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Symphony No. 7 (actually his ninth symphony) is perhaps his most beautiful work and with his Fourth Symphony certainly his most popular. After a gentle tremolo in the violins the first horn and the cellos (the most euphonious orchestral instruments) sing a rising very wide E major arpeggio; in it's continuation the violas quietly take over from the horn; this peaceful melody (repeated by the full orchestra) gently leads to the dominant key, where a very different second tune begins. It has a restless character, modulating incessantly starting in steps with a Wagnerian turn (as in Bruckner's Second Symphony and in Wagner's Rienzi). Also unexpectedly a third melody, very different from either the first or the second, appears like an austere rhythmic dance. With these three building-blocks, the composer gives us one of the loveliest first movements in all music. I would like to mention that Robert Haas is right in ignoring the many tempo modifications added (or at least suggested) by lesser men. They disturb the flow of the music.Bruckner's adoration of Wagner (who was eleven years his senior) is well known. He had the premonition that his beloved "master of all masters" might soon die. This fear inspired the main tune of the second movement. The composer employed for the first time four "Wagner tubas" which Wagner had specially invented for the Ring cycle. Their sound is across between horns and trombones. They intone a funereal melody answered by the strings. One great melody is followed by the next without ever turning back to the main tune, until the low notes in the brass lead to the slightly faster, much happier second tune (one of Bruckner's greatest inspirations). Here may I point to the similarity in form between this movement and the slow movement in Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Also there the slow 4/4 tune is twice followed by a slightly faster 3/4 after which the substantial part of the movement does not mention the second melody again. The first melody reappears with developmental episodes, then the lovely second section is played atone higher with wonderful counterpoints. The main tune appears (highly embroidered) a third time, leading to Bruckner's most successful Steigerung (increase) to a shattering climax. It needs to be mentioned that Nikisch persuaded our very insecure master to add a cymbal, triangle and timpani (none of which are in the original score) to this tremendous moment. I think they should be discarded, especially A. Bruckner afterwards wrote over these added parts gilt nicht (not valid), though it must be said that some people question that this is Bruckner's handwriting. (Unfortunately the six rather grotesque cymbal strokes in the 1887 Eighth Symphony cannot be eliminated because Bruckner did write them in the score, which only shows how lasting and often pernicious the influence of the so-called "experts" could be.) A heart-rending coda leads to the first theme in the major. Bruckner wrote double note values here; it is unfortunately impossible to obey this literally, because no brass-player could sustain such an incredibly slow pace.Though the Scherzo is in the minor it makes a very joyful impression. A stamping rhythm pervades the whole piece and accompanies the main tune played by the trumpet. It is said that the crowing of a cockerel inspired this splendid, somewhat cheeky melody. The elegant Trio (a little slower) offers a complete contrast. It's second pan is based on Bruckner's beloved contrary motion (which is also used profusely in the first movement). The Finale starts with the same two-note tremolo as the first movement, except an octave higher and only in the second violins. The main theme in the first violins starts with the same five notes that the horn and cellos played at the beginning, only the rhythm is utterly different and very sprightly. It is repeated by the cellos and brass in the dominant key. Soon the second, constantly modulating, chorale theme accompanied by Schubertian pizzicati follows. Quite unexpectedly the first cheerful tune is played by the whole orchestra in a rather incongruously heroic vein. Soon in a kind of development the first tune in contrary motion is played in two-part writing and in minor. (To me it has a slightly ironic expression here.) The heroic version of the first tune reappears, this time further developed; after a climax and a break the chorale returns. The second section of the first melody gradually leads to the triumphant Coda. In Bruckner's Fifth and Eighth Symphonies the Finale is the crowning glory of the whole work. This is not the case in No. 7. It's main weight rests in the first and second movements. The lovely Finale is in relation to the rest of the symphony more like the Finale in a Haydn symphony.
