Tag Archives: romanticism

Leopold Stokowski, Rhapsodies

No one who ever saw Disney’s Fantasia can forget Leopold Stokowski, who in many ways was the star of the film, even though he shared conducting honors with Mickey Mouse. Stokowski’s reputation as one of classical music’s greats is still … Continue reading

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Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 3 in A Minor, Op. 44, Chanson Georgienne, Op. 4. No 4, Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, Op. 30; Sergei Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in C. Op. 26

Music by Russian composers in the twentieth century presents some interesting contrasts, not only between those who remained in the Soviet Union after the 1917 Revolution, such as Dmitri Shostakovich, but also among the expatriates, such as, in this case, … Continue reading

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César Franck’s Symphony in D Minor; Igor Stravinsky’s Pétrouchka

Music critic Roger Dettmer of the Chicago American called Pierre Monteux’s performance of César Franck’s Symphony in D Minor “a model of rectitude and dignity.” Anyone who has paid much attention to the course of music in the 19th century, … Continue reading

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Piotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky’s The Three Piano Concertos; Modest Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition; Mily Balakirev’s Islamey

Piotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky seems to have made a habit of writing concertos that were condemned as “unplayable” and then took their places near the top of the roster in the romantic canon. Like his Violin Concerto, Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto in … Continue reading

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Johannes Brahms, Piano Works

Piano Concerto No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 15 [Chicago Symphony Orchestra, James Levine, cond.]; Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat Major, Op. 83 [Boston Symphony Orchestra, Bernard Haitink, cond.]; Two Rhapsodies, Op. 79, Three Intermezzos, Op. 117, Four Pieces … Continue reading

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Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen

Everyone has their national epic. The Greeks have the Iliad and the Odyssey, the French have Le Chanson de Roland, the British get to pick among Beowulf, The Mabinogion, and the tales of the Arthur Cycle, and the Germans have … Continue reading

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Gustav Mahler: The Complete Symphonies

Both Tim Page and Erik Ryding, in their essays accompanying this Sony reissue of Leonard Bernstein’s landmark cycle of the complete symphonies of Gustav Mahler, give Bernstein pride of place in Mahler’s “rehabilitation” in the 1960s. While I don’t want … Continue reading

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Ludwig van Beethoven: The Complete String Quartets

Beethoven Early String Quartets Beethoven Middle String Quartets Beethoven Late String Quartets Beethoven String Quartets Live (DVD) Mmm . . . two of my favorite things in one review: Beethoven and string quartets. I willingly confess to a weakness for … Continue reading

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