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  • Goldmark: Symphony No. 2; Prometheus Bound,  Op. 38
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Goldmark: Symphony No. 2; Prometheus Bound, Op. 38


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Goldmark: Symphony No. 2
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Audio CD, September 19, 1995
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1. Der Gefesselte Prometheus Ov, Op.38
2. Sym No.2 in E, Op.35: First Movt: Allegro
3. Sym No.2 in E, Op.35: Second Movt: Andante
4. Sym No.2 in E, Op.35: Third Movt: Allegro Quasi Presto-Trio (Moderato)
5. Sym No.2 in E, Op.35: Fourth Movt: Andante Assai-Allegro Alla Breve
6. In Italien-Ov, Op.49

Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 19, 1995)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: ASV
  • ASIN: B0000030VT
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #261,623 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Melvyn M. Sobel on December 11, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Karl Goldmark (1830-1915) ditched his Symphony No. 1 after a poor Viennese reception in 1860, not writing his "Rustic Wedding Symphony" (which is really not a symphony at all, but more a "suite" of symphonic proportions) until 1877.

To these ears, his Symphony No. 2 is a rather low temperature work: it tries hard enough to raise steam--- with a sort of labored and obvious effort--- but musical ideas seem surprisingly sophomoric. Needless to say, the entire symphony is unmemorable and hardly gets above lukewarm. Not even the requisite Andante stands out as being interesting or charming.

Poor Karl... maybe you should have scrubbed this enterprise, too?

The overtures are fairly uninspired, as well, which, coupled as they are with the relatively mundane Symphony No. 2, makes this CD a musical dud.

Butt makes a valiant attempt, with smoke and mirrors, but fails to mine any new gold here, or hit the mark.

[Running time: 61:12]
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By G.D. TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 13, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Whereas Goldmark's somewhat clichéd but highly attractive Rustic Wedding Symphony is well represented on disc, his other extant attempt at a symphony is not. Goldmark had written a symphony earlier (no.1), but only the Scherzo was published. The Rustic Wedding Symphony was written between this first attempt and the second symphony given here, but was not numbered - probably because even Goldmark himself realized it is more of a suite than a genuine symphony. In any case, the second symphony dates from 1887 and is a very fine work if hardly a masterpiece. Stylistically there are traces of Mendelssohn and Brahms, but Goldmark possessed an individual and actually relatively identifiable compositional voice (though the identifiability is probably mostly due to certain trademark turns of the phrase and his delectable writing for woodwinds).

The first movement may lack any very memorable theme but it is full of spirit and momentum, and Goldmark makes good use of the themes he have - structurally this is a pretty convincing affair. The Andante is wistful and lyrical but not without a dramatic strain and the Scherzo is delightfully fey and Mendelssohnian - I think the symphony would be very well worth getting to know were it only for that movement alone. The finale is atmospheric, joyful and colorful, and is the movement that comes closest to the Rustic Wedding Symphony in character. All in all a fine if hardly world-shattering work.

As for the couplings, Prometheus Unbound has been recorded a couple of times. It is cast very much in the style of Liszt's symphonic poems and it contains some very strong themes. Structurally, it is loose, however, and the many fine things cannot quite make up for its slightly rambling character. In Italien is pure enjoyment, however.
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Format: Audio CD
Unfortunately this is the worst recording of Goldmark's 2nd symphony you can find. It's slow and plodding, a dreary run-thru, not helped by a muddy recording (same issues here as with the other recording of Goldmark by Butt). One can't help the feeling, the musicians didn't understand what Mr. Butt wanted to achieve. Having seen some videos of him conducting, he seems not to be a conductor who is easy to understand. And it shows in most of his discs I have heard.

Alternative recordings:
Only for the ouvertures - Karl Goldmark, Andras Korodi, Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra Hungaroton (far better inpretation + recording)
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