Symphony No. 7 (actually his ninth symphony) is perhaps his most beautiful work and with his Fourth Symphony certainly his most popular. After a gentle tremolo in the violins the first horn and the cellos (the most euphonious orchestral instruments) sing a rising very wide E major arpeggio; in it's continuation the violas quietly take over from the horn; this peaceful melody (repeated by the full orchestra) gently leads to the dominant key, where a very different second tune begins. It has a restless character, modulating incessantly starting in steps with a Wagnerian turn (as in Bruckner's Second Symphony and in Wagner's Rienzi). Also unexpectedly a third melody, very different from either the first or the second, appears like an austere rhythmic dance. With these three building-blocks, the composer gives us one of the loveliest first movements in all music. I would like to mention that Robert Haas is right in ignoring the many tempo modifications added (or at least suggested) by lesser men. They disturb the flow of the music.Bruckner's adoration of Wagner (who was eleven years his senior) is well known. He had the premonition that his beloved "master of all masters" might soon die. This fear inspired the main tune of the second movement. The composer employed for the first time four "Wagner tubas" which Wagner had specially invented for the Ring cycle. Their sound is across between horns and trombones. They intone a funereal melody answered by the strings. One great melody is followed by the next without ever turning back to the main tune, until the low notes in the brass lead to the slightly faster, much happier second tune (one of Bruckner's greatest inspirations). Here may I point to the similarity in form between this movement and the slow movement in Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Also there the slow 4/4 tune is twice followed by a slightly faster 3/4 after which the substantial part of the movement does not mention the second melody again. The first melody reappears with developmental episodes, then the lovely second section is played atone higher with wonderful counterpoints. The main tune appears (highly embroidered) a third time, leading to Bruckner's most successful Steigerung (increase) to a shattering climax. It needs to be mentioned that Nikisch persuaded our very insecure master to add a cymbal, triangle and timpani (none of which are in the original score) to this tremendous moment. I think they should be discarded, especially A. Bruckner afterwards wrote over these added parts gilt nicht (not valid), though it must be said that some people question that this is Bruckner's handwriting. (Unfortunately the six rather grotesque cymbal strokes in the 1887 Eighth Symphony cannot be eliminated because Bruckner did write them in the score, which only shows how lasting and often pernicious the influence of the so-called "experts" could be.) A heart-rending coda leads to the first theme in the major. Bruckner wrote double note values here; it is unfortunately impossible to obey this literally, because no brass-player could sustain such an incredibly slow pace.Though the Scherzo is in the minor it makes a very joyful impression. A stamping rhythm pervades the whole piece and accompanies the main tune played by the trumpet. It is said that the crowing of a cockerel inspired this splendid, somewhat cheeky melody. The elegant Trio (a little slower) offers a complete contrast. It's second pan is based on Bruckner's beloved contrary motion (which is also used profusely in the first movement). The Finale starts with the same two-note tremolo as the first movement, except an octave higher and only in the second violins. The main theme in the first violins starts with the same five notes that the horn and cellos played at the beginning, only the rhythm is utterly different and very sprightly. It is repeated by the cellos and brass in the dominant key. Soon the second, constantly modulating, chorale theme accompanied by Schubertian pizzicati follows. Quite unexpectedly the first cheerful tune is played by the whole orchestra in a rather incongruously heroic vein. Soon in a kind of development the first tune in contrary motion is played in two-part writing and in minor. (To me it has a slightly ironic expression here.) The heroic version of the first tune reappears, this time further developed; after a climax and a break the chorale returns. The second section of the first melody gradually leads to the triumphant Coda. In Bruckner's Fifth and Eighth Symphonies the Finale is the crowning glory of the whole work. This is not the case in No. 7. It's main weight rests in the first and second movements. The lovely Finale is in relation to the rest of the symphony more like the Finale in a Haydn symphony.
