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Weinberg: Symphony No. 3; Suite No. 4 from 'The Golden Key' ()

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This release by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, not under music director Gustavo Dudamel but under the highly capable Thord Svedlund, is part of a series on the Chandos label devoted to the orchestral music of the Polish-born Soviet composer Mieczyslaw Weinberg. Weinberg was more obedient to the whims of Soviet cultural commissars than was his contemporary and friend Dmitry Shostakovich, but he nevertheless ran afoul of officialdom, probably because of the strong anti-Semitic streak of the Stalinist state. His music is expertly written and reflects many of the same currents as Shostakovich's. The Symphony No. 3 in B minor, Op. 45, was composed in 1949, right after the second denunciation of Shostakovich the previous year. Weinberg's response to such strictures was less edgy than that of his friend, but the score, packed full of folk tunes from various regions, is consistently attractive. The real find here may be the Suite No. 4 from The Golden Key, Op. 55d, a ballet with elements of the Pinocchio... Hide synopsis

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