Karl Münchinger

Biography

Born: May 29, 1915; Stuttgart, Germany   Died: March 12, 1990; Stuttgart, Germany  
Karl Münchinger was one of those rare conductors whose careers are largely tied to their native city, in his case, Stuttgart. He was also closely identified with Bach, having conducted and recorded many of the Baroque master's compositions, generally with high critical praise. Münchinger also conducted much music from the Classical and Romantic periods and, to a lesser extent, from the twentieth century. The majority of his numerous Read more recordings were made for the Decca label. Münchinger showed musical talent as a child and later began studies at the Hochschule für Musik in Stuttgart. He then studied conducting at the Leipzig Conservatory under Hermann Abendroth. After graduation, he returned to Stuttgart and freelanced as a conductor while primarily supporting himself as an organist and choir director. In 1941, he accepted the post of conductor of the Hanover Symphony Orchestra. This would be the only major appointment in his career outside of his native Stuttgart. He held no post from 1943 until the end of the war. In summer 1945, he founded the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, the ensemble he became identified with in much the way Karajan would be with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. He quickly built the orchestra up from modest resources in the postwar era, so that by the late-'40s, they were making their first important tours abroad. Münchinger and the SCO debuted in Paris in 1949, representing the first German ensemble to appear there since the prewar era. That same year, they made successful tours of England and Spain. In 1952, they toured Central and South America. The conductor himself made his American debut in 1953 (San Francisco) and took the SCO back to the U.S. the following year for a successful concert tour there. He would return with his ensemble in 1977, once more receiving generally favorable response from both critics and the public. By the mid-'50s, Münchinger had established a reputation as one of the finest Bach interpreters in Europe. His admirers will assert that he was instrumental in restoring Baroque traditions to Bach interpretation, filtering out errant Romantic elements that had crept in over the years. Also by this time, Münchinger and the SCO were receiving invitations from throughout Europe, Russia, and Japan, and appeared in these various locales over the next couple of decades, scoring particular triumphs at the yearly festivals in Edinburgh, Salzburg, Prague (Prague Spring), and Colmar. In the recording studio, Münchinger was scoring triumphs a well: in 1964, he led the SCO in a recording of Bach's St. Matthew Passion with soloists Peter Pears, Hermann Prey, and Elly Ameling for the Decca label, that was awarded a Grand Prix du Disque. He made numerous other notable recordings of choral works by Bach, as well as the Brandenburg Concertos; symphonies by Beethoven and Mozart; and even music by twentieth century Swiss composer Frank Martin. Münchinger founded the Klassiches Philharmonie Stuttgart in 1966, an offshoot ensemble of the SCO, expanding the membership to 45 musicians in order to accommodate performing larger compositions. Münchinger and the SCO continued a fairly heavy performance and recording schedule in the 1970s and '80s, with many tours abroad. In 1977, they became the first German ensemble to visit the People's Republic of China. Münchinger retired in 1988 and died two years later. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 103 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    100 Hits: Classical Greats
    Label: 100 Hits   Catalog: 1017490 Release Date: 02/25/2014   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Myra Hess,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  Geraint Jones,  Karl Münchinger,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Myra Hess  ... 
    Conductor:  Geraint Jones,  Karl Münchinger,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Leopold Stokowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  I Musici,  Members of the Vienna Octet (Members)
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  • 2.
    Classical Music For Dogs
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001916602 Release Date: 11/25/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johann Pachelbel,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  András Schiff,  Wilhelm Kempff,  Marisa Robles  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Richter,  Karl Münchinger,  Sir G. Solti,  David Zinman  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  I Musici
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  • 3.
    Decca Sound - The Analogue Years
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001934702 Release Date: 11/19/2013   Number of Discs: 54
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Anton Bruckner,  Arnold Schoenberg,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Pascal Rogé,  Dame Joan Sutherland,  Marilyn Horne,  Luciano Pavarotti  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Sir Georg Solti,  Bernard Haitink,  Horst Stein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 4.
    Wilhelm Kempff - The Concerto Recordings
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001822502 Release Date: 04/16/2013   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Robert Schumann,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Wilhelm Kempff
    Conductor:  Ferdinand Leitner,  Paul Van Kempen,  Bernhard Klee,  Rafael Kubelik  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra,  Bamberg Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 5.
    Bach: Cantatas 51, 202, 10, 80, 140 / Ameling, Watts, Munchinger
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4804844 Release Date: 07/03/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Gösta Winbergh,  Gabriele Fontana,  Tom Krause,  Julia Hamari
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  Hymnuschor
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  • 6.
    The Decca Sound - Highlights [5-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001620002 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini,  Béla Bartók,  Benjamin Britten,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Performer:  Montserrat Caballé,  Luciano Pavarotti,  Dame Joan Sutherland,  Renata Tebaldi  ... 
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta,  Franco Capuana,  István Kertész,  Benjamin Britten  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  John Alldis Choir,  Wandsworth School Boys' Choir  ... 
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  • 7.
    The Decca Sound [50-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001619902 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Manuel de Falla,  Claude Debussy,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Enrique Granados  ... 
    Performer:  Teresa Berganza,  Alfredo Campoli,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Cecilia Bartoli  ... 
    Conductor:  Ernest Ansermet,  Ataulfo Argenta,  Anatole Fistoulari,  Vladimir Ashkenazy  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 8.
