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  • Jongen: Symphonie Concertante For Organ & Orchestra / Franck: Fantasie In A; Pastorale
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Jongen: Symphonie Concertante For Organ & Orchestra / Franck: Fantasie In A; Pastorale


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Audio CD, October 25, 1990
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$37.59 $5.18

Product Details

  • Performer: Michael Murray
  • Orchestra: San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Edo de Waart
  • Composer: Joseph Jongen, Cesar Franck
  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Telarc
  • ASIN: B000003CTA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #173,062 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. I. Allegro, Molto Moderato
2. II. Divertimento: Molto Vivo
3. III. Molto Lento: Lento, Misterioso
4. IV. Toccata (Moto Perpetuo): Allegro Moderato
5. Fantaisie In A
6. Pastorale

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 11 customer reviews
Buy this CD if you like classical music.
David M. Fox
This is one of the greatest organ compositions and is played by a great organist, Michael Murray, on the powerful Ruffatti organ in Davis Symphony Hall.
Jon Palmer
Nonetheless, both Franck pieces are great works from the French organ literature, and again masterfully played and wonderfully recorded.
James M. Fitzwilliam

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Robert Badger on May 27, 2004
Verified Purchase
Composing for orchestra and organ is not always easy. Hector Berlioz, one of the greatest masters of orchestration who ever lived once said that the orchestra is the emperor of music and the organ the pope of music. According to Berlioz, neither the twain shall meet.
Unlike Saint-Saens' Symphony No. 3, this work is more a concerto for the organ. The Saint-Saens work utilises the organ as a part of the larger orchestral ensemble.
Murray is a wonderful organist and a wonderful musician. He is attentive to the intentions of the composer. He is a master of registration and a true virtuoso. This is by far the best performance of Jongen's masterpiece that I've ever heard.
It is a pity that this great work isn't heard more often.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By James M. Fitzwilliam VINE VOICE on December 22, 2004
Just as an example of well-recorded organ sound in general, this is perhaps one of the best CDs you could find. As an example of organ WITH ORCHESTRA, this in my opinion is the finest recording available. Period. As an old commercial used to say, if you can find a better one, buy it! But buy this one too, you won't be disappointed.

Years ago in college, a friend of mine and I were listening to the Saint-Saens Organ Symphony one day, and he mentioned to me that there was a (sadly, largely-unknown) piece by one Joseph Jongen that actually made better use of the organ with the orchestra, and was ravishingly beautiful besides. I filed this info away in the back of my mind for several years, until I came upon this CD -- having been a fan already of Telarc recordings in general and Michael Murray as an organist in particular. It has now been nearly 20 years since that day in the record store, and I have never had second thoughts nor tired of hearing it.

Like a thrilling novel, the Symphonie Concertante grabs you right from page 1, with a tense pedal point and energetic, overlapping fugual entries in the strings. (Jongen himself once remarked that while most symphonic composers have to build up to a fugue, he STARTED his piece with one!) After just 37 seconds of this buildup, the organ makes a grand entrance with a full-throated roar that will shake the dust from your china and possibly lead to war with your next-door neighbors.

But, if all you want is a piece to show off your powerful stereo (though this indeed will do that) you may be disappointed, because one of the strengths of this work is that it is NOT all noise and bombast. After the first two thunderous phrases from the organ, things get down to business.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By David M. Fox on July 12, 2003
This CD is a knockout! Recorded totally digitally (DDD), it has no sound problems whatever, and the performance is flawless.
Most people have never heard of Joseph Jongen, but consider this: Jongen's Symphonie Concertante (Opus 81) is probably the best major composition for organ and orchestra in the history of music, and is known among the cognoscenti as featuring perhaps the best blending of organ and orchestra. Ranging from delicate pianissimo woodwind/violin sections to thunderous full organ and full orchestra fortissimo sections with blaring brass, the piece moves from a lively start with alternate organ and orchestra sections to (to me) one of the most thrilling movements in all of classical music (the dramatic Tocatta). (I am writing this on the 50th anniversary of Jongen's death (12 July 1953)).
The organist is Michael Murray, and he handles the circa 35 minutes of difficult non-stop organ playing excellently. He takes the modern and very large Davies Hall Ruffati organ from very sweet choir sections to snarling reeds to a full organ that overwhelms my stereo, even with a powered subwoofer. The San Francisco Symphony plays great counterpoint to Murray's organ, and the organ and orchestra come together with true overwhelming power in the Tocatta. I think all the musicians drew some extra energy from the fact that this was the first recording of the Davies Hall organ (in 1984), and it shows in their playing. This recording will probably remain the ne plus ultra recording of the Symphonie Concertante for all time.
If (like me) you first heard the Tocatta from this piece as a solo organ recording by Virgil Fox, you HAVE to hear it with orchestra.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David C. Green on May 31, 2008
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I must echo the statements already made, if for no other reason but to further the reader's need to buy this disc! I must say that I knew I would be a fan of this disc before I ever heard it. The repertory for organ and orchestra is depressingly small compared to other instruments, but this piece by Joseph Jongen (NOT Longen, as accidentally typed on the disc cover...) certainly blows many of them out of the water. The combination of the organ with the orchestra is perfect, and there is such diversity in how various sounds merge that the listener will be excited each time s/he listens to this piece. Also, Michael Murray does a fantastic job of interpretting this masterpiece. He commands the Davies Hall instrument with finesse. The orchestra, directed by de Waart, is equally adept. I must say it is a mind-blowing display of fantastic composition on Jongen's part, and equally fantastic capability by the performers. Bravo!! Also, the Franck pieces are a nice addition, though nowhere near as captivating as the symphonie. Then again, what can you expect after an experience like THAT?!?!
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