Münchner Philharmoniker

Orchestra

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Mahler: Symphony No. 2 'Resurrection'

Mahler: Symphony No. 2 'Resurrection'


The first releases from the Munich Philharmonic’s own recording label feature sensational performances of works by two composers with whom the orchestra is closely associated: Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4.

The recording of Mahler’s Second Symphony was made during the opening concerts of Valery Gergiev’s first season as Music Director of the Munich Philharmonic. Since first coming to prominence after winning the Karajan Conducting Competition at the age of 24, Gergiev has established himself as one of the world’s great conductors and communicators on the value and role of music in today’s society.

The Munich Philharmonic had an especially close relationship with Gustav Mahler and has long been associated with his music. Mahler conducted the Munich Philharmonic at the world premieres of his very own Fourth and Eighth Symphonies as well as Das Lied von der Erde.

Although he rarely offered direct insight into any specific meaning behind his music, Mahler’s symphonies are characterised by the sense of a composer openly expressing his emotions regarding the great struggle of “life”. His epic second symphony, often referred to as The Resurrection Symphony, culminates in a spectacular final movement, complete with chorus, as the music passes though darkness to a place of redemption and elation.

For this astonishing recording, Gergiev and the Munich Philharmonic are joined by soprano Anne Schwanewilms and mezzo-soprano Olga Borodina, as well as the magnificent Munich Philharmonic Choir.

Valery Gergiev has held many of the top roles in the world of classical music and is one of the most influential conductors of our time. He is General and Artistic Director of the Mariinsky Theatre in St Petersburg, where is has lead a renaissance of this historic institution, firmly re-establishing it as one of the world’s leading opera and ballet companies. From 2006 to 2015 he was Principal Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra. He has also enjoyed positions and close relationships with the Metropolitan Opera, Vienna Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Pacific Music Festival and World Orchestra for Peace, whose founder Sir Georg Solti nominated him as his successor as Music Director. However, Gergiev’s role with the Munich Philharmonic is his first position with a German orchestra.

Gergiev has a peerless reputation in Russian and French repertoire. He has received acclaim around the world, and recordings with Philips, LSO Live and Mariinsky have won countless awards, especially in the music of Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich, Prokofiev, Berlioz and Debussy. However, over recent decades he has become widely regarded as one of the greatest and most exciting conductors of German repertoire in the world today, garnering adulation, especially for his interpretations of Wagner, Strauss, Mahler and Bruckner – music that is at the very heart of the Munich Philharmonic’s repertoire.

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Münchner Philharmoniker - 9305211204

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Bruckner: Symphony No. 4 in Eb Major 'Romantic'

Bruckner: Symphony No. 4 in Eb Major 'Romantic'


The first releases from the Munich Philharmonic’s own recording label feature sensational performances of works by two composers with whom the orchestra is synonymous: Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4.

Valery Gergiev and the Munich Philharmonic share an exceptionally close association with the music of Anton Bruckner. The orchestra has made more recordings of Bruckner than any other composer and more recordings of his fourth symphony than any other symphony.

The Fourth Symphony is the only one of his symphonies to which Anton Bruckner assigned a title. By the use of the term Romantic, he was a referring to a medieval world, similar to the settings of many of Wagner’s operas and depicting nature, forests, and birdsong with chivalrous knights on horseback.

The symphony was recorded during performances marking the inauguration of Valery Gergiev as the orchestra’s new Music Director. Since first coming to prominence after winning the Karajan Conducting Competition at the age of 24, Gergiev has established himself as one of the world’s great conductors and communicators on the value and role of music in today’s society.

Valery Gergiev has held many of the top roles in the world of classical music and is one of the most influential conductors of our time. He is General and Artistic Director of the Mariinsky Theatre in St Petersburg, where is has lead a renaissance of this historic institution, firmly re-establishing it as one of the world’s leading opera and ballet companies. From 2006 to 2015 he was Principal Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra. He has also enjoyed positions and close relationships with the Metropolitan Opera, Vienna Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Pacific Music Festival and World Orchestra for Peace, whose founder Sir Georg Solti nominated him as his successor as Music Director. However, Gergiev’s role with the Munich Philharmonic is his first position with a German orchestra.

Gergiev has a peerless reputation in Russian and French repertoire. He has received acclaim around the world, and recordings with Philips, LSO Live and Mariinsky have won countless awards, especially in the music of Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich, Prokofiev, Berlioz and Debussy. However, over recent decades he has become widely regarded as one of the greatest and most exciting conductors of German repertoire in the world today, garnering adulation, especially for his interpretations of Wagner, Strauss, Mahler and Bruckner – music that is at the very heart of the Munich Philharmonic’s repertoire.

