WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org
Welcome to ArkivMusic, the retail store for classical.net!

Bruckner: Symphony No 6; Wolf: Lieder / Chailly, Goerne


Release Date: 06/15/1999 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 458189   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Anton BrucknerHugo Wolf
Performer:  Matthias Goerne
Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 11 Mins. 

Low Stock: Currently 3 or fewer in stock. Usually ships in 24 hours, unless stock becomes depleted.  
ArkivCD  $16.99
Low Stock



This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

A juxtaposition of Bruckner's Sixth Symphony and Hugo Wolf's Goethe settings is not an obvious one, which fact hardly detracts from the qualities of either performance here, and gives this full-priced disc a total running time of just over 70 minutes. Given the recording dates, February 17-19, 1997, it's clear that the songs were not already "in the can" by the time the symphony was taped, and simply tacked onto Chailly's 57-minute traversal in order to placate cash-conscious critics like me! Quite apart from offering artistic evaluation, the ethical critic should, I believe, also try (wherever possible) to steer readers in the direction of best-value offerings. There are certainly cheaper Sixths than Chailly's, but few better Read more ones! It's worth reflecting upon the fact that Hugo Wolf, like Gustav Mahler, held Bruckner's symphonies in high esteem, recognizing in them attributes that were altogether new. The Goethe settings heard here include the three Harfenspieler-Lieder of 1888 and Anakreons Grab (Anacreon's Grave), also issued in the same year in a collection of 53 settings by Wolf of texts by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The novel Wilhelm Meister features the mysterious, guilt-ridden harpist whose deepest anxiety is that he might have fathered the child Mignon by his own sister; Wolf's compendium included 10 Wilhelm Meister settings in all. The Classical elegy Anakreons Grab was orchestrated in 1893, and the three Harfenspieler-Lieder in 1890, shortly after publication of the original songs with piano accompaniment. Baritone Matthias Goerne has the vocal presence and dramatic inflection required to do full justice to these Wolf settings, and Chailly's circumspect orchestral support matches him eloquently enough.

Bruckner's majestic A-Major Sixth Symphony has enjoyed something of a discographie revival in the past few years. This new version is definitely worthy of consideration alongside the finest of them, specifically Barenboim (Teldec 4509-94556-2), Wand (RCA Victor Red Seal 09026 68452 2), and Skrowaczewski (Arte Nova 74321 54456 2). All may be highly recommended, especially the least costly among them, an outstanding account by Skrowaczewski and the Saarbrücken RSO (see Fanfare 21:6 for a detailed review of this disc). There is just one budget alternative in digital sound, the patchy, indifferently played New Zealand SO version from Georg Tintner (Naxos), which though not worthy of comparison with the versions under debate here, should still appeal to new collectors.

Riccardo Chailly's new reading comes closest in manner to Barenboim's and in spirit to Skrowaczewski's. In terms of the former, this is what might be loosely termed "a young(ish) man's Bruckner." This is strenuously argued, lithe, and athletic Bruckner playing, entirely free of the Wagnerian posturing to which some conductors fall prey all too readily. In contemplating what might be tenned the "spiritual" dimension of this account, it is Rudolf Louis's remark that here "ethos" triumphs over "pathos" that is constantly endorsed by Chailly's unerring traversal.

Taking the opening Maestoso at a pace that's significantly slower than either Wand's (16:37) or Barenboim's (15:48) might seem likely to imperil Chailly's overall pacing of the movement. Skrowaczewski is almost a minute faster here, but Chailly manages to press the thematic groups forward with searching inevitability, with the result that the vast development acquires a gravitas that's far from easy to engender, save in a live performance.

