<%@ BEECHAM CONDUCTS Tchaikovsky / Der Rosenkavalier/SchwarzkopfKarajan / Abandroth / Gunter Wand

TCHAIKOVSKY: Francesca da Rimini, Op. 32. Symphony No. 5 in E minor, Op. 64. Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74 Pathétique (excerpts)
London Philharmonic Orchestra / Beecham Symphony Orch. / Sir Thomas Beecham, cond.

STRAUSS: Der Rosenkavalier
Elisabeth Schwarzkopf (Marschallin). Christa Ludwig (Octavian). Teresa Stich-Randall (Sophie). Otto Edelmann (Baron Ochs). Eberhard Wächter (Faninal). Ljuba Welitsch (Marianne). Nicolai Gedda (A Singer). Philharmonia Chorus and Orchestra / Herbert von Karajan, cond.
PRISTINE CLASSICAL PACO 156 (3 disks) TT: 3 hr. 11:57

BRUCKNER: Symphony No. 4 in E flat "Romantic." Symphony No. 5 in B flat. Symphony No 7 in E. Symphony No. 9 in D minor. BRAHMS: Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68. Variations on a Theme by Haydn. Tragic Overture,. Symphony No 3 in F, Op 90. BEETHOVEN: Romance in C, Op. 40. Violin Concerto in D, Op. 61. Symphony No. 3 in E flat, Op 55 "Eroica." Symphony No.6 in F, Op. 68 "Pastorale." Symphony No 7 in A, Op. 92. Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 "Chorale."
Leipzig Radio Orchestra / Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra / Czech Philharmonic Orchestra / Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra / Hermann Abendroth, cond.
PROFIL ph 19000 (10 disks)

BACH: Violin Concerto in A minor (Roland Greutter, NDR) (Marh 1992). HAYDN: Piano Conerto in D (Nikita Magaloff. NDR) (December 1985). Oboe Concerro in C (Hansjorg Schellenbacher, WDR) (January 1980). Symphony No 76 in E flat (WDR) (February 1973). MOZART: Piano Concerto No. 20 K 466 (Rudolf Firkusny. WDR) (September 1969). Horn Concerto No. 3, K. 447 (Dennis Brain. WDR) (January 1951). STRAUSS: Horn Concerto No. 1 (Hermann Baumann, WDR) (October 1975). BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No 4, Op. 58 (Robert Casadesus, WDR) (March 1970). Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat, Op. 73 (Emil Gilels, WDR) (December 1974). BRAHMS: Serenade in D Op. 11 (WDR) (October 1968). WEBER: Clarinet Concerto , Op. 74 (Helmut Gieber. WDR) (November 1977). TCHAIKOVSKY: Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 23 (Jorge Bolet, NDR (November 1985). PROKOFIEV: Violin Concerto No 1, Op. 19 (Edith Peuinemann. Bavarian Radio Orch.) (January 1983). SAINT-SAËNS: Violin Concerto No 3, Op. 61 (Ruggiero Ricci. WDR December 1970). BERLIOZ: Roman Crnival Overture. CHERUBINI: Anacreon Overture. MOZART: Overtures: Cosi fan tutte. The Mgic Flute. The Marriage of Figaro (WRD)
PROFIL PH 19002 (6 disks)

Sir Thomas Beecham (1879 - 1961) was an amazing musician. He conducted a diversified repertory including standard classics, British composers (pariularly Delius) and more modern nusic s well Surprisingly, he recorded relatively little litle chaikovsky: Symphonies 2, 3, and 4, and excerpts from Eugene Onegin. Thus this Pristine issue is of particular interest as we can now hear his interpretations of two major Tchaikovsky works, Symphony No. 5, and Francesca da Rimini ; Symphony 5 was recorded in sessions December 18, 1939 and January 4, 1940; F was recorded December 7 and 19, 1939. receives a dramatic reading, the symphony is less exciting. Of particuoar interest here are gtruncated versions of the middle movement of Symphony No. 6 recorded acoustically in 1915 with a small ensemble called "Beecham Symphony Orchestra." Thin acoustic audio as one might expet. Producer Mark Obert-Thorn advises in his program notes that Beecham also recorded truncated versions of the first and last movements three years later, but these never were released andhave been lost. This is an important issue for admirers of Sir Thomas, his only recordings of ththis music. MOT has done what fan be done to make the rather poor harsh recordings listenable.

This definitive performance was recorded 10 - 15 and 17 - 22, December 1956 in the warm acoustics of London's Kingsway Hll. It has been reissued a number of times, but here we have its finest reincarnation. Andrew Rose has remastered the original mono sound and the result is a very realistic, warm balance that obnveys this superb performance with the greatest Marschallin, a young Christa Ludwig as Octabian, Teresa Stich-Randall as an exquidite Sophie, and the luxury of Ljuba Welitsch as Marianne. Years later, Karajan would make another reording of this opera, but it cannot match the perfection of the 1956 version which as presented here is the one to have.

German conductor Hermann Abendroth (1883 - 1956) had a distinguished career although he never reached internatial fame. Most of his career was in Germany and he conducted often in Munich, Cologne , Essen and Berlin as well as London. Abendroth also conducted two seasons at Bayreuth. He also was respected as a teacher, particularly in Leipzig. Few of his recordings currently are available, so this Profil issue is important. It offers four symphonies of Bruckner, three new to the catalog. Also of major interest is the live performances of Beethoven's Romance in G and Violin Concerto with David Oistrakh recorded at a concert March 31, 1952 with the Berlin Symphony. The presentation is disappointing. The 10 CDs are in a box and each has its own paper jacket—which is sealed - talk about inconvenience! The 8-page booklet focuses on details of the performances. Audio generally is clear enough to convey the performances. This is a mid-price issue.

Günter Wand (1912 - 2002) was one of the most respected German conductors of the area. He was known for his opera performances and played a major role in the musical life of Cologne. He resorded profusely, ifor RCA he recorded all of the symphonies of Bruckner, Schubert and xxxx. He appeared often with the with the WDR Sykmphony and the NDR Symphony, both featured on this new release. Actuaoly this issue is redundent; all of these performances have been issued before: here the focus is on performances tht featured soloists. Audio is always acceptable, and perhaps some colletors will wish to have these live performances by Casadesus, Gilels, Bolet, Peinemann and others, particularly at budget price.

R.E.B. (October 2019)