Schubert in the round
Yesterday I heard a wonderful performance of the Schubert Symphony #5, a great personal favorite of mine. This innovative performance was not only one of great interpretation, phrasing, and sensitivity of the playing. What facilitated this even more was the arrangement of the players: Conductor Adam Fischer asked the flute player, both oboe players, and both bassoons to sit in a semi-circle right in front of him. Behind them, arranged in a semicircle, were the strings. In the back row of the semicircle were the two horns, and on the right side, the three basses.
The winds have a very prominent part in this symphony, so appropriately they sat in front. And this made it possible to hear the wonderfully simple, yet intricate melodies that Schubert assigned to these instruments.
The performance as I heard it done by the Berlin Philharmonic was absolutely stunning. It was very close to my all-time favorite performance of this work by Sir Georg Solti.
Here is this work: F. Schubert – Symphony No. 5 in B flat major, D. 485; but in this performance with Adam Fischer conducting a different orchestra: The Chamber Orchestra of Europe
Tags: Franz Schubert, Symphony #5, Adam Fischer, Berlin Philharmonic