Stanislaw Skrowaczewski

Schumann: Complete Symphonies

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In this 2007 recording, Polish conductor Stanislaw Skrowaczewski takes an extreme approach to Schumann's four symphonies. His slow tempos are slower than usual (the introduction to the First Symphony, for example, and the introduction to the finale of the Fourth), and his fast tempos are faster (the Scherzo of the Second, and the outer movements of all the symphonies). In addition, the poetic movements (the Fourth's Romanze) are more poetic, the anguished movements (the Second's Adagio) more anguished, the triumphant movements (the Third's finale) more triumphant, and the excited movements (the Second's finale) more excited. With the brightly colorful, brilliantly polished, and extremely enthusiastic playing of the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie, Skrowaczewski creates performances that defuse the supposed "problems" of Schumann's symphonies, with their reputation for heavy orchestration, structural insecurity, and emotional restraint. Schumann fans may differ as to whether his interpretations are appropriate or overly exaggerated. Oehms' sound is clear and cool, with plenty of detail.

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