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on 2 November 2017
A superb cd set. Well recorded and the LSO/ Gergiev give a good account of the 3 symphonies.
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on 12 April 2014
Very well recorded. Excellent interpretations with no trace of the modern tendency for conductors to take works of the romantic era
at disconcertingly up-tempo speeds, a practice which robs such works of their emotional appeal. Commendable performances on this CD.
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on 20 January 2018
I like Tchaikovsky ver much and Gergiev has an exellent feeeling for his simphonies
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on 5 December 2013
I am an enormous admirer of both Gergiev and the LSO heard in performance in a hall. Heard on these discs, terrible; muffled as though played through muslin. It's not the fault of playback electronics, my system is very good. To get some idea of everything that's missing, listen to the same team on the same label, with their Prokofiev Romeo and Juliette.Prokofiev: Romeo & Juliet (LSO / Gergiev)
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VINE VOICEon 3 October 2012
I thought I was going deaf. I'd put the first disc in the player, listening to the SACD layer, and could barely hear anything. I cranked up the volume - a bit better. Raising the volume a lot, at last things are audible. Why such a low level? I've gradually accumulated a fair number of hybrid SACDs over the years but have never had to increase the playback level so much. But even at audible levels, the sound is dry and seems to sap the life out of the first two symphonies. I couldn't work out whether it was the orchestra, the conductor, the recording, or all three that took the enjoyment out of listening to these tuneful early symphonies of Tchaikovsky.

Just in case it was me, or my equipment, I immediately followed up by listening to the 1st symphony as recorded (also live) on the other side of the Thames by the L.P.O. under Jurowski on the LPO label. What a difference! The orchestral playing is superb, pointed woodwinds playing with character, the whole experience completely engaging, a band clearly enjoying itself. The sound quality is top class (you wouldn't know it was the Festival Hall), plenty of immediacy and space. The second symphony under Gergiev didn't do much for me either. Neither is a 'bad' performance, but there are so much better ones out there. This time I compared with Giulini's recording with the Philharmonia on EMI. Again the recording is far more immediate and open. And it was made in 1956! The performance is compelling, the orchestra on absolutely top form, playful woodwind, strings really biting, especially in the final movement, the whole thing rhythmically tight. Terrific.

The second disc improves somewhat. I enjoyed the performance of the third ('Polish') symphony very much. Everyone sounds more engaged, and the sound is more open and has more presence. I liked Gergiev's touch at the end of the third movement, almost playful. This was recorded in the Victoria Hall, Geneva although I wasn't aware of that at first hearing. And I must applaud the LSO's piccolo player who is a joy throughout these performances.

Lovers of the first three Tchaikovsky symphonies, like me, will want to hear these recordings. But if you are starting out, either get the recordings with the LSO under Markevitch on Philips (not the Newton Classics reissue), or, my personal favourites, combining elegance, excitement, and occasionally a little humour:

1st Symphony: USSR S.O./ Svetlanov (Melodiya); Boston S.O./ Tilson-Thomas (DG); LPO/ Jurowski (LPO)

2nd Symphony: Philharmonia Orchestra/ Giulini (EMI)

3rd Symphony: USSR S.O/ Svetlanov (live in Edinburgh, on BBC Legends)
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on 1 April 2013
The early Tchaikovsky symphonies get less attention and here are great live recordings. Was at the concerts at the Barbican where these were recorded. Gergiev has the right touch when it comes to Tchaikovsky, lifting the music to a higher level.
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on 8 March 2013
Somehow not as I remember it.Lacks expression and gives no feeling of Russia in winter.Not a satisfying buy.Can't
reccomend it.
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on 7 November 2013
These are wonderful interpretations by Gergiev and the LSO of the so-called Tchaikovsky minor symphonies. A new depth is brought out of the music and Symphony no 2 is particularly good.
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on 2 January 2014
I haven't been a big fan of some of Valery Gergiev's recordings with the London Symphony Orchestra on their LSO label. For example their recording of Prokofiev's seven symphonies did nothing for me, but on the strength of some reviews I decided to try this two disc set of Tchaikovsky's first three symphonies. Gergiev and the LSO recorded them live in 2011 and I have to say in this case I was not disappointed. Their performances of all three symphonies are excellent, especially the Third Symphony ("The Polish"), which was recorded at the Tonhalle in Zurich. Symphonies One and Two were recorded at the Barbican and show as far as Tchaikovsky is concerned Valery Gergiev knows what he is doing.
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on 30 October 2012
This is a preformance which excells Muti philadelphia high voltage readings.The first two symphonies are full of character and atmosphere.The third presents a neglected symphony in all its beauty and tenderness.It is a preformance of rich and brilliant sound and totally electrifying. Gergiev is the tchaikovsky master and true disciple.
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