Rachmaninov: Symphony No 3

  • Catalogue Number LSO0779
    UPC 822231177920

    James Mallinson producer
    Classic Sound Ltd recording, editing and mastering facilities
    Jonathan Stokes for Classic Sound Ltd balance engineer,
    audio editor, mixing & mastering engineer
    Neil Hutchinson for Classic Sound Ltd recording engineer

    Recorded live in DSD 128fs at the Barbican, November 2014

    1SACD Hybrid
    2.0 stereo and 5.1 multi-channel audio streams

    Clear jewel case with clear tray
    20-page booklet

    Booklet notes in English / en français / auf Deutsch

  • ***** Performance ***** Recording ‘Valery Gergiev and the LSO capture the score’s expressive beauty, and also the sense of its transience as chill winter encroaches…Truly magical.’ BBC Music Magazine

    **** ‘Fine performances… [Gergiev’s] readings have great zest and vitality.’ Pizzicato

    'A five star performance from Gergiev and the London Symphony Orchestra.’ Classic FM Full Works Concert

    ‘This spacious, beautifully detailed account of Rachmaninov’s Third Symphony and the Balakirev were recorded live during Gergiev’s Rachmaninov retrospective in November last year. The band is on its best form, the playing imbued with affection and nostalgia as well as verve and drive.’ The Sunday Times

    ‘You could hear Valery Gergiev’s commitment as he conducted the London Symphony Orchestra in that fiery performance (Rachmaninov Symphony No 3).’ BBC Radio 3 CD Review

    ‘Valery Gergiev’s view is dark and stormy… Some will admire the passionate Mahlerian outburst at the heart of his first movement, relishing the extreme contrasts of tempo and mood in the tripartite second…’ Gramophone

    ‘LSO Live’s team are well versed in drawing rich sound from the Barbican’s truculent acoustics and the results here are largely superb… The LSO strings soar with as honeyed a tone as you could wish for and Maxwell Spiers’ cor anglais solo is eloquently phrased... This LSO Live release is most welcome...Gergiev is a master at conjuring brooding Russian tone and the musical pictures evoked here (Balakirev Russia) are vivid.’ Beckmesser’s Quill

    *** ‘Bringing some of that native flare to this new recording, Gergiev and the LSO make a good case for Rachmaninov’s capricious Third Symphony and Balakirev’s more feral celebration of his homeland.’ Sinfini

    ‘Magnificently delivered by the LSO… Gergiev’s deeply serious and individual reading of this symphony has much to commend it… An excellent account of Balakirev’s symphonic poem ‘Russia’ making its first appearance in high resolution audio. Gergiev’s performance is vividly characterised and the LSO deliver a sprightly and idiomatic performance of this engaging and colourful piece.’ CD Choice

    'Gergiev gets great clarity and elegance out of the LSO's low brasses and winds, and the engineers from the orchestra's own LSO Live label are with him every step of the way… Gergiev delivers a totally infectious quality. It's a fine way of bringing down the curtain on a recommended Rachmaninov recording.’ Allmusic.com

    ‘The combination of the two works is attractive… Gergiev’s interpretation of the Third Symphony is dark and brooding, heavy with nostalgia…’ Klassik

    ‘Gergiev and the LSO bring out the music’s romance and regret… I am certainly pleased to have this one from Gergiev, notable for its spaciousness, poise and integrity.’ Classic Source

    ‘The LSO is at its radiant best under Gergiev's dynamic direction… This new Rachmaninov disk is excellent.’ Classical CD Review

    ‘The Russian maestro Valery Gergiev is a talented and controversial volcano. This live CD shows his good side, with a splendid reading of Rachmaninov Symphony 3.’ Valor.com

    ‘One can only welcome the live performance by Valery Gergiev.’ Musikzen

    Concert reviews

    ‘Under Gergiev’s burning gaze, the LSO carved out a searing Rachmaninov Third Symphony that almost left scorch marks on the Barbican Hall’s wood panelling.’ Bach Track

    ‘Gergiev is at his best in Russian repertoire and chose to open the programme with Russia, Balakirev’s second “Overture on three Russian Themes”… Gergiev, a rugged Russian bear himself, ensured Balakirev’s music danced.’ Bach Track

    ‘For the Third Symphony to make its true impact, it needs a reading of great penetration and depth, which is precisely what it obtained on this occasion. This was Gergiev and the LSO at their finest.’ Classical Source


Valery Gergiev, 
London Symphony Orchestra

Following acclaimed LSO Live recordings of Rachmaninov’s Symphony No 2 and Symphonic Dances, Valery Gergiev conducts a scintillating account of the powerfully emotional Third Symphony, framed with a work by one of the Mighty Five; Balakirev’s Russia

Rachmaninov’s third and final symphony was composed nearly 20 years after the composer’s emigration from his homeland. Often considered to be his most overtly Russian symphony, Rachmaninov makes subtle use of a motto theme which appears throughout the work and can be heard in the finale as a variant of the Dies Irae plainchant – a melodic tag used in Rachmaninov’s music as a dark reminder of mortality. 

Russia, the epic symphonic poem, is a reworking of an Overture on Russian Themes, collected during Balakirev’s expedition up through the Volga. It was composed in 1864 and is based on three folksongs – a slow wedding song and two round-dances which are varied, fragmented and combined throughout the piece. 

Composers   Rachmaninov, Balakirev
Conductor   Valery Gergiev
Performers   London Symphony Orchestra

Track list
1. Symphony No 3 I. Lento – Allegro moderato – Allegro
2. Symphony No 3 II. Adagio ma non troppo – Allegro vivace
3. Symphony No 3 III. Allegro – Allegro vivace – Allegro (Tempo primo) – Allegretto – Allegro vivace
4. Russia 

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