Fritz Brun: Complete Orchestral Works

Composer Fritz Brun
Artist Moscow Symphony Orchestra
Bratislava Symphony Orchestra
Adriano conductor
Format 11 CD
Cat. number 95784
EAN code 5028421957845
Release May 2019

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About this release

In this release, the prominent conductor Adriano with help from the world renowned Bratislava and Moscow Symphony Orchestras, among others, draws together the first complete series of orchestral works by Swiss composer Fritz Brun (1878 –1959). This set sheds light on the little-known composer’s repertoire, from the rhapsodies, the concertos, to ten sweeping symphonies.

Brun grew up in Lucerne and his time active as a composer coincided with a period of high creative output of Swiss music. Brun’s repertoire sits alongside other native composers such as Honegger, Schoeck and Bloch. The crowded market, combined with the struggle to find a publisher (only three out of his ten symphonies were published in his lifetime) offers one indication as to why Brun’s works failed to reach the mainstream public. While not a household name, Brun is often touted as the Swiss answer to Vaughan Williams and Edward Elgar. Brun’s works have a nostalgic touch; they draw on the Romantic and Classical eras in their emotional sincerity and defined forms, but always with a modern flavour.

The first CD opens with the bold staccato chords of Symphony No.1, reminiscent of late Beethoven, while Symphony No.2 has a lighter feel, as the composer paints an image of youth, love, heartbreak and the beauty of nature with rich harmonies inspired by Brahms and expressive Schumann-inspired fanfares. This set showcases Brun’s works as a fascinating collage of cross-historical and cross-cultural encounters.

After graduating from the Cologne conservatoire, Brun worked in Berlin, London and Dortmund where he took up various music posts. His music reflects his European travels and unites diverse inspirations from different countries and eras as equals on his musical plane. Modernist influences are skilfully interwoven into his compositions, the scherzo movements for example, draw on Stravinsky in their timbre and rhythms and Symphony No.5 liberally experiments with tonality. However, similar to his English counterparts, his music remains rooted in his homeland. Symphony No.3 is inspired by the Alps and it is his best known work, made particularly famous for its use of Italian-Swiss folk melodies. In his later life, Brun returned to Switzerland, where he served as director of the Berne Music Society until his retirement in 1941. The final bonus disc features historical recordings, in particular, the celebrated Paul Sacher (1906–1999) brings his interpretation of Variations for string orchestra and piano, and Brun conducts his own Symphony No.8.

This unique set of recordings is the result of over a decade of perseverance by Adriano to share these hidden gems with a 21st-century audience and bring Fritz Brun the recognition he so rightly deserves.

Fritz Brun (1878-1959) was one of the most important Swiss composers of the 20th century. He studied in Köln, Germany, and one of his most influential teachers was Willem Mengelberg. He held various jobs in Germany and London, but settled in his native Switzerland to become a conductor and teacher.
Brun’s musical style has its foundation in Beethoven and Brahms, but also Richard Strauss and Wagner. His orchestral works, based on solid Classicism, abound in long and sweeping melodies, rich harmonies and brilliant orchestrations. Included are his 10 symphonies, the piano concerto and cello concerto, overture and symphonic poems.
This set brings together the recordings that conductor Adriano made with the Moscow Symphony Orchestra, and which were previously issued on several labels.
A worthy tribute to a great Swiss Symphonist!

Track list

Disk 1

  1. Symphonie Nr. 1 in B Minor: I. Allegro moderato
  2. Symphonie Nr. 1 in B Minor: II. Adagio non troppo
  3. Symphonie Nr. 1 in B Minor: III. Allegro energico – Andante molto sostenuto – Poco più mosso
  4. Symphonie Nr. 1 in B Minor: IV. Allegro con brio
  5. Ouvertüre zu einer Jubiläumsfeier: I. Largo –Vivace

Disk 2

  1. Symphonie Nr. 2 in B-Flat Major: I. Allegro moderato
  2. Symphonie Nr. 2 in B-Flat Major: II. Allegro appassionato
  3. Symphonie Nr. 2 in B-Flat Major: III. Adagio sostenuto
  4. Symphonie Nr. 2 in B-Flat Major: IV. Non troppo vivace
  5. Symphonischer Prolog: I. Lento - Allegro con brio

Disk 3

  1. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: I. Allegro molto moderato, ma agitato II. Variationen über ein altes tessinisches Drei-Königslied
  2. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: Thema. Tranquillo
  3. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: Var. 1. Andante sostenuto
  4. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: Var. 2. Poco più mosso
  5. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: Var. 3. Alla marcia
  6. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: Var. 4. Presto
  7. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: Var. 5. Sostenuto
  8. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: Var. 6. Adagio affettuoso
  9. Symphonie Nr. 3 in D Minor: III. Allegro non troppo

