Continuation of the Tchaikovsky series: Fifth Symphony released by OehmsClassics
The Fifth Symphony and the Queen of Spades Overture, to be released by OehmsClassics in November 2011, mark the continuation of the Tchaikovsky-cycle by Dmitri Kitaenko and the Cologne Gürzenich Orchestra. The first two CDs in the series (“Manfred” and “Pathétique”) received outstanding international press reviews. “The Tchaikovsky cycle promises greatness”, was the judgement of klassik.com on the release of the Sixth Symphony, while the specialist magazine Pizzicato rated it as “the reference recording for this work from now on”. Musicweb International considers the Manfred Symphony recording simply “a Manfred to die for”.
Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony, sometimes described as the “Fate Symphony”, was written in 1888 after his return from an extensive tour of Europe, through which the Russian composer had achieved great recognition. On the one hand, the positive mood of his period abroad is reflected in the Finale; on the other hand, this work is a harrowing testament to the tragedy of Tchaikovsky's life. The world première, conducted by the composer himself in St. Petersburg on 17 November 1888, met with little understanding on the part of the audience. Although Tchaikovsky was not particularly satisfied with the piece, the German conductor Arthur Nikisch championed the work vigorously, with the result that within just a few years it became one of the most frequently performed works in the repertoire.