Thursday, December 07, 2017

'Symphony No 4' by Sergei Taneyev

7 December 2017

I am grateful to Lee Dunleavy for recommending, on FaceBook, the 4th Symphony by Sergei Taneyev which I have been listening to this week (in the Naxos recording by the Novosibirsk Academic Symphony Orchestra conducted by Thomas Sanderling). I must admit I had never heard of Taneyev, a Russian composer born in 1856 who died in 1915. He he studied piano at the Moscow Conservatory with Rubinstein and composition with Tchaikovsky, who became a close friend. Taneyev later taught at the Conservatory himself, where his pupils included Rachmaninov. He wrote four symphonies, although the first three were not published until long after his death. Symphony No 4 was published in 1901 (as No 1) is a powerful, romantic work which shows the influence of Tchaikovsky and also reminded me of another Russian work, ‘Symphony No 5 (The Heroic)’ by Alexander Glazunov which I played with Northampton Symphony Orchestra earlier this year (reviewed here in March 2017). I am definitely going to listen to more Taneyev.

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