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Symphony 3

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Audio CD, September 24, 1996
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Editorial Reviews

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Symphony No. 3: I. Con moto: quarter note = 84 [Tragic] -Detroit Symphony Orchestra 2:06$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Symphony No. 3: II. half note = 72-80 [Lyric] -Detroit Symphony Orchestra 1:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Symphony No. 3: III. Poco piu mosso: half note = 94-104 [Pastoral] -Detroit Symphony Orchestra 6:26$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Symphony No. 3: IV. half note = 112 [Fugue - Dramatic] -Detroit Symphony Orchestra 3:26$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Symphony No. 3: V. Con moto: whole note = 66-72 [Dramatic - Tragic]Detroit Symphony Orchestra 3:18$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Symphony No. 3: I. Molto moderato - with simple expressionDetroit Symphony Orchestra 9:46Album Only
listen  7. Symphony No. 3: II. Allegro moltoDetroit Symphony Orchestra 8:04Album Only
listen  8. Symphony No. 3: III. Andantino quasi allegrettoDetroit Symphony Orchestra 9:31Album Only
listen  9. Symphony No. 3: IV. Molto deliberatoDetroit Symphony Orchestra13:25Album Only

Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 24, 1996)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Chandos
  • ASIN: B000000AZL
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #292,088 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Alejandra Vernon HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 2, 2005
Format: Audio CD
The sound of America's vast plains and the energy of its people are reflected in Copland and Harris compositions, and they always remind me of driving for miles and miles and seeing nothing but wheat fields and sky, and are also reminiscent of the small rural towns with earnest, hard-working people that one finds from coast to coast. How this feeling can be translated into notes of music is a mystery, but both composers mastered it, and Copland's music in particular; hearing a few notes from any of his pieces is hearing pure Americana.

Roy Harris (1898-1979) premiered his Third Symphony in 1939, and it is by far his most famous piece, as well as one of the greatest symphonic works from an American composer. Its movements segue into each other, and it has a strong theme that punches its way into one's memory, and stays there for a lifetime.
Aaron Copland (1900-1990) premiered his Third Symphony in 1946, and is here coupled well with the Harris Third. They are both equally strong, though the much shorter Harris work might have the edge on "greatness", and also on being the more memorable of the two.

Estonian conductor Neeme Jarvi leads the Detroit Symphony with passion, marvelous in the gentle passages as well as the many vigorous ones. The recording was made at Detroit Symphony Orchestra Hall in October of 1996, and the sound is excellent. Total playing time is 57'25.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Daniel J. Sheffield on November 8, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Considering there's no shortage of Amazon reviewers (who in futility seem to long to be famous writers) creating reviews which sprinkle the Roy Harris and Copland works with such phrases as "prairie", "expansion", "rural", "wheat fields", etc., I'd like to look at the CD release, not the work. The work, as music, speaks for itself and needs no failing verbal descriptions. Let's look at the Chandos release with Neeme Järvi at the helm of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

I never made it to the Copland as I hit a complete brick wall at the Roy Harris "Symphony No. 3". The sound quality is typical Chandos, slightly reverberant but with some bite... that part of this release was great - better than any version I've heard. However, the best engineering in the world couldn't erase the fact that the tempo is SO much faster than what I'm used to hearing in EVERY other version I've heard (Bernstein, Mata, Alsop) in the Roy Harris work.

Listen to the sample of the "Pastoral" section, Track 3 - no lyrical breadth, no heartfelt emotion, no smooth articulation... instead there's just a fleet "let's get this over and done with". One reviewer said "However the big problem is that Järvi rushes through this wonderful piece like he has a pending hair appointment. He has no understanding of the melancholy which underlies this music (which Bernstein fully understands)." I heartily concur.

If you're into sound quality at all costs and never mind the interpretation, then get it. If you're a music lover... don't. I'm waiting for the day that Roy Harris's amazingly lyrical "Symphony No. 3", which is now one of my favorite works, appears on SACD, somehow, somewhere. Until then, I'd keep my bet on Mata with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra on the Dorian label. The Dorian release is the best all-around version I've heard (thus far anyway), in my subjective opinion.
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20 of 26 people found the following review helpful By K. Farrington on February 25, 2000
Format: Audio CD
With an excellent coupling, Chandos provides us with first rate performances of two of the most succesful American symphonies. As a foreigner, Jaarvi knows how the folksy music should be played. For instance, in the Copland first movement the music starts quietly and swells in a huge arch to a big climax which in the concert hall should be nothing less than explosive. I went to see this work at San Diego Concert Hall some years ago and was disappointed at the current offerings on CD when I subsequently attempted to obtain my own definitive copy. However, this effect is captured here, the conductor resists the usual tendency to push the pace on, thus enabling the listener to pursue his thoughts in real time with Copland's exposition. The other movements are excellently played but to my mind it is the way the first movement is played which differentiates the performances of this work. The Harris work is a celebrated symphony which has always been played since it was penned in the 1930s. The mixture of New England hymnody and folk strains are totally synthesised into something new by Harris. It will be remembered that he was born in a log cabin, like our Abe! The opening is redolent of the hymn and yet the mood becomes transfigured as the symphony takes its course through stages entitled: Lyric; Tragic; Pastoral, etc. The conductor and orchestra do a wonderful job in playing this well known and well played symphony in a way that sounds fresh and exciting. The first performance must have been really special. This new music must have been like a breath of fresh air to the listeners. Harris has sublimated the sources of inspiration that made him a composer and yet kept pure those elements that move anyone who cares about or loves the Spirit of America.Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 12, 2005
Format: Audio CD
In a time when American music is finding a resurgence in the orchestral repertoire due to the highly promoted and much deserved prominence of such composers as John Adams and Philip Glass, the time for paying closer attention to the greats of the past century has certainly arrived. Charles Ives, Samuel Barber, Aaron Copland, Roy Harris, Peter Lieberson, Morten Lauridsen, Charles Griffes, et al certainly deserve more attention now.

This very fine recording by Neeme Järvi and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra goes along way in winning an audience for Copland and Harris, continuing their previous homages to Chadwick, Barber, etc. The Symphony No. 3 of Roy Harris is as beautifully constructed a work as any that came out of the middle of the last century. Though played without pause through five movements entitled Tragic, Lyric, Pastoral, Dramatic, and Dramatic/Tragic, the lush orchestration principally relies on the spectrum of strings to evoke that idiosyncratic sound of the vast openness of the prairie that confronted the individual pioneer of our history. This is a magnificent piece that appeals directly to the emotions while maintaining the most critical attention to compositional techniques.

Copland's Symphony No. 3, while not as often performed as his generically American ballet scores for 'Appalachian Spring', 'Rodeo', 'Billy the Kid' and even his national anthem 'Fanfare for the Common Man', it is a lushly orchestrated string of movements in the classical symphonic structure: Molto moderation, Allegro molto, Andantino quasi allegretto, and Molto deliberato (the seed for The Fanfare for the Common Man). And while this work is 'pure music' rather than programmatic music like his other works it remains quintessentially Copland.
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