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  • Rachmaniov: Symphony, No. 3 / Symphonic Dances
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Rachmaniov: Symphony, No. 3 / Symphonic Dances


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Audio CD, September 27, 1994
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$45.89 $1.46

1. I. Lento - Allegro Moderato
2. II. Adagio Ma Non Troppo
3. III. Allegro - Allegro Vivace
4. I. Non Allegro
5. II. Andante Con Moto (Tempo Di Valse)
6. III. Lento Assai - Allegro Vivace

Product Details

  • Orchestra: Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: David Zinman
  • Composer: Sergei Rachmaniov
  • Audio CD (September 27, 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Telarc
  • ASIN: B000003CZ6
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #283,376 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 9, 2002
Format: Audio CD
David Zinman delivers a reliable, at times inspired account of the 3rd Symphony. The start of the 3rd is slack but progressively gets better, the orchestral contrasts and drama becoming more profound. The exposition repeat is in the first movement, though the movement is still a bit shorter than other recordings with the exposition repeat. The Telarc engineers manage a vivid recording, though the sound level indicates distant microphone placement, a recurring problem with their Zinman/Baltimore SO recordings.
The Symphonic Dances are full of color and energy. Overall, the Dances are the more consistently inspired of the two works on this disc.
The only real problem with this disc is that at full-price it really is uncompetitive within the field of superior recordings available at lower prices. For example, the Ashkenazy/Concertgebouw or Mackerras/Royal Liverpool PO recordings offer these two pieces at more competitive pricing. And if you only want the 3rd Symphony, then the competitive position of this disc only falls further against such masterful recordings as Ormandy/Philadelphia Orch., Stokowski/National Phil. Orch..
This recording is worthy of respect, though. If Telarc ever re-issues this disc at mid-price--as they are starting to do with other recordings--then these two pieces should receive stronger consideration from collectors. For now the disc is a good issue, but not a first choice.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Beverly A. Crandall on February 23, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is wonderfully vigorous and vital music, remarkable in the light that it is Rachmaninoff's last composition. To give yourself a treat (yes, I know we're in a recession; you could do it in stages), get these three performances:
1--The lusty two-piano CD version with Martha Argerich and Alexandre Rabinovitch, an explosion of son et lumiere. You'll get the bonus of Suites Opus 5 and 17 in addition to the Symphonic Dances.
2--The Baltimore Symphony CD with David Zinman conducting; Symphony No. 3 is offered as well.
3--Now try a DVD featuring not only the Symphonic Dances but also The Bells and Symphony No. 2. The conductor is Semyon Bychkov, who was born in Leningrad and shares insights into Rachmaninoff's tragic departure from Russia with his family, his need to provide for them by playing a demanding schedule of concerts as a soloist in America, and his unrequited yearning for the Russia of his youth. This DVD is a treasure, and for fun I Googled orchestra instruments to brush up on some of the wind and percussion instruments I had forgotten about.
The real joy is to contrast the two-piano and orchestral versions. Mr. Rachmaninoff, always highly critical of his own work, found the Symphonic Dances more than acceptable. They are superlative!
Beverly Crandall
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Format: Audio CD
David Zinman in mid-1990's sound from Telarc -- you could hardly ask for more. Like his recording of Rachmaninov's Second Symphony with these forces, this recording of the Third is very good too -- presence, weight, transparency in the sound, with the solo instruments in the second movement given their bloom, in lovely work by the solo violinist, flautist, and oboist at different points in the movement. The emotional core of the piece seems to me to lie in the first movement, with its gorgeous melody in the cellos (and horns?) soon after the unsettled opening. Zinman develops the material richly in the first half of the movement, at which point it is challenged by a vigorous uprushing rhythmic figure that, if it were orchestrated more acerbically, might recall Prokofiev. The transition back to the lyrical material for the movement's quiet close is very well managed. The second movement's less intense lyricism is balanced by scherzo-like writing that has a cheeky, toe-tapping Eulenspiegelish quality to it. The lyrical sections feature the soloists and seem quite lightly scored, but the scherzo part has plenty of weight when needed. The final movement has a lot of rhythmic life and considerable thematic variety. Despite the use of the "Dies Irae" motif, it comes across as a lively movement, with plenty of energy. Indeed, the overall expressive arc of the whole piece seems to be towards greater lightness and liveliness of spirit.

The "Symphonic Dances" also receive a fine performance. The first movement, with its melancholy and eloquent middle section framed by strongly rhythmic material, is perhaps the most predictable of the three. The other movements seem wilder and weirder.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I am no Rachmaninoff expert to be sure. My familiarity with his work pretty much does not go beyond a couple of piano concertos, and "Variation on a Theme of Paganinni."

That being said, I know what I like when I hear it, and David Zinman leads the Baltimore Symphony through a rich, warm, gloriously romantic performance of the Russian composer's symphony and orchestral works.

Zinman provides an engaging, powerful, and colorful presentation that makes for a rewarding listen.

Being a lifetime Baltimorean, a town better known for crab cakes than culture, it makes me proud to hear my symphony orchestra perform marvelously on the world stage.

The Telarc digital recording is sharp, accurate, and transparent.
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