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CD Review

Jean Sibelius

Symphony #2

  • Symphony #2 in D Major, Op. 43
  • "The Tempest" Suite #1, Op. 109 #2
Iceland Symphony Orchestra/Petri Sakari
Naxos 8.554266 68m DDD
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We begin our gradual survey of Petri Sakari's Sibelius cycle with this typically unfussy and mannered reading of the Second. The young Icelandic conductor carefully avoids bombast and theatricality in an interpretation that is quite charmingly non-indulgent. The Icelandic strings are superb in the Andante ma rubato and little touches of woodwind solos are very typically Scandinavian. You will find none of Collins (Beulah/Decca) retouchings in the Finale that is as earthbound as possible.

Add this to a characterful and pensive 'Tempest' Suite with a very beautiful Oak Tree and a rousing storm, and you have an excellent starter disc for this Sibelius cycle.

Copyright © 2001, Gerald Fenech