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Ostrčil: Jack’s Kingdom

Ostrčil: Jack’s Kingdom


Ostrčil:

Jack’s Kingdom

Ivo Žídek, Jaroslava Vymazalová & Přemysl Kočí

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Krizova cesta (Calvary or The Way of the Cross): Variations for large orchestra, Op. 24

Prague Symphony Orchestra, Václav Jiráček


A unique recording of the undeservedly overlooked opera on CD for the very first time.

Recorded in Prague in the Czech Radio, January 1954 (Jack's Kingdom), and at the Rudolfinum, November 19, 20 and 24, 1957 (Calvary).

The complete recording of Jack’s Kingdom, the final opera by Otakar Ostrčil (1879-1935), a remarkable fairy-tale work with an antiwar message, is now being released on CD for the first time.

It is based on L. N. Tolstoy’s short story about a land ruled by the good-natured Ivan (transformed in the opera into Honza, or Jack) who knows not what spite is. In his kingdom, soldiers do not wage wars, yet dance and love, all diseases are cured and people are happy. Honza brings to all the people the miraculous star of compassion, love and peace, possessing so great a power that it even cures the incurable Princess and prevails over the Devil himself. When the opera was premiered in Brno (1934) and subsequently presented in Prague, it gave rise to a conflict between Ostrčil and a part of Czech society.

The present CD features the one and only studio recording of the opera, made in 1954 by the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, with Ivo Žídek, Jaroslava Vymazalová and Přemysl Kočí singing the lead roles. The CD also contains a unique recording of Ostrčil’s Calvary, Op. 24, made in 1957 by the Czech Philharmonic, conducted by Václav Neumann.

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JS Bach: Harpsichord Concertos

JS Bach: Harpsichord Concertos


Bach, J S:

Keyboard Concertos Nos. 1-7 BWV1052-1058


Zuzana Růžičková (harpsichord) & Miloslav Klement, Karel Klement (recorder)

Prague Chamber Soloists, Václav Neumann

Recorded in Prague at the Rudolfinum, December 19–23, 1966 (Concertos Nos 3 and 4), June 27–28, 1967 (No. 6), June 30, 1967 (No. 7), July 1, 1967 (No. 5), September 14 and 19, 1968 (Nos 1 and 2)

Bach saved my life… You always feel in his music that God is present somehow.” This is not empty declamation. It is a deep confession of harpsichord player Zuzana Růžičková, a survivor of the inconceivable horrors of the Nazi concentration camps. She always felt that Bach’s music was one of the things that helped her survive.

Zuzana Růžičková gave new life to Bach’s music by persistently promoting the use of harpsichord (as opposed to commonly used piano) in performing Bach repertoire in concert. She was the very first person to initiate the gigantic project of recording the complete harpsichord concertos composed by Bach.

Zuzana Růžičková understands the deep inner order and the hidden emotionality of Bach’s music so well that her recordings of his works remain no less inspiring at the present time.

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Viktor Kalabis: Symphonies and Concertos

Viktor Kalabis: Symphonies and Concertos


Kalabis:

Symphony No. 2 'Sinfonia pacis' for Large Orchestra, Op. 18

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Zdeněk Košler

Concerto No. 1 for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 17

Petr Škvor (violin)

Prague Symphony Orchestra, Viktor Kalabis

Symphonic Variations for Large Orchestra, Op. 24

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Concerto for Large Orchestra (Concerto per grande orchestra), Op. 25

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Ladislav Slovák

Symphony No. 3 for Large Orchestra, Op. 33

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Jiří Bělohlávek

Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra 'Le tambour de villevieille', Op. 36

Miroslav Kejmar (trumpet)

Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, Miloš Konvalinka

Concerto for Harpsichord and Strings, Op. 42

Zuzana Růžičková (harpsichord)

Prague Chamber Orchestra, Viktor Kalabis

Concerto No. 2 for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 49

Josef Suk (violin)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Wolfgang Sawallisch

Concerto for Piano and Wind Instruments, Op. 64

Milan Langer (piano)

Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, Tomáš Koutník

Concertino for Bassoon and Wind Instruments, Op. 61

Jiří Formáček (bassoon)

Czech Philharmonic Wind Ensemble, Miloš Formáček


To mark the 90th anniversary of the birth of Viktor Kalabis, one of the most distinguished 20th-century Czech composers, Supraphon is releasing this special selection of his symphonies and concertos. The life of Kalabis and his wife, the renowned harpsichordist Zuzana Růžičková, was first afflicted by war and subsequently by the straitjacket of the Communist regime. The two forms of lack of freedom would have a marked impact on Kalabis’s work.

