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Lorin Maazel: The Cleveland Years - Complete Recordings


Release Date: 11/10/2014 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 002217602   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Giuseppe VerdiLudwig van BeethovenHector BerliozMikhail Glinka,   ... 
Performer:  Kenneth RiegelLynn HarrellPascal RogéIvan Davis
Conductor:  Lorin MaazelAntal Doráti
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland OrchestraDetroit Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 19 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

It would of course have been too much to ask Decca to simply release the complete Maazel recordings. They already blew that opportunity by issuing a randomly assembled Vienna box. At least we have this complete edition of Maazel’s Cleveland performances. Since he recorded everything for everyone, multiple times, for reasons which defy rational explanation, it’s good to report that on balance he did much of his best work for Decca in Cleveland. Part of the reason stems from smart repertoire choices, and part stems from the superb condition of the ensemble that George Szell left him. Of course Maazel deserves at least some of the credit too, but podium wizard that he was, it still helps to have a great orchestra at your baton tip. So, here’s Read more the deal:

CDs 1 & 2: Debussy’s La Mer, Nocturnes, Ibéria and Jeux. Ravel’s complete Daphnis et Chloé. These are all excellent performances, well-played and atmospheric. The Daphnis has always been one of the most underrated modern versions, and the Debussy recordings markedly outclass Maazel’s weird Vienna remakes for RCA.

CD 3: Here we have Maazel’s reference version of Respighi’s Feste romane along with his less great Pines of Rome, plus an aptly colorful Rimsky-Korsakov Golden Cockerel Suite. Being the conductor responsible for the reference version of Feste romane is kind of like a singer owning the role of Second Harlot in Handel’s Solomon–it’s an achievement, of sorts, but it looks kind of odd on your resumé.

CD 4: More fine Rimsky (Russian Easter Overture and Capriccio espagnol), and an alternately powerful and frustrating Prokofiev Fifth. Here, in a nutshell, is everything annoying about Maazel. At the end of the first movement exposition, Prokofiev marks the woodwind and violins “animato.” Just about everyone else speeds up a bit here, or adopts a basic tempo that permits an “animato” characterization of the melodic line. Not Maazel. “Tempo 1? Prokofiev has marked some bars previously, and “Tempo 1? is what Maazel delivers, even if it goes against the plain musical sense. Compare Maazel to a typical good alternative–Previn and the L.A. Philharmonic on Philips. It’s a classic case of not seeing the forest for the trees.

CD 5: A standard Glinka Ruslan and Lyudmila Overture coupled to a very virtuosic Scheherazade and a reference Scriabin Poem of Ecstasy–magnificently played (great trumpet solos), transparent, and not so sweaty as to become intolerable.

CDs 6 & 7: Berlioz–a very good Harold in Italy (Maazel always did it well, both here and on his DG remake), coupled to a boring Requiem. The Lacrymosa is particularly droopy. Ignore the booklet timings. The March of the Pilgrims in “Harold” does not take the same time as the first movement.

CD 8: These forces could give fine performances of Bizet’s L’Arlésienne Suites and Jeux d’enfants in their collective sleep. Happily, the remain awake here. The Franck D Minor Symphony is also very good, if a little bit stiff in the outer movements compared to, say, Monteux.

CDs 9 & 10: Prokofiev’s complete Romeo and Juliet ballet, still the reference recording.

CDs 11-14: Gershwin! These razor-sharp recordings include the superb complete Porgy and Bess, and wonderful versions of the Rhapsody in Blue (with Ivan Davis), An American in Paris, and the Cuban Overture. Gershwin has seldom sounded so classy. A perfectly enjoyable Franck Symphonic Variations with Pascal Rogé rounds out the Gershwin orchestral music disc.

CDs 15-17: The complete Brahms symphonies, overtures, and Haydn Variations. These are good performances, but they compete (in Cleveland alone) with Szell and Dohnányi, which are reference editions for many. You won’t be disappointed, probably, but it’s hard to get very excited.

CD 18: Verdi ballet music and overtures by Beethoven, Berlioz, and Verdi again. What’s not to like?

CD 19: Rossini’s Thieving Magpie Overture, Elgar’s Cello Concerto, Tchaikovsky’s Rococo Variations and Pezzo Capriccioso with cellist Lynn Harrell. Great Rossini, but as for the concertos,who cares?

