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Classical Tradition / Beecham

Beecham,Thomas
Release Date: 03/22/2011 
Label:  Emi Classics   Catalog #: 09946  
Composer:  Franz Joseph HaydnWolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Elsie MorisonAlexander YoungMichael LangdonGioconda De Vito
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic OrchestraBeecham Choral SocietyLondon Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 10 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Beecham’s recordings of Haydn and Mozart are incomparable. You may prefer different versions, or different approaches, but for life-affirming, unquenchable vitality and and impeccable stylishness that transcends scholarly notions of performance practice, these interpretations are timeless.

The Mozart recordings date from the late 1930s and early 1940s, making them some of the oldest versions in the catalog, particularly of the Divertimento and earlier symphonies. Although the mono sonics are necessarily limited, these Walter Legge productions certainly permit Beecham’s interpretive touches to come through clearly. Sample the finale of the great G minor Symphony (No. 40)–passionate and driving in the first subject, irresistibly
Read more charming in the second.

In Haydn, Beecham is if anything more distinctive. These performances came later if only because Haydn was never as popular as Mozart, and Beecham’s tireless advocacy was all but unique for the period. The first six London symphonies were captured in good mono, the last six in stereo. The slow movement of the “Clock” Symphony captures the essence of Beecham’s art: the tempo is daringly slow, but characterful phrasing prevents any suggestion of dullness (second sound sample). Indeed, if anything it only increases our perception of the movement’s engaging wit.

The Seasons, in English, begins with a another daringly slow tempo choice for the work’s introduction, this time less convincingly. That misjudgment aside, once the music gets going it’s pretty clear sailing. For example, has the hunting chorus in Autumn ever been sung with similar gusto (third sound sample), even by the period performance folks? I don’t think so. These recordings aren’t just cornerstones of the Beecham discography; they are landmarks in the history of both composers’ discographies, and essential acquisitions for any serious collector.

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

1. Symphony no 93 in D major, H 1 no 93 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1791; London, England 
2. Symphony no 94 in G major, H 1 no 94 "Surprise" by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1791; London, England 
3. Symphony no 95 in C minor, H 1 no 95 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1791; London, England 
4. Symphony no 96 in D major, H 1 no 96 "Miracle" by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1791; London, England 
5. Symphony no 97 in C major, H 1 no 97 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1792; London, England 
6. Symphony no 98 in B flat major, H 1 no 98 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1792; London, England 
7. Symphony no 99 in E flat major, H 1 no 99 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1793; Vienna, Austria 
8. Symphony no 100 in G major, H 1 no 100 "Military" by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1793-1794; London, England 
9. Symphony no 101 in D major, H 1 no 101 "Clock" by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1793-1794; London, England 
10. Symphony no 102 in B flat major, H 1 no 102 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1794; London, England 
11. Symphony no 103 in E flat major, H 1 no 103 "Drumroll" by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1795; London, England 
12. Symphony no 104 in D major, H 1 no 104 "London" by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1795; London, England 
13. The Seasons, H 21 no 3 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Performer:  Elsie Morison (Soprano), Alexander Young (Tenor), Michael Langdon (Bass)
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Beecham Choral Society
Period: Classical 
Written: 1799-1801; Vienna, Austria 
Language: English 
14. Symphony no 29 in A major, K 201 (186a) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Written: 1774 
Date of Recording: 11/30/1937 
15. Symphony no 31 in D major, K 297 (300a) "Paris" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Written: 1778 
Date of Recording: 10/04/1938 
16. Symphony no 34 in C major, K 338 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1780; Salzburg, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1940 
17. Symphony no 35 in D major, K 385 "Haffner" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1782; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1939-40 
18. Symphony no 36 in C major, K 425 "Linz" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1783; Linz, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1939-40 
19. Symphony no 38 in D major, K 504 "Prague" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1786; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1939-40 
20. Symphony no 39 in E flat major, K 543 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1788; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1940 
21. Symphony no 40 in G minor, K 550 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1788; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1937 
22. Symphony no 41 in C major, K 551 "Jupiter" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1788; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 01/19/1934 
23. Concerto for Violin no 3 in G major, K 216 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Gioconda De Vito (Violin)
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1775; Salzburg, Austria 
24. Divertimento for Flute, Oboe, Bassoon, 4 Horns and Strings no 2 in D major, K 131 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1772; Salzburg, Austria 
25. Divertimento for 2 Horns and Strings no 15 in B flat major, K 287 (271H) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1776; Salzburg, Austria 
26. Thamos, King of Egypt, K 345 (336a): Entr'acte no 2 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1776-1779; Salzburg, Austria 

Sound Samples

Symphony No. 93 in D major (1992 Digital Remaster): I. Adagio - Allegro assai
Symphony No. 93 in D major (1992 Digital Remaster): II. Largo cantabile
Symphony No. 93 in D major (1992 Digital Remaster): III. Menuet (Allegro) & Trio
Symphony No. 93 in D major (1992 Digital Remaster): IV. Finale (Presto ma non troppo)
Symphony No. 94 in G, 'Surprise' (1992 Digital Remaster): I. Adagio cantabile - Vivace assai
Symphony No. 94 in G, 'Surprise' (1992 Digital Remaster): II. Andante
Symphony No. 94 in G, 'Surprise' (1992 Digital Remaster): III. Menuetto (Allegro molto) & Trio
Symphony No. 94 in G, 'Surprise' (1992 Digital Remaster): IV. Allegro di molto
Symphony No. 95 in C minor (1992 Digital Remaster): I. Allegro moderato
Symphony No. 95 in C minor (1992 Digital Remaster): II. Andante
Symphony No. 95 in C minor (1992 Digital Remaster): III. Menuetto & Trio
Symphony No. 95 in C minor (1992 Digital Remaster): IV. Finale (Vivace)
Symphony No. 96 in D major, 'Miracle' (1992 Digital Remaster): I. Adagio - Allegro
Symphony No. 96 in D major, 'Miracle' (1992 Digital Remaster): II. Andante
Symphony No. 96 in D major, 'Miracle' (1992 Digital Remaster): III. Menuetto (Allegretto)
Symphony No. 96 in D major, 'Miracle' (1992 Digital Remaster): IV. Finale (Vivace (assai))
Symphony No. 97 in C (1992 Digital Remaster): I. Adagio - Vivace
Symphony No. 97 in C (1992 Digital Remaster): II. Adagio ma non troppo
Symphony No. 97 in C (1992 Digital Remaster): III. Menuetto (Allegretto)
Symphony No. 97 in C (1992 Digital Remaster): IV. Finale (Presto assai)
Symphony No. 98 in B flat major (1992 Digital Remaster): I. Adagio - Allegro
Symphony No. 98 in B flat major (1992 Digital Remaster): II. Adagio
Symphony No. 98 in B flat major (1992 Digital Remaster): III. Menuet (Allegro) and Trio
Symphony No. 98 in B flat major (1992 Digital Remaster): IV. Finale (Presto)

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