Magazine article Gramophone

Bruckner: Symphony No 5 (1878 Version)

Magazine article Gramophone

Bruckner: Symphony No 5 (1878 Version)

Article excerpt

Symphony No 5 (1878 version)

Tapiola Sinfonietta / Mario Venzago

CPO (F) CP0777 616-2 (60' * DDD)

Turn straight to the Scherzo of Mario Venzago's Fifth for a Landler of considerable charm and subtle clumsiness, albeit on a chamber scale with the 40-something players of the Tapiola Sinfonietta, based in the Finnish city of Espoo: they pull on the country clogs of Mahler's childhood Landler-memories, not the more-or-less polished army boots of traditional performances.

Elsewhere, specifically wherever Adagio is marked, disorientation sets in: you'd be forgiven for thinking you'd bought an LP and set the turntable to 45, or even 78. Remember Robert Simpson's oft-quoted remark that Bruckner's music not only demands patience but embodies it? Venzago has no truck with that. Even so, the resemblance to Neeme Jarvi's dash though the symphony is skin-deep. In the Adagio proper, the playing is consciously rustic to often touching effect; in the double fugue of the finale, I think they're just trying to keep up as Venzago hares from chorale post to cadence point like an over-zealous PE instructor. But if you have followed him this far, you'll certainly want to hear his final and most iconoclastic assault on the canon. …

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