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Wagner: The Ring - An Orchestral Adventure / Jarvi, Royal Scottish NO

Wagner / Rsno / Jarvi
Release Date: 03/04/2008 
Label:  Chandos   Catalog #: 5060   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Neeme Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Scottish National Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Multi 
Length: 1 Hours 16 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Chandos and Neeme Järvi return to scenes of former glory in this latest outing from the RSNO. Henk de Vlieger's Wagner "Adventure" was recorded by Edo de Waart with positively mind-numbing dullness for RCA some years ago. Järvi knocks a good seven minutes off his predecessor's timing, bringing the whole suite in at just an hour, and a very exciting hour it proves to be. Vlieger's work was in fact pretty minimal--he simply stitched together the usual preludes and interludes, adding orchestral filler as necessary and moving the vocal parts to the orchestra. Das Rheingold, which has the least amount of purely orchestral music, required the most work, but after that it's very much the usual "bleeding chunks", with Read more a few bandages applied.

The Royal Scottish National Orchestra plays with its usual professionalism. This is not a Wagner orchestra: its sound is very bright, the strings not terribly rich, and it all comes out a bit too much like Star Wars; but then this music is a soundtrack of sorts, and Järvi's impulsive conducting gives a welcome lift to Siegfried's Rhine Journey and Funeral Music and to the final Immolation Scene. I also like the prominence of the woodwinds as well as the lightness of texture where Wagner is loud, but not necessarily heavy (think The Ride of the Valkyries).

There's also room for a bonus: the Siegfried Idyll, a work that usually falls on my list of 10 Most Irritating Pieces of Classical Music Ever Written. Happily, Järvi plays it like they did in the old days--that is, swiftly, getting through it in about 15 minutes and making it refreshingly charming rather than cloyingly (and annoyingly) sweet. Chandos' sonics, as always with these forces, are suitably brilliant in all formats. A very enjoyable release.

--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
Siegfried Idyll by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Neeme Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Scottish National Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1870; Germany 
2.
Der Ring des Nibelungen: The Ring, an Orchestral Adventure (arr. H. de Vlieger) by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Neeme Järvi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Scottish National Orchestra

Featured Sound Samples

The Ring: Götterdämmerung: Siegfried's Rhine Journey
The Ring: Götterdämmerung: Brünnhilde's Immolation