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  • Symphony 3: Symphony of Sorrowful Songs
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Symphony 3: Symphony of Sorrowful Songs


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Audio CD, April 13, 2004
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Frequently Bought Together

Symphony 3: Symphony of Sorrowful Songs + Gorecki: Symphony, No. 3, Opus 36
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 13, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Deutsche Grammophon
  • ASIN: B0001XAS7Q
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #226,519 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Lento (Sostenuto Tranquillo Ma Cantabile) - Joanna Koslowska
2. Lento E Largo (Tranquillissimo - Cantabilissimo - Dolcissimo - Legatissimo) - Joanna Koslowska
3. Lento (Cantabile Semplice) - Joanna Koslowska

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Daum on November 3, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Although the Nonesuch recording has always been the one to receive most attention, it feels rushed and uncomfortable. As slow as the piece is, I always come away from that recording with the jitters. And it doesn't hit my heart, either. Despite the fact that Ms. Upshaw's voice is exceptionally beautiful, it doesn't pierce, penetrate, and rub away my defenses the way that Joanna Kozlowska's thicker, more emotionally present, voice does.

I hesitate to give the impression that one can "use" a work of art to fabricate a spiritual experience; nevertheless, the Kord/Kozloswka recording is undeniably mystical. The pace is slightly slower than the Zinman/Upshaw, more languid, and much more hypnotic. The ascending figure of the first movement accomplishes the amazing feat of creating the sensation of reaching toward the ineffable. The repeated bursts of dense, atonal chords in the third movement erupt like intense flashes of divine light. And throughout it all Ms. Kozlowska delivers the songs with such refined and masterly pathos that you do not need a translation to understand exactly what she is singing. The lamentation of the second movement, gentle and whisper soft, is almost more profound and intense than one can bear. To listen is to be transformed.

Of course, Henryk Gorecki would probably scoff derisively at my assessment, as well as at this recording, for being as undeniably, unapologetically spiritual as it is. And with good cause. Once something gets labelled "spiritual" it immediately becomes susceptible to criminal sentimentality. But you and I are better than that, aren't we? We can recognize and experience something as sacred without destroying it in the process. Buy this cd and find out.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Concerned Citizen on August 2, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Written by Henryk Gorecki in 1976 while the Soviet Union was still occupying Poland, the Symphony No. 3 "Symphony of Sorrowful Songs" is a beautiful, sorrowful masterpiece that powerfully communicates the enduring Christian faith of Catholics in Poland who survived five years of brutal German Nazi rule and later four decades of brutal Soviet occupation of their country. He dedicated the symphony to his wife.

Conductor Kazimierz Kord and the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra recorded this excellent performance of the "Symphony of Sorrowful Songs" in 1994 with Polish Soprano Joanna Kozlowska. Kozlowska's emotive clear voice evokes the suffering communicated by the three different prayers upon which each of the three movements of the symphony are based.

This CD is priced low, but the quality of the recording is excellent. Of the three recordings of this symphony that I have listened to so far, this is by far the best because the Warsaw Philharmonic and Kozlowska perform so harmoniously together.

The 30 minute first movement is centered on a 15th-century lament from the Holy Cross Monastery in Poland in which Jesus' mother speaks to her suffering son. You might be tempted to turn up the volume at first because the lush string chords build very slowly in intensity until the lamentation prayer is beautifully sung. Then the intensity slowly and gently decreases. The timing and the pitch of both Kozlowska and the orchestra are superb.

The very poignant second movement (10 minutes) is based on a prayer to the Virgin Mary that was scratched into the wall of a Gestapo cell by an 18-year-old girl being held prisoner by the Nazis the city of Zakopane. Kozlowska's voice and orchestra blend harmoniously together to convey the emotion intensity of the prayer.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Lost in Siberia on June 4, 2012
Format: MP3 Music
but the MP3 download here is a different album, by different performers. A Kord/Kozlowska MP3 download is available here: Gorecki Symphony No. 3 Part of the problem in links may be that Kozlowska is also spelled Koslowska.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Douglas on November 18, 2010
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I must admit that I had never heard of Gorecki until he died last week. Read his obit in the NY Times, noted that this piece sold 1,000,000 copies [for a symphony?!?], bought this version on Amazon because it was cheap. Holy cow. This is one amazing piece of music. There is no instant gratification here. It builds slowly, but what a ride. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on December 18, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I absolutely love this CD. I only gave it 3 stars because with this purchase I was to get it downloaded free to my cloud. The one in my cloud I'd different from my CD. The soprano and the orchestra are not the same. My CD is the Warsaw symphony and soprano is Joanna Kozlowka. Beautiful. I would have preferred the download to be what I had ordered. I'm now afraid to order to my cloud. Will I get what I really want?

Updating my review. I should specify my 3 stars isn't for the cd. I love the cd. It's for the wrong one being sent to my cloud player.
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