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Stokowski: Wagner Symphonic Syntheses [CD]

José Serebrier Audio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
Price: £5.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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When Leopold Stokowski(*) hailed José Serebrier as "the greatest master of orchestral balance", the 22-year-old musician was the Associate Conductor of Stokowski’s American Symphony Orchestra in New York. His Carnegie Hall debut was hailed by The New York Times for the "great intensity, precision, and clarity" of his music making. By the time Serebrier had made ... Read more in Amazon's Josť Serebrier Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Stokowski: Wagner Symphonic Syntheses + Stokowski - Bach Transcriptions + Bach; Stokowski - Transcriptions Vol. 2
Price For All Three: £17.84

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Product details

  • Orchestra: Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Josť Serebrier
  • Composer: Richard Wagner
  • Audio CD (28 Aug 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Naxos
  • ASIN: B000U7V9A8
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 120,718 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. Das Rheingold, Scene IV: Entrance of the Gods into Valhalla (ed. H. Zumpe, L. Stokowski)Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra 8:14Album Only
Listen  2. Tristan und Isolde: Symphonic Synthesis (arr. L. Stokowski): I. Act I: Vorspiel (Prelude)Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra10:07Album Only
Listen  3. Tristan und Isolde: Symphonic Synthesis (arr. L. Stokowski): II. Act II: Liebesnacht (Night of Love)Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra20:56Album Only
Listen  4. Tristan und Isolde: Symphonic Synthesis (arr. L. Stokowski): III. Act III: Liebestod (Love Death)Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra 5:31£0.89  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Parsifal, Act III: Symphonic Synthesis (arr. L. Stokowski)Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra15:50Album Only
Listen  6. Die Walkure, Act III: Feuerzauber (Magic Fire Music) (arr. L. Stokowski)Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra 8:07Album Only
Listen  7. Die Walkure, Act III: Ride of the Valkyries (ed. H. Zumpe, L. Stokowski)Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra 5:37£0.89  Buy MP3 

Product Description

Synthèses symphoniques de Stokowski sur La Walkyrie, L'Or du Rhin, Tristan & Isolde (Mort d'Isolde), Parsifal / Orch. Symp. de Bounemouth - José Serebrier, direction

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Hybrid Rolls Royce works perfectly 7 Nov 2007
By Mr. S. J. Bonsor VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I'm the last person to be attracted to bleeding chunks of opera: unlike my father, who perversely prefers purely orchestral Wagner. Add in the arrangements by another hand, and you'd imagine this would be of little interest- but you'd be wrong.

Stokowski was such a flamboyant character that his fame has outlived him by quite a margin. Mention the name today and you're likely to come up with his large and spangly version of Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D minor (tie an `original instruments' enthusiast down and play him this at full volume....!). But he was also a great educator and expander of the repertoire. Clearly, playing full-scale Wagner operas in the concert hall was out of the question, but all that glorious music..!

What we have on this CD are fairly extensive orchestral extracts, the difference being that Stokowski has not stuck to the existing orchestral highlights but has gone into the vocal territory as well, re-casting sung lines as instrumental ones and adapting the orchestral palette to match.

The surprise is just how well this process works. Stokowski's re-voicing is generally subtle, not overblown. The results are cogent and satisfying tone poems which do not short-change Wagner in any way. Indeed, they are a stimulating listen.

The sound on this recording is extraordinary: I've never heard the Poole acoustic come across as well as this before. The playing of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra is superb- especially rich in the string and woodwind sections, and Jose Serebrier conducts the whole affair with conviction. Highly recommended.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wagner's and Stokowski's 'Lush Life' 23 Oct 2007
Format:Audio CD
I'll say this for Stokowski: he had no compunctions about gilding the lily. Wagner's orchestrations for his music dramas was (and still is) among the richest and lushest and most inventive of any in the repertoire. But for his symphonic presentations of Wagner's music Leopold Stokowski added here, subtracted there from the orchestration in order to make it, in his mind, more effective. For instance, to the skittering violins in the Magic Fire Music from 'Die Walküre' he added flutes and piccolos, making it more brilliant, for sure, but it's not exactly Wagner. Granted Stokowski came out of the era in which conductors often tampered with the orchestrations of the composers who came before them. For instance, Mahler re-orchestrated Schumann's symphonies. Still, when one comes to listen to Stokowski's 'symphonic syntheses' of Wagner's music one must to some extent put the sound of Wagner's own orchestration out of one's mind. If one does, one is greet with undoubtedly effective, even thrilling, sound. And that is what happens here in this recreation of several of Stokowski's efforts on Wagner's behalf. José Serebrier was, of course, Stokowski's assistant for a number of years and if I'm not mistaken this is his third recent CD of Stokowski arrangements; there were earlier CDs containing music of Bach, and of Russian music including Stokowski's 1939 orchestration of Mussorgsky's 'Pictures at an Exhibition.'

The big event on the present CD is Stokowski's 'symphonic synthesis' of three parts of 'Tristan und Isolde': the Prélude to Act I, the Liebesnacht, and the Liebestod. By far the longest section is the deliriously ecstatic Liebesnacht, almost twenty-one minutes long. It is a perfect lead-in to the even more ecstatic Liebestod.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Indescribable 11 April 2009
Format:MP3 Download
I'm not a fan of Wagner, sharing Mark Twain's opinion that it is not as bad as it sounds, but this recording, especially the sections from Tristan und Isolde, are hypnotic. The sound is rich and the performance is sure; this disk is a definite bargain. Try also Stokowski's orchestration of Pictures at an Exhibition from the same team of Naxos and Serebrier. Also worth hearing
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
As someone who prefers purely orchestral/instrumental Classical Music then this CD is a godsend!

I own several purely instrumental takes on the Big W but I rank this as easily one of my finest. The audio is excellent as is the superb playing of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra who have released many a gem on Naxos.

My only gripe is the non inclusion of Siegfried's Funeral March but that's just a personal thing - when you have great pieces like Liebestod, Parsifal and Ride Of The Valkyries then who cares?!

The sections from Tristan & Isolde are absoluteley heartrending - just beautiful, amazing, awesome music with some practically orgasmic highs & lows. And the balance of menace & nobility of Parsifal is a joy to hear. The word Epic comes readily to mind. And the majesty of The Ring excerpts is only too real. The running order is perfect with all the pieces working equally well as individuals or a splendid whole cycle.

Purists may sneer but the omission of vocals only allows the music to shine brighter and the rearrangements are not that radical & dare I say are for the better! Some of the detail here is enthralling with great use of percussion & effects at the right times. Apparently the intention was to reinvent these pieces as a set of symphonic poems - if so, then a job expertly done all round.

a BRILLIANT CD - worthy of six stars!!!
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