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This CD brings together two superstars of the last 50 years, Sir Georg Solti and the great Swedish soprano Birgit Nilsson. The release was originally timed to coincide with the 10th anniversary (2007) of Solti's death and his 10 years spent at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden – but was delayed a year due to contractual negotiations - both the Wagner tracks are with the Covent Garden Orchestra, as it was known then, at the Proms in 1963.
Solti's Beethoven is well known for its robust energy but this version of the 'Eroica' with the LSO is quite relaxed yet powerful and extremely beautiful. It comes from the same concert as the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1 with Cherkassky (BBCL 4160-2).
Solti and Nilsson were linked both on stage and particularly in the recording studio by Richard Strauss and Wagner. Solti's famous Wagner's 'Ring' cycle for Decca has been one of the monuments of the classical recording industry for many years and Nilsson's Brunnhilde is one of the phenomenon's of that celebrated set. She is here recorded live with a passionate accompaniment driven by Solti in the great Prelude & Liebestod from Wagner's Tristan und Isolde where Nilsson's voice is so powerful that it dominates the ROH Orchestra even in the greatest climaxes!
Wagner's Siegfried's Rhine Journey gives us a flavour of Solti in Wagner's 'Ring' providing tremendous attack and excitement.
The CD has been recorded in excellent stereo sound and transferred with exceptional care by Paul Baily.
Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 in E flat major, Op. 55, "Eroica"
I. Allegro con brio
II. Marcia funebre: Adagio assai
III. Scherzo: Allegro vivace
IV. Finale: Allegro molto
Richard Wagner: Gotterdammerung (Twilight of the Gods)
Act III: Mild und leise wie er lachelt, "Isolde's Liebestod"
“…Solti treated Beethoven's Eroica as a broad-based epic, the first movement measured and expressive in the Bruno Walter style, the Funeral March slow of gait and solemn of visage. …the two final movements were drawn into the concept making for a reading that was powerful, concentrated, entire unto itself. The playing in Siegfried's Rhine Journey is terrific...”