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Thread: BEST/FAVORITE RECORDINGS OF THE TCHAIKOVSKY SYMPHONIES - help

  1. #106
    Member SONDEK's Avatar
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    HAYDN67

    I strongly second this choice of yours... (My runner-up)

    Tilson Thomas / Boston Symphony on DG
    TCHAIKOVSKY Symphony No. 1 Tilson Thomas Boston SO.jpg

    ... And here's another great one
    Haitink / Concertgebouw on PHILIPS
    TCHAIKOVSKY Symphony No. 1 Haitink Concertgebouw.jpg

    (Both on Vinyl LP too... Nice!)

    Played well - yes there are some disasters on record - Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 1 is just gorgeous!

  2. #107
    Junior Member cbjes's Avatar
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    I really like this oldie.

    R-4106510-1355435980-6680.jpeg.jpg

  3. #108
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    For a complete set of Tchaikovsky symphonies I really enjoy the Svetlanov set originally issued on EMI melodyia in the long lost days of vinyl. I owned five of them excluding Manfred and the 5th. They were dramatic and showed clearly that Tchaikovsky was a genuine Russian composer rather than the western imitator that many earlier recordings had sought to portray. The orchestras were loud and unpolished but so exciting. The recordings have been reissued as part of the Scribendum Svetlanov box.
    However there are a couple of individual performances that stand out for me. One is Fricsay in the Pathetique, a dramatic first movement particularly the development, and a heartbreaking finale. Then there is Felix Heiss. I’ve no idea who he was, he was on Barrington Coupe’s Fidelio Label known for its pseudonyms and his recording of the 4th is infamous for a few seconds of tape towards the end of the slow movement going in back to front but the performance is incredible I used to think it was a Russian Orchestra due to the raw passion and glaring brass but it is many years since I have heard it and memories fade and deceive. Incidentally if anyone knows who the conductor was I would be interested to know. Heiss also did a very good 5th and 2nd Little Russian, though the latter was ruined by an execrable recording. He also recorded the 2nd piano concerto albeit in the Siloti abridgement.

  4. #109
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    My 1st tier Tchaikovsky conductors in the Symphonies 1-6 are (1) Gennady Rozhdestvensky (Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra, also known as the USSR State Radio Symphony Orchestra, & he has also made recordings with the London Symphony Orchestra & Leningrad Philharmonic, etc.), (2) Yevgeny Mravinsky (Leningrad Philharmonic, on DG), and (3) Igor Markevitch (London Symphony Orchestra, on Philips). I'd place (4) Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra just behind those three--although Ormandy had a wonderful orchestra whose sound was particularly well suited to Tchaikovsky's music, and (5) for better digital sound, but not quite in the same league with my top 3, Maris Jansons (Oslo Philharmonic, on Chandos). I've not heard Svetlanov's cycle, nor Pletnev's.

    Rozhdestvensky 1, Moscow Radio S.O.: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oNOgC8bGYnM
    Rozhdestvensky 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWcZGbakxq0
    Rozhdestvensky 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mCXGjRB5aSw
    Rozhdestvensky 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mh-gJTQCXXE
    Rozhdestvensky 5: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1nDZA7RNm4
    Rozhdestvensky 6: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqupJH2jWSc

    Mravinsky 4, 5, 6, on DG, with the Lennigrad Philharmonic: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UL7hNANFEKI

    Markevitch 1-6, with the London Symphony Orchestra: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDxB...ZjGivqfsKZjIRt

    Jansons 1-6 (digital): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsDW...7zHVMy24V4S0Vs
    https://www.amazon.com/Tchaikovsky-S...DC6SM14QMC7MAS

    My 2nd tier (very good) Tchaikovsky conductors are (6) Yuri Temirkanov, (7) Bernard Haitink, and (8) Claudio Abbado.

    Although I'd place Haitink in the 1st tier for his superb recordings of Tchaikovsky's Overtures (which are underrated recordings, IMO):

    Haitink 1812 Overture: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1umkzjiqk10
    Haitink Francesca da Rimini: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C40jiH3hFhc
    https://www.amazon.com/Overture-Capr...s=music&sr=1-1
    Haitink Romeo and Juliet Overture: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ReddbQtQ0mA

    https://www.amazon.com/Tchaikovsky-S...FAW3K1S16CT37V
    https://www.amazon.com/Temirkanov-Co...FAW3K1S16CT37V
    https://www.amazon.com/Collectors-Tc...s=music&sr=1-1
    https://www.amazon.com/Claudio-Abbad...s=music&sr=1-1
    Last edited by Josquin13; Oct-18-2020 at 06:48.

