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By the time of this BBC Henry Wood Proms performance in August 1967, Barbirolli’s grasp of the work was complete.
The result is a performance of electrifying insight and interpretative mastery, the New Philharmonia Orchestra at its very best.
The EMI recording of the work by this conductor and orchestra (made within a few days of this live performance) is not as consistently impressive.
On the original long-playing discs the record company changed the middle movement order to that of Ratz’s edition. Barbirolli was understandably disappointed by this, but not angry. For the latest CD edition, EMI have placed the middle movements in the correct Andante-Scherzo order.
What cannot be denied, however, is that this live performance is demonstrably superior in several respects to the studio version, living proof of Barbirolli’s greatness, his intensity and sensitivity, as a Mahler interpreter.
Symphony NO.6 in A minor: 1.Allegro energico, ma non troppo. Heftig, aber markig
Symphony NO.6 in A minor: 2.Andante moderato
Symphony NO.6 in A minor: 3.Scherzo: Wuchtig
Symphony NO.6 in A minor: 4.Finale. Sostenuto - Allegro moderato
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