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Great Conductors Of The 20th Century - Pierre Monteux


Release Date: 02/11/2003 
Label:  Emi Classics   Catalog #: 75474   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Ludwig van BeethovenRichard WagnerPaul HindemithClaude Debussy,   ... 
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  North German Radio Symphony OrchestraDanish State Radio OrchestraBoston Symphony Orchestra,   ... 
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Mono & Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 27 Mins. 

Low Stock: Currently 3 or fewer in stock. Usually ships in 24 hours, unless stock becomes depleted.  

This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

The Pierre Monteux entry in EMI's Great Conductors of the 20th Century series is hardly an overview of the conductor's incredibly long career; rather it's a sampling of the repertoire he regularly conducted in his last years. The earliest recording dates from 1955, when he was 80; most of the rest comes from the early 1960s, when he was crowding 90. It would be easy to carp at a 2-disc collection that includes no Stravinsky from the man who premiered Petrouchka and Le Sacre, or Brahms, one of Monteux's favorite composers (Monteux's recording of the Second Symphony for Philips is still one of the best). But we should be grateful that EMI hasn't overloaded the set with the French music in which he excelled, although I wish his San Francisco Read more Chausson Symphony had been included. And we should be pleased that the first disc is devoted to representative samples of the German music that he performed exceptionally well.

The Hamburg 1960 Beethoven Second Symphony is the disc's highlight, a vibrant, dynamic performance with an urgent first movement that takes the "allegro con brio" marking seriously, and a nicely flowing, beautifully shaped Larghetto. An irrelevant oddity is how much Monteux's reading of the work resembles that of another venerable conductor who was 85 when he recorded it, Gunter Wand, who benefits from more transparent engineering and a better orchestra (the NWDR, 37 years later). The Prelude and Liebestod from Wagner's Tristan und Isolde is given a graceful performance that's deficient in string tone and slightly lacking in atmosphere. There's also what sounds like tape print-through at the start of the Prelude. Hindemith's Mathis der Maler Symphony, a work Monteux often led, benefits from his obvious affection for the piece and his no-nonsense interpretation, but it suffers from the Danish Orchestra's deficiencies (weak winds and undernourished strings) and engineering that plays havoc with dynamics (solo winds sometimes rival the full orchestra in volume).

Disc 2 opens with Monteux's classic 1955 Boston Symphony recording of Debussy's Nocturnes, still a treat despite engineering that shows its age in a work that requires modern sound to fully project its atmosphere. There are some odd balances here too, as the female chorus in Sirènes is recorded far too close. A lengthy (49-plus minutes) set of excerpts from Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty shows Monteux's proficiency in ballet music. He phrases lovingly but the pace is always lively and the rhythms bouncy. The set closes with The Marseillaise, from a 1962 London rehearsal. [4/1/2003]

