Beethoven: Symphony No. 6 in F major, Op. 68 'Pastoral'

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Beethoven: 9 Symphonies

Beethoven: 9 Symphonies

Between The Enlightenment And Revolution


Beethoven:

Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

The Creatures of Prometheus, Op. 43: excerpts

Egmont Incidental Music, Op. 84 (excerpts)

Grosse Fuge in B flat major, Op. 133


In the years 1800-1830, the interplay of internal social forces and the new order in Europe created significant changes in people’s experience and values, and formed a new image in the contemporary consciousness, based on themes inherited from the Enlightenment, apprehended afresh in a new image of humanity and a new representation of society and the world. It was for this “new humanity” that Beethoven composed his music, and in it he saw his duty as an artist and the ultimate truth of his art.

This is especially true of his nine symphonies, recorded here by the OSM, conducted by Kent Nagano.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Analekta - AN291505

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1 - 9

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1 - 9


Beethoven:

Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Elisabeth Söderström (soprano), Regina Resnik (mezzo-soprano), Jon Vickers (tenor) & David Ward (bass)

London Bach Choir, London Symphony Orchestra, Wiener Philharmoniker, Wiener Philharmoniker

Fidelio Overture Op. 72c

London Symphony Orchestra

Egmont Overture, Op. 84

London Symphony Orchestra

König Stephan Overture, Op. 117

London Symphony Orchestra

Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 'Choral'

Rehearsal

Wiener Philharmoniker

plus:

La Marseillaise (Rouget de Lisle)


Monteux’s Beethoven has been described as visionary. Respect for the spirit of the score, directness of expression, exceptionally well-drilled playing and a sense of untainted idealism that lay at the very heart of the composer’s vision – these are the qualities that typify Monteux’s interpretation of Beethoven. Eight of the symphonies were recorded for Decca; the Ninth for Westminster; and the third (Eroica) again, for Philips. Together with the rehearsal for the Ninth and an impromptu in-studio performance of La Marseillaise, they form the most complete collection of Monteux’s Beethoven recordings. Other conductors may have offered a more personalised take on the music, but none made it more universal or more human. The fascinating accompanying notes to the set are by Rob Cowan and the recordings have been remastered for this release.

“the sound is excellent […] the finale has beautifully light pointing and delicate playing from the Vienna Philharmonic” Gramophone Magazine, December 1970 (No. 6)

“the first movement has a genuine sense of flow […] The Decca transfer is smoother than the RCA original” Gramophone Magazine, July 1971 (No. 3)

“the development has genuine tension, accents are light and the strings have just the right weight of tone […] the playing of the Vienna strings is splendidly alert and sensitive” Gramophone Magazine, March 1972 (Nos. 1 & 8)

“straightforward and lively, very well played … the performance communicates a genuine sense of enjoyment” Gramophone Magazine, March 1973 (No. 4)

“A lively, slightly lightweight performance, reaching its zenith in the finale […] the recording is bright and quite full” Gramophone Magazine, March 1982 (No. 7)

“Monteux’s version of Beethoven’s Second Symphony is immensely likeable and I cannot think of another version more liveable with. It has freshness and buoyancy […] The sound too is admirable – clear and lively, yet truthful in perspective and with no lack of body.” Gramophone Magazine, March 1982 (No. 2)

“this is a performance I shall come back to often. It is definitely among the Ninths that count” MusicWeb International (No. 9)

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4808895

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)


THE BEETHOVEN CYCLE FOR THE 21ST CENTURY. Sony Classical is delighted to re-release Christian Thielemann & the Vienna Philharmonic’s incredible Beethoven cycle. This striking hardcover booklet with slipcase houses 6 CDs containing Beethoven’s entire symphonic output. Dubbed “The Beethoven Cycle of the 21st Century”, this cycle was recorded live in concert in the Goldener Saal of the Vienna Musikverein between 2008 and 2010 by the Vienna Philharmonic under the baton of Thielemann.

