Search found 140 matches

by stefanher
Fri Jan 14, 2011 4:19 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: American "provincial" orchestras
Replies: 12
Views: 2652

American "provincial" orchestras

I recently heard a recording by the Grand Rapids Orchestra- hardly the most celebrated ensemble in the USA- & was amazed at their standard as I have been when hearing other lesser known orchestras such as the Nashville & Newark orchestras. This then is beginning to beg the question- is it fair to ta...
by stefanher
Thu Jan 13, 2011 7:27 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Where Did These 4 New Sony Opera Releases Come From?
Replies: 9
Views: 1086

Re: Where Did These 4 New Sony Opera Releases Come From?

And who cares about Lily Pons and Licia Albanese any more? I quite agree- we have so many singers with unique bell sounding voices & flawless coloratura now & voices big enough to fill the Met without miking that Pons should be consigned to the dustbin. As for Albanese there have been so many better...
by stefanher
Thu Jan 13, 2011 6:38 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD
Replies: 16
Views: 1827

Re: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD

You're probably right except that the only time I've ever conducted an orchestra is in front of my hifi speakers at home. I wasn't aware that the only people who select the new conductors were the players.
by stefanher
Thu Jan 13, 2011 3:58 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD
Replies: 16
Views: 1827

Re: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD

Whenever any classical musician gets a lot of attention in the mainstream media, without any scandal or "human interest" angle to pump up the story, it's a good thing. I don't see any downside at all to the attention now being paid to Gustavo Dudamel. Why be so grouchy? I agree completely... I supp...
by stefanher
Wed Jan 12, 2011 7:10 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD
Replies: 16
Views: 1827

Re: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD

Has any conductor in the history of music ever been hyped as much as Dudamel? I saw his proms concert with the Venezuelan Orchestra that was raved about by the British Press; this allowed me to at least draw some conclusions. But then of course we must realise the number of people like Sir Rattle w...
by stefanher
Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:50 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD
Replies: 16
Views: 1827

Re: LA & Dudamel Shown in HD

Has any conductor in the history of music ever been hyped as much as Dudamel? I saw his proms concert with the Venezuelan Orchestra that was raved about by the British Press; this allowed me to at least draw some conclusions. But then of course we must realise the number of people like Sir Rattle wh...
by stefanher
Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:15 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Books on Bach & music theory
Replies: 3
Views: 529

Books on Bach & music theory

This is going to sound strange from someone who has listened to music as long as I have but I still do not fully understand the structure of the fugue let alone ground bass (?) variations such as the Goldbergs. I have bought a number of music theory books in the past but these were always intended f...
by stefanher
Fri Jan 07, 2011 7:17 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Mahler's Second----best recording....?!
Replies: 46
Views: 12458

Re: Mahler's Second----best recording....?!

I assume this will be this group's future favourite recording: http://www.mdt.co.uk/MDTSite/product//6473632.htm Sir Simon Rattle's new Mahler 2 with the Berliner philharmoniker Tore F Steenslid Sotra, Norway http://www.steenslid.com Aah, I can already hear Chalkie's cheers! :lol: Tschüß, Jack Why ...
by stefanher
Fri Dec 17, 2010 8:22 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Opinions sought on Brendel's Mozart Concerto set
Replies: 25
Views: 5322

Re: Opinions sought on Brendel's Mozart Concerto set

Not my cup of tea but I must admit I think Brendel is overrated even in the Austro- German repertoire. For complete sets played with grace, feeling & spirituality try Perahia & the early Barenboim. For "political correctness" Brendel & Uchida are ideal- & boring. As for period instrument- don't get ...
by stefanher
Wed Dec 15, 2010 11:28 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Late Mozart Symphony recordings
Replies: 9
Views: 2866

Re: Late Mozart Symphony recordings

I have some of the Mackerras Prague as well as his SCO set- hence the query. Don't know what Bruggen's Mozart is like but if it's anything like his Haydn then I can give it a safe pass. Looks like I'll have to do what I originally suggested- listen to Gardiner & convince myself that that is the righ...
by stefanher
Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:54 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Late Mozart Symphony recordings
Replies: 9
Views: 2866

