Tchaikovsky, Strauss, Stravinsky & Shostakovich / Nelsons, CBSO
Andris Nelsons, today simultaneously Principal Conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, was discovered by Orfeo for the album. Christiane Delank, the long-standing artistic director of the label had taken him on to conduct the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra in the recordings of the two violin concertos by Dmitri Shostakovich with Arabella Steinbacher and realized that in him one of the great conductors of his generation was maturing, a development that took place at breath-taking pace. When he was entrusted with conducting the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, she won him over for the ambitious projects of a complete recording of the symphonies by Tchaikovsky (the first three symphonies were recorded, but no longer released following Nelsons’ departure to Boston) together with symphonic poems and other orchestral works by Richard Strauss and works by Stravinsky and Shostakovich. So, Orfeo had the privilege of documenting on album the Birmingham period, the first major international stage in Andris Nelsons’ career.
Excerpts of reviews from previously released volumes included in this set:
Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra; Don Juan; Till Eulenspiegel / Nelsons:
Don Juan has all the sparkle and the flood of testosterone that you might expect, dissolving into a string theme that is radiant with extrovert ambition. This is a reading full of passion and drive. Nelsons refuses to linger where some others do but keeps the adrenaline rushing throughout.
– MusicWeb International
Tchaikovsky: Francesca Da Rimini, Symphony No 4 / Nelsons:
In the last movement of the symphony Nelsons is just as blistering in tempo and febrile excitement as Svetlanov, and I never thought I would hear a living conductor equal that kind of intensity. These are great performances by a great conductor.
Stravinsky: The Firebird, Symphony Of Psalms / Nelsons
Nelsons' interpretation of The Firebird has much in common with Boulez's New York recording for Sony--hyper-detailed (those three harps really tell), yet never at the expense of excitement. Emphasis on clarity also flatters the Symphony of Psalms, particularly in the central fugue. His fleet tempos come close to Stravinsky's own and project the quick outer movements with plenty of punch. This is a very good performance by any standard, and the sonics are impressively natural. If the coupling suits, then don't hesitate.
Release Date: November 15, 2019
Catalog Number: ORF-C987199
Number of Discs: 9
Period: Romantic, 20th Century
Composer: Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Richard Strauss, Igor Stavinsky, Dmitri Shostakovich
Conductor: Andris Nelsons
Orchestra/Ensemble: City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra