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GRIEG, E.: Orchestral Music, Vol. 3 - Symphony in C minor / Old Norwegian Romance with Variations (Malmo Symphony, Engeset)

Composer(s):Grieg, Edvard
Artist(s) Engeset, Bjarte, Conductor • Malmo Symphony Orchestra
Period(s) Romantic
Genre Classical Music
Category Orchestral
Catalogue 8.557991
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
Download and Stream

Few symphonies can have been the subject of so many reservations as the 20-year-old Grieg’s ‘forbidden’ Symphony in C minor of which the composer himself wrote, on the score, ‘must never be performed’. Though hardly typical of Grieg, with its links to Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Schumann and the Danish composer Niels Gade, this is a remarkably assured work filled with positive, youthful energy, and many fresh musical ideas. The popular orchestral suite Three Orchestral Pieces from ‘Sigurd Jorsalfar’, Op. 56, derived from the incidental music of the same name, was often taken by Grieg on his concert tours abroad. The concluding Homage March, almost a symphonic poem in itself, develops into a brilliant, almost barbaric festive march.


Review By Penguin Guide,January 2009

Bjarte Engeset makes an excellent case for the Grieg Symphony—not one of his most characteristic works, but it has many pleasing qualities. Engeset injects plenty of vigour into his performance, making it seem more dramatic than usual. The Variations are superbly done, with plenty of the fresh charm and detail brought out. No complaints about the Sigurd Jorsalfar items, which are as enjoyable as ever, with the Intermezzo wonderfully atmospheric. Good, well-balanced sound.

Review By Kenneth Page,Limelight Magazine,November 2007

The sound here is rich in quality, carrying a persistent, subtle and not entirely unattractive gloominess. Not by accident, you suspect. The sparkle you expect of Grieg si there, but with a kind of burnish to dull its sharpness. As a music lover, you don’t expect instant gratification, and if you’re prepared to reserve judgment, then take the time and make up your own mind. This is a classy performance.

Review By Giv Cornfield, Ph.D.,The New Recordings, Cliffs Classics,July 2007

Although Grieg expressly forbade the performance of this, his only symphony, it is a nicely-wrought and accessible work. It brings to mind the immensely popular Symphony in C Major that Bizet submitted as his entry for the Prix de Rome. Conductor Engeset provides exhaustive notes about the background for Grieg's supression of the work. A full page in the notes is devoted to the lovely painting on the cover. Performances of this and the two other works are lively and 'native' in spirit.

Review By David Denton, Naxos,June 2007

On the title page of the C minor symphony Edvard Grieg wrote the word 'Forbidden' his express wish being that the work should never be published or performed. Fortunately in 1980 a Russian conductor, Vitaly Katayev, obtained a photocopy of the manuscript and both performed in concert and recorded the work. Though it was to overturn the composer's instruction, there was then a rush to have an authentic Norwegian performance, Bergen going the whole way by organizing a television relay of the work throughout Europe. It has since been heard many times in the concert hall and made Grieg's reservations difficult to understand. It was, however, from his twentieth year, and in the years that followed he probably felt it would not further his cause as a



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