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Eduard Tubin: Sinfonietta on Estonian Motifs; Piano Concertina; Symphony No. 7
Eduard Tubin, Neeme Järvi, Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
Eduard Tubin: Sinfonietta on Estonian Motifs; Piano Concertina; Symphony No. 7
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (9) - Disc #1


      
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One of History's Greatest Unknown Composers
David Drucker | Cambridge, MA USA | 09/27/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Eduard Tubin is a figure who could stand shoulder to shoulder with all of the great symphonists of the 20th century. Why is his music not played? It's a simple matter of geography and politics. Tubin was born in Estonia and most of his career was overshadowed by the rise of Stalin. Unlike Shostakovich, who was able to live and produce (not without his own problems), a composer like Tubin in the Soviet satellite republics was a persona non grata to Stalin, who went out of his way to squash the republics and their culture.
Tubin emigrated to Sweden, but the Swedes had little use for him, and his fellow Estonians felt betrayed by his departure. The result is a career and music that grew from folksy nationalistic works, to embracing many of the trends that swept through Europe, to a tortured, yearning voice that finds itself in his symphonies 5 through 10, each more remarkable than the last. Although the Concertino is an earlier work, it is also spectacularly well written. I find that Tubin's music gets better each time I listen to it. His careful working out of one or two themes, his colorful harmonies and his vigorous rhythms are a delight. Hopefully some conductor (since Jarvi is now near retirement) will take up Tubin's cause - he deserves it."
Tubin Performed By Committed Champions
Moldyoldie | Motown, USA | 06/18/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I discovered the music of Estonian composer Eduard Tubin when this series of recordings from fellow countryman Neeme Järvi on the BIS label was first released sometime in the mid-late '80s. For the most part, Tubin is very accessible and quite tuneful with an idiom seemingly borne of twentieth century romanticism a la Copland and Barber, but which borrows heavily from Estonian folk melodies and rhythms. The Sinfonietta on Estonian Motifs, written when the composer was 35, is a delightful example of his working of a simple theme with colorful harmonies and features pensive soloing from violin and horn.

The Concertino for Piano and Orchestra dates from the final years of WWII when the composer was expatriated in Sweden from his native Estonia. It further displays an aesthetic of 20th century romanticism; certainly exemplary, dutifully performed and pleasant enough -- and this morning serving as something of an "emotional salve".

The Symphony No. 7 was completed in 1958 and sounds very modest in comparison with some of his more bombastic others. We hear mostly strings and winds working through a seemingly narrow thematic scheme. Though the progressions are quite lyrical and often expressive, I'm afraid the symphony as a whole ultimately fails to satisfy. Perhaps subsequent hearings will prove different."