    Bach: St. Matthew Passion / Wunderlich, Pears, Prey, Munchinger
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4805015 Release Date: 05/31/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Hermann Prey,  Elly Ameling,  Marga Höffgen,  Heinz Wunderlich  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Hymnus Boys Choir,  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 9.
    Bach: Great Choral Works / Munchinger, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
    Label: Newton Classics   Catalog: 8802001 Release Date: 07/27/2010   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Tom Krause,  Elly Ameling,  Helen Watts,  Yvonne Minton  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Singakademie,  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  Stuttgart Hymnus Choir  ... 
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  • 10.
    Mozart: Piano Concertos No 21 & 20 / Vered, Katchen, Foster, Munchinger
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 425506 Release Date: 06/28/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Ilana Vered,  Julius Katchen
    Conductor:  Lawrence Foster,  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 11.
    Peter Pears - An Anniversary Tribute
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001437802 Release Date: 06/22/2010   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  John Ireland,  Richard Rodney Bennett,  Frank Bridge,  Alan Bush  ... 
    Performer:  Benjamin Britten,  Peter Pears,  Joan Dickson,  Viola Tunnard  ... 
    Conductor:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Sir Colin Davis,  Benjamin Britten,  Eugen Jochum  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Zorian Quartet,  London Sinfonietta,  Goldsborough Orchestra  ... 
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  • 12.
    J.C. Bach: Six Sinfonias Op. 18 / Munchinger
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 433730 Release Date: 04/08/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Christian Bach
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 13.
    Mozart, Cimarosa: Flute Concertos / Bennett, Nicolet
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 421630 Release Date: 04/08/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Domenico Cimarosa,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Aurčle Nicolet,  Christine Nicolet,  William Bennett
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger,  George Malcolm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  English Chamber Orchestra
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  • 14.
    Serenades For String Orchestra / Munchinger, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4800447 Release Date: 03/16/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Edvard Grieg,  Josef Suk,  Hugo Wolf
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 15.
    Vivaldi: Le Quattro Stagioni; Corelli, Pergolesi / Munchinger, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 417873 Release Date: 09/24/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Giovanni Battista Pergolesi,  Arcangelo Corelli
    Performer:  Wener Krotzinger,  Jean-Pierre Rampal,  Werner Keltsch,  Siegfried Barchet  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 16.
    Elisabeth Grummer Sings Mozart, Schubert, Brahms & Wolf
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 94209 Release Date: 09/08/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Franz Schubert,  Johannes Brahms,  Hugo Wolf
    Performer:  Arthur Grumiaux,  Elisabeth Grümmer,  Hugo Diez
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 17.
    Healing: Music To Soothe The Mind And Body
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001294002 Release Date: 08/25/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Claudio Arrau,  Heinrich Schiff,  Samuel Sanders,  András Schiff  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  Richard Bonynge,  James Judd,  Karl Münchinger  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  National Philharmonic Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 18.
    Bach Adagios
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001313002 Release Date: 08/11/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Pepe Romero,  Heinz Holliger,  György Sebok,  János Starker  ... 
    Conductor:  Heinz Holliger,  Sir Neville Marriner,  Iona Brown,  Arpád Gerecz  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Les Solistes Romands,  English Chamber Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $48.99
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  • 19.
    Ultimate Classical Dreams - The Essential Masterpieces
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001280302 Release Date: 04/21/2009   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Gabriel Fauré,  Joaquin Rodrigo,  Samuel Barber,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Marisa Robles,  Jack Brymer,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  David Zinman,  Frederick Fennell,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Baltimore Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 20.
    Flute Adagios
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001280202 Release Date: 04/14/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Albert Roussel,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Jacques Ibert,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
    Performer:  Michael Grandt,  Irena Grafenauer,  William Bennett,  Timothy Hutchins  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Sir Neville Marriner,  Benjamin Britten,  Karl Münchinger  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Grumiaux Trio,  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields  ... 
    CD: $16.99
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  • 21.
    The Number One Vivaldi Album
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4765885 Release Date: 03/20/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Konstanty Andrzej Kulka,  Andrea Griminelli,  Eduardo Fernández,  William Bennett  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger,  Sir David Willcocks,  Sir Neville Marriner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  Lucerne Festival Strings,  Cambridge King's College Choir  ... 
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  • 22.
    Bach: Johannes-passion / Münchinger, Ameling, Hamari, Prey
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 414068 Release Date: 02/18/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Dieter Ellenbeck,  Walter Berry,  Hermann Prey,  Werner Hollweg  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  Stuttgart Hymnus Boys Choir
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  • 23.
    Bach: Mass In B Minor / Karl Münchinger
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 414251 Release Date: 01/30/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Werner Krenn,  Helen Watts,  Yvonne Minton,  Elly Ameling  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  Vienna Singverein
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  • 24.
    Vivaldi - Adagios
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001212502 Release Date: 10/28/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Igor Kipnis,  Konstanty Andrzej Kulka,  Eduardo Fernandez,  Tom Finucane  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Münchinger,  George Malcolm,  Philip Pickett,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  English Chamber Orchestra,  New London Consort  ... 
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  • 25.
    Strauss: Don Quixote, Till Eulenspiegel, Metamorphosen / Haitink, Jochum, Sinopoli
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4800478 Release Date: 10/13/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Tibor de Machula
    Conductor:  Bernard Haitink,  Eugen Jochum,  Giuseppe Sinopoli,  Karl Münchinger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra,  Dresden Staatskapelle,  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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