FRITZ BUSCH AND DRESDEN The unpublished musical legacy, complete for the first time on 3 CDs, 1 DVD and a 190 page booklet.
He was the music director of the Staatskapelle Dresden orchestra for ten years, succeeding the legendary Ernst von Schuch. For ten years he was also the director of the Dresden Opera House, or the "Semperoper" as it is now called. During that time he worked his fingers to the bone and went home only to sleep, something even his political opponents acknowledged. In the decade in which he worked in Dresden, Fritz Busch's achievements were incredible. He virtually "remoulded" the opera company, which was beginning to show its age, he directed important premières, such asRead more the German première of Puccini's last opera Turandot, Hindemith's Cardillac and The Egyptian Helen by Richard Strauss, and he initiated the German and European Verdi renaissance from Dresden. Busch was successful. After the defeat of the First World War, his leadership brought international recognition for the Staatskapelle and the Opera House. But despite all his successes, Busch's "exit" from Dresden came on March 7, 1933, as he himself noted laconically in his diary. He was driven out of the Opera House and stripped of his office before a performance of Rigoletto, in a plot engineered not only by his political opponents but also by the orchestra and the opera company, for whom Busch's radical and uncompromising approach to restructuring the opera company had long been a thorn in the side. The justification given was simple: Busch associated with Jews, had prohibited swastikas from being hung from the Opera House's façade, and was more than critical of the new regime.
Fritz Busch was one of the first well-known artists of international standing to be forced to emigrate because of their political views just a few weeks after the National Socialists came to power.
Today – 75 years after the scandalous events in Dresden – this dark time has finally been reviewed with historical accuracy as part of the EDITION STAATSKAPELLE DRESDEN.
This series, comprising 2 CDs of all the recordings made between 1923 and 1926 and the legendary live broadcast of a Staatskapelle concert from the Berlin Philharmonic Hall in 1931, and one DVD of extensive documentation, many as yet unknown pictures and an early sound film, the overture to Richard Wagner's Tannhäuser, recorded in the old Dresden Opera House in 1932, represents the most comprehensive acoustic documentation of Fritz Busch's achievements in Dresden available anywhere in the world. The sound recordings, which are extremely rare today, have been compiled from around the world, from Germany, to England, to the USA, to Singapore. The accompanying booklet comprises 190 pages and is a sensational bilingual documentation in German and English of the artistic achievements of Fritz Busch in Dresden and the events which led to his dismissal on March 7, 1933. This is an exciting piece of contemporary and music history; a chapter of history which was not spoken about for decades and which has now finally been opened up for everyone.
Throughout, the sweep and authority of Busch's conducting make a strong impression. The filmed Tannhäuser Overture visually manifests Busch's characteristic combination of intensity and solid workmanship, and the documentary films… provide insight concerning Busch, his times, his recordings, and the moral nightmare the Nazis engendered. A must for collectors of historical orchestral recordings.