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Nikolaus Harnoncourt Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
Price: 11.95 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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On Friday 2 October 2009 Nikolaus Harnoncourt was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the annual Gramophone awards ceremony in London.

Celebrating his 80th birthday in 2009, Nikolaus Harnoncourt was born in Berlin, grew up in Graz (Austria) and studied the cello in Vienna, where from 1952 to 1969 he was a cellist with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra. In 1972 he became Professor for ... Read more in Amazon's Nikolaus Harnoncourt Store

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Product details

  • Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Conductor: Nikolaus Harnoncourt
  • Composer: Felix Mendelssohn, Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann
  • Audio CD (26 Feb 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Teldec
  • ASIN: B000000SN5
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 234,110 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description

Franz Schubert ~ Symphony 4

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A lovely disc 5 Jun 2011
By enthusiast TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I am not the biggest Mendelssohn fan but must say I warmed greatly to this account of Die Schöne Melusine. I hadn't really noticed the work before even though I had a version of it in my set of Mendelssohn symphonies conducted by Abbado. Abbado's account is more driven and I feel the work responds better to Harnoncourt's more gentle way. It is a wonderful discovery and having discovered it I find I can also get more enjoyment than previously from the Abbado version! Sometimes a really good performance can do that for you: Harnoncourt has helped me to feel the greatness of this work and I can now enjoy the thrill of Abbado (knowing that I wouldn't always want it played that way).

And this Schubert 4 is so very different from the version in Harnoncourt's Concertgebouw Schubert set. It is a very different account and, more importantly, is also full of life and sparkle - qualities which the Concertgebouw version lacked. Perhaps Harnoncourt is always rethinking his approach to a piece he is playing - I don't know - but it is hard to believe the two accounts come from the same conductor.

I do not like the Schumann 4 here so much - it has drama and excitement but seems to lack some of the poetry I look for in this music. But it is an attractive enough performance and I am not sorry to have it. The Berlin PO play wonderfully, of course, and the whole disc - as a sort of concert - is lovely.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Harnoncourt brings the house down in Berlin with big-toned Schubert and Schumann 3 Sep 2012
By Andrew R. Barnard - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This live Berlin recording is the second time Harnoncourt recorded the Schubert and Schumann 4th symphonies. The Schubert had been recorded along with the rest of the symphonies on a accolade-winning set with the Concertgebouw, the Schumann with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. Harnoncourt is known for his rethinking, but here he proves that he rethinks his own ideas. While some aspects of his interpretations remain fundamentally the same, it's amazing how different he sounds in Berlin.

The earlier recordings were intimate and almost chamber-like. In Berlin, we're in for an evening of overpowering drama and big sound that is completely romantic. I'm reminded of Karajan's concentration, only Harnoncourt is far more sensitive than Karajan ever was. Anyone who doubts the Berlin Phil's superiority in German music would find it hard to deny the expressive power of these musicians, who play with an authority that's dizzying. Yet it's clear they're being led by the most committed maestro. Abbado never produced sounds nearly so bold and thick.

Yet in some ways Harnoncourt remains the same as in his earlier recordings. He's still fundamentally a deep thinker, searching for more than immediate impact. As overwhelming as the overall sound is, Harnoncourt still finds an inexhaustible supply of lyricism. He's no literalist--far from it. For me, he's a conductor with few peers when it comes to this repertoire. There's cohesive vision, a definite German sound, richness and depth, yet no immobility. We can take our time without the pulse dragging.

Should the buyer go for this recording or the earlier ones? I think he should get both, especially since the earlier recordings come along with symphonies not included here. But if I could keep only one of Harnoncourt's interpretations of these symphonies, this live disc from Berlin would probably win the day.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Superb recording 11 Dec 2004
By sami4_il - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Harnoncourt , "The King" of the world of the conducting is no doubt at his peak here. I know that some of you will say "He has many peaks" , but in this CD even he surpasses himself. The beautiful playing of the Berlin Philharmonic is just only part of the story , because Harnoncourt just knows how to elevate these guys , All the works in this CD played very well , but just listen to the Schubert's 4th symphony here , yes I know it is much more slower compare to Sawallisch recording in Dresden but that's the only way to catch and transmit the drama , after all this is "Tragic" symphony , A true pleasure , A must buy.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent sound and interpretation 16 Aug 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
The Berlin Philharmonic is at its best in these recordings, performing with a full, lush, albeit somewhat heavy sound throughout. All three recordings are exhilerating, especially Schumann's Fourth Symphony. Ironically, the Berlin Philharmonic sounds as if its luxuriating in Schumann's notoriously cumbersome and heavy orchestration, as Harnoncourt plays up the more subtle strengths of the work. All around, an excellent recording.
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