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Detailed listing (last five days)]
[Part 1 New]  
 [Part 2 A-B] [Part 3 C-L]
[Part 4 M-R]  [Part 5 S-Z]
[Part 6 Misc A-L][Part 7 Misc M-Z]
[Recommended recordings]


RECORDING OF THE MONTH Sir Malcolm ARNOLD (1921-2006) Wind Chamber Music Wind Quintet, Op.2 (1943) [12:01] Duo for 2 clarinets, Op. 135, Divertimento (1988) : (I. Allegro energico [1:40] II. Allegretto [0:48] III. Vivace [0:53] IV. Lento [1:51] V. Vivace [1:19] VI. Adagio [1:33])* Dream City (1938) (arr. Paul Harris for wind quintet) [2:58] Hobson's Choice: Overture (1953) (arr. Uwe Radok for wind octet) [3:30] Grand Fantasia for flute, clarinet and piano (1940) [10:03] Overture (1940) (arr. Uwe Radok for wind octet) [3:22] Suite Bourgeoise for flute, clarinet and piano (c. 1939) [12:05] Scherzetto (arr. for clarinet and piano from film score You Know What Sailors Are) (1953) [2:44] Fantasy for solo clarinet, Op. 87 (1966) [4:05] Fantasy for flute and clarinet (c. 1960s) [1:30] Divertimento for flute, oboe and clarinet, Op. 37 (c. 1952) [9:05] 3 Shanties for wind quintet, Op. 4 (1943) [6:57] East Winds: (Judith Treggor (flute); Joseph Sanders (oboe); Victoria Soames Samek (clarinet); Jonathan Hassan (French horn); Lizbeth Elliott (bassoon)) Paul Chilvers (piano); Veda Lin (second oboe); Allison Rosser (second clarinet); Duncan Fuller (second French horn); Lauren Barr (second bassoon) rec. 22-23 June 2006, Potton Hall, Suffolk, England. DDD *op. 135 movements are separated and alternate with successive works NAXOS 8.570294 [76:24] [MC]

On this Naxos release Sir Malcolm is in his element with these excellently performed wind chamber scores and I was with him all the way. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Johann Sebastian BACH (1685-1750) Cello Suites CD 1 No. 1 in G major BWV 1007 [16:11] No. 2 in D minor BWV 1008 [17:27] No. 3 in C major BWV 1009 [19:46] No. 4 in E flat major BWV 1010 [21:35] CD 2 No. 5 in C minor BWV 1011 [24:06] No. 6 in D major BWV 1012 [27:26] The Song of the Birds (arr. Sally Beamish) [2:44] Prelude from Cello Suite No.1 (Anna Magdalena manuscript) [2:24] Prelude from Cello Suite No.1 (Johann Peter Kellner manuscript) [2:21] Prelude from Cello Suite No.1 (Johann Christoph Westphal collection) [2:29] Steven Isserlis (cello) rec. Henry Wood Hall, London 4-8 December 2005 (CD1, CD2 Song, Preludes), and 17-19 July 2006 (CD2 Suites 5, 6) HYPERION CDA67541/2 [75.10 + 61:58] [DC]

Something like being presented with the St. Matthew Passion on a single instrument … the best of the best in this most personal of all possible worlds ... see Full Review 

HISTORICAL RECORDING OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphony No.3 in E flat major Op.55 Eroica (1804) [52:05] Alexander GLAZUNOV (1865-1936) Stenka Razin – symphonic poem in B minor Op.13 (1886) [18:52] Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/Wilhelm Furtwängler – Beethoven [Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra/Leo Borchard] – Glazunov; claimed to be Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/Wilhelm Furtwängler rec.16 December 1944 (Beethoven) and (2 February 1945 - Glazunov) MELODIYA MEL CD 10 01106 [70:57] [JW]

Furtwängler’s Eroica - the most dramatic and the most intense. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Symphony No. 8 in F major, Op. 93 (1812) [23:13] König Stephan, Op.117 (1811): Overture [6:24], Siegesmarch [3:01], Geistlicher marsch [1:21] Ruins of Athens, Op. 113 (1811): Overture [4:17], Turkish March [1:52] Fidelio Overture, Op. 72b (1814) [5:58] Tarpeja, WoO2 (1813): Introduction to Act 2 [1:56], Triumphal March [2:20] Namensfeier Overture, Op. 115 (1814-15) [6:27] Wellington’s Victory, Op. 91 (1813) [14:55] Swedish Chamber Orchestra Örebro/Thomas Dausgaard rec. Örebro Concert Hall, October 2002, September 2003, September 2004, September 2005. DDD SIMAX PSC 1282 [71:44][MG]

An enlightening CD of fresh performances and stimulating contrasts, through which you discover an unexpected masterpiece.  … see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Claude DEBUSSY (1862-1918) La Mer: trois esquisses symphoniques (1903-05) [24:51] Claude DEBUSSY arranged for orchestra by Colin MATTHEWS (b. 1946) Préludes (1910-1912, arrs, 2001-06):- Brouillards (Book II No. 1) [4:03] Ce qu’a vu le vent d’Ouest (Book I, No. 7) [3:10] Minstrels (Book I No 12) [2:39] Canope (Book II No 10) [2:57] Les sons et les parfums tournent dans l’air du soir (Book I No 4) [3:53] La Puerta del Vino (Book II No 3) [3:38] Général Lavine – eccentric (Book II No. 6) [3:15] Feuilles mortes (Book II No 2) [3:36] Les tierces alternées (Book II No. 11) [3:12] La danse de Puck (Book I No 11) [3:03] Le vent dans la plaine (Book I No 3) [2:55] La fille aux cheveux de lin (Book I No 8)*[5:00] Hallé Orchestra/Mark Elder rec. 14–16 July 2006; *2 August 2006, BBC Studio 7, New Broadcasting House, Manchester. DDD HALLÉ CD HLL 7513 [67:24][JQ]

This release is an out-and-out winner. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Claudio MONTEVERDI (1567-1643) Madrigali guerrieri et amorosi: libro ottavo (1638) 1. Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda [22:03] 2. Il Ballo delle ingrate [36:10] 3. Sinfonia a doi violini e una viola di brazzo [0:45] 4. Altri canti d’amor, tenero arciero, a sei voci con quattro viole e doi violini [9:52] 5. Lamento de la Ninfa [4:43] 6. Vago augelletto, che cantando vai, a sei e sette voci con doi violini e un contrabasso [5:42] 7. Perchč t’ en fuggi, o fillide? A tre (alto, tenore e basso) [5:59] 8. Altri canti di marte, a sei voci et doi violini [8:59] 9. Ogni amante č guerrier [14:18] 10. Hor che ’l ciel e la terra e ’l vento tace, a sei voci con doi violini [10:46] 11. Gira il nemico, insidioso amore [5:43] 12. Dolcissimo uscignolo, a cinque voci, cantato a voce piena, alla francese [3:42] 13. Ardo, ardo, avvampo, mi struggo, a otto voci con doi violini [4:16] 14. Introduzione e ballo [9:40] 15. Se vittoria sě belle, a doi tenori [2:39] 16. Su, su, su, pastorelli vezzosi, a tre, doi canti e alto [2:33] 17. Ardo e scoprir, ahi lasso, io non ardisco, a doi tenori [3:30] 18. Chi vol aver felice e lieto il core, a cinque voci, cantato a voce piena, alla francese [2:06] 19. Armato il cor d’adamantina fede, a doi tenore [2:20] 20. Non partir ritrosetta, a tre, doi alti e basso [4:17] 21. O sia tranquillo il mare, a doi tenori [4:20] 22. Mentre vaga angiolwtta, a doi tenori [9:31] 23. Ninfa che, scalza il piede [5:19] Concerto Italiano/Rinasso Alessandrini rec. (1-3) January 1998, Centro Giovanni XXIII, Frascati, Italy; (4-13) February 1997, Salone della Musica, Villa Medici, Ora Giulini, Briosco, Italy; (14-23) December 2005, Palazzo Farnese, Rome, Italy. OPUS 111 OP30435 [3 CDs: 58:24 + 75:11 + 46:22] [GPu]

