Beethoven: Symphony No. 3; Wagner: Siegfried's Rhine Journey

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
Once, the release of a live "Eroica" with Georg Solti conducting the London Symphony Orchestra coupled with live recordings of excerpts from "Götterdämmerung" and "Tristan und Isolde" from the same conductor leading the Covent Garden Orchestra with soprano Birgit Nilsson would have been considered a significant addition to an important conductor's discography. But since his death 1997, Solti's stock has fallen precipitously and his reputation has gone into almost complete eclipse. This is, needless to say, unfair. Solti turned in some of most exciting and most influential recordings of the second half of the twentieth century -- among them, his complete Beethoven cycle ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
Once, the release of a live "Eroica" with Georg Solti conducting the London Symphony Orchestra coupled with live recordings of excerpts from "Götterdämmerung" and "Tristan und Isolde" from the same conductor leading the Covent Garden Orchestra with soprano Birgit Nilsson would have been considered a significant addition to an important conductor's discography. But since his death 1997, Solti's stock has fallen precipitously and his reputation has gone into almost complete eclipse. This is, needless to say, unfair. Solti turned in some of most exciting and most influential recordings of the second half of the twentieth century -- among them, his complete Beethoven cycle with the Chicago Symphony and his complete "Ring" cycle with the Wiener Philharmoniker -- and to forget him is to forget some of the most thrilling performances ever recorded. So for those who remember and for those who don't, here are magnificent reminders of exactly how great a conductor Solti was in his prime. His 1968 "Eroica" is fast, tough, strong, and, yes, extremely exciting. The LSO, then Solti's orchestra, responds with palpable enthusiasm to his leadership and its playing has an edge-of-the-seat quality that the conductor and the music demand. And his 1963 "Götterdämmerung" and "Tristan" excerpts are even better. Though the Covent Garden Orchestra isn't technically in the same class as either the LSO or the Wiener Philharmoniker, it plays superbly for Solti in "Siegfried's Rhine Journey" from "Götterdämmerung" and in the Prelude to Act 1 of "Tristan." Best of all is Nilsson and Solti's ecstatic account of the "Love-Death" from "Tristan." Nilsson's clarion voice is in top form, nailing her high notes with ease and soaring over the orchestra with unstoppable energy. And Solti and the Covent Garden musicians are right there with her, moving from wonder to awe to starry-eyed transcendence with her. Though the live sound here is distant and a bit dull, the quality of the performances makes these sonic shortcomings easy to forgive.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/16/2008
  • Label: Bbc Legends
  • UPC: 684911423921
  • Catalog Number: 4239
  • Sales rank: 164,218

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–4 Symphony No. 3 in E flat major ("Eroica"), Op. 55 - Ludwig van Beethoven & London Symphony Orchestra (52:21)
    Composed byLudwig van Beethoven
    Conducted byGeorg Solti
    Performed byLondon Symphony Orchestra, Georg Solti
    1. 1 Allegro con brio
    2. 2 Marcia funebre: Adagio assai
    3. 3 Scherzo: Allegro vivace
    4. 4 Finale: Allegro molto
  2. 5 Die Götterdämmerung (Twilight of the Gods), opera, WWV 86d: Siegfried's Rhine Journey - Richard Wagner & Birgit Nilsson (8:08)
    Composed byRichard Wagner
    Conducted byGeorg Solti
    Performed byBirgit Nilsson, Royal Opera House Orchestra Covent Garden, Georg Solti
  3. 6 Tristan und Isolde, opera, WWV 90: Act 1. Prelude - Richard Wagner & Birgit Nilsson (11:34)
    Composed byRichard Wagner
    Conducted byGeorg Solti
    Performed byBirgit Nilsson, Royal Opera House Orchestra Covent Garden, Georg Solti
  4. 7 Tristan und Isolde, opera, WWV 90: Act 3. Death of Isolde - Richard Wagner & Birgit Nilsson (7:08)
    Composed byRichard Wagner
    Conducted byGeorg Solti
    Performed byBirgit Nilsson, Royal Opera House Orchestra Covent Garden, Georg Solti
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Birgit Nilsson Primary Artist
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