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Weber: Overtures

Carl Maria von Weber , Antoni Wit , New Zealand Symphony Orchestra Audio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

Price: $13.92 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Weber: Overtures + Symphonies 1 & 2 + Invitation to the Dance
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Product Details

  • Orchestra: New Zealand Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Antoni Wit
  • Composer: Carl Maria von Weber
  • Audio CD (December 16, 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Naxos
  • ASIN: B001JNCOBU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #222,541 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Euryanthe, opera, J. 291, (Op. 81): Overture
2. Peter Schmoll und seine Nachbarn, opera, J. 8 (Op. 8) (dialogue lost): Overture
3. Oberon, opera, J. 306: Overture
4. Turandot, incidental music, J. 75 (Op. 37): Overture and Act 2 March
5. Preciosa, incidental music for soloist, chorus & orchestra, J. 279 (Op. 78): Overture
6. Silvana, opera, J. 87: Overture
7. Abu Hassan, opera, J. 106: Overture

Editorial Reviews

Review

These performances have lots of energy and crisp attacks, but not much else. There is little orchestral color; strings are dry and winds mismatched. Missing are most of the ingredients that make Weber's music so fine: his unerring sense of drama, gorgeous lyricism, and the sweeping plasticity that binds it all together. These seem like readings straight from the score, with no reference to the operas or to performing tradition; sudden tempo shifts often interrupt the flow of the music. An arid recording spotlights timpani whacks and wind solos, to the detriment of the whole. The mistuned horns that introduce Der Freischütz put the lid on the coffin -- Fanfare Archive, James H. North, May/June 2009

Product Description

Carl Maria von Weber composed a number of pioneering works for the operatic stage as well as incidental music whose highly attractive scores combine Classical principles of clarity with a unique lyricism and orchestral mastery that would inspire later R

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Weber's Orchestral Works for the Theater January 9, 2009
Format:Audio CD
Although titled 'Weber Overtures', this CD consists not only of overtures but also incidental music for theater pieces. It includes the overtures to Weber's best-known operas -- 'Der Freischütz', 'Euryanthe' and 'Oberon'-- as well as for other lesser-known operas -- 'Peter Schmoll and His Neighbors', 'Silvana', 'Abu Hassan' -- and incidental music for stageworks -- 'The Ruler of the Spirits', 'Turandot' (Schiller's dramatization of Gozzi's fairy tale), 'Preciosa' -- and a free-standing piece, 'Jubel-Ouvertüre'. From the very earliest work one hears Weber's wonderful way with orchestration -- it should be remembered that Berlioz used several examples of Weber's orchestration in his treatise on the subject -- and his unending flow of engaging melody.

The three well-known overtures are giving sparkling performances in quite wonderful sound. Stereo separation provided by the recording engineer, Tim Handley, allows one to visualize the sound-stage vividly. One of the longer pieces here, the ten-minute overture to 'Peter Schmoll', is notable for sounding exactly like the mature Weber even though written by a boy of fifteen, and indeed being, for me, the real discovery on the disc; it's the one I keep going back to because of both its dramatic cogency and melodic fecundity.

It's amusing to hear the 'Turandot' music because it is, of course, much more familiar from its use in Hindemith's 'Symphonic Metamorphoses on Themes of Carl Maria von Weber.' This CD includes the overture and the Act II march from 'Turandot.' Also influenced by early 19th-century notions of Eastern music is the sparkling little three-and-a-half-minute gem, the overture to 'Abu Hassan', a 'Turkish' singspiel. (I wonder if Turkish music really goes indulge in such delightful fughettas?
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4.0 out of 5 stars Fine recording July 6, 2013
By BillyA
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
There isn't much to add to Mr. Morrison's excellent review of this CD. However, one reason to get this one is that it has works very seldom seen on recordings, either now or back in LP days, namely the overtures to Turandot, Silvana, Peter Schmoll, Jubel and Ruler of the Spirits. Of the overtures that are pretty much "warhorses" (i.e. the rest of them), the recordings are well done, if not the pinnacle. At Naxos' price, you wouldn't be cheating yourself. Total time is 76:24.
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