A glorious, theatrical recording of Monteverdi’s final collection of madrigals, vivid, energetic, full of contrast and power, subtlety and rhythmic vitality … see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Francis George SCOTT (1880-1958) Moonstruck – The Songs of F G Scott 1. Milkwort and Bog-cotton [2.32]; 2. Crowdiknowe [1.36]; 3. Moonstruck [2.37]; 4. The Eemis Stane [2.03]; 5. The Sauchs in the Reuch Heuch Hauch [1.12]; 6. Ay Waukin, O [3.52]; 7. Amang the Trees [1.26]; 8. The Discreet Hint [1.36]; 9. Je descendis dans mon jardin [2.22]; 10. Florine [1.46]; 11. Lourd on my hert [1.22]; 12. The Watergaw [2.26]; 13. Country Life [1.14]; 14. Wheesht, Wheest [1.31]; 15. O, wha my babie-clouts will buy? [2.04]; 16. My wife's a wanton we thing [1.33]; 17. The Inumerable Christ [3.06]; 18. I wha aince in Heavens' Heicht [1.24]; 19. An Apprentice Angel [2.08]; 20. Hungry Waters [1.49]; 21. Te Deil o'Bogie [2.48]; 22. To a Lady [2.32]; 23. Cupid and Venus [2.33]; 24. The Old Fisherman [2.24]; 25. Im Tiroler Wirsthaus [1.02]; 26. In Time of Tumult [2.05]; 27. The Man in the Moon [2.07]; 28. First Love [1.46]; 29. Empty Vessel [1.13]; 30. The Wren's Nest [1.09]; 31. Love of Alba [1.53]; 32. The Wee Man [1.10]; Total running time: [62.26] Lisa Milne (soprano) Roderick Williams (baritone) Iain Burnside (piano) rec. The Warehouse, London 13-14 March, 15-16 July 2006. DDD SIGNUM CLASSICS SIGCD 096 [62:26][CSS]

This is a Must! ... see Full Review

HISTORICAL RECORDING OF THE MONTH Jean SIBELIUS (1865-1957) Violin Concerto Op. 47 (1903 rev. 1905) [30:37] En Saga, Op.9 (1892/1902) [20:08] Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827) Coriolan Overture Op.62 (1807) [9:00] Georg Kulenkampff (violin) Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra/Wilhelm Furtwängler rec. Berlin 7 February 1942; 27 June 1943 (Coriolan) MELODIYA MEL CD 10 01109 [59:49] [JW]

Adherents of the concerto should have this Kulenkampff, along with the Ignatius, Wicks, Neveu and Heifetz. Others should get it anyway in whichever incarnation they may find it. ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH Richard STRAUSS (1864–1949) Salome, Op. 54 (1905) Final Scene 1. Ah! Du wolltest mich nicht deinen Mund küssen lassen, Jochanaan! [15:56] Capriccio, Op. 85 (1942) Final Scene 2. Interlude: Mondscheinmusik [3:14] 3. Morgen mittag um elf! [15:51]Vier letzte Lieder Op. posth. (1948) 4. Frühling [3:10] 5. September [4:42] 6. Beim Schlafengehen [5:11] 7. Im Abendrot [7:35] Nina Stemme (soprano) Gerhard Siegel (tenor) (1), Liora Grodnikaite (mezzo) (1), Jeremy White (bass) (2), Richard Clews (horn solo) (5), Peter Manning (violin solo) (6) Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden/Antonio Pappano rec. Studio No. 1, Abbey Road, London, on 1-2, 4-5, 11 September 2006 EMI CLASSICS 3787972 [56:22] [GF]

This is a disc that should find a place in every Strauss lover’s collection ... see Full Review

RECORDING OF THE MONTH British Horn Concertos Gordon JACOB (1895-1984) Concerto for Horn and Strings (1950s) [20:35] Malcolm ARNOLD (1921-2006) Concerto No. 2 for Horn and Strings, Op. 58 (1956) [14:03] York BOWEN (1884-1961) Concerto for Horn, string orchestra and timpani (1956) [16:27] Ruth GIPPS (1921-1999) Horn Concerto, Op. 58 (1968) [17:11] Gilbert VINTER (1909-1969) Hunter’s Moon (1943) [6:22] David Pyatt (horn) London Philharmonic Orchestra/Nicholas Braithwaite rec. Watford Town Hall, 10-21 Jan 1994 (Jacob, Bowen, Arnold); Henry Wood Hall, London, 8-9 Feb 1994 (Gipps, Vinter). DDD LYRITA SRCD.316 [74:42] [JQ]

For sheer listening pleasure this is one of the best discs to have come my way for a long time. ... see Full Review



BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Benjamin BRITTEN (1913-1976) The Complete Purcell Realizations CD 1: Songs from Orpheus Britannicus The knotting song (1939, publ. 1994) [2:04] JB Seven songs (1947): Fairest Isle [2:20] FL; If music be the food of love [4:10] JMA; Turn then thine eyes [1:34] JMA; Music for a while [3:14] SW; Pious Celinda [1:25] IB; I:ll sail upon the Dog-star [1:23] RJ; On the brow of Richmond Hill [1:50] ARJ Six songs (1948): Mad Bess [5:23] SW; If music be the food of love [2:08] FL; There:s not a swain of the plain [0:52] IB; Not all my torments [2:41] JB; Man is for the Woman made [1:07] ARJ; Sweeter than roses [3:42] FL O Solitude (1955) [6:28] JMA Five songs (1960): I attempt from Love:s sickness to fly [2:12] SG; I take no pleasure [1:44] IB; Hark the ech:ing air! [2:28] FL; Take not a woman:s anger ill [1:28] JMA; How blest are Shepherds [3:29] JMA Celemene (1946, publ. 1994) [3:52] SG, IB Six duets (1961): Sound the Trumpet [2:24] ARJ, JMA; I spy Celia [4:05] IB, RJ; Lost is my quiet [3:18] SG, SW; What can we poor females do? [1:12] SG, SW; No, Resistance is but vain [5:35] SW, RJ; Shepherd, leave decoying [1:17] SG, SW CD 2: Songs from Harmonia Sacra The Queen's Epicedium (1946) [7:24] IB The Blessed Virgin:s Expostulation (1947) [7:25] FL Saul and the witch at Endor (1947) [11:46] SW, JMA, SK Three divine hymns (1947): Lord, what is man? [6:09] FL; We sing to him [1:54] JB; Evening hymn [4:35] FL Job's Curse (1950) [5:08] SK Two divine hymns and Alleluia (1960) [9:41] ARJ Dulcibella (1971, publ. 1994) [2:09] IB, RJ When Myra sings (1971, publ. 1994) [2:45] IB, RJ Let the dreadful engines of eternal will (1971) [7:57] SK Felicity Lott, Susan Gritton (sopranos); Sarah Walker (mezzo); James Bowman (counter-tenor); John Mark Ainsley, Ian Bostridge, Anthony Rolfe Johnson (tenors); Richard Jackson, Simon Keenlyside (baritone); Graham Johnson (piano) rec. Rosslyn Hill Unitarian Chapel, London, 5–10 January 1995. DDD. HYPERION DYAD CDD22058 [70:17 + 73:20][ED]

