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Early Romantic Overtures


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£9.94 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Product details

  • Orchestra: London Classical Players
  • Conductor: Roger Norrington
  • Audio CD (25 Mar. 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: EMI
  • ASIN: B00BA7Z066
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 303,643 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Overture
2. The Hebrides, 'Fingal's Cave' Op. 26
3. Les Francs-juges Op. 3
4. Overture
5. Overture Die Zauberharfe (D644)
6. Overture

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ludwig VB on 13 April 2013
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The first thing to say is I was impressed by the choices on this CD. Recordings of collections of overtures do not seem as commonplace as they once were, and very often the same pieces are churned out, but this represents a more original choice.

Of the more commonplace overtures, Norrington gets through The Hebrides at a refreshingly quick pace to set it apart from my other versions (in common with other Norrington recordings the performances here tend to be on the brisk side). Despite the smaller forces Norrington acheives a degree of drama and power in the work.

The other works are similarly well played, but I should reveal my hand in that I don't generally favour the authentic, small orchestra approach. To me it is less important to ask how a work would have sounded than, given advances in technology and scale of forces, what would the composer of the time have preferred if given the option, and the authentics haven't convinced me yet on that one.

Given the size of orchestra these pieces do all lose some of their dramatic bite in some places, but not enough to mean this isn't a likeable disc. It contains some rarely heard pieces including Berlioz's excellent Les Francs Juges and Schubert's excellent Rosamunde which has mystifyingly become hard to find on CD in recent years, despite it's frequent (and misguided) use at one point as a finale to the Unfinished Symphony. As with the other performances, it could do with a little more weight for me but then there is excellent detail and it is enough for me to prefer it to the leaden version I have by Celibidache.

Worth a punt if you are not dead-set against period instrument performances and are looking for some of the overtures on offer here.
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By Stanley Crowe TOP 500 REVIEWER on 4 July 2013
The London Classical Players is a period-instrument band, and the period here is roughly the second quarter of the 19th Century. The brass instruments are "natural" -- I assume that that means "valveless," and you can gauge your taste for them by playing the beginning of "The Flying Dutchman" overture -- if you love that sound, and I did, then you'll love this disc, the original full-price version of which was issued in 1988. The digital sound has warmth and clarity, and it's ideal for allowing you to savor the instrumental textures here. Norrington conducts with much care for dynamic and tempo adjustments, which make sense in the context of the variety of thematic material within each overture, and the overall effect is almost of chamber music, even though Norrington can go for the big sound when needed. An added delight is that a lot of this material isn't all that familiar. "The Flying Dutchman" overture is the 1841 version, which, as I understand it, didn't survive even to the first performance in 1843. For this recording, Norrington went to the manuscript. The Schumann ("Genoveva"), Berlioz ("Les Francs-Juges"), and Weber ("Oberon") overtures aren't household words, but they are all full of delightful and varied music, and are performed with great spirit. Schubert's "Zauberharfe" and Mendelssohn's "Hebrides" are more known quantities, and they sound great in their period dress. Recommended -- especially at the amazingly reasonable price. (Personal note: a classmate of mine in English at Edinburgh University, Jan Schlapp, was in the viola section for this recording.)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
delightful and imaginative 4 July 2013
By Stanley Crowe - Published on Amazon.com
The London Classical Players is a period-instrument band, and the period here is roughly the second quarter of the 19th Century. The brass instruments are "natural" -- I assume that that means "valveless," and you can gauge your taste for them by playing the beginning of "The Flying Dutchman" overture -- if you love that sound, and I did, then you'll love this disc, the original full-price version of which was issued in 1988. The digital sound has warmth and clarity, and it's ideal for allowing you to savor the instrumental textures here. Norrington conducts with much care for dynamic and tempo adjustments, which make sense in the context of the variety of thematic material within each overture, and the overall effect is almost of chamber music, even though Norrington can go for the big sound when needed. An added delight is that a lot of this material isn't all that familiar. "The Flying Dutchman" overture is the 1841 version, which, as I understand it, didn't survive even to the first performance in 1843. For this recording, Norrington went to the manuscript. The Schumann ("Genoveva"), Berlioz ("Les Francs-Juges"), and Weber ("Oberon") overtures aren't household words, but they are all full of delightful and varied music, and are performed with great spirit. Schubert's "Zauberharfe" and Mendelssohn's "Hebrides" are more known quantities, and they sound great in their period dress. Recommended -- especially at the very reasonable price.
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