Late Mozart Symphony recordings

I hoped against hope that Levine's new recordings of these would answer my prayers as a recommendable affectionate recording of the above without the soulless vibratoless overdrive which has been imposed on us by the "authentic" movement. Apparently not according the Music Guide- Levine uses a sligh...
by stefanher
Wed Dec 15, 2010 6:45 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Horowitz in the 1970's
Replies: 17
Views: 1436

Re: Horowitz in the 1970's

Criticising Horowitz is a bit like desecrating a churchyard. Yes there are people mindless enough to do the latter... Why does everybody have to worship Horowitz, i'm not mindless, I just hold a different opinion to you...that's all it is, an opinion... I'm sorry if my comments were offensive but t...
by stefanher
Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:08 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: And By Contrast With Elly Ney there Was Adolf Busch
Replies: 3
Views: 608

Re: And By Contrast With Elly Ney there Was Adolf Busch

Yes a true man of principles. But he was hardly the ONLY non-Jewish musician to leave Nazi Germany after Hitler came to power...
by stefanher
Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:03 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Horowitz in the 1970's
Replies: 17
Views: 1436

Re: Horowitz in the 1970's

Criticising Horowitz is a bit like desecrating a churchyard. Yes there are people mindless enough to do the latter... I do accept that some of his DG recordings are not the equal of his earlier work- but there are exceptions- eg the live Moscow recital, And he did learn a new piano concerto for the ...
by stefanher
Tue Dec 14, 2010 8:17 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Was tenor Enrico Caruso really "exceptional"?
Replies: 29
Views: 3764

Re: Was tenor Enrico Caruso really "exceptional"?

Very sadly I find that listening for any length of time to the great singers- & I'll include Caruso - a bit like eating eating a whole box of the best Belgian chocolates available. I can only envy people like the NY opera crowd of the 1940's who could see Walkure starring Flagstad, Melchior, Kipnis ...
by stefanher
Sat Dec 11, 2010 4:16 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Best Prokofiev piano sonatas?
Replies: 14
Views: 6632

Re: Best Prokofiev piano sonatas?

Barbara Nissman is noted to be a Prokofiev specialist. Her original set of complete Prokofiev sonatas was made for Newport Records [60092, 60093]. I'm not sure if these have been reissued on Pierian (her new label) or if Pierians are newly recorded, however, the Newport-issued sonatas are highly pr...
by stefanher
Fri Dec 10, 2010 3:47 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Best Prokofiev piano sonatas?
Replies: 14
Views: 6632

Best Prokofiev piano sonatas?

I have a few recordings of these- Richter in 6-8; Ashkenazy in 7 & 8; & odds & ends with Chiu,Zeltser & Josselson just to mention a few. I was tempted by the Chandos series but the reviews on release were very lukewarm. So before I start serious comparisons are there any "must have" performances out...
by stefanher
Thu Dec 09, 2010 7:13 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Charting The Decline Of Classical Music?
Replies: 14
Views: 1088

Re: Charting The Decline Of Classical Music?

I find certain of the opinions stated on this forum quite disturbing and actually offensive. Good popular music is an art form in its own right- it is however very different from classical music. That is not what is promoted on You-Tube or American Idol or it's even worse UK counterpart X Factor. I ...
by stefanher
Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:40 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: The Most Realistic Sounding Solo Piano Recordings on CD
Replies: 48
Views: 3345

Re: The Most Realistic Sounding Solo Piano Recordings on CD

I think the most realistic recordings I've heard not only of the piano but of the SOUND that pianist made in concert were the Phillips series of Arrau recordings from the sonatas onward. They never in my experience actually got Brendel's sounds perfectly right.
by stefanher
Tue Dec 07, 2010 3:56 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Santiago Rodriguez
Replies: 9
Views: 1648

Re: Santiago Rodriguez

I have 2 or 3 records of his solo Rachmaninov traversal- I felt he has a big technique but not the imagination of the very best. His liner notes are fantastic however- it allowed me to finally get to grips with the 2nd sonata.
by stefanher
Tue Dec 07, 2010 3:49 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Messiah-1959-Ormandy's Abridged Version-Up Or Down Vote?
Replies: 16
Views: 2723

Re: Messiah-1959-Ormandy's Abridged Version-Up Or Down Vote?

