Ernest Ansermet

Biography

Born: November 11, 1883; Vevey, Switzerland   Died: February 20, 1969; Geneva, Switzerland  
For 50 years he directed an orchestra that was second-rate in tone and technique, yet Ernest Ansermet drew performances from it that cut right to the heart of the music. A musician of catholic taste, Ansermet was a reliable, insightful interpreter of composers from Mozart to Martin. His recordings in the 1950s and 1960s with the Suisse Romande Orchestra, which he founded, retain strong interest for collectors who value nuance over tonal sheen. Read more These recordings are of especial interest as they provide a link to composers active in Paris in the early twentieth century, with whom Ansermet was closely associated.

As a child, he studied math with his father, a teacher, and music with his mother. Ansermet's early training seemed to add up to a career in mathematics; he specialized in that subject at Lausanne University, graduating in 1903. Ansermet served as a professor of mathematics from 1905-1909. But during this time his interest in music only increased; he kept an eye trained on the technique of local conductors, and took courses in music with Alexandre Denéréaz, Otto Barblan, and Ernest Bloch. Ansermet sought further advice on conducting from Felix Mottl in Munich and Artur Nikisch in Berlin, then concentrated mainly on teaching himself the art of the baton.

His first professional efforts were leading the summer Kursaal concerts in Montreux (1912-1914), and conducting symphonic concerts in Geneva (1915-1918). In 1918 he organized the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande in Geneva, from the start performing a substantial amount of contemporary French and Russian music. Ansermet befriended many of the great progressive composers of the time, especially Claude Debussy, Maurice Ravel, and Igor Stravinsky. Through Stravinsky, Ansermet met Serge Diaghilev and was appointed principal conductor of the latter's Ballets Russes, touring with the company to Paris, London, Italy, Spain, South America, and the United States. During a 1916 tour Ansermet made his first recordings with the Ballets Russes orchestra -- the beginning of a half century of making intriguing records with less-than-stellar ensembles. Through his association with the Ballets Russes, Ansermet was able to premiere many of the period's most important dance scores, including Falla's Three-Cornered Hat, Prokofiev's The Buffoon, Satie's Parade, and Stravinsky's Pulcinella. As an extra-curricular wartime diversion, on September 28, 1918, Ansermet premiered Stravinsky's L'Histoire du soldat in Geneva.

He developed the reputation of -- in the words of Nicholas Slonimsky -- "a scholarly and progressive musician capable of fine interpretations of both classical and modern works." Although the Suisse Romande Orchestra, with which he recorded for Decca in the 1950s and 1960s, could be criticized for its wiry strings and sour woodwinds, the group delivered to Ansermet highly accurate performances notable for their clear textures and delicate timbral balances.

Ansermet was, not surprisingly, a gifted conductor of Classical-era music, but he had little opportunity to record it. He is best remembered for his sui generis recordings of the music of his French contemporaries Debussy, Ravel, and Roussel, and his Swiss compatriots Honegger and Martin. But Ansermet was also a strong champion of such other contemporary composers as Bartók and Britten, premiering the latter's opera The Rape of Lucretia. He retired from conducting in 1967, to the end performing and committing to disc such rarities as Magnard's Symphony No. 4.

Ansermet's compositions include a symphonic poem, Feuilles de printemps; he also orchestrated Debussy's Six épigraphes antiques, among other pieces. His publications include Le Geste du chef d'orchestre (1943) and Les Fondements de la musique dans la conscience humaine (1961), in which he used mathematics to discredit 12-tone and other advanced compositional techniques. Read less

There are 102 Ernest Ansermet recordings available.