His Sinfonia pacis, one of the most frequently performed contemporary Czech pieces abroad, reflects the escalating tensions of the Cold War, without the composer succumbing to the clichés of the Communist “peace” proclamations. In connection with Symphony No. 3 (1970-71), its creator talked about the anxiety prevailing during the post-occupation years, defiance, as well as the final resignation beneath the unceasing suppression of truth. Kalabis’s works duly enjoyed the attention of renowned orchestras, conductors and soloists (the Berliner Philharmoniker, Matačić, Casadesus, Blomstedt, Rilling, Ančerl, etc.). This new selection of recordings bears witness to a superlative composer, as well as the dark atmosphere of the time during which this music came to life. Viktor Kalabis’s symphonies and concertos – the legacy of a distinct composer and a fraught era.

“there is no doubting the quality of all these musicians, Supraphon's original engineering or Kalabis's profound, stirring music” MusicWeb International, 13th May 2013

“this excellent collection, despite the variable age and quality of some recordings, will do very nicely in bringing [Kalabis's] name before a wider audience” Gramophone Magazine, July 2013

GGramophone Magazine

Re-issue of the Month - July 2013

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Jean-Pierre Rampal in Prague – The Complete Supraphon Recordings

Jean-Pierre Rampal in Prague – The Complete Supraphon Recordings


Benda, Franz:

Sonata for Flute and Harpsichord in F major

Viktorie Švihlíková (harpsichord)

Flute Concerto in E minor

Prague Chamber Orchestra, Milan Munclinger

Feld:

Flute Concerto

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Jiráček

Prokofiev:

Flute Sonata in D major, Op. 94

Alfréd Holeček (piano)

Richter, F X:

Sonate da camera No. 3 in A major

Viktorie Švihlíková (harpsichord)

Flute Concerto in D major

Prague Chamber Orchestra, Milan Munclinger

Rosetti:

Flute Concerto in D major

Prague Chamber Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Stamitz, C:

Flute Concerto in G major, Op. 29

Prague Chamber Orchestra, Martin Turnovský


Jean Pierre Rampal (flute)

Golden memories of Jean-Pierre Rampal’s time in Prague – legendary recordings, newly digitally remastered.

During his very first trip across the Iron Curtain, the French flautist Jean-Pierre Rampal (1922–2000), made friends with Milan Munclinger, an outstanding Czech musician, with whom he shared a passion for Baroque music. Owing to Munclinger’s initiative, on 31 May 1955 Rampal performed alongside the pianist Alfred Holecek before the packed auditorium within the Prague Spring festival. The very next day, Rampal made the first in his series of recordings for Supraphon, which featured Prokofiev’s Sonata. Until 1956, he made premiere recordings of sonatas by František Benda and F. X. Richter, concertos by Carl Stamitz and F. A. Rosetti, as well as, and most significantly – with the Prague Chamber Orchestra conducted by Munclinger – concertos by Richter and Benda. The latter two were extraordinary indeed, as evidenced by the international critical acclaim: the album went on to receive the prestigious Grand Prix du Disque de l’Académie Charles Cros.

Rampal’s final Supraphon album, made with the Czech Philharmonic in April 1958, contains the flute concerto by the then 33-year-old Jindrich Feld, who primarily gained global recognition thanks to Rampal. The phenomenal French flautist would continue to come to Prague in the following years to give concerts and to meet his close friends among Czech musicians.

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Dvorak: Sacred Works & Cantatas

Dvorak: Sacred Works & Cantatas


Dvorak:

Ave Maria, Op. 19b

Ave maris stella

Biblical Songs (10), Op. 99

Hymnus ad laudes in festo SS. Trinitatis

Mass in D major, Op.86 (B175)

O sanctissima, Op. 19a

Psalm 149 Op. 79 (B.154)

Requiem, Op. 89

Saint Ludmila

Stabat Mater, Op. 58

Te Deum, Op.103, B.176

The Heirs of the White Mountain, Op. 30, B134

Svatební Kosile, Op. 69


Eva Urbanova (soprano), Vera Soukupova (alto), Beno Blachut (tenor), Jindrich Jindrak, Ivan Kusnjer (baritone), Peter Mikulas, Richard Novak (bass), Ivan Moravec (piano)

