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Smetana: Triumphal Symphony, Bartered Bride Overture and Dances / Ang, Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra


Release Date: 05/11/2018 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8573672  
Composer:  Bedrich Smetana
Conductor:  Darrell Ang
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Bedrich Smetana’s ‘Festive Symphony’ was composed in 1854 when hopes for Emperor Franz Joseph becoming King of Bohemia were high. The splendid sounds of Smetana’s only formal symphony pre-echo later masterpieces such as ‘Ma Vlast,’ but his use of the Austrian Imperial anthem became unacceptable in the subsequent spirit of Czech nationalism, resulting in the work’s neglect. With its sparkling overture and lively rural dances, ‘The Bartered Bride’ secured Smetana’s international reputation and, as the only Czech opera of its day to enter the standard repertoire, it became a beacon for the nation’s 19th century musical renaissance. Conductor Darrell Ang is the artistic director and chief conductor of China’s Sichuan Symphony. He regularly Read more conducts orchestras across the world, including the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin. Ang’s first album for Naxos was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2016. Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Triumphal Symphony in E major, B 92/T59/Op. 6 by Bedrich Smetana
Conductor:  Darrell Ang
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1853-1854; Czech Republic 
2.
Bartered Bride, B 143/T 93: Overture by Bedrich Smetana
Conductor:  Darrell Ang
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1866 
3.
Bartered Bride, B 143/T 93: Polka by Bedrich Smetana
Conductor:  Darrell Ang
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1863/1870; Czech Republic 
4.
Bartered Bride, B 143/T 93: Furiant by Bedrich Smetana
Conductor:  Darrell Ang
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1863/1870; Czech Republic 
5.
Bartered Bride, B 143/T 93: Dance of the Comedians by Bedrich Smetana
Conductor:  Darrell Ang
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1863/1870; Bohemia 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Great Performance September 23, 2018 By Henry S. (Springfield, VA) See All My Reviews "Bedrich Smetana composed only one symphony, the Festive Symphony in E Minor, which is contained on this magnificent new Naxos CD. Best known for his symphonic tone poem Ma Vlast and the incandescent excerpts from his opera The Bartered Bride (also on this disk), Smetana's ability to generate lush, strikingly attractive melodies and shape them into a dynamic, rhythmically coherent score is readily discernible in the (relatively) infrequently performed symphony. Above all, the symphony glows with that unmistakable sheen of Czech nationalistic music, a characteristic that,I dare say, makes music from this small area of Europe so recognizable and appealing. Berlin's outstanding Radio Symphony Orchestra does the honors here, and it doesn't let Smetana down. The performance is spectacular- deep, spacious, and crystal clear sound from all sections of the orchestra, and especially from the RSO Berlin's brass and wind sections. As for the four Bartered Bride excerpts, they also receive a ravishing interpretation from the RSO Berlin, which plays these selections under conductor Darrell Ang as if it owned them. The Festive Symphony is relatively unknown, as far as I can tell, and by this I mean there are not that many recordings of this work out there. On the other hand, the Bartered Bride excerpts have been recorded on numerous occasions by a variety of excellent orchestras, testifying to the inherent appeal of this music. Therefore, this Naxos CD has something for everyone. For those who are unfamiliar with the symphony, the performance and technical excellence of the Naxos audio engineers has given us a recording which, in my opinion, is likely to be superior to any other recording of this work you can locate. For those who are unfamiliar with the Bartered Bride opera excerpts, the RSO Berlin's interpretation is as good as it is likely to get, even considering the wide exposure these selections have received. Finally, for those who know the entire program, Naxos offers a fresh, invigorating new look at this wonderful music. Bottom line: don't miss this one!! Highly recommended." Report Abuse
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