I hope there are no "authentic instrument" or "period performance" fanatics reading this thread.... I have the Bernstein which has the incomparable Russell Oberlin singing the alto roles. Despite the fact that male altos are much commoner now I still haven't heard anyone with a better voice.
by stefanher
Sat Dec 04, 2010 8:04 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Musical Suicides
Replies: 32
Views: 5948

Re: Musical Suicides

Terence Judd, 1957-1979. Pianist...and a fine one. Judd's official verdict was death by misadventure & the family have always strongly denied that he had any suicidal tendencies. Whatever the cause of death he did die tragically young. I was unaware of the "official verdict" (I assume "misadventure...
by stefanher
Sat Dec 04, 2010 7:58 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Pletnev: Charges Dropped
Replies: 6
Views: 1082

Re: Pletnev: Charges Dropped

I don't think it's necessarily all doom & gloom. Robert King seems to be doing very nicely now...Will Hyperion have the nerve to continue his Monteveri series????
by stefanher
Fri Dec 03, 2010 8:22 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Rubinstein cconcerto recordings
Replies: 2
Views: 751

Rubinstein cconcerto recordings

Having listened spellbound to Rubinstein's Ravel's Valses last night I realise I have to find room for at least his Beethoven & Brahms concerti. I already have ther Chopin & Saint-Saens . However he seems to have recorded these several times- so which is the "best" of these & also the best Tcha Firs...
by stefanher
Fri Dec 03, 2010 4:57 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Musical Suicides
Replies: 32
Views: 5948

Re: Musical Suicides

dirkronk wrote:Terence Judd, 1957-1979. Pianist...and a fine one.

Judd's official verdict was death by misadventure & the family have always strongly denied that he had any suicidal tendencies. Whatever the cause of death he did die tragically young.
by stefanher
Tue Nov 30, 2010 6:58 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Why did Angela Gheorghiu become popular in the first place?
Replies: 26
Views: 3469

Re: Why did Angela Gheorghiu become popular in the first place?

How can anyone apart from The Penguin Guide ever complain about this great couple's Trovatore brilliantly supported by Hampson?......not. I'm not surprised EMI could barely give it away. Sometimes death is not a tragedy- what singers like Milanov, Callas & Tebaldi would have made of an overblown sem...
by stefanher
Tue Nov 30, 2010 3:56 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Samuel Barber - Piano Music
Replies: 9
Views: 1304

Re: Samuel Barber - Piano Music

I did a detailed comparison of all my recordings of the Barber Sonata some time back including Hamelin's, Horowitz's & Browning's. Horowitz is so much the better it's not true. Hamelin has recorded the Concord twice but did not for me outdo the Szidon recording. (whatever happened to him?). I think ...
by stefanher
Sat Nov 20, 2010 6:05 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Strauss: Four Last Songs: Recommendations Please!
Replies: 32
Views: 4251

Re: Strauss: Four Last Songs: Recommendations Please!

Only 2 need to be mentioned- Schwarzkopf (either recording) & Della Casa. All else is superfluous. Now I can sit back & await the flak I'm going to get for saying what everybody else knows but was afraid to state...
by stefanher
Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:03 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Opinions sought on Budapest String Quartet Beethoven cycle.
Replies: 20
Views: 4978

Re: Opinions sought on Budapest String Quartet Beethoven cycle.

If this is the Columbia/CBS recordings buy it now. No excuses for not having this even if it cost 200 euros. The only reason not to buy it is if you the live hall of congress recordings already.

