Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Johannes Brahms, Cristian Mandeal, "George Enescu" Bucharest Philharmonic Orchestra|
Brahms: Symphony No. 2; Tragic Overture
In 1877, the year following the success of his First Symphony, Brahms finished the score of his Second Symphony. Responding to critics who expected the earnestness and seriousness of the First Symphony, Brahms decided t... more »
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In 1877, the year following the success of his First Symphony, Brahms finished the score of his Second Symphony. Responding to critics who expected the earnestness and seriousness of the First Symphony, Brahms decided to make a joke about the second one when informing his editor that this edition should be published on condolence paper. Eduard Hanslick, one of Vienna's most important critics and a Brahms admirer, wrote that, "the Second Symphony shines like the sun, warming up connoisseurs and amateurs. It belongs to all those who long for true music." Conductors of the Romanian Philharmonic Society, founded in 1868, have included significant figures in Romanian music not to mention Enescu himself, whose name the orchestra incorporated into its title in 1955. The current conductor is Cristian Mandeal, who studied with Karajan and Celibidache. He has conducted numerous major orchestras and more than forty world premieres.
David Saemann | 03/10/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Cristian Mandeal is a splendid Brahmsian. I have his Brahms 1st, all the Concertos, and the German Requiem. Every one of these discs is rewarding. This CD of the 2nd Symphony is a major statement of the music. Under Mandeal, the Bucharest Philharmonic is a fine orchestra. The strings are beautifully blended if slightly undernourished. The brass are warm and not too loud. The wind soloists are perhaps not of international caliber individually, but they play together as a choir very appealingly. Mandeal's interpretation of the 2nd is very straightforward, without a lot of fussing over detail. Some of the tempos, such as the slow one for the second subject of the last movement, are a little different that I am used to hearing, but all of them are justifiable. The cumulative impact of the symphony is really strong, building to a thrilling conclusion. The Tragic Overture also is excellent, moody when need be but alternately crisp and propulsive. The sound engineering, apparently by a Rumanian team, is absolutely superb, clear, transparent, and full. Anyone looking to add a fine 2nd to his collection, and a bargain to boot, should be very satisfied with this disc."