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Münchner Philharmoniker - 9305211208

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Friedrich Gulda: Concerto for Cello and Wind Orchestra

Friedrich Gulda: Concerto for Cello and Wind Orchestra

Concerts from the Münchner Klaviersommer 1988


Gulda:

Concerto for cello and windband

Concerto for Myself


For Friedrich Gulda pianists who didn’t also compose were not to be considered real musicians. It is no wonder therefore that he, as an exceptional pianist, is able to delight his audience with two of his own compositions at the Münchner Klaviersommer 1988. Presented here are the world premiere of Gulda’s Concerto for Myself as well as his Concerto for Cello and Wind Orchestra, which was tailor-made for the famous cellist Heinrich Schiff.

Gulda, born 1930 in Vienna, is regarded as one of the cross-over pioneers of his time – after a breathtaking classical career he turned towards Jazz, and later even to electronic music. His compositions as well as his live performances are legendary – they are the refreshing credentials of an unconventional genius. Gulda fans will be thrilled with this release!

“His nonconformity and his classical piano-playing, which is clear and far from any kind of false romanticism, belong inseparably together.” Der Spiegel

Sound Format: PCM Stereo

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Arthaus Musik - 101675

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 7 & 8

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 7 & 8


Beethoven:

Symphony No. 7 in A major, Op. 92

Symphony No. 8 in F major, Op. 93


Warner Classics Red Line - 2322842

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Sol Gabetta plays Shostakovich and Rachmaninov

Sol Gabetta plays Shostakovich and Rachmaninov


Rachmaninov:

Cello Sonata in G minor, Op. 19

Olga Kern (piano)

Shostakovich:

Cello Concerto No. 1 in E flat major, Op. 107

Munchner Philharmoniker, Lorin Maazel


Sol Gabetta (cello)

Sony - 88725435752

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 3

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1 & 3


Beethoven:

Symphony No. 1 in C major, Op. 21

Symphony No. 3 in E flat major, Op. 55 'Eroica'


Warner Classics Red Line - 6365552

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 5 & 6

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 5 & 6


Beethoven:

Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67

Symphony No. 6 in F major, Op. 68 'Pastoral'


Major documents from Rudolf Kempe's later years at the head of the Munich Philharmonic. Beethoven's Fifth, that masterpiece of emotional tension, and his Sixth, all vivid depiction of nature, are both readings of maturity and perfection.

Warner Classics Red Line - 6023032

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R. Strauss: Lieder

R. Strauss: Lieder


Strauss, R:

Ich wollt ein Sträusslein binden, Op. 68 No. 2

Waldseligkeit, Op. 49 No. 1

Das Bächlein, Op. 88 No. 1

Winterweihe, Op. 48 No. 4

Morgen, Op. 27 No. 4

Allerseelen, Op. 10 No. 8

Cäcilie, Op. 27 No. 2

Amor, Op. 68 No. 5

Säusle, Liebe Myrte, Op. 68 No. 3

Freundliche Vision, Op. 48 No. 1

Ständchen, Op. 17 No. 2

Traum durch die Dämmerung, Op. 29 No. 1

Wiegenlied, Op. 41 No. 1

Meinem Kinde, Op. 37 No. 3

Muttertändelei, Op. 43 No. 2

Zueignung, Op. 10 No. 1

Das Rosenband, Op. 36 No. 1

Heimkehr, Op. 15 No. 5

Als mir dein Lied erklang, Op. 68 No. 4

Des Dichters Abendgang, Op. 47 No. 2

An die Nacht, Op. 68 No. 1

Lied der Frauen, Op. 68


“This is a performance of transcendent art” proclaimed Opera News on hearing Diana Damrau’s interpretation of Strauss’ Zerbinetta on her last Virgin Classics album, ‘Coloraturas’. In this collection of Strauss songs, recorded in the composer’s hometown, she is joined by the Munich Philharmonic and Christian Thielemann, the leading German conductor of his generation.

Soprano Diana Damrau, described by The Sunday Times as “the most dazzling star to have emerged from Germany in recent years” was born in Bavaria. The region’s capital, Munich, was the birthplace of Richard Strauss, and in March 2009 a programme of the composer’s songs was presented at the city’s Gasteig Philharmonie, with Damrau accompanied by the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra under its Chief Conductor, Christian Thielemann.

“Strauss loved female voices,” says Damrau, “and he explores some extreme possibilities in these many-layered songs, each with its different point of view. Sensitivity to the words is vital to telling the story of each song, to capturing the rapid changes of mood and all the colours.”

