Shostakovich: Symphony No. 7, Leningrad (Remaster 2015) Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra & Vasily Petrenko
- 1I. Allegretto28:32
- 2II. Moderato (poco allegretto)12:58
- 3III. Adagio18:44
- 4IV. Allegro non troppo19:01
Info for Shostakovich: Symphony No. 7, Leningrad (Remaster 2015)
Three weeks after the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, Shostakovich volunteered with the Home Guard in Leningrad. As the siege of the city intensified, he worked on his Seventh Symphony, completing three movements before being forced to leave Leningrad and travel east by train. The work was completed in December that year. Initially he gave each movement a programmatic title, but later withdrew them, leaving this epic work as an emblem of heroic defiance in the face of conflict and crisis: ‘I dedicate my Seventh Symphony to our struggle against fascism, to our coming victory over the enemy, to my native city, Leningrad.’
„Great performances of this massive symphony aren’t exactly thick on the field, but my goodness, this is one of them. Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic play with 100 percent commitment in every single bar. …Petrenko and his strings take such care to characterize even simple accompaniments helps us to understand just why this performance is so compelling. Petrenko’s Shostakovich cycle already is one of the best out there, but this release really puts the seal on his achievement. This is absolutely essential, and as I said, it’s exceptionally well recorded to boot.“ (David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com)
„Petrenko and the RLPO’s recording of Shostakovich’s Leningrad Symphony stands apart as a treasurable, terrific affirmation of a towering masterpiece… The Royal Liverpool Phil’s cycle of Shostakovich symphonies stands apart from all previous recordings for its edginess and its youth. [Vasily Petrenko] performs the ‘Leningrad’ Symphony not as a relic of an historic event but as a work of music that demands objective interpretation in a different century. The ear is struck immediately by his refusal to overplay textural excesses. The atmosphere is quieter, less ominous than we’re used to. Flutes and clarinets are reduced to a whisper and strings to a hushed susurrus. When the climaxes explode, they do so with total shock and desperation. Between extremes, the conductor maintains an even emotional keel, avoiding the risk of melodrama that Bartók so wickedly caricatured in his Concerto for Orchestra. Petrenko puts his mind to saving the symphony from itself.“ (Norman Lebrecht, Sinfini Music)
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic OrchestraVasily Petrenko, conductor
Recorded at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, England, from 1st to 3rd June, 2012
Produced and edited by Andrew Walton
Engineered by Mike Clements
2xHD Mastering by René Laflamme
Vasily Petrenko - Conductor
Vasily Petrenko was appointed Principal Conductor of the orchestra in September 2006 and in September 2009 became Chief Conductor. He is also Principal Conductor of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, and in 2013 will become Chief Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. He was the Classical BRIT Awards Male Artist of the Year 2010 and the Classic FM/Gramophone Young Artist of the Year 2007. In 2009 he was awarded Honorary Doctorates by the University of Liverpool and Liverpool Hope University. He now works with many of the world’s finest orchestras, including the London Philharmonic, Philharmonia, Russian National, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, Philadelphia, Los Angeles Philharmonic and San Francisco Symphony Orchestras, and the Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, and his wide operatic repertoire includes Macbeth (Glyndebourne Festival Opera), Le Villi, I due Foscari and Boris Godunov (Netherlands Reisopera), Pique Dame (Hamburg State Opera) and Eugene Onegin (Opéra de Paris, Bastille). Recordings with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra include Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony (2009 Classic FM/Gramophone Orchestral Recording of the Year) (Naxos 8.570568), an ongoing Shostakovich cycle, and Rachmaninov’s Symphonic Dances and complete Piano Concertos.
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
The award-winning Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra is Britain’s oldest surviving professional symphony orchestra, dating from 1840. The dynamic young Russian, Vasily Petrenko, was appointed Principal Conductor of the orchestra in September 2006 and in September 2009 became Chief Conductor. The orchestra gives over sixty concerts each season in Liverpool Philharmonic Hall and tours widely throughout the United Kingdom and internationally, most recently touring to China, Switzerland, France, Spain, Germany, Romania and the Czech Republic. In recent seasons, world première performances have included major works by Sir John Tavener, Karl Jenkins, Michael Nyman and Jennifer Higdon, John McCabe, Emily Howard, Gary Carpenter, Mark Simpson and Kenneth Hesketh. Recent additions to the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra’s extensive and critically acclaimed recording catalogue include Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony (2009 Gramophone Awards Orchestral Recording of the Year), the world première performance of Sir John Tavener’s Requiem, the first six discs of an ongoing Shostakovich cycle (the recording of Symphony No. 10 is the 2011 Gramophone Awards Orchestral Recording of the Year), Rachmaninov’s Symphonic Dances, and Piano Concertos Nos. 2 and 3 and Nos. 1 and 4 with Simon Trpčeski; and Rachmaninov’s Symphony No. 3.
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Choir & Chorus Master: Ian Tracey
The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Choir has always been central to the life of Liverpool Philharmonic. Its members are drawn from all walks of life and travel from all parts of the Liverpool City Region, and beyond, to take part in the choir’s activities. The choir’s repertoire covers all periods and styles from Bach to newly commissioned works, with full symphony orchestra and unaccompanied, and it also plays a leading rôle in the famous Liverpool Philharmonic Carol Concerts. The choir has performed in many of the major British concert venues, has sung with the St Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the National Orchestra of Wales and the BBC Philharmonic, and has undertaken several foreign tours, both independently and with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Ian Tracey has been Chorus Master since 1985 and has travelled with the choir both in Britain and abroad.