There are no classic symphonies that have been performed more often than those of Ludwig van Beethoven. His fifth symphony includes history’s four most famous notes and the seventh was revolutionary in its emphasis on rhythm. In this new release from Reference, Music Director Manfred Honeck leads the Pittsburgh Symphony in a distinctive interpretation of these most beloved works.
“A recording of Beethoven is always a great occasion and event,” says Maestro Honeck in the CD’s music notes. “The marrying of the music’s historic interpretation with the brilliance of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s playing and the fantastic technique of Soundmirror have made this recording possible. It has been a joy to look deeply into that which Beethoven has composed, while also discovering the sense and content of the music and thus the reason why it has been written. For me, this is always the most beautiful part of the creative process.”
This release is the fourth in the highly acclaimed “Pittsburgh Live!” series of multi-channel hybrid SACD releases on the FRESH! Series from Reference Recordings. Previous releases “Bruckner 4” and “Dvořák/Janaček” received numerous critical accolades, including a 2015 Grammy© Award nomination for “Dvořák/Janaček.” Of that release, critic Alain Steffen of Pizzicato said, “This is one of the most gripping performances of Dvořák’s 8th Symphony that I ever heard. Honeck and Pittsburgh excel themselves and definitely team up to one of those great partnerships like Solti and Chicago, Ozawa and Boston, Bernstein and New York, Szell and Cleveland, Tilson-Thomas and San Francisco.”
For more than 120 years, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has been known for its artistic excellence, a rich history of the world’s finest conductors and musicians, and a strong commitment to the Pittsburgh region and its citizens. Past music directors have included many of the greats, including Fritz Reiner (1938-1948), William Steinberg (1952-1976), Andre Previn (1976-1984), Lorin Maazel (1984-1996) and Mariss Jansons (1995-2004). This tradition of outstanding international music directors was furthered in fall 2008, when Honeck became music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony.
The orchestra has been at the forefront of championing new American works, and gave the first performance of Leonard Bernstein’s Symphony No. 1 “Jeremiah” in 1944. The Pittsburgh Symphony has a long and illustrious history in the areas of recordings and radio concerts. As early as 1936, the Pittsburgh Symphony broadcast on the airwaves coast-to-coast and in the late 1970s it made the groundbreaking PBS series “Previn and the Pittsburgh.” The orchestra has received increased national attention since 1982 through network radio broadcasts on Public Radio International, produced by Classical WQED-FM 89.3, which are made possible by the musicians of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
With a long and distinguished history of touring both domestically and overseas since 1900—including 36 international tours to Europe, the Far East and South America—the Pittsburgh Symphony continues to be critically acclaimed as one of the world’s greatest orchestras.
This release and the entire “Pittsburgh Live!” series are recorded and mastered by the team at Soundmirror, whose outstanding orchestral, solo, opera and chamber recordings have received more than 70 Grammy nominations and awards! Soundmirror has recorded for every major classical record label, now including Reference Recordings.
FRESH! is part of Reference Recordings’ mission to encourage outstanding artists and give them a strong platform for promotion and sales nationally and internationally.
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra recordings are made possible with generous support from BNY Mellon. “Beethoven 5 & 7” will be available at pittsburghsymphony.org and at Heinz Hall.
Media can request review copies of the release from Reference Recordings at 800-336-8866 or firstname.lastname@example.org.