The Adagio is, by contrast, on the fast side, and yet there's simply no denying that it works splendidly, at 16:44. Equivalent timings are: Skrowaczewski: 18:36, Tintner (slowest of these comparisons): 18:46, Wand: 15:57, and Barenboin: a safe 17:05. True, I had my doubts at first, but repeated listening has convinced me that Chailly is right, for the music loses nothing of its confessional depth at this more mobile Adagio pulse. Don't make the mistake of equating speed with expressive potency. Chailly lacks nothing of the "metaphysically sculpted, old-worldy, wholly unaffected manner" I noted with Barenboim. Chailly finds the same sense of ritual absolution and serenity, making this beautiful realization fittingly reminiscent of Tovey's famous homily—"Listen with reverence, for the composer meant what he said, and he speaks of holy things. ..."

There's little to choose between the respective renditions of the scherzo: All evince that neurasthenic unease in the music to excellent effect, but I like the way Chailly points the woodwind quotations from the Symphony No. 5 during the trio section. He is fractionally slower than his rivals in the finale, at 14:27. It matters little, since he understands the thematic structure so thoroughly that he has no need to get through the music any faster just to make a dramatic point. This is where Barenboim's otherwise admirable account begins to falter slightly, for, when in sight of major climaxes, he exaggerates dynamic transients, especially in the brass, and tries to make already sharply etched ostinato rhythms even more strongly delineated. But as I've observed previously, this is never done to an extent that's greater than the music can sustain, but Skrowaczewski, Wand, and particularly Chailly at his marginally slower tempo all achieve maximum impact without distortion. I have to concede the day to Riccardo Chailly; his is a finely calculated, emphatic, scholarly account, also wonderfully played and recorded. This is a Sixth I'll be turning to often, though not to the exclusion of several of the versions discussed above.

-- Michael Jameson, Fanfare [11-12/1999]
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Symphony no 6 in A major, WAB 106 by Anton Bruckner
Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1879-1881; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 02/1997 
Venue:  Great Hall, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 57 Minutes 30 Secs. 
Notes: Ver: 1881 original, Leopold Nowak 1954? edition 
2.
Goethe Lieder: no 1, Harfenspieler I "Wer sich der Einsamkeit ergibt" by Hugo Wolf
Performer:  Matthias Goerne (Baritone)
Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Date of Recording: 02/1997 
Venue:  Great Hall, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 4 Minutes 29 Secs. 
Language: German 
Notes: Orchestrated: Hugo Wolf (1893) 
3.
Goethe Lieder: no 3, Harfenspieler III "Wer nie sein Brot mit Tränen ass" by Hugo Wolf
Performer:  Matthias Goerne (Baritone)
Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Date of Recording: 02/1997 
Venue:  Great Hall, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 2 Minutes 32 Secs. 
Language: German 
Notes: Orchestrated: Hugo Wolf (1893) 
4.
Goethe Lieder: no 29, Anakreons Grab by Hugo Wolf
Performer:  Matthias Goerne (Baritone)
Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 02/1997 
Venue:  Great Hall, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 3 Minutes 24 Secs. 
Language: German 
Notes: Orchestrated: Hugo Wolf (1893) 
5.
Goethe Lieder: no 2, Harfenspieler II "An die Türen will ich schleichen" by Hugo Wolf
Performer:  Matthias Goerne (Baritone)
Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Date of Recording: 02/1997 
Venue:  Great Hall, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Length: 2 Minutes 19 Secs. 
Language: German 
Notes: Orchestrated: Hugo Wolf (1893) 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 A good find. February 14, 2013 By Richard C. (Lancaster, PA) See All My Reviews "I heard this symphony played life by the NY Philharmonic recently and liked it. I did not know the sixth. I noted in the program that the orchestra was playing the Nowak edition. I contacted Arkivmusic for help in finding this version. I was told that this was not the most frequently recorded version. But, I'm quite happy with it." Report Abuse
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook




YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN TO ARKIVMUSIC STREAMING.
TRY IT NOW FOR FREE!
Sign up now for two weeks of free access to the world's best classical music collection. Keep listening for only $19.95/month - thousands of classical albums for the price of one! Learn more about ArkivMusic Streaming
Aleady a subscriber? Sign In