Johannes Brahms

Biography

Born: 1833   Died: 1897   Country: Germany   Period: Romantic
The stature of Johannes Brahms among classical composers is well illustrated by his inclusion among the "Three Bs" triumvirate of Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms. Of all the major composers of the late Romantic era, Brahms was the one most attached to the Classical ideal as manifested in the music of Haydn, Mozart, and especially Beethoven; indeed, Hans von Bülow once characterized Brahms' Symphony No. 1 (1855-1876) as "Beethoven's Tenth." As a Read more youth, Brahms was championed by Robert Schumann as music's greatest hope for the future; as a mature composer, Brahms became for conservative musical journalists the most potent symbol of musical tradition, a stalwart against the "degeneration" represented by the music of Wagner and his school. Brahms' symphonies, choral and vocal works, chamber music, and piano pieces are imbued with strong emotional feeling, yet take shape according to a thoroughly considered structural plan.

The son of a double bassist in the Hamburg Philharmonic Society, Brahms demonstrated great promise from the beginning. He began his musical career as a pianist, contributing to the family coffers as a teenager by playing in restaurants, taverns, and even brothels. Though by his early twenties he enjoyed associations with luminaries like violinists Eduard Reményi and Joseph Joachim, the friend and mentor who was most instrumental in advancing his career was Schumann, who all but adopted him and became his most ardent partisan, and their esteem was mutual. Following Schumann's death in 1856, Brahms became the closest confidant and lifelong friend of the composer's widow, pianist and composer Clara Wieck Schumann. After a life of spectacular musical triumphs and failed loves (the composer was involved in several romantic entanglements but never wed), Brahms died of liver cancer on April 3, 1897.

In every genre in which he composed, Brahms produced works that have become staples of the repertory. His most ambitious work, the German Requiem (1863-1867), is the composer's singular reinterpretation of an age-old form. The four symphonies -- lushly scored, grand in scope, and deeply expressive -- are cornerstones of the symphonic literature. Brahms' concertos are, similarly, in a monumental, quasi-symphonic vein: the two piano concertos (1856-1859 and 1881) and the Violin Concerto (1878) call for soloists with both considerable technical skill and stamina. His chamber music is among the most sophisticated and exquisitely crafted of the Romantic era; for but a single example, his works that incorporate the clarinet (e.g., the Trio in A minor, Op. 114 and the two Sonatas, Op. 120), an instrument largely overlooked by his contemporaries, remain unsurpassed. Though the piano sonata never held for Brahms the same appeal it had for Beethoven (Brahms wrote three to Beethoven's 32), he produced a voluminous body of music for the piano. He showed a particular affinity for variations -- notably, on themes of Schumann (1854), Handel (1861), and Paganini (1862-1863) -- and likewise produced a passel of national dances and character pieces such as ballades, intermezzi, and rhapsodies. Collectively, these constitute one of the essential bodies of work in the realm of nineteenth century keyboard music. Read less
Brahms: 4 Ernste Gesange / Goerne, Eschenbach
Release Date: 05/27/2016   Label: Harmonia Mundi  
Catalog: 902174   Number of Discs: 1
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Brahms: String Quartet & Piano Quintet / Kudritskaya, Brodsky Quartet
Release Date: 04/29/2016   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 10892   Number of Discs: 1
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Brahms, Schumann: Lieder / Murray, Martineau
Release Date: 02/10/2015   Label: Linn Records  
Catalog: 443   Number of Discs: 1
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Brahms: Symphonies Nos. 3 & 4 / Griffiths
Release Date: 05/13/2016   Label: Klanglogo  
Catalog: 1514   Number of Discs: 1
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Brahms: String Quartet No 2, Clarinet Quintet / Collins, Brodsky Quartet
Release Date: 03/25/2014   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 10817   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Concerto for Piano no 2 in B flat major, Op. 83

