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Christian Thielemann - Pfitzner · Strauss / Orchester der Deutschen Oper Berlin
Hans Pfitzner, Richard Strauss, Christian Thielemann
Christian Thielemann - Pfitzner Strauss / Orchester der Deutschen Oper Berlin
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (8) - Disc #1

Near the end of his life, the great German conductor Eugen Jochum saw off a visitor to his Munich home with the rather unexpected admonition, "Don't forget Pfitzner and Reger!" Well, Reger has had it pretty good on recordi...  more »

     
   
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Near the end of his life, the great German conductor Eugen Jochum saw off a visitor to his Munich home with the rather unexpected admonition, "Don't forget Pfitzner and Reger!" Well, Reger has had it pretty good on recordings since then, while Pfitzner has been ignored, if not forgotten, until recently. Enter Christian Thielemann, a conductor who has clearly mastered the grand manner and who possesses an undeniable affinity with the music. Leading the orchestra of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, whose music director he became in 1997, he makes a welcome contribution to the Pfitzner discography in this, his debut recording for DG. Thielemann's accounts of the preludes to Acts I, II, and III of Palestrina, and of orchestral excerpts from other operas by Pfitzner and Strauss, are full of conviction and refreshingly old-fashioned in their lyric intensity and sweep. Especially lovely: the playing Thielemann elicits in Strauss's unabashedly Parsifalian prelude to Guntram, a work that failed at its premiere, but of which the composer was so fond he quoted some of its music in Ein Heldenleben. --Ted Libbey

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CD Reviews

A Treasury of Late Romanticism
08/09/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"All of the works on this CD beautifully evoke a lost world of idealism, heroism, chivalry, and courtly love. This disc has been a constant companion for nearly five years now. I have given at least five copies as gifts. I bought it because I am a Richard Strauss fanatic, and recordings of the orchestral passages of his first two operas, GUNTRAM and FEUERSNOT, are very rare. Thielemann's performances of the Strauss selections are superb. But I seldom listen to them, because this CD was my introduction to the works of Hans Pfitzner and I find myself simply listening to the Pfitzner selections over and over again. The CD begins with the Preludes to the three acts of his operatic masterpiece PALESTRINA. They are obviously indebted to Wagner's PARSIFAL. These works ache with desire, not for the sensuous, but for the noble, the etherial, the transcendent. The Prelude to the second act is particularly riveting and sublime. The other two pieces--the love theme from the opera DAS HERZ and the overture to DAS KAETCHEN VON HEILBRONN--evoke more sensuous but no less noble longings. The performances and recording are magnificent in every way. Every romantic will fall in love with this CD."
Magnificent Performances of Pfitzner's and Strauss' music
John Kwok | New York, NY USA | 09/06/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Along with his recent recording of Wagner's music with the Philadelphia Orchestra, this recording of Pfitzner's and Strauss' scores may be Thielemann's finest to date. Most noteworthy is the ebullient warm performance of Pfitzner's Palestrina from the Deutsche Oper orchestra, but I also enjoyed hearing two of Richard Strauss' lesser known works. I wholeheartedly recommend this CD as a splendid introduction to Pfitzner's music."
A welcomed disc...........
Paul | Houston | 09/06/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Superb engineering (wide detailed deep soundstage on high-end equipment) and a dynamite performance by the Berlin Opera Orchestra. Highly recommended A+++"