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Scriabin: Symphonies Nos 1 & 2

  • Catalogue Number LSO0770

    James Mallinson producer
    Classic Sound Ltd engineering, editing, mixing & mastering

    Recorded live in DSD 128fs, at the Barbican, London
    Symphony No 1 recorded
    Symphony No 2 recorded

    FORMAT - SACD Hybrid

    Layer 1: SACD audio - 2.0 stereo + 5.1 surround mixes
    Layer 2: CD audio - 16bit 44.1kHz

    2 disc jewel case with clear tray
    Notes in English, French and German

  • ***** ‘Music like a drug…captured on two CDs of overwhelming sound…an indulgence of sound – if music is a drug that goes beyond Wagner then it has to be this’ Neue Presse

    **** ‘Gergiev manages the ascent and descent between the individual movements very well and they are full of tension. The LSO is at its best and makes very colourful and intense sounds. Particularly well done is the sensual, impressionistic third movement’ Pizzicato

    **** ‘Gergiev goes for atmosphere, and delivers engaging and stimulating readings. The London Symphony Orchestra is on top form throughout, with the strings producing a weighty, dark tone and the woodwind solos a particular delight. Chorus and soloists also make impressive contributions to the First Symphony's finale. The SACD sound quality is excellent…showing the orchestra off to its full potential’ Classical Ear

    ‘There is no denying Valery Gergiev’s commitment to the music, and if you have the matching coupling of Scriabin symphonies 3 and 4, you need not hesitate’ Classical CD Choice

    ‘He (Gergiev) and the orchestra become one organic unit with an inner logic that this indeed exalted, passionate music demands. A wonderful new issue I’ve enjoyed tremendously’ The Whole Note

    ‘(Gergiev) turns them into masterpieces… it sounds quite old fashioned with other conductors, but Gergiev adds this sense of flight that is very Scriabin-esque that looks to the future, and so it becomes wonderful… there’s a great inner sense of freedom with this music that Gergiev manages to create’ BBC Radio 3

    (Second Symphony) ‘Fine playing by the members of the LSO, including ardent violin solos, paired with avian twittering of the flute in the third movement’ Washington Post

    ‘Gergiev gets it right; even more impressive is the quality of this DSD recording, subtly engineered by James Mallinson and Classic Sound. The finely calibrated playing of the LSO is a joy to hear; they sound so idiomatic too. Gergiev is steady but never dull; he also finds warmth and suppleness in the music.. Even more striking is the palpable sense of destination, of impending apotheosis, of a musical and emotional vortex that’s impossible to escape. Simon Halsey’s ideally distant singers sound genuinely ecstatic. The earth certainly moved for me, and I daresay it will for you, too…’ Musicweb International

    Concert Reviews

    **** ‘These were fine, controlled performances, correctly free in style but never rambling or diffuse, and wonderfully well-played by a full-strength LSO. In both quality and quantity, the sound – orchestral and choral – was terrific.’ The Arts Desk (Symphony No 1)

    **** ‘Gergiev was in his element, firing up the musicians in the boisterous outer movements and stressing elegance in the slow centrepiece.’ Financial Times (Symphony No 2)

    Reviews for LSO0771 Scriabin Symphonies Nos 3 & 4

    ***** Performance **** Sonics

    ‘The thrill of a live performance comes over with more immediacy with Gergiev and the LSO… some deliciously seductive playing from the LSO.’
    BBC Radio 3 CD Review

    ***** ‘Gergiev and the London Symphony Orchestra deliver the music with rhythmic precision and focused tone colours to bring across Scriabin’s kaleidoscopic sound world with brilliance. The engineering is superb on this hybrid SACD, and the acoustics of London’s Barbican add wonderful dimensions to the orchestra’s lush and vibrant sound.’

£5.99 £9.99

Valery Gergiev
London Symphony Orchestra

Valery Gergiev and the London Symphony Orchestra bring to a close their revelatory Scriabin cycle with the release of Symphonies 1 & 2.

Epic in scope, Scriabin’s highly original First Symphony was composed at the turn of the twentieth century. The ambitious work consists of six movements, the last of which features a chorus and two vocal soloists, beautifully sung in this recording by Ekaterina Sergeeva, Alexander Timchenko and the London Symphony Chorus. In the monumental choral finale, which brings the symphony to a rousing conclusion, Scriabin uses a text of his own composition to praise the supreme power of art: ‘Come, all peoples of the world, Let us sing the praises of Art! Glory to Art, Glory forever!’ 

Premiered two years after Symphony No 1, the Second Symphony contains echoes of Strauss, Tchaikovsky and Wagner, alongside Scriabin’s deeply personal sound. While relatively more restrained in style than the composer's other symphonic output, over the course of its five movements there are sweeping climaxes, swirling colours and passages of majestic intensity, with a brooding Andante opening continuing without pause into a fervent second movement.

A mezzo-soprano born in St Petersburg, Ekaterina Sergeeva has been a soloist with the Mariinsky Academy of Young Singers since 2005, after graduating from the St Petersburg Conservatory. In 2009 Ekaterina sang the part of Elektra’s Trainbearer, which she recorded with Valery Gergiev and the London Symphony Orchestra for LSO LiveHer accolades include prizes at both the 2008 International Zara Dolukhanova Amber Nightingale Competition and 2006 International Lisitsian Competition, as well as a Diploma for best performance of a contemporary work from the 2006 International Rimsky-Korsakov Competition.

Tenor Alexander Timchenko was born in Leningrad and graduated from the Glinka Choral School of the St Petersburg State Academic Capella in 1993, continuing his studies at the St Petersburg Conservatory. He performed the role of Shepherd in Stravinsky Oedipus rex with Valery Gergiev and the LSO in 2012, and has also featured on recordings including Stravinsky Les Noces with the Mariinsky Orchestra & Chorus, conducted by Valery Gergiev, 2010.

Composer   Scriabin
Conductor   Valery Gergiev
Choral Director   Simon Halsey
Performers   London Symphony Chorus
London Symphony Orchestra
Soloists   Ekaterina Sergeeva
Alexander Timchenko
Track list
Disc 1
1. Symphony No 1 in E Major, Op 26: I. Lento
2. Symphony No 1 in E Major, Op 26: II. Allegro dramatico
3. Symphony No 1 in E Major, Op 26: III. Lento
4. Symphony No 1 in E Major, Op 26: IV. Vivace
5. Symphony No 1 in E Major, Op 26: V. Allegro
6. Symphony No 1 in E Major, Op 26: VI. Andante

Disc 2
1. Symphony No 2 in C Minor, Op 29: I. Andante
2. Symphony No 2 in C Minor, Op 29: II. Allegro
3. Symphony No 2 in C Minor, Op 29: III. Andante
4. Symphony No 2 in C Minor, Op 29: IV. Tempestoso
5. Symphony No 2 in C Minor, Op 29: V. Maestoso

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