Walter Gieseking

Biography

Born: November 5, 1895; Lyons, France   Died: October 26, 1956; London, England  
It was with the repertoire of French masters that the German pianist Walter Gieseking became most famous. The impressionistic piano writing of Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel required the most sensitive touch and attention to color and nuance, and Gieseking's finger acuity, imaginative pedaling, and above all, preternaturally alert ear made him an ideal interpreter of this music. Nevertheless, his own repertoire ranged widely across eras and Read more national boundaries.

Largely self-taught as a pianist, Gieseking was born in Lyon, France, on November 5, 1895; with his family (his father was a distinguished doctor and entomologist), he traveled in France and Italy until he enrolled at the Hannover Conservatory, where he came under the tutelage of Karl Leimer, making his debut in 1915.

Gieseking was drafted into the German army a year after his first public performance but escaped combat by performing in his regimental band. After the war, he undertook the the life of a working musician, accompanying singers and instrumentalists, playing in chamber music ensembles, and working as an opera coach. He could hardly avoid the heady artistic atmosphere of postwar Germany, and he became an advocate of new music, playing works by Schoenberg, Busoni, Hindemith, Szymanowski, and Pfitzner, whose Piano Concerto he premiered under Fritz Busch in 1923. Subsequent debuts in London (1923), the United States (1926, Aeolian Hall, New York), and Paris (1928) were highly acclaimed, with audiences and critics responding enthusiastically to Gieseking's subtle shadings and contrapuntal clarity.

The Second World War brought controversy to Gieseking: like many other artists who remained in Germany during hostilities, he was accused of collaborating with the Nazis. His 1949 Carnegie Hall engagements caused such an uproar that they had to be cancelled; but he was eventually cleared of all charges by an Allied court in Germany. His concert career resumed with the success it had formerly enjoyed. To this activity he added a heavy schedule of recording, committing to disc the complete solo piano music of Mozart and the Beethoven concertos, as well as complete sets of Debussy's and Ravel's piano works. At the time of his death in London (October 26, 1956), Gieseking was engaged on a project to record all the Beethoven piano sonatas. His recordings of Debussy and Ravel are regarded as benchmarks for every subsequent performer.

Gieseking's autobiography, So wurde ich Pianist, was published posthumously in 1963; it seems never to have been translated into English. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 59 Available Recordings
1 2 3
  • 1.
    Wilhelm Furtwangler - The Radio Recordings 1939-1945 / Berlin Philharmonic
    Label: Berlin Philharmonic   Catalog: 180181 Release Date: 06/14/2019   Number of Discs: 22
    Composer:  Wilhelm Furtwängler,  George Frideric Handel,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Performer:  Edwin Fischer,  Peter Anders,  Walter Gieseking,  Elisabeth Höngen  ... 
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Bruno Kittel Choir
    Recommendation
    SuperAudio CD: $290.99
    In Stock
    SuperAudio CD:  $290.99 Add to Cart

  • 2.
    Debussy: His First Performers
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 571552 Release Date: 06/08/2018   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Claude Debussy,  Ricardo Vińes,  Alfred Cortot,  Marguerite Long  ... 
    Conductor:  Camille Chevillard,  Walther Straram,  Philippe Gaubert,  Désiré-Emile Inghelbrecht  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Calvet String Quartet,  Lamoureux Concerts Association Orchestra,  Orchestre Des Concerts Straram  ... 
    CD: $33.99
    Back Order
    CD:  $33.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 3.
    Walter Gieseking - His First Concerto Recordings
    Label: Apr   Catalog: 7308 Release Date: 01/05/2018   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    Conductor:  Hans Rosbaud,  Karl Böhm,  Bruno Walter,  Henry Wood
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin State Opera Orchestra,  Saxon State Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $29.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $29.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 4.
    BBC Legends, Vol. 2
    Label: Ica Classics   Catalog: 5141 Release Date: 10/20/2017   Number of Discs: 20
    Composer:  Dmitri Shostakovich,  Eugčne Ysa˙e,  Niccolň Paganini,  Manuel de Falla  ... 
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Igor Oistrakh,  Nathan Milstein,  Ernest Lush  ... 
    Conductor:  Gennadi Rozhdestvensky,  Sir Malcolm Sargent,  Sir Thomas Beecham,  Rudolf Schwarz  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  BBC Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $59.98
    CD: $52.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $59.98   CD:  $52.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 5.
    Piano Masters
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002732802 Release Date: 10/06/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Daniil Trifonov,  Evgeny Kissin,  Krystian Zimerman,  Pierre-Laurent Aimard  ... 
    Conductor:  Seiji Ozawa,  Valery Gergiev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  St. Petersburg Mariinsky Theater Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 6.
    Ravel: The Complete Works for Solo Piano / Gieseking
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 564142 Release Date: 10/06/2017   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $14.99
    Special Order
    CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 7.
    Debussy: The Complete Piano Works / Gieseking
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 563136 Release Date: 08/18/2017   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking,  Geraint Jones
    CD: $14.99
    Special Order
    CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 8.
    Walter Gieseking: Complete Bach Recordings on Deutsche Grammophon
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4797362 Release Date: 08/18/2017   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Robert Schumann
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwängler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $54.49
    In Stock
    CD:  $54.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 9.
    Strauss: Enoch Arder & Piano Arrangements / Gieseking, Oppitz
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 16048 Release Date: 08/04/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking,  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 10.
    Complete 1950s Solo Studio Recordings / Gieseking
    Label: Apr   Catalog: 2009656 Release Date: 07/21/2017   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Schubert,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $34.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $34.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 11.
    Mozart: Piano Works / Gieseking
    Label: Urania Records   Catalog: 336 Release Date: 06/09/2017   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $29.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $29.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 12.
    Karl Bohm: The Early Years
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 561986 Release Date: 06/02/2017   Number of Discs: 19
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Performer:  Jan Dahmen,  Max Zimolong,  Elisabeth Höngen,  Josef Herrmann  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Staatskapelle Dresden,  Dresden State Opera Chorus,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    Recommendation
    On sale! $47.98
    CD: $45.99
    Back Order
    On sale!   $47.98   CD:  $45.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 13.
    Schubert & Schumann: Piano Works / Gieseking
    Label: Urania Records   Catalog: 223 Release Date: 04/29/2016   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Robert Schumann
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $29.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $29.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 14.
    Elisabeth Schwarzkopf: The Complete Recitals 1952-74
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 553028 Release Date: 11/13/2015   Number of Discs: 31
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Richard Strauss,  Traditional  ... 
    Performer:  Edwin Fischer,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Anny Felbermayer,  Josef Metternich  ... 
    Conductor:  John Pritchard,  Otto Ackermann,  Lovro von Matacic,  Josef Krips  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Ambrosian Singers,  Philharmonia Chorus  ... 
    CD: $112.49
    Back Order
    CD:  $112.49 Add CD to Cart