I have been listening to these two generously filled discs, searching for reasons not to buy them. I have not thought of a single one. ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756-1791) Concertos for Horn and Orchestraa – No. 1 in D, K386b (1791?) [8:16]; No. 2 in E flat, K417 (1783) [13:44]; No. 3 in E flat, K447 (1784-87) [15:53]; No. 4 in E flat, K495 (1786) [16:05]. Quintet for Piano and wind Instruments, K452b (1784) [21:30]. aDennis Brain (horn); bWalter Gieseking (piano); aPhilharmonia Orchestra/Herbert von Karajan; bPhilharmonia Wind Ensemble (Sidney Sutcliffe (oboe); Bernard Walton (clarinet); Dennis Brain (horn); Cecil James, (bassoon)) rec. aKingsway Hall, London, 12-13, 23 November 1953; bEMI Abbey Road Studio No. 1, London, 15 April 1955. ADD NAXOS HISTORICAL 8.111070 [75:16][CC]

This disc is pure joy. At the price, it is almost a crime not to snap it up. This is as near to flawless horn playing as we can expect this side of the veil. ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Sergei RACHMANINOV (1873-1943) Complete Songs Joan Rodgers (soprano), Maria Popescu (mezzo-soprano), Alexandre Naoumenko (tenor), Sergei Leiferkus (bass) Howard Shelley (piano) rec. St. Michael’s Church, Highgate, London 1994-95 BRILLIANT CLASSICS 8531 [3 CDs: 76:01 + 71:54 + 68:00] [JW]

These decade-old recordings have stood the test of time. The set is something of a steal. ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH Karol SZYMANOWSKI (1882-1937) Violin Concerto No.1 Op.35 (1916) [26:09] Violin Concerto No.2 Op.61 (1932-33) [22:13] Nocturne and Tarantella Op.28 (1915) orch. Grzegorz Fitelberg [11:51] Ilya Kaler (violin) Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra/Antoni Wit rec. Philharmonic Hall, Warsaw, September 2006 NAXOS 8.557981 [60:12][JW]

Excellent sound, intelligently argued performances and instrumental finesse - a handsome bargain at whatever price bracket. ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH American Choral Music Vincent PERSICHETTI (1915-1987) Flower Songs, Op. 157 (1983) [19:25] Charles IVES (1874-1954) Psalm 90 (1923-24) [11:06] John CORIGLIANO (b. 1938) Fern Hill* (1960) [15:33] Lukas FOSS (b. 1922) Behold, I build an House  (1950) [10:05] Aaron COPLAND (1900-1990) In the Beginning* (1947) [16:02] Suzanne Mentzer (mezzo)* The University of Texas Chamber Singers and Chamber Orchestra/James Morrow rec. 21-22 January 2006, Bates Recital Hall, School of Music, University of Texas, Austin. DDD NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.559299 [72:11][JQ]

A very stimulating collection of fine performances of mainly unfamiliar repertoire ... see Full Review

BARGAIN OF THE MONTH The British Light Music Collection 1 CD1 Sir Malcolm ARNOLD (1921-2006) The Roots Of Heaven – Overture (1958) [5:03] William ALWYN (1905-1985) Suite of Scottish Dances (The Indian Queen; A Trip to Italy; Colonel Thornton's Strathspey; The Perthshire Hunt – Reel; Loch Earn – Reel; Carleton House; Miss Ann Carnegie's Hornpipe) (1946) [6:37] Sir Malcolm SARGENT (1895-1967) An Impression on a Windy Day (1927) [7:14] Clifton PARKER (1905-1989) The Glass Slipper – Overture [3:37] James LANGLEY (1927-1994) The Coloured Counties [5:52] Gordon JACOB (1895-1984) The Barber of Seville Goes to the Devil Overture [4:29] Maurice JOHNSTONE (1900-1976) Tarn Hows - A Cumbrian Rhapsody (1949) [13:56] Alan LANGFORD (b.1928) Two Worlds - Overture [5:11] Sir Richard Rodney BENNETT (b.1936) Little Suite (The Bird's Lament; The Widow Bird; The Ladybird; Glow-worms; The Lark) (1965) [9:49] David LYON (b.1938) Joie De Vivre - Overture (1972) [6:50] CD2 Malcolm ARNOLD (1921-2006) Little Suite No.4, Op.80a (orch. Lane) (Prelude; Siciliano; Rondo) (1963) [7:30] William BLEZARD (b. 1921) The River (1969) [6:11]Adrian CRUFT (1921-1987) Traditional Hornpipe Suite (Newcastle and Navvie; Irish; Del Caro's; Oak Hill; Fisher's; Billy Bones) [7:04] Eric FENBY (1906-1997) Rossini On Ilkla Moor - Overture (1938) [6:35] Raymond WARREN (b.1928) Wexford Bells - Suite on Old Irish Tunes (1970) (Shepherds' Dance'; Lute Book Lullaby; Christmas Jig; Wexford Bells) [10:30] Arthur BUTTERWORTH (b.1923) The Path Across The Moors (1958) [6:39] Anthony HEDGES (b. 1931) An Ayrshire Serenade, Op.42 (1971) (Allegro moderato; Andantino; Molto vivace) [10:08] Paul LEWIS (b.1943) An English Overture (1971) [5:25] Philip LANE (b.1950) Suite of Cotswold Folk Dances (1978) (Wheatly Processional; Constant Billy; Brighton Camp; Jockie to the Fair; Ladies of Pleasure; Princess Royal) [11:40] Royal Ballet Sinfonia/Kenneth Alwyn; Gavin Sutherland rec. Whitfield Street Studios, London, 1-2 April 1998; 24 June, 15 September 1999. DDD RESONANCE CDRSB205 [70:11 + 74:08] [RB]

Light music of euphoria and contentment ... see Full Review

Detailed listing (last five days)]
[Part 1 New]  
 [Part 2 A-B] [Part 3 C-L]
[Part 4 M-R]  [Part 5 S-Z]
[Part 6 Misc A-L][Part 7 Misc M-Z]
[Recommended recordings]

This is one of three big boxes from EMI – the others feature Mozart and Schubert – which represent something of a departure for a major company. EMI have probably issued comparable size boxes before but most probably in anniversary or complete edition mode, and undoubtedly costing more than this one which comes in at hardly more than £1 a disc. That territory belongs to the likes of Brilliant Classics who issued some 40 disc boxes of major composers about three years ago at under £1 per disc. I am not sure quite who these very cheap mega-boxes are aimed at but we’ll come back to that later.