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Biography

Born: November 11, 1883; Vevey, Switzerland   Died: February 20, 1969; Geneva, Switzerland  
For 50 years he directed an orchestra that was second-rate in tone and technique, yet Ernest Ansermet drew performances from it that cut right to the heart of the music. A musician of catholic taste, Ansermet was a reliable, insightful interpreter of composers from Mozart to Martin. His recordings in the 1950s and 1960s with the Suisse Romande Orchestra, which he founded, retain strong interest for collectors who value nuance over tonal sheen. Read more
WORKS ALBUMS
TITLE/COMPOSER
LABEL
Beethoven: Symphony No.9 in D minor, Op.125 - "Choral" - 1. Allegro ma non troppo, un poco maestoso
Beethoven: Symphony No.9 in D minor, Op.125 - "Choral" - 2. Molto vivace
Beethoven: Symphony No.9 in D minor, Op.125 - "Choral" - 3. Adagio molto e cantabile
Beethoven: Symphony No.9 in D minor, Op.125 - "Choral" - 4. Presto - Allegro assai
I. Allegro non troppo
II. Adagio
III. Allegro giocoso, ma non troppo vivace
I. Allegro non troppo
II. Andante tranquillo
III. Allegro molto
Ravel: Trois Poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé - 1. Soupir
Ravel: Trois Poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé - 2. Placet futile
Ravel: Trois Poèmes de Stéphane Mallarmé - 3. Surgi de la croupe et du bond
Ravel: 2 Mélodies hébraïques - 1. Kaddisch
Ravel: 2 Mélodies hébraïques - 2. L'énigme éternelle
Ravel: Shéhérazade - Sur des Vers de Tristan Klingsor - 1. Asie
Ravel: Shéhérazade - Sur des Vers de Tristan Klingsor - 2. La flûte enchantée
Ravel: Shéhérazade - Sur des Vers de Tristan Klingsor - 3. L'indifférent
Debussy: Le Martyre de Saint Sébastien - Mystère - 1. La Cour des lys
Debussy: Le Martyre de Saint Sébastien - Mystère - 2. La Chambre magique
Debussy: Le Martyre de Saint Sébastien - Mystère - 3. Le Concile des faux dieux
Debussy: Le Martyre de Saint Sébastien - Mystère - 4. Le Laurier blessé
Debussy: Le Martyre de Saint Sébastien - Mystère - 5. Le Paradis
Debussy: La Boîte à joujoux - orchestrated Caplet - Prelude - Premier Tableau
Debussy: La Boîte à joujoux - orchestrated Caplet - Deuxième Tableau - Le Champ de Bataille
Debussy: La Boîte à joujoux - orchestrated Caplet - Troisième Tableau - La Bergerie à vendre
Debussy: La Boîte à joujoux - orchestrated Caplet - Quatrième Tableau - Epilogue
Debussy: Suite bergamasque, L. 75 - 3. Clair de lune
Debussy: Suite bergamasque - Clair de lune
1. From Dawn till Noon on the Sea (De l'aube à midi sur la mer)
2. Play of the Waves (Jeux de vagues)
3. Dialogue of the Wind and the Sea (Dialogue du vent et de la mer)
Stravinsky: Symphony in C - 1. Moderato alla breve - Tempo agitato senza troppo accelerare - Tempo I
Stravinsky: Symphony in C - 2. Larghetto concertante -
Stravinsky: Symphony in C - 3. Allegretto - Meno mosso - Tempo I - Più mosso - Tempo I
Stravinsky: Symphony in C - 4. Largo - Tempo giusto, alla breve - Poco meno mosso
Stravinsky: Symphony in 3 Movements - 1. Allegro
Stravinsky: Symphony in 3 Movements - 2. Andante - Interlude (L'istesso tempo)-
Stravinsky: Symphony in 3 Movements - 3. Con moto
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, Op.35 - The Sea and Sinbad's Ship
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, Op.35 - The Story of the Calender Prince
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, Op.35 - The Young Prince and the Young Princess
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade, Op.35 - Festival at Bagdad - The Sea - The Shipwreck against a rock surmounted by a bronze warrior (The Shipwreck)
Rimsky-Korsakov: Symphony No.2, Op.9 "Antar" - 1. Largo - Allegro giocoso - Adagio - Largo - (Tempo I) - Allegretto Vivace - Largo (Tempo I)
Rimsky-Korsakov: Symphony No.2, Op.9 "Antar" - 2. Allegro - Molto allegro - Meno mosso, allargando - Allegro (Tempo I)
Rimsky-Korsakov: Symphony No.2, Op.9 "Antar" - 3. Allegro risoluto alla marcia
Rimsky-Korsakov: Symphony No.2, Op.9 "Antar" - 4. Allegretto vivace - Andante amoroso - Animato assai - Tempo I
Introduction
9. Final (La Fée des lilas paraît)
Pas d'action
24. Pas de caractère (Puss in Boots)
17. Panorama (Andantino)
6. Valse
Overture
No. 2 March