Prague Philharmonic Choir, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra & Prague Symphony Orchestra, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Vaclav Neumann, Jiri Belohlavek, Vaclav Smetacek, Zdenek Kosler

“Dad’s God was not the God of Vengeance but the Creator, who sanctifies the journey through the ‘valley of death’ through his infinite love”, is how Antonín Dvořák’s sincere piety was recalled by his son Otakar. Faith in God was for Dvořák the cornerstone on which he built his own life and work, hence it comes as no surprise that a number of his seminal pieces are within the domain of sacred music, and frequently linked with a strong personal story.

The first version of the oratorio Stabat Mater came into being after the death of his first-born daughter. In the wake of the triumph of its London premiere, Dvořák received more commissions from the UK, which gave rise to other paramount compositions: The Spectre’s Bride, Requiem and Saint Ludmila.

The instigation for the Te Deum came from New York, where following the premiere of the 'New World Symphony' Dvořák wrote the Biblical Songs, the apex of his oeuvre of this genre. The set also contains pieces that have been seldom performed (the cantata The Heirs of the White Mountain, Psalm 149 in the previously unreleased recording made by the conductor Václav Neumann, etc.).

At the same time, this new collection within the Dvořák series showcases superlative artists, and the listeners will undoubtedly also be pleased by the sensitively remastered sound of the recordings.

These are gems from the Supraphon archive.

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Supraphon Archiv - SU41872

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Václav Neumann: Early Recordings 1953-1968

Václav Neumann: Early Recordings 1953-1968


includes

Dvorak:

Symphony No. 1 in C minor, B9 'The Bells of Zlonice'

Symphony No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 4

Symphony No. 4 in D minor, Op. 13

Rondo in G minor for cello & orchestra, Op. 94, B. 181

Nocturne in B major for strings, Op.40 (B47)

Grieg:

Lyric Suite, Op. 54

Peer Gynt Suites Nos. 1 & 2

Mahler:

Kindertotenlieder

Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (4 songs, complete)

Messiaen:

Oiseaux exotiques

Le Réveil des oiseaux

Roussel:

Symphony No. 3 in G minor, Op. 42

Schubert:

Symphony No. 3 in D major, D200

Symphony No. 8 in B minor, D759 'Unfinished'

Tchaikovsky:

The Seasons, Op. 37b


Věra Soukupová (alto), Yvonne Loriod (piano) & Josef Chuchro (cello)

Prague Symphony Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra & Film Symphony Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Under his baton, the splendid Prague Symphony Orchestra made the very oldest recordings of Dvořák’s early symphonies (Nos. 1, 2 and 4), a recording of Trojan’s orchestrated version of Tchaikovsky’s The Seasons, while the Czech Philharmonic recorded Mahler’s enchanting song cycles and major international and Czech modern works – by Messiaen (with the composer’s wife Yvonne Loriod on the piano), Bořkovec and Sommer. This selection is symbolically rounded off by Dvořák’s Nocturne, recorded by Neumann with the Czech Philharmonic in 1968, just a few weeks after the invasion of Czechoslovakia by the Warsaw Pact forces. A number of these unique and sensitively remastered recordings are being released on CD for the very first time.

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Supraphon - SU41332

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Dvořák: Orchestral Works & Concertos

Dvořák: Orchestral Works & Concertos


Dvorak:

Slavonic Dances Nos. 1-8, Op. 46 Nos. 1-8

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Three Slavonic Dances, Op. 72

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Slavonic Rhapsodies (3), Op. 45

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Bohumil Gregor

The Hero's Song, Op. 111

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Bohumil Gregor

Legends, Op. 59

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir Charles Mackerras

Scherzo capriccioso, Op. 66

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir Charles Mackerras

My Home Overture, Op. 62

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Hussite Overture, Op. 67

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Czech Suite, Op. 39

Prague Philharmonia, Jakub Hruša

Festival March in C major, Op. 54

Prague Symphony Orchestra, Jirí Belohlávek

Prague Waltzes, B99

Prague Symphony Orchestra, Jirí Belohlávek

Polka in B flat major, Op. 53a/1 'For Prague Students'

Prague Symphony Orchestra, Jirí Belohlávek

Polonaise in E flat major for orchestra, B100

Prague Philharmonia, Jakub Hruša

American Suite in A major, Op. 98a(b)

