José Luis Bermúdez
, August 2015
MAHLER, G.: Symphonies Nos. 1 and 2 (P. Järvi) (Blu-ray, HD) 718104
MAHLER, G.: Symphonies Nos. 3 and 4 (P. Järvi) (Blu-ray, HD) 719204
MAHLER, G.: Symphonies Nos. 5 and 6 (P. Järvi) (Blu-ray, HD) 729404
MAHLER, G.: Symphonies Nos. 7 and 8 (P. Järvi) (Blu-ray, HD) 729604
MAHLER, G.: Symphony No. 9 / Symphony No. 10: I. Adagio (P. Järvi) (Blu-ray, HD) 729804
The Frankfurt Radio Symphony (more properly known as the HR-sinfonieorchester) has a long tradition of Mahler playing, going back to its first principal conductor Hans Rosbaud. There is no question in my mind, after listening to this cycle, that it is in the front rank of Mahler orchestras.
The orchestra has a rich string sound, complemented by wind and brass sections that play with great assurance and are temperamentally attuned to Mahler’s multiple moods and styles. Mahler makes heavy demands upon solo musicians and the principals respond extremely well. [Samuel Seidenberg’s] horn solo is outstanding in the scherzo of the Fifth. But the standard is very high throughout the whole cycle. Highlights include the deliberately clumsy frère Jacques played by the double bass in the third movement of the First; the solos from the trombone and posthorn in the first and third movements of the Third; the horn solo in the second Nachtmusik from the Seventh; and the solo viola in the second and third movements of the Ninth.
Mahler was a great orchestrator and one of the real strengths of Paavo Järvi’s conducting is his skill in bringing out the complex texture of Mahler’s orchestral sound and striking a balance between the different voices. The slow movements display this skill to best effect. The first and last movements of the Ninth and the Adagio of the Tenth are particularly memorable. © 2015 Classical Net Read complete review