No. 14c Pas de deux: Variation II (Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy)
No. 12d Character Dances: Trépak (Russian Dance)
No. 12b Character Dances: Coffee (Arabian Dance)
No. 12c Character Dances: Tea (Chinese Dance)
No. 12e Character Dances: Dance of the Reed Pipes
No. 13 Waltz of the Flowers
Haydn: Symphony in E flat, H.I No.22 -"The Philosopher" - 1. Adagio
Haydn: Symphony in E flat, H.I No.22 -"The Philosopher" - 2. Presto
Haydn: Symphony in E flat, H.I No.22 -"The Philosopher" - 3. Menuetto
Haydn: Symphony in E flat, H.I No.22 -"The Philosopher" - 4. Finale (Presto)
Beethoven: Symphony No.4 in B flat, Op.60 - 1. Adagio - Allegro vivace
Beethoven: Symphony No.4 in B flat, Op.60 - 2. Adagio
Beethoven: Symphony No.4 in B flat, Op.60 - 3. Allegro vivace
Beethoven: Symphony No.4 in B flat, Op.60 - 4. Allegro ma non troppo
Borodin: Prince Igor - Dance of the Polovtsian Maidens
Borodin: Prince Igor - Polovtsian Dances
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 1. Sinfonia
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 2. Serenata
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 3a. Scherzino
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 3b. Allegro
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 3c. Andantino
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 4. Tarantella
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 5. Toccata
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 6. Gavotta con due variazioni
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 7. Vivo
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 8a. Minuetto
Stravinsky: Pulcinella (Concert Suite) - 8b. Finale
Sibelius: Symphony No.4 in A minor, Op.63 - 1. Tempo molto moderato, quasi adagio
Sibelius: Symphony No.4 in A minor, Op.63 - 2. Allegro molto vivace
Sibelius: Symphony No.4 in A minor, Op.63 - 3. Il tempo largo
Sibelius: Symphony No.4 in A minor, Op.63 - 4. Allegro
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Préambule
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Pierrot
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Arlequin
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Valse noble
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Eusebius
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Florestan
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Coquette
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Papillons
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - A.S.C.H. - S.C.H.A.
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Chiarina
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Chopin
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Estrella
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Reconnaissance
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Pantalon et Colombine
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Valse Allemande
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Paganini
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Aveu
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Promenade
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Pause
Schumann: Carnaval, Op.9 - Marche des "Davidsbünler" contre les Philistins
Fauré: Masques et Bergamasques - Ouverture
Fauré: Masques et Bergamasques - Menuet
Fauré: Masques et Bergamasques - Gavotte
Fauré: Masques et Bergamasques - Pastorale
Ravel: Le tombeau de Couperin - 1. Prélude
Ravel: Le tombeau de Couperin - 2. Forlane
Ravel: Le tombeau de Couperin - 3. Menuet
Ravel: Le tombeau de Couperin - 4. Rigaudon
Debussy: 6 Épigraphes antiques - Pour invoquer Pan, dieu du vent d'été
Debussy: 6 Épigraphes antiques - Pour un tombeau sans nom
Debussy: 6 Épigraphes antiques, L.131 - Pour que la nuit soit propice
Debussy: 6 Épigraphes antiques - Pour la danseuse aux crotales
Debussy: 6 Épigraphes antiques - Pour l'égyptienne
Debussy: 6 Épigraphes antiques - Pour remercier la pluie au matin
Respighi: Fountains of Rome - The Fountain of Valle Giulia (La fontana di Valle Giulia all'alba)
Respighi: Fountains of Rome - The Triton Fountain (La fontana di Tritone al mattino)
Respighi: Fountains of Rome - The Fountain of Trevi (La fontana di Trevi al meriggio)