Strauss’ operatic roles for lyric-coloratura soprano, notably Zerbinetta (Ariadne auf Naxos), Aithra (Die Aegyptische Helena) and Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier) have played an important role in Damrau’s career. As Opera News wrote when reviewing her last Virgin Classics album, ‘Coloraturas’: “Zerbinetta … is one of Damrau's calling cards, having served for her stupendous Met debut in 2005. ‘Grossmächtige Prinzessin’ provides every opportunity to dazzle the listener, with stratospheric high notes, staccatos, roulades and trills, as Zerbinetta cajoles, berates and mocks the gloomy Ariadne. Every note and word reveals Damrau's artistry, the result of constantly questioning and probing into the composer's intentions; while the soprano has a knack for concealing or highlighting technical difficulties at will, here just enough self-absorbed delight breaks to the surface that we are as captivated by Zerbinetta's own theatrical skills as by Damrau's vocal athleticism. Damrau/Zerbinetta even seems to be commanding the orchestra's responses to her whimsical, moody outbursts. This is a performance of transcendent art.”

On the new CD, favourites such as ‘Ständchen’, ‘Wiegenlied’, ‘Allerseelen’, ‘Cäcilie’ and ‘Zueignung’ feature alongside more rarely heard numbers, and six tracks recorded under studio conditions now complement the sixteen songs captured live.

“Always there is delicacy and an absolute respect for the silky legato that Strauss demands from his soloist. Damrau finds drama in these songs too...the songs that demand diamond-bright coloratura, runs and trills to affright a Zerbinetta hold no terrors...Thielemann has a very special affinity with singers. He also coaxes some fine playing from the Munich orchestra.” International Record Review, January 2011

“What wins this disc the five stars are the facts that Damrau, singing in her native German, is poised ideally between dreamy haze and Schwarzkopfian fussiness...her hallowed pianissimos allow the exquisite detail Thielemann draws from his Munich players to shine...the ineffable balance between voice and orchestra, subtly assisted by the engineering, is a treat throughout.” BBC Music Magazine, February 2011 *****

“Secure in technique, gifted in projecting drama and emotion, Damrau is a peach of a singer...The haunting music; the lyrical voice; the orchestra’s dappled array, with woodwinds curling like climbing roses and violins wafting with fragrant perfume: poesie indeed, in small doses.” The Times, 28th January 2011 ****

“With a creamy-voiced soprano such as Renée Fleming, say, the results could be an excess of musical cholesterol, but Damrau’s diamantine timbre brings a welcome edge to the mix...She’s the leading Strauss soprano of the day, and her singing here shows exactly why.” Sunday Times, 30th January 2011 ****

“her voice is not ideally voluptuous for Strauss, but she makes up for it by her exceptional musicality, investing every song with meaning, and her clarity of diction. The Munich Philharmonic under Christian Thielemann are splendid partners on a CD that must now be regarded as the best modern introduction to Strauss's songs” Mail on Sunday, 30th January 2011 ****

“Her singing is consistently accurate and expressive. I particularly liked her 'Traum durch die Dämmerung', which caught the atmosphere of a secret tryst perfectly...She joins the group of younger sopranos such as Angelika Kirchschlager and Anne Schwanewilms among the leading lyric Strauss singers of the day.” Sunday Telegraph, 30th January 2011 ****

“she is not merely a fair-weather soprano. Darker shades, more serious tones lie within her expressive scope than one might at first suppose...Familiar songs such as "Ständchen" gain new life with a smiling intimacy of approach in the first verse and an enriched suggestiveness as dusk falls in the third.” Gramophone Magazine, March 2011

“there are performances of such favourites as Morgen, Allerseelen and Wiegenlied, where her hovering, silvery soprano is heard to perfection...Not all the orchestrations are by Strauss: Christian Thielemann and the Munich Philharmonic really bring home just how marvellous his own instrumentation sounds when placed beside that of some of the other composers” The Guardian, 10th February 2011 ****

“When did a German coloratura soprano last handle Richard Strauss’s orchestral songs with such grace and aplomb?...Damrau’s artistry is a combination of vocal noblesse, emotional warmth and instinctive intelligence.” Financial Times, 19th February 2011 ****

“This gloriously romantic collection of orchestral settings of Strauss’s songs... shows [Damrau] at her stunning best. Outstanding tracks include Amor, with its airy, witty coloratura, and a magically slow yet gloriously alive Wiegenlied. The accompaniments, as might be expected from Thielemann’s baton, are quite superb.” The Telegraph, 25th February 2011 *****

