Nimbus Records on Facebook Nimbus Records on Twitter Nimbus Records on YouTube



buy online with ClassicOnline

Beethoven Symphony No.3 The Eroica



"Butt moves along the leadoff Allegro con brio at a commendably energetic pace, with brio, with vigor and vivacity. Just as he will do throughout the symphony. Butt emphnasizes the contrasts: fast and slow, loud and soft.  Not matter, as he ensures the work ends on a high note."
Classical Candor by John J. Puccio

Beethoven Symphony No.3 The Eroica


Yondani Butt was born in Macau. He studied music at Indiana University and the University of Michigan. He also has a Ph.D. in Chemistry, on which subject he has published numerous research papers. As founder of Symphonie Canadiana, he has led the orchestra on major tours throughout North America. In addition, since 1983, he has held the position of Resident Conductor of the Victoria International Festival, creating the highly successful Concerti Extravaganza series. Frequently in demand as a guest conductor, Yondani Butt has recorded and performed in the US, Canada, Latin America, Asia and Europe. He has conducted the Philharmonia Orchestra of London, London Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, American Symphony, Hamilton Philharmonic of Canada, Orquesta Sinfónica del Estado de Mexico, Singapore Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, Japan Gunma Symphony and Het Gelders Orkest, amongst many others. Yondani Butt received an MRA Gramophone Award in the Symphony Category 1995 for his recording of Glazunov’s Sixth Symphony. He had previously won the same Award in 1986 for Rimsky-Korsakov’s Third Symphony. His recording of Glazunov’s Third Symphony is recognised by the Glazunov Society as definitive and earned him the title of Honorary Patron of the Society.


Is the world really waiting with bated breath for yet another recording of Beethoven's "Eroica" Symphony? Well, actually, no, particularly when there is already a plethora of good recordings available.  However, when we hear a new issue performed and recorded as well as Yondani Butt's version with the London Symphony, it might be enough for Beethoven fans to give it a try.

Butt moves along the leadoff Allegro con brio at a commendably energetic pace, "with brio," with vigor and vivacity as Beethoven marked the tempo. Maybe Butt just understands the chemistry of the music; after all, how many other conductors have a Ph.D. in chemistry as Maestro Butt has. Just as he will do throughout the symphony, Butt emphasizes the contrasts: fast and slow, loud and soft. It makes for an exciting opening segment.

Butt's speed [for the second-movement funeral march] seems at first a tad too hesitant and spongy. However, when he reaches the climax of the movement about three-quarters through, it is another monumental contrast, and it goes a long way toward selling what could have been too soft an approach.

The Scherzo has plenty of zip and skips happily along with its syncopated rhythms. Then, the spirit of the Scherzo leads unaffectedly into the equally vibrant Finale, which Butt treats quite triumphantly...the work ends on a high note, figuratively speaking.

At the time of the Third Symphony's première in 1805, some critics complained about its excessive length. Today, we take such lengths for granted as normal, the symphony having had such an influential impact on music thereafter. Indeed, the symphony's length is rather modest by current standards, so much so that Nimbus Alliance are able to fit four Beethoven overtures on the disc as companion pieces.

The Creatures of Prometheus, Fidelio, King Stephen, and Consecration of the House come off well, with the customary vigorous refinement we have come to expect from Maestro Butt. I especially liked the thrilling vivaciousness of Fidelio and the inevitable contrasts, again, in King Stephen.

What a pleasure, too, listening to a new recording that a company didn't do live. This one Nimbus Alliance recorded at Abbey Road Studio 1 and released in 2011. Along with Symphonies Nos. 6 and 7, issued separately, they figure to be the start of a complete and welcome new Beethoven cycle.