Sony - 88875112822

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$41.75

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Remastered


5 CD + 1 Blu-ray Audio

CDs 1 – 5: Symphonies nos. 1 – 9 on 5 CDs, remastered at 24 bit / 96 kHz (an update on the SACD version of 2003)

1 Blu-ray Audio (Disc 6) comprises ALL 9 SYMPHONIES plus the rehearsal of the Ninth Symphony

An ultramodern 24 bit / 96 kHz remastering of this classic set delivered ‘twice complete’ – once across 5CDs, and once on a single Blu-ray Audio with the rehearsal of the Ninth Symphony. Presentation is a unique deluxe package full of nostalgic touches and rare Karajan photos.

Karajan recorded the Complete Symphonies of Beethoven no fewer than 4 times for DG, but this first 1963 recording was financially the most daring, artistically the most radical, and commercially the most successful.

By 1973 nearly one million sets had been sold and 50 years on from its original launch, the set remains the best-selling Beethoven cycle of all time.

The 1963 Berlin set dazzled like no other, aided in no small measure by the clean, clear, daringly “lit” recordings made in Berlin’s Jesus-Christus-Kirche by the young Günter Hermanns whose debut as Karajan’s principal recording engineer this was.

Critics and the record-buying public were enthused above all by the urgency and beauty of the music-making and by a fierce sense of joy which reached its apogee in a thrillingly played and eloquently sung account of the finale of the epic Ninth Symphony.

“I'm sure it's possible to fill several pages simply discussing the relative merits of Herbert von Karajan's various recordings of the complete symphonies with the Berlin Philharmonic, but in the end I've plumped for the set first released in 1963. There's an intensity to the Funeral March of the Eroica, a warmth to the Pastoral and a grandeur to the Ninth that amazes me every time, with none of the heaviness that arguably crept into some of his later accounts with the same orchestra. Exemplary in every respect” James Longstaffe, Presto Classical

Presto Favourites

Recommended Recording

DG - 4793442

(5 CDs + Blu-ray Audio - 6 discs)

$54.00

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Beethoven: Symphonies & Overtures

Beethoven: Symphonies & Overtures

1951-1955 Official Remastered Edition


Beethoven:

Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Marga Höffgen, Ernst Haefliger, Otto Edelmann

Chor der Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde, Wien

Leonore Overture No. 3, Op. 72b

Coriolan Overture, Op. 62

Egmont Overture, Op. 84

Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 'Choral'

Bonus CD. First release from unissued stereo tapes

Chor der Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde, Wien


The Karajan Official Remastered Edition comprises 13 box sets containing official remasterings of the finest recordings the Austrian conductor made for EMI between 1946 and 1984, and which are now a jewel of the Warner Classics catalogue.

For many, Herbert von Karajan (1908-1989) – hailed early in his career as ‘Das Wunder Karajan’ (The Karajan Miracle) and known in the early 1960s as ‘the music director of Europe’ – remains the ultimate embodiment of the maestro. The release of the Karajan Official Remastered Edition over the first half of 2014 marks the 25th anniversary of the conductor’s death in July 1989 at the age of 81.

He was closely associated with EMI for the majority of his recording career (specifically from 1946 to 1960 and then again from 1969 to 1984). EMI’s legendary producer Walter Legge sought him out in Vienna just after World War II and the long relationship that ensued embraced recordings with the Vienna Philharmonic, the Philharmonia (the orchestra founded by Legge), the Berlin Philharmonic (of which Karajan became ‘conductor for life’ in 1955), the forces of La Scala, Milan, and the Orchestre de Paris.

The Karajan Official Remastered Edition will feature primarily symphonic and choral music. The entire edition will comprise recordings remastered from the original sources in 24-bit/96kHz at Abbey Road Studios, the world’s most renowned recording studio.