“These songs demand a variety of vocal weights and colours, and Damrau seems to have it all...Thielemann and the Munich Phil revel in the rich orchestral colours and can be as light as air when required...Damrau brings effortless technique, beautiful tone and unfailing musical instinct to these songs.” Classic FM Magazine, April 2011 *****

“She has a formidable technique and hits the high notes with pinpoint accuracy. Her dynamic range is equally impressive and in particular her quiet pianissimos allow Strauss’s wonderful orchestration to make telling contributions. She also has a richness and warmth to her tone which gives these songs the necessary sensual and emotional effect.” Chris O'Reilly, Presto Classical, 17th January 2011

Presto Disc of the Week

17th January 2011

GGramophone Awards 2011

Shortlisted - Solo Vocal

BBC Music Magazine

Choral & Song Choice - February 2011

Erato - 6286640

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Strauss, R: Elektra

Strauss, R: Elektra

Recorded live at Festspielhaus Baden-Baden 29 Jan, 1 & 4 Feb 2010


Linda Watson (Elektra), Jane Henschel (Klytämnestra), Manuela Uhl (Chrysothemis), René Kollo (Aegisth), Albert Dohmen (Orest), Andreas Hörl (Orest’s tutor), Jörg Schneider (A young servant), Carsten Sabrowski (An old servant) & Irmgard Vilsmaier (An overseer)

Vienna Philharmonic Choir & Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, Christian Thielemann (conductor) & Herbert Wernicke (stage director)

Conducted by Christian Thielemann, this performance was the sensation of the 2010 Baden-Baden Festival. A one-act masterpiece inspired by Greek mythology, it is a dense, jagged cry for justice and vengeance. With its powerfully expressive chords, spooky waltz rhythms and mad dance of triumph, it shakes the audience to the core. Herbert Wernicke’s legendary production for the Bayerische Staatsoper stands out for its clear lines, classical structural elements and striking colour contrasts. Linda Watson, one of the great Wagnerian sopranos of today, superbly masters her role debut as Elektra, one of opera’s most demanding roles.

Extra features: Cast gallery

Running time 1 hour 40 mins Region code All regions

Video codec AVC/MPEG-4

Disc size BD50

Picture format 1080i High Definition / 16:9

Sound format 2.0 LPCM + 5.1(5.0) DTS digital surround

Menu language EN

Subtitles: EN/FR/DE/ES

“Perhaps taking its cue from Electra's repeated cry of 'Allein!' ('Alone!') the production presents all its characters as both alone and alienated from one another...Possibly in reaction to the statuesque starkness of the staging, Thielemann seems to want to tone down the score's mythic violence and tease out its moments of human (essentially womanly) warmth.” BBC Music Magazine, April 2011 ***

“Watson has physical stature, an expressive face...the necessary intelligence and a suitable instrument, which is saying a great deal in this most formidable of roles...[Henschel] makes a capital Klytämnestra, lavishing lovelier tone on the role than it usually receives...Never do Christian Thielemann and the Munich Philharmonic overwhelm the singers: they make chamber music, in effect, with no bombast whatever” International Record Review, March 2011

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Opus Arte - OABD7082D

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Strauss, R: Der Rosenkavalier

Strauss, R: Der Rosenkavalier


Renée Fleming (Marschallin), Franz Hawlata (Baron Ochs), Sophie Koch (Octavian), Diana Damrau (Sophie), Jonas Kaufmann (The Italian Tenor), Franz Grundheber (Faninal), Jane Henschel (Annina)

Munchner Philharmoniker, Christian Thielemann

Renée Fleming performs in a wonderful version of Der Rosenkavalier with an all star cast. Sophie Koch, Diana Damrau, Franz Hawlata, Jonas Kaufmann perform in this Decca release with the Munchner Philharmoniker and Christian Thielemann conducting.

For this filming, Baden-Baden Festival Opera is re-staging the celebrated Herbert Wernicke production, already seen in Salzburg (1995) and Paris (1998) – a stylish pastiche of vast mirrors, Viennese Baroque decorations, Hollywood-esque staircases and early 20th century evening wear.

“we have Christian Thielemann's immaculately bittersweet conducting and Renée Fleming's Marschallin, sung and acted with superb conviction...Watch out, meanwhile, for Jonas Kaufmann's brief, but sensational appearance as the Italian Tenor.” The Guardian, 11th December 2009 ****

“[Fleming] speaks volumes with those expressive eyes and floats the trio's opening phrase to perfection...Sophie Koch produces rich, impassioned sounds and makes a convincing boy...Kaufmann [is] handsome and oddly impressive as the Italian tenor” BBC Music Magazine, August 2010 **

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Decca - 0743343

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