Larsson: Orchestral Works, Vol. 3
Helsingborgs Symfoniorkester; Manze, Andrew
Our recording of Lars-Erik Larsson’s symphonic works is now finally complete. Vol. 3 features the Third Symphony by this composer, who along with Dag Wirén even in today’s Sweden continues to number among the most popular composers of the classical modern period. This also applies to Larsson’s third symphony, a four-movement work written at the end of World War II. It is clearly audible that in this majestic orchestral genre he tended to a style with closer ties to the tradition than he did in his works of smaller format. At the same time, however, this symphony is also his strongest and most individual contribution to this genre. In view of its flawless formal proportions, thorough mastery of the highest quality, and characteristic invention, it is really difficult to understand why Larsson withdrew this symphony shortly after its premiere and retained only the finale, now with a new, lengthier slow introduction and the title Concerto Overture No. 3. This finale is in fact a movement of especially captivating elegance, a unique humorous quality, and outstanding craftsmanship that is very much able to hold its own and represents some of the composer’s best and most typical qualities.