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Sergiu Celibidache Conducts Bruckner [DVD] [2012]


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Sergiu Celibidache Conducts Bruckner [DVD] [2012] + Bruckner: Symphony No. 5 B Flat Major (Arthaus: 101639) [DVD] [NTSC] [2012]
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Product details

  • Format: Box set, Classical, Colour, DVD-Video, PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 5
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: Sony Classical
  • DVD Release Date: 3 July 2012
  • Run Time: 230.00 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007VLHP9K
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 97,568 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Sergiu Celibidache conducts the Munich Philharmonic in a performance of Bruckner's sixth, seventh and eighth symphonies, plus his rediscovered fourth symphony.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Bernard Michael O'Hanlon on 31 Oct. 2012
All suns must set. I never thought this maxim would apply to my twenty year allegiance to Karajan's performance of the Bruckner Fourth on EMI. The same comment is true of the DG alternative from 1976 and alternatives from Knappertsbusch, Klemperer, Furtwangler, Haitink and many others (I am afraid to look nowadays). If you need a new hubcap over the next few days, drop me an email.

Squirreled away in this DVD offering is the greatest performance of the Fourth in existence. It comes on two CDs which in itself is a mighty feat even by Celi's standards. Sony trumpets it as the `Rediscovered Fourth Symphony'. In truth, it is a live performance of the Romantic in Vienna with the Munich Philharmonic which has never put in a better day's work. In fact, it makes his EMI alternative seem like a run-through. The recording is demonstration-class and by a wide margin. While the DVDs are fine enough, the CDs alone are worth the price of admission. Sony - come to your senses and release them in their own right!

There is a deep alignment between Bruckner and Heidegger in their celebration of Pure Being and it radiance. Leibniz joins in the chorus with his wondrous question: why is there something rather than nothing? Celi is fully attuned to these considerations. Here, when the big chorale arises in the middle of the first movement in all its lambency, one is left awe-struck, just as much as the Apollo 8 astronauts were when they witnessed Earthrise over the Sea of Tranquillity. I have never heard anything like this - never. This is Bruckner as Creation. Not even Karajan in his DG performance imbues this passage with the same degree of celestial wonder.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By riccardo cassani on 3 Aug. 2012
Sony reissue on DVD recordings well known to fans of the Romanian director. We are in the early 90s and can no longer say Celibidache face just plain music: his performances are steeped in philosophy (Husserl's phenomenology), mysticism and physical acoustics. You can love him or hate him, but not avoid knowing.
Personally I prefer his Bruckner from the 60s and 70s (much more "human") rather than the 90s that seems to speak of the universe and the laws which provide for galaxy's revolution. But it is impossible not to be amazed by the extreme coherence of Celibidache's musical thought and his ability in rehearsing the different plans sound of the orchestra. The video also allows you to appreciate the rarity and the linearity of the last Celibidache conducting gesture now forced to stay sit by the difficult of walking (very different,indeed, from the most fiery and evocative showed in his youth) and to recognize the funny director's mumbling during the performance.
Rather more difficult to come to terms with the bonus audio Romantic recorded in 1989 in Vienna on tour. Without the support of the video's 80 minutes are running out of the reach of a home listening. For the last Celibidache I am convinced it was fundamental to participate in the "ritual" collective interpretation in order to appreciate the full implications already mentioned (philosophical, mystical and acoustic).

Sony ristampa in DVD materiale ben noto agli appassionati del direttore rumeno. Siamo agli inizi degli anni '90 e Celibidache non si può più dire faccia semplicemnte musica: le sue interpretazioni sono permeate di filosofia (la fenomenologia husserliana), misticismo e fisica acustica. Potete amarlo od odiarlo, ma non evitare di conoscerlo.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 19 May 2013
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For beauty of sound and control over an orchestra, this is brilliant. However, it's not for Bruckner lovers who think that even Bruckner's music requires animation and vitality!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 11 reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Epic Mastery!!! 19 May 2012
By BrucknerDoc - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Having these performances on LD, I'm ecstatic they are finally being released on DVD. I even took the time to transfer them to DVD myself some years ago. However, since they were recorded in an early HD-format (HDVS), Sony is missing the opportunity to release them on Blu-ray.

But, as a point of clarification: the 4th is represented here on 2CDs, not DVD. So, the five disc set is the original 3 LDs transferred to DVD. The remaining two discs are the CDs for a previously unreleased live performance of the 4th from February 1989 at the Musikverein, timing out at around 41min and 43min from info posted elsewhere.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Grateful and disappointed 11 July 2012
By Robert A. Alps - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
The people reviewing this set are those who have already accepted Celibidache's way with Bruckner, and I am among them. Like some of the other reviewers, I had these videos on Laserdisc (better quality than VHS) which were clearly identified as high definition video. The Laserdiscs looked better than these DVDs. I transferred the LDs to DVD myself and I think I got a better picture than these DVDs. I don't know what source Sony started with, but they could have done better by starting with the LDs. I have to believe that Sony could have produced a very good Blu-ray edition of these videos.