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  6. #110
    Senior Member Granate's Avatar
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    Default Sneak peak of my Tchaikovsky Symphony Challenge

    This summer I did my Tchaikovsky Symphony challenge (No Manfred yet). I tried to survey all existing recordings and I came up with a shortlist that I should challenge somewhen:

    Complete Cycles: Final challenge

    Markevitch LSO
    Jurowski LPO
    Bernstein NYPO
    Ormandy PhO RCA
    Abbado CSO
    Maazel WPO
    Rozhdestvensky Moscow Melodiya
    Svetlanov USSR Melodiya

    Partial cycles: Final Challenge

    Fricsay Andromeda set
    Kempen/Dorati RCO Decca
    Jansons SOdBR Sony/BR-Klassik
    Karajan BPO Warner
    Klemperer PO Warner
    Bernstein NYPO DG
    Noseda/Butt LSO
    Kubelík WPO Warner
    Gergiev WPO
    Gergiev Mariinsky
    Mravinsky LgPO DG Stereo

    Spare standouts:

    1: Maazel WPO, Abbado CSO, Ormandy PhO RCA, Rozhdestvensky Moscow
    2: Svetlanov USSR Melodiya, Abbado CSO
    3: Abbado CSO, Maazel WPO
    4: Barbirolli Hallé, Slovak CzPO, Svetlanov USSR Tokyo, Markevitch LSO, Abbado CSO
    5: Fedoseyev Moscow, Gatti RPO, Mravinsky LgPO DG, Jansons SOdBR BR-Klassik, Kempen RCO
    6: Muti PO, Svetlanov USSR Tokyo, Mravinsky LgPO Erato, Bychkov RCO Decca, Markevitch LSO, Celibidache MPO

    Great mono recordings that I own and recommend:

    Karajan WSO (4), Karajan PO (5), Kubelík WPO Salzburg (6)

    The favourite recordings that spring to my mind first:

    Karajan BPO Warner
    Klemperer PO Warner
    Noseda/Butt LSO
    Bernstein NYPO Sony







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  7. #111
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    I find 4, 5, 6 Karajan with VPO pretty good.
    Also whole cycle Karajan with BPO.
    I am very fond of 6th Solti/CSO, faster tempo but also a good performance.

  8. #112
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    For #6 - Reiner/CSO - Best I've ever heard...phenomenal prrformance...great solo playing.....wonderful excitement....as always, Reiner gets the drama and flow just right....the carnivorous CSO is just straining at the bit to cut loose with full force...Reiner holds them back until just the right moments , then lets it rip full force...it's awesome.

  9. #113
    Senior Member Allegro Con Brio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Granate View Post

    Complete Cycles: Final challenge

    Markevitch LSO
    Jurowski LPO
    Bernstein NYPO
    Ormandy PhO RCA
    Abbado CSO
    Maazel WPO
    Rozhdestvensky Moscow Melodiya
    Svetlanov USSR Melodiya
    I take it, then, that you are not a fan of the Pletnev cycle? I should qualify that I'm no Tchaikovsky fan and I don't know very many recordings of his symphonies, but I've consistently enjoyed the fiery playing and passion of those performances. Then, again, it's an imprint, so...
    "If we understood the world, we would realize that there is a logic of harmony underlying its manifold apparent dissonances." - Jean Sibelius

    "Art, like morality, consists of drawing the line somewhere." - G.K. Chesterton

    "Ceaseless work, analysis, reflection, writing much, endless self-correction, that is my secret." - Johann Sebastian Bach

  10. #114
    Senior Member Joachim Raff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Granate View Post
    This summer I did my Tchaikovsky Symphony challenge (No Manfred yet). I tried to survey all existing recordings and I came up with a shortlist that I should challenge somewhen:

    Complete Cycles: Final challenge

    Markevitch LSO
    Jurowski LPO
    Bernstein NYPO
    Ormandy PhO RCA
    Abbado CSO
    Maazel WPO
    Rozhdestvensky Moscow Melodiya
    Svetlanov USSR Melodiya

