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Lorin Maazel Conducts Wagner: Volume 2: Siegfried Idyll, Preludes & Overtures

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 24, 2000
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Lorin Maazel Conducts Wagner
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Product Details

  • Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Conductor: Maazel
  • Composer: Wagner
  • Audio CD (October 24, 2000)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: RCA
  • ASIN: B000055XKB
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #216,709 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By Santa Fe Listener HALL OF FAME on September 26, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Except for a disappointing couple of rounds with Klaus Tennstedt, Wagner has been scarce from Berlin since the death of Karajan. Recently there was a very fine CD of excerpts under Abbado, and this one with Maazel (featuring material that doesn't overlap Abbado's), shows off the orchestra's ravishing tone and effortless virtuosity. Maazel can be a perverse interpreter--one almost expects it of him--but here he's behaving well, and his ability to make ensembles sound good is undeniable. Some say he has more podium technique than anyone else in his generation. Be that as it may, ths gorgeous-sounding recording also boasts demonstration-quality sonics. Overall, a definite winner. But be sure to buy it in the mid-price issue the BMG recently made available.
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Format: Audio CD
- With the recent of appointment of Maazel to the New York Philharmonic is another testament that this guy has one of the top handfuls of much sought after leadership on the orchestral podium.
In this recording, which arrived from mail just yesterday and which I've listened to for about 6 hours already, I am constantly massaged with Sumptuous and Smooth sound of the Berliner's. I especially love Maazel's version of Meistersinger and Siegfried Idyll. The Meistersinger is just a teeny tad slow, especially in the closing bars, but, what resulted is a more romantic interpretation, almost ala, Tristan & Isolde. Maazel really stretched the decelerando, beginning 16 bars before the end, creating a greatly more romantic performance. I only wished that he would've brought the main theme back slightly faster, which would create a greater urgency and energy.
I've studied this piece for many years now, under different versions of conductors and orchestras. I have the entire printed score of this long opera, still, I am amazed at the skill which Wagner weave his marvelous counterpoints. He is truly a very fluent composer, not bad considering that he is mostly self-taught. Even Lizst, who once were Wagner's teacher, admits that now the student has become a master and the master - a student. Wagner's skills as an orchestrator and composer, especially in his harmonic vocabulary superseded his former master by huge leaps and bounds. Lizst also has been hugely superseded by Wagner's mastery of counterpoint, pretty much making Lizst sound like a beginner.
This Siegfried Idyll, I think is one of the best out there. I am slightly disappointed that the clarinet counterpoint in the solo horn motive is not brought forward a little more, so it's character is hidden.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This CD is a winner. I have always wanted a good recording of Wagner's Siegfried Idyll. This CD has the best version I have heard to date, which you might expect from the great Berliner Philharmoniker and Conductor Lorin Maazel. This CD would be worth the price for the Idyll selection alone. But there is more - so much more. Rheinfahrt from Gotterdammerung and the overture from Faust and the prelude to Die Meistersinger and the Prelude to Lohengrin and the Overture to Rienzi add to the beauty of this collection. This CD is a "must have" for any serious collector. Get the CD, read the notes, load the CD into a really good sound system, sit back, relax and enjoy.
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