After having released boxed cd sets dedicated to former chief conductors Willem Mengelberg, Eduard van Beinum, Bernard Haitink and Riccardo Chailly (now only available as part of the RCO Live Radio Legacy, RCO 13006), the Anthology-series is now brought up to date with radio recordings featuring Mariss Jansons. After being chief conductor for eleven seasons, Jansons has resigned for health reasons. The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra's beloved sixth maestro will be succeeded by Daniele Gatti with effect from the 2016/2017 season.
This new release from BR-Klassik brings together the most well-known works of Finnish composer, Jean Sibelius. Included in this disc are Sibelius Symphony No. 2 D Major op. 43, and Finlandia op. 26- Karelia Suite op. 11. The recordings on this album were made during autumn of 2015 in Munich, by The Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks. Conducting the orchestra is Mariss Jansons, who is well-known for his interpretation of Nordic music.
Antonín Dvorák's Stabat Mater, Op. 58, written in the aftermath of the deaths of three of his children, is a sober and powerful work, inexplicably neglected and unlike any other work of choral music from the 19th century. Perhaps most performances don't capture its full weight, but this live recording from the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra under Mariss Jansons, does so. There are many deep pleasures here. The orchestra's choir is extraordinary: rich yet without a hint of wobble and utterly clear in its sense of the text. Jansons keeps things at a deliberate pace that lets the music breathe and the currents of personal experience rise to the surface. The soloists, none terribly well known, are fine in their individual numbers, but absolutely transcendent in ensembles, nowhere more so that in the sublime "Quando corpus morietur" finale (track 10); there are a couple of other strong recordings of this work, but it seems likely that no one has ever matched this conclusion. The live recording from the Herkulessaal in Munich is impressively transparent and faithful to the spontaneity of the event. A superb Dvorák release.
Hollow pathos is not his thing. From an artist like Mariss Jansons Friedrich Schiller’s Ode: “An die Freude” must receive a far deeper significance, which also fully encompasses the doubt and profound hope embodied in this text. And thus, in Jansons’s recording of the Ninth Symphony, the choral finale does not degenerate to mere superficial orgy of jubilation, but rather becomes a delicately balanced, wisely developed drama. On October 27, 2007, the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks played Beethoven’s Ninth in the presence of the Pope in the Vatican. The recording of this memorable concert is now being released in the highest audiophile recording quality as a multi-channel SACD.