Customer Review

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not just beautiful: Baltimore SO / Alsop, 16 May 2012
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This review is from: Dvorak: Symphonies Nos.7 & 8 (Audio CD)
They say women can't read maps; well, be that as it may, some of them can read musical scores, and Marin Alsop proves again on this release that she can read them very well.

The Baltimore has risen to prominence on the international scene since they received such a great boost by appointing David Zinman as Principal Conductor in the '80s. Marin Alsop was on my radar at that time as the very accomplished conductor of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Zinman, now with the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, must have been a very hard act to follow, but as a career move, Maestro Alsop did well, and the Baltimore SO is still in great form, judging by the standard of the Dvorak symphonies they have recorded with her. Their playing is of an exceptionally high standard, and this is captured in these recordings, whether it be in the smooth string legatos, the fluid ensembles, or the vibrant tuttis: this is playing and recording of a very high standard indeed.

Ms Alsop is in danger of becoming something of a musical heroine for me: she rarely brings anything but the best out of the orchestras she conducts, and her shaping and honing of the romantic classical repertoire is just about faultless, give or take the odd slight emphasis or bowing direction.

Hard to pick out particular highlights, but the second movement of the 8th - adagio - is quite serene, while the final allegro is just "non troppo" enough, and with superb tonal realism from the brass section.

Yes, this is beautiful music, but here it is a bit more than skin deep.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 17 Aug 2013 23:15:55 BDT
And/Burro says:
Seems to me you should have rated this cd with 5 stars not just 4.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Aug 2013 09:54:22 BDT
Maybe, although it was a tough call. I often think 4 and a half stars would be the ideal rating for many cd's, as 5 should really mean that it was as enjoyable as it was possible to be, and perfection is such a rarity.

In reply to an earlier post on 18 Aug 2013 13:13:06 BDT
And/Burro says:
You make a good point Mr.N.Hazell. I can be a bit over generous myself but thank you for your review.
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