Respighi: Fountains of Rome - The Villa Medici Fountain (La fontana di Villa Medici al tramonto)
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Prelude
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - L'Eternel est mon berger
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Loué soit le Seigneur plein de gloire
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Vive David
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Ne crains riens et mets ta foi en l'Eternel
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Ah, si j'avais des ailes de colombe
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - L'homme né de la femme
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Pitié de moi, mon Dieu, pitié
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Interlude (Saul's Camp)....L'Eternel est ma lumière
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - En vain Saul désepéré....Incantation
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 1 - Lament of Gilboa
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 2 - Jérusalem, Jérusalem...Chantez, mes soeurs
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 2 - Et voici les bergers amenant leurs troupeaux
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - De mon coeur jaillit un cantique
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - Bien-aimé, prends ma main
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - Miséricorde, o Dieu, pitié
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - Je fus conçu dans le péché
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - Je lève mes regards vers la montagne
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - O forêt d'Ephraïm
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - March of the Hebrews
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - Je t'aimerai, Seigneur
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - Dans cet effroi, le grand Dieu que j'adore
Honegger: Le Roi David / Part 3 - Ayant promis à Dieu
Rossini: Suite Rossiniana - 1. Caprie Taormina (Barcarola e Siciliana)
Rossini: Suite Rossiniana - 2. Lamento
Rossini: Suite Rossiniana - 3. Intermezzo
Rossini: Suite Rossiniana - 4. Tarantella "Puro sangue"
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été, Op.7 - 1. Villanelle
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été, Op.7 - 2. Le spectre de la rose
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été, Op.7 - 3. Sur les lagunes
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été, Op.7 - 4. Absence
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été, Op.7 - 5. Au cimetière (claire de lune)
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été, Op.7 - 6. L'île inconnue
Ravel: Shéhérazade - Sur des Vers de Tristan Klingsor - 1. Asie
Ravel: Shéhérazade - Sur des Vers de Tristan Klingsor - 2. La flûte enchantée
Ravel: Shéhérazade - Sur des Vers de Tristan Klingsor - 3. L'indifférent
Martin: Violin Concerto - 1. Allegro tranquilo
Martin: Violin Concerto - 2. Andante molto moderato
Martin: Violin Concerto - 3. Presto
Bloch: Voice in the Wilderness, for cello and orchestra (1936) - 1. Moderato
Bloch: Voice in the Wilderness, for cello and orchestra (1936) - 2. Poco lento
Bloch: Voice in the Wilderness, for cello and orchestra (1936) - 3. Moderato
Bloch: Voice in the Wilderness, for cello and orchestra (1936) - 4. Adagio, piacevole
Bloch: Voice in the Wilderness, for cello and orchestra (1936) - 5. Poco agitato (cadenza)
Bloch: Voice in the Wilderness, for cello and orchestra (1936) - 6. Allegro
Debussy: Petite Suite, L.65 - 1. En bateau
Debussy: Petite Suite, L.65 - 2. Cortège
Debussy: Petite Suite, L.65 - 3. Menuet
Debussy: Petite Suite, L.65 - 4. Ballet
1. Allegro non troppo
2. Scherzando (Allegro molto)
3. Intermezzo (Allegretto non troppo)
4. Andante
5. Rondo (Allegro)
"Je ne pourrai plus sortir"
"Pourquoi pleures-tu?"
Je suis perdu aussi
"Voici ce qu'il écrit à son frère"
"Qu'en dites-vous?"
Interlude...Il fait sombre...Hoé! Hisse hoé!
Vous ne savez pas...C'est au bord d'une fontaine
Interlude
"Ah, ah, tout va bien"
"Voyons, donne-moi ta main"
Interlude
"Oui, c'est ici, nous y sommes"
"Mes longs cheveux descendent"
"Je les tiens dans les mains"
"Que faites-vous ici?"
"Prenez garde! Par ici"
