Monday, October 24, 2011

Recordings: Symphonic Movement

To my knowledge there are two commercially available recordings of this work. There is the CPO recording, the one I will be discussing here, and another found on a BIS box set celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, containing a whole bunch of other works as well. I do not have access to the BIS recording but have listened to it maybe two times many years ago, when I could access it from the University of Wisconsin library.

I do not remember what year the BIS recording was made or who was conducting it, but I do remember it not being competitive compared to Francis on CPO. According to the BIS website, the performance time for this recording is 13:32, which is around 3 minutes longer than what Pettersson asks for. When Pettersson makes a clear indication for what he wants in terms of performance time, I wonder why someone just goes ahead and comes up with dramatically slower tempos.

Anyway, without really having much to compare to I can still feel confident that Francis and the BBC Scottish SO really do a fine job with this score. Maybe I could make a few minor quibbles about how the trumpets sound a little pinched when pushing in their upper registers, or how the horns could be a bit more powerful, but this is easily the version to have.

I wonder if Christian Lindberg will record this as part of his cycle, as Segerstam never got around to it…


  1. The recording from the BIS boxed set is conducted by Yuri Ahronovitch.

  2. Yes!! We WILL rerecord this piece!!
    Christian Lindberg