Each of the three videos on Laserdisc contained a 2-3 minute introduction that talked about Bruckner and showed pictures of St. Florian Abbey where Bruckner was the organist and where he is buried. The background music for that short video was a Bruckner organ piece and was very effective. I wish Sony had included this short video on at least one of the DVDs.

Furthermore, I would have appreciated an attempt at a surround sound audio track.

By way of comparison, I just received a Blu-ray Symphony No. 7 [Blu-ray] of the Bruckner 7th with Celibidache conducting the Berlin Philharmonic in 1992, his first concert with them since 1954. This was very well done and includes a documentary about Celibidache's early work with the Berlin Philharmonic and showing rehearsal for the Bruckner 7th.

All that said, I am grateful that these have finally appeared on retail DVD.
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Shame on Sony 8 Aug. 2012
By Young - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I do not like to write a review which would be less than 5 stars, but I have to make an exception in this case. I own the 6th and the 8th on laserdisc and the quality is fantastic. I wonder what kind of source Sony used for this release but I would say it is a total travesty. Truly the picture quality here is on a bad VHS level. The performance of the 6th is great, the 7th OK, and the 8th sublime on a par with Celi's own Lisbon concert. So all the more disappointing. I would put the 4th on CD here above the EMI version but tad below the one on Meteor label.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Bruckner in Excelsis 18 Sept. 2012
By Bernard Michael O'Hanlon - Published on Amazon.com
All suns must set. I never thought this maxim would apply to my twenty year allegiance to Karajan's performance of the Bruckner Fourth on EMI. The same comment is true of the DG alternative from 1976 and alternatives from Knappertsbusch, Klemperer, Furtwangler, Haitink and many others (I am afraid to look nowadays). If you need a new hubcap over the next few days, drop me an email.

Squirreled away in this DVD offering is the greatest performance of the Fourth in existence. It comes on two CDs which in itself is a mighty feat even by Celi's standards. Sony trumpets it as the `Rediscovered Fourth Symphony'. In truth, it is a live performance of the Romantic in Vienna with the Munich Philharmonic which has never put in a better day's work. In fact, it makes his EMI alternative seem like a run-through. The recording is demonstration-class and by a wide margin. While the DVDs are fine enough, the CDs alone are worth the price of admission. Sony - come to your senses and release them in their own right!

There is a deep alignment between Bruckner and Heidegger in their celebration of Pure Being and it radiance. Leibniz joins in the chorus with his wondrous question: why is there something rather than nothing? Celi is fully attuned to these considerations. Here, when the big chorale arises in the middle of the first movement in all its lambency, one is left awe-struck, just as much as the Apollo 8 astronauts were when they witnessed Earthrise over the Sea of Tranquillity. I have never heard anything like this - never. This is Bruckner as Creation. Not even Karajan in his DG performance imbues this passage with the same degree of celestial wonder. The slow movement is an excursion into the `forests of the night' and there has never been a more deep-domain exposition than this: Celi slows the music to a crawl thereby sucking the breath from the listener - and the climax which follows is seismic in its impact. The Scherzo is a bucolic interlude. Celi is famous for his `Stairway to Heaven' treatment of the finale's coda. Here, it is much better realised than the EMI alternative: Farewell to the Shadowlands indeed.

The slow tempo notwithstanding, everything here is masterfully sustained. Nothing sags. Other than the Karajan performance of the Eighth from 1944, I am hard-pressed to think of any other Bruckner performance (in whatever symphony) that comes anywhere near this account in terms of sustained mastery and Real Presence. This is life-changing. It is a Sign.

DVD-wise, the Tokyo Bruckner Eighth is somewhat grainy in its visuals. The Munich Bruckner Sixth is better captured. All three of them are stupendous performances. My favourite is the Sixth.

Blake tells us that a fool who persists in his folly will become wise. In Beethoven and Brahms, one could argue that Celi's ideas are little short of kookery. His Bruckner is normally exempt from this judgement. Here, his zany views are vindicated in a singular act of transfiguration.

To Paradise.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Essential Bruckner 4 July 2012
By Keki Dadachanji - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I heard Celibidache conduct Bruckner 4 at Carnegie Hall around the time this audio-only recording was made. That was one of the truly unforgettable experiences for me, and I did not think it was repeatable. When I read that the recording of the 4th included here was audio-only, I was somewhat disappointed. However, now I have heard it, and consider it the greatest single Bruckner performance of any symphony by any conductor. The sound is excellent, and the performance magnificent. To resonate to it, you have to be on its wavelength. It is very slow, but incredibly detailed and powerful. Unmissable.

The 3 symphonies on video give a good sense of how Celibidache projected the world of Bruckner. Technically these are not state-of-the-art. However, they are quite acceptable, and the audio is very good. Technical limitations in no way limit the impact of these performances.

It should be pointed out that Bruckner's 4th and 5th are also being released on video at this time. The 7th with Berlin Philharmonic is being released on Blu Ray. I have only seen the 5th, and it is comparably excellent. I do not know if the 4th will be a video version of what is presented in the audio-only format in the present set.

I cannot imagine anyone with slightest interest in Bruckner, or in Celibidache, passing these up. Get them before they disappear.
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