Monday, January 17, 2011

Great conductors of the 20TH century EMI VOL.9 - Erich Kleiber

CD1 [68:10]

Schubert: Symphony No.5

Sinfonieorchester des Norddeutschen Rundfunks; Musikhalle, Hamburg (Live); January 1953

Beethoven: Symphony No.6 'Pastoral'

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra; Smetana Hall, Prague (Live); May 1955

CD2 [67:47]

Mozart: Symphony No.40

London Philharmonic Orchestra; Kingsway Hall, London; April 1949

R. Strauss: Till Eulenspiegel

Sinfonieorchester des Norddeutschen Rundfunks; Musikhalle, Hamburg (Live); January 1953

Dvorák: 'Carnival' Overture

Josef Strauss: Sphärenklänge (Walzer)

Johann Strauss: Der Zigeunerbaron: Overture

London Philharmonic Orchestra; Kingsway Hall, London; February 1948

Johann Strauss: Du und Du (Walzer)

Wiener Philharmoniker; Konzerthaus, Vienna; February 1929


Born in Vienna in 1890, Erich Kleiber studied in Prague, where he became chorus master at the German Theatre in 1911. From 1912 to 1919 he was in Darmstadt and then took increasingly important positions at Barmen-Elberfeld, Düsseldorf and Mannheim. In 1923 he was appointed music director of the Berlin State Opera, and over the next 11 years he directed many notable new productions, including Janácek's Jenufa and the world premiere of Berg's Wozzeck. After the advent of Nazi rule, Kleiber left Germany and settled in Argentina. He worked with several South American orchestras and opera companies, and continued to visit Europe until World War II. After the war he returned to the main continental centres and conducted with distinction at the Royal Opera House in London. He made a brief return to the Berlin State Opera in 1954-5, and died suddenly in Zürich in January 1956. Kleiber made numerous recordings between 1921 and 1955, with ensembles including the Vienna, Berlin and London Philharmonic Orchestras.
For collectors, there are three live performances in this compilation - Schubert's Symphony No.5 and Strauss's Till Eulenspiegel with the NDR Symphony Orchestra, Hamburg (1953), and Beethoven's 'Pastoral' Symphony with the Czech Philharmonic (1955) - none of which have been issued commercially before. The Strauss and the Schubert are not duplicated by studio recordings, so these performances will prove especially valuable for Kleiber completists. In addition, there are three very rare commercial recordings, not available since their original release on 78s: Dvorák's 'Carnival' Overture, Josef Strauss's Sphärenklänge Waltz and the Overture to Der Zigeunerbaron, all from 1948 and with the London Philharmonic. These important recordings have been remastered from 78s held in a private collection. The recording of Mozart's Symphony No.40 (from 1949) has not been available on CD for many years and it too has been carefully remastered.


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