CD of the Week: Yannick Nézet-Séguin: Mendelssohn: Symphonies 1–5

The Canadian maestro channels his uniquely impassioned conducting in  a new set of Mendelssohn’s symphonies.

With certain conductors, an audience will have bought a ticket for two reasons: chiefly, the orchestral performance itself, but in the case of conductors like Canadian Yannick Nézet-Séguin, audience members are also treated to a vivacious choreography. Nézet-Séguin’s unmatched passion and energy is as much fun to watch as it is to listen to the music itself. If you need proof, watch his 2013 appearance at The Proms:

At the age of 42, the Canadian conductor has already established himself as one of the world’s most renowned maestros. Within his lengthy resume are positions with a number of orchestras around the world, interspersed with several international guest-conducting appearances, including our own Boston Symphony Orchestra. In 2016, Nézet-Séguin was appointed to be the third Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera in New York, starting in 2020.

For the newest installation to his deep recording discography, Nézet-Séguin teams up with the London-based Chamber Orchestra of Europe and RIAS Chamber Choir in all five of Felix Mendelssohn’s symphonies. Within these five works, the German composer touches upon nearly every corner of human expression, from the divinity of the Hymn of Praise Symphony to the exhilarating bustle of his Italian Symphony, making this collection the perfect project for a conductor of Nézet-Séguin’s energy and sensibility.

Listen to a track:

For more information and to purchase this recording, visit ArkivMusic.

Track listing:
CD 1:
    1-4. Symphony No. 1 in C minor
    5-8. Symphony No. 3 in A minor, "Scottish"
CD 2:
    1-14. Symphony No. 2 in B-flat, "Hymn of Praise"
CD 3:
    1-4. Symphony No. 4 in A, "Italian"
    5-9. Symphony No. 5 in D minor, "Reformation