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Schreker-Orchestral Works CD


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Product details

  • Performer: Vassily Sinaisky
  • Orchestra: Vassily Sinaisky
  • Audio CD (1 Oct. 1999)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Chandos
  • ASIN: B00004GOWI
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 42,890 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.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
Listen  1. Die Gezeichneten: Vorspiel zu einem Drama (Prelude to a Drama), "Prelude to Die Gezeichneten"BBC Philharmonic Orchestra20:22Album Only
Listen  2. Valse lenteBBC Philharmonic Orchestra 4:19£0.79  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Ekkehard, Op.12BBC Philharmonic Orchestra12:12Album Only
Listen  4. Der Schatzgraber, Act III: InterludeBBC Philharmonic Orchestra14:38Album Only
Listen  5. Der ferne Klang: NachtstuckBBC Philharmonic Orchestra16:21Album Only
Listen  6. Phantastische Ouverture, Op. 15BBC Philharmonic Orchestra 9:55Album Only

Product Description

Product Description

CHA 9797; CHANDOS - Inghilterra;

Amazon.co.uk

The welcome resurgence of interest in the Austrian composer Franz Schreker (1878-1934) continues apace with this radiantly played and magnificently engineered Chandos collection of his orchestral music. Between the years 1910 and 1925, Schreker was one of the most feted opera composers in Europe, and it's from his 1918 masterpiece Die Gezeichneten ("The Branded") that the Prelude to a Drama (the curtain-raiser here) borrows its thematic invention. It's an extraordinarily opulent, often seismic, essay (the biggest climaxes come close to registering on the Richter Scale!), whose steamy eroticism Vassily Sinaisky and the BBC Philharmonic convey to rather more telling effect than do the otherwise commendable James Conlon and his Cologne forces on a rival EMI release. The two orchestral interludes from the operas Der ferne Klang and Der Schatzgraber inhabit a similarly voluptuous, almost hallucinatory landscape, and we also get red-blooded renderings of the early symphonic overture Ekkehard (complete with a floorboard-throbbing organ contribution) and the Fantastic Overture (written in 1904, but not heard until eight years later). The miniature Valse lente is simply entrancing. A generous, self-recommending anthology, not to be missed by anyone with a penchant for headily colourful, off-the-beaten-track repertoire. --Andrew Achenbach

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Christian Hoskins on 27 Aug. 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is probably the best introduction to Schreker's music in the catalogue. Not only does it provide a good cross section of Schreker's late romantic musical style, but the performances by the BBC Philharmonic under Vassily Sinaisky are superb.

The earliest piece here is the Symphonic Overture "Ekkehard" from 1903, while the latest is the Symphonic Interlude from "Der Schatzgräber" dating from 1918. All of the music is good, and some of it is outstanding, notably the "Nachtstück" (1909) and the "Prelude to a Drama" (1913). The "Nachtstück", taken from the opera "Der ferne Klang", features melodies of an enormously appealing sinuous nature and climaxes of the utmost romantic ardour. The "Prelude to a Drama" comprises the Prelude to Act 1 of "Die Gezeichneten" with additional music from Act 3 of the opera. The orchestration is shimmering and iridescent, and once again the music reaches climaxes of sumptuous power.

Sinaisky really has a feel for this music and the performances are everything one could hope for. The version of "Prelude to a Drama" presented here is superior to the rival version by Conlon on EMI and even outclasses the version on a Euroarts DVD of "Die Gezeichneten" conducted by Nagano. Similarly, Sinaisky's performance of the "Nachtstück" is significantly better the version from the Naxos set of "Der ferne Klang" under Halasz.

