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It seems to me that a soloist claiming to be a conductor is like a person who had been operated on claiming to be a surgeon. :rolleyes:
Yeah but then most conductors start out as "soloists" anyway, often mediocre ones. Sometimes it seems the rule has been "those who can't play, conduct". :D
blondheim said:
Piano is the one instrument that I actually think could benefit a conductor very much...
Absolutely.

(edit)oh yeah, Shostakovich cycle...the Kondrashin is the one I know best via YT so that it is.
 

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It seems to me that a soloist claiming to be a conductor is like a person who had been operated on claiming to be a surgeon. :rolleyes:
I would prefer to be operated by someone who knows precisely how to play an instrument to someone who only dictates others how to play their instrument and can only wave a pencil in the air vaguely for too much money;)
 

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Regarding Amazon resellers. For out of print items very overpriced, above market. That goes for anything that has high demand and not easily available. Ebay has issues too. Not as blatant as Amazon in my opinion.

My favorites are Kondrashin, Haitink, Rozhdestvensky. Potentially Nelsons. Petrenko, Barshai, Rostropovich very good. I admire Jansons. Solti has a few symphonies here and there.
 

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My Shostakovich Symphony cycle looks something like this:

1. Ormandy / PO
4. Rattle / CBSO
5. Bernstein / NYP
6. Mravinsky / LPO
7. Ashkenazy / SPSO
8. Haitink / RCO
9. Kondrashin / MPO
10. Karajan / BPO
11. Rostropovich / LSO
15. Sanderling / BPO

The above doesn't include his vocal symphonies (2/3/13/14) or #12.
 

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Hi, my first entry in this group. And I know I’m late in this discussion.
As many others I am very fond of the Kondrashin cycle, I have it on mp3 only. I love that raw sound of Soviet brass. To complement it, I’ll suggest the BIS recordings, conducted by Wigglesworth. Especially if you have Sacd equipment. I also have the Barshai box, which for a short while was available for around 25 dollars; look for the Brilliant Classics label.
I also have a few Bernstein, Honeck, Pletnev, P Järvi, Koeman and Kitajenko, some of them as Sacd.
Greetings
Jan, Sweden
 

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Hi, my first entry in this group. And I know I’m late in this discussion.
As many others I am very fond of the Kondrashin cycle, I have it on mp3 only. I love that raw sound of Soviet brass. To complement it, I’ll suggest the BIS recordings, conducted by Wigglesworth. Especially if you have Sacd equipment. I also have the Barshai box, which for a short while was available for around 25 dollars; look for the Brilliant Classics label.
I also have a few Bernstein, Honeck, Pletnev, P Järvi, Koeman and Kitajenko, some of them as Sacd.
Greetings
Jan, Sweden
I can't stand Wigglesworth! The dynamic range of his recordings are terrible. Some of the worst audio quality I've ever heard from BIS. When the reissued his cycle, they should've remixed the recordings. Kondrashin is outstanding, but, if I were you, I'd try and track down the box set (CDs) --- mp3 doesn't do any music justice. Barshai is an excellent cycle, too. So with Kondrashin and Barshai, you have two great cycles --- Kitajenko, too. Of course, those other conductors you mentioned didn't do complete cycles of the symphonies.

I wish Melodiya would get around to remastered/reissuing their Rozhdestvensky cycle. It's fantastic, but the audio quality leaves much to be desired as the strings are recessed and barely there in the mix. Hell, Kondrashin's nails-on-chalkboard performances sound better than Rozhdestvensky's.
 

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Caetani had access to Mravinsky's notated scores (he is the son of Igor Markevitch). I do think several of his Shostakovich symphonies as among the best. But some are a little eccentric (I remember that 7 and 10 were not so good, for example).
I agree 10 a clinker but disagree on 7. It is among my favorites of that work.
 

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I can't stand Wigglesworth! The dynamic range of his recordings are terrible. Some of the worst audio quality I've ever heard from BIS. When the reissued his cycle, they should've remixed the recordings. Kondrashin is outstanding, but, if I were you, I'd try and track down the box set (CDs) --- mp3 doesn't do any music justice. Barshai is an excellent cycle, too. So with Kondrashin and Barshai, you have two great cycles --- Kitajenko, too. Of course, those other conductors you mentioned didn't do complete cycles of the symphonies.

I wish Melodiya would get around to remastered/reissuing their Rozhdestvensky cycle. It's fantastic, but the audio quality leaves much to be desired as the strings are recessed and barely there in the mix. Hell, Kondrashin's nails-on-chalkboard performances sound better than Rozhdestvensky's.
I can't stand Wigglesworth! The dynamic range of his recordings are terrible. Some of the worst audio quality I've ever heard from BIS. When the reissued his cycle, they should've remixed the recordings. Kondrashin is outstanding, but, if I were you, I'd try and track down the box set (CDs) --- mp3 doesn't do any music justice. Barshai is an excellent cycle, too. So with Kondrashin and Barshai, you have two great cycles --- Kitajenko, too. Of course, those other conductors you mentioned didn't do complete cycles of the symphonies.

I wish Melodiya would get around to remastered/reissuing their Rozhdestvensky cycle. It's fantastic, but the audio quality leaves much to be desired as the strings are recessed and barely there in the mix. Hell, Kondrashin's nails-on-chalkboard performances sound better than Rozhdestvensky's.
Well, BIS is famous for never using any compression on their recordings. That is why the dynamics vary so much. Maybe too much…
Btw, I found that I have the Kondrashin cycle not as mp.3 but as flac files. Too many records.
 

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I only came to appreciate DSCH recently after hearing a performance of his 8th on the radio (Rostropovich LSO). I was immediately taken by the Scherzo and decided to look further into his music. Of course I looked for versions of the 8th and at the same time discovered that I really liked the 11th. I decided that to get into Shosty I needed a complete cycle and the Barshai was what I chose.

Recordings of the 8th online led me to an incredible performance (with not very good sound) on BBC Legends of Mravrinsky conducting the Leningrad PO live in London. This also led me to Andre Previn with the LSO and virtually as good but with better sound. How he got the LSO to play the third movement so quickly is beyond me but it's exhilarating. I listened to the Bernstein 7th and it didn't grab me. I am still a Shosty newbie and agree with many who say that rather than a complete cycle, individual performances are the way to go.
 
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