Remember ORION Master Recordings?

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Lance
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Remember ORION Master Recordings?

Post by Lance » Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:06 pm

The Orion company issued some fine recordings in their day. A Canadian-based company, you could find repertoire on their LPs that you could not find anywhere else. Among the LP treasures I had on Orion was the keyboard sonatas of Bonifacio Asioli (1769-1832) performed on a 1785 Broadwood grand piano by Vladimir Pleshakov. I'm happy to say the disc has been reissued on CD now by Marquis Classics, the Canadian label that acquired Orion's master tapes, and apparently the Orion name as well. The Asioli sonatas are available on Marquis/Orion 83116 72:56, ADD]. The disc is filled out with music performed by Kathryn Deguire on the Sienna pianoforte, an instrument's sound I came to love through recordings made by Charles Rosen, and recordings that I recall were on Counterpoint-Esoteric LP records.

The Asioli sonatas are a real joy for the ear. The Presto of his Sonata in G Major, Op. 8/1 will have you wanting for more! The background noise sounds as though this disc may have been remastered from an LP ... one hears that kind of LP rumble, especially in the more quiet passages, such as the Adagio of the above-mentioned sonata.

Giveon Cornfield was the producer of the original disc as he was of most or all of the Orion original recordings. It may be interesting for CMGers to know that I have had communication with him about one of the artists he recorded, pianist Marie-Aimée Varro. Mr. Cornfield is also registered on our site.
Lance G. Hill
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When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

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Wallingford
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Post by Wallingford » Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:46 pm

You could order from them personally, too--in the early 80s, 7 bucks took care of the disc, postage, everything! SHipped less than a week with money orders.
If I could tell my mom and dad
That the things we never had
Never mattered we were always ok
Getting ready for Christmas day
--Paul Simon

Jppiano
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Marie-Aimee Varro

Post by Jppiano » Thu Jun 21, 2007 10:25 am

I always thought that she was a very fine pianist, and quite underrated. I wonder if the master tapes are available for possible reissue....

Joe P.

Lance
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Re: Marie-Aimee Varro

Post by Lance » Thu Jun 21, 2007 10:33 am

Jppiano wrote:I always thought that she was a very fine pianist, and quite underrated. I wonder if the master tapes are available for possible reissue....

Joe P.
Hi Joe:

I have been in touch with Giveon Cornfield about Varro, and also have been in touch with someone in Vancouver who was kind enough to send me an actual recital live recital on CD. Varro's husband often made recordings of her but sometimes the quality of the recording left a lot to be desired. I have a number of Varro's LPs. It would be wonderful to have at least a two-CD commemorative set in her honor. I believe Varro's husband is also deceased. Any information I get I will forward on to you. I would personally like to see her art preserved.
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

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Jppiano
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Varro Live

Post by Jppiano » Thu Jun 21, 2007 10:40 am

Hey, Lance

Thanks for the info. You know that live recital would interest me A LOT!

Joe P.

montreal
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Re: Remember ORION Master Recordings?

Post by montreal » Sun Jun 30, 2019 4:39 pm

Lance wrote: I have been in touch with Giveon Cornfield about Varro, and also have been in touch with someone in Vancouver who was kind enough to send me an actual live recital on CD.
Fast forward from 2007 to 2019.

If the live recital recording being referred to above is in fact titled "Marie Aimée Varro In Concert At Bishop's University" (1971 limited mono edition of 250 vinyl disks) then I am happy to announce that the original master stereo analog recording tape was recently played for the first time in 48 years and successfully transferred to a 24 bit 192 kHz digital format.

The quality of the vintage 15 ips quarter track stereo tape is remarkable, with no dropouts and a few easily correctable clicks originally generated by the vacuum tubes of the Teac semi-professional recording machine.

I was the recording engineer (21 years old at the time) and in order to fit the sonic range of the concert into the limited 55 db capacity of the Scotch 203 brand recording tape, I had to constantly alter the gain controls while she was playing. This had the effect of compressing the dynamic range drastically.

Today, a talented pianist at the controls of the digital playback equipment might be able to reverse-engineer my neutering of her original energy.

It appears that all the actors of this 1971 production, save me, are dead, as well as the key players at Orion Records who were not involved at the time with this live recording.

I do not know at this moment who has any intellectual property rights regarding the original analog tape and the new digital copy.

Regardless, I promised myself long ago that one day technology would arrive to bring the tape back to life, not just in mono, but in the original stereo version that adds a whole new flavor and dimension to the sonic treat of this concert.

That this event is now happening just under two years short of the 50th anniversary of the concert has made my long wait more than worth while.

What the next move will be by me may depend a lot about what kind of excitement this new post will be churn up amongst members of CMG.

maestrob
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Re: Remember ORION Master Recordings?

Post by maestrob » Mon Jul 01, 2019 10:09 am

Hello, montreal, nice to have you aboard. You've piqued my curiosity with your post, and I for one would be interested if you eventually issue a CD of this recital. 8)

Do keep us posted.

montreal
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Re: Remember ORION Master Recordings?

Post by montreal » Mon Jul 01, 2019 1:41 pm

Hello, montreal, nice to have you aboard. You've piqued my curiosity with your post, and I for one would be interested if you eventually issue a CD of this recital. 8)
Hi maestrob and thanks for the welcome.

A CD in the original stereo would certainly be an improvement over the vinyl version in mono, but why stop there, when there are services like HDTracks capable of delivering in 24 bit 96 kHz or higher.

Would listeners be comfortable with the idea of downloading a 2.5 G.B. size file in order to get the Hi Rez version?

What would be a reasonable price to pay for a CD if the profits would be going to a music student scholarship fund?

Apart from removing the dozen odd background clicks, should some effort be devoted to recreating the original audio volume levels?

What additional improvements would be welcomed in a typical restoration process?


Hoping to get some answers….

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