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Rachmaninov-Symphony No. 3 in a/Isle of the Dead/Scherzo
Rachmaninov, Svetlanov, USSR Symphony Orchestra
Rachmaninov-Symphony No. 3 in a/Isle of the Dead/Scherzo
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (4) - Disc #1


      
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CD Reviews

A natural, flowing, unforced Rachmaninov Third -- from Svet
Santa Fe Listener | Santa Fe, NM USA | 04/11/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This live performance of the Rachmaninov Sym. #3 defies expectations, at least for anybody who identifies Svetlanov with brusque, sometimes bombastic interpretations marked by plenty of energy but little nuance. I had all but given up on him after some distressing experiences (e.g., his Swan Lake for Melodiya/BMG), but this recording is full of naturalness and total commitement to findidng the emotional heart of Rachmaninov's music.

Which isn't easy to do. Go to Stokowski's recording on EMI, and you come away feeling that sloshing the syrup around is what Rachmaninov wanted. Even the relatively restrained Jansons, also on EMI, pulls us into the swooning lushness of Hollywood (near where Rachmaninov died in 1943). By comparison, Svetlanov's lyrical, reserved account adds much needed dignity to the score. He trusts the music enough not to soup it up, which doesn't pay total dividends -- one wishes for a few swoons after a while.

In this remastering the sound is spacious, clear, and natural -- a far cry from what we got from the Soviet era but most welcome. The USSR State Sym. Orch., which was Svetlanov's own, plays beautifully, even subtly. The audience rather spoils the pianissimo opening with too much nosie but are otherwise bearable. Having registered such pleasant surprise, I only need to point to the bargain price that this CD goes for, especially at Amazon Marketplace."