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Symphony No. 3 Chaconne

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Performer: Sinaisky; Malmö Symphony Orchestra
  • Composer: Schmidt Franz
  • Audio CD (July 27 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Ncl
  • ASIN: B003NA7GA6
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #103,667 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Franz Schmidt' Third Symphony was composed in 1927-28, dedicated to and premiered by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, winning a first prize from the Columbia Graphophone Company of New York for the best symphony in the spirit of Schubert' 'Unfinished' S

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Format: Audio CD
Franz Schmidt est né en 1874 à Presbourg (Bratislava), Empire austro-hongrois (Slovaquie). Il étudia le piano avec Theodor Leschetizky (1830-1915), puis entra au Conservatoire de Vienne, où il eut comme professeurs Anton Bruckner (1824-1896), Robert Fuchs (1847-1927) et Ferdinand Hellmesberger (1863-1940), et dont il sortit diplômé en 1896. Professeur de piano à la Musikakademie de Vienne dès 1914, il en devint Directeur en 1925, puis Recteur de 1927 à 1937. Il est mort en 1939 à Perchtolsdorf, près de Vienne, Allemagne (Autriche). Parmi ses oeuvres majeures, on peut noter deux Quatuors à cordes, un Quintette pour piano pour la main gauche et quatuor à cordes, un Quintette pour clarinette, violon, alto, violoncelle et piano pour la main gauche, quatre Symphonies, ainsi que l'Oratorio "Le Livre aux sept sceaux".
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa1138984) out of 5 stars 3 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c4150e4) out of 5 stars "The greatest historically uninevitable composer since Bach" April 2 2014
By Jeffery A. Triggs - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I disagree with the contention that this symphony is not "top notch material". Though the 4th is usually regarded as Schmidt's masterpiece, many people, including Harold Truscott (see http://www.amazon.com/The-Music-Franz-Schmidt-Orchestral/dp/0907689124/) consider the 3rd to be Schmidt's most genial symphony. It was entered in the Columbia Schubert competition in 1928, but Schmidt had actually begun work on it before he knew about the contest. Unaccountably in my opinion, it lost out to a relatively mediocre symphony, Kurt Atterberg's 6th. Supposedly the judges, who included Alexander Glazunov, did not want to give first prize to an Austrian and so chose the Swede and left Schmidt with first prize in the Austrian section. A work in the traditional four movements, it is only superficially in a "sunny" Schubertian spirit - as several critics have noted, a vein of "darker knowledge" runs through the work, though it is not the deep tragedy of the 4th symphony written after the premature death of Schmidt's only daughter. The 3rd is distinguished by its rich, chromatic harmonies, especially in the eerily ecstatic slow movement. While never abandoning traditional tonality, Schmidt takes it to the very boundaries, while making the striking but subtle dissonances palatable to the ear through silky orchestration. I have heard an interesting transcription of the slow movement for piano which comes across as much more harshly dissonant than the orchestral version. The 3rd Symphony represents the mature Schmidt in full mastery of his resources before the tragedy of his later years had set in. As such it is the spiritual companion of the gorgeous, "left hand" Piano Quintet in G major written about the same time on a commission from Paul Wittgenstein.

The Chaconne was originally written for organ and the version here was tastefully orchestrated by Schmidt himself. It is a rare work of beautiful sonorities well captured by Sinaisky and the Malmö Symphony. Sinaisky's cycle of all the symphonies is beautifully played and recorded, and I think will stand as the standard recording of these works for years to come. Hopefully they will also help to make more people familiar with this wonderful composer whose works deserve to be much better known and more frequently performed. I believe Robin Holloway once called Franz Schmidt the "greatest historically uninevitable composer since Bach", and as so often he was pretty much on the mark.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9c62af00) out of 5 stars Finest available recording of an enigmatic masterpiece April 4 2015
By Firebrand - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
The Franz Schmidt Third is a work of mystery and reflection, but it takes a sensitive interpreter to bring out this depth. Fortunately, that is what Vassily Sinaisky does in this, one of the best available recordings of the Third. Beautifully played by the Malmo Symphony at a relaxed pace that gives the work plenty of room to breathe, Sinaisky reveals its secrets. It is a sun-dappled journey into a beautiful but unsettling place, melancholy and nostalgia throughout. There is an unmistakable undercurrent of shadow, even beneath seemingly ingratiating passages; the sound of darkness barely restrained (explosive in moments, only to be bottled back up again). Austrian to its core, there are distant echoes of Brahms (the opening motif sounds like a nod to the Brahms Serenade in A), Mahler, Richard Strauss, and Schubert, but in a uniquely individual voice. The somewhat bitterly ironic waltz of the third movement gives a nod to Ravel's La Valse, which itself was ironic commentary.

The Schmidt Third is a reflective lament that rewards the patient listener. It is in its own way as powerful as the overtly dark Schmidt Fourth, if not more so. Those who would view the Third work as merely "sunny and happy" miss out on its substance, and many tight, brisk, rigid performances of this symphony do unfortunately reinforce this "happy music" fallacy. For example, Neeme Jarvi's brisk, polished but superficial account blows past many of the subtleties. But Sinaisky gets it right, and so does the 1980s recording conducted by Ludovit Rajter (a student of Schmidt's) with the Radio Bratislava Symphony on the Opus label. Both take the work at a relaxed pace. The Rajter recording has dry, thin sound and a slightly more acerbic texture. The interpretation Sinaisky's is broader, warmer, more patient and relaxed, with better orchestral play and better sound.
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9cc95084) out of 5 stars Chaconne is the winner here Sept. 22 2010
By P. Weber - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The orchestra plays beautifully and the recorded sound is very good. Too bad the symphony isn't top notch material. This is very busy music, not as melodic as other Schmidt symphonies, nor as emotionally involving. But it does have some pleasant moments here and there. The real winner here is Chaconne with its organ like sonorities. It's a more interesting and moving work than the symphony. I look forward to symphony 4 next, considered by some as Schmidt's masterpiece.

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