Magazine article Czech Music

The Complete Symphonies

Magazine article Czech Music

The Complete Symphonies

Article excerpt

Antonin Dvorak

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

The Complete Symphonies

The Czech Radio Symphony Orchestra, Vladimir Valek. Production: Czech Radio, Daniela Ruzkova. Text: Eng., Ger., French, Czech. Recorded: 2000-2003. Published: 2004. TT: 50:49, 51:41, 74:42, 76:58, 72:27, 38:21. DDD. 6 CD Supraphon SU 3802-2.

All the nine Dvorak symphonies in this recording by the Czech Radio Symphony Orchestra with Vladimir Valek can be rated highly for several reasons. One is the project itself. Supraphon could easily have chosen from the existing recordings of Dvorak symphonies and perhaps added one or two new individual recordings if the quality or interpretation on an old one failed to suit. Instead it decided on one orchestra and one conductor. Apart from the live recordings of the 5th and 7th Symphonies from the Rudolfinum, all were made in the recording studio over a relatively short time from October 2000 to October 2003. As far as power of performance is concerned, they testify to a unified interpretative concept and the very high standard of the radio orchestra at the time. A great deal of credit must also go to the musical directors Milan Puklicky, Jan Malek, Igor Tausinger and Jiri Gemrot, the sound directors Jan Lzicar, Jaroslav Vasicek, Miroslav Mares and the assistants to the sound master Jan Srajer and Vaclav Marsik. In terms of interpretation the first three symphonies are a particular challenge; they are full of the musical ideas with which Dvorak was always brimming, but at this stage in his career he was still too prodigal in the way he presented them. …

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