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Bruckner: Symphony 1, Adagio CD

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Bruckner: Symphony 1, Adagio + Bruckner: Symphony 2 + Bruckner: Symphony No. 4 Romantic (1878/80 version, ed. Haas)
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Product details

  • Orchestra: Royal Scottish National Orchestra
  • Conductor: Georg Tintner
  • Composer: Anton Bruckner
  • Audio CD (24 July 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Naxos
  • ASIN: B00004SYFQ
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 53,292 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Song Title Time Price
  1. Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, WAB 101 (orig. 1866 unrevised Linz version, prep. W. Carragan): I. Allegro14:39Album Only
  2. Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, WAB 101 (orig. 1866 unrevised Linz version, prep. W. Carragan): II. Adagio15:21Album Only
  3. Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, WAB 101 (orig. 1866 unrevised Linz version, prep. W. Carragan): III. Scherzo: Schnell 9:07Album Only
  4. Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, WAB 101 (orig. 1866 unrevised Linz version, prep. W. Carragan): IV. Finale: Bewegt, feurig15:55Album Only
  5. Symphony No. 3 in D Minor, WAB 103: II. Adagio (1876 version, ed. L. Nowak)20:34Album Only

Product Description

Symphonie n° 1, WAB 101 - Adagio de la Symphonie n° 3 / Royal Scottish National Orchestra, dir. Georg Tintner

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By DAVID BRYSON TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 Dec. 2011
Format: Audio CD
Georg Tintner died, by his own sad but understandable choice, in 1999 shortly after completing his Bruckner symphony cycle with this account of the first. Special interest attaches to this issue not just because this is the less-performed original version of the score of the first, but also because the disc finds space for another rarity in the form of yet another alternative slow movement -- the second of three in order of composition -- for the third.

Scholarship in the matter of different Bruckner versions is not something I can offer. However maybe I can be helpful to other non-initiates in the Bruckner cult simply by keeping my distance from that and saying how this particular set affects me as an interested but uncommitted listener. Those who often find Bruckner heavy going ought, if my experience is anything to go by, to find this version of the first symphony comparatively light work - I refer to the first movement at least. The conducting and playing must have a lot to do with this, which is not surprising when we consider Tintner's long-established eminence in rebus Bruckneriis together with the steadily growing stature of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Everything is as it should be in those departments, but the music itself helps matters in a big way. This symphony is one that I can envisage myself listening to repeatedly for enjoyment and not from some sense of duty to my own musical education. The first movement material is actually attractive rather than majoring in aspiration and soulfulness to the detriment of elements that seem to me specifically musical.

