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Saint-Saëns: Symphony no 3; Dukas / Levine, Berlin PO

Album Summary

>Saint-Saëns, Camille : Symphony no 3 in C minor, Op. 78 "Organ"
>Dukas, Paul : L'apprenti sorcier
Performer Conductor Ensemble
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Notes & Reviews:

BBC Music Magazine
If having the organ and orchestra recorded separately does not bother you, allow yourself to be seduced by James Levine and Simon Preston's sensual and at times theatrical reading.

Gramophone Classical Music Guide
Levine's account of Dukas' masterpiece is still the best in the catalogue. Levine chooses a fast basic tempo, but justifies his speed by the lightness of his touch and the clean articulation and rhythmic bounce of the Berlin Phil playing help considerably.

The climax is thrilling, but Levine reserves something for the moment when the sorcerer returns to quell the flood. In all, it provides a marvellous finish to an exhilarating listening experience. Levine's performance of Saint-Saëns' Third Symphony is also among the best available.

The balance between the orchestra and organ, here played powerfully by Simon Preston, is well judged and the overall acoustic very convincing.

Levine directs a grippingly individual reading, full of drama and with a consistently imaginative response to the score's detail. The organ entry in the finale is quite magnificent, the excitement of Preston thundering out the main theme physical in its impact. The music expands and blossoms magnificently, helped by the spectacular dynamic range of the recording.


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Works Details

>Saint-Saëns, Camille : Symphony no 3 in C minor, Op. 78 "Organ"
  • Performer: Simon Preston (Organ)
  • Conductor: James Levine
  • Running Time: 36 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1886

>Dukas, Paul : L'apprenti sorcier
  • Conductor: James Levine
  • Running Time: 10 min. 43 sec.
  • Period Time: Post Romantic
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1897