Sonics are, for the most part, very good, and there’s much more worth having in this set than not. The problem, of course, is that the best items are very well known and most collectors already will have them. But if you don’t, and you want EVERYTHING that Maazel did in Cleveland for Decca, here it is. Some of these recordings will surprise you.

-- David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
La forza del destino: Overture by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862/1869; Italy 
2.
Creatures of Prometheus, Op. 43: Overture by Ludwig van Beethoven
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1800-1801; Vienna, Austria 
3.
Le carnaval romain Overture, Op. 9 by Hector Berlioz
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1843-1844; France 
4.
Russlan and Ludmilla: Overture by Mikhail Glinka
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1837-1842; Russia 
5.
Academic Festival Overture in C minor, Op. 80 by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Austria 
6.
La gazza ladra: Overture by Gioachino Rossini
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1817; Italy 
7.
Russian Easter Festival Overture, Op. 36 by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888; Russia 
8.
Cuban Overture by George Gershwin
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1932; USA 
9.
Harold en Italie, Op. 16 by Hector Berlioz
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1834; France 
10.
Grande messe des morts, Op. 5 by Hector Berlioz
Performer:  Kenneth Riegel (Tenor)
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1837; France 
11.
L'arlésienne: Suite no 1 by Georges Bizet
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1872; France 
12.
L'arlésienne: Suite no 2 by Georges Bizet
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: France 
13.
Symphony no 1 in C minor, Op. 68 by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1855-1876; Austria 
14.
Symphony no 2 in D major, Op. 73 by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1877; Austria 
15.
Symphony no 4 in E minor, Op. 98 by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884-1885; Austria 
16.
Tragic Overture, Op. 81 by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1880; Austria 
17.
Variations in B flat major on a theme by Haydn, Op. 56a "St. Anthony" by Johannes Brahms
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1873; Austria 
18.
La mer by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1903-1905; France 
19.
Nocturnes (3) for Orchestra by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1897-1899; France 
20.
Images for Orchestra: no 2, Ibéria by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1905-1908; France 
21.
Jeux by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1912-1913; France 
22.
Concerto for Cello in E minor, Op. 85 by Sir Edward Elgar
Performer:  Lynn Harrell (Cello)
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1919; England 
23.
Symphony in D minor, M 48 by César Franck
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886-1888; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1976 
24.
Symphonic Variations for Piano and Orchestra, M 46 by César Franck
Performer:  Pascal Rogé (Piano)
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1885; France 
Date of Recording: 05/1976 
25.
Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin
Performer:  Ivan Davis (Piano)
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1924; USA 
26.
An American in Paris by George Gershwin
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1928; USA 
27.
Porgy and Bess: Suite by George Gershwin
Conductor:  Antal Doráti
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Detroit Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1936; USA 
28.
Romeo and Juliet, Op. 64 by Sergei Prokofiev
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1935-1936; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 1973 
29.
Symphony no 5 in B flat major, Op. 100 by Sergei Prokofiev
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1944; USSR 
30.
Daphnis et Chloé by Maurice Ravel
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1909-1912; France 
31.
Feste romane by Ottorino Respighi
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1928; Rome, Italy 
32.
Pines of Rome by Ottorino Respighi
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1923-1924; Rome, Italy 
33.
Scheherazade, Op. 35 by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888; Russia 
34.
Golden Cockerel: Suite by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1907; Russia 
35.
Capriccio espagnol, Op. 34 by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887; Russia 
36.
Symphony no 4, Op. 54 "Poem of ecstasy" by Alexander Scriabin
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1905-1908; Russia 
37.
Variations for Cello and Orchestra on a Rococo theme, Op. 33 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Lynn Harrell (Cello)
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1876; Russia 
38.
Pezzo capriccioso for Cello and Orchestra in B minor, Op. 62 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Lynn Harrell (Cello)
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887; Russia 
39.
Otello: Ballet Music by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1887; Italy 
40.
I vespri siciliani: Ballet Music "The Four Seasons" by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1855; Italy 
41.
Don Carlos: Ballet Music by Giuseppe Verdi
Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867/1884; Italy 

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