This is Leonard Bernstein: His Greatest Recordings

 
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GERSHWIN / GROFE / HAYDN / BEETHOVEN / STRAVINSKY / BERNSTEIN / MAHLER
This is Leonard Bernstein: His Greatest Recordings
Rudolf Serkin, Lukas Foss (pianos), Original Broadway Cast, Dietrich Fischer Dieskau (baritone) / New York Philharmonic Orchestra, Leonard Bernstein

[ Sony Classical / 16 CD Box Set ]

Release Date: Sunday 1 November 2009

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This special edition collects the conductor-composer's 15 most celebrated original albums from the 1950s and 60s on 16 CDs. The best selection of his benchmark recordings as a conductor, composer and pianist including: Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, Mahler's Third Symphony, Beethoven's "Emperor" with Rudolf Serkin, Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue, Candide and West Side Story among others. The remasterings in this new collection are the best ever issued.of these thrilling recordings by one of the last century's greatest musicians - the perfect introduction to the work of this American genius.

Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990) was perhaps the most influential figure in classical music in the last half of the twentieth century. Composer, conductor, author, lecturer and often controversial media personality, the American-born Bernstein had a dramatic impact on the popular audience's acceptance and appreciation of classical music. His own work as a composer, particularly his scores for such Broadway musicals as West Side Story and On the Town, helped forge a new relationship between classical and popular music.

"Bernstein's approach is inspirational, exceptionally flexible and completely spontaneous. The performance of An American in Paris is vividly characterized, brash and episodic." Rosette (Highest Award) Penguin Stereo Guide (for the Gershwin)

"The results are a spectacular sonic improvement of an already spectacular performance, surely one of the best and most exciting ever, in comparison with which some others may sound almost dull. The full primitive savagery of this unique work is brought out. Just to mention one sound improvement, the timpani are heard clearly and cleanly, as they would be in a good hall. Anyone who liked the original recording will love this." Classical Net (on the Rite of Spring)

"There has been a ton of Haydn since these performances, both on modern and period instruments, but it's debatable whether there have been better performances. Broadly speaking, Bernstein brings out more wit and charm than most period performances allow, and he's nowhere near as self-indulgent as many of his detractors claim...when things go right, they remain unsurpassed." Classical Net (on the Haydn Symphonies)

Tracks:

Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 in E flat major, Op. 55 'Eroica'
Beethoven: Consecration of the House Overture, Op. 124
Beethoven: König Stephan Overture, Op. 117
Beethoven: Fidelio Overture Op. 72c
Beethoven: Egmont Overture, Op. 84
Beethoven: Leonore Overture No. 3, Op. 72b
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat major, Op. 73 'Emperor'
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37
Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue
Gershwin: An American in Paris
Grofe: Grand Canyon Suite
Bernstein: Symphony No. 2 'The Age of Anxiety'
Bernstein: Serenade (after Plato's 'Symposium')
Bernstein: West Side Story: Broadway Cast
Bernstein: Candide: Broadway Cast
Copland: Rodeo
Copland: Billy the Kid - Suite
Dvorak: Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95 'From the New World'
Haydn: Symphony No. 82 in C major, 'The Bear'
Haydn: Symphony No. 83 in G minor 'The Hen'
Mahler: Ich atmet' einen linden Duft (Rückert-Lieder)
Mahler: Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder! (Rückert-Lieder)
Mahler: Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen (Rückert-Lieder)
Mahler: Um Mitternacht (Rückert-Lieder)
Mahler: Lieder und Gesänge aus der Jugendzeit
Mahler: Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen
Mahler: Symphony No. 3
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 17 in G major, K453
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 15 in B flat major, K450
Nielsen: Symphony No. 3, Op. 27 (FS60) 'Sinfonia espansiva'
Nielsen: Symphony No. 5, Op. 50 (FS97)
Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring