It was in 1953, 65 years ago, that Herbert Blomstedtconducted the Gothenburg Symphonyfor the first time. Since then he has been back on numerous occasions, performing a wide range of works –only not those by Wilhelm Stenhammar. Blomstedthas told of how an international career gave him little opportunity to study and conduct Stenhammar'smusic. At the age of 85, however, when he no longer had any obligations as a chief conductor, he thought ‘now or never' and began to study the composer's major scores in earnest. And when the time came to perform and record them, what other orchestra could he choose but the Gothenburg Symphony –Stenhammar's‘own' orchestra which he conducted between 1907 and 1922.
The works on this disc are possibly the finest orchestral music that Stenhammarcomposed and he gave the premieres of both with the orchestra, Symphony No. 2in 1915 and the revised version of the Serenadein 1920. In fact, he even dedicated the symphony to the members of the orchestra, his ‘dear friends'.
Wilhelm Stenhammar (1871–1927)
Symphony No.2 in G minor, Op.34 45'19
1) I. Allegro energico13'19
2) II. Andante9'29
3) III. Scherzo. Allegro, ma non troppo presto7'16
4) IV. Finale. Sostenuto — Allegro vivace alla breve14'58
Serenade in F major,Op.3137'21
5) I. Overtura. Allegrissimo7'02
6) II. Canzonetta. Tempo di valse, un poco tranquillo –attacca –4'59
7) III. Scherzo. Presto –attacca –7'33
8) IV. Notturno. Andante sostenuto7'51
9) V. Finale. Tempo moderato9'44
Herbert Blomstedt conductor