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Early Romantic Overtures / Norrington, London Classical Players

Norrington,Roger
Release Date: 04/09/2013 
Label:  Warner Classics   Catalog #: 282742   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Carl Maria von WeberFelix MendelssohnHector BerliozRobert Schumann,   ... 
Conductor:  Roger Norrington
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Classical Players
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 59 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Amongst the popular overture titles found on this Norrington disc are two that are generally forgotten today yet are certainly worthy of a place amongst the chestnuts. These are Les Francs Juges (Berlioz) and Genoveva (Schumann).
 
Roger Norrington has conducted a wide repertoire on disc and in particular is at home with these composers for whom he has recorded a lot of overtures. He uses to good effect his knowledge of authentic 19 th century instrumentation which is a hallmark of the London Classical Players. This budget price re-issue with fresh couplings is aimed at the newcomer more than the seasoned collector, and so meets its intention admirably.
 
The orchestra
Read more play well and Norrington provides good readings. There is lot of sensitivity shown in the Oberon, particularly where the clarinet passage is emotionally expressive. Les Francs Juges has a firm introduction and then three minutes in brings in an unusually gushing theme with Mozartean characteristics. Although Die Zauberharfe is unknown by name, think of Rosamunde with its haunting melodies and you won’t go far wrong. This again is a good performance, with mellow woodwind, good emphasis and taken at an energetic pace. Der fliegende Holländer comes from the early period of Wagner where his compositions are more accessible to a general audience than his later works.
 
Technically, the recording leaves a lot to be desired: the wide acoustic provides a certain amount of bloom which although it flatters the brass and wind at times, the distant strings lack detail and the sound does not always do justice to the energy expended in the playing. In Der fliegende Holländer it is disappointing to find that the piccolo is unusually obtrusive in places to complement the level of the rest of the orchestra.
 
No notes are provided despite the space occupied by copious adverts for other CDs in the Red Line series.  

-- Raymond J Walker , MusicWeb International Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Oberon, J 306: Overture by Carl Maria von Weber
Conductor:  Roger Norrington
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Classical Players
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1825-1826; Dresden, Germany 
Date of Recording: 11/1988 
Venue:  No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London 
Length: 9 Minutes 0 Secs. 
2.
Hebrides Overture, in B minor Op. 26 "Fingal's Cave" by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor:  Roger Norrington
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1829-1832; Rome, Italy 
Date of Recording: 11/1988 
Venue:  No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London 
Length: 9 Minutes 55 Secs. 
3.
Les Francs Juges, Op. 3: Overture by Hector Berlioz
Conductor:  Roger Norrington
Period: Romantic 
Written: 10/1826; France 
Date of Recording: 11/1988 
Venue:  No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London 
Length: 11 Minutes 41 Secs. 
4.
Genoveva, Op. 81: Overture by Robert Schumann
Conductor:  Roger Norrington
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1849; Germany 
Date of Recording: 11/1988 
Venue:  No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London 
Length: 8 Minutes 28 Secs. 
5.
Die Zauberharfe: Overture by Franz Schubert
Conductor:  Roger Norrington
Period: Romantic 
Written: circa 1820 
Date of Recording: 11/1988 
Venue:  No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London 
Length: 9 Minutes 49 Secs. 
6.
Der fliegende Holländer: Overture by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Roger Norrington
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1841/1852; Germany 
Date of Recording: 11/1988 
Venue:  No. 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London 
Length: 9 Minutes 40 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Oberon: Overture
The Hebrides, 'Fingal's Cave' Op. 26
Les Francs-juges Op. 3
Genoveva Op. 81: Overture
Rosamunde, Fürstin von Zypern D797: Overture Die Zauberharfe (D644)
Der Fliegende Holländer: Overture

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