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Symphony 3: Tragica / Funeral March

F. Draeseke Audio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

Price: $12.94 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 5 Songs, 2000 $8.99  
Audio CD, 2000 $12.94  

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Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Symphonia Tragica, Op. 40: I. Andante - Allegro risoluto12:29Album Only
listen  2. Symphonia Tragica, Op. 40: II. Grave (Adagio ma non troppo) 9:17Album Only
listen  3. Symphonia Tragica, Op. 40: III. Scherzo: Allegro molto vivace 9:58Album Only
listen  4. Symphonia Tragica, Op. 40: IV. Finale: Allegro con brio14:45Album Only
listen  5. Funeral March in E minor, Op. 79 8:17Album Only

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 13, 2000)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Cpo Records
  • ASIN: B00004TTJZ
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #197,519 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unknown Symphonic Masterpiece August 6, 2004
Format:Audio CD
Draeseke's 'Tragica' is quite simply an unknown symphonic masterpiece by an unknown master-composer. What is so fascinating about Draeseke (1835-1913) is that he forged an idiom which synthesizes the 'New German' music of Liszt and Wagner with the traditional classicism of Beethoven, Brahms, etc. Brahms himself thought Draeseke to be his most formidable rival, but history, sadly, has forgotten him.

The 'Tragica', although (like all music) containing reminiscences of other composers, is very much echt-Draeseke. Quite simply, no-one else could have composed this noble, visionary symphony. And the performance by Weigle and his radio orchestra is very good indeed - much the best of the recordings that have been available. It is alert, captures the passion and nobility of the piece and is also beautifully recorded.

All that we need now is for a world-class conductor and orchestra to take on the 'Tragica'. For example, Mariss Jansons and his Bavarian orchestra would be perfect for this repertoire. In the meantime, CPO are to be congratulated on promoting this wonderful music by a great composer still largely waiting to be discovered.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mr. Raff, Mr. Pfitzner, Meet Mr. Draeseke October 15, 2000
Format:Audio CD
Who in the blazes was Felix Draeseke? Decades ago, in the Dark Ages of the long-playing record, a classical music outfit improbably named Varèse-Sarabande (they're still around) issued an antique, most likely wartime, recording of Draeseke's (1835-1913) Third Symphony, Opus 40, in C, the "Symphonia Tragica" (1886). I bought the record, not because I had the faintest inkling about the composer but because the slip-cover sported an acrylic by Ron Miller, the astronomical artist: It showed a primordial moon rising over the horizon of a still-molten earth. Very dramatic. Close to sublime. Yet how this concerned the music, I haven't (once again) even the faintest notion. Legend narrates that in his lifetime, Draeseke occupied a niche among musical reputations close to that of Brahms. (So, of course, did Raff and Rheinberger.) Critics supposedly ranked the "Symphonia Tragica" among the exalted instances of its genre, and, in the 1940s, Wilhelm Furtwängler allegedly planned to reintroduce it in the repertory. (Somehow Goebbels found Draeseke congenial, however, causing Furtwängler to drop his plans.) Is the fuss justified? It depends how one phrases the question. If we're on guard for the equal of Brahms' C-Minor Symphony, then observers might excuse our mild disappointment. If we're hunting for neglected scores of true seriousness, then third parties might well note our interest and seek to share in the merit of its object. For no one can doubt that Draeseke's C-Major Symphony springs from the purest water of Teutonic earnestness. Read more ›
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars One day we will have a great performance . . . March 8, 2011
Format:Audio CD
I don't think it fair to an unknown composer for people to write rush reviews after one hearing and prejudice an issue for other music lovers. This is not Brahms, nor Wagner, nor Mendelssohn or (what a grotesque notion) Schubert: with all these composers you know (at least approximately) where you stand with a new recording after the first audition.
I think all reviewers should return to the recording and re-audition the slow movement - the heart of this symphony. This is very advanced stuff, both in its rhetoric and its harmonic texture; and this is where the tragedy is enacted that some listeners seems to have missed altogether. If you want to convey a flavour of this to a reader who doesn't know it, you had better look in the direction of Mahler. I mention here that I took the opportunity to play this recording to an audience, of whom none even knew his name; and all singled out the slow movement as deeply affecting and "significant" - after one hearing!
The problem with Dreseke is, however, not just that he is unknown. All unknown music needs time to be acclimatised. This issue comes to the fore in the present performance. Whatever performance tradition there was - established by Bülow, Nikisch and several other first-rank conductors at the end of the 19th century, broke off after the War. As a result, Weigle had to establish a new tradition, across a gap of near silence of about 70 years; and this is notoriously difficult for a young musician who has not grown up on this idiom, but on the fashions and customs of the late 20th century. I would say, it is an impossible demand, and not likely to succeed until we have had at least a dozen conductors experimenting with the style.
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