Must say I couldn't find it listed on Amazon UK.
by stefanher
Thu Nov 18, 2010 6:56 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Classical music review magazines
Replies: 41
Views: 3056

Re: Classical music review magazines

Classic FM, which is Gramophone's lesser, glitzier sibling, is starting to offer full length compositions for the first time in November. An Igor Oistrakh and Rafael Fruhbeck de Burgos and the Brahms Violin Concerto CD is attached...That is a 1990 Collins deleted CD and worth the purchase of the ma...
by stefanher
Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:35 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Classical music review magazines
Replies: 41
Views: 3056

Classical music review magazines

As far as I know the main English ones are Gramophone, BBC Music & IRR (International Record Review). The USA has Fanfare & American Record Guide. Question- What is the general opinion of these? Obviously the UK magazines are often but not always kinder to British artists. Personal feelings: I no lo...
by stefanher
Mon Nov 15, 2010 10:28 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Chopin NIFC recordings
Replies: 8
Views: 923

Chopin NIFC recordings

My shells are groaning under the number of recordings of Chopin I have although I suppose compared to some people on the forum my collection is modest. These recordings all by pianists I have never heard bar Demidenko are on an original piano & were according to Gramophone "a revelation" which sums ...
by stefanher
Fri Nov 12, 2010 10:54 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: William Tell-It's More Than An Overture !
Replies: 14
Views: 2948

Re: William Tell-It's More Than An Overture !

Have to confess that I prefer Gedda- but of course his version is in French.
by stefanher
Fri Nov 12, 2010 7:09 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: The songs of Charles Ives
Replies: 6
Views: 825

Re: The songs of Charles Ives

The Concord Sonata is as easy an approachable as Joyce´s Finnegan´s Wake :shock: A very good analogy. I spent over 2 years studying the work & listening to as many interpretations as I could. Why? Because something told me it was a great piece of music & worth persevering with. And it certainly was...
by stefanher
Thu Nov 11, 2010 9:02 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Best MAIL ORDER firm
Replies: 18
Views: 3943

Re: Best MAIL ORDER firm

I usually use MDT in the UK. Yes they use cardboard boxes but they are very sturdy.

Having said that can somebody tell me another way to mail CD's except in cardboard boxes?
by stefanher
Thu Nov 11, 2010 3:41 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: William Tell-It's More Than An Overture !
Replies: 14
Views: 2948

Re: William Tell-It's More Than An Overture !

I have excerpts from it with Martinelli as well as all the complete versions & this shows the sort of tenor you actually need in the Arnold role. If there is somebody like that out there he's doing a good job of remaining anonymous.
by stefanher
Thu Nov 11, 2010 3:38 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: The songs of Charles Ives
Replies: 6
Views: 825

Re: The songs of Charles Ives

I think of Charles Ives as a 20th century genius worthy of being mentioned in the same breath as James Joyce- his works are very difficult at times to comprehend but the satisfaction of getting there in the end is always worth it. The songs I know including some of the above recordings are however l...
by stefanher
Tue Nov 09, 2010 3:38 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Wonders never cease! [Samson François, piano]
Replies: 8
Views: 1543

Re: Wonders never cease! [Samson François, piano]

I don't think I've heard Francois in anything & he gets very short shrift from UK critics. He's often portrayed as a showman who wanted to be Cziffra but wasn't as flamboyant. Has he been misrepresented?
by stefanher
Wed Nov 03, 2010 3:54 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Prokofiev string quartets
Replies: 7
Views: 1959

Prokofiev string quartets

I realised recently I hadn't listened to these since my days at university & found to my amazement that the only recording I have is an ancient one with the Vlach (?) on a budget Phillips. Can anyone recommend recent recording(s) that are worthwhilee? The Pavel Haas looks a must but there are at lea...
by stefanher
Tue Nov 02, 2010 6:03 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Chopin pianists
Replies: 21
Views: 3197

