Jan Willem de Vriend / The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra / Choir Consensus Vocalis

Symphony no. 2 ('Lobgesang')

Format: SACD hybrid
Label: Challenge Classics
UPC: 0608917254327
Catnr: CC 72543
Release date: 08 February 2013
1 SACD hybrid
Challenge Classics
Catalogue number
CC 72543
Release date
08 February 2013

""It appears no less than a veritable contribution, and proofs how our national amateur choirs in the past quarter century have developed positively""

www.opusklassiek.nl, 19-9-2013

About the album

A new theme in the discography of The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra and conductor Jan Willem de Vriend: Mendelssohn's Symphonies!
Perhaps this is a form of awakening: the dawning of the rediscovery and re-appreciation of Mendelssohn. Jan Willem de Vriend and his orchestra make their contribution to this. Ferdinand David, the concertmaster of the Gewandhaus Orchester and a friend of Mendelssohn’s, was played a role in the first publications of sonatas by Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann and many other composers. He provided the fingerings and bowings for these editions. De Vriend got copies of the editions and closely studied them, learning much about how music was played at that time. Through this, he and his orchestra more fully assimilated Mendelssohn and have their own Mendelssohn. This CD will surely become your own Mendelssohn. Enjoy the music.

"Mendelssohn's Lobgesang is undoubtedly the greatest work that has proceeded from any German composer since Beethoven. It is great in plan, great in development, and masterly in detail." (From: Annual report - Sacred Harmonic Society London (1844)) That Lobgesang was nevertheless forgotten, despite its qualities and reviews such as the previous, is largely due to comparisons with Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, which immediately sprang up, and the large vocal portion of the work. The comparison – see below – was unfavourable for Mendelssohn. Let alone that every symphony, regardless of who wrote it, was compared with Beethoven’s masterpieces.(from the linernotes of this cd)
Een vergeten meesterwerk van Mendelssohn
Een nieuwe toevoeging aan het uitgebreide repertoire van het Orkest van het Oosten en dirigent Jan Willem de Vriend: de symfonieën van Felix Mendelssohn. In een tijd waarin de werken van Mendelssohn zijn herontdekt en steeds meer waardering krijgen geven De Vriend en zijn orkest een waardevolle toevoeging met deze opname van Mendelssohn’s 2e symfonie Lobgesang. Voor deze opname gebruikte De Vriend een uitgave van Ferdinand David, de concertmeester van het Gewandhaus Orkest en vriend van Mendelssohn. Ferdinand David speelde een belangrijke rol in de eerste publicaties van de sonates van Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann en vele andere componisten waarin veel informatie staat over de toenmalige uitvoeringspraktijken. Dankzij deze bewerkingen konden De Vriend en het Orkest van het Oosten een uniek geïnformeerde en eigen versie van Mendelssohn’s symfonie presenteren.

In 1884 was Lobgesang omgeschreven als ongetwijfeld een van Mendelssohns beste werken, waarin invloeden van zijn Duitse voorgangers sinds Beethoven terug te horen zijn. Groots in structuur, groots in opbouw en meesterlijk in de details. Dat het stuk ondanks deze waardering in de vergetelheid is geraakt is te danken aan vergelijkingen met Beethovens 9e Symfonie. Beide werken hebben een groot deel voor koor, wat ongebruikelijk is voor een symfonie. In deze ietwat oneerlijke vergelijking moest Lobgesang vaak het onderspit delven. Dankzij deze onderwaardering en recentelijke nieuwe herwaardering van Mendelssohns symfonie is één van zijn meesterwerken als nieuw te horen.

Het stuk wordt hier uitgevoerd door het Orkest van het Oosten onder leiding van Jan Willem de Vriend. De Vriend is een dirigent van internationaal allure en wordt steeds vaker wereldwijd in deze rol gezien. Hij was de artistiek directeur van het Combattimento Consort Amsterdam en is sinds 2006 de vaste dirigent van het Orkest van het Oosten.
Jan Willem de Vriend mit einer spektakulären Interpretation von Mendelssohns Lobgesang-Sinfonie

Felix Mendelssohns großartige Sinfonie Nr. 2 „Der Lobgesang“ – die Sinfonie-Kantate zur Feier des 400. Jahrestages des Buchdrucks ist mit herausragenden Solisten besetzt und wird geleitet von Jan Willem de Vriend. Der niederländische Dirigent hat sich in den letzten Jahren weltweit einen großen Namen errungen und mit seinen sinfonischen Interpretationen gezeigt, dass er in diesem Genre zu Hause ist. Gemeinsam mit dem Netherlands Symphony Orchestra ermöglicht er dem Zuhörer einen spektakulären und einmaligen Blick in Mendelssohns musikalische Welt.


