Symphony No. 3 In D Minor
MUSIKKOLLEGIUM WINTERTHUR ZEHETMAIR
Thomas Zehetmaier gets off to a fantastic start with Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 3, the work marking his discographic debut as the principal conductor of the Musikkollegium Winterthur. This prizewinning, richly traditional Swiss orchestra once again offers a compelling performance enhanced by agile flexibility of chamber character. The overwhelming acoustics of the Winterthur Town Church contribute their share to the magnificent Bruckner sound, which here has been perfectly captured in three-dimensional 2+2+2 recording technology and released on a high resolution Super Audio album. Bruckner’s insecurity about his own works is legendary. He repeatedly submitted his symphonies to radical revisions- often because of a few critical remarks. In any event, the “Third” was a genuine disaster when it was premiered; the orchestra’s musicians are even said to have left the stage during the performance. Perhaps the absolutely servile accumulation of quotations from Wagner was then somewhat too much of a good thing. As a consequence, Bruckner eliminated all the excessive Tristan and Ring baggage, and the result was a work of appealing design. What causes difficulty for many a gigantic orchestra is easy for the Winterthur musicians: the realization of Bruckner’s original tempo relations represents a genuine challenge. The syncopated unison passages in the finale assume brute force in the prescribed Allegro that normally would have been beyond the reach of a trim orchestral ensemble. It has been a long time since Bruckner sounded so fresh!