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4.4 out of 5 stars
26
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£10.27+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


on 16 August 2011
I bought this as my father had requested that it be played at his funeral. I had not listened to it since I was a child and it brought back many happy memories. It was a fitting piece to play at a very sad time.
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on 8 December 2013
I used to have this recording of Rimsky-Korsakov's famous masterpiece on cassette and loved it and when it came to updating it to CD I was very glad to find it on Amazon. It's simply a fine recording of Scheherazade by Seiji Ozawa and the Boston Symphony Orchestra for DG in 1978. Ozawa had a highly successful partnership with the BSO and their playing on this recording is of the highest quality. The sweeping and powerful opening of "The Sea and Sinbad's Ship" by the BSO strings is wonderful to hear with the lush woodwinds and strong brass setting the tone of the whole piece. Moreover, the strings in "The Young Prince and the Young Princess" are beautiful to listen to, with their power and lush sound.

Also on the CD is another Rimsky-Korsakov piece Capriccio espagnol played by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Neeme Jarvi. They give a fine performance of it and this is another reason to buy this excellent CD.
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on 15 March 2013
This has quickly become one of my favourite discs. Scheherazade is one of the best renditions I've yet to hear, done with so much passion and feeling. It may have been recorded in 1978 but the reproduction still compares very favourably with anything done today in terms of dynamics, tonal quality, stereo image and detail - an absolute joy to listen to. Capriccio Espagnol is for me an added bonus and everything you'd expect it to be with Neemi Järvi in charge of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra - lively, joyous and a sheer delight. Hats off to Deutsche Grammaphon for issuing such a well produced disc at an exceptionally good price.
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on 14 October 2011
I am still looking for the definitive performances on CD of these two works. These aren't it, but they provided some interesting variations on more basic servings.

The CD is labelled Deutsche Grammophon, Eloquence. An emblem denotes "Ambient Surround Imaging" but this is not explained anywhere, despite saying "details inside". However it may account for the surprisingly spacious, clean, and reverberant soundstage.

Firstly, Scheherazade: an Arabian tale in musical form by a Russian romantic composer. Here played by an American orchestra, conducted by a Japanese. Mmmm... could have been a dog's dinner, but turned out quite well. The original analogue recording was from 1978, but the digital transcription has been very well done indeed, suggesting that the master tracks were of a very high standard (as is the playing of the Boston S.O.). Ozawa's reading is a little off the beaten track here and there, with a wider range of tempi than usual, and occasionally disappointing dynamics within the orchestral sections. Strangely, here the opening tutti is the loudest part of the whole piece (mixing engineer go and stand in the corner!), but as the work unfolds you forget that.

Likewise the first violins dominate to a rather unreal extent: not particularly forward let alone shrill, but - just a lot of sound coming from them, sometimes at the expense of more interesting twiddlies going on elsewhere. Equally disappointing for me as a percussion enthusiast was the "downscaled" bass drum: often sounding more like hitting a punchbag with boxing gloves...

This all prepares you somewhat for the out-and-out quirkiness of Neeme Jarvi's reading of the Capriccio Espagnol. This is from 1988 and is entirely digital. The overall playing time of just over 15 minutes is not unusual in itself, but what is odd is the wide range of tempi. The slow sections drag a little IMHO, but the Alborada, and particularly the Fandango, are taken at breakneck speed, and the orchestra positively catapults from the final bars to the breathless end: impressively played by the Gothenburg S.O. it has to be said, no lack of togetherness amongst the frenzy!

Acoustically this piece is similar to the first, maybe due to the Ambient Surround Imaging. Excellent treble for smooth, sweet violins, airy cymbals, and clean but not strident woodwind and brass. Just a bit lacking down in the first octave, and missing the sizzle from the bows of the lower strings (alas, a common gripe) and the rasp of an unleashed trombone.

There, I hope this hasn't dampened your willingness to give this CD a try; as I said, these are not off-the-shelf stock performances, but you might find them a refreshing change :-)
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on 31 December 2013
Probably my favourite piece of music by one of the greatest conductors. The violin is beautifully played and brings tears to the eyes, brilliant.
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on 23 August 2015
A few years ago I saw Russian Night from Berlin with the Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Seiji Ozawa. So, I thought Scheherazade conducted by Seiji Ozawa from a Deutsche Grammophon original recording would be good. Unfortunately, it is not. The lead violin is difficult to hear unless the volume is turned up; then the orchestra is far too loud. I cannot be adjusting the volume every couple of minutes. It spoils the listening experience and becomes irritating. Had I read the reviews I would have noticed a reviewer mentioned this also. The CD is only cheap and an old recording, but the sound quality poor.
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on 15 March 2014
I love this music.. it transports you away to far off places... I pla it all the time in the car and it's just great.
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on 12 December 2014
I love this music, really haunting,It arrived really quickly and I`m happy with my purchase and the service.
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on 29 January 2016
enjoyed listening to it,has been a long time since i last heard any recordings.
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on 4 November 2014
Perfect Russian romantic music - melodic, lyrical and always easy to listan to.
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