This article has been marked as in need of a revisit. That’s where I feel like I didn’t do the piece justice or have more to say (usually because I didn’t know it nearly well enough or didn’t have the right perspective). I’ll keep the original article for posterity, but publish a new version that will eventually be linked here for my new take on it.
Performed by the Cleveland Orchestra under George Szell
I kinda loved this. I generally try to read up on the history of the piece before or as I am listening, but leave any artistic or structural information for afterward. Sometimes I cheat. This piece is genuinely pleasant. I’m a sucker for horns, and there’s lots of pretty horn parts. It has a very clear structure and themes and is very clean in that respect, but also fits the description of his having written it after a pleasant vacation with Mrs. Schumann. Very enjoyable, and not a dull moment, even in the quieter or more lyrical sections.