First impressions count, so there is my own first impression, and it carries me through the rest of the work.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Bernard Davis on 1 July 2005
Format: Audio CD
Bruckner waited until he was 40 to start composing, so there are no early works and he begins his great cycle of symphonies with this confidently mature work. This is music of the great outdoors on a vast scale. I find myself comparing it to Dvorak, but even in his New World Symphony (No 9) Dvorak never produced music of such scope as this. Mind you, anyone who enjoys that work should get to know this one as well.
The whole symphony has a tremendous energy to it. The first movement is propelled along by pulsing musical figures that drive it into a magnificent storm. The adagio reveals its heart slowly as the theme is gradually assembled to be revealed half way through. There are foreshadowings of Elgar here in passages that combine majesty with a noble regret, though Elgar never used so glorious an orchestral palette. The music never flags, though it does go through numerous transformations and tempo changes until its 55minutes are up. It sounds as if the Royal Scottish National orchestra are having the time of their lives.
Naxos were lucky indeed to engage conductor George Tintner to oversee in this cycle of Bruckner's symphonies. They found an artist who clearly loved the music and could inspire an orchestra to give beyond their expectations in order to produce performances that do it justice. He also had a gift for musical scholarship. He winnowed through the various editions of the symphonies, almost always choosing Bruckner's earliest scores rather than the revisions. Anyone who doubts his choices should listen to the performances. They are convincing arguments.
The encore is an early adagio to the composer's third symphony, one which went through a number of transformations before its final form. This is in no way just filler.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I can only agree with all the positive reviews of this CD.I love Anton Bruckner's music and I am very happy with this recording of Symphony No1.
Well done Georg Tintner and Naxos!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 12 reviews
35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
A visionary conductor reconsiders Bruckner 28 Jun. 2002
By Bruce Hodges - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Although the First is not the most popular of Bruckner's symphonies, it is nevertheless absorbing, not to mention tantalizing in its premonitions of the symphonies which would come later. The beginning of a new symphonic cycle can be an exciting event, and Bruckner's First, begun so late in the composer's life, is quite sophisticated - at least, in this highly evocative version by Georg Tintner and the excellent Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
This recording, the first of the original version from 1866, is very special, and Tintner's illumination will be startling for those who know the symphony. Some of the harmonic changes are almost radical, given the time period. The last movement is strange enough that it will have you rethinking the composer's work completely - no small feat. There were moments when I almost felt as if I were listening to early Schoenberg.
But small differences in the language are evident in the three prior movements as well. Without going into exhaustive harmonic detail, listening to this recording caused me to muse on how Bruckner's path might have changed, and music history altered, if this "first draft" had received overwhelming acclaim. It might have led to even more original thoughts in the subsequent symphonies. After hearing this recording, the revised versions seem, well, more conservative.
The Royal Scottish National Orchestra sounds magnificent, and I'm not even going to qualify that comment, as some have, by comparing them with other "more Brucknerian" orchestras. What has been accomplished here is huge, and the RSNO's beautiful, heartfelt playing must be considered in any assessment of success. They get the job done, and more so. The Naxos recording is gorgeous - one of their best - with glowing, realistic sound and the huge climaxes making a great impact.
But it is Tintner, who sadly died just as his Bruckner cycle was complete, who will be really missed. It is intriguing to imagine the heights he might have reached, had he lived to explore (and record) the symphonies further. And his liner notes - scholarly and persuasive - show us that he was a fine writer as well.
So I cannot recommend this disc highly enough, particularly for Bruckner fans - but anyone new to the composer will find it just as satisfying. All the Brucknerian hallmarks are here: the long phrases rising to ecstatic climaxes, the subtle chord progressions embarking on journeys to other keys, the glorious writing for massed choirs of instruments, especially the brass section. I only wish Georg Tintner were still alive so I could congratulate him on what he accomplished: a major addition to our understanding of this composer.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Very Very Good Bruckner 1 19 Nov. 2000
By David Rothstein - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is the 2nd CD of Tintner's Bruckner I have bought and I heartily recommend both of them (also the 9th).
One feels the presence of a master Brucknerian sharing his love of the music with the orchestra and with us. The notes enclosed were prepared by Tintner himself thus endowing the performance with an even more personal touch of the conductor.
Tintner presents in this rendering (of the original version) an expansive performance (opposite of Jochum) but just right, stressing the more heroic nature of the work. I particularly liked the 1st movement. I felt a bit disappointed with the 4th movement especially the climax after the 2nd (lyrical) theme. Maybe this is true to the original version but the almost total absence of the strings in this climax is disappointing.
The recording is excellent and the performance is very good. If I'm not mistaken the 2nd violins are positioned on the right (European style) and this is very enjoyable.
At the very budgeted price- a must.
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Tintner Does It Again 19 Jun. 2000
By "davidsbundler" - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Before his recent death, Georg Tintner bequeathed to the world the premiere recording of the original version of Bruckner's 1st Symphony. I would rate the performance as being 9 out of 10. The recording rates a 9 out of 10 as well. As for the version, anyone familiar with the usual "Linz Version" will not find many things very different. There are three passages in the finale that are somewhat different. Perhaps, a bar here or there in the other three movements as well. Nevertheless, I believe that this version has value since it gives us Bruckner's first thoughts. This CD lives up to the high standards that Dr. Tintner and Naxos have set. I heartily recommend the entire series to all those who are unfamiliar with the composer and to comparative Brucknerheads.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Spirited, committed Bruckner from a late-blooming conductor 26 May 2006
By Santa Fe Listener - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The Viennese-born Georg Tinter fled Nazi persecution of the Jews and wound up spending his musical life in New Zealnd, Australia, and Nova Scotia, far from the limelight. He rose to eminence as a Bruckner conductor largely thanks to Naxos, the label that used him for their Bruckner cycle with the Royal Scottish National Orch., a fine ensemble that itself was essentially unknown to Americans. Having completed the recordings in 1998, the 87-year-old Tintner committed suicide by jumping off his apartment balcony rather than face an agonizing end with terminal cancer.

His account of Sym. #1 displays how talented Tintner was. Early Bruckner symphonies already have the shape, intensity, and ambition of late Bruckner, but the melodies are less inspired, the orchestration hasn't found a cosmic dimension yet, and the counterpoint is feeble. Bruckner kenw where he was heading, and we can hear that, even though Sym. #1 wouldn't seem that satisfying if he had stopped here. Tintner doesn't do anything revolutionary to it--he just has a tuoch for Bruckner, keeping the rhythms alive, thrusting the climaxes forward a bit brashly at times, but always avoiding reverence and rhetoric. He makes this music feel genuine if not yet fufilling.

