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Igor Stravinsky

Biography

Born: Jun 17, 1882; Russia   Died: Apr 6, 1971; USA   Period: 20th Century
Igor Stravinsky was one of music's truly epochal innovators; no other composer of the twentieth century exerted such a pervasive influence or dominated his art in the way that Stravinsky did during his seven-decade musical career. Aside from purely technical considerations such as rhythm and harmony, the most important hallmark of Stravinsky's style is, indeed, its changing face. Emerging from the spirit of late Russian nationalism and ending his Read more career with a thorny, individual language steeped in twelve-tone principles, Stravinsky assumed a number of aesthetic guises throughout the course of his development while always retaining a distinctive, essential identity.
Although he was the son of one of the Mariinsky Theater's principal basses and a talented amateur pianist, Stravinsky had no more musical training than that of any other Russian upper-class child. He entered law school, but also began private composition and orchestration studies with Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov. By 1909, the orchestral works Scherzo fantastique and Fireworks had impressed Sergei Diaghilev enough for him to ask Stravinsky to orchestrate, and subsequently compose, ballets for his company. Stravinsky's triad of early ballets -- The Firebird (1909-1910), Petrushka (1910-1911), and most importantly, The Rite of Spring (1911-1913) -- did more to establish his reputation than any of his other works; indeed, the riot which followed the premiere of The Rite is one of the most notorious events in music history.
Stravinsky and his family spent the war years in Switzerland, returning to France in 1920. His jazz-inflected essays of the 1910s and 1920s -- notably, Ragtime (1918) and The Soldier's Tale (1918) -- gave way to one of the composer's most influential aesthetic turns. The neo-Classical tautness of works as diverse as the ballet Pulcinella (1919-1920), the Symphony of Psalms (1930) and, decades later, the opera The Rake's Progress (1948-1951) made a widespread impact and had an especial influence upon the fledgling school of American composers that looked to Stravinsky as its primary model. He had begun touring as a conductor and pianist, generally performing his own works. In the 1930s, he toured the Americas and wrote several pieces fulfilling American commissions, including the Concerto in E flat, "Dumbarton Oaks."
After the deaths of his daughter, his wife, and his mother within a period of less than a year, Stravinsky emmigrated to America, settling in California with his second wife in 1940. His works between 1940 and 1950 show a mixture of styles, but still seem centered on Russian or French traditions. Stravinsky's cultural perspective was changed after Robert Craft became his musical assistant, handling rehearsals for Stravinsky, traveling with him, and later, co-authoring his memoirs. Craft is credited with helping Stravinsky accept 12-tone composition as one of the tools of his trade. Characteristically, though, he made novel use of such principles in his own music, producing works in a highly original vein: Movements (1958-1959) for piano and orchestra, Variations: Aldous Huxley in Memoriam (1963), and the Requiem Canticles (1965-1966) are among the most striking. Craft prepared the musicians for the exemplary series of Columbia Records LPs Stravinsky conducted through the stereo era, covering virtually all his significant works. Despite declining health in his last years, Stravinsky continued to compose until just before his death in April 1971. Read less
Stravinsky: Le Sacre du Printemps (10 Reference Recordings)
Release Date: 05/21/2013   Label: Sony  
Catalog: 546174   Number of Discs: 10
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Stravinsky: Oedipus Rex, Les Noces / Wells, Craft
Release Date: 01/18/2005   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8557499   Number of Discs: 1
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Stravinsky: Three Greek Ballets / Robert Craft, Et Al
Release Date: 05/17/2005   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8557502   Number of Discs: 1
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Stravinsky: Later Ballets / Robert Craft, Et Al
Release Date: 12/11/2007   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8557506   Number of Discs: 1
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Stravinsky: Complete Ballets & Symphonies / Ashkenazy, Chailly, Dutoit [7-CD Collector's Edition]
Release Date: 10/18/2011   Label: Decca  
Catalog: 001605302   Number of Discs: 7
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Work: Pastorale for Violin, Oboe, English Horn, Clarinet and Bassoon

