Tuesday 2 October 2018

Review: An Absorbing Schubert "Great" from Bavaria

Schubert: "Great" Symphony in C
BR Klassik

Here’s another live Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra recording that makes you wish you’d been there. Schubert’s 7th, 8th, 9th or just “Great” Symphony (depending how you count) is given a straight forward but absorbing performance, very well played, bar an uncharacteristic moment of confusion in the acceleration out of the first movement’s introduction. Mariss Jansons chooses quick tempi, and it’s a sign of his good judgment that the fast movements move swiftly by without feeling hurried along, though the Andante is a little harried. This “Great” is light and cheery where others are burdened by darker things; it’s more like a massive escalation of Haydn than a premonition of Bruckner. And if that all sounds like the point has been missed, it hasn’t. It’s just that they’ve found a different point in this big box of possibilities.

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