Browse 51-75 of 159 Available Recordings
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  • 51.
    Brahms: Ein Deutsches Requiem; Haydn-variations
    Label: Archipel   Catalog: 154 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
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  • 52.
    Brahms: The Four Symphonies; Piano Concerto No. 2
    Label: Archipel   Catalog: 190 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Schubert,  Bedrich Smetana
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  • 53.
    Great Piano Concertos - Beethoven, Brahms, Schumann, Tchaikovsky / Richter
    Label: Andromeda   Catalog: 5026 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms,  Robert Schumann,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Sviatoslav Richter
    Conductor:  Hermann Abendroth,  Kiril Kondrashin,  Alexander Gauk,  Karel Ancerl
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  USSR State Symphony Orchestra,  Czech Philharmonic Orchestra,  Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 54.
    Otto Klemperer: Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner
    Label: Membran International Gmbh   Catalog: 233373 Release Date: 11/21/2011   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Anton Bruckner,  Recorded Sound,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Géza Anda,  Leon Fleisher
    Conductor:  Otto Klemperer
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  • 55.
    Brahms: Piano Concertos 1 & 2 / Barenboim, Celibidache, Munich PO
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2066688 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Daniel Barenboim
    Conductor:  Sergiu Celibidache
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 56.
    Ultimate Piano Concerto Collection (W/Cdrom) (Box)
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 9098 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 30
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Frédéric Chopin,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Performer:  Derek Han,  Evgeni Kissin,  Karin Lechner,  Klára Würtz  ... 
    Conductor:  Paul Freeman,  Stephen Gunzenhauser,  Dmitri Kitayenko,  Eduardo Marturet  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Israel Chamber Orchestra,  Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $88.99
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  • 57.
    Wilhelm Backhaus Live In Vienna - Brahms: Piano Concertos; Haydn
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 11051 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Joseph Haydn
    Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus
    Conductor:  Carl Schuricht
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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    CD: $34.99
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  • 58.
    Brahms: Piano Concerto No 2 / Gerhard Oppitz, Colin Davis
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 61619 Release Date: 10/11/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Gerhard Oppitz
    Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 59.
    Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 3; Gluck: Alceste Overture; D'albert: Tiefland Overture
    Label: Melodiya   Catalog: 1001107 Release Date: 08/09/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Christoph W. Gluck,  Eugen D'Albert
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  • 60.
    Piano Concertos - Beethoven, Brahms, Chopin, Liszt
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94095 Release Date: 06/28/2011   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms,  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Alfred Brendel,  Karin Lechner,  Paolo Giacometti,  Nelson Freire  ... 
    Conductor:  Willfried Boettcher,  Heinz Wallberg,  Eduardo Marturet,  Arie Van Beek  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Volksoper Orchestra,  Vienna Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 61.
    Brahms & Saint-saens: Piano Concerto No. 2
    Label: Helicon   Catalog: 9644 Release Date: 06/14/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Robert Schumann,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Yefim Bronfman
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
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  • 62.
    Brahms: Piano Concerto No 2, Paganini Variatios / Berezovsky, Liss
    Label: Mirare   Catalog: 132 Release Date: 04/12/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Boris Berezovsky
    Conductor:  Dmitry Liss
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ural State Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 63.
    Icon - Claudio Arrau - Virtuoso Philosopher Of The Piano
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 18432 Release Date: 03/22/2011   Number of Discs: 13
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms,  Carl Maria von Weber,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Claudio Arrau
    Conductor:  Alceo Galliera,  Carlo Maria Giulini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 64.
    Brahms: The Piano Concertos
    Label: Helicon   Catalog: 9636 Release Date: 03/08/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Franz Schubert,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Rudolf Buchbinder
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
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  • 65.
    Brahms: Piano Concerto No 2, Rhapsody, Capriccio; Chopin / Rubinstein, Dohnanyi
    Label: Ica Classics   Catalog: 5003 Release Date: 02/22/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Frédéric Chopin,  Manuel de Falla
    Performer:  Artur Rubinstein
    Conductor:  Christoph von Dohnányi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 66.
    Garrick Ohlsson Plays Chopin, Brahms & Liszt
    Label: Ica Classics   Catalog: 5013 Release Date: 02/22/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Liszt
    Performer:  Garrick Ohlsson
    Conductor:  James Loughran
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
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  • 67.
    Brahms: Piano Concerto, Tragic Overture / Richter, Szeryng, Leinsdorf, Ormandy, Monteux
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 24693 Release Date: 02/17/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Henryk Szeryng,  Sviatoslav Richter
    Conductor:  Pierre Monteux,  Erich Leinsdorf,  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 68.
    Brahms: Piano Concerto No 2; Schumann: Piano Concerto / Cliburn, Reiner, CSO
    Label: Testament   Catalog: 1460 Release Date: 02/08/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Robert Schumann
    Performer:  Van Cliburn
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
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  • 69.
    Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 2; Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 2 / Sanderling, Zak, Leningrad Philharmonic
    Label: Praga   Catalog: 350054 Release Date: 02/08/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Sergei Prokofiev
    Performer:  Yakov Zak
    Conductor:  Kurt Sanderling
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra,  USSR Radio/TV Large Symphony Orchestra
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  • 70.
    Piano & Cello Masterpieces
    Label: Zyx Records   Catalog: 10105 Release Date: 11/19/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Vladimir Horowitz,  Pablo Casals,  Mieczyslaw Horszowski,  Shura Cherkassky
    Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini,  Leopold Ludwig,  Richard Kraus
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  • 71.
    Brahms: Concertos, Symphonies / Haitink, Arrau, Szeryng, Starker [7-CD Collector's Edition]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001479902 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Claudio Arrau,  Henryk Szeryng,  János Starker
    Conductor:  Bernard Haitink
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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  • 72.
    Icon - Edwin Fischer
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 29499 Release Date: 09/14/2010   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Schubert,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Edwin Fischer,  Ronald Smith,  Denis Matthews,  Raymond Clark  ... 
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler,  Edwin Fischer,  Josef Krips,  Lawrence Collingwood  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 73.
    Brahms: Piano Works / Wilhelm Backhaus
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 433895 Release Date: 08/12/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus,  Emanuel Brabec
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 74.
    Brahms: Symphony No 4, Piano Concerto No 2 / Fischer-Dieskau, Lifschitz
    Label: Orfeo   Catalog: 810102 Release Date: 07/27/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Konstantin Lifschitz
    Conductor:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Concert House Orchestra
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  • 75.
    Label: Archipel   Catalog: 443 Release Date: 05/25/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Claudio Arrau
    Conductor:  Paul Kletzki,  Igor Markevitch,  Carl Schuricht
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