Warner Classics Karajan Official Remastered Edition - 2564633735

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Beethoven: The Symphonies

Beethoven: The Symphonies

and reflections


Beethoven:

Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Kancheli:

Dixi

Šerkšnytė:

Fires

Shchedrin:

Beethovens Heiligenstädter Testament

Staud:

Manai

Widmann, J:

Con brio


“This is an exceptional realisation of Beethoven's nine symphonies, one of those rare occasions when one is left with a feeling of having been in the presence of the thing itself. The key to the cycle's success is the quality of the musicianship...the dramatic and expressive elements are derived from within” Gramophone Magazine, December 2013

“Jansons adopts...an approach which takes into consideration the historically informed approach of the last 30 years, but is still aware of what performances were like in the great German tradition...If you want vigorous conducting, immaculate but lean playing, and unfailingly sprightly tempos in the Beethoven, this set is for you.” BBC Music Magazine, February 2014 ***

“This set would be eminently recommendable if only for the nine Beethoven symphonies, performed with muscularity and flair.” New York Times, December 2013

GGramophone Awards 2014

Shortlisted - Orchestral

GGramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - December 2013

BR Klassik - 900119

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Arturo Toscanini: The Complete HMV Recordings

Arturo Toscanini: The Complete HMV Recordings


Beethoven:

Symphony No. 1 in C major, Op. 21

Symphony No. 6 in F major, Op. 68 'Pastoral'

Symphony No. 4 in B flat major, Op. 60

Symphony No. 7 in A major, Op. 92

Leonore Overture No. 1, Op. 138

The Creatures of Prometheus Overture, Op. 43

Brahms:

Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 73

Symphony No. 4 in E minor, Op. 98

Tragic Overture, Op. 81

Debussy:

La Mer

Elgar:

Enigma Variations, Op. 36

Mendelssohn:

A Midsummer Night's Dream: Nocturne

A Midsummer Night's Dream: Scherzo

Mozart:

Die Zauberflöte, K620: Overture

Rossini:

La scala di seta Overture

Semiramide Overture

Sibelius:

Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 43

Wagner:

Faust Overture, WWV59

Götterdämmerung: Siegfried's Death & Funeral March

Parsifal: Prelude to Act 1

Parsifal: Good Friday Music

Weber:

Invitation to the Dance, Op. 65


Known simply as ‘The Maestro’, Toscanini attracted adoring fans wherever and whenever he performed and his visit to London in 1935 was nothing short of a sensation, quickly becoming the hottest ticket in town. Toscanini had already dazzled London audiences in 1930 with the New York Philharmonic-Symphony Orchestra and when he returned to the capital five years later he performed with a British ensemble for the first time: the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Formed in 1930, the BBCSO quickly established a reputation for virtuosity and was an ideal vehicle for Toscanini’s fiery musicianship. His visit was without question the highlight of the orchestra’s short history to that date. The HMV recordings that result from this collaboration has simply not been overpassed For instance, his outstanding performance of La Mer benefits from a both a vital energy and a variety of colour (that the recording, despite of his age, is surprisingly fully able to bring to our ears) and explains by itself the higher respect from the composer to the maestro.

Warner Classics Icons - 7233342

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$25.50

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)


6 CD +1 Bonus DVD

This striking hardcover booklet with slipcase houses 6 CDs containing Beethoven’s entire symphonic work as well as a Bonus DVD with the documentary “Making van Beethoven”. (Documentary on the recording process with interviews with Christian Thielemann and members of the orchestra.) Dubbed “The Beethoven Cycle of the 21st Century”, this cycle was recorded live in concert in the Goldener Saal of the Vienna Musikverein between 2008 and 2010 by the Vienna Philharmonic under the baton of Thielemann.

Read Presto's complete review of this disc here.

