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Spohr: Symphonies no 1 & 2, etc / Shelley, et al

Album Summary

>Spohr, Louis : Grand Concert Overture in F major, WoO 1
>Spohr, Louis : Symphony no 1 in E flat major, Op. 20
>Spohr, Louis : Symphony no 2 in D minor, Op. 49
Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Spohr's symphonies, for which he was highly celebrated, were staples of the concert platform, alongside those of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven. Hyperion is delighted to present this disc of Symphonies Nos. 1 and 2 - with Nos. 4 and 5 to follow next year. The indefatigable Howard Shelley leads the Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana in stylish, committed performances and includes a first recording of the 'Grand Concert Overture in F major' - an enchanting and utterly unfamiliar work.

'Howard Shelley and his skilled orchestra are attentive to the music's lyrical charm and colourful wind scoring' (Daily Telegraph)

'The playing is generous in energy and rhythmic impetus, not to mention elegant, and the lines are beautifully wrought. The performances make as good a case for Spohr's music as do the annotations' (Fanfare, USA)

'The Grand Concert Overture (1819) here receives its first recording. It is sonorous, spirited and beguiling ... an enjoyable entrée into the symphonies recorded here as well as signalling the fine performances and sound to be found on this Hyperion release. These works show both 'muscle' and lyricism ... Spohr's construction and scoring is of a high order; the music trips lightly and curvaceously. The Second Symphony (1820) begins in dramatic fashion, the 'introduction' proving to be integral to the movement as a whole, its unhurried demeanour embracing dignity and lightness. The movements that follow once again contain ideas that make immediate attraction - a warm-toned Larghetto, a scurrying scherzo and a mercurial finale ... There are ten symphonies by Spohr. Maybe Hyperion intends to record the cyclethe label has previously championed Spohr's chamber music)? It would be welcome ... His music is genuinely enjoyable and not without novelty and Howard Shelley and this fine orchestra certainly have its measure' (ClassicalSource.com)

'The first two symphonies ... are well worth an airing, and their finales in particular have a great deal of life ... Howard Shelley's direction is highly effective' (Manchester Evening News)

'Tout en souplesse, la lecture de Shelley supplante forcément celle d'Alfred Walter, par ses tempos plus amples et plus contrastés. En espérant que d'autres chefs donneront bientôt à ces musiques plus des rythmes et de relief, on trouvera ici une honnête version d'attente donc, accompagnée d'un superbe Caspar David Friedrich en couverture et d'un excellent texte de présentation' (Diapason)



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Works Details

>Spohr, Louis : Grand Concert Overture in F major, WoO 1
  • Conductor: Howard Shelley
  • Ensemble: Swiss Italian Orchestra
  • Notes: Auditorio Stelio Molo, Lugano, Switzerland (09/11/2006-09/15/2006)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1819

>Spohr, Louis : Symphony no 1 in E flat major, Op. 20
  • Conductor: Howard Shelley
  • Ensemble: Swiss Italian Orchestra
  • Notes: Auditorio Stelio Molo, Lugano, Switzerland (09/11/2006-09/15/2006)
  • Running Time: 35 min. 54 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1811

>Spohr, Louis : Symphony no 2 in D minor, Op. 49
  • Conductor: Howard Shelley
  • Ensemble: Swiss Italian Orchestra
  • Notes: Auditorio Stelio Molo, Lugano, Switzerland (09/11/2006-09/15/2006)
  • Running Time: 30 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1820