Disk 4

  1. Symphonie Nr. 4 in E Minor: I. Poco mosso, con tranquillità
  2. Symphonie Nr. 4 in E Minor: II. Mosso, con rabbia – Adagio sostenuto – Tempo I
  3. Symphonie Nr. 4 in E Minor: III. Andante – Allegro energico – Tranquillo – Wuchtig
  4. Rhapsodie für Orchester: I. Andante – Mosso – Allegro moderato – Mosso

Disk 5

  1. Symphonie Nr. 5 in E-Flat Major: I. Chaconne
  2. Symphonie Nr. 5 in E-Flat Major: II. Gehetzt, phantastisch
  3. Symphonie Nr. 5 in E-Flat Major: III. Langsam
  4. Symphonie Nr. 5 in E-Flat Major: IV. Rasch und wütend
  5. Symphonie Nr. 10 in B-Flat Major: I. Allegro non troppo
  6. Symphonie Nr. 10 in B-Flat Major: II. Mosso
  7. Symphonie Nr. 10 in B-Flat Major: III. Adagio
  8. Symphonie Nr. 10 in B-Flat Major: IV. Vivace

Disk 6

  1. Symphonie Nr. 6 in C Major: I. Praeludium. Poco andante
  2. Symphonie Nr. 6 in C Major: II. Mosso, non troppo – Lento – Tempo I
  3. Symphonie Nr. 6 in C Major: III. Andante amabile, quasi allegretto
  4. Symphonie Nr. 6 in C Major: IV. Tema con variazioni
  5. Symphonie Nr. 7 D Major: I. Nachklang. Andante tranquillo
  6. Symphonie Nr. 7 D Major: II. Vivace
  7. Symphonie Nr. 7 D Major: III. Intermezzo. Andante con grazia
  8. Symphonie Nr. 7 D Major: IV. Allegro

Disk 7

  1. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: I. Allegro vivace
  2. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: II. Andante
  3. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: III. Notturno. Andante comodo
  4. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: IV. Allegro non troppo
  5. 3 Lieder: I. Auf meines Kindes Tod
  6. 3 Lieder: II. Die drei Zigeuner
  7. 3 Lieder: III. Jugendgedenken

Disk 8

  1. Symphonie Nr. 9 in F Major: I. Vorspiel. Vivace
  2. Symphonie Nr. 9 in F Major: II. Serenade. Allegretto comodo
  3. Symphonie Nr. 9 in F Major: III. Liebesruf. Andante sostenuto
  4. Symphonie Nr. 9 in F Major: IV. Im Kreis der Freunde. Allegro
  5. Symphonie Nr. 9 in F Major: V. Glaube und Zweifel – Lob Gottes und der Natur. Andante
  6. Aus dem Buch Hiob

Disk 9

  1. Konzert für Klavier & Orchester in A Major: I. Allegro moderato
  2. Konzert für Klavier & Orchester in A Major: II. Andante sostenuto —
  3. Konzert für Klavier & Orchester in A Major: III. Allegro
  4. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: I. Thema. Andante tranquillo
  5. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: II. Andante tranquillo
  6. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: III. Poco più mosso
  7. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: IV. Lo stesso tempo
  8. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: V. Mosso
  9. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: VI. Die Viertel etwas ruhiger als vorher
  10. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: VII. Vivace
  11. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: VIII. Largo
  12. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier: IX. Allegro
  13. Divertimento für Klavier & Streicher

Disk 10

  1. Konzert für Violoncello & Orchester in D Minor: I. Allegro moderato
  2. Konzert für Violoncello & Orchester in D Minor: II. Andante sostenuto, con sentiment
  3. Konzert für Violoncello & Orchester in D Minor: III. Allegro animato
  4. Verheissung
  5. Grenzen der Menschheit
  6. 5 Lieder für eine Altstimme & Klavier: I. Lebensgenuss
  7. 5 Lieder für eine Altstimme & Klavier: II. Die Entschlafenen
  8. 5 Lieder für eine Altstimme & Klavier: III. Abendständchen
  9. 5 Lieder für eine Altstimme & Klavier: IV. Es wehet kühl und leise
  10. 5 Lieder für eine Altstimme & Klavier: V. Der Wunsch

Disk 11

  1. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: I. Allegro vivace
  2. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: II. Andante
  3. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: III. Notturno. Andante comodo
  4. Symphonie Nr. 8 in A Major: IV. Allegro non troppo
  5. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: I. Thema. Andante tranquillo
  6. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: II. Andante tranquillo
  7. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: III. Poco più mosso
  8. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: IV. Lo stesso tempo
  9. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: V. Mosso
  10. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: VI. Die Viertel etwas ruhiger als vorher
  11. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: VII. Vivace
  12. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: VIII. Largo
  13. Variationen für Streichorchester & Klavier über ein eigenes Thema: IX. Allegro