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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars8
4.1 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 31 May 2011
This CD of Osmo Vanska conducting the Lahti SO in both versions of the Sibelius concerto is endlessly fascinating and rewarding, for Sibelians and general classical enthusiasts alike. This is in fact the world premiere of the earlier version. The first thing which struck me on listening to the 'original' version of the concerto, is that even small differences here and there add up to a very different piece. The original is longer, and lacks quite the same inner momentum and logic as the final version (unsurprisingly), even (to this listener's ears) slightly losing its way between 11 and 12 minutes. The dramatic moments for soloist and orchestra are still there, but it is understandable why Sibelius took some of the material out. Anyone who knows the concerto well will find it a very strange experience....

As with the acclaimed series of Sibelius Symphonies recorded by Vanska and the Lahti SO, the playing here is rich and intense, including moving solo performances by Kavakos in both versions, all of which brings new aspects of the work to the listener's attention. The CD booklet notes are informative and well produced, and the recording extremely detailed.

I can't recommend this highly enough. For me, it surpasses my previous favourite recordings, by Ferras/Karajan and Previn/Mutter, both on DG.
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on 19 September 2012
The final version of this is, to my mind, the greatest violin concerto written.Even had Sibelius not revised the work, one might still have said the same of the first version. There are substantial differences in places, and the second is shorter. To achieve this, Sibelius removed some music which meanders a bit, but also some passages of beautiful and exciting stuff. Which is better? It hardly matters with both sitting in the cd player. Kavakos is superb, and plays with effortless virtuosity and great beauty. Vanska and his orchestra are his equal, and with the first rate sound quality, this is a disc that no Sibelius lover should be without.
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on 15 January 2013
Excellent performance.

Stay close to your volume button because of the very dynamic recording.

This cd is interesting for both Sibelius lovers and music scholars.
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on 11 December 2013
I adore the Sibelius violin concerto. When I was a kid it was my favourite piece of music and it's still in the top two or three now. But I just can't take to these versions.

Yes, hearing the original version was interesting, but as a one off hearing. Yes, we have a superb violinist in Kavakos, who played with such tenderness. But as with the 5th Symphony, I just can't take to Osmo Vanska's reading of the orchestral score. I realise I'm probably in a minority, but I like the music to flow naturally which I just don't think Vanska allows.

No, not for me.
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on 16 March 2014
The recording is not very good, because the first concert is recorded at a very low volume, is annoying to have to raise and lower the volume during playback.
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on 18 November 2014
Very much MUSIC! /jan
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on 18 October 2015
Excellent.
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VINE VOICEon 28 September 2009
I keep trying to find the extra value in their expensive products but once again it defeats me.
0Comment|2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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