Un premier mouvement de plus de 24mn peut inquiéter. En réalité, pendant l'introduction orchestrale, on ne ressent que modérément la lenteur, on est captivé par l'ampleur du regard posé sur l'œuvre davantage que sur celle du tempo. Il y a quelque chose d'épanoui tout en étant grand, et, si l'on se souvient de ce que Giulini faisait dans les concertos pour piano avec Arrau, on se dit que le caractère du soliste est déjà présent à l'orchestre avant qu'il intervienne. C'est dire l'entente entre les deux musiciens. Le Symphonique de Chicago, par sa puissance, contribue sans doute à l'immensité du climat. Pour revenir à la lenteur, c'est ensuite qu'on s'en aperçoit davantage.
Perlman, qui était dans ses meilleures années à l'époque (il avait 31 ans en 1976), avait un jeu épanoui et pour ainsi dire optimiste, bien en accord avec l'époque où les baby boomers avaient changé la société, une sonorité pleine et brillante (au sens de luisante comme au sens de glorieuse). Par la suite, sa gloire a un peu pâli pour la critique, qui trouvait son discours trop simple, son jeu trop parfait (il ne l'est d'ailleurs pas resté), son ampleur trop unidimensionnelle; les sonates de Beethoven avec Ashkenazy sont moins bien considérées qu'au temps où elles étaient la référence absolue.
L'adagio est sans doute moins passionnant que l'allegro non troppo. Assez lent aussi, il n'a pas toute l'intériorité d'Oistrakh-Klemperer-Orchestre National de la RTF.Lire la suite ›
A la publication de cet enregistrement, on nous avait annoncé un événement musical d’importance. L’affiche a tout pour y pourvoir, mais il faut bien reconnaître avec le recul qu’il y a quelque tromperie sur la marchandise. Le parti pris de Giulini d’un lyrisme serein et placide ôte tout nerf à cette musique. C’est comme si la dimension rythmique de Brahms était occultée. Le premier mouvement est en soi devenu un Adagio, dont les effets rythmiques d’hémiole sont émoussés. Le mouvement lent est lu dans une indifférence froide (le solo de hautbois est raide) et le finale manque d’esprit. Perlman, toujours aussi surdoué, ne met pas son talent au service de l’œuvre. Favorisant une intonation toujours trop haute, il se trouve enchâssé par Giulini, au point de retirer toute fougue aux traits virtuoses, ramenés à quelque étude de Conservatoire. A côté du style impérial d’Oistrakh, de la sensibilité d’un Grumiaux, Perlman nous devait un remake… ce qui fut chose faite.
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19 internautes sur 20 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
A personal favourite.30 juin 2003
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There is no doubt that this is a slower version of the Brahms violin concerto than many - the first movement stretches to some 24 minutes. But what Perlman has given to this recording is such expression and emotion that I for one cannot help but love this recording. Certainly, despite having listened to many pieces of music through the years, I still have not met another that is so beautiful as this interpretation of the second movement. Of course, the Heifetz recording is without question fantastic, and ideally don't miss that either, but I still know many who feel this is the definitive version.
24 internautes sur 27 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Brahmsian Through and Through10 mai 2005
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If anyone - and I doubt they can still get away with it - wishes to claim that Eugene Ormandy had a "one size fits all" method of conducting, I entreat them to find a more Brahmsian, more Germanic, rendering of the third B's violin concerto than this recording. Eugene Ormandy's treatment of its opening phrases is at once so disciplined yet pliant - with the setup of the same sense of majestic forbearance and layered tonality he brings to his recordings of Brahms' symphonies. The tenuous overlapping of the strings with the winds alone is a textbook example of instrumental balance. Listeners can clearly understand why Ormandy was so renowned as a peerless colloborator. And this overwhelming tidal wave of sound comes even before Stern's violin has uttered a note!
Too often, I have heard other maestros conduct a concerto indifferently, on the mistaken assumption that it is, after all, the soloist's opportunity to shine -- not the orchestra's -- least of all, the conductor's. Such a passive approach runs counter to the composer's intentions; especially one such as Brahms, whose musical statements are of symphonic proportions, even in his concertos and sonatas (his First Piano Concerto was originally drafted as a symphony). Ormandy presents Stern with the proverbial "tough act to follow."
