BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 3 in E flat, Op. 55 "Eroica." Coriolan Overture,
Op. 62. BRAHMS: Academic
Festival Overture, Op. 80.
MAHLER: Symphony No. 2 in C minor "Resurrection."
Here are two major additions to the Stokowski discograpohy. restoring to the catalog majr performances otherwise unavailable. The first contains the Maesstro' ony recordings of three works. This Eroica is a beauty. It finds Stokowski in a rather relaxed mood yet there is plenty of power with aa particularly radient finale. The London Symphony plays magnificently for him and the recording made in London's famous Walthamstow Hall in March 1974, emgomeered by Robert Auger, is uncommonly rich and detailed. The four audio tracks are utilizerd effectively providing an ideal listening position. The other works also were recorded in the same venue at the same time, but the Brahms is with the New Philharmonia Orchestra, engineeedg by Anthony Salvatore.
Throughout his career Stokowski championed music of Mahler although he made only one commercial recording. He attended the 1910 Munich premiere of Symphony No. 8, and gave the American premiere in Philadelphia in 1916.Colletors treasure his 1950 broadcast of Symphony No. 8 with the New York Philharmonic. In 1974 he made this RCA recording of Symphony No. 2. The BBC Proms concert from Royal Albert Hall July 30, 1963 featured Symphony No. 2. It was quite an occasion. At the triumphant ending after many curtain calls, Stokowski came on stage and asked if the audience would like an "encore." They did and Stokowski repeated the finale of the symphony!!! Quite a special occasion, indeed. This live performance was issued on BBC Legends and in 2003 this site praised it (REVIEW). This is BBC Legends BBC4156, and it might be difficult to find. That 1963 concert opened with Stokowski's arrangement of Bach's Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor. Hopefully eventually there will be a new release that would include the Bach-Stokowski as well as the repeat of the Mahler Resurrection finale. We can hope. This performance also previously was issued on Music & Arts (885). There also was a live Phlade;phia Orchestra performance from November 9 1967 on the Memories label (HR 4495/4497).
Stokowski's Mahler is majestic and builds to the expected grand finale. This Symphony No. 2 took two quad disks (ARD2-952), but on this new quad version it takes only a single disk with maximum playing time (80:33). Anthony Salvatore was engineer and was very imaginative in microphone placement. Instruments are heard from all four sides, always well-balanced and with some effective spatial effects. Audiophiles will surely not be disappointed. Texts and translations are included. This is essential in any SACD collection.
R.E.B. (February 2021)