Don’t be afraid of the slow tempi; Giulini is one of those conductors of genius who can make it work, and sometimes even convince you that it’s better their way, which he does in the first and fourth movements. I agree with other reviewers that he could have brought out more of the parodistic qualities of the second and third movements, but that is small potatoes compared to his attention to musical detail, and the controlled passion in his interpretation. Giulini also had a knack for getting precisely the sound he wanted out of any orchestra, even if they were used to playing differently, and much as I like Solti I prefer the sound Giulini coaxes here from the CSO.
Composer: Franz Schubert
Orchestra: Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Carlo Maria Giulini
Number of Discs: 1
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 2.17 GB
In my experience this is a uniquely heroic Schubert Ninth, one of the few in modern sound that returns to the way Furtwangler performed it, but going even further in grandeur. In his eighties Giulini became a very slow conductor, and his last phase, as heard on numerous Sony recordings, took patience on the listener’s part. In the midst of too many performances where weight and solemnity counted against the music, a few struck gold. No one but Celibidache would have dared to unfold the “Great” C Major symphony as if it were by Bruckner; more often conductors try to reverse the link to bring out the Schubertian side of Bruckner, lightening texture and tempo. Giulini dares to find tragic depth, for example, in the second movement, usually taken at a faster than ambling pace as befits its marking of Andante con moto.
Giulini approaches the all but endless repetition in this movement as a protracted outcry from the heart — an ache that refuses to heal — leaning into the second subject for lyric anguish. This movement is the touchstone, I think, for whether a listener will respond to the whole interpretation. The other three movements fall into line; the conductor is serious and determined even in the Scherzo. It’s startling that he exposes such gravity in the key of C (is there any comparable example in other symphonies?) yet the Chicago Symphony Orchestra follows with sympathy and intensity. Slow tempi can be saved by having inner live, as they do here.
|Symphonie Nr. 9 C-dur D. 944|
|A1||1. Andante – Allegro Ma Non Troppo||14:26|
|A2||2. Andante Con Moto||16:51|
|B1||3. Scherzo. Allegro Vivace||16:10|
|B2||4. Finale. Allegro Vivace||11:08|
Analyzed Folder: /192k Schubert – Symphony No. 9 – Giulini_dr.txt
DR Peak RMS Filename
DR12 -0.74 dB -19.47 dB A1 Symphonie Nr. 9 C-dur D. 944 – 1. Andante – Allegro Ma Non Troppo.flac
DR14 -0.47 dB -21.98 dB A2 Symphonie Nr. 9 C-dur D. 944 – 2. Andante Con Moto.flac
DR14 -2.37 dB -22.67 dB B1 Symphonie Nr. 9 C-dur D. 944 – 3. Scherzo. Allegro Vivace.flac
DR13 -0.21 dB -17.81 dB B2 Symphonie Nr. 9 C-dur D. 944 – 4. Finale. Allegro Vivace.flac
Number of Files: 4
Official DR Value: DR13
- Composed By – Franz Schubert
- Conductor – Carlo Maria Giulini
- Engineer [Recording Engineer] – Hans-Peter Schweigmann
- Orchestra – Chicago Symphony Orchestra
- Producer – Günther Breest
- Recording Supervisor – Cord Garben
- RCM: Okki Nokki (L’art du son, Clearaudio’s Diamond Cleaner)
- TT: Vintage (1982) Yamaha PX-3
- Cartridge: Sumiko Black Bird
Cartridge: ZYX 50R Bloom
- Phono amp: Audio Research SP15 own tube phono section.
- ADC/DAC: RME Fireface UC
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