    Partial cycles: Final Challenge

    Fricsay Andromeda set
    Kempen/Dorati RCO Decca
    Jansons SOdBR Sony/BR-Klassik
    Karajan BPO Warner
    Klemperer PO Warner
    Bernstein NYPO DG
    Noseda/Butt LSO
    Kubelík WPO Warner
    Gergiev WPO
    Gergiev Mariinsky
    Mravinsky LgPO DG Stereo

    Spare standouts:

    1: Maazel WPO, Abbado CSO, Ormandy PhO RCA, Rozhdestvensky Moscow
    2: Svetlanov USSR Melodiya, Abbado CSO
    3: Abbado CSO, Maazel WPO
    4: Barbirolli Hallé, Slovak CzPO, Svetlanov USSR Tokyo, Markevitch LSO, Abbado CSO
    5: Fedoseyev Moscow, Gatti RPO, Mravinsky LgPO DG, Jansons SOdBR BR-Klassik, Kempen RCO
    6: Muti PO, Svetlanov USSR Tokyo, Mravinsky LgPO Erato, Bychkov RCO Decca, Markevitch LSO, Celibidache MPO

    Great mono recordings that I own and recommend:

    Karajan WSO (4), Karajan PO (5), Kubelík WPO Salzburg (6)

    The favourite recordings that spring to my mind first:

    Karajan BPO Warner
    Klemperer PO Warner
    Noseda/Butt LSO
    Bernstein NYPO Sony







    No Guilini? His 6th is regarded as a benchmark recording
    No Mehta? He did a superb cycle and No.3 is the highlight.
    Last edited by Joachim Raff; Oct-21-2020 at 01:15.

  11. #115
    Senior Member CnC Bartok's Avatar
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    And to add to the chorus of "what? No.....?"

    Complete cycles to consider
    Pletnev
    Bychkov
    Litton

    I like all three, the middle one has admittedly taken a while to grow on me....

  12. #116
    Senior Member Granate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joachim Raff View Post
    No Guilini? His 6th is regarded as a benchmark recording
    No Mehta? He did a superb cycle and No.3 is the highlight.
    Your recommendations are certainly above the average level in my book, but they didn't impress me a lot.
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  13. #117
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    For a partial set - 4, 5, 6 - the Monteux/Boston recordings are extremely fine. This is old-school, French conducting serving the music. When the times comes to cut down and keep few recordings to take to the old-folks home, those recordings are going along.

    And two other great recordings from Boston, this time with Munch are 4 and 6. There was something about the BSO 60 years ago - they had an orchestral sound that was perfect for Tchaikovsky. That, and RCA had engineers who loved what they were doing.

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  15. #118
    Senior Member Simplicissimus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbhaub View Post
    For a partial set - 4, 5, 6 - the Monteux/Boston recordings are extremely fine. This is old-school, French conducting serving the music. When the times comes to cut down and keep few recordings to take to the old-folks home, those recordings are going along.

    And two other great recordings from Boston, this time with Munch are 4 and 6. There was something about the BSO 60 years ago - they had an orchestral sound that was perfect for Tchaikovsky. That, and RCA had engineers who loved what they were doing.
    The Monteux/Boston SO for 4, 5, 6 are my first choice, too. In general I am pro-Ozawa, who has always conducted a lot of Tchaikovsky, but he's a little too intense and wild for my taste when it comes to these already passionate works. Monteux's equanimity is perfect for them. Unlike many people who like these, I also like 1, 2, and 3, and for those I have Dorati/LSO on Mercury Living Presence, but I have not listened to many other recordings of these earlier symphonies, only Rostropovich and Gergiev. It might be an imprinting situation, but I prefer Dorati, who's pretty intense but the earlier symphonies don't seem to me as inherently passionate as the later ones, just more dreamily Romantic, so his intensity is to good purpose.

  16. #119
    Junior Member Ned Low's Avatar
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    There are many. I currently have Pletnev for the first three( greatly underrated and my favourite recording of these(ignored!)masterpieces), Marvinsky and Sanderling for the last three. I have others which i haven't listened to yet : Haitink, Karajan, Bernstein, Ormandy, Ashkenazy, Rostropovich.

  17. #120
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    Tchaikovsky 6 Kubelik.jpg
    My first 6th.. With the benefit (?) of that Mercury sound.
    Linear, slender, intense, I still love this.
    I do think the Currentzis is pretty much at the same level. Same virtues. Fascinating, unlikely that his band is the equal of CSO even from the 50s.
    Currentzis Tchaikovsky 6.jpg

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