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Elgar: Symphony No. 1; Organ Sonata [Hybrid SACD] Hybrid SACD

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Elgar: Symphony No. 1, Op. 55 / Organ Sonata, Op. 28
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Audio CD, Hybrid SACD, 28 May 2007
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Frequently bought together

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Product details

  • Orchestra: Rondalla Y Orquesa De Tenerife, BBC National Orchestra Wales
  • Conductor: Antoni Ros, Christophe Rousset, Richard Hickox
  • Audio CD (28 May 2007)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Hybrid SACD
  • Label: Chandos
  • ASIN: B000PMGSD6
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 42,984 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
1
30
19:29
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2
30
7:17
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3
30
13:00
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4
30
12:19
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5
30
8:16
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6
30
4:38
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7
30
7:45
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8
30
5:24
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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This recording, released in 2007, continues a tradition of very fine performances of this symphony by British artists. If there is any truth in the saying that performances of any music by artists from the same country have a special innate understanding of the idiom, then this disc offers some further evidence. This is not to say that Elgar is not a universal composer, of course, as witnessed by wonderful recordings by international conductors. These include Monteux, Jochum, Mackerras, Barenboim, Solti, Handley and Haitink, just to mention a few. In most cases though, they have been supported by British orchestras which may have been a help!

There have been very many fine versions of this symphony over the years. Both Barbirolli and Boult were pioneers, Barbirolli taking a more emotional line than Boult who underlined structural strength. Solti provided very fast and driven recordings based on the speeds taken by the composer in his own very early recordings. Haitink, on the other hand, brought a strong, sober and impressively unidiomatic view to bear as might be expected. Handley followed in the Boult tradition with a fine series of Elgar recordings including this symphony. Two of the newest are the ones from Mackerras and Hickox and both of these demand the greatest respect.

Both Mackerras and Hickox have the great advantage of particularly fine modern recordings which are able to fully project the full range of Elgar's scoring. The recordings easily rise to the challenges of the dynamic range and both conductors tread a middle course so far as interpretation is concerned. Both have more drive and excitement than Boult for example but are not as frenetic as Solti. Both offer more emotional steadiness then Barbirolli, especially in his later re-make for EMI.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I found the performance and recording quality enjoyable but it marginally did not match some older performances I recall in the quieter, more reflective passages in the symphony. My memory may be deceiving me but the "tingle" sensation I recall from listening to older recordings wasn't there.

Maybe there are qualities in a particular performance, or time and place, which trump technology. However, lacking a good turntable to play my old vinyl, this recording refreshes my acquaintance with a fascinating and subtle symphony.
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This is real Elgar
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine modern version to rival the very best 4 Feb. 2013
By I. Giles - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This recording, released in 2007, continues a tradition of very fine performances of this symphony by British artists. If there is any truth in the saying that performances of any music by artists from the same country have a special innate understanding of the idiom, then this disc offers some further evidence. This is not to say that Elgar is not a universal composer, of course, as witnessed by wonderful recordings by international conductors. These include Monteux, Jochum, Mackerras, Barenboim, Solti, Handley and Haitink, just to mention a few. In most cases though, they have been supported by British orchestras which may have been a help!

There have been very many fine versions of this symphony over the years. Both Barbirolli and Boult were pioneers, Barbirolli taking a more emotional line than Boult who underlined structural strength. Solti provided very fast and driven recordings based on the speeds taken by the composer in his own very early recordings. Haitink, on the other hand, brought a strong, sober and impressively unidiomatic view to bear as might be expected. Handley followed in the Boult tradition with a fine series of Elgar recordings including this symphony. Two of the newest are the ones from Mackerras and Hickox and both of these demand the greatest respect.

Both Mackerras and Hickox have the great advantage of particularly fine modern recordings which are able to fully project the full range of Elgar's scoring. The recordings easily rise to the challenges of the dynamic range and both conductors tread a middle course so far as interpretation is concerned. Both have more drive and excitement than Boult for example but are not as frenetic as Solti. Both offer more emotional steadiness then Barbirolli, especially in his later re-make for EMI. Both offer far better recordings technically than the otherwise fine Handley. The couplings may therefore be the final decider. Mackerras offers a fine performance of the well known Cockaigne Overture. Hickox offers, uniquely, an orchestral transcription of Elgar's organ sonata. This transcription by Gordon Jacobs actually works very well.

The Welsh orchestra are on fine form with Hickox and Chandos provide one of their very natural and wide ranging recordings. Mackerras has the LSO and the fine technology of a Decca recording.

In summary therefore, I would suggest that both Mackerras and Hickox are worth very serious consideration as 'only' or as multiple collection versions. At a lower price range I would suggest that Boult and Handley have much to offer. Any of these four would qualify as giving considerable satisfaction but at present I would be inclined to choose between Mackerras and Hickox. Both have equal claims on collectors who should be happy with either, or both.
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