One of the most grown-up review sites around

2019
51,000 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here

     
  
 

 

International mailing


  Founder: Len Mullenger             Senior Editor: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider

TROUBADISC

colourful imaginative harmony
Renate Eggebrecht violin


Leticia Gómez-Tagle
Chopin, Liszt, Scarlatti


Book 1 Book 2 Book3
Mota The Triptych: -Website



Acte Prealable returns
with New Releases


Superior performance


Shostakovich 6&7 Nelsons
Notable


Verdi Requiem Thielemann


Marianna Henriksson
An outstanding recital


Arnold Bax
Be converted


this terrific disc


John Buckley
one of my major discoveries


François-Xavier Roth
A game-changing Mahler 3

........................................

Bryden Thomson


Symphonies


Vaughan Williams Concertos


RVW Orchestral

 

REVIEW
Plain text for smartphones & printers

We are currently offering in excess of 51,000 reviews


Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and keep us afloat

 

New Releases

Naxos Classical


Nimbus Podcast


Obtain 10% discount



Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
(THE Polish label)
Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
   
Rob Barnett
Senior Editor
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Vacant
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

Support us financially by purchasing this disc from
Solti: Journey of a Lifetime: A film by Georg Wübbolt (2012) [52.00]
Bonus Concert [54.00]: Mussorgsky Prelude to Khovanshchina; Prokofiev Classical Symphony; Shostakovich Symphony No.1: Chicago Symphony Orchestra (1977)
Sound Format: PCM Stereo
Picture Format: 16:9 (Documentary), 4:3 (Bonus Concert), 1080i
Region: A,B,C
Documentary Subtitles in English, German, French, Spanish and Korean
ARTE/UNITEL CLASSICA 711 804 [106:00]

This disc contains two items, the documentary film and the so-called 'bonus' which is a concert by the CSO conducted by Solti and recorded in the Chicago Orchestra Hall in October 1977.
 
The documentary is the reason to purchase this Blu-ray so it will be dealt with first. It is mainly the story of his life and growing reputation told in archive film and through interview clips with Solti himself, speaking in German, plus family and professional colleagues such as his second wife Valerie Solti, conductor Valery Gergiev and theatre director Sir Peter Jonas.
 
Contributions are intelligent and interesting and there is thankfully little by way of padding. There is some linking narration and the occasional musical extract. The archive film is sometimes in the wrong aspect ratio which seems strange for an otherwise very professional production. The onscreen titling is largely very clear and appropriate except for the members of the 'Vienna Phil. Orchestra' whose truncated appellation seems completely unnecessary when the full name would fit. The one questionable aspect of his story as told here is the assumption that the Chicago years were somehow better than the rest and that prior to him the CSO was not a very significant orchestra. 'What about the 'minor' figure of Fritz Reiner who led them in the 1950s and 1960s?' I found myself asking the screen. A UK viewer may also ask what happened to all those superb recordings and concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra, of which there is no mention. Despite this I found the 52 minutes of this film compulsive viewing and was only sorry there wasn't more of it.
 
The bonus concert is a superfluous add-on because it is oddly uninteresting musically and looks and sounds what it is, a rather old TV film. The performances are efficient but not one of these performances couldn't be bettered elsewhere. The main work, Shostakovich's 1st Symphony, comes over as brisk and rather literal. What is left is a lengthy opportunity to watch Solti at work, the which is not half as interesting as watching him in rehearsal in the documentary film.
 
The insert has a readable short essay on Solti's life and career by James Jolly.

Dave Billinge