I would recommend to anyone who enjoys this music that they try the Euroarts "Die Gezeichneten". Although there are some small cuts in the music, and the production by Nikolaus Lehnhoff is somewhat bizarre, the performance of the opera is hauntingly beautiful.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Charles Voogd on 3 Sept. 2001
Format: Audio CD
Why is it always Chandos that give us orchestral works we can really explore in very good sound and even better performances? Schreker has been in vogue a little for the last 5 or so years and there're some recordings of his orchestral music available (Conlon on EMI, some on MP) but this selection beats them all. If you ever have wondered how Jugenstil could be painted in sound then try this.
Chandos is going to announce a second volume of Schreker's music with the same performers; that's going to be a feast too. Don't forget to explore Schreker's operas on disc. Listen to Die Gezeichneten (London/Decca, still available) and Die Schatzgraber (Capriccio).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By James Stuart on 21 Nov. 2011
Format: Audio CD
Beautiful music well worth having, even if a little sad (understandably so!). Disgraceful that it is not better known. The orchestral playing and interpretation is also excellent.
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By Thomas Clark on 24 Dec. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Great
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 8 reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Schrekers Schoene Klang 15 Dec. 2000
By Thomas F. Bertonneau - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Franz Schreker (1878-1934) belongs to that group of Austro-German late-Romantic composers slightly younger than Richard Strauss and Gustav Mahler who made their impression, mainly in Vienna, around the turn of the century and later faded into semi-oblivion, overtaken by the so-called Second Viennese School of Arnold Schoenberg, Alban Berg, and Anton von Webern. Alexander von Zemlinsky, Engelbert Humperdinck, and Franz Schmidt form up, more or less, in the same ranks; so, although younger, does Erich Wolfgang Korngold, whose sound-world is remarkably similar. The mid-century eclipse of these composers did them no justice, for each merited attention whether he received it from the critics or not. Schreker and the others share a good deal musically: Their idiom stems from Wagner, particularly the Wagner of "Tristan und Isolde." In the case of Schreker, the Wagnerian model manifests itself not just in the idiom but in the orientation to opera. Schreker wrote eight of them. His orchestral oeuvre consists of a Chamber Symphony (1917), which has persisted marginally in the repertory, a number of tone-poems, overtures, and opera preludes and entr'actes reworked for symphonic concerts. The Chamber Symphony suggests that Schreker might have maintained a stronger place in the repertory had he devoted more energy than he did to the orchestral genres. While indebted to Schoenberg, the Chamber Symphony offers a more appealing countenance, with none of the aggressiveness of Schoenberg's own First Chamber Symphony; the instrumentation - which includes a piano, a celesta, a harp, and a harmonium - makes a music that seems to hover, glitter, and glide among the pastels of a moonlit night. Alas, Vassily Sinaisky's program for Chandos excludes the Chamber Symphony, but what it does bring to our attention we ought nevertheless applaud. The most ambitious of these pieces, the "Prelude to a Drama" (1914), approaches the symphonic in scale and complexity; its rondo-like returning Allegro, with its syncopated rhythms, is especially exciting. The "Ekkehard" Overture (1920), takes inspiration from Viktor von Scheffel's similarly titled novel, a tale with a medieval setting about forbidden love, prowess in battle, and service to the Holy Roman Empire. To the huge orchestra, Schreker adds an organ, with its connotation of cathedral and religion. Both Sinaisky's performance and Chandos' sound beat those offered by Edgar Seipenbusch on Marco Polo, for some years the banner-carrier of this music. The CD also offer us the Symphonic Interlude from "Der Schatzgräber" (1920), the "Nachtstück" (1909) from "Der Ferne Klang," and the "Fantastic Overture" (1904). The quality of the playing and the conviction in the interpretations raises this CD far above the other Schreker anthologies, either Seipenbusch's on Marco Polo or Gielen's on Koch-Schwann. I think, finally, that the closest reference-point is Korngold; Schreker's music might have gone over big in Hollywood, had he lived longer, left Europe, and joined the other expatriate music-makers in the Californian New World.
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Decadence.... 17 Nov. 2000
By John Scott - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Chandos has released a CD of music by one of my favorite composers, Franz Schreker. The release contains the Fantastic Overture, Nachtstuck, Prelude to a Drama, Interlude from Der Schatzgraber, Valse Lente, and Ekkehard Overture. These works are performed by the BBC Philharmonic and Vassily Sinaisky. If you like his music and have enjoyed what has come out so far, I can't recommend this new CD highly enough. Are there moments of glitz? Well, ok--a few. Are there moments that sound like Capt. Kirk launching the USS Enterprise out into space with phasers set for "Dolby Surround?" Yes, but this is NOT Schreker's fault--movie composers know effective music when they hear it!
