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Onslow: Symphonies 2 & 4

4 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 16, 2002
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Onslow: Symphonies 2 & 4 + Onslow: Symphonies 1 & 3
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Editorial Reviews


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Product Details

  • Orchestra: Radio Philharmonie Hannover des NDR
  • Conductor: Johannes Goritzki
  • Composer: George Onslow
  • Audio CD (April 16, 2002)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: CPO
  • ASIN: B000063DLN
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,153 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By David F. Wolven on November 26, 2008
Format: Audio CD
I've enjoyed Onslow's chamber music for 20 plus years (though considering the volume of works he composed, we've still only scratched the surface), but until recently, his orchestral works have remained elusive. That has changed. CPO has done us a huge service by recording Onslow's 4 symphonies by an orchestra and conductor who, while not household names, certainly do his music justice. There is nothing earth-shattering or ground-breaking here; after all, Onslow was referred to as a "French Beethoven". But everything here is tuneful, tasteful, and impeccably constructed. Certainly not "deep" works, whatever that means, but they are beautiful and entertaining (rather the way I feel about Saint-Saens, a composer whom I greatly respect). Not a note is wasted, and it all ties together into a splendid package. I don't know what else Onslow wrote for the orchestra, but if other works exist, I look forward to hearing them performed by these same artists. Strongly recommended!!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By G.D. VINE VOICE on May 8, 2009
Format: Audio CD
Georges Onslow (1784-1853) may have been French, but his symphonies belong firmly in the German early romantic tradition of Weber, Mendelssohn and Schumann. And what fine works they are - the elegant, spirited and consistently enjoyable second reveals a master of orchestration with eventful string writing and rustic, elfin use of the woodwind strongly reminiscent of Mendelssohn. Overall, however, it's the Schumann connection and the Schumannesque turn of the phrase that is most obvious in this very pleasant work. The fourth is more profound but just as skillfully written and with excellently shaped dramatic climaxes - in particular the central adagio is memorable. The Hanover Radio Philharmonic obviously enjoys themselves and provide lively, vigorous playing under Goritzki, who clearly has these works under his skin. The sound quality is clear and dynamic, and this issue is all in all strongly recommended. I am vacillating between four and five stars for this one, but given that the other reviewer here seems to have felt the same way and ended up on four, I'll give it five.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Robin Ray on November 29, 2009
Format: Audio CD
Discoveries like this is why I hate dying. Everyone knows about Mendelssohn & Mozart & Beethoven & Brahms &...Onslow? These symphonies do not require repeat listenings to appreciate and/or enjoy. Yes, they are familiar right from the onset - shades of Beethoven's seriousness, Schubert's playfulness, Weber's transcendentalism - but I digress. Take them for what they are - stunning masterpieces of the romantic era that should never have been neglected. And I am glad I've lived long enough to make this discovery. Bravo to CPO, Goritzki & the NDR Philharmonic for enriching our lives with this recording.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful By J. R. Trtek on November 28, 2012
Format: Audio CD
This is the second of two CPO discs devoted to the four symphonies of early Romantic composer Georges Onslow, known primarily for a heap of quintets and other assorted chamber works. Unlike the reviewers who preceded me here, I did not find much to admire in this music -- to me it's repetitious and meandering, without a lot of development or personality. Think of Mendelssohn's lesser orchestral work and move it down a notch and you pretty much have what's on this release -- pleasant, yes, but certainly no great shakes. If you're bound and determined to sample Onslow's symphonic output, I'd suggest you try the companion disc that has the Nos. 1 and 3. The former has a good first movement, and the latter is quite engaging after you get past its own somewhat dull initial segment.
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