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Bjorling Rediscovered - Carnegie Hall Recital September 1955


Release Date: 09/09/2003 
Label:  Rca Victor Red Seal Catalog #: 53231   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Ludwig van BeethovenFranz SchubertRichard StraussJohannes Brahms,   ... 
Performer:  Jussi BjörlingFrederick Schauwecker
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Mono 
Length: 1 Hours 20 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

RCA's "Rediscovered" series has given us important, previously unreleased recitals by such major artists as Richter, Horowitz, and Heifetz. Jussi Björling is to singers what those luminaries were to their instruments, among the best of the best. Much of his September 14, 1955 Carnegie Hall recital was issued on LP, and some selections have found their way onto CD. But this is the first issue in any format of the complete recital, encores and all, including some of the tenor's title announcements. Only some of the applause has been excised to keep the disc from spilling over onto a second CD, thus sparing us the annoyance of sitting through whistles and stomps from long-gone strangers, though enough is left to preserve the Read more "live" atmosphere. Nine selections never have been issued before, and producer Jon Samuels has done the requisite detective work to slot them into their proper sequence, no small task since Björling inserted encores at various points of the prepared program, not just at the end.


Björling fans most likely will have the majority of these songs and arias in their collections, many in multiple versions. But if they want the complete 1955 recital--and they should, as should all lovers of great singing--they'll need this welcome disc. The nine new items include arias from Cavalleria rusticana (Addio alla madre), Andrea Chenier (Come un bel di), La Bohème (Che gelida manina), and songs by Grieg, Sibelius, and Sjöberg. Whether this or that selection is the "best" available by Björling is a moot point; those made in the 1930s featured a lighter, ravishing voice, the later ones an instrument with more depth and body. Later often equals more subtle interpretations, as this 1955 Beethoven song "Adelaide" demonstrates, with its sophisticated use of rubato and changes in tonal color that reflect textual nuances, not to mention the added fervor of a singer projecting into Carnegie's vast space.


The Schubert group is highlighted by a tender "Ständchen" and an intense, pull-out-all-the-stops "Die böse Farbe". Björling's gorgeous middle voice and silvery top pay dividends in Mozart's "Il mio tesoro", where he negotiates the coloratura well and makes Don Ottavio less of a wimp than usual. As in any Björling recital, the usual suspects are here, but since he was really "on" that night, they're as thrilling as ever--a "Flower Song" from Carmen both tender and ardent, the ravishing "La Rêve" from Manon, and "Amor di vieta", among others. The latter aria should be heard by benighted individuals who subscribe to the strange notion that Björling was a "cool" singer in the Italian repertoire. The Scandanavian set is another of the many highlights, beautiful songs sung with elegance. And has Stephen Foster's "Jeanie With the Light Brown Hair" ever sounded more lovely? Björling's lightly accented English, wide vocal range, and respect for his material, coloring words as if they were a Schubert song, make it irresistible.


Jon Samuels' transfers easily eclipse all other releases of this material, giving us not only the incomparable sound of Björling's voice, but also a realistic rendering of the important way in which Frederick Schauwecker's piano supports and interacts with that voice, along with a sense of hall ambience rare for monophonic recordings. This disc offers 80 minutes of bliss. Get it. [9/13/2003]
--Dan Davis, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Adelaide, Op. 46 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1794-1795; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 6 Minutes 25 Secs. 
Language: German 
2.
Frühlingsglaube, D 686/Op. 20 no 2 by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1820; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 20 Secs. 
Language: German 
3.
Die Forelle, D 550 by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1817; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 1 Minutes 54 Secs. 
Language: German 
4.
Schwanengesang, D 957: no 4, Ständchen by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1828; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 4 Minutes 18 Secs. 
Language: German 
5.
Die schöne Müllerin, D 795/Op. 25: no 17, Die böse Farbe by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1823; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 33 Secs. 
Language: German 
6.
Lieder (3), Op. 29: no 1, Traum durch die Dämmerung by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Written: 1895 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 0 Secs. 
Language: German 
7.
Lieder (4), Op. 27: no 2, Cäcilie by Richard Strauss
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Germany 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 0 Secs. 
Language: German 
8.
Songs (5), Op. 106: no 1, Ständchen by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: ?1888; Austria 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 1 Minutes 39 Secs. 
Language: German 
9.
Don Giovanni, K 527: Il mio tesoro intanto by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1787; Prague, Czech Republ 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 4 Minutes 0 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
10.
Fedora: Amor ti vieta by Umberto Giordano
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1898; Italy 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 1 Minutes 58 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
11.
Carmen: La fleur que tu m'avais jetée "Flower song" by Georges Bizet
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1873-1874; France 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 44 Secs. 
Language: French 
Notes: Composition written: France (1873 - 1874). 
12.
Manon: Instant charmant...En fermant les yeux "Dream of des Grieux" by Jules Massenet
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1883-1884; France 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 43 Secs. 
Language: French 
13.
Songs (6), Op. 25: no 2, A swan by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Frederick Schauwecker (Piano), Jussi Björling (Tenor)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1876; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 50 Secs. 
Language: Swedish 
14.
Songs (6), Op. 48: no 6, Ein Traum by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1889; Norway 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 15 Secs. 
Language: Swedish 
15.
Songs (6), Op. 36: no 6, The diamond on the March snow by Jean Sibelius
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1899; Finland 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 28 Secs. 
Language: Finnish 
16.
Songs (6), Op. 36: no 5, March snow by Jean Sibelius
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1899; Finland 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 22 Secs. 
Language: Finnish 
17.
Songs (6), Op. 36: no 1, Black roses by Jean Sibelius
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1899; Finland 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 19 Secs. 
Language: Finnish 
18.
Cavalleria Rusticana: Mamma, quel vino è generoso "Addio" by Pietro Mascagni
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1890; Italy 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 50 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
19.
Romanze (2): no 1, Ideale by Francesco Paolo Tosti
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: by 1882 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 17 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
20.
Jeannie with the light brown hair by Stephen Foster
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1854; USA 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 35 Secs. 
Language: English 
21.
Andrea Chénier: Come un bel dì di maggio by Umberto Giordano
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1896; Italy 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 56 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
22.
La Bohème: Che gelida manina by Giacomo Puccini
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1896; Italy 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 4 Minutes 56 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
23.
L'alba separa dalla luce l'ombra by Francesco Paolo Tosti
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1907 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 2 Minutes 30 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
24.
Tosca: E lucevan le stelle by Giacomo Puccini
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1900; Italy 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 2 Secs. 
Language: Italian 
25.
Tonerna by Carl Sjöberg
Performer:  Jussi Björling (Tenor), Frederick Schauwecker (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Date of Recording: 09/24/1955 
Venue:  Live  Carnegie Hall, New York City 
Length: 3 Minutes 18 Secs. 
Language: Swedish 

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