Re: Chopin pianists

I seem to have a serious problem with this. Every new recording I hear & is often given rave reviews may strike me as impressive but nowhere near as good as Rubinstein/Horowitz/Gilels. By "new," do you mean recently made, or just new to you? If the latter, there are lots of not-so-new recordings of...
by stefanher
Mon Nov 01, 2010 11:15 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Chopin pianists
Replies: 21
Views: 3197

Chopin pianists

I seem to have a serious problem with this. Every new recording I hear & is often given rave reviews may strike me as impressive but nowhere near as good as Rubinstein/Horowitz/Gilels. A recent case in point was the pairing of the Chopin sonatas by Hamelin- in view of his supposedly legendary techni...
by stefanher
Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:46 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Help me to further discover the music of John Adams
Replies: 7
Views: 933

Re: Help me to further discover the music of John Adams

I'd agree that the Kremer is probably the best of the violin concerto though I still have to make detailed comparisons with my other recordings. Still not sure whether I like it or not however...
by stefanher
Tue Oct 26, 2010 7:55 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Heifetz 103 CD Box Set
Replies: 33
Views: 8066

Re: Heifetz 103 CD Box Set

I was aware of his Walton, Rozsa & Kornogold recordings although the castelnuovo-Tedesco was new to me. He also recorded the Elgar.

But 103 CD's???
by stefanher
Tue Oct 26, 2010 2:47 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Heifetz 103 CD Box Set
Replies: 33
Views: 8066

Re: Heifetz 103 CD Box Set

103 CD's? This must encompass the entire known violin repertoire & a bit more besides. Knowing that Heifetz never recorded current repertoire standards like the Shostakovich & Dvorak concerti I really wonder what they have found to fill it up.
by stefanher
Mon Oct 18, 2010 4:12 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Vittorio Grigolo: New Tenor in Town
Replies: 9
Views: 1059

Re: Vittorio Grigolo: New Tenor in Town

Frankly he's awful. But nowadays we are so attuned to mediocrity in singing that anything slightly above that gets praised well beyond its due. I remember as a callow youth laughing out loud at the vocal imperfections of the late Callas & Beverly Sills recordings. Listening to them now I'm not sure ...
by stefanher
Mon Oct 11, 2010 6:14 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: So tired of Wagner uproars
Replies: 56
Views: 4270

Re: So tired of Wagner uproars

One could easily devote a few threads to the music of Third Reich composers that have long been suppressed because said composers smooched ass with Adlof & Company. Theodor Berger was one such composer: it's a tragedy his Homeric Symphony 's never received a commercial digital stereo recording. Thi...
by stefanher
Sun Oct 10, 2010 4:41 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: So tired of Wagner uproars
Replies: 56
Views: 4270

Re: So tired of Wagner uproars

If he was so anti-Semitic why did he ask a gentleman called Levi to conduct some of his premieres?
by stefanher
Fri Oct 08, 2010 11:18 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Good for a laugh
Replies: 13
Views: 1844

Re: Good for a laugh

Who would dare these days to conduct the B minor Mass with Klemperer´s tempi?



Well if his recent Mozart is anything to go by Harnoncourt....
by stefanher
Fri Oct 08, 2010 7:12 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Good for a laugh
Replies: 13
Views: 1844

Good for a laugh

I was particularly incensed by a letter from a correspondent in Gramophone this month that described Klemperer's performance of Bach's Mass in B Minor as "good for a laugh" quoting all the research that has taken place since then so we now apparently know exactly what Bach's intentions were. All I k...
by stefanher
Thu Sep 30, 2010 2:45 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Opinions sought on Albert Roussel complete sets.
Replies: 20
Views: 1709

Re: Opinions sought on Albert Roussel complete sets.

I have them both along with the Cluytens which you really should try & seek out. I must state of the two you mention I would certainly go for Deneve- but then I prefer the more human approach he brings to Dutoit who has always struck me as more of an excellent technician.