MAX BRUCH (1838-1920): Symphonies No. 1 in E Flat (First recording of original five-movement version), Op. 28, No. 2 in F Minor, Op. 36 and No. 3 in E, Op. 51, Prelude, Funeral March and Entr’acte from the Opera Hermione, Op. 40, Overture from the Opera Loreley, Op. 16, Prelude to the Oratorio Odysseus, Op. 41.
Catalogue Number: 07W005
Reference: 555 252-2
Description: The three symphonies were composed between 1868 and 1882 and originally intended as a series of works forming a trilogy. However, Max Bruch set aside the third part in order to focus on dramatic and choral symphonic projects. He first wanted to write his second opera, Hermione after The Winter’s Tale by William Shakespeare, and Odysseus, his first secular oratorio. As things turned out, the spectacular long-term success of these musical pictures from antiquity meant that his original symphonic project was relegated to the back burner. However, once we experience the three sister works in their originally planned context, as the present new production enables us to do, the tide turns in their favor. The revealing path from the heroic idea underlying the first symphony, which, by the way, we are presenting for the first time in its original five-movement version (a seven-minute Intermezzo, performed only twice in 1868, comes second here, before the scherzo), through the tragic stance of the second symphony, to the “Rhine idyll” of the third symphony leads us to the realization that this triad deserves much more credit than its meager performance figures would make us believe. 2 CDs. Bamberg Symphony; Robert Trevino.