Tchaikovsky: Romeo and Juliet, Nutcracker Suite
Igor Markevitch, conductor
Price range: $27-106, mean $57 on popsike
Comments: Igor Markevitch is one of my favorite conductors of this era and of all time. His interpretations of some of the great Russian orchestral works are among the very best, and I'd say that this performance of Tchaikovsky's Romeo and Juliet Fantasy Overture and Nutcracker Suite is a good example. The Philharmonia is in excellent form here. I would like to say that the sound quality is really superb. I was honestly and pleasantly surprised, and this is a second pressing! Dynamic range is excellent, sound stage is expansive, and clarity is top notch at nearly all dynamic levels (the only exception being in the final measures of the finale of the Nutcracker, which my system was just not quite able to perfectly resolve). Of the Columbia SAXes I've covered so far, this may be one of the best sounding I've heard.