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An Exhilarating Freshness

Recordings of the
Beethoven Symphonies -

'... an outstanding overall impression.'

Ludwig van Beethoven: Die Sinfonien. © 2002-2007 hrmk

It must now be true that the market is no longer in need of any new Beethoven symphony cycles unless both conductor and orchestra have something rather more fresh and yet not too outrageously unconventional to offer. In fact it could be re-creatively exciting now to open these works up to more eccentricity in performance, the sort of imaginative reworking that would enthuse a composer rather than a musicologist -- but who would dare trespass through such hallowed texts?

Hugh Wolff seems to make some judicious steps toward an exhilarating freshness. He adds his lively readings to some excellent period recordings that take on board recent careful editorial researches, and his seating of the Frankfurt orchestra, its natural horns and trumpets, small timpani and string playing with limited vibrato all add to an outstanding overall impression.

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Copyright © 24 June 2008 Patric Standford, Wakefield UK


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