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Bernstein: Symphonies Nos. 1 and 2



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Leonard Bernstein's legendary 1943 Carnegie Hall conducting début brought his name to national attention, and the event was followed a few months later by the triumphant reception of his Symphony No. 1 'Jeremiah.' This major symphonic statement explores a crisis in faith and employs Jewish liturgical sources, its final movement, Lamentation, being an anguished cry at the destruction of Jerusalem. Sharing the theme of loss of faith, Symphony No. 2 'The Age of Anxiety' takes W.H. Auden's poem of the same name and follows its four characters in their spiritual journey to hard-won triumph. Bernstein's Symphony No. 3 'Kaddish' can be heard on Naxos 8.559742. Leonard Bernstein's own recording of the symphonies (as well as other works), with the New York Philharmonic, are available in a seven-disc collection released by Sony Classical in 2012 (886978808622). Soloists on our recording are world-famous pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, and mezzo-soprano Jennifer Johnson Caro who has sung at the Met in New York and at Chicago Opera Theatre. Conductor Marin Alsop is a Bernstein protégé and accepted as one of his leading interpreters today.
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