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Otmar Suitner - 80th Anniversary Edition Box set
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on 26 October 2010
Format: MP3 Download
Otmar Suitner is not the most famous of conductors mainly because he did most of his recording behind the "iron curtain" but the evidence of this set is of solid musicianship with considerable attention to detail. A sign of a good conductor is when an unfamiliar work is made to shine. The real gem in this set is the little Serenade No. 2 for strings by Robert Volkmann, a winsome little morsel featuring a charming waltz and a really catchy march finale, all stunningly played by the Dresden Staatskappelle. Throughout the set I was struck by the consistently better sound and playing in Dresden (first class orchestra) and Berlin (definitely second division). Other highlights are the Humperdinck Hansel and Gretel excerpts but almost containing all the lollipop items from this memorable and delectable scored delectably recorded. I was also very taken with the R. Strauss Die Frau ohne Schatten fantasia. Hugo Wolff's Penthesilia was another novelty but rather overblown to my ears but that is not Suitner's fault. The Dvorak symphonies are the unhackneyed 4th and 5th and whilst there a better performances of both, these are far from negligible. The Tchaikovsky String seranade is another delight with some stunning use of the recording in the pizzicato effects in the finale. The Weber overtures are competent rather than revealing. The Mozart arias not my scene. The Reger disc is another gem making an excellent case for Reger's oft-maligned works. I haven't covered everything but I hope I have given you a feel for what to expect - some real quality in the Tchaikovsky, Reger, Humperdinck, R. Strauss.