Prague Philharmonia, Jakub Hruša

Serenade for Winds in D minor, Op. 44

Prague Philharmonia, Jakub Hruša

Serenade for Strings in E major, Op. 22

Prague Philharmonia, Jakub Hruša

Nocturne in B major for strings, Op.40 (B47)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Cello Concerto in A major, B10

Instrumentation Jarmil Burghauser, revision of the cello part Miloš Sádlo

Miloš Sádlo (cello)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Piano Concerto in G minor, Op. 33

Ivan Moravec (piano)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Jirí Belohlávek

Romance in F minor, Op. 11

Václav Hudecek (violin)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Jirí Belohlávek

Mazurek for violin and orchestra, Op. 49 (B89)

Václav Hudecek (violin)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Jirí Belohlávek

Violin Concerto in A minor, Op. 53

Josef Suk (violin)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Waldesruhe (Silent woods) for cello and orchestra, Op. 68 No. 5

Miloš Sádlo (cello)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Rondo in G minor for cello & orchestra, Op. 94, B. 181

Miloš Sádlo (cello)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann

Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104

Miloš Sádlo (cello)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Václav Neumann


Collectors and admirers of Dvořák’s music bearing the hallmark of the Czech performance tradition can now add another comprehensive album to put alongside the previous complete Supraphon CDs mapping his chamber (SU38152, SU39212), piano (SU40182) and symphonic works (SU40902). The acclaimed recording of the symphonies, conducted by Václav Neumann, is now followed by Supraphon’s 8-CD box set featuring Dvořák’s orchestral pieces and concertos. In addition to the celebrated Slavonic Dances, it contains a number of rarely recorded symphonic works (the Hussite Overture, My Home, A Hero’s Song), as well as splendid compositions for chamber and string orchestras. Besides recordings made under the baton of Neumann, it provides scope to other great Dvořák conductors – Mackerras, Bělohlávek and the rising star Jakub Hrůša. The set of orchestral works is rounded off by recordings of concertos, ranging from the virtually unknown Cello Concerto in A major, written by the young Dvořák, to the most frequently performed, the Cello Concerto in B minor. Supraphon has again carefully put together top-quality and time-honoured recordings of works performed by world-renowned soloists.

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Dvorak: Symphonic Works

Dvorak: Symphonic Works


Dvorak:

Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Symphonic Variations, Op. 78

In Nature's Realm Overture, Op. 91

Carnival Overture, Op. 92

Othello Overture, Op. 93

The Water Goblin, Op. 107 (B195)

The Noon Witch, Op. 108 (B196)

The Golden Spinning Wheel, Op. 109

The Wild Dove, Op. 110 (B198)


Few other composers’ music enjoys such enormous popularity and is as frequently performed on stages worldwide and recorded as that of Antonín Dvořák. And it is the symphonic works that are connected with his name most often.

The new Supraphon eight-disc box features several complete sets and encompasses Dvořák’s most significant symphonic pieces. Alongside the Symphonic Poems and Concert Overtures, Supraphon is releasing for the first time on CD Václav Neumann’s sensitively remastered 1972-74 analogue recordings of the complete symphonies (until now, only the digital recordings from the 1980s had been released on CD). Václav Neumann linked up to the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra’s bold Dvořák tradition in the wake of his illustrious predecessors Václav Talich and Karel Ančerl and developed it in sonic colourfulness and romantic sweep.

Following two complete sets of chamber works (the Panocha Quartet etc., SU38152, SU39212) and the complete essential piano pieces (Radoslav Kvapil, SU40182), you can now add to your music library another of the “worlds” of Dvořák’s amazing oeuvre, in a highly acclaimed interpretation with the seal of the Czech Dvořák tradition. The complete Dvořák symphonic works with Václav Neumann’s romantic sweep – for the first time on CD.

