Studying Bruckner


  • Symphony No. 3 in D minor

Performed by the Swiss Romande Orchestra, conducted by Marek Janowski

I am continuing my study of the orchestral works by the Austrian composer Anton Bruckner. As with all music, my personal taste, mood, and other factors influence my ability to enjoy and get meaning out of any music. In this case, I was struck by the composer’s orchestration, and also his originality in establishing a musical mood. The orchestration seems influenced by Wagner, who was Bruckner’s contemporary. Like Wagner, Bruckner is fond of using a great deal of Brass to contrast the lush sound of the strings. Also, another musical genius of the time was none other than Gustav Mahler.

From the start, a mysterious mood is established immediately with the interesting string figure that precedes the first movement’s opening theme. Janowski lets the theme establish a nice contrast with the ghostly background sounds that we hear.

This first movement is quite long. And this is frequently the case with Bruckner. I often feel like the music is about to end, yet the composer seems to not see it that way. So, clearly, I have a lot more to learn. As a contrast, I like the energy and vigor of both the Scherzo and finale.

Here is the Bruckner Symphony No 3 D minor with one of my favorite conductors, the late George Solti

And next, here is the Bruckner: Symphony No. 3, with Stanislaw Skrowaczewski conducting the Berliner Philharmoniker


Tags: Anton Bruckner, Symphony #3, Marek Janowski, Swiss Romande Orchestra

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