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Schubert: 8 Symphonies / Karl Böhm, Berliner Philharmoniker


Release Date: 10/09/2001 
Label:  Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog #: 471307   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 4 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 4 Hours 10 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Anyone seeking a complete Schubert symphony cycle at mid-price may well find this set suits their needs. The performances were recorded by the Berlin Philharmonic during the period 1963-71, the "Great" C major being the earliest. The cycle now makes a welcome appearance as part of DG's Collectors Edition series of no-frills boxed sets. Karl Böhm's readings exemplify Old-World, which is not to say "Kapellmeister-ish", values. Predominately, his readings favor broad but never sluggish tempos, though there are some surprising exceptions. Listen to some of Böhm's marvelously bucolic scherzos, even the implacably trenchant one from the "Tragic" Symphony (No. 4), and you'll often think of embryonic Read more Bruckner. And there's a general and quite welcome conviction that (except in the "Great" C major) where repeats were added they should be observed. It's useful to contrast this traversal with Nikolaus Harnoncourt's Teldec survey with the Concertgebouw, or Abbado's DG cycle with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe: both give performances that are a bit more athletic and urgent than Böhm's.


But motoric drive isn't all, and Böhm was a great Schubertian. His series includes a very fine reading of Symphony No. 8 ("Unfinished"), which from the outset is reminiscent of Furtwängler's in its deft tempo management and serene authority. The move into the cello theme (second subject) in the opening movement is always difficult, and Böhm achieves a faultless transition. There's also a very good version of the little B-flat Symphony (No. 2) in which the virtuoso demands of Schubert's inventive scoring are superbly met by the Berlin strings, who play with lightness and brilliance in the first movement at speeds that are not significantly slower than Harnoncourt's. Symphony No. 5 is also memorably done, with an especially fine slow movement and an exciting finale. In sum, these are Schubert performances of high distinction, belonging to an older tradition that's still got plenty to commend it these days, thanks to Böhm's knowingly sympathetic direction and the fine playing of the Berlin Philharmonic. Recorded sound is fully acceptable in these new transfers.
--Michael Jameson, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Symphony no 1 in D major, D 82 by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1813; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 05/1971 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 29 Minutes 16 Secs. 
2.
Symphony no 2 in B flat major, D 125 by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1814-1824; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 05/1971 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 29 Minutes 10 Secs. 
3.
Symphony no 3 in D major, D 200 by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1815; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 11/1971 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 27 Minutes 4 Secs. 
4.
Symphony no 4 in C minor, D 417 "Tragic" by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1816; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 11/1971 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 30 Minutes 4 Secs. 
5.
Symphony no 5 in B flat major, D 485 by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1816; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1966 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 28 Minutes 23 Secs. 
6.
Symphony no 6 in C major, D 589 "Little C Major" by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1818; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 11/1971 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 31 Minutes 15 Secs. 
7.
Symphony no 8 in B minor, D 759 "Unfinished" by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1822; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1966 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 23 Minutes 3 Secs. 
8.
Symphony no 9 in C major, D 944 "Great" by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: ?1825-28; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 06/1963 
Venue:  Jesus Christ Church, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 51 Minutes 3 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Symphony No.1 in D, D.82: 1. Adagio - Allegro vivace
Symphony No.1 in D, D.82: 2. Andante
Symphony No.1 in D, D.82: 3. Menuetto. Allegretto
Symphony No.1 in D, D.82: 4. Allegro vivace
Symphony No.2 in B flat, D.125: 1. Largo - Allegro vivace
Symphony No.2 in B flat, D.125: 2. Andante
Symphony No.2 in B flat, D.125: 3. Menuetto (Allegro vivace)
Symphony No.2 in B flat, D.125: 4. Presto
Symphony No.3 In D, D.200: 1. Adagio maestoso - Allegro con brio
Symphony No.3 In D, D.200: 2. Allegretto
Symphony No.3 In D, D.200: 3. Menuetto (Vivace)
Symphony No.3 In D, D.200: 4. Presto. Vivace
Symphony No.4 In C Minor, D.417 - "Tragic": 1. Adagio molto - Allegro vivace
Symphony No.4 In C Minor, D.417 - "Tragic": 2. Andante
Symphony No.4 In C Minor, D.417 - "Tragic": 3. Menuetto (Allegro vivace)
Symphony No.4 In C Minor, D.417 - "Tragic": 4. Allegro

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