Two original Decca releases of the Vienna Philharmonic in early-Romantic repertoire, freshly compiled and newly remastered.
‘I am an exponent of an old tradition,’ remarked Carl Schuricht. ‘I have nothing against the music of today but I feel it is important to rejuvenate the sense of tradition.’ This he did throughout a distinguished career which included relationships with all the great European orchestras, including a ready understanding with the Vienna Philharmonic. Working with them he was observed by the young Seiji Ozawa who reflected later that ‘his music did not let me feel his age or rather it sounded more vividly than that by any younger conductors’.
Schuricht had a flair for Mendelssohn and conducted the overtures throughout his career, including late recordings with a German radio orchestra but these Decca sessions from June 1954 surpass them for refinement of execution as well as deftness of conception.
Originally coupled with excerpts from ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ on an RCA LP, Pierre Monteux’s recording of incidental music from ‘Rosamunde’ was belatedly repatriated to Decca in the 1970s as part of the label’s familiar ‘World Of’ series. The Ballet Music No. 1 was omitted on previous CD reissues and is now duly restored for this Eloquence release.
The Hebrides (Fingal’s Cave): Overture, Op. 26
Meeresstille und glückliche Fahrt: Overture, Op. 27
Die schöne Melusine: Overture, Op. 32
Ruy Blas: Overture, Op. 95
Rosamunde, D.797 (excerpts)
Incidental music to Helmina von Chézy’s play:
Overture (Die Zauberharfe, D.644)
Entr’acte No. 3 – Andantino
Ballet Music No. 1
Ballet Music No. 2
Recording Producers: Victor Olof (Mendelssohn); Erik Smith (Schubert
Balance Engineers: Cyril Windebank (Mendelssohn); James Brown (Schubert)
Recording Locations: Grosser Saal, Musikverein, Vienna, Austria, 26–27 April 1954 (Mendelssohn); Sofiensaal, Vienna, Austria, 25–28 November 1957 (Schubert)
Remastering Engineer: Craig Thompson (Audio Archiving Company
Original Decca LP Releases: LXT 2961 (Mendelssohn); SPA 225 (Schubert)
‘Schuricht and the Vienna Philharmonic make a first-rate job of the performances, while Decca have left no stone unturned in the accurate and admirable recording of this great orchestra.’ Gramophone (Mendelssohn)
‘This stereo version of Monteux’s enchanting conducting is as attractive as I found its mono predecessor … The conducting and the Vienna Philharmonic’s playing are a continual delight … he conducts the Rosamunde pieces with such real affection.’ Gramophone (Schubert)