  • 15.
    Walter Gieseking Plays All Piano Sonatas By Beethoven, Vol. 2, No. 16-32 (Less No. 22)
    Label: Andromeda   Catalog: 9124 Release Date: 01/13/2015   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $14.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 16.
    Walter Giesking Plays All Piano Sonatas By Beethoven, Vol. 1, No. 1-15
    Label: Andromeda   Catalog: 9123 Release Date: 01/13/2015   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $14.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $14.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 17.
    Ravel: Bolero Anniversary
    Label: Saifam (Usa)   Catalog: 1030 Release Date: 09/09/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking,  Ginette Neveu,  Jean Neveu,  Marguerite Long
    Conductor:  Maurice Ravel,  Désiré-Emile Inghelbrecht,  Wilhelm Furtwängler
    On sale! $19.99
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    On sale!   $19.99   CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 18.
    Schumann: Piano Works
    Label: Andromeda   Catalog: 9009 Release Date: 06/10/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Robert Schumann
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $12.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $12.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 19.
    Karajan And His Soloists, Vol. 1 (1948-1958)
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 633625 Release Date: 04/08/2014   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Performer:  Dinu Lipatti,  Walter Gieseking,  Dennis Brain,  Bernard Walton  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Lucerne Festival Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    Recommendation
    CD: $49.99
    Special Order
    CD:  $49.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 20.
    The  Complete Homocord Recordings And Other Rarities
    Label: Apr (Appian)   Catalog: 6013 Release Date: 11/12/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Liszt,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking,  Lambros Callimahos,  Gustav Scheck
    CD: $19.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $19.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 21.
    50 Best Romantic Piano Classics
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 333232 Release Date: 02/26/2013   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Franz Liszt,  Frédéric Chopin,  Robert Schumann  ... 
    Performer:  Cécile Ousset,  Leif Ove Andsnes,  John Ogdon,  Garrick Ohlsson  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  Jerzy Maksymiuk,  André Previn,  Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rostal & Schaefer Piano Duo
    CD: $11.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $11.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 22.
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 165022 Release Date: 02/05/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Richard Wagner,  Bedrich Smetana,  Engelbert Humperdinck  ... 
    Performer:  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Elisabeth Grümmer,  Gerald Moore,  Edwin Fischer  ... 
    Conductor:  Walter Susskind,  Heinrich Schmidt,  Herbert von Karajan,  Lovro von Matacic  ... 
    CD: $17.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $17.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 23.
    The Greatest Classical Music Ever!: The Best Classical Music In The Movies Ever!
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 04105 Release Date: 09/18/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Stanley Myers,  James Horner,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Steve Morse,  Manuel Barrueco,  James Horner,  David Abel  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham,  Riccardo Muti,  Iain Sutherland,  Eugene Ormandy  ... 
    CD: $8.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $8.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 24.
    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  ... 
    CD: $13.99
    Low Stock
    CD:  $13.99 Add CD to Cart

  • 25.
    Debussy: Preludes I & Ii / Walter Gieseking
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 6783332 Release Date: 03/26/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    CD: $12.99
    In Stock
    CD:  $12.99 Add CD to Cart

1 2 3