Notes & Reviews:
"All signs point to Nézet-Séguin's being a major Bruckner conductor" Philadelphia Enquirer. Following the critically acclaimed recordings of Bruckner's last 3 symphonies, Maestro Nézet-Séguin & l'Orchestre Métropolitain continue the series with Bruckner's most popular work, Symphony No. 4, performing the 1936 Haas Edition. Nézet-Séguin is one of the most sought after young conductors in the world, serving as Artistic Director & Principal Conductor of the Orchestre Métropolitain of Montreal , Music Director of Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra, and in September '12 will join the Philadelphia Orchestra as Music Director.
Nezet-Seguin shies away from weighty sound blocks or dense textures; rather, he inflects the musical line according to its expressive place in the overall scheme of things and isn't afraid to dip the tempo at crucial corners, so that we can better appreciate the view...The Scherzo is full of energy, though again it's most lyrical aspects come off best...The Andante is equally successful.
BBC Music Magazine, May 2012 ****
Although Yannick Nezet-Seguin stresses Romantic warmth of sonority and richness of mood, it's remarkable how textured the orchestral sound is. We don't just hear the leading melodic lines, but also the echoes, imitations and counter-melodies that often get pushed into the background. It's refreshing to hear Bruckner's orchestral writing brought to life on so many levels, captured faithfully by the recording.
Recording information: Église Saint-Ferdinand, Laval, Québec, Canada (04/2011).
Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Orchestre Metropolitain (Montreal) since March 2000, Yannick Nezet-Seguin is among the world's most sought-after young conductors. His personal approach to music, his respect towards the musicians and the public, his loyalty, his generosity, and his charismatic personality have earned everyone's respect. In June 2010, he became Music Director Designate of the prestigious Philadelphia Orchestra, and will take up this position in September 2012.
This new CD by Nezet-Seguin with the Orchestre Metropolitain performs the Haas 1936 edition, and the competition is fierce; other conductors offering this version include Boehm, Celibidache, Karajan, Klemperer, Tintner, Walter, and Wand. What's a Bruckner-lover to do?
The performance seems splendid, except in the Scherzo, which Nezet-Seguin takes too fast for my taste; in my opinion, this robs it of its dignity.
Recommended, if you're in the market for a new version of the Haas 1936 edition, although your personal choice of conductor may well decide the issue.
Submitted on 12/10/11 by Ted Wilks
Dozens of lesser conductors have essayed the Fourth. I've not heard them all, but of those known to me, this is one of the finest. The orchestra is small--60 players according to the booklet--though they must have employed additional strings for the recording sessions. In any event, this lends a welcome intimacy to the proceedings and precludes the histrionics of Furtwangler's overwrought Vienna Philharmonic. Conductor Nezet-Seguin fully understands that Bruckner's melodies are grounded in the songs of Schubert. Never have I heard a more lyrical or sweetly flowing performance of the score. Again and again the notes I took during my listening sessions read, "smooth, gentle... delicate, ethereal... soothing". Yet Nezet-Seguin never underplays or discounts the score's inherent drama. Climaxes are appropriately defiant and powerful. Moreover, they are marked by some extraordinarily heroic brass playing. Tempos are generally unhurried, as they should be in Bruckner. Nonetheless the Andante second movement proceeds quite smartly, and the conductor sets a very brisk pace for the hunting horns in the scherzo. Nezet-Seguin manages Bruckner's transitions (or lack thereof) seamlessly, and his interpretation has a dreamy quality that enhances the child-like innocence and wonder inherent in the music. Atma's recorded sound is wonderfully rich and creamy.
For skeptics and newcomers to Bruckner, this disc should serve as a splendid introduction to the composer's elusive idiom. Meanwhile seasoned collectors will appreciate the conductor's many insights and the heavenly playing of the Orchestre Metropolitain. According to the booklet, these forces have also recorded Bruckner's last three symphonies. Those discs are now at the very top of my want list.
Submitted on 02/12/12 by Tom Godell
Works DetailsBruckner, Anton : Symphony no 4 in E flat major, WAB 104 "Romantic"
- Conductor: Yannick Nézet-Séguin
- Ensemble: Orchestre Metropolitain
- Notes: Composition written: 1874-88.
- Running Time: 69 min. 25 sec.
- Period Time: Romantic
- Form: Orchestral
- Written: 1874-1888