Tchaikovsky’s early trio of symphonies have long lived in the shadow of the three that followed. Following his acclaimed Mariinsky DVD of the final three symphonies, which received Choc de l’annee in France, Valery Gergiev conducts outstanding performances of the earlier works with the LSO.
Tchaikovsky’s early symphonies are full of the rich expressive melodies, for which he had a natural talent, with influences of Russian nationalism and folk tunes, particularly in the ‘Little Russian’, No. 2. The choreographer George Balanchine exploited the dance-like nature of the Third Symphony by using it as the basis for the final part of his ballet masterpiece, 'Jewels'.
Throughout the Autumn Valery Gergiev will conduct the complete Brahms and Szymanowski cycles with the LSO in London, Edinburgh, Paris and Luxembourg. They also tour to the USA and Germany. Gergiev’s recent recordings on LSO Live include an acclaimed recording of Rachmaninov’s Symphonic Dances and Stravinsky’s Symphony in Three Movements. His award-winning Mahler cycle will be released as a 10-SACD box set in October.
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No 1
i. Allegro tranquillo
ii. Adagio cantabile ma non tanto
iii. Scherzo: Allegro scherzando giocoso
iv. Finale: Andante lugubre - Allegro maestoso
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No 2
i. Andante sostenuto - Allegro vivo
ii. Andantino marziale, quasi moderato
iii. Scherzo: Allegro molto vivace
iv. Finale: Moderato assai - Allegro vivo
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No 3
i. Introduzione e Allegro: Moderato assai
ii. Alla tedesca: Allegro moderato e semplice
iii. Andante elegiaco
iv. Scherzo: Allegro vivo
v. Finale: Allegro con fuoco
6th September 2012
“Gergiev can transform works that often seem problematic into something compelling and totally coherent. In this set, he does exactly that with the Third...which he not only reveals as a totally convincing reworking of traditional symphonic form...but links it dramatically with Tchaikovsky's operas... both [the First & Second] are full of wonderful touches, of sharply etched detail, vivid colours and tremendous focused energy.”
16th September 2012
“what lovely and characteristic things are to be found in them, how full of Tchaikovskian panache, melodic richness and rhythmic vitality they are, and how brightly they shine in these vivid performances”
The Arts Desk
30th September 2012
“This budget-price, immaculately recorded double album is a revelation; Valery Gergiev’s pin-sharp attention to detail and rhythmic zest making each work seem much bigger and bolder than usual, far more than sequences of balletic interludes...Essential listening.”
“Gergiev’s handling of dynamic is expert…the orchestra is at its best here”
“Gergiev's frequent use of striking contrasts of tempos between themes, or even dramatic pauses, as in the slow movement, often makes Tchaikovsky's First sound like a close relation to a Bruckner symphony. Yet, such is the affection with which Gergiev shapes this work that it never descends to bathos.”
Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.