Géza Anda

Biography

Born: November 19, 1921; Budapest, Hungary   Died: June 14, 1976; Zurich, Switzerland  
Since his death in 1976 at the age of 55, Géza Anda's considerable reputation has faded somewhat from view. But in his heyday he was widely regarded as a transcendent pianist, possessed of a natural technique that gave his performances an intimate quality -- even when he was scaling the Himalayan heights of his signature Brahms B flat major concerto. It was with that work that he made his debut in 1939 in Budapest under Willem Read more Mengelberg.

Anda was born in 1921 in Budapest; after studying with Imre Stefaniai and Imre Keeri-Szanto, he became a piano pupil of Ernst von Dohnányi at the Royal Music Academy. A stipend allowed him to travel to Berlin, where he performed Franck's Symphonic Variations under Furtwängler. Anda remained in Berlin during the first years of World War II, but in 1942 he fled to Switzerland, where he encountered the great pianist and teacher Edwin Fischer. Fischer was a proponent of performing the Mozart piano concertos while conducting from the keyboard, and Anda would later adopt this practice, adding bench-led performances of all the concertos (even the early ones) to his repertoire. Anda was among the first to explore the whole range of Mozart's concertos, at a time when only the "greatest hits" were heard in concert halls; his outstanding 1960s recordings of the complete cycle with the Camerata Academica of the Salzburg Mozarteum remain a milestone in the history of recorded music.

Anda's style was noteworthy for its transparency of texture and its singing qualities, which led Furtwängler to dub him a "troubadour" of the piano. His flawless technique allowed him to invest his performances with considerable individuality: his readings of Schumann, for instance, were breathtakingly multidimensional, full of asides and highly appropriate introspective commentary conveyed from within Schumann's notes. He was especially influenced by his artistic partnership with the great Romanian pianist Clara Haskil, with whom he played two-piano repertoire from 1953 to 1958. Her moral commitment to conveying music's essence deepened Anda's own musical insight; his subsequent performances reflected a new harnessing of Anda's strong musical personality to the service of the music's meaning.