The "Prelude to a Drama" is actually the overture to Die Gezeichneten, expanded for use as a stand-alone concert piece. Sinaisky delivers a performance of exceptional clarity, bringing out the individual lines in climactic moments, which can easily sound like cacophony in other recordings. You will never forget the opening once your hear it.
The real standout on the CD is the Nachtstuck, an interlude from Der ferne Klang. It's rare these days that a moment in music will elicit a "Wow" from me, but the "Nachtstuck" does just that. Oh, how it glows, especially with Chandos' typically luminous sound. Listen specifically from 2'17" to 2'50". I really think the autumnal Mahler would have been jealous of this moment--what a wondrous sound. Is anyone else reminded of Norgard's 3rd at this point as well?
The other substantial piece is the Interlude from Der Schatzgraber. Again, Schreker displays his gift for melody, and supports his lines with some of the most jaw-dropping orchestral effects I have heard. Can anyone make a large orchestra, at full throttle, defy gravity and skip along as though it were playing a Debussy confection as well as Schreker?
The Valse provides a delicate foil to the heavier fare, and I especially like the Straussian
echoes in the Ekkehard overture.
Enjoy!
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
More Please! 15 Nov. 2000
By Charles Voogd - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Why is it always Chandos that give us orchestral works we can really explore in very good sound and even better performances? Schreker has been in vogue a little for the last 5 or so years and there're some recordings of his orchestral music available (Conlon on EMI, some on MP) but this selection beats them all. If you ever have wondered how Jugenstil could be painted in sound then try this.
Chandos is going to announce a second volume of Schreker's music with the same performers; that's going to be a feast too. Don't forget to explore Schreker's operas on disc. Listen to Die Gezeichneten (London/Decca, still available) and Die Schatzgraber (Capriccio).
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The tale of the peacock's tail 22 Mar. 2013
By Jurgen Lawrenz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Franz Schreker belongs to the generation around Korngold; and this juxtaposition (if you've not heard his music) is apt insofar as Schreker represents the ultimate opulence and sumptuousness to which that kind of style could aspire - before collapsing from the sheer weight of its own decadence.
Korngold went on to Hollywood; Schreker died relatively young in 1934, but as far as his renown is concerned, he was already on the way to being forgotten, after his operatic triumphs in the "Roaring Twenties".
This selection demonstrates through purely orchestral selections what kind of music this was. A hybrid of the most daring harmonic adventures of Strauss, Puccini, Debussy and Korngold, thriving on fat, massive chordal themes that just crawl along like an opalescent oil slick and are fitted out with unbelievably resourceful and recherché harmonic changes. Its the key changes that make the music move, not any internal events or melodies; and typically the chordal progression culminates in a massive climax which then makes room for the next episode. When you are first exposed to it, you might envince breathless astonishment at so much invention, until after three or four auditions it will dawn on you that it's a trick to obscure the absence of melodic invention.
Altogether, however, these works present a superbly organised soundscape of the kind that makes me wonder that the film industry has not discovered it. I mean the sheer beauty of sound and the constant harmonic iridescence are so rich, yet so formless, that a score without a real beginning or end should be ideal for the movie medium.
The playing and recording are magnificent here. There are occasional hiccups in ensemble, due to the unfamiliarity of the players with this genre, but nothing serious. It is worth buying this album for its sheer exuberance in non-stop purple patches.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The Vorspiel is the star billing here 17 Jun. 2007
By Classic Music Lover - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Some of the Schreker works on this CD were composed early in the composer's career, before he had brought his glittery orchestral style and indeterminate key signatures to to the apex of perfection. For me, the absolute gem in this program is the Vorspiel zu einem Drama (Prelude to a Drama), which is really an extended orchestral introduction to his opera Die Gezeichneten ("The Branded Ones"). When you enter Schreker's special soundworld, it'll transport you to another dimension. I once saw a film version of Hermann Hesse's novel Steppenwolf, and this music would be perfect for portraying the Magic Theatre (the music alone conjures up far more than any visual attempt could convey). Most of the other works are interesting and worth getting to know, but I'd shell out $18 or $20 for this CD on the basis of the 20-minute Vorspiel alone. BTW, Maestro Sinaisky is all over this music in a way that Conlon simply can't match.
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