Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 3 in D major, op. 29 "Polish"; Symphony No. 4 in F minor, op. 36 (Movt. I)
Released: Sep 2011
Label: Sony Classical
Tchaikovsky's "Polish" Symphony is often seen as a bit of a structural dud -- considered too square and rigid, particularly compared with his other large-scale works. As such, Bernstein's diligent attention to detail and energy makes a welcome addition to the work's somewhat lackluster recorded legacy. Here, the conductor highlights the lyrical connections to Tchaikovsky's famous ballets (including Swan Lake, which was written during the same period) and connects deeply with the piece. The woodwind playing by the New York Philharmonic is superb.