"Ah, je respire enfin"
Interlude
"Viens, nous allons nous asseoir ici"
"S'ils s'embrassent, petit père?"
"Où vas-tu?"
"Maintenant que le Père de Pelléas"
"Pelléas part ce soir"
"Ne mettez pas ainsi votre main à la gorge"
Interlude
"Oh! Cette pierre est lourde"
"C'est le dernier soir"
Nous sommes venus ici il y a bien longtemps
"On dirait que ta voix"
"Quel est ce bruit?"
"Ce n'est pas de cette petite blessure"
"Attention, je crois qu'elle s'éveille"
"Mélisande, as-tu pitié de moi?"
Non, non, nous n'avons pas été coupables
"Qu'avez-vous fait?"
"Qu'y a-t-il?"
"Attention... attention!"
Overture - Scene
Introduction - Tarantella
Introduction - Mazurka - Scene
Danse cosaque - Valse brillante
Can-Can - Scene
Introduction - Valse lente
Scene - Nocturne
Galop - Finale
Tableau 1: The Shrovetide Fair
Tableau 2: 's Room
Tableau 3: The Moor's Room
Tableau 4: The Shrovetide Fair
Chant du Rossignol : Poème symphonique (2002 Digital Remaster): Introduction
Chant du Rossignol : Poème symphonique (2002 Digital Remaster): Marche chinoise
Chant du Rossignol : Poème symphonique (2002 Digital Remaster): Chant du rossignol
Chant du Rossignol : Poème symphonique (2002 Digital Remaster): Jeu du rossignol mécanique
Scheherazade - Symphonic Suite Op. 35 (2002 Digital Remaster): I. The Sea and Sinbad's Ship
Scheherazade - Symphonic Suite Op. 35 (2002 Digital Remaster): II. The Sory of the Kalendar Prince
Scheherazade - Symphonic Suite Op. 35 (2002 Digital Remaster): III. The Young Prince and the Young Princess
Scheherazade - Symphonic Suite Op. 35 (2002 Digital Remaster): IV. The Festival at Baghdad - The Sea - The Ship goes to pieces on a Rock summounted by a Bronze Warrior
Concerto for Orchestra Sz116 (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Introduzione (Andante non troppo - Allegro vivace)
Concerto for Orchestra Sz116 (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Gluoco delle coppie (Allegretto scherzando)
Concerto for Orchestra Sz116 (2002 Digital Remaster): III. Elegia (Andante non troppo)
Concerto for Orchestra Sz116 (2002 Digital Remaster): IV. Intermezzo interrotto (Allegretto)
Concerto for Orchestra Sz116 (2002 Digital Remaster): V. Finale (Pesante - Presto)
1. La fête au palais de l'empereur
2. Les deux rossignols
3. Maladie et guerison de l'empereur de Chine
The Shrovetide Fair
In Petrushka's Room
In the Moor's Room
The Shrovetide Fair (evening)
1. Introduction
2. The Harbingers of Spring, Dance of the Adolescents
3. Mock Abduction
4. Spring Rounds
5. Games of the Rival Tribes
6. Procession of the Sage
The Sage
7b. Dance of the Earth
1. Introduction
2. Mystical Circle of the Adolescents
3. Glorification of the Chosen One
4. Evocation of the Ancestors
5. Ritual of the Ancestors
6. Sacrificial Dance (The Chosen One)
1. Ouverture: Allegro moderato
2. Serenata: Larghetto: "Mentre l'erbetta"
3. Scherzino: Allegro
4. Allegro
5. Andantino
6. Allegro
7. Ancora poco meno: "Contento forse vivere"
8. Allegro assai
9. Allegro - alla breve: "Con queste paroline"
"Sento dire no'ncè pace"-"Una te fa la zembrece"
13. Allegro - alla breve
14. Tarantella
15. Andantino: "Se tu m'ami"
16. Allegro
17. Gavotta con due variazioni
18 Vivo
19. Tempo di minuetto: "Pupillette, fiammette d'amore"
20. Allegro assai
1. Birth of Apollo
2. Variation of Apolllo (Apollo and the Muses)
3. Pas d'action (Apollo and the 3 Muses)
4. Variation of Calliope (the Alexandrine)
5. Variation of Polyhymnia
6. Variation of Terpsichore
7. Variation of Apollo
8. Pas de deux (Apollo and Terpsichore)
9. Coda
10. Apotheosis
Lullaby in the storm
A Village Fête
By the Mill
The Lullaby of the Land beyond Time and Place
The Soldier's March
Music to Scene I
Music to Scene II
The Royal March
The Little Concert
Three Dances (Tango-Waltz-Ragtime)
The Devil's Dance
Great Choral
Triumphant March of the Devil
1. Sinfonia
2. Serenata
3a. Scherzino
3b. Allegro
3c. Andantino
4. Tarantella
5. Toccata
6. Gavotta con due variazioni
7. Vivo
8a. Minuetto
8b. Finale
1. Moderato alla breve - Tempo agitato senza troppo accelerare - Tempo I
2. Larghetto concertante -
3. Allegretto - Meno mosso - Tempo I - Più mosso - Tempo I
4. Largo - Tempo giusto, alla breve - Poco meno mosso


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