Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 "Choral"

June 12, 2007 | Format: MP3

$3.96
Also available in CD Format
Song Title
Time
Popularity  
30
1
16:23
30
2
11:43
30
3
15:29
30
4
25:22
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: June 17, 2007
  • Release Date: June 12, 2007
  • Label: BPO Live
  • Copyright: 2007 BPO Live
  • Total Length: 1:08:57
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B0010Z7UF2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #235,717 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

60 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Yi-Peng on May 30, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Once in a while, there comes a performance of Beethoven's mammoth symphonic swansong where the circumstances under which it was made allow the music to speak for itself with more emotion. This fine Bernstein recording is one such example. Recorded after the fall of the Berlin Wall, it allows the music to speak up for itself. In some ways, this performance resembles the classic Furtwangler-Bayereuth recording, from the interpretative details to the circumstances of its "occurence." Bernstein elicits some fine playing from the coalition orchestra, even despite flaccid ensemble at times and some idiyosyncratic conducting. In performances like these, he is able to generate a lot of spontaniety and electricity, and the DG engineers have risen to the challenge of producing fine and atmospheric recorded sound that is not always clear in detail.
Bernstein's first movement is slower in comparison to his earlier DG version in Vienna, and it harks back to Furtwangler. The movement is allowed to build up intenseley with a keen conveyance of a sense of struggle, and all the various strands of the argumentative thread woven together into a dramatic whole. Drama still remains in the second movement, which has rythmic spring and a forward-moving impetus that steers the music along. The trio has an Olympian feel to it, just like the sublime third movement, which is played with a hushed intensity at the beginning, until the temperature of the music picks up towards the end.
The fourth movement may have some coarse and rough points to it, which can be seen a little in the cello and double-bass recitative. When the Joy Theme is introduced, it is slower than we are used to hearing it. However, there are some even more striking details when the soloists enter.
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By David Mente on April 16, 2002
Format: Audio CD
If you already have multiple copies of this symphony and want something interesting and unusual, you should give this performance some consideration. This was a performance celebrating the fall of the Berlin Wall. There is a real sense of occassion about it. The Bavarian Radio Symphony is the "base" orchestra (a West German Orchestra at the time), members of orchestras from the US, England, France, East Germany and Russia also joined in. This does lead to some raggedness, I believe. Bernstein also substitutes the word Freiheit (freedom) for Freude (Joy) for this performance. I felt that actually worked well and was probably quite moving for those present. This is a late Bernstein performance and thus has extremely slow tempos compared to the norm for this piece. If you are looking for a first recording of this symphony, there are better places to start (Szell, Klemperer, Karajan, Giulini's budget recording). If you are looking for Bernstein doing the Ninth, his Vienna Philharmonic recording is a great performance, more mainstream than this one. However, if you are looking to explore some of the other possibilities that this piece of music presents, this is a great choice for you.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Mark Sethre on August 18, 2006
Format: Audio CD
For years, when I listened to the 9th, I would play the 1st and 2nd movements

and then skip to the finale. I enjoy crisp, energetic and powerful music and

the 9th has it in unsurpassed measure. And this rendition provides just that.

I haven't listened to all the great performances of the 9th, but I've listened

to quite a few, and this is my favorite. This is the version I compare all the

subsequent ones I've listened to. I've heard better 4th mvts., but this one is

very near to the best. The first two movts. are done competantly and do not

disappoint. If the skills of the orchestra and recording quality were to be the

same....the time alotted the conductor, that he has to rehearse a work with

his players, determines it's ultimate success. I believe that Bernstein had a

good amount of time to communicate his interpretation to this orchestra.

And Lord knows there was high motivation by all concerned in the project.

Bernstein's interpretation of Beethoven's 3rd movt., the adagio molto e

cantabile, is by far the finest I've ever experienced. The emotional

groundwork is laid and the peak and resolution are sublime.

I know I'm going to fight back the tears, if I'm allowed to

listen this 3rd movt without distraction. If you ever get the opportunity

to purchase the video tape of this concert, do by all means buy it.

Oddly, the audio recording, alone, does not contain the full emotional

impact of the performance. However the audio CD is a "must have".

But, the full effect of the live performance in the video tape with

both audio and visual is truly magnificant.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By dcreader VINE VOICE on July 3, 2000
Format: Audio CD
A thrilling, tense and ultimately trinumphant rendering of Beethoven's Ninth. Although some might object the the substitution of "freedom" for "joy", it is hardly noticeable, and, in fact, appropriate given its historical location - the Berlin Wall shortly after its collapse. Several of Beethoven's symphonies were composed with European political events in mind, and it was appropriate to play the slightly modified Ninth at this one. The ebulliance of the time is captured in the playing of Bavarian Radio Orchestra, chorus and soloists. It's an exciting performance that betrayed no sense of the slower tempos that marked some of Bernstein's later performances and recordings.
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