636943426920
Reznicek/Humperdinck/Schreker/ - Symphony 7 in E Major

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Format: CD
Label: NXS
Catalog: 8554269
Rel. Date: 05/11/1999
UPC: 636943426920

Symphony 7 in E Major
Artist: Reznicek/Humperdinck/Schreker/
Format: CD
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Symphony No. 7 (actually his ninth symphony) is perhaps his most beautiful work and with his Fourth Symphony certainly his most popular. After a gentle tremolo in the violins the first horn and the cellos (the most euphonious orchestral instruments) sing a rising very wide E major arpeggio; in it's continuation the violas quietly take over from the horn; this peaceful melody (repeated by the full orchestra) gently leads to the dominant key, where a very different second tune begins. It has a restless character, modulating incessantly starting in steps with a Wagnerian turn (as in Bruckner's Second Symphony and in Wagner's Rienzi). Also unexpectedly a third melody, very different from either the first or the second, appears like an austere rhythmic dance. With these three building-blocks, the composer gives us one of the loveliest first movements in all music. I would like to mention that Robert Haas is right in ignoring the many tempo modifications added (or at least suggested) by lesser men. They disturb the flow of the music.Bruckner's adoration of Wagner (who was eleven years his senior) is well known. He had the premonition that his beloved "master of all masters" might soon die. This fear inspired the main tune of the second movement. The composer employed for the first time four "Wagner tubas" which Wagner had specially invented for the Ring cycle. Their sound is across between horns and trombones. They intone a funereal melody answered by the strings. One great melody is followed by the next without ever turning back to the main tune, until the low notes in the brass lead to the slightly faster, much happier second tune (one of Bruckner's greatest inspirations). Here may I point to the similarity in form between this movement and the slow movement in Beethoven's Ninth Symphony. Also there the slow 4/4 tune is twice followed by a slightly faster 3/4 after which the substantial part of the movement does not mention the second melody again. The first melody reappears with developmental episodes, then the lovely second section is played atone higher with wonderful counterpoints. The main tune appears (highly embroidered) a third time, leading to Bruckner's most successful Steigerung (increase) to a shattering climax. It needs to be mentioned that Nikisch persuaded our very insecure master to add a cymbal, triangle and timpani (none of which are in the original score) to this tremendous moment. I think they should be discarded, especially A. Bruckner afterwards wrote over these added parts gilt nicht (not valid), though it must be said that some people question that this is Bruckner's handwriting. (Unfortunately the six rather grotesque cymbal strokes in the 1887 Eighth Symphony cannot be eliminated because Bruckner did write them in the score, which only shows how lasting and often pernicious the influence of the so-called "experts" could be.) A heart-rending coda leads to the first theme in the major. Bruckner wrote double note values here; it is unfortunately impossible to obey this literally, because no brass-player could sustain such an incredibly slow pace.Though the Scherzo is in the minor it makes a very joyful impression. A stamping rhythm pervades the whole piece and accompanies the main tune played by the trumpet. It is said that the crowing of a cockerel inspired this splendid, somewhat cheeky melody. The elegant Trio (a little slower) offers a complete contrast. It's second pan is based on Bruckner's beloved contrary motion (which is also used profusely in the first movement). The Finale starts with the same two-note tremolo as the first movement, except an octave higher and only in the second violins. The main theme in the first violins starts with the same five notes that the horn and cellos played at the beginning, only the rhythm is utterly different and very sprightly. It is repeated by the cellos and brass in the dominant key. Soon the second, constantly modulating, chorale theme accompanied by Schubertian pizzicati follows. Quite unexpectedly the first cheerful tune is played by the whole orchestra in a rather incongruously heroic vein. Soon in a kind of development the first tune in contrary motion is played in two-part writing and in minor. (To me it has a slightly ironic expression here.) The heroic version of the first tune reappears, this time further developed; after a climax and a break the chorale returns. The second section of the first melody gradually leads to the triumphant Coda. In Bruckner's Fifth and Eighth Symphonies the Finale is the crowning glory of the whole work. This is not the case in No. 7. It's main weight rests in the first and second movements. The lovely Finale is in relation to the rest of the symphony more like the Finale in a Haydn symphony.
        
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