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Rimsky Korsakov - Scheherazade (Stokowski) [1962]

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Rimsky Korsakov - Scheherazade (Stokowski) [1962]

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1. The Sea And Sinbad's Ship (Largo e maestoso - Lento - Allegro non troppo - Tranquillo)
2. The Story Of The Kalender Prince (Lento - Andantino - Allegro molto - Vivace scherzando - Moderato assai - Allegro molto ed animato)
3. The Young Prince And The Young Princess (Andantino quasi allegretto - Pochissimo più mosso - Come prima - Pochissimo più animato)
4. Festival Of Bagdad, Sea, Ship Goes To Pieces On Rock Surmounted By Bronze Warrior (Allegro molto - Lento - Vivo - Allegro non troppo e maestoso - Tempo come I)

Anshel Brusilow – violin
Philadelphia Orchestra
Leopold Stokowski - conductor

 

The story of Leopold Stokowski is the stuff of legend: now universally acknowledged as one of the greatest conductors of the 20th-century, this extraordinarily gifted musician was for several decades music director of the Philadelphia Orchestra in the United States, raising it to a position of international pre-eminence. Although he finally relinquished his position after almost 30 years, he returned to Philadelphia around twenty years later for a series of concerts which have achieved legendary status, including the two Russian works on this one CD: the music of Tchaikovsky and Rimsky-Korsakov was very close to the great conductor's Romantic heart, and the great Philadelphia Orchestra respond to their one-time Maestro with a combination of stunning virtuosity and sensitivity allied to very fine stereo quality sound. --- guildmusic.com

 

There is no mention of the soloist on the CD, but thanks to Mark Obert-Thorn I found out that the concert master in '62 was Anshel Brusilow (but, again, that is no guarantee he is the soloist, though it is likely). Note that the first movement in this live performance times in close to the '27 recording. In fact, the timings here (which I had to get by putting the disc in and then checking the timings) provide evidence of how Stokowski might have played it when live in Philadelphia. The sound here is okay, but nothing special. It seems to be monaural but it does have some ambiance that suggests early stereo. Damn't why doesn't the Philadelphia Orchestra market this and the other Stokowski '60s performances??? I'd love to hear the Sibelius 4th!!! Over-all, while this is an exciting performance, the sound mitigates against an unqualified recommendation. Besides, how the hell would you find a copy? --- Robert Stumpf II, classical.net

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