Browse 1-20 of 20 Available Recordings
  • 1.
    Retrospectacular - Bach, Beethoven, Reicha, Villa-lobos, Etc / Dorian Wind Quintet
    Label: Summit Records   Catalog: 513 Release Date: 02/10/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  George Perle,  Lee Hoiby,  Bruce Adolphe,  Billy Childs  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dorian Wind Quintet
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  • 2.
    Stravinsky: Ragtime, Chamber Works / Ashkenazy, European Soloists
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 448177 Release Date: 01/30/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Edward Cervenka,  Dominic Seldis,  Dimitri Ashkenazy,  Raymond Curfs  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  European Soloists Ensemble
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  • 3.
    Label: Little Piper   Catalog: 5637495120 Release Date: 01/14/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Eugčne Bozza,  Ferenc Farkas,  Malcolm Arnold,  Adrien Barthe  ... 
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  • 4.
    Composers In Person
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 17575 Release Date: 11/24/2008   Number of Discs: 22
    Composer:  Béla Bartók,  Ernö von Dohnányi,  Paul Hindemith,  Aram Khachaturian  ... 
    Performer:  Béla Bartók,  Vilma Medgyaszay,  Ferenc Szekeres,  Zoltán Székely  ... 
    Conductor:  Lawrence Collingwood,  Paul Hindemith,  Aram Khachaturian,  Arthur Honegger  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Percurama Percussion Ensemble
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  • 5.
    Stokowski Encores
    Label: London/Decca Weekend Classics   Catalog: 433876 Release Date: 02/06/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Igor Stravinsky,  Claude Debussy,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Czech Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 6.
    Stravinsky: Histoire Du Soldat (Suite), Etc / Craft, Et Al
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557505 Release Date: 01/30/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Gordon Gottlieb,  Michael Powell,  Chris Gekker,  William Blount  ... 
    Conductor:  Robert Craft
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra of St. Luke's members,  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 7.
    Masters Of The Oboe
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000661002 Release Date: 06/13/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Igor Stravinsky,  Francis Poulenc,  Benjamin Britten  ... 
    Performer:  Maurice Bourgue,  Heinz Holliger,  Hans Elhorst,  Ralph Gomberg  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  Sir Neville Marriner,  Herbert von Karajan,  Christoph von Dohnányi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Chamber Players,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ens.  ... 
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  • 8.
    Stravinsky Vol Ii
    Label: Andante   Catalog: 1100 Release Date: 04/08/2003   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Soulima Stravinsky,  Igor Stravinsky,  Gabriel Grandmaison,  Andre Vacellier  ... 
    Conductor:  Igor Stravinsky,  Hans Schmidt-Isserstedt,  Ernest Ansermet
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dumbarton Oaks Festival Orchestra,  Hamburg Chamber Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 9.
    The Essential Igor Stravinsky
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 89910 Release Date: 03/25/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky,  John Stafford Smith
    Performer:  Igor Stravinsky,  Robert Craft,  Adrienne Albert,  Donald Gramm  ... 
    Conductor:  Robert Craft,  Igor Stravinsky,  Michael Tilson Thomas,  Esa-Pekka Salonen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Columbia Symphony Orchestra,  Ithaca College Concert Choir,  Columbia Jazz Band  ... 
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  • 10.
    Natural Escapes
    Label: Koch International Classics   Catalog: 7634 Release Date: 01/21/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Toru Takemitsu,  Stella Sung,  William Grant Still,  Modest Mussorgsky  ... 
    Performer:  Emily Mitchell,  Susan Glaser,  Susan DeWitt Smith,  Alexa Still  ... 
    Conductor:  James Sedares,  James DePreist,  Donald Barra,  Steven Richman  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Auréole,  New Zealand Symphony Orchestra,  Monte Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $12.99
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  • 11.
    J. Strauss, Jr., Stravinsky / Boston SO Chamber Players
    Label: Dg The Originals   Catalog: 463667 Release Date: 07/16/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky,  Johann Strauss Jr.
    Performer:  Rolf Smedvig,  Armando Ghitalla,  Matthew Ruggiero,  Sherman Walt  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Chamber Players
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  • 12.
    Stravinsky: Histoire Du Soldat, Octet / Harmonie Ensemble
    Label: Koch International Classics   Catalog: 7438 Release Date: 10/23/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Mark Peskanov,  Mikhail Svetlov,  Doris Stevenson,  Martin A. Bruns  ... 
    Conductor:  Steven Richman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Harmonie Ensemble
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  • 13.
    Stravinsky: Histoire Du Soldat Suite, Etc / Althammer, Et Al
    Label: Ottavo   Catalog: 50074 Release Date: 08/28/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Ruben Sanderse,  Gerrit Boonstra,  Pepijn Van Doesburg,  Wilma Bierens  ... 
    Conductor:  Walter Althammer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Stravinsky Ensemble
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  • 14.
    Capitol Quartet - Anything Goes
    Label: Summit Records   Catalog: 280 Release Date: 02/27/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Joseph Brackett,  Victor Young,  Leigh Harline,  Cole Porter  ... 
    Performer:  Kenneth R. Foerch,  Anjan G. Shah,  David A. Lewis,  David B. Stambler  ... 
    Conductor:  Sam Pilafian
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Capitol Saxophone Quartet,  Orchestra
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  • 15.
    The Art Of Robert Bloom - Music For Oboe And Strings Vol 2
    Label: Boston Records   Catalog: 1032 Release Date: 01/01/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Domenico Cimarosa,  Igor Stravinsky,  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Wayne Barlow  ... 
    Performer:  Robert Bloom,  Julius Walter Guetter,  Marcel Tabuteau,  Robert McGinnis  ... 
    Conductor:  Keith Wilson,  Leopold Stokowski,  Paul Wolfe
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Norfolk Festival Orchestra,  Sarasota Music Festival Orchestra,  New College String Quartet  ... 
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  • 16.
    The Original Philadelphia Woodwind Quintet - 20th Century
    Label: Boston Records   Catalog: 1062 Release Date: 01/01/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky,  Samuel Barber,  Darius Milhaud,  Carl Nielsen  ... 
    Performer:  Louis Rosenblatt,  Veda Reynolds
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Woodwind Quintet
    CD: $16.99
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  • 17.
    Merit - Stokowski Conducts Music From Russia Vol 3
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 4847 Release Date: 09/26/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Anatole Liadov,  Alexander Scriabin,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
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  • 18.
    Original Jacket Collection - Stravinsky Conducts Stravinsky
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 64136 Release Date: 12/07/1999   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  John Stafford Smith,  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Joseph Szigeti,  Igor Stravinsky,  Loren Driscoll,  John Horton  ... 
    Conductor:  Igor Stravinsky,  Elmer Iseler,  Gregg Smith
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Toronto Festival Singers,  C. B. C. Symphony Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic  ... 
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  • 19.
    Romances For Saxophone / Branford Marsalis
    Label: Cbs Masterworks   Catalog: 42122 Release Date: 10/25/1990   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Michel Colombier,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Claude Debussy,  Igor Stravinsky  ... 
    Performer:  Branford Marsalis
    Conductor:  Andrew Litton
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  Tallis Chamber Choir
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