--Dan Davis, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
Symphony no 2 in D major, Op. 36 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  North German Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1801-1802; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/01/1960 
Venue:  Music Hall, Hamburg, West Germany 
Length: 31 Minutes 20 Secs. 
2.
Tristan und Isolde: Act 1 Prelude by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  North German Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1858; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/14/1964 
Venue:  Music Hall, Hamburg, West Germany 
Length: 9 Minutes 26 Secs. 
3.
Symphony "Mathis der Maler" by Paul Hindemith
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Danish State Radio Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Date of Recording: 10/11/1962 
Venue:  Live  Danish Radio Concert Hall, Copenhagen 
Length: 25 Minutes 38 Secs. 
4.
Nocturnes (3) for Orchestra by Claude Debussy
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Berkshire Festival Chorus Women
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1897-1899; France 
Date of Recording: 08/15/1955 
Venue:  Symphony Hall, Boston, Massachusetts 
Length: 22 Minutes 44 Secs. 
Language: French 
5.
Tristan und Isolde: Liebestod [Instrumental] by Richard Wagner
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  North German Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1859; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/14/1964 
Venue:  Music Hall, Hamburg, West Germany 
Length: 5 Minutes 54 Secs. 
6.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 1, Prologue - Introduction by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 13 Secs. 
7.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 2, Prologue - Marche by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 39 Secs. 
8.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 4a, Prologue - Pas de Six by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 10 Secs. 
9.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 4f, Prologue - Variation 4, Canari qui chante by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 33 Secs. 
10.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 4g, Prologue - Variation 5, Violente by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 59 Secs. 
11.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 7, Act 1 - Valse by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 34 Secs. 
12.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 16a, Act 2 - Pas d'action by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 5 Minutes 6 Secs. 
13.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 16b, Act 1 - Aurora's Variation by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 17 Secs. 
14.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 16c, Act 2 - Coda by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 25 Secs. 
15.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 10, Act 1 - Finale, Lilac Fairy's Entry by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 48 Secs. 
16.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 14a, Act 2 - Farandole by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 37 Secs. 
17.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 18, Act 2 - Panorama by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 17 Secs. 
18.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 23, Act 3 - Polonaise by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 14 Secs. 
19.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 24, Act 3 - Pas de quatre by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 4 Secs. 
20.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 24c, Act 3 - Pas de quatre - Variation 2, La fée-argent by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 51 Secs. 
21.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 24e, Act 3 - Pas de quatre - Variation 4, La fée-diamant by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 45 Secs. 
22.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 24f, Act 3 - Pas de quatre - Coda by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 41 Secs. 
23.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 26c, Act 3 - Variation 2, The Bluebird and the Florine Princess by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 0 Minutes 47 Secs. 
24.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 26d, Act 3 - Coda by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 43 Secs. 
25.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 27, Act 3 - Pas de caractère by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 17 Secs. 
26.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: Act 3 - Adagio by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 18 Secs. 
27.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 28e - Coda by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 7 Secs. 
28.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 31, Act 3 - Finale by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 38 Secs. 
29.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 32, Act 3 - Apotheosis by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 06/1957 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 33 Secs. 
30.
Chant de guerre pour l'armée du Rhin "La marseillaise" by Claude-Joseph de Lisle
Conductor:  Pierre Monteux
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1792; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1962 
Venue:  Walthamstow Town Hall, London, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 11 Secs. 
Notes: This selection is a rehearsal recording. 

Sound Samples

Symphony No. 2 in D Op. 36 (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Adagio - Allegro con brio
Symphony No. 2 in D Op. 36 (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Larghetto
Symphony No. 2 in D Op. 36 (2002 Digital Remaster): III. Scherzo (Allegro)
Symphony No. 2 in D Op. 36 (2002 Digital Remaster): IV. Allegro molto
Tristan und Isolde (2002 Digital Remaster): Prelude
Tristan und Isolde (2002 Digital Remaster), ACT 3: Mild und leise (Liebestod)
Symphonie 'Mathis der Maler' (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Engelskonzert (Ruhig bewegt/Ziemlich lebhafte Halbe)
Symphonie 'Mathis der Maler' (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Grablegung (Sehr langsam)
Symphonie 'Mathis der Maler' (2002 Digital Remaster): III. Versuchung des heiligen Antonius - "Ubi eras, bone Jhesu ubi eras, quare non affuisti ut sanare vulnera mea?" (Sehr langsam, frei im Zeitmass/Sehr labhaft)
Nocturnes (2002 Digital Remaster): I. Nuages
Nocturnes (2002 Digital Remaster): II. Fêtes
Nocturnes (2002 Digital Remaster): III. Sirènes (with women's choir)
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster): Introduction
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Prologue: No.1:Marche/N.3:Pas de six
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Prologue: Intrada
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Prologue: Var IV:Canari qui chante
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Prologue: Var V:Violente
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act I: No.6:Valse
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act I, No.8:Pas d'action: Adagio
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act I, No.8:Pas d'action: Variations d'Aurore
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act I: No.9:Finale
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act II: No.13:Farandole:scène
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act II: No.17:Panorama
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III: No.22:Polacca
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.23:Pas de quatre: Intrada
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.23:Pas de quatre: Var.II:La Fée Argent
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.23:Pas de quatre: Var.IV:La Fée-Diamant
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.23:Pas de quatre: Coda
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.25:Pas de quatre: Var.I:L'Oiseau bleu et la princesse
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.25:Pas de quatre: Coda
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III: No.26:Pas de caractère
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.28:Pas de deux:Aurore et Désiré: Adagio
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III, No.28:Pas de deux:Aurore et Désiré: Coda
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III: No.30:Finale
The Sleeping Beauty Op.66 - Excerpts (2002 Digital Remaster), Act III: Apothéose
National Anthems (2002 Digital Remaster): FRANCE: La marseillaise (Rouget de Lisle)

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