Related Reviews
Klassisk
'...the whole course (of the symphony) is beautifully formed...'
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MusicWeb International
'Overall, this is a pretty successful pairing of two very different Sibelius symphonies. Throughout the disc the playing of the BBCNOW is excellent.'
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FonoForum
'These are rather mild, lovingly designed Sibelius interpretations with a fine balance of the sound colors...'
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Politiken
'The soundscape is warm and unusually clear...you feel as if you can hear every string...'
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Classical Modern Music blog
'This one gives us all the ice and passion of Sibelius-as-Sibelius.'
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Audio Video Club of Atlanta
'Danish conductor Thomas Søndergård gives us illuminating performances in what is shaping up as an outstanding Sibelius cycle.'
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BBC Radio Scotland 'Classics Unwrapped'
Album of the Week: 'His attention to detail, the atmospheres of the pieces have all been beautifully crafted.'
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Pizzicato
Supersonic Award: 'Both performances are very atmospheric and benefit from a superior recording technique.'
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Classical Ear
4 Stars
'Arresting touches, sparky incident and ear-pricking details are legion.'
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BBC Music Magazine
'very dean-cut, finely detailed playing, reflected in a vividly immediate recording...there's plenty to enjoy here...'
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Classica
'...straightforward lines, low-key development, delicate phrase endings…'
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Opera Lounge
'A fantastic recording...one of the best of this piece I've ever come across.'
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The Observer
4 Stars
'...this pairing of Sibelius’s First and Sixth symphonies stands out well in an overcrowded market.'
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WFMT (Chicago)
5 Stars
'...revealed Søndergård to have a profound understanding of the great Finnish composer.'
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BBC Radio 3 'Record Review'
'…this is a Sibelian with a keen ear for texture and balance.'
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Hi-Fi+
4 Stars
'...it's the transition between first and sixth symphonies that demonstrates why Sondergard and the BBC NOW should be considered an important voice of Sibelius...'
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Gramophone
'There is a transparency, too, with the prominence of inner parts illuminating the harmony in interesting ways...It’s a uniquely Sibelian sound'
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Thomas Sondergard - Sibelius: Symphonies 1 & 6 - Hi-Fi News


01 November 2017
Hi-Fi News
Christopher Breunig

Sound Quality: 75% 

Sibelius' First Symphony has long attracted hi-fi enthusiasts with landmark recordings by Collins, Maazel, and Vanska that showed off your system - not least in the exciting scherzo with its textural contrasts. The Sixth, by contrast, was his most austere symphony, described by the composer as offering 'pure cold spring water'. This new recording certainly fits that description with its clarity and judicious tempi. No 1 is even finer with a wonderful opening clarinet solo, pp, that raises great expectations for what follows - a peformance that's absorbing right through. This Dec '14 Cardiff pairing, from BBC Hoddinott Hall, is Sondergard's second coupling in Linn's cycle (we reviewed Nos 2 and 7 in HFN Aug '15). It's not the most sumptuous of orchestras but detail is explicit and the acoustic warm and generous.


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Related Links

BBC National Orchestra of WalesBBC National Orchestra of Wales
Thomas SondergardThomas Sondergard
Sibelius: Symphonies 1 & 6Sibelius: Symphonies 1 & 6