The arbitrary number of 50 CDs probably fits Beethoven quite well – better than Mozart or Schubert – because this does allow coverage of just about all his major works. Reviewing the list of those played here against a catalogue of the composer’s published opuses, there is not much missing – a couple of overtures, the two string quintets, woodwind trio and horn sonata seem to be the most important items not included. And these could probably have been squeezed in – I presume that suitable recordings were not to hand. There are not many "WoOs" but there again few, if any, of Beethoven’s unpublished works are masterpieces. So, in terms of coverage, this set would give you a recording of almost everything significant that Beethoven wrote.

Next I will give you an overview of the box and then we’ll come back to the different elements in more detail; this section is really about testing out whether you might just be interested. In physical terms, it is only about the size of a CD case cubed – a very positive feature – and some of the artists are listed on the side. Karajan and Giulini are at the top of the list although they conduct but one and two works respectively, albeit major ones. Once one has mastered how to open the box, essentially by dismantling it, the contents look crammed but there is quite a lot of extraneous cardboard inside to hold the paper-thin disc envelopes in place. For one moment I mistook the cardboard for two chunky booklets but, in terms of documentation, there is simply a track listing. Dates of recordings are given in years and on a "wholesale" basis – for example the piano sonatas are noted as 1968-1974. The earliest date seems to be 1957 so it seems likely that all are in stereo and the two violin romances from 1996 appear to be the only digital recordings. They seem to be there merely to allow "ADD/DDD" to be claimed. Shame on you EMI, particularly as Menuhin’s performances of these works would have done nicely and legitimately allowed another big name to be placed on the side on the box. Most of the material is from the late 1950s and 1960s and some of it may be having a last outing before EMI lose the exclusivity of the copyright. Nevertheless, apart from the odd exception, the sound quality should not be a deterrent. As we will see, most of these recordings are worth having and few of them are otherwise available at the moment.

For the most part, the various genres are effectively complete sets by the same artists – the major exception is the piano concertos for which Emil Gilels plays the first, second and fourth, and Bruno Leonardo Gelber plays the third and fifth. The symphonies and overtures are played by the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under André Cluytens, and the soloist in the violin concerto is David Oistrakh. The piano sonatas are the work of Eric Heidsieck who also partners Paul Tortelier in the cello sonatas. In the violin sonatas Christian Ferras is accompanied by Pierre Barbizet. The string quartets are the later recordings of the Hungarian String Quartet and the Hungarian Trio feature in the piano trios - they were two completely separate groups. The Melos Ensemble play the large chamber works: the Piano Quintet, Sextet, Septet and Octet. In the sacred choral music we get Giulini’s Missa Solemnis and Mass in C. Fidelio is Karajan’s 1971 recording featuring Jon Vickers and Helga Dernesch in the leading roles. The final disc has Birgit Nilsson singing Ah, Perfido! and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau singing lieder. So, if enough of that appeals, read on!

Symphonies and Overtures

The cycle of symphonies recorded by André Cluytens with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra in the late 1950s is consistently good. It was once a mainstay of the Classics for Pleasure LP catalogue and has been out on CD before on Royal Classics. The sound is indistinguishable from that issue with quality which is about average for its early stereo vintage although rather light in the bass. It will be interesting to see what the likes of Mark Obert-Thorn or Andrew Rose can do with it when the copyright expires in a year or two. The playing of the Berlin Philharmonic is highly committed throughout the cycle without being as pristine as it later was in Karajan’s cycles for DG. In terms of interpretations, the Eroica and the Choral symphonies are not quite as stirring as they can be but the fifth, sixth and seventh symphonies are readings of the highest order. In the Pastoral symphony Cluytens captures perfectly the spirit of each movement and, if there is a better version of this work on record, I haven’t yet heard it. In the ninth symphony Cluytens takes a generally spacious view. Frederick Guthrie is a slightly disappointing bass soloist but the other vocal contributions hit the spot, particularly tenor Nicolai Gedda. The same forces also give us six overtures in the same vein with the Leonoras being represented by No. 3.


David Oistrakh is the soloist in the violin concerto, a reading emphasising beauty and notable for a very long-breathed first movement. He is well supported by Cluytens, here conducting French radio orchestral forces. Afterwards John Lill plays the solo part in the wonderful Choral Fantasy with its pre-echoes of the ninth symphony. Alexander Gibson directs the erstwhile Scottish National Orchestra – and presumably their chorus although this is not stated – in a splendid reading, again coming from the Classics for Pleasure LP catalogue. These recordings have come up well on CD but the sound quality in the other concerto recordings is generally much less convincing. The Triple Concerto takes the wooden spoon in the whole box in this regard. Lev Oborin is the pianist but his piano seems to be in a world of its own or possibly in a bathroom. David Oistrakh and Sviatoslav Knushevitsky are more central to the sound picture and the late 1950s Philharmonia Orchestra is conducted by Sir Malcolm Sargent. As an interpretation it is fair enough but it is hard to believe EMI doesn’t have something better sounding in the vaults. The Gilels recordings of the first and second piano concertos have rather better sound but, as in other recordings from EMI France of the period, they are light in the bass. Gilels is sometimes wayward – for example in the slow movement of the first concerto which is taken at an exaggeratedly slow tempo. He also lingers a little in the slow movement of the second concerto but less intrusively and there is real poetry here. He is nothing short of majestic throughout the fourth concerto which was recorded with the Philharmonia Orchestra under Leopold Ludwig in markedly better sound – this is one of the gems of the box. Bruno Leonardo Gelber’s third and fifth were made about a decade later with the New Philharmonia Orchestra under Ferdinand Leitner. Gelber‘s readings are powerful conceptions and he is well supported by Leitner. Tempi tend towards extremes and just occasionally the music almost runs away from him. The recorded sound is rather inconsistent – mostly it is unobtrusive but there are some patches of hardness and unnatural piano tone. Overall, the concertos are a mixed bag that made me hanker for the likes of Perahia and Kovacevich but I shall certainly return to Gilels in the fourth piano concerto.

String quartets

The Hungarian String Quartet’s 1960s cycle sounds well and is made up of consistently well-played if not very distinctive readings. Whilst the greatness that beckons from the last of the Op.18 quartets is here evident – the slow introduction to the finale is magnificently played – the Razumovsky’s are less successful, particularly Op.59 No 3. The next quartet – The Harp – almost makes up for that and with No. 12 the Hungarians step up a gear. Their readings of the late works lack a little of the intensity of the Lindsays and more closely resemble the Talich quartet’s approach. Ultimately this is easier listening if less moving. The Große Fuge is included in its original place in Op.130, which is fair enough, and the finale which was written to replace it follows on. Oddly, having followed the published order all the way to the last two quartets, these are reversed when Op.135 could easily have fitted on the same disc as Op.132. These recordings on LP were my introduction to the Beethoven quartets and I enjoyed revisiting them.


The Piano trios included here are the six works in the regular canon plus the early trio in E flat (WoO38), two sets of variations (Kakadu and Op.44) and the single movement Allegretto, all played by the Hungarian Trio. The Op.11 trio is given in the clarinet version with André Boutard as the clarinettist. These recordings date from about 1960 and sound well for their age. The Hungarian Trio proves to be a reliable guide and in its hands the merits of the three works Beethoven published as Op.1 are readily appreciated. They are also very fine in the later works – the two Op.70 trios and the Archduke. In the latter they find fun in scherzo and plumb the depths of the slow movement most affectingly. Beethoven’s string trios are all early works – the opus numbers are 3, 8 and 9 with the latter being a set of three works, all in standard four movement format. The earliest work interpolates two extra minuets and Op. 8 has five movements and the title Serenade. These five works are effectively performed by the Trio à cordes Francais.

