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  Telarc -
  Liszt: Dante Symphony, Tasso - Botstein
  Liszt: Eine Symphonie zu Dantes Divina Commedia "Dante Symphony", Tasso, Lamento e Trionfo

London Oratory School Schola
London Symphony Orchestra
Leon Botstein (conductor)
Track listing:
  Classical - Orchestral
Recording type:
Recording info:

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Related titles: 2

Reviews: 3

Review by beardawgs May 5, 2005 (8 of 8 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
Yet another terrific recording for Telarc by Polyhymnia made in January 2003 in Watford town hall. The soundstage is broad, dynamics wide and orchestral perspective transparent and natural (in MC). Opening bars representing Gates of Hell are the showcase of naturally sounding brass, with plenty of air producing focused, well rounded and mellow sound. As the piece goes on, same can be said for each and every orchestral group, with the short final chorus and soprano soloist placed well behind, giving the finale appropriate ‘heavenly’ feel.

As the Liszt’s musical representation of Dante’s imagery develops, conductor Botstein concentrates on detail, mostly restraining his interpretation on producing fascinating orchestral colours and allowing plenty of time and space for fantastic LSO players to shade every note and phrase in a different way. That approach, however superficially appealing, didn’t come without a price of losing some of the narrative qualities, and IMO the symphony has lost some of its musical unity. “Tasso, Lamento e Triomfo” treated similarly, with closing brass outbursts in strong textural contrast with opening soft woodwinds and sweet strings.

On a completely personal note, have to say here that I don’t regard Liszt as a great orchestral composer, and my interest in his symphonic output is limited to Dante and Faust symphonies. This performance is satisfactory and married with one of the best naturally sounding surround recordings it is my clear first choice. If we could only get Faust symphony as well from the same forces and in the same venue with Polyhymnia’s miking...

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Review by Luukas July 23, 2015 (3 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
What a wonderful disc! I've heard many recordings of Liszt's "Dante Symphony" but this is simply the best!
1) I guess that this is the only SACD release of the work - or at least the only multi-channel SACD. Anyway, the surround sound is very realistic here: the rears are used only for the reverb. The engineering team - which is here the highly experienced Polyhymnia - has done an impressive work. Sometimes the sound is too deep - the bass side covers the distant side - but mostly the listening experience is refreshing.
2) We cannot wish the better performers for these works: the best orchestra of the world - London Symphony Orchestra - and the charismatic conductor Leon Botstein. The conductor's tempo choices are mostly briskly: for example the total time of the first movement is only 19 minutes! But it doesn't mean that they are hurry: Botstein reaches the movement's horrible atmosphere perfectly.
3) The disc and booklet are packaged in the Strong Jewel Case.
Highly recommended! If you want to experience the ravishing musical journey, this disc is for you.

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Review by lenw June 2, 2004 (1 of 2 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
I listened to this beautifully performed album in stereo - it has a very well defined and realistic soundstage left/right and front/back. This is another outstanding album produced by Telarc - a palpable listening experience.

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Works: 2  

Franz Liszt - Dante Symphony (Eine Symphonie zu Dantes Divina Commedia), S. 109
Franz Liszt - Tasso: Lamento e Trionfo (Symphonic Poem No. 2), S. 96