Bruno Walter's splendid stereo recordings of the last six Mozart symphonies, made in Legion Hall, Hollywood in 1959 with the Columbia Symphony Orchestra, are already available in a box set, and have been praised by me in these pages (CD CD45676, 7/90). Now we are given an alternative choice. The new issue has those same recordings of Symphonies Nos. 35 and 38-41, sounding very good indeed, and offering the •wisdom and humanity, breadth and vitality we expect from Bruno Walter in this composer. But No. 36 in C (Linz) is offered in an earlier 1955 mono version, recorded in New York at the same time as the famous rehearsals for that performance, previously known under the appropriate sobriquet "The birth of a performance" (issuedRead more with the Linz on a two-LP set, 11/71-nla). This new set offers an edited recording of the rehearsals of the first, second and last movements, comprising 76 minutes. Here we discover for ourselves how Walter could slowly and methodically refine phrasing and tailor and sharpen rhythms, producing a genuine Viennese sound from a group of first-class American musicians, The mono recording of the Linz Symphony is of good quality: no apologies need to be made for it. The sound is more studioish than the rest of the series, but well balanced and does not lack resonance.
Bruno Walter's MozartJuly 4, 2012By Michael C. (St. Paul, MN)See All My Reviews"For those of us of a certain age, Bruno Walter's recordings of Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, and Mahler became foundational in our musical lives. These recordings stand the test of time. It is a pleasure to hear Walter's Mozart again and though the recording fidelity isn't up to modern standards, the interpretations more than make up for this. Younger listeners who haven't discovered Bruno Walter are in for a treat. My one complaint - the packaging for shipping was inadequate and the crumby plastic CD container arrived in multiple pieces - not just the ordinary cracked cover that I've become adjusted to, but slivers of plastic. The CDs themselves were not damaged though. I'd recommend that Arkiv look into better packaging!"Report Abuse
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