Miscellaneous chamber works

Tucked away in the middle of the set on CDs 33 and 34 are two discs of relatively rare music for small forces. The first of these starts with four works for mandolin and harpsichord. Marked Siciliano, Allegro, Adagio and Andante with variations respectively they form represent a charming suite without ever sounding like Beethoven. Apparently they were first performed in 1796 but I haven’t been able to find out anything else about them. The Op.25 flute Serenade is reasonably familiar and Michel Debost’s flute is a joy to hear. He also plays in the trio for flute, bassoon and piano WoO37 which follows. In this work bassoonist Amaury Wallez has no walk on part and the combination works well. The opener on disc 34 is a B flat flute sonata in four movements which is attributed to Beethoven although Grove online lists it in the "doubtful authenticity" category and it doesn’t even have a WoO number. There follows ten of the Airs variés for flute and piano, an assortment from Opp.105 and 107 in no particular order. These seem to be inspired by folk-songs from various places around Europe. Debost is partnered by pianist Christian Ivaldi throughout the disc, all of which is pleasant enough – the lighter side of the great man.

About ten discs later on the Melos Ensemble play the chamber works for larger forces – the Piano/Wind Quintet, Sextet with two horns, Septet and Wind Octet. These are all excellent performances decently recorded. The Quintet is a relatively early work modelled on Mozart’s K452 but by no means superior to it. The Septet is well-known but less deserving of it than the Sextet Op. 81b and Octet Op.103, both marvellously original works dating from 1810 and around 1792 respectively - the opus number of the latter is misleading.

Violin and cello sonatas

The ten violin sonatas are represented by the generally easy-going readings of Christian Ferras from the very end of the 1950s. His often sweet tone was well-captured by the recording and he had a sympathetic accompanist in Pierre Barbizet. There are few ups and downs although the A major sonata Op.30 No.1 isn’t totally convincing. Otherwise this is a cycle of increasing power, properly peaking with the last three sonatas. The Kreutzer is particularly fine and Op.96 has poise and restrained lyricism. This repertoire has been dominated by Perlman and Ashkenazy on Decca for many years; these readings do not reach their heights but are nevertheless a valid alternative.

Paul Tortelier features on two discs containing the five cello sonatas and three sets of variations – on themes from Judas Maccabeus and Die Zauberflöte. He is partnered by Eric Heidsieck who is sympathetic and much less erratic than in his recordings of the piano sonatas (see below). Tortelier’s approach is generally lyrical and slightly restrained although he does cut loose at the right moments, notably in the greatest of the sonatas – the A major Op.69. I enjoyed these readings immensely – definitely one of the jewels of this box although it is worth noting that they are available separately as a bargain twofer (569422-2).

Piano music

Eric Heidsieck’s readings of the piano sonatas are frustratingly variable and, arguably, the principal Achilles heel of the set. In the early works in particular he is very free with variations in tempo. I was sometime left feeling that Beethoven was at the service of his considerable virtuosity rather than the reverse. In general, this is a cycle which improves as one goes through it but there are some significant disappointments in both early and late works – most notably Op.10 No.3 and the Hammerklavier, both of which have outer movements which sound quite mannered. The Pastorale is engaging in the outer movements but spoilt by perverse basic tempi in a very brisk Andante and turgid scherzo. Heidsieck certainly took Beethoven’s tempo marking of Presto seriously and had the technique to do so. Unfortunately though, the finales of the Moonlight and Appassionata only just avoid running away from him. There are some successes – notably Op.7, Op.22 and the Waldstein. Some of the smaller, more relaxed works such as Opp.54 and 78 also go rather well. Heidsieck turns the Rondo finale of Op.49 No.1 into a creation that sounds as the opus number might reflect when it was written. Since the work was probably the very first, this might not be considered an advantage. In the great final trilogy Heidsieck is at his very best in Op.111 which is a finely sustained reading. The recorded sound is perfectly acceptable – and consistent – but I don’t think this cycle would be a good choice as one’s only versions of the sonatas. I would rate it some way behind Daniel Barenboim’s EMI series which was made in same period.

Apart from the sonatas there are three other discs of piano music in the box – one with the Diabelli variations, one of the bagatelles and one of odds and ends with the Eroica variations being much the most important work. The first two and most of the third are played by Georges Solchany who was the pianist of the Hungarian Trio. The Diabelli variations are well-played technically but sound a bit literal at times and this is no match for the fantasy of Stephen Kovacevich (then Bishop) who made a recording for Philips at around the same time (1970). In the bagatelles Solchany plays all of the Opp.33, 119 and 126 sets and a couple of extras. He captures their frequent quirkiness well and I found this disc most enjoyable. The Eroica variations are good too although the rest of the items on disc 19 are among the least essential works in the set – for example the God save the King variations, here played by Georges Cziffra.

Choral Music

Beethoven’s sacred choral music is represented by three works on three discs – the Missa Solemnis, Mass in C and Oratorio Christ on the Mount of Olives. The latter is a rarity and its opus number of 85 does not reflect its composition in 1803. The performance comes from Bonn in 1970 and is directed by Volker Wangerheim. Nicolai Gedda is in good voice as Christ in a work which Beethoven seems to pay homage to Bach. Both masses are conducted by Carlo Maria Giulini with London-based forces recorded in the 1970s. Soloists are starry - Janet Baker is mezzo-soprano in both works – and the recorded sound is decent. Thirty-plus years on Giulini’s deliberate approach seems old-fashioned although the dedication shines through. The end results though, particularly in the Missa Solemnis, seem to me to suffer from the lack of momentum.


Karajan’s 1970 Fidelio doesn’t seem to be otherwise available at the moment. As one would expect, the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra plays superbly and it is well-recorded. Compared to the Klemperer recording made a few years earlier by EMI it is relatively light in feeling, both less dramatic and atmospheric. For example the opening scene of Act II doesn’t feel like it is set in a dungeon. Jon Vickers – also Florestan for Klemperer – is excellent and Helga Dernesch sings Leonore very well. There is a smattering of dialogue which often seems understated. The booklet credits Karl Ridderbusch as the villain Don Pizarro and fails to name Rocco. Two other sources I have checked indicate that Zoltan Keleman sings Pizarro and Ridderbusch sings Rocco.


On the final disc, Ah, perfido! comes off very well for Birgit Nilsson who is accompanied by the Philharmonia Orchestra under Heinz Wallberg. The late-1950s sound quality for the lieder which make up the rest of the disc is less sympathetic but Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau is in very fine voice. In the great cycle An die ferne Geliebte he is wonderfully accompanied by Gerald Moore making this is a most treasurable version.


This review comes with the caveat that, although in a few cases I knew the recording already, it is based on only one hearing of each disc during an intensive month of listening to Beethoven and almost nothing else. It has generally been a positive experience. Unsurprisingly there are some highs and lows but perhaps the general level of artistic and technical consistency throughout the box is worthy of some emphasis. There are just a few records I would not want to be without – Cluytens in the Pastoral symphony, Gilels in the fourth piano concerto, Tortelier in the third cello sonata and Fischer Dieskau in An die ferne Geliebte spring most readily to mind. There is probably just one piece that I will only play again if pressed – the Triple Concerto – and most of the rest fall into the worthy enough category.

