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Beethoven: Symphonies No. 2 & No. 5

Douglas Boyd Audio CD
2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 18.58 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Audio CD (19 Dec 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Music Company (London) Ltd
  • ASIN: B00022LZWI
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 81,950 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

Product Description

The vibrancy and vitality of the Manchester Camerata, one of the musical gems of North West England, is about to be discovered by a wider public with the launch of their new budget series on Avie. With a repertoire spanning five centuries, the ensemble and their Principal Conductor Douglas Boyd, go straight to the heart of the symphonic repertoire on their Avie debut, with two Beethoven symphonies. The Manchester Camerata was established by BBC Radio in 1972 and their name was inspired by the Florentine Camerata, the 16th century group of artists who met regularly to share ideas and discuss cultural affairs. A similar spirit of camaraderie inspires their modern counterpart.

Critical acclaim for the Manchester Camerata and Douglas Boyd:

"The secret of Boyd's success is not only that he is young, enthusiastic and keen to make every concert a rewarding experience (though all of that is true), but also that he is a rarely gifted musician...If ever there was an argument for going back to playing Beethoven with chamber orchestra forces instead of late 19th century style big battalions, this was it: with a wide range of dynamic, drama in full measure, and superb clarity." - Manchester Evening News on an all-Beethoven concert

"I doubt you could hear a better concert performance anywhere" - Manchester Evening News on a performance of Bach's B Minor Mass

"Astonishing" - The Boston Globe

Manchester Camerata, Douglas Boyd (conductor)

Product Description

Symphonies n°2, op.36 & n°5, op.67 / Manchester Camerata - Douglas Boyd, direction

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Poor Excuse for Beethoven 6 Sep 2004
By Paul D
Format:Audio CD
Never having heard of the Manchester Camerata or Douglas Boyd, I was intrigued enough to purchase their recording of this great symphony. Beethoven is one of the greatest composers, and the Fifth Symphony is one of the landmark works in the Western Canon. I have over thirty recordings of this core repertoire, but I'm sorry to say that this is near the bottom of the pile.
A chamber orchestra with period performance practices is all very well in Beethoven's first two symphonies, but anything post-Eroica calls for a full orchestra. The second symphony first. In the first movement, the string tone is very thin, and the tempo is sluggish, meaning that the rhythm is never adequately established. The lack of portamenti imparts a continual "stop-start" feel to what should be smooth flowing music. For comparison I chose only other recent recordings, Abbado with the Berlin Philharmonic, Harnoncourt conducting the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, and Rattle's 2003 account with the Vienna forces. As far as the First Movement is concerned, I found Abbado's reading wonderfully warm, bright and flowing with a charm typical of the Berlin players. In Harnoncourt, the warm vibrato lends a necessary smoothness to the music, as well as a consistent pulse which means that the music never drags. There is also more immediacy in the climaxes. Rattle's account has a vibrant momentum, and a truly beguiling entry into the march-like second subject. His use of sforzandi is intelligent and well-controlled.
The emotional core of the Second Symphony is the long and beautiful second movement. Of the recordings I was using for comparison, Boyd is the slowest in this movement, coming in at 10'58, exactly a minute longer than Abbado. It seems that Boyd is one of those conductors who believe that sluggish equals depth.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed 19 Dec 2012
By ken100 - Published on
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
The volume of sound produced by this ensemble in forte passages, such as the start of the fifth symphony, is in sufficient.
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