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Re: [furt-l] Furtwaengler on Preiser

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  • samir ghiocel golescu
    ... I believe they were already published by Tahra. Tahra and Preiser are both serious labels, so a comparison (tape origin, transfers) would be useful. ...
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 31, 2000
      > Preiser Records (Austria) has just published a Furtwaengler-CD.
      > The 3 Palestrina preludes (Pfitzner) and a Brahms 4th with the Berlin
      > Philharmonic, from Wiesbaden, June 10th, 1949.
      > Does someone know these recordings? Are they worth to buy ?

      I believe they were already published by Tahra. Tahra and Preiser are both
      serious labels, so a comparison (tape origin, transfers) would be useful.

      > It seems Furtwaengler did only two Pfitzner recordings: these (performed
      > three weeks after the composers death) and the symphony in C.

      Unfortunately that is true.

      > Pfitzner and Boehm also recorded the symphony - are there important
      > differences in interpretation??

      Yes, there are. Pfitzner was a great conductor, a profound interpreter
      (v his Beethoven Third and Sixth, among five Beethoven symphonies
      recorded, or his Schumann symphonies, the later, alas, in poor sound), but
      on the little evidence we have Furtwangler was, in Pfitzner's music, even
      greater. In the C Major Symphony (a masterpiece IMO, an epigonic product
      in other's), Furtwangler animates the musical material with his unique
      sense of the musical form, applying a set of agogic decisions that may
      remind one what he does in Brahms' Fourth. Pfitzner's BPO "war" version
      presents clearer textures and a classical poise, but Furtwangler is the
      version I keep returning to, as the music seems more vital under his
      baton, the transitions never scolastic, but wilfully "pressured to
      *become*. The best sound for WF's C Major Symphony yet is on an Orfeo d'Or
      CD, a VAST improvement over previous CD incarnations (the shrilled sound
      of an AS Disc CD still gives me the creeps!). The same Orfeo d'Or contains
      the second best, IMHO, Brahms Fourth with Furty, a live recording with
      VPO, again in superior sound here than elsewhere.

      Re. Pfitzner's "Palestrina" Preludes, the composer himself left a gripping
      recording, but Furtwangler's own has to be heard to be believed. To hell
      with the imperfect brass playing in the second prelude.... when the BPO
      violins play in the third one, on the G String, you can hear an absolutely
      unique, even by Furtwangler's standards, color of sound, an "apocalyptic
      gris", redolent of a cosmic sadness. I wonder if the new(er) CDs with
      these recordings (Tahra and/or Preiser) do for the "Palestrina" Preludes
      what Orfeo d'Or did, soundwise, for the Symphony in C.

      regards,
      SG

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