Sibelius: Symphonies Nos. 4, 5, 6 & 7, etc.

Sibelius: Symphonies Nos. 4, 5, 6 & 7, etc.


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Any great musical work is open to interpretation. Take Sibelius's symphonies, for example. Most conductors try to elicit a lean, rough-hewn sound from the orchestra to evoke the music's rugged, frosty Scandinavian atmosphere. Not so Herbert von Karajan. In fact, when this recording of the Fourth -- the sparsest of Sibelius's seven symphonies -- was first released in 1965, it was attacked by critics for its plush sonorities. But Karajan uses orchestral depth of sound to emphasize the music's darkness, creating a shattering performance of enormous concentration and fervor. It's not only true to Sibelius's musical vision, but it also gives us a fresh and invaluable insight into this mysterious masterpiece. No wonder most critics have changed their tune. The other recordings in this newly remastered set are also worth savoring. Rarely has a conductor steered the gradually accelerating tempo in the first movement of the Fifth with such assurance and finesse as Karajan does here. And if his Seventh sometimes lacks impetus, this luminous, unaffected performance of the Sixth is close to perfection.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/15/1999
Label: Deutsche Grammophon
UPC: 0028945774824
catalogNumber: 457748
Rank: 140993


  1. Symphony No. 4 in A minor, Op. 63
  2. The Swan of Tuonela, tone poem for orchestra (Lemminkäinen Suite No. 3), Op. 22/3
  3. Symphony No. 5 in E flat major, Op. 82
  4. Symphony No. 6 in D minor, Op. 104
  5. Symphony No. 7 in C major, Op. 105
  6. Tapiola, tone poem for orchestra, Op. 112

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