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Cat. No. CHAN 10766 Price: 10.5 No. of discs: 1
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CHAN 10766 - Svendsen: Orchestral Works, Volume 3
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Available From: 18 March 2013
Svendsen: Orchestral Works, Volume 3

THORSEN / BERGEN PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA / JÄRVI

This last volume in the survey of orchestral music by the Norwegian composer Johan Svendsen takes us to the second half of the 1860s, when Svendsen was in his twenties, a recent graduate of the Leipzig Conservatory. Symphony No. 1 was dedicated to Carl F. Leche, the Swedish-Norwegian consul in Lübeck, who had helped Svendsen secure funding to attend that Conservatory. The orchestration is French in character, the sound world one full of contrasts. To islandske Melodier (Two Icelandic Melodies) is an arrangement for string orchestra of two tunes collected during a trip to Iceland and the Faroe Islands in 1867. Svendsen thought the Violin Concerto, which followed in 1870, to be something new and original, its focus resting on the contrast in timbre between the soloist and the orchestra, and on symphonic development, rather than on virtuosic display – though the solo part is highly active and always challenging. The work is thought to be modelled, at least in part, on Berlioz’s Harold en Italie. The Norwegian violinist Marianne Thorsen is the expert soloist. Norsk Kunstnerkarneval (Norwegian Artists’ Carnival) was composed for the annual carnival of the Artists’ Association in Christiania, the town (now Oslo) in which Svendsen had settled with his family. The work has two main themes: a Norwegian folk dance and an Italian popular melody (made especially famous in an arrangement by Donizetti). At the work’s climax Svendsen joins these two melodies in counterpoint – though they are in different metres. It remains one of Svendsen’s most popular works. The Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra is conducted by Neeme Järvi

Reviews

"... all of the works on this third volume of his orchestral output are pleasant and attractive, and in the capable hands of Neeme Järvi, the Bergen Philharmonic, violinist Marianne Thorsen, and Chandos’s engineers, beautifully played and recorded: ..."
Jerry Dubins  - Fanfare - September/October 2013

                         **** (Good)
Marcel Louis - Pizzicato magazine - September 2013

"...Clearly the intention of the Chandos series is to split the symphonies and to offer mixed programming as exemplified by this latest release. If that introduces more people to the Violin Concerto I’ll go with that. The sonics of these Bergen performances are about as good as Svendsen has yet received and the performances are fine. Just don’t forget Laursen in the Concerto."
 
Jonathan Woolf - MusicWeb-International.com - 4 July 2013

“...Järvi and his Bergen players sound most happy together, playing with fluency suggestive of more joint live performances that they could possibly have had. The engineering supports them at every turn.”
 
Mike Ashman – Gramophone magazine – July 2013

 “...Volume 3 shares the strengths of its predecessors – specifically, a generous supply of charm and fine craftsmanship in the works themselves, and capable, sensitive performances from maestro Järvi, his orchestras and his soloists...”

 
Raymond S Tuttle – International Record Review – April 2013

 

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