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Fave Swan Lake Recording


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#1 MakarovaFan

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Posted 11 June 2010 - 08:09 AM

My favorite cd recording of Swan Lake conducted by John Lanchbery is finally wearing out. I might just replace it, but what other complete cd recordings can you recommend? I'm looking for a romantic and dance tempo recording if one exists.

Thank you!

#2 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 11 June 2010 - 08:38 AM

My all time favorite is the Dutoit-(just because I much prefer the '77 rendition of the score sans Drigo's revisions). For the '95 version I have the Fedotov.

#3 Cygnet

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 12:19 PM

My all time favorite is the Dutoit-(just because I much prefer the '77 rendition of the score sans Drigo's revisions). For the '95 version I have the Fedotov.

Tempi, engineering and conductor's interpretation are a matter personal taste. For a Western conductor's take on the complete '77, I've always loved Lanchberry. For the Soviet take on the '77 - Rozhdestvensky and Svetlanov. For the '95 performance edition, for me it's Fedotov all the way. Fedotov makes the '95 dance out of your speakers & headphones. The engineering, the clarity, the musicianship, the drama, the love for this score by the late conductor and the Mariinsky musicians -all comes together perfectly in this recording. Fedotov's is a real performance that you can "see" as well as hear.

There are two "Lakes" to avoid. Gergiev recently recorded the '95. It was the soundtrack for the Mariinsky's recent "Swan Lake" dvd, a live performance with Lopatkina & Korsuntsev. The entire CD is a phoned in affair. The overture is devoid of drama and sets the tone for the rest of the score. The overall tempi is erratic, the sound is muffled and the engineering is below par. If you blink (or doze off), you'll miss Act 1. Act 2 (Act 3 at the Mariinsky), lacks excitement, the Czardas is taken at snail's pace, and the Swan Suite and last Act are played with Nascar speed. The other "Lake" to avoid is Pletnev's '77 CD on Ondine with the Russian National Orchestra (2009). Pletnev's approach is like Gergiev's, but it's the whole enchilada.

#4 leonid

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Posted 15 June 2010 - 12:38 AM

My all time favorite is the Dutoit-(just because I much prefer the '77 rendition of the score sans Drigo's revisions). For the '95 version I have the Fedotov.

Tempi, engineering and conductor's interpretation are a matter personal taste. For a Western conductor's take on the complete '77, I've always loved Lanchberry. For the Soviet take on the '77 - Rozhdestvensky and Svetlanov. For the '95 performance edition, for me it's Fedotov all the way. Fedotov makes the '95 dance out of your speakers & headphones. The engineering, the clarity, the musicianship, the drama, the love for this score by the late conductor and the Mariinsky musicians -all comes together perfectly in this recording. Fedotov's is a real performance that you can "see" as well as hear.

There are two "Lakes" to avoid. Gergiev recently recorded the '95. It was the soundtrack for the Mariinsky's recent "Swan Lake" dvd, a live performance with Lopatkina & Korsuntsev. The entire CD is a phoned in affair. The overture is devoid of drama and sets the tone for the rest of the score. The overall tempi is erratic, the sound is muffled and the engineering is below par. If you blink (or doze off), you'll miss Act 1. Act 2 (Act 3 at the Mariinsky), lacks excitement, the Czardas is taken at snail's pace, and the Swan Suite and last Act are played with Nascar speed. The other "Lake" to avoid is Pletnev's '77 CD on Ondine with the Russian National Orchestra (2009). Pletnev's approach is like Gergiev's, but it's the whole enchilada.


I am with you with Fedotov. The recording takes me into the theatre reviving memories of the live performances he conducted and lets not stop with Swan Lake. For me he was the most sensitive ballet conductor of his era, who knew what the spectacle required and always with great taste.

He was also a wondefully simple and sweet natured man.

#5 MakarovaFan

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Posted 15 June 2010 - 06:50 AM

Thanks, everyone, for the help.

I'd like to get the Fedotov recording but neither Amazon nor CD Universe has it. It's available on eBay from Russian vendors, but are they reliable? Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

Thank you!


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