"Symphony No. 2 in C minor"
||1871 - 1872
1875 - 1876
Bruckner conducting, 20 February 1876, Vienna Philharmonic, Vienna
||ed. Robert Haas, 1938
ed. Leopold Nowak, 1965
ed. William Carragan, 1997 (1877 version)
ed. William Carragan, 2005 (1872 version)
Volkmar Andreae, Vienna Symphony Orchestra, 1953
Anton Bruckner's Symphony No. 2 in C minor was completed in 1872, and revised, like most of Bruckner's other symphonies, at various points thereafter.
It was composed after the Symphony No. 0 in D minor (which was itself composed after the Symphony No. 1 in C minor). It is the only "official" Bruckner symphony (that is to say, excluding No. 0) without a dedication: Franz Liszt tacitly rejected the dedication, and Richard Wagner chose the Symphony No. 3 in D minor instead. The premiere was given with Bruckner himself conducting in 1873.
The score calls for a pair each of flutes, oboes, clarinets, bassoons, four horns, two trumpets, three trombones, timpani, and strings.
The symphony has four movements:
Moderato, C minor
Feierlich, etwas bewegt, A-flat major
Scherzo: Mäßig schnell, C minor, — Trio: Gleiches Tempo, C major
- Finale: Ziemlich schnell, C minor
This version has been published in an edition by William Carragan (published 2005). In this version, the Scherzo and slow movement are swapped, the scherzo preceding. It has been recorded by Kurt Eichhorn, Georg Tintner, and Simone Young.
This version, used at the premiere, features a clarinet rather than a horn solo at the end of the Adagio and deletes repeats in the scherzo. It has been recorded by Kurt Eichhorn.
This version, together with the 1873 version, appears in the Carragan edition of the symphony.
The editions by Robert Haas (published 1938) and Leopold Nowak (published 1965) are both based on this version with some features of the 1872 version mixed in. The edition by Carragan (published 1997) reproduces this version exactly. Most recordings are made of the Haas and Nowak versions. The Carragan edition has been recorded by Daniel Barenboim.
1892 First Published Version
Thie version was edited by Cyrill Hynais. Until recently it was thought to be inauthentic, however Carragan has showed that it corresponds closely to the 1877 version. A cut version of the scherzo of this version was used in the first recording of this symphony, by Fritz Zaun.
The first commercial recording of part of the symphony was made by Fritz Zaun with the Berlin State Opera Orchestra in 1934. It contained only a cut version of the scherzo, in the 1892 first published edition.
The oldest surviving complete performance is by Georg-Ludwig Jochum with the Bruckner Orchestra of Linz. It dates from 1944 and uses the Haas edition.
The first commercial recording was by Volkmar Andreae with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra in 1953, also using the Haas edition. The first recording on Hybrid SACD was by Simone Young conducting the Hamburg Philharmonic.
Franz Konwitschny conducting the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, live performance, 1951, Berlin Classics (Haas edition of the 1877 version)
Horst Stein conducting the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, studio recording, 1973, Decca/London (Haas edition of the 1877 version)
Carlo Maria Giulini conducting the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, studio recording, 1974, Testament (Nowak edition of the 1877 version)
Eugen Jochum conducting the Staatskapelle Dresden, studio recording, 1980, EMI (Nowak edition of the 1877 version)
Herbert von Karajan conducting the Berliner Philharmoniker, studio recording, 1981, Deutsche Grammophon (1872/1876 rev.)
Georg Tintner conducting the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, studio recording, 1996, Naxos (Carrigan edition, 1872 version)
Stanisław Skrowaczewski conducting the Saarbrucken Radio Symphony Orchestra, studio recording, 1999 (Arte Nova/Oehms Classics) (1877/Haas version)