Evgeny Mravinsky, Vol. 3
Margolin, Veniamin; Trizno, Boris; Mravinsky, Evgeny; Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra; USSR State Symphony Orchestra
Mravinsky recorded in studios from 1938 to 1961. His interpretations of Tchaikovsky set standards that hold to this day and his Shostakovich performances enjoy the intimate authority of the connoisseur, but he was also altogether at home in the standard Classical and Romantic repertoires. That said, he was often able to emphasize nuances that other, “Western” conductors did not bring out. This series of recordings includes one of the three instrumental pieces from the operas of Richard Wagner (1813-1883) as well as an astonishingly urgent, brisk reading of Anton Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony. Listening to the grandiose Poème de l’Exstase by Alexander Skryabin (1872-1915) conducted by this precision fanatic, it is easy to imagine that one is hearing details and structures that other conductors may allow to be absorbed into the overall sound. The inner-Soviet renaissance of the Skryabin contemporary and late Romantic melodist Vasily Kalinnikov (1866-1901) received decisive impetus from Mravinsky – not least thanks to his energetic reading of the composer’s Second Symphony. Mravinsky was, in the words of music commentator Norman Lebrecht, "the most capable of all Soviet conductors".