Isaac Stern's genius lies in the fact that with the singular voice of his violin he rises to the challenge -- and surpasses it. His violin cuts through the orchestra sharp as a stiletto, and never lets up in heightening the sense of drama.
Ormandy's genius lies in the fact that the orchestra's accompaniment never overwhelms Stern's violin, yet also never fades into the background, either; Ormandy's is a sympathetic and holistic approach, fluid in tempo and accommodating in dynamics in providing the perfect counter-balance to Stern's performance.
Stern and Ormandy performed and recorded many great concerti together while both were with Columbia: Tchaikovsky, Sibelius, Mendelssohn, both of Prokofieff's. Stern always had the highest praise for Ormandy's uncanny ability to anticipate a solist's nuances. "Gene becomes an extension of your own phrasing and music making," Stern said in 1979. "It's almost as if he were taking part in your bowing as you play, because subtleties in pressure and phrasing -- if you're playing well you do them spontaneously -- he responds to instantly, even a millisecond ahead of time.
"I've often said," he joked, "that if you were going to catch cold and sneeze next week, Ormandy would already be there with a handkerchief -- you didn't know it was going to happen, but he did." Nowhere is this seamless melding of musical minds so apparent between the two than on this landmark performance.
Of all the recordings I've heard of this concerto, none can match Stern's and Ormandy's sense of tension-and-release, which is sustained from the introduction through the finale . It is, by far, the most intellectual performance I've heard -- yet so sanguine, so melodic. There is nothing sloppy or extraneous in Stern's playing: It is pure logic, an exacting rendition in which Stern is in command of every note. Like Heifetz' recording with Fritz Reiner and the Chicago Symphony (1958), this recording is very up-tempo. Yet, unlike Heifetz -- who sometimes dashes through a passage so quickly that he glosses over notes -- every note is endowed with purpose and intent.
The finale is breathtakingly bold, without ever being brash. It's one of the best examples of sustained and controlled passion I've heard on records -- akin to God holding a force of nature in his bare hands, unleashing it at the peak of its potency.
Both Stern and Ormandy thus have produced a musical document that speaks profoundly towards the respect and awe both men had before Brahms' oeuvre: I cannot tell the difference between Stern's approach towards the work and Ormandy's. Both musicians seem to be channeling the weighty and commanding German composer, but without getting bogged down in stale, scholarly, interpretation. Their passion for Brahms comes through with a clarity one usually associates with the iconoclastic composers, such as Mahler or Satie.
Recorded in 1959, this recording is one of the earliest stereophonic recordings in either Stern's or Ormandy's career. On the compact disc, though, you can't tell: The microphones catch every nuance every raspy bass and 'cello string, the ring of the brass, the rush of the wind as its passes through the flutes and the full range of Isaac Stern's virtuosic expression on his very dolce Guarnerius del Gesu.
This is a recording for the ages: It entertains, thrills and inspires. As for the Double Concerto, it deserves equally high marks: The communication between Leonard Rose, Isaac Stern, Eugene Ormandy and the orchestra players is truly amazing, and this is the best recording I've heard of it, even topping Toscanini's recording with Frank Miller and Mischa Mischakoff.
14 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Fierce energy, but...26 avril 2006
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I am not entirely satisfied with these performances. In fact, I don't understand what the other reviewers write about, obviously I am on another planet. The playing at this Ormandy/Stern/Rose is as if the life of conductor, soloists and orchestra were at stake; it is performances of fierce energy. I doubt you will find a Stern/Ormandy-performance sounding indifferent, oh no. Still I am not so happy with the result of this Brahms. It has very much the feeling of a live concerto, in which the band is carried away by the music, missing the structure. The performance is always at peak. What I miss is anticipation, foreboding, build up, contrasts... Some times less is more... Well, this is certainly a matter of taste. These performances were events, no doubt about that.
I got some recordings of these concertos. Shaham/Wang/Abbado, Szeryng/Starker/Haitink, Fournier/Oistrakh/Galliera, and of op. 77 alone I have even more versions, Oistrakh/Klemperer (grand and beautiful) and Heifetz, with both Reiner (forward drive, very good shape of the work and great playing) and Koussivetsky (great range of moods). Last but not least, the op. 102 with Mordkovitch/Wallfisch/Jarvi.
