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7/17/97: Comments on new recording, specifically the Eroica (audio sample).

There is a new audio file here. It is the last 83 seconds of the Egmont overture from my new recording. The recording also includes the two rarely-heard arias of Clärchen from Egmont and a performance of the Eroica. Click here to go to the audio pages.

I’ve been asked to make a few comments on what I feel is distinctive about the Eroica performance on this CD, so I would like to point out three things:

  • In the first movement (bars 657-662), the first trumpet goes up the octave on the third quarter of 657 and plays the melody with the flutes, oboes, and clarinettes as per the traditional rewriting. But the second trumpet does not double it at the octave as the tradition has it. Rather it goes up the octave on the third quarter of 657 and plays the first trumpet part as written by Beethoven. I feel this to be a good compromise between the added excitement of the traditional rewriting and the original intention of the author.
  • In the second movement (bars 8-15, 37-46, 50-55, and 61-64), the string triplets are played ricochet with an upbow on the eighth note, thus giving the effect of a drum. This accompaniment is far more appropriate to the movement’s funerary spirit than generic, on-the-string or even spiccato execution.
  • Finally, in the last movement, there are slight changes of tempo for each variation—within the indicated allegro molto and poco andante. At the final presto (bar 431), we have a printed metronome of 116 to the eighth which is corrected to 116 to the quarter. Otherwise, there would be virtually no change in speed between poco andante and presto.

©1997 by Joseph Rescigno. The text here may be freely reproduced for non-commercial purposes as long as credit is given.

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