Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Mussorgsky, Stravinsky, Sgro|
The Celibidache Edition
Listen to Samples
Stunning display of brilliance and profundity.
Record collector | Salzburg, Austria | 01/30/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Having been a fan of Karajan's conducting for years. This DG edition of Celibidache was a blinding revelation. A form of minor enlightenment allmost. I instantly realized that the "sound" that Celibidache was producing was nothing like I had ever heard before.
Translucent, powerful and incandescent. Music making of an uttermost conviction. Needless to say, after this baptism by fire,
I felt compelled to donate my 148 CD's of Karajan to my local Salvation Army."
D. J. Zabriskie | Park Ridge, NJ USA | 01/24/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Nobody brought out the inner voices of an orchestral composition
like Sergiu Celibidache. This is true both quantitatively and
qualitatively. It is also true comparatively, no one else had
quite that special touch that Celibidache had with an orchestra.
It is important to remember that the young Celibidache did not go to Berlin initially to study music, but rather mathematics,
philosophy and languages. Only when these studies were complete
did Celibidache pursue his interest in music full time. This gave him a rather unique perspective on conducting. If the conductor is "The Composer's Advocate," as Erich Leinsdorf said,
than Celibidache believed he must also serve as the listener's
advocate as well. The point of any Celibidache performance is
to make sure that the listener HEARS everything the composer put
into the score, and hears it clearly.
This frequently led the maestro to conduct at unusually slow
tempi, but his purposes were always musical, to bring forth the
details of a score with clarity and make them fit into an organic
Celibidache eschews the fortissimo's one is used to hearing in
"Pictures at an Exhibition," and this can be disquieting at first. But further listening reveals a wealth of details and a
clarity of vision that other conductors' recordings of this piece
lack. Likewise, you will never hear such a thoroughly deliberate
pacing of "Sheherazade," but, oddly, this only reinforces the
brilliance of Rimsky-Korsakov's rythymns, while reasserting his
genius for orchestration. The choice of the Stravinsky pieces,
"The Fairy's Kiss" and "The Firebird" show clearly what Stravinsky learned from his mentor as an orchestrator. Celibidache also makes clear how and where they parted as composers. In fact, this performance of "The Firebird" is simply
beautiful, always elegant without a trace of overstatement anywhere.
If you love your Russian composers, you simply can't go wrong with this set. You will hear these familiar pieces played with
a clarity of purpose and a wealth of detail that is simply
Master craftsman at work in constantly though-provoking perf
Boneplaya | West London,UK | 04/09/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I first came to hear/watch Celibidache through a wonderful TV documentary about him a few years ago.I was mesmerised by his way with an orchestra (being an orchestral musician myself I could only dream of playing under such a musician),his rehearsal technique was extraordinary (well worth watching clips on Youtube and the like to see him in action)& he had the musicians playing out of their skins for him,complete & total commitment. That encapsulates his music-making,total commitment to & a clear love of the music that permeates every performance.It's not at all surprising that he had little regard for the studio,it's far too clinical a place to create something special (how he wanted every performance to be) and,for him,this place was the concert hall. These live performances capture the essence of his work wonderfully well (you can only imagine what it must've been like to have actually been there witnessing it all).
The Scheherazade here is the most beautiful performance of this work I've ever heard,it lifts Rimsky-Korsakov's music to a whole new level,such dramatic power yet such intricate detail captured simultaneously. Celibidache never lets any phrase go unnoticed & the shape of every little detail from all the players shows how hard Celi worked this band in rehearsals.The Prokofiev 5th Symphony is given a similar dramatic sweep & I've never heard this Symphony played with such commitment & drive.Celi completely has the measure of this work & sounds so utterly convincing this way,it's quite irresistable! The Scythian Suite can be a cacophony of episodic noise in the wrong hands but,once again,Celibidache has the measure of it & pulls out all the drama that is inherent in it,although it's amazing how many details he brings out that others miss entirely,once again a very convincing & powerful performance.
The Firebird has the same magic touch here that Celi brings to Scheherazade,this music is supposed to sound beautiful,caress the ears,and he makes sure it does just that but always with a tight rein on where the music's going,you can't wait to hear what he'll do with it next!
The orchestra is no LSO or Vienna Phil but that's the added spice for me,he's driving these players to the very edge of their ability & musicality & this only enhances the listening experience (no problems with players making the odd mistake here & there as I've heard both the afore-mentioned orchestras make a good few in my time-live & recorded,we are only human after all! Be prepared to hear a couple of crackin' splits in the brass in these performances but see them as a reminder of the fact that these are live,warts'n'all).
Celibidache's interpretations are not to all tastes,although I think far too much is made of his penchant for slow tempi.Nobody makes a slow tempo sound more musical & captivating as he did & I feel his judgement of tempi was always at the service of the music,if he felt it needed more space to come alive he slowed it down.
Time spent listening to these performances will only demonstrate that there are a fair number of inferior conductors through the years who have been lucky enough to stand out the front of marvellous orchestras & record these same works with little new light to shed on them & with a fraction of the communicative talent of this great man!"