Jan Willem de Vriend is the artistic director of Combattimento Consort Amsterdam and since 2006 the chief conductor and artistic director of the NetherlandsSymphony Orchestra.

Combattimento Consort Amsterdam devotes itself to the music of about 1600 to 1830. Since its founding in 1982, it has performed virtually throughout the world as well as on many CDs, DVDs and television productions.

Since De Vriend was named chief conductor in 2006, the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra has become a notable phenomenon on the Netherlands’ musical scene. It has presented semi-scenic performances of works by Mozart, Beethoven, Strauss and Mendelssohn. There were premieres of works by Offenbach, Say and Mahler. And by substituting historical instruments in the brass section, it has developed its own distinctive sound in the 18th- and 19th-century repertoire. Recently, the orchestra performed music by Schumann at festivals in Spain. The release of Beethoven’s complete symphonies, conducted by De Vriend, is a big project which starts with the release of this current CD. Also the orchestra's long Mahler tradition is being continued in recordings and tours.

De Vriend has been a guest conductor with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, the Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic, the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, The Hague Philharmonic and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, as well as orchestras in Germany, Sweden and Australia. He is often invited to conduct both in the Netherlands and abroad. He has engagements pending, for example, with The Hague Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra as well as orchestras in China, Germany, Austria and Italy.

Dutch soprano Judith van Wanroij studied with Margreet Honig at the Amsterdam Conservatory and at the Dutch National Opera Academy. She won several national and international prizes. Her opera debut she made in the title role of La Périchole; thereafter she has been singing a.o. Junon (Platée), Ilia (Idomeneo), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), First Lady (Die Zauberflöte), Musetta (La Bohème), at opera houses such as De Nederlandse Opera Amsterdam, La Monnaie Brussels, Teatro Real Madrid, and Théatre du Capitole Toulouse. Next to conductors such as Frans Brüggen, Andrea Marcon, Jérémie Rhorer, and Jaap van Zweden, she regularly works with William Christie and Les Arts Florissants, René Jacobs and his Akademie für Alte Musik, Berlin, Christophe Rousset and his Les Talens Lyriques, and Jan Willem de Vriend and the orchestras he works with. She appeared on several recordings with these conductors and their ensembles, o.a. with Virgin Classics.

The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra is an orchestra with passion, commitment and virtuosity. The orchestra serves the province of Overijssel with concert series in Enschede, Hengelo, Zwolle and Deventer. Another important role for the orchestra is accompanying De Nationale Reisopera andprovincial choral societies. Working with top musicians from all over the world has contributed towards the orchestra achieving its aim of bringing concerts of the highest quality to a broad public. Important conductors for the orchestra were Ed Spanjaard, Rudolf Barshai, Martin Panteleev, Mark Shanahan, Vasili Petrenko and Otto Tausk. Jaap Van Zweden made an indelible impression during his period as chief conductor and set the orchestra well and truly on the map. He will return frequently as guest conductor. Many great international soloists have worked with the orchestra – Gidon Kremer, Natalia Gutman, Heinrich Schiff, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Charlotte Margiono to name a few.



"It appears no less than a veritable contribution, and proofs how our national amateur choirs in the past quarter century have developed positively"
www.opusklassiek.nl, 19-9-2013

De Vriend manages to let the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra sound like a vibrant baroque club, while maintaining the depth and reliability of a modern orchestra.
NRC Handelsblad, 13-6-2013

Jan Willem de Vriend paces the various sections of the finale shrewdly. I particularly appreciate the energy he brings to the music ... there's no stuffiness or sentimentality.
Music Web International, 01-5-2013

For a fresh, immediate statement that compels one's attention from start to finish, I cannot imagine anyone being disappointed by this new release which is also beautifully recorded.
Grammophone, 01-5-2013

Jan Willem de Vriend tackles the symphony with hearty gusto, and the choral contributions of Consensus Vocalis are particulalrly fine.
Irish Times, 19-4-2013

He develops the tonal aura that donates the piece its required greatness.
Fono Forum, 01-4-2013

The stereo-version is impressing, the surround-version is overwhelming
hifi & records, 01-3-2013

Play album


Jan Willem de Vriend asks 'Where is Mendelssohn?'

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