Grieg: Peer Gynt Suites Nos. 1 & 2; Lyric Suite; Piano Concerto

Grieg: Peer Gynt Suites Nos. 1 & 2; Lyric Suite; Piano Concerto

by Margaret Fingerhut

CD

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Overview

Grieg: Peer Gynt Suites Nos. 1 & 2; Lyric Suite; Piano Concerto

Vernon Handley's 1986 and 1989 recordings of Grieg with the Ulster Orchestra were not particularly well regarded in their time. But then, most of Handley's recordings were not particularly well regarded in their time. But, then, their time was the early years of digital, the years when hard, glassy, and very loud sound was king. Even in Handley's best performances of the period -- one thinks immediately of his Vaughan Williams' "Sixth" and Elgar "Symphony No. 2" -- one had to listen through the sound to get to the performances beneath. But the sheer physical effort involved in listening through hard, glassy, and very loud sound made any victory Pyrrhic. In this splendidly remastered 24-bit recording, Handley and the Ulster's performances are granted clear, clean, and very, very loud sound. The clear and clean part only helps one hear how really beautiful Handley's performances were. What was once hard is now rich and full and what was once glassy is now brilliant and voluptuous. Handley's interpretations are old-school British with stiff-upper-lip-but-a-tear-in-the-eye performances; imagine a less emotional Barbirolli or an ever-so-slightly more emotional Boult. All of it is grand: the British have always revered Grieg's robust sentimentality and Handley and the Ulster proudly uphold the tradition.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/23/2004
Label: Chandos
UPC: 0095115117521
catalogNumber: 10175

Tracks

  1. Peer Gynt Suite for orchestra (or piano or piano, 4 hands) No. 1, Op. 46
  2. Peer Gynt Suite for orchestra (or piano or piano, 4 hands) No. 2, Op. 55
  3. Lyric Suite for orchestra (orchestration of Op. 54)
  4. Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16

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