If I should have the two concertos on one single CD, I would go for the Szeryng/Starker/Haitink - amazon-search: B00004Z1QL - because it stirs my appetite for more, it has a certain grandour, it is something of a happy celebration; and in spite of quite slow tempos, it has anticipation, foreboding, build up, as Brahms intended; he shaped his concertos as symphonies with obligato soloists. It never fails to put me in a good mood. And it is very cheap. The only problem is that it is missing quite a bit in passion.
If you want state-of-the-art-sound and can tolerate to buy the two concertos separately (you should tolerate that), I recommend Mullova/Abbado live in Japan for the op. 77 and Mordkovitch/Wallfisch/Jarvi for the op. 102. Those performances are the best I have heard to date, considered the wonderful sound, the Mordkovitch/Wallfisch/Jarvi goes straight to the top, and Mullova/Abbado is nothing less than a must-have. Op. 77 Mullova/Abbado live in Japan, more recommended than anything else: Johannes Brahms: Violin Concerto Op. 102 (and Bruch's popular 1st) Mordkovitch/Wallfisch/Jarvi, is good, but not as passionate as the Mullova on op. 77. Yet worth a try: Bruch: Violin Concerto, Op. 102; Brahms: Violin Concerto, Op. 26
16 internautes sur 19 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Brilliant Brahms12 janvier 2003
Michael Brad Richman
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In the 1950s and 60s, CBS/Columbia (now Sony Classical) had the great fortune to have three of America's best orchestras and their conductors on their recording roster -- Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic, Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra, and George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra. Nearly a half-century later, only Leonard Bernstein remains a name that even the non-classical music world knows. But in the world of the compact disc, this is a wonderful thing, because while Leonard Bernstein analog stereo recordings sell at mid-price, classic performances by Ormandy and Szell are regulated to the budget line. Well, my friends there is justice in the world because the vast majority of these "budget line" recordings are not only amazing, but some are still considered definitive more than 40 years later! One such definitive performance is this Ormandy recording of Brahms' Violin Concerto with Isaac Stern. Some felt (wrongly in my opinion) that Stern did not have the virtuosity of a Heifitz or a Menuhin, but Stern always played with such wonderful emotion and phrasing that it made up for any other supposed shortcomings. This recording is a classic example of Stern's style and with an outstanding performance of the Double Concerto tossed in as well, it becomes an essential disc. Never did something of such high quality come at such a small price. Enjoy!
9 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
The Best20 juin 2007
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There are a number of great recordings of this concerto. Among them are ones I have personally listened to over a long period of time, such as EMI's Milstein/Fistoulari/PO, the great Klemperer/National French Radio Orchestra/Oistrakh -- and, friends, that is a very good one indeed! -- on EMI, and, cutting the list short, this one, the Giulini/PO/Perlman performance. Just recently I heard a glorious local performance of this concerto in my hometown with Midori and the Jacksonville Symphony. But these cds are my favorites culled from many over the years. The tossup is between the Klemperer and the Giulini, but the one I listen to most is the sheer beauty and lyricism of the Giulini/Perlman performance. It is very romantic, has the big sound, and nobody exceeds the Chicago Symphony, Carlo Maria Giulini, and Perlman in presenting this concerto.
And let me say a word about this concerto. It is in essence romantic music. Just say "beautiful." Like the Dvorak Cello concerto, how does one do it without it sounding like it is? Romantic! Big! Sonorous! Lush! And why do it if it cannot be performed in the mood and spirit with which the music was intended? Well, nobody projects this kind of music better than this performance by Giulini, the CSO, and Perlman. I feel sorry for all the people reviewing this ahead of me who do not like this performance. I have been listening to Brahms over 50 years, and no one does this better than Carlo Maria Giulini, the CSO, and Perlmann. It shows music is more than just playing the notes or running the tempos. Music is for people. And this performance is sensational. It lets the romanticism engrained be released and rule every part of the concert. Go listen to it again, and hear it for a change. Fall in love with music again. Get this disc and be glad you did. It will become your favorite.
Yes, there are other great performances. I have mentioned just two others. But one will not find a better performance than this for the intention and type of music that is composed. Get it. Be glad you can. It is a smashing rendition of this music.