle delicacy comparable to Walter and his closing pages are wonderfully serene, with an underlying subtle sentience in the espressivo string playing, to remind us that Wagner wrote this as a romantic gift for his beloved Cosima. The way the central section moves to its climax with a passionate forward thrust may be resisted by some listeners, but as in the other pieces here Sinopoli never loses control of the overall structure; the recording ambience seems ideal, refined in its detail.

-- Ivan March, Gramophone [10/1986]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg: Act 1 Prelude by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867; Germany 
2.
Siegfried Idyll by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1870; Germany 
3.
Der fliegende Holländer: Overture by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1841/1852; Germany 
4.
Lohengrin: Act 3 Prelude by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847; Germany 

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