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Recorded: Town Hall, Bournemouth, 25 September 1962 (Reznicek), Winter Gardens, Bournemouth, 3 July 1967 (Tchaikovsky, Elgar)
This the fourth release on BBC Legends of the Rumanian conductor Constantin Silvestri (1913- 1969) who spent his last years as Music Director of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra raising it to an international level which it enjoys today. Silvestri recorded frequently for EMI with the Philharmonia, Vienna Philharmonic, Orchestre National in Paris, London Philharmonic and Paris Conservatoire.
The composer Emil von Reznicek was Silvestri's uncle (on his mother's side). This early and very high spirited performance with the BSO from 1962 of Reznicek's popular Donna Diana Overture confirms Silvestri's wonderful rapport with the orchestra.
Silvestri made his name on EMI with his exciting but sometimes controversial recordings of Tchaikovsky's Symphonies Nos. 4, 5 and 6. BBC Legends has issued his November 1966 broadcast of Tchaikovsky's Symphony No.2 'Little Russian' and now we have Symphony No.3 'Polish' from a July 1967 broadcast in warm and immediate sound.
Silvestri's EMI recording of Elgar's 'In the South' Overture remains a classic to this day. BBC Legends have added the composer's Symphony No.1 (from 1968) and the 'Cockaigne' Overture (from 1966) and now we have probably the most popular Elgar work written, the 'Enigma Variations' (from July 1967) in a performance of deep understanding with a touch of non traditionalist about it.
Emil Nikolaus von Reznicek: Donna Diana
Donna Diana: Overture
Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 3 in D major, Op. 29, "Polish"
I. Introduction and Allegro
II. Alla tedesca
III. Andante elegiaco
Edward Elgar: Variations on an Original Theme, Op. 36, "Enigma"
Variation 1: C. A. E. (The Composer's Wife): L'istesso tempo
Variation 2: H. D. S-P. (Hew David Steuart-Powell): Allegro
Variation 3: R. B. T. (Richard Baxter Townshend): Allegretto
Variation 4: W. M. B. (William Meath Baker): Allegro di molto
Variation 5: R. P. A. (Richard Penrose Arnold): Moderato
Variation 6: Ysobel (Isabel Fitton): Andantino
Variation 7: Troyte (Troyte Griffith): Presto
Variation 8: W. N. (Winifred Norbury): Allegretto
Variation 9: Nimrod (A. J. Jaeger): Adagio
Variation 10: Intermezzo: Dorabella (Dora Penny):
Variation 11: G. R. S. (George Robertson Sinclair): Allegro di molto
Variation 12: B. G. N. (Basil G. Nevinson): Andante
Variation 13: Romanza: *** (Lady Mary Lygon)
Variation 14: Finale: E. D. U. (The Composer): Allegro - Presto
3rd May 2009
“The account of Reznicek’s Donna Diana overture, in the town hall, fizzes with life and energy..., the Silvestri qualities of clarity, brilliance, precision and expressivity shine through. Both performances have great panache. Silvestri’s Elgar, full of vivid details, is unencumbered with tradition.”
5th May 2009
“The real fireworks, come with the Donna Diana Overture by Silvestri's uncle Emil von Reznicek - pure fluff, but played with a virtuosity that is staggering.”
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