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Discussion: Beethoven: Die 9 Sinfonien - Dresdner Philharmonie/Kegel

Posts: 9

Post by nucaleena March 8, 2004 (1 of 9)
has anyone out there heard the new Beethoven Symphonies SACD set on Capriccio with Herbert Kegel and the Dresden Symph.? I can't find any info in English about the performances or the recording (whether they're new DSD surround recordings or remastered stereo PCM, for example). The Capriccio web site is in German only but even my limited German can tell me that it contains barely an iota of info beyond that given above.

The discs have been released at what seems a budget price (42 euros acc. to amazon.deutsche) but are they worth trying? Kegel's Mozart has been quite good in the past but I've not heard his Beet. at all. Have always had a soft spot for the Desden orchestra. Would be grateful for any info.

Post by zeus March 8, 2004 (2 of 9)
nucaleena said:

has anyone out there heard the new Beethoven Symphonies SACD set on Capriccio with Herbert Kegel and the Dresden Symph.? I can't find any info in English about the performances or the recording (whether they're new DSD surround recordings or remastered stereo PCM, for example).

I believe these are recordings from the mid eighties, originally on the Laserlight label.

Post by Castor March 8, 2004 (3 of 9)
nucaleena said:

has anyone out there heard the new Beethoven Symphonies SACD set on Capriccio with Herbert Kegel and the Dresden Symph.? I can't find any info in English about the performances or the recording (whether they're new DSD surround recordings or remastered stereo PCM, for example). The Capriccio web site is in German only but even my limited German can tell me that it contains barely an iota of info beyond that given above.

The discs have been released at what seems a budget price (42 euros acc. to amazon.deutsche) but are they worth trying? Kegel's Mozart has been quite good in the past but I've not heard his Beet. at all. Have always had a soft spot for the Desden orchestra. Would be grateful for any info.

I used to have a couple of the Laserlight CDs The set was recorded 1982-83 and Kegel committed suicide in 1990 (no connection implied here!). The playing of the Dresden Philharmonic is ok but does not have the character of the Dresden Staatskapelle, a much finer body.Performances were middle-of-the road.

Post by nucaleena March 8, 2004 (4 of 9)
zeus said:

I believe these are recordings from the mid eighties, originally on the Laserlight label.

many thanks to zeus and castor.

Post by tream March 8, 2004 (5 of 9)
I haven't heard Kegel's recordings of Beethoven's symphonies, but I do have his recording of the Mass in C, which I have always loved. I believe the Mass in C was recorded in the early 70's. I had the LP and then replaced it with the CD when that was released. Kegel shows a grasp of style in this recording that lets the music come to the fore - no noticable interpretive oddities, just Beethoven. If memory serves, the critical consensus on the symphonies were that they solid performances, perhaps faceless. Always best to listen and form one's own opinions. Shocking about his end - I hadn't known that.

The Mass in C is a great piece - it's not the Missa, but beautiful in its own way.

Post by flyingdutchman March 8, 2004 (6 of 9)
Castor said:

I used to have a couple of the Laserlight CDs The set was recorded 1982-83 and Kegel committed suicide in 1990 (no connection implied here!). The playing of the Dresden Philharmonic is ok but does not have the character of the Dresden Staatskapelle, a much finer body.Performances were middle-of-the road.

Didn't know Kegel committed suicide. Some history please? Nothing really on the internet about it.

Post by tream March 8, 2004 (7 of 9)
Couldn't find much either, except that one notation indicated that Kegel, who worked mostly behind the Iron Curtain (Leipzig, Dresden and Berlin), committed suicide after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

I found a biography available, in German, that looks pretty interesting if only my German were better. "A Conductor's Life in the 20th Century".

http://193.22.36.128/kultur/musik/1013948.html

Post by jucalon November 24, 2009 (8 of 9)
I have read not very favorable reviews about this set in its original form on Laserlight, but have always enjoyed it very much as a whole. My only complaint was the sound, it was not exactly exciting; I find it a bit muffled. Therefore, I very much look forward to listen to these symphonies in their new guise as SACD. Laserlight has never seemed to pay much attention to sound details, they never give much information about anything anyway (i.e. recording locations, year of recording, recording engineer, the ensembles or the artists involved, the versions used, the history behind the recordings, etc). I wonder why they would bother to re-edit this recordings on SACD? Was it perhaps just because this set sold well, or were there artistic merits that lead them to make the decission? I believe Mr Kegel and his ensemble were hard working professionals, so to deem them more or less mediochre is just not fair. I find passion, energy and excietment in these performances. I am not a scholar, but I can say once again I enjoy this interpretation from a very personal point of view.

Post by gonzostick November 25, 2009 (9 of 9)
I first bought this set of Beethoven Symphonies in its first issue, as CAPRICCIO RBCD's waaay back in the beginning of the format in the early 1980's. The recordings were originally NOT high-bit PCM, but just, I think, recorded using Sony equipment. The set then migrated to Laserlight. The performances are OK, but nothing special. I sold my original set as used, many years ago. He does some interesting things here and there, but most of the performances are hindered by the not-so-good tone of the clarinetist in the orchestra.

One has to be very careful with Capriccio SACD's as the company has a habit of just remastering low-bit PCM to SACD as if that would improve the sound. Such a thing is impossible.

Let the buyer beware!!!

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