BEETHOVEN: Fidelio Overture. SCHUBERT: Symphony No. 9 in C "The Great." BERG: Three Scenes from Wozzeck.
Annelies Kupper, soprano; Cologne Radio Symphony Orch/Erich Kleiber, cond.
MEDICI ARTS CD MM027 TT: 76:01
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ELGAR: Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85. (Hans Rosbaud, cond.). DVORAK: Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104 (George Szell, cond.) BEETHOVEN: 12 Variations on "Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen" from Mozart's The Magic Flute (with pianist Franz Holetschek); Pierre Fournier, cellist/Cologne Radio Symphony Orch.
MEDICI ARTS CD MM028 TT: 72:47
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BRUCKNER: Symphony No. 7 in E. WAGNER: Prelude to Act I of Die Meistersinger.
Bavarian Radio Symphony Orch/Otto Klemperer, cond.
MEDICI ARTS CDE MM030 TT: 70:09
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BRUCKNER: Symphony No. 9 in D minor. WAGNER: Siegfried Idyll
New York Philharmonic Symphony Orch/Bruno Walter, cond.
MUSIC & ARTS CD 1212 TT: 67:16
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Here are four intriguing historic issues. Fortunately there are many live and broadcast performances by Erich Kleiber, and to this list we can now add this Cologne Fidelio Overture (January 7, 1956) and the excerpts from Wozzeck, an opera he premiered in 1925 (the Schubert Symphony 9 is already available on Classica D'Oro), the latter from a broadcast November 23, 1953. Cellist Pierre Fournier is well-represented in the CD catalog, which includes his recording of the Elgar concerto with Alfred Wallenstein and the Berlin Philharmonic, and many recordings of the Dvorák including performances conducted by Szell, Scherchen, Kubelik, and Celibicache. This new issue of the Dvorak was recorded November 16, 1962. There is a private issue of Fournier's1954 Decca recording with Kubelik and the Vienna Philharmonic, available from Haydn House. The Elgar recording, made March 7, 1955, is of particular interest as it is one of the limited recordings by Hans Rosbaud. The Beethoven variations on a Mozart theme are an added attraction.

Otto Klemperer's Bruckner Symphony 7 from a Munich broadcast April 12, 1956 is of lesser interest; there are three other live performances collectors might wish to investigate, one each with the North German Radio Symphony (1966), the Bavarian Radio (1956), and the Berlin Philharmonic (1958) plus his 1960 EMI recording with the Philharmonia Orchestra, if you can find it. Bruno Walter devotees will wish to have Music & Arts new release, the first ever, of one of his last appearances with the New York Philharmonic February 10, 1957 (the other concert a week later featured Mahler's Symphony No. 2, also available on M&A). The NYP is a bit shaky in the Wagner, but give their all for the Bruckner. Ray Osnato and Donald Tait did what could be done in the admirable transfer of a recording remarkably dry for Carnegie Hall.

R.E.B. (October 2008)