Top positive review
16 people found this helpful
Tchaikovsky- 'nuff said.
on 19 August 2002
I love the music of Tchaikovsky,especially the 5th symphony, but I have always been very lukewarm as it pertains to Herbert von Karajan. I have felt that Karajan would almost "sleepwalk" through some of his recordings- they were without any warmth or emotion- like he was just going through the motions. To my surprise, however, Karajan and his Berlin Philharmonic really hit their stride in these performances of Tchaik's 4th through 6th symphonies. Karajan takes the 1st movement of the 4th a liitle too slow for my taste,but the tension and emotion is there,and the rest is brilliantly played especially the Finale.
The Fifth is OK, but then again I'm very partial to the 1959 recording of George Szell w/ the Cleveland Orchestra. The fact that the Fifth is split on two disks does not help, but one can certainly do worse. However, Karajan and his orchestra are masterful with No.6. The final climax in the 1st movement is very powerful and moving, and the 2nd and 3rd mvmnts are top notch as well, but it is the slow Finale that makes the biggest impact. All the pathos and despair that Tchaikovsky meant to express are brought forth,yet without going overboard. One can not help but be moved and come away sad after hearing it. With the exception of the Fifth, this is one of the best versions of Tchaikovsky you'll find at this price with these names. Buy it.