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Holst, Schoenberg, Bartok & Loeffler: Orchestral Works / Stokowski


Release Date: 04/29/2016 
Label:  Urania Records   Catalog #: 158  
Composer:  Gustav HolstArnold SchoenbergCharles Martin LoefflerBéla Bartók
Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Roger Wagner Chorale WomenLos Angeles Philharmonic OrchestraLeopold Stokowski Orchestra
Number of Discs: 2 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

These recordings, originally made by EMI, were previously released in different compilations on CDs that have since gone out of print. (Now that the copyright has expired, don’t be surprised to see future incarnations on various labels.)

Holst’s The Planets is the main item of interest here. EMI’s remastering for CD greatly improved the anemic sound quality of the original LP. Stokowski’s interpretation includes some of his signature “enhancements”, such as the tam-tam crescendo at the conclusion of Mars. The overall performance, bright and energized, impresses greatly, even if it’s let down by the too-brisk tempo for Neptune. The Los Angeles Philharmonic musicians play enthusiastically for their conductor.

The
Read more Leopold Stokowski Stadium Symphony Orchestra performs the remainder of the program, which features a surprisingly drab (especially for this conductor) rendition of Bartók’s Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta. The first movement fails to build any real tension, while the plodding finale is devoid of the rhythmic energy so vital in this music. The Turina and Loeffler works offer the famed Stokowski energy and vivid orchestral color. The same goes for Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht, with the conductor and his Stadium Symphony strings offering a passionate performance.

You can still get some of the original EMI CDs from third parties via Amazon, though it might be a challenge to find every item in this collection. Urania makes it easy to acquire them all in one purchase.

– ClassicsToday (Victor Carr, Jr.) Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
The Planets, Op. 32/H 125 by Gustav Holst
Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Roger Wagner Chorale Women,  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1914-1916; England 
Date of Recording: 09/1956 
Venue:  Samuel Goldwyn Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 46 Minutes 38 Secs. 
2.
Verklärte Nacht for String Orchestra, Op. 4 by Arnold Schoenberg
Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leopold Stokowski Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1899/1943; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 08/1957 
Venue:  Samuel Goldwyn Studios, Hollywood, CA 
Length: 28 Minutes 25 Secs. 
3.
A Pagan Poem, Op. 14 by Charles Martin Loeffler
Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leopold Stokowski Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1906; USA 
4.
Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, Sz 106 by Béla Bartók
Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leopold Stokowski Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1936; Budapest, Hungary 

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