As an added bonus we get an alternate version of the Adagio to Sym. #3. In the thicket of Bruckner scholarship, which we amateurs enter at our peril, this 1876 revision is ocnsidered inferior for such things as the attempted Wagnerian string accompaniment to the main them on its final return, but weak or strong, Tintner gives the movement a reading as committed and enjoyable as the main work.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Worth hearing, but overall not a convincing performance 22 Aug. 2013
By Mogulmeister - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
A lot of people have praised this particular recording of Bruckner's Symphony #1, a truly radical piece of music that unfortunately has never received its proper due. I believe much of the praise is due to the fact that this is the first performance of this version, which reportedly represents Bruckner's first thoughts on this symphony before successive revisions, and is in fact the version that Bruckner conducted at its premiere. Certainly that's interesting...to a point. But then the better question is, at what point in the creative development process was the symphony best realized? If there are three versions of this symphony, this being the first, and the Vienna revision being the third (after Bruckner's 8th symphony was rejected by Hermann Levi, leading Bruckner to first lose it completely and then undertake panicked revisions of his earliest works), with the "Linz" version now the second (and not the first) version, which convinces most?

I have to say, the "Linz" version still is most convincing to these ears. Most of the differences are in the fourth movement, and while I do like some of his ideas in this version relative to his later ones, the fact is, no one can claim that the ending of the symphony in this first version is superior to the "Linz" revision--it's not even close. The fact is, if Bruckner didn't get the ending "right," the whole symphony really doesn't come together--and it doesn't in this first version, to my ears.

But the differences in the first version (this) and the Linz version are less important than the differences between how different conductors have interpreted this remarkable symphony. And sadly, if you came to this work for the first time listening to Tintner's performance, you'd question how I could possibly consider this a remarkable symphony that is a "radical piece of music." That's because Tintner puts across a snooze-fest, a slumbering, low-wattage recording of a charged work that in other hands utterly blows me away. Others have commented that this is a "heroic" interpretation, and I guess you could call it that, but however "heroic" the interpretation, it's lethargic, lacks energy, and seems pedantic because you hear only the "moving parts" without hearing the whir they create by instead coming together to achieve something far greater (which one other conductor has accomplished). This is interesting to listen to for comparative purposes, but anyone who thinks this is the last word on this symphony is missing out on something truly great--in other hands. However, I should note that the recording quality is excellent, and the playing of the Scottish National Orchestra is excellent. This is the same orchestra that played out of tune in Tintner's recording of Bruckner's 3rd and sounded like a fourth-rate orchestra?

Fortunately, there is one definitive and truly great performance of this symphony that is available, which should be a *mandatory* purchase for anyone who loves Bruckner's music. That is, the performance of Eugen Jochum conducting the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra on DG Bruckner: Symphonies Nos. 1 - 9. While Jochum's Symphony #1 is no longer available singly, the price on the complete set has come down considerably, and Jochum's performance of Symphony #1 ALONE justifies the entire purchase price--plus you get the rest of the symphonies too, some of which are remarkably performed (3,5,6,7,8).

Jochum's performance of #1 is not only a GREAT performance, but more than that, it's a DEFINITIVE one--meaning that once you hear it, there's no other way you can imagine it being played. It's superlative, and I lack words eloquent enough to convey how magnificent a performance it is. Jochum's conception of the symphony is a shocking and truly ferocious blast of energy that whipsaws the listener around sonically, rhythmically, and tonally (at times ambiguously so, particularly in the second movement) before finally reaching an overwhelming catharsis at the end in which pure sunlight burns through and utterly radiates. Even today, I listen to Jochum's performance and marvel at what an utterly original and truly radical piece of music that Bruckner wrote--and arguably it's the second most radical symphony he ever composed--after the 9th. I do not understand how so few conductors truly "get" this work (even those that have a strong affinity for Bruckner), and even less so, why it is so little performed.

But if there is any question in your mind whether #1 is truly a masterpiece and without question a great piece of music (albeit flawed, which I would acknowledge), listen to Jochum's Berlin Philharmonic/DG performance, and then come to your own conclusion. I'm still completely blown away by this symphony, and am thankful that Eugen Jochum was so brilliant as to illuminate its greatness to those of us lucky to have heard his performance of it, even if only in recording.
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