“Anyone who grew up with Herbert von Karajan, Karl Böhm or Eugen Jochum's recordings will feel at home in the musical world Thielemann creates...The Third, the Eroica, may be all bulging muscle and portentous climaxes, but it has a sense of purpose and dynamism that make it the most successful performance of the nine, just as the scale and scope of the Ninth is never in doubt.” The Guardian, 19th January 2012 ***

“Thielemann’s approach is defiantly old-school – tempi are expansive and disarmingly flexible, orchestral sonorities are huge, rich and fruity. Once your ears have adjusted, there’s an awful lot of music-making here which sounds undeniably magnificent. The brassy opening of the Fifth Symphony’s finale suggests that we’re entering Valhalla.” The Arts Desk, 3rd March 2012

“Thielemann is a musician who is not only conservative but thought-prokovingly original - and his performances will appeal to listeners who long for a return to interpretative values that are closer to the very individual Beethoven of Furtwangler or Mengelberg.” International Record Review, May 2012

“one of the most joyous, released and sheerly infectious accounts I have ever heard [of the Second], full of drive, impish wit and manic ecstasy. The orchestra is obviously having a high old time...Thielemann takes the orchestra’s famed sonority and builds on it. These are performances all of a piece; Thielemann has imposed his conception upon the cycle as a whole and the emphasis upon weight and grandeur without excluding excitement.” MusicWeb International, May 2012

“Perhaps the most controversial aspect of Thielemann’s approach is a more extreme deployment of rubato than is traditional...While it may be too much for some, it is always there for a reason: either to underline a dramatic moment or to highlight an important point in the structure of a movement.” James Longstaffe, Presto Classical, 23rd January 2012

Presto Disc of the Week

23rd January 2012

Sony Thielemann Beethoven Symphonies - 88697927172

(CD - 6 discs)

$62.50

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9


Beethoven:

Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Cheryl Studer (soprano), Delores Ziegler (mezzo), Peter Seiffert (tenor), James Morris (bass)

Fidelio Overture Op. 72c

Leonore Overture No. 3, Op. 72b

Consecration of the House Overture, Op. 124

Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37

Sviatoslav Richter (piano)

Philharmonia Orchestra


Riccardo Muti’s achievement in Beethoven’s iconic cycle, and as Music Director of the Philadelphia Orchestra between 1980 and 1992, was summarised by Gramophone magazine: ‘… Magnificent in its blend of deliberation and energy … superb playing and a clear sense of discovery communicate themselves thrillingly to the listener’. A special additional feature of this set is Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto, with Muti and the Philharmonia Orchestra accompanying the legendary Sviatoslav Richter.

Warner Classics Riccardo Muti Edition - 0979462

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Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9

Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 1-9


Beethoven:

Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (complete)

Coriolan Overture, Op. 62

Egmont Overture, Op. 84


Ingeborg Wenglor (soprano), Annelies Burmeister (alto), Martin Ritzmann (tenor) & Rolf Kühne (bass)

Czech Philharmonic Orchestra & Prague Philharmonic Choir, Paul Kletzki

Beethoven’s symphonies are among the cornerstones of the symphonic repertoire. They bear witness to the composer’s remarkable journey from airy Classicism to the peerless idiom he had developed on the threshold of the Romantic epoch.

Those who have taken up the challenge to record the complete cycle include the Polish-born conductor Paul Kletzki, who gained great renown after the war, primarily in America. He was the principal conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra for a year and after his debut in Philadelphia went on to conduct the leading American and European orchestras.

This remarkable complete recording of Beethoven’s symphonies was made during Kletzki’s performances with the Czech Philharmonic in 1967, during the orchestra’s golden age under the chief conductor Karel Ančerl. This gem of the Supraphon archives thoroughly deserves the current re-edition in remastered form owing to its freshness and expressive depth.

Beethoven as explored by Kletzki – a legendary, time-honoured recording.

“The Czech Phil’s sound here is charismatic and idiomatic, with a rich, muscular string timbre cushioning highly distinctive wind and brass playing...The interpretations hold up very well – Kletzki’s speeds are unhurried, but never seem unduly slow as he’s so good at sustaining the string lines and giving plenty of lift to the rhythms...[in the Ninth] the Czech choral sound is thrilling and Kletzki has good soloists.” Graham Rickson, The Arts Desk, 9th July 2011

Supraphon - SU40512

(CD - 6 discs)

$34.00

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