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Rachmaninov: Symphony No.2

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Vasily Petrenko was born in 1976 and started his music education at the St Petersburg Capella Boys Music School – the oldest music school in Russia. He then studied at the St Petersburg Conservatoire and has also participated in masterclasses with such major figures as Ilya Musin, Mariss Jansons, Yuri Temirkanov and Esa-Pekka Salonen. Between 1994 and 1997, Petrenko was Resident ... Read more in Amazon's Vasily Petrenko Store

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Rachmaninov: Symphony No.2 + Rachmaninov: Symphony No. 1 + Rachmaninov: Symphony No 3
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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Oct. 2012)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: EMI
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 77,428 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song TitleArtist Time Price
Listen  1. Dances from Aleko: Women's DanceVasily Petrenko/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra 5:01£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Dances from Aleko: IntermezzoVasily Petrenko/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra 2:34£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Dances from Aleko: Men's DanceVasily Petrenko/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra 4:50£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Symphony No.2 in E minor Op.27: Largo - Allegro moderatoVasily Petrenko/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra23:22Album Only
Listen  5. Symphony No.2 in E minor Op.27: Allegro moltoVasily Petrenko/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra 9:51£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Symphony No.2 in E minor Op.27: AdagioVasily Petrenko/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra14:00Album Only
Listen  7. Symphony No.2 in E minor Op.27: Allegro vivaceVasily Petrenko/Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra13:24Album Only

Product Description

EMI 9154732; EMI ITALIANA - Italia; Classica Orchestrale

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ralph Moore TOP 50 REVIEWER on 5 Dec. 2012
Format: Audio CD
I delayed purchasing this CD as I already had several very fine versions of this symphony including those by Ormandy, Rachmaninov's friend and only champion for many years, Rozhdestvensky and Vernon Handley with the RPO but this eclipses them all, presenting this music in the most convincing interpretation yet, despite taking the risk of including the first movement repeat, thereby extending its duration beyond what some consider advisable.

That is certainly not the case here: instead of souping up the Schmaltz, Petrenko goes for a lean, propulsive account of this symphony in which every bar breathes passion and commitment. The RLPO plays out of its skin, conjuring up glowing colours and emphasising the lyrical without resorting to excessive application of rubato. The opening Largo is full of brooding menace, Petrenko gradually building pace and tension with an unerring ear. Both Allegro movements are memorable for their drive and brio, the triumphant climax to the Finale leaving the listener breathless. Central to the symphony of course is the famous Adagio; again, Petrenko catches its swooning ecstasy without lingering.

The hors d'oeuvre is the three dances from "Aleko", sombre, exotic and beautifully scored to give aural prominence to the lower tessitura woodwind and strings; the concluding "Men's Dance" is a wild orgy of sound.

A great disc, a worthy continuation of Petrenko's acclaimed Rachmaninov series with the RLPO. (The timing for track 6 is wrong; it's 13:55.)
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Santa Fe Listener on 22 Oct. 2012
Format: Audio CD
This is an eagerly anticipated release. It didn't take long for everyone to realize that the Royal Liverpool Phil. had a musical star in Vasily Petrenko, their boyish thirtysomething conductor. He debuted with the orchestra in 2004 at the age of 28 with brilliant promise. No one spoke of promise after a concert or two; they were already floored. Here was a major talent on the order, perhaps, of Bernstein and Karajan. the musicians loved Petrenko as much as the critics, because he made them sound like heroes.

Petrenko recently rose from Naxos to a major label, EMI, and he launched a Rachmaninov symphony cycle with a recording of Sym. #3 that was revelatory, elevating a score that many thought was inferior to the more famous Rachmaninov Second. Here is the Second, and Petrenko brings to it the same warmth and intuitive musical gifts that made the earlier record so captivating. Still, he faces a challenge, because this is a score that has gone from relative obscurity - when I was in college, almost no one played it in America but Eugene Ormandy, a personal friend of Rachmaninov's - to a standard in the orchestral repertoire. In just the recent past there have been acclaimed recordings by Antonio Pappano and Valery Gergiev. the latter was especially fine, as you'd expect from the premier conductor from post-soviet Russia and a world-class London Sym.

By comparison, Petrenko can't offer a world-class orchestra, but it doesn't matter. From the very first note this is a personal reading whose every gesture makes you lean forward, eager to hear what comes next. Swoopy, syrupy Rachaninov disappears. We are in a plaintive world filled with pain and ecstasy.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Entartete Musik on 17 Nov. 2012
Format: Audio CD
Rachmaninoff's Second Symphony is a passionate work, but it's also a story of hard-earned triumph. Over-emphasise the romance, as so many do, and it can feel amorously obese. Not so Vasily Petrenko's new EMI recording with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. This is one of the most pugilistic accounts you'll experience on disc. While such an approach cannot quite tell the whole story, it's nonetheless a bit of a revelation.

All too often, this heartfelt work is bogged down in tooth-rotting self-indulgence. Antonio Pappano's 2011 recording with the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia was so intent on underlining the emotions that he stopped the work dead in its tracks. Gergiev's 2010 account with the LSO had a much better balance of fire and ice (though it couldn't match the Sibelian grandeur of Tadaaki Otaka's recording with the BBC NOW). Here, Petrenko keeps romance at arm's length in what is a direct and sometimes violent interpretation.

A dark cloud hangs over the first movement. The cor anglais solo sounds in Siberian isolation, before the main allegro's smooth surfaces are undercut by chattering detail. Timpani pierce spectacularly through the textures, indicating that Rachmaninoff's symphonic life depended on this retort to the failure of his first symphony. Contrasting rather than repeating emotions, the heart-on-sleeve second subject offers a real sense of release.

Such an intense approach poses a few problems. The woodwind can sound shrill and there's a noticeable error in the third movement (around 10:52). Although it can feel more like a live account than a studio take, it luckily has that level of commitment and thrill.
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