Maazel conducts Strauss

Richard Strauss Orchestral works

Deutsche Gramophone created these series of CD’s with performances by major orchestras. Richard Strauss is the first CD release from this series, and the first recording from the New York Philharmonic in several years. The Philharmonic has an impressive tradition, having been led by legendary music directors including Leonard Bernstein, Boulez, Mehta, and Kurt Masur. Lorin Maazel became Music Director of the New York Philharmonic in September 2002, and has recently been replaced by Alan Gilbert.

Mr. Maazel has recorded a lot of Richard Strauss; still, he has never been one of my favorite conductors, because – in my view – I simply do not sense the musical passion in his work. The musical notes are all there, yet I simply do not sense adequate emotion. Perhaps he’s conducted these works all too often by now?

In this recording Maazel leads the NY Philharmonic in Strauss’ Don Juan, Death and Transfiguration, Salome’s dance, and the Rosenkavalier Suite. These are musical masterpieces, and represent amazing, innovative, and strong creativity on the part of the composer. These performances, however, are straightforward and effective without being truly memorable readings of these great compositions.

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