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Artists of the Century - Jascha Heifetz - The Supreme

Release Date: 02/08/2000 
Label:  Rca Victor Red Seal Catalog #: 63470   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Johann Sebastian BachJohannes BrahmsPeter Ilyich TchaikovskyMax Bruch,   ... 
Performer:  Jascha HeifetzOsian EllisBrooks Smith
Conductor:  Fritz ReinerSir Malcolm SargentWalter Hendl
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony OrchestraNew Symphony OrchestraRCA Victor Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 34 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

If you’re looking for a basic yet representative Jascha Heifetz compilation, this specially priced two-disc set is just what the doctor ordered. Five of the legendary violinist’s greatest concerto recordings are included, in their best remasterings yet. Put on the Sibelius first. Heifetz owned this work and always will as long as recordings endure. His fiery precision, narrative cool, and stupefying virtuosity have yet to be equalled. Here and elsewhere Heifetz’s burnished sonority pulsates with life, and his intonation budges not one iota from dead center.

The Tchaikovsky and Brahms concertos benefit from the Chicago Symphony’s alert, vibrant ensemble under the direction of Fritz Reiner, the Heifetz of conductors. For all
Read more the violinist’s coiled intensity and rhythmic drive, there is not a mechanical phrase to be gleaned from his seemingly aloof demeanor. Lyrical passages are always lovingly shaped, yet they never sag with indulgence. This is the reason that rhapsodic works like the Glazunov concerto and Bruch Scottish Fantasy emerge as all of a piece via Heifetz’s controlled Romanticism.

In the Bach Chaconne (the 1970 version played on Heifetz’s TV special) some will feel that the violinist’s dynamics and phrasings are better suited to late 19th-century Russian music. Yet he meets Bach’s large-scale conception squarely on its own terms, underscoring the music’s harmonic and polyphonic complexity with thunderous authority. Like all violinists of his generation, Heifetz had a sure way with encore-type bon-bons. His own transcriptions of Gershwin’s Three Preludes make a witty and fitting conclusion to a priceless collection. Don’t be without it!

-- ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

Partita for Violin solo no 2 in D minor, BWV 1004: 5th movement, Chaconne by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1720; Cöthen, Germany 
Concerto for Violin in D major, Op. 77 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Conductor:  Fritz Reiner
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878; Austria 
Concerto for Violin in D major, Op. 35 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Conductor:  Fritz Reiner
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878; Russia 
Scottish Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 46 by Max Bruch
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin), Osian Ellis (Harp)
Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Liverpool, England 
Concerto for Violin in D minor, Op. 47 by Jean Sibelius
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Conductor:  Walter Hendl
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1903-1905; Finland 
Concerto for Violin in A minor, Op. 82 by Alexander Glazunov
Performer:  Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Conductor:  Walter Hendl
Orchestra/Ensemble:  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1904; Russia 
Preludes (3) for Piano by George Gershwin
Performer:  Brooks Smith (Piano), Jascha Heifetz (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1926; USA 
Notes: Arranged: Jascha Heifetz 

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