Beethoven: Nine Symphonies / Vänskä, Juntunen, Minnesota Orchestra

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This is a hybrid Super Audio CD playable on both regular and Super Audio CD players. REVIEW:All of the discs in this set have been...

This is a hybrid Super Audio CD playable on both regular and Super Audio CD players.


All of the discs in this set have been reviewed individually, and in detail. Still, it's worth pointing out that this is unquestionably one of the great Beethoven cycles, and on SACD there's certainly none better. Osmo Vänskä manages to have the best of both worlds--an interpretive perspective enhanced by the latest scholarship, as performed by a great orchestra on a mission. And this is exactly what Beethoven needs: a point of view, and total commitment. There are no weak performances here. In the "Eroica" I was just a touch disappointed in the first movement when Vänskä's pursuit of the barely audible pianissimo threatened to become a mannerism, but that is about the only criticism possible to level at this set.

His Fifth blazes; the Seventh offers the apotheosis of excitement that never spins out of control. The early symphonies have charm and humor in abundance. The Fourth and Eighth reveal Beethoven's masterly command of movement and proportion with effortless enthusiasm. In the Sixth we find a perfect balance between programmatic description and symphonic logic. It's all capped by one of the great Ninths, with a perfectly timed Adagio and a gloriously sung finale. If you haven't been purchasing these discs as they were released, then get the box. It's one of the few cycles that maintains the highest standards all the way through, and the sonics are uniformly stunning.

--David Hurwitz,

Product Description:

  • Release Date: September 01, 2009

  • UPC: 7318591825265

  • Catalog Number: BIS-SACD-1825-26

  • Label: BIS

  • Number of Discs: 5

  • Period: ""

  • Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven

  • Conductor: Osmo Vänskä

  • Orchestra/Ensemble: Minnesota Chorale, Minnesota Orchestra

  • Performer: Daniel Norman, Helena Juntunen, Katarina Karnéus, Neal Davies