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Schubert, F.: Overtures (Complete), Vol. 2 (Prague Sinfonia, Benda)

Schubert, F.: Overtures (Complete), Vol. 2 (Prague Sinfonia, Benda)

26 mai 2009

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Amazon.com: 4.3 étoiles sur 5 3 commentaires
12 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Schubert's Overtures on Naxos 3 août 2009
Par Robin Friedman - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: CD
Franz Schubert (1797 - 1828) spent much of his short life in a failed attempt to achieve fame as a composer of operas or other works for the stage. Among other things, Schubert had difficulty getting his larger-scale works produced, difficulty with librettos, and difficulty with composition in a sustained dramatic character. Many of Schubert's overtures have suffered from the same neglect as his theatrical works as a whole. Indeed, several of these works were not performed until years after Schubert's death. This neglect is unfortunate, as the overtures include much music of beauty. Fortunately, Schubert's overtures have been recorded in their entirety on two new Naxos CDs with Christian Benda conducting the Prague Sinfonia. The Prague Sinfonia, founded in 2006 by Vaclav Havel, is an expanded version of the renowned Prague Chamber Orchestra. This performance is by a full-sized orchestra on modern instruments. The performing is large-scale and enthusiastic. It offers an excellent way to hear some unfortunately neglected works. While listening, I also thought these works could be done by a smaller ensemble.

The two volumes are arranged chronologically, with volume 2 consisting of Schubert `s latter efforts in the form. Most of the nine works included on this CD begin with a slow introduction followed by a rousing and lyrical faster section. Many of the overtures include lovely orchestration, particularly in the use of winds and horns.

The most familiar work on this CD to most listeners will be Schubert's overture to Rosamunde, which was often performed as a curtain-raiser to orchestral concerts. There are actually two so-called Rosamunde overtures, both of which are included on this CD. The version most often performed is D. 644, which Schubert originally composed for a stage piece called "The Magic Harp." This work, the lengthiest of Schubert's overtures, has a slow, extended dramatic opening followed by an energetic and varied allegro. It receives a rousing performance from Benda and the Prague Sinfonia.

The "Magic Harp" overture was Schubert's second thought for Rosamunde. He had earlier used his overture from his rarely-heard opera "Alfonso and Estrella", D. 732, as the introduction to the play. The "Alfonso and Estrella" overture is more compact and worth hearing in its own right.

For a composer of his time, Schubert was unusual in composing free-standing overtures (not attached to a specific dramatic work). Schubert's two free-standing "Overtures in the Italian Style", in D major, D. 590 and in C major, D. 591 are, after The Magic Harp, the most frequently performed of his overtures. These are charming works written in 1817 when Rossini's operas were popular in Vienna. One of these overtures was performed in 1818 and earned Schubert rare popular acclaim.

The rarely-heard overture in E minor, D. 648, may, after The Magic Harp be Schubert's finest effort in this form. This work as composed in 1819 as a free-standing piece. It received a public performance in 1821. This is a short, dramatic and tragic work. It dispenses with the slow introduction, and includes, after the austere opening, a lyrical second theme and a whirlwind close.

Schubert's final effort in this form was his overture to his failed opera , Fierabras, D. 796. I am unfamiliar with the opera, but it is unfortunate that this overture has been forgotten. Judging from this inspiring overture, the opera was a work of heroic scope.

Other works on this CD include an Overture in D major, D. 556, a short but charming overture to a comedy, "The Twin Brothers", D. 647, and an overture to a potboiler play called "The Conspirators - Domestic Warfare" D. 787.

This CD includes informative program notes on this rare music by Keith Anderson. Lovers of Schubert's music will enjoy these overtures. I found it more effective to hear these works during several listening sessions rather than all at once.

Robin Friedman
4.0 étoiles sur 5 More of Franz Schubert's Overtures 16 août 2013
Par Paul H. May - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: CD Achat vérifié
I now have all of Schubert's works on overtures. This is conducted by the same director as Volume 1. I hope you will enjoy this as much as I have. Franz Schubert is one the great German composers who has written concertos, lieder, overtures and symphonies and the music is very easy listening. I'm sure if you like short pieces of music like this then you won't go wrong in buying this CD.
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Five Stars 10 juillet 2015
Par Jeffrey H. Cohen - Publié sur Amazon.com
Achat vérifié
excellent recording!
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