To return to the question of who is this box for? The relative newcomer to collecting recorded classical music should really be discovering a range of composers before they cover one as broadly as is done here but, if they are set on acquiring a large dose of Beethoven cheaply, this would certainly fit the bill. People like myself who grew up with some of these recordings in LP days might want to revisit the era and plug some gaps in the collection, and it would make a good present for them. Perhaps it could be bought between a few friends and shared out or passed round on a timeshare basis? Of course it is always better to run horses for courses but the price gain here is very considerable. Two EMI budget boxes covering the symphonies, piano concertos and piano sonatas – Klemperer and Barenboim are the principal artists – occupy 19 CDs and currently cost almost exactly the same as these 50 discs. I have both these sets and, although they are generally preferable to the versions in this box, if forced to choose, I would now part with them before this box.

The final word should be about the composer whose marvellous music is real reason for considering this set - don’t roll over yet Beethoven. If you can agree with that perhaps you should be checking out this box.

Patrick C Waller

Full track-listing

CD 1
Symphonie n°1 en ut majeur Op.21
Symphonie n°3 en mi bémol majeur Op.55 « Héroïque »
Orchestre Philharmonique de Berlin/André Cluytens

CD 2
Symphonie n°2 en ré majeur Op.36
Symphonie n°4 en si bémol majeur Op.60
Orchestre Philharmonique de Berlin/André Cluytens

CD 3
Symphonie n°5 en ut mineur Op.67
Symphonie n°7 en la majeur Op.92
Orchestre Philharmonique de Berlin/André Cluytens

CD 4 71.29
Symphonie n°6 en fa majeur Op.68 « Pastorale »
Symphonie n°8 en fa majeur Op.93
Orchestre Philharmonique de Berlin/André Cluytens

CD 5
Symphonie n°9 en ré mineur Op.125 « avec chœurs »
Gré Brouwenstijn soprano – Kerstin Meyer contralto / Nicolaï Gedda ténor – Frederike Guthrie basse
Chœurs de la Cathédrale Sainte-Hedwige de Berlin/Karl Forster / Orchestre Philharmonique de Berlin/André Cluytens

CD 6
1 Coriolan 8.39
2 Egmont 9.13
3 Prométhée 5.35
4 Les Ruines d’Athènes 5.03
5 Fidelio 7.08
6 Leonore n°3 15.13
7 Romance pour violon & orchestre n°1 en sol majeur Op.40* 7.15
8 Romance pour violon & orchestre n°2 en fa majeur Op.50* 8.09
Orchestre Philharmonique de Berlin/André Cluytens / *Patrice Fontanarosa violon – Berliner Sinfonie-Orchester/Michael Sch?nwandt

CD 7 65.21
Concerto pour piano n°1 en ut majeur Op.15
Concerto pour piano n°2 en si bémol majeur Op.19
Emil Guilels piano – Orchestre de la Société des Concerts du Conservatoire/André Vandernoot

CD 8
Concerto pour piano n°3 en ut mineur Op.37
Concerto pour piano n°5 en mi bémol majeur Op.73 « L’Empereur »
Bruno Leonardo Gelber piano – New Philharmonia Orchestra/Ferdinand Leitner

CD 9
Concerto pour piano n°4 en sol majeur Op.58
Triple Concerto pour piano, violon & violoncelle en ut majeur Op.56*
Emil Gilels piano / *Lev Oborine piano – David Oistrakh violon – Sviatoslav Knouchevitzky violoncelle
Philharmonia Orchestra/Leopold Ludwig 1-3/Sir Malcom Sargent 4-6

CD 10 65.33
Concerto pour violon en ré majeur Op.61
4 Fantaisie pour piano, chœur & orchestre en ut mineur Op.80* 19.48
David Oistrakh violon – Orchestre National de la Radiodiffusion Française/André Cluytens / *John Lill piano – Scottish National Orchestra/Sir Alexander Gibson

CD 11
Sonate pour piano n°2 en la majeur Op.2 n°2
Sonate pour piano n°3 en ut majeur Op.2 n°3
Sonate pour piano n°4 en mi bémol majeur Op.7
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 12
Sonate pour piano n°1 en fa mineur Op.2 n°1
Sonate pour piano n°5 en ut mineur Op.10 n°1
Sonate pour piano n°6 en fa majeur Op.10 n°2
Sonate pour piano n°7 en ré majeur Op.10 n°3
Sonate pour piano n°22 en fa majeur Op.54
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 13
Sonate pour piano n°8 en ut mineur Op.13 « Pathétique »
Sonate pour piano n°9 en mi majeur Op.14 n°1
Sonate pour piano n°10 en sol majeur Op.14 n°2
Sonate pour piano n°11 en si bémol majeur Op.22
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 14
Sonate pour piano n°12 en la bémol majeur Op.26 « Marche funèbre »
Sonate pour piano n°13 en mi bémol majeur Op.27 n°1 « Quasi una fantasia »
Sonate pour piano n°14 en ut dièse mineur Op.27 n°2 « Clair de lune »
Sonate pour piano n°15 en ré majeur Op.28 « Pastorale »
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 15
Sonate pour piano n°16 en sol majeur Op.31 n°1
Sonate pour piano n°17 en ré mineur Op.31 n°2 « La Tempête »
Sonate pour piano n°18 en mi bémol majeur Op.31 n°3
Sonate pour piano n°20 en sol majeur Op.49 n°2
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 16
Sonate pour piano n°19 en sol mineur Op.49 n°1
Sonate pour piano n°21 en ut majeur Op.53 « Waldstein »
Sonate pour piano n°23 en fa mineur Op.57 « Appassionata »
Sonate pour piano n°25 en sol majeur Op.79
Sonate pour piano n°26 en mi bémol majeur Op.81a « Les Adieux »
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 17
Sonate pour piano n°27 en mi mineur Op.90
Sonate pour piano n°28 en la majeur Op.101
Sonate pour piano n°29 en si bémol majeur Op.106 « Hammerklavier »
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 18
Sonate pour piano n°24 en fa dièse majeur Op.78 « A Thérèse »
Sonate pour piano n°30 en mi majeur Op.109
Sonate pour piano n°31 en la bémol majeur Op.110
Sonate pour piano n°32 en ut mineur Op.111
Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 19
1 Pour Elise, bagatelle en la mineur WoO 59 2.57
2 Rondo a capriccio en sol majeur Op.129 ‘colère pour un sou perdu’ 6.29
3 Variations en ut majeur sur ‘God save the King’ WoO 78 8.36
Variations en mi bémol majeur Op.35 « Eroica »
4 Introduzione col basso del Tema – Tema 3.28
5 Var.1-15 16.45
6 Finale: alla fuga 5.09
7 6 Variations en fa majeur Op.34 13.51
8 6 Variations en ré majeur Op.76 6.37
9 8 Variations en fa majeur sur ‘Tandeln und scherzen’ de Süssmayr WoO 76 8.56
1, 2 Danielle Laval, 3 Georges Cziffra, 4-9 Georges Solchany piano

