Alfvén: Symphony No. 5; Andante religioso

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Blair Sanderson
Like most of his music, Hugo Alfv?n's "Symphony No. 5 in A minor, Op 54" 1942-1953 is only gradually becoming familiar outside Sweden, which is a shame since this inventive work compares reasonably well with other Scandinavian symphonies and deserves a much wider audience. Written in a lush, highly dramatic style, but suffused with a brooding character, perhaps reflecting the troubled period of its composition, the "Symphony No. 5" was based on themes derived from Alfv?n's ballet-pantomime "The Mountain King" 1923; of its four movements, the Lento -- Allegro non troppo is the most substantially worked out and is often played by itself. But a successful reception of this...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Blair Sanderson
Like most of his music, Hugo Alfvén's "Symphony No. 5 in A minor, Op 54" 1942-1953 is only gradually becoming familiar outside Sweden, which is a shame since this inventive work compares reasonably well with other Scandinavian symphonies and deserves a much wider audience. Written in a lush, highly dramatic style, but suffused with a brooding character, perhaps reflecting the troubled period of its composition, the "Symphony No. 5" was based on themes derived from Alfvén's ballet-pantomime "The Mountain King" 1923; of its four movements, the Lento -- Allegro non troppo is the most substantially worked out and is often played by itself. But a successful reception of this work in its entirety depends on the intensity and conviction of its performance, and this persuasive account by Niklas Willén and the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra makes a strong case for playing the symphony whole. The muscular argument of the first movement needs to be developed further, by turns softened with the poignant lyricism of the Andante, contrasted with the sinister Scherzo, and resolved at last with the triumphant Finale; it takes a fully committed orchestra to make this scheme work and not seem contrived. Fortunately, the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra plays as if it absolutely believes in Alfvén's late-Romanticism and gets to the music's heart, even if it is formulaic at times and a bit backward-looking for its day. Naxos provides extraordinary sound quality for this 2004 recording, with a wide dynamic range and distinctive details.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/27/2007
  • Label: Naxos
  • UPC: 747313261222
  • Catalog Number: 8557612
  • Sales rank: 312,217

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–4 Symphony No. 5 in A minor, Op. 54, R209 - Hugo Alfvén & Norrköping Symphony Orchestra (54:00)
    Composed byHugo Alfvén
    Conducted byNiklas Willen
    Performed byNorrköping Symphony Orchestra, Niklas Willen
    1. 1[Part 1]
    2. 2[Part 2]
    3. 3[Part 3]
    4. 4[Part 4]
  2. 5 Andante religioso - Hugo Alfvén & Norrköping Symphony Orchestra (3:42)
    Composed byHugo Alfvén
    Conducted byNiklas Willen
    Performed byNorrköping Symphony Orchestra, Niklas Willen
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Niklas Willen Primary Artist
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