“The Symphonic Variations are an outstanding display of musical and orchestral finesse. In the Symphonic Poems Neumann is able to combine Talich’s symphonic strength with Chalabala’s story-telling gifts...[the set] demonstrates that the Neumann era did not bring about a decline in either Dvor(ák interpretation in Prague or in the standards of the Czech PO, which is magnificent throughout.” MusicWeb International, December 2012

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Supraphon - SU40902

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Hommage a Zuzana Růžičkova

Hommage a Zuzana Růžičkova


Bach, J S:

Chromatic Fantasia & Fugue in D minor, BWV903

French Suite No. 5 in G major, BWV816

Keyboard Concerto in G major (after Vivaldi), BWV980

Cabezón, A:

Capricho

Couperin, F:

Vive le neveu

Falla:

Concerto for Harpsichord & Chamber Ensemble

Martinu:

Concerto for Harpsichord and Small Orchestra

Scarlatti, D:

Keyboard Sonata K519 in F minor

Keyboard Sonata K19 in F major

Keyboard Sonata K278 in D major

Keyboard Sonata K375 in G major

Keyboard Sonata K8 in G minor

Keyboard Sonata K70 in B flat major

Keyboard Sonata K1 in D minor

Keyboard Sonata K63 in G major

Keyboard Sonata K406 in C major

Keyboard Sonata K11 in C minor

plus:

Capricho (a Antonio Cabezon, 1510–1566) 1:02

Vive le neveu (a Francois Couperin, 1631-1698) 1:46


Zuzana Růžičkova (harpsichord)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra & Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra, Kurt Sanderling & Vaclav Neumann

Zuzana Růžičkova, an exceptional personality upon whom the critics conferred the title “First Lady of the Harpsichord”, continued the pioneering efforts Wanda Landowska had made to get the harpsichord recognised as an independent concert instrument. The path she took was co-determined by her lifelong relationship to Bach, whose complete works for harpsichord she has recorded, and along it she was also accompanied by a number of friends she regularly met: Karel Ančerl, Gideon Klein, Sviatoslav Richter, Josef Suk.

She hasn’t, however, remained merely a Bach specialist: in addition to early music, she has recorded all the classic modern harpsichord works, including Poulenc’s Concert champetre and her beloved Bohuslav Martinů’s Concerto for Harpsichord, awareness of which she helped to raise all over the world. A number of pieces have been written directly for Zuzana Růžičkova, among them compositions by Jan Rychlik and the remarkable Sei invenzioni canonici per cembalo by Viktor Kalabis, whom the harpsichordist was married to for over half a century.

This representative selection from Zuzana Růžičkova’s highly acclaimed discography is Supraphon’s way of marking her 80th birthday. The overwhelming majority of these recordings are appearing on CD for the very first time. The perfect way to mark Zuzana Růžičkova’s 80th birthday – a harpsichord feast ranging from Bach to the 20th century.

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Supraphon - SU41172

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Bohemian Impressions

Bohemian Impressions


Dvorak:

Czech Suite, Op. 39: Preludium & Romance

In Nature's Realm Overture, Op. 91

Fibich:

At Twilight, Symphonic Poem for Orchestra, Op. 39

Janacek:

Pilky (No. 6 from Lachian Dances)

The Cunning Little Vixen: Introduction

Martinu:

Bouquet of Flowers. A cycle of Compositions to Folk Texts for Mixed (Children´s) Choirs, Soloists and Small Orchestra, H. 260

Novák, V:

Slovácká svita, Op. 32: The Amorous Couple

Slovácká svita, Op. 32: The Country Musicians

Smetana:

Má Vlast: Z ceských luhu a háju

Suk:

A Summer's Tale, Op. 29: Intermezzo – Blind Musicians


The names of Bedřich Smetana, Antonín Dvořák, Leoš Janáček and Bohuslav Martinů are rightly synonymous with the global fame of Czech music. And it was frequently the compositions inspired by the beauty of the beloved homeland (and its folk music) that brought its creators to the attention of listeners worldwide.

A case in point is Smetana’s My Country, yet other composers too reflected the land of their heart, its natural and folk motifs in their works (Janáček’s Lachian Dances, Novák’s Moravian-Slovak Suite, Dvořák’s Czech Suite, Martinů’s Bouquet of Flowers, etc.). Bohemian Impressions is a selection of the most beautiful melodies that grew out of this inspiration – a gallery of images and reminiscences from the places where one feels most alive and keeps returning to.

Amid the wide harmonies – how wide are the horizons seen from the Vysočina hills? – flash the sparks of lively colours with which a composer let himself be carried away by the rhythms of folk dances at a village ball. This is a musical landscape singing of love, colours, scents and tranquillity; a landscape in which you will feel alive. The most beautiful music from Bohemian fields and groves – a landscape of the heart to which we keep returning.

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Supraphon - SU40582

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