CD 20
33 Variations sur une valse de Diabelli Op.120
Georges Solchany piano

CD 21
Bagatelles pour piano
1 Bagatelle en ut mineur (1797) 3.36
Bagatelles Op.33
Bagatelles Op.119
Bagatelles Op.126
Georges Solchany piano

CD 22
Sonate pour violon & piano n°1 en ré majeur Op.12 n°1
Sonate pour violon & piano n°2 en la majeur Op.12 n°2 17.50
Sonate pour violon & piano n°3 en mi bémol majeur Op.12 n°3 16.40
Sonate pour violon & piano n°4 en la mineur Op.23 16.58
Christian Ferras violon – Pierre Barbizet piano

CD 23
Sonate pour violon & piano n°5 en fa majeur Op.24 « Le Printemps »
Sonate pour violon & piano n°6 en la majeur Op.30 n°1
Sonate pour violon & piano n°7 en ut mineur Op.30 n°2
Christian Ferras violon – Pierre Barbizet piano

CD 24
Sonate pour violon & piano n°8 en sol majeur Op.30 n°3
Sonate pour violon & piano n°9 en la majeur Op.47 « A Kreutzer »
Sonate pour violon & piano n°10 en sol majeur Op.96
Christian Ferras violon – Pierre Barbizet piano

CD 25
Sonate pour violoncelle & piano n°1 en fa majeur Op.5 n°1
Sonate pour violoncelle & piano n°2 en sol mineur Op.5 n°2
Sonate pour violoncelle & piano n°3 en la majeur Op.69
Paul Tortelier violoncelle - Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 26
Sonate pour violoncelle & piano n°4 en ut majeur Op.102 n°1
Sonate pour violoncelle & piano n°5 en ré majeur Op.102 n°2
12 Variations sur un thème de Judas Macchabée WoO 45 11.43
7 Variations sur ‘Bei Männern’ (La Flûte enchantée) WoO 46 9.24
12 Variations sur ‘Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen’ (La Flûte enchantée) Op.66 9.34
Paul Tortelier violoncelle - Eric Heidsieck piano

CD 27
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en mi bémol majeur Op.1 n°1
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en sol majeur Op.1 n°2
Trio Hongrois / Georges Solchany piano – Arpad Gerecz violon – Vilmos Palotai violoncelle

CD 28
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en ut mineur Op.1 n°3
Trio pour piano, clarinette & violoncelle en si bémol majeur Op.11*
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en si bémol majeur WoO 39
Variations pour piano, violon & violoncelle sur ‘Ich bin des Schneider Kakadu’ extr. de l’opéra ‘Die Schwestern von Prag’ de Wenzel Müller Op.121a 17.08
Trio Hongrois
* avec André Boutard clarinette

CD 29
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en ré majeur Op.70 n°1
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en mi bémol majeur Op.70 n°2
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en mi bémol majeur WoO 38
Trio Hongrois

CD 30
Trio pour piano, violon & violoncelle en si bémol majeur Op.97 « A l’Archiduc »
Variations pour piano, violon & violoncelle sur un thème original en mi bémol majeur Op.44
Trio Hongrois

CD 31
Trio pour violon, alto & violoncelle en sol majeur Op.9 n°1
Trio pour violon, alto & violoncelle en ré majeur Op.9 n°2
Trio pour violon, alto & violoncelle en ut mineur Op.9 n°3
Trio à cordes Français / Gérard Jarry violon – Serge Collot alto – Michel Tournus violoncelle

CD 32
Trio pour violon, alto & violoncelle en mi bémol majeur Op.3
Sérénade pour violon, alto & violoncelle en ré majeur Op.8
Trio à cordes Français

CD 33
Sonatine pour mandoline & clavecin en ut majeur WoO 44a
Sonatine pour mandoline & clavecin en ut mineur WoO 43a
Sérénade pour flûte, violon & alto en ré majeur Op.25
Trio pour flûte, basson & piano en sol mineur WoO 37
1-4 Maria Scivittaro mandoline – Robert Veyron-Lacroix clavecin / 5-10 Michel Debost flûte – Gérard Jarry violon - Serge Collot alto / 11-13 Michel Debost flûte – Amaury Wallez basson – Christian Ivaldi piano

CD 34
Sonate pour flûte & piano en si bémol majeur, Anhang 4 (Attribué à Beethoven)
Airs variés pour flûte & piano
Michel Debost flûte – Christian Ivaldi piano

CD 35
Quatuor à cordes n°1 en fa majeur Op.18 n°1
Quatuor à cordes n°2 en sol majeur Op.18 n°2
Quatuor à cordes n°3 en ré majeur Op.18 n°3
Quatuor Hongrois / Zoltan Szekely, Michael Kuttner violons – Denes Keromzay alto – Gabor Magyar violoncelle

CD 36
Quatuor à cordes n°4 en ut mineur Op.18 n°4
Quatuor à cordes n°5 en la majeur Op.18 n°5
Quatuor à cordes n°6 en si bémol majeur Op.18 n°6
Quatuor Hongrois

CD 37
Quatuor à cordes n°7 en fa majeur Op.59 n°1 « Razoumovsky »
Quatuor à cordes n°8 en mi mineur Op.59 n°2 « Razoumovsky »
Quatuor Hongrois

CD 38
Quatuor à cordes n°9 en ut majeur Op.59 n°3 « Razoumovsky »
Quatuor à cordes n°10 en mi bémol majeur Op.74 « Les Harpes »
Quatuor Hongrois

CD 39
Quatuor à cordes n°11 en fa mineur Op.95 « Quartetto serioso »
Quatuor à cordes n°12 en mi bémol majeur Op.127
Quatuor Hongrois

CD 40
Quatuor à cordes n°13 en si bémol majeur Op.130
Quatuor Hongrois

CD 41
Quatuor à cordes n°14 en ut dièse mineur Op.131
Quatuor à cordes n°16 en fa majeur Op.135
Quatuor Hongrois

CD 42
Quatuor à cordes n°15 en la mineur Op.132
Quatuor Hongrois

CD 43
Quintette pour piano, hautbois, clarinette, cor & basson en mi bémol majeur Op.16
Sextuor pour 3 violons, 2 cors & violoncelle en mi bémol majeur Op.81b
Marche pour 2 clarinettes, 2 bassons & 2 cors en si bémol majeur WoO 29 1.15
Rondino pour 2 hautbois, 2 clarinettes, 2 cors & 2 bassons WoO 25 6.47
Duo pour clarinette & basson en ut majeur WoO27
Membres du Melos Ensemble / Lamar Crawson piano – Gervase de Peyer, Keith Puddy clarinette – Peter Graeme, Sarah Barringson hautbois – William Waterhouse, Edgar Williams basson – James Buck, Neill Sanders cor

CD 44
Septuor pour violon, alto, violoncelle, contrebasse, clarinette, cor & basson en mi bémol majeur Op.20
Octuor pour 2 hautbois, 2 clarinettes, 2 cors & 2 bassons en mi bémol majeur Op.103
Melos Ensemble / Emanuel Hurwitz violon – Cecil Aronowitz alto – Terence Weil violoncelle – Adrian Beers contrebasse – Gervase de Peyer, Keith Puddy clarinette – Peter Graeme, Sarah Barringson hautbois – William Waterhouse, Edgar Williams basson – James Buck, Neill Sanders cor

