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Review for GMCD 7411 - Fritz Brun - Symphony No. 4 & Rhapsody for Orchestra

www.expeditionaudio.com – September 2015

If you’ve been following and collecting the splendid series of recordings being issued by Guild Records of the symphonies by Swiss composer Fritz Brun, you likely need little encouragement to acquire this most recent release beyond an awareness it exists. In this issue, Brun’s Fourth Symphony (1925) has been programmed alongside the composer’s Rhapsody for Orchestra (1957). All but one of the installments in the Guild series is performed by the Moscow Symphony Orchestra, as is the case here, and all are conducted by Swiss-born conductor and composer Adriano. Fritz Brun (1878-1959) composed ten symphonies between the years 1901 and 1953. He was a gifted symphonist and he concentrated on this talent; his oeuvre is primarily orchestral. In addition to the symphonies, there are a couple of concertos, one each for piano and for cello, and some chamber works. Brun’s music is written in a neo-romantic style, displaying influences of Brahms, Wagner, Bruckner and Reger. He is one of a rather large body of composers who have emerged on recordings in recent years, whose desire it was to extend the romantic tradition in a natural and unquestionably conservative way (Salomon Jadassohn, Louis Glass and Marcel Tyberg, for example). While certainly not deaf to the trends of his time, Brun wrote music that is consistently tonal, melodic and engaging, richly orchestrated and dramatic. While more than thirty years separate the two works on this recording, little stylistic change is evident. The sample provided for you to hear is from the opening movement of the Symphony No. 4. If you’re enjoying it, you’ll be pleased to know that Guild has invested significantly in this little known, yet highly deserving composer, having recorded a half dozen albums in all of his orchestral music.

James Gram

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