Magazine article Gramophone

Beethoven: Symphony No 9, Op 125

Magazine article Gramophone

Beethoven: Symphony No 9, Op 125

Article excerpt

Beethoven Symphony No 9, Op 125

Erin Wall sop Kendall Gladen mez William Burden ten Nathan Berg bass-bar San Francisco Symphony Chorus and Orchestra / Michael Tilson Thomas SFS Media [F][Do]. SFS0055 (7T * DDD)

Recorded live at Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco, June 27-30,2012

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

MTT conducts the Ninth live in San Francisco Mahler has been the mainstay of the San Francisco Symphony's releases on its own label and this performance of Beethoven's Ninth is conceived on a similarly grand scale. It is what you might call a 'traditional' interpretation, making no nods to historically informed practice in terms of pace or textural lightening, but that is by no means a negative factor in itself.

It was recorded last year during concerts at San Francisco's Davies Symphony Hall, and the first movement makes an impact through its force, well-placed accents and sinew. It does not always have the clarity and lucidly defined orchestral sonorities that might place it above any number of other recordings of the Choral, and Michael Tilson Thomas lets a certain amount of portentous over-egging creep into the final bars. …

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