CD 45
Le Christ au Mont des Oliviers, oratorio op.85
1 Introduction (Grave –Adagio) 6.27
2 Jehova, du mein Vater! Jésus 3.57
3 Meine Seele ist erschüttert Jésus 4.42
4 Erzittre, Erde, Jehova’s Sohn liegt hier! Seraphin 1.45
5 Preist, preist des Erlösers Güte Seraphin 1.24
6 O Heil euch, ihr Erlösten Chœur/Seraphin 5.17
7 Doch weh ! Die frech entehren Chœur 1.54
8 Verkündet, Seraph, mir dein Mund Jésus/Seraphin 1.10
9 So ruhe denn mit ganzer Schwere Jésus/Seraphin 6.58
10 Willkommen, Tod Jésus 1.10
11 Wir haben ihn gesehen Chœur 2.13
12 Die mich zu fangen ausgezogen sind Jésus/Chœur 1.46
13 Hier ist er, der Verbannte Chœur 2.35
14 Nicht ungestraft soll der Verwegnen Schaar Pierre/Jésus 1.20
15 In meinen Adern wühlen gerechter Zorn und Wut Pierre/Jésus/Seraphin 4.58
16 Auf ! Auf ! Ergreifet den Varräther Jésus/Chœur 3.01
17 Welten singen Dank und Ehre… Preiset ihm Chœur 4.32
Christina Deutekom Seraphin – Nicolaï Gedda Jésus – Hans Sotin Pierre / Solistes, Chœur Philharmonique de la Ville de Bonn – Chœur du Théâtre Municipal de Bonn, Orchestre de la Beethoven Halle de Bonn/Volker Wangenheim

CD 46
Missa solemnis en ré majeur Op.123 (début)
Heather Harper soprano – Janet Baker mezzo-soprano – Robert Tear ténor – Hans Sotin basse
New Philharmonia Chorus & London Philharmonic Orchestra/Carlo Maria Giulini

CD 47
Missa solemnis en ré majeur Op.123 (fin)
Heather Harper soprano – Janet Baker mezzo-soprano
Robert Tear ténor – Hans Sotin basse
New Philharmonia Chorus & London Philharmonic Orchestra/Carlo Maria Giulini

Messe en ut majeur Op.86
Elly Ameling soprano – Janet Baker mezzo-soprano / Theo Altmeyer ténor – Marius Rintzler basse
New Philharmonia Chorus & Orchestra/Carlo Maria Giulini

CD 48
Fidelio opéra en 2 actes
Livret de Joseph Sonnleithner & Friedrich Treittschke, d’après Jean-Nicolas Bouilly
1 Ouverture 6.57
Acte I
2 Jetzt, Schätzchen, sind wir allen Jaquino/Marzelline 4.42
3 Der arme Jaquino dauert mich beinahe Marzelline 0.13
4 O wär’ ich schon mit dir vereint Marzelline 4.00
5 Ist Fidelio noch nicht zurück? Rocco/Marzelline/Leonore 0.35
6 Mir ist so wunderbar… Marzelline/Leonore/Rocco/Jaquino 4.41
7 Höre, Fidelio, wenn ich auch nicht weiß Rocco 0.26
8 …man braucht auch Rocco 2.40
9 Ihr könnt das leicht sagen, Meister Rocco Leonore/Rocco/Marzelline 2.08
10 Gut, Söhnchen, gut, hab’ immer Mut Rocco/Leonore/Marzelline 6.18
11 Marche 2.17
12 Depeschen? Pizarro/Rocco 0.34
13 Ha! Welche in Augenblick! Pizarro 2.58
14 Hauptmann, besteigen Sied en Turn Pizarro/Rocco 0.25
15 Jetzt, Alter, jetzt hat es Eile Pizarro/Rocco 4.38
16 Abscheulicher! Wo eilst du hin? Leonore 7.35
17 Vater Rocco, ich ersuchte Euch schon… Leonore/Marzelline/Rocco 0.36
18 n°10 Finale : O welche Lust! Chœur/2 prisonniers 7.16
19 Nun sprecht, wie sie ging’s Leonore/Rocco 5.16
20 Ach! Vater, eilt! Marzelline/Rocco/Jaquino/Leonore/Pizarro/Chœur 6.18

CD 49
Fidelio – Acte II
1 n°11 Introduction & air : Gott! Welch Dunkel hier! Florestan 11.23
2 n°12 Melodrame & duo : Wie kalt ist es in diesem unterirdischen Gewölbe! Leonore/Rocco 1.25
3 Nur hurtig fort… Rocco/Leonore 4.13
4 Er erwacht! Leonore/Rocco/Florestan 1.23
5 n°13 Trio : Euch werde Lohn in besser’n Welten Florestan/Rocco/Leonore 6.36
6 Ist alles bereit? Rocco/Leonore/Florestan/Pizarro 0.39
7 n°14 Quatuor : Er sterbe! Doch er soll erst wissen… Pizarro/Florestan/Leonore/Rocco 3.41
8 Vater Rocco! Vater Rocco! Jaquino/Rocco 0.18
9 Es schlägt der Rache Stunde! Leonore/Florestan/Pizarro/Rocco 1.11
10 n°15 Duo : O namenlose Freude! Leonore/Florestan 2.58
11 n°16 Finale : Heil se idem Tag, heil sei der Stunde Chœur/Don Fernando/Rocco/Pizarro/Leonore/Marzelline 6.02
12 Du schlossest auf des Edlen Grab Don Fernando/Leonore/Florestan/Marzelline/Rocco/ Chœur/Jaquino 8.04
Helga Dernesch Leonore / Jon Vickers Florestan / Karl Ridderbusch Don Pizzaro / José van Dam Don Fernando
Helen Donath Marzelline / Horst Laubenthal Jaquino / Werner Hollweg 1er prisonnier / Siegfried Rudolf Frese 2ème prisonnier / Chœur de l’Opéra Allemand de Berlin – Orchestre Philharmonique de Berlin/Herbert von Karajan

CD 50
1 Ah, perfido! Op.65 13.14
2 An die ferne Geliebte (A la bien aimée lointaine) Op.98 Jeitteles
Auf dem Hügel sitz’ ich spähend – Wo die Berge so blau – Leichte Segler in der Höhen – Diese Wolken in den Höhen – Es kehret der Maien – Nimm sie hin den diese Lieder 14.14
7 Lieder de Goethe
3 Mailied Op.52 n°4 2.04
4 Marmotte Op.52 n°7 0.38
5 Neue Liebe, neues Lebe Op.75 n°2 2.55
6 Aus Goethes Faust Op.75 n°3 1.55
7 Wonne der Wehmut Op.83 n°1 3.00
8 Sehnsucht Op.83 n°2 2.03
9 Mit einem gemalten Bande Op.83 n°3 1.43
10 Adelaïde Matthison 6.11
6 Lieder de Gellert Op.48
11 Bitten 1.49
12 Die Liebe des Nächsten 1.09
13 Vom Tode 2.15
14 Die Ehre Gottes aus der Natur 2.23
15 Gottes Macht und Vorsehung 0.40
16 Busslied 4.48
1 Birgit Nilsson soprano – Philharmonia Orchestra/Heinz Wallberg / 2-16 Dietrich Fischer Dieskau baryton – 2 Gerald Moore, 3-16 Hertha Klust piano



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