Although his repertoire was wide and ranged across core Classical-Romantic territory, it is likely that Anda will be most remembered for his interpretations of the music of his countryman Béla Bartók, whose three piano concertos he recorded in 1959 and 1960. These performances are masterpieces of technical ease and artistic mastery, and remain available in commercial release. A few months before the end of his too-brief life, Anda went into the studio and left a final testament of waltzes by Chopin, interpreted in an astonishing otherworldly manner. Anda allows the rhythmic impulse of Chopin's triple-time to hover almost motionlessly, as if contemplated from a distant and ethereal height. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 83 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Beethoven By Knappertsbusch
    Label: Tahra   Catalog: 762 Release Date: 01/14/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Hans Knappertsbusch
    CD: $19.99
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  • 2.
    Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Franck, Liszt, Schumann,Tschaikowskij, Bartok
    Label: United Classics   Catalog: 2013018 Release Date: 11/19/2013   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  César Franck  ... 
    Performer:  Géza Anda,  Clara Haskil
    Conductor:  Alceo Galliera,  Eduard Van Beinum,  Otto Ackermann
    CD: $27.49
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  • 3.
    Berlin Philharmonic - Centenary Edition
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001923302 Release Date: 10/22/2013   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Hector Berlioz,  Richard Wagner,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Performer:  Géza Anda,  Walter Berry,  Gundula Janowitz,  Hilde Rössl-Majdan  ... 
    Conductor:  Arthur Nikisch,  Alfred Hertz,  Richard Strauss,  Bruno Walter  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Singverein,  Swedish Radio Chorus  ... 
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  • 4.
    Geza Anda Plays Beethoven - Historical Recordings 1956/60
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 94223 Release Date: 09/24/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Hans Rosbaud
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Salzburg Camerata Academica,  Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 5.
    Tchaikovsky: Piano Concerto 1; Brahms: Piano Concerto 2 / Anda
    Label: Ica Classics   Catalog: 5092 Release Date: 02/26/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  Otto Klemperer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 6.
    Mozart 111 [55-CD Set]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001766872 Release Date: 11/13/2012   Number of Discs: 55
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Géza Anda,  Emil Gilels,  Elena Gilels,  Maurizio Pollini  ... 
    Conductor:  Trevor Pinnock,  James Levine,  Herbert von Karajan,  Marc Minkowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Concert,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $175.49
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  • 7.
    Geza Anda Plays Mozart & Ravel
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 94216 Release Date: 08/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Hans Rosbaud,  Ernest Bour
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
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  • 8.
    Label: Zyx Records   Catalog: 10131 Release Date: 05/25/2012   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Robert Schumann
    Performer:  Pablo Casals,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Dinu Lipatti,  Walter Gieseking  ... 
    Conductor:  Piero Coppola,  Leonard Bernstein,  Henry Adolph,  Josef Krips  ... 
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  • 9.
    Label: Archipel   Catalog: ARPCD0339 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Géza Anda,  Clara Haskil
    Conductor:  Alceo Galliera,  Otto Klemperer
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  • 10.
    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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  • 11.
    Liszt - Wild And Crazy
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001565102 Release Date: 06/28/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Liszt
    Performer:  Alice Sara Ott,  Sviatoslav Richter,  Jean-Rodolphe Kars,  Daniel Barenboim  ... 
    Conductor:  Iván Fischer,  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 12.
    Berlioz: Symphony Fantastique; Beethoven, Strauss / Maazel, Anda, Vienna Philharmonic
    Label: Orfeo D'or   Catalog: 821102 Release Date: 02/22/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Hector Berlioz,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 13.
    Chopin: Preludes, Etudes / Geza Anda
    Label: Orfeo   Catalog: 824102 Release Date: 02/22/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Géza Anda
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  • 14.
    Ferenc Fricsay Conducts Bela Bartok
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 21407 Release Date: 02/22/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Béla Bartók
    Performer:  Tibor Varga,  Helmut Krebs,  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Andor Foldes  ... 
    Conductor:  Ferenc Fricsay
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin RIAS Symphony Orchestra,  Berlin RIAS Chamber Chorus
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  • 15.
    111 More Classic Tracks [6-CD Set - Limited Edition]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001483202 Release Date: 11/09/2010   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Georges Bizet,  Dmitri Shostakovich,  Franz Liszt,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  Géza Anda,  Maurice André,  Stefan Askenase,  Martha Argerich  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Abbado,  Karel Ancerl,  Hans Stadlmair,  John Nelson  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Czech Philharmonic Orchestra,  Munich Chamber Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $24.99
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  • 16.
    A Century Of Romantic Chopin
    Label: Marston   Catalog: 54001 Release Date: 08/19/2010   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Moritz Rosenthal,  Alfred Cortot,  Rosita Renard,  Sydney Foster  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli
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    CD: $55.49
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  • 17.
    Early Solo & Chamber Recordings (1927-1947)
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 459003 Release Date: 07/30/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Paul Hindemith,  Richard Wagner,  Claude Debussy,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
    Performer:  Georg Kulenkampff,  Franz Rupp,  Wilhelm Kempff,  Otto A. Graef  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hindemith Trio
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    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 18.
    Geza Anda Spielt Haydn, Schumann, Ravel, Liebermann, Chopin, Brahms
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 94211 Release Date: 04/27/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Robert Schumann,  Rolf Liebermann,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    CD: $29.99
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  • 19.
    Grieg, Schumann: Piano Concerti / Anda, Kubelik, Berlin
    Label: Dg Galleria   Catalog: 415850 Release Date: 02/25/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Edvard Grieg
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 20.
    Mozart: Piano Concertos No 24 & 27 / Geza Anda
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 463264 Release Date: 02/25/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Géza Anda
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Salzburg Mozarteum Camerata Academica
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  • 21.
    Beethoven, Brahms, Bach, Grieg, Etc: Piano Concertos
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 9007 Release Date: 04/28/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Martha Argerich,  Sviatoslav Richter,  Hubert Salwarowski,  Walter Gieseking  ... 
    Conductor:  Kurt Sanderling,  Volker Hartung,  Herbert von Karajan,  Günter Wand  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  USSR Radio/TV Large Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Cologne West German Radio Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $19.99
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  • 22.
    Geza Anda Plays Chopin, Rachmaninov, Schumann, Brahms / Bour, Rosbaud, Et Al
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 94208 Release Date: 03/10/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Robert Schumann,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Ernest Bour,  Hans Rosbaud
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Baden-Baden Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $24.99
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  • 23.
    Mozart: Overture To
    Label: Oehms   Catalog: 578 Release Date: 12/10/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Rita Streich,  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Bernhard Paumgartner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Salzburg Mozarteum Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 24.
    Herbert Von Karajan - Salzburg Festival 1957 - Bruckner, Brahms, Berger, Einem, Honegger, Mozart
    Label: Orfeo D'or   Catalog: 773084 Release Date: 11/25/2008   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Anton Bruckner,  Johannes Brahms,  Theodore Berger,  Gottfried von Einem  ... 
    Performer:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Lisa Della Casa,  Gerty Herzog,  Géza Anda
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $74.49
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  • 25.
    Géza Anda Edition Vol 4 - Bartók
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 23410 Release Date: 11/11/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Béla Bartók
    Performer:  Ludwig Porth,  Sir Georg Solti,  Géza Anda,  Karl Peinkofer  ... 
    Conductor:  Ferenc Fricsay,  Michael Gielen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra,  West German Radio Symphony Orchestra
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