Artur Rodzinski

Biography

Born: January 1, 1892; Spalato, Croatia   Died: November 27, 1958; Boston, MA  
Artur Rodzinski was one of the most important conductors in the United States during his time.

His father was an army surgeon. Artur received his early musical training in Lwow. He found himself attracted to a career in music, but he studied law Vienna, at the same time pursuing musical studies privately, including conducting with Franz Schalk.

After World War I military service he returned to Lwow as a choral conductor. In 1920
Read more he conducted at the opera, debuting in Verdi's Ernani. In Warsaw he gave the Polish premieres of Strauss' Rosenkavalier, Ravel's L'heure espagnole, and Wolf-Ferrari's I gioelli della madonna. He also conducted orchestral concerts.

Leopold Stokowski invited him to come to Philadelphia to guest conduct in November 1925 and hired him as assistant conductor starting in 1926. Rodzinski at the same time joined the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music as head of the opera and orchestral departments.

He was appointed music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1929, and of the Cleveland Orchestra in 1933, beginning its rise as a top-rank ensemble. He made some notable recordings, particularly of Shostakovich symphonies, and gave the American premiere of the same composer's opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk in 1935. He made sensational appearances with the New York Philharmonic, and in Salzburg and Vienna.

In 1937 the NBC Broadcasting Network formed its own symphony orchestra and hired Arturo Toscanini to lead it. Rodzinski was given the job of actually choosing, assembling, and training the musicians. Rodzinski understood that Toscanini, who was stepping down from his leadership of the New York Philharmonic to take the NBC job, would see Rodzinski appointed as his successor.

But the manager, Arthur Judson, had his own candidate, John Barbirolli, who got the job. A faction of the orchestra and audience (not to mention critics) who favored Rodzinski made Barbirolli's tenure unusually difficult. Barbirolli left at an urgent request to take over Manchester's Hallé Orchestra, and Rodzinski was hired at the Philharmonic in 1942. His first action was to fire 14 members of the orchestra, including the concertmaster. When his contract was up in 1947, he raised some issues of policy that he knew Judson would oppose, then confronted the board with the proposition that it was him or Judson. While this was going on, word got out that he was secretly negotiating to take over the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the board had no trouble choosing Judson.

He only conducted in Chicago for one season. The board there fired him for arbitrarily making last-minute program changes causing confusion and expense and doing opera concerts, with the additional unauthorized expense of bringing in the singers. However, one of these was a Tristan that was legendary and brought Kirsten Flagstadt back to the U.S.

After he was dismissed, he guest conducted, especially in Latin America, but ill health curtailed his activities. He is credited not only with building the Cleveland Orchestra, but immediately restoring the New York Philharmonic and Chicago Symphony from periods of decline. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 36 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    The Westminster Legacy
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001999302 Release Date: 02/18/2014   Number of Discs: 40
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Gustav Mahler  ... 
    Performer:  Sena Jurinac,  Lucretia West,  Hans Loeffler,  Frederick Guthrie  ... 
    Conductor:  Hermann Scherchen,  Pierre Monteux,  René Leibowitz,  Erich Leinsdorf  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Orchestra,  Vienna Academy Chamber Chorus  ... 
    On sale! $149.98
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  • 2.
    The Art Of Erica Morini -  Westminster / American Decca Recordings
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 40044 Release Date: 11/12/2013   Number of Discs: 11
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Giuseppe Tartini,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Performer:  Erica Morini,  Leon Pommers,  Walter Trampler,  Felix Galimir  ... 
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski,  Nicholas Harsanyi,  Frederic Waldman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Princeton Chamber Orchestra,  Musica Aeterna
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  • 3.
    Label: Gala   Catalog: 100634 Release Date: 11/01/2013   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Umberto Giordano
    Performer:  Sylvia Sawyer,  Stella Roman,  Gino Sarri,  Franco Pugliese  ... 
    Conductor:  Alberto Paoletti,  Artur Rodzinski
    On sale! $30.99
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  • 4.
    Label: Urania   Catalog: 22361 Release Date: 07/16/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    On sale! $15.98
    CD: $13.99
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  • 5.
    Essential Overtures
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 27866 Release Date: 06/05/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  George Frideric Handel,  Christoph W. Gluck,  Mikhail Glinka  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini,  Gianluigi Gelmetti,  Sir David Willcocks,  Riccardo Muti  ... 
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  • 6.
    50 Best Overtures & Preludes
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 27368 Release Date: 05/22/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Gaetano Donizetti,  Vincenzo Bellini  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini,  Gianluigi Gelmetti,  Lamberto Gardelli,  Sir Colin Davis  ... 
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  • 7.
    Best Overtures 100
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 27333 Release Date: 05/22/2012   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Gaetano Donizetti,  Vincenzo Bellini  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini,  Gianluigi Gelmetti,  Lamberto Gardelli,  Sir Colin Davis  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 8.
    Label: Andromeda   Catalog: 5022 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev
    Performer:  Anselmo Colzani,  Italo Tajo,  Vittoria Calma,  Ettore Bastianini  ... 
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Florence Maggio Musicale Orchestra,  Florence Maggio Musicale Chorus
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  • 9.
    Lebendige Vergangenheit - Rose Pauly
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89714 Release Date: 03/10/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Giacomo Puccini,  Pietro Mascagni,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Rose Pauly
    Conductor:  Fritz Busch,  Sir John Barbirolli,  Artur Rodzinski,  Fritz Reiner  ... 
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  • 10.
    Prokofiev: Alexander Nevsky, Symphony No 5 / Rodzinski, Et Al
    Label: Urania   Catalog: 361 Release Date: 09/30/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Italian Radio Chorus Rome,  Italian Radio Symphony Orchestra Rome
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  • 11.
    Artur Rodzinski - Artist Profile
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 68742 Release Date: 12/26/2007   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Modest Mussorgsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 12.
    Chopin: Piano Concertos No 1 & 2 / Badura-skoda, Et Al
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 1206 Release Date: 11/06/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Paul Badura-Skoda
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna State Opera Orchestra
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  • 13.
    Shostakovich: Symphony No 8 / Artur Rodzinski, Et Al
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 2322 Release Date: 08/21/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Dmitri Shostakovich
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra
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    On sale! $15.98
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  • 14.
    Chicago Symphony Orchestra- The Centennial Collection
    Label: Rca Victor Gold Seal   Catalog: 60206 Release Date: 04/09/2007   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  César Franck,  Richard Wagner,  Bedrich Smetana  ... 
    Performer:  Artur Rubinstein,  Leontyne Price,  Sviatoslav Richter,  Jascha Heifetz
    Conductor:  Frederick Stock,  Carlo Maria Giulini,  Desiré DeFauw,  Artur Rodzinski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    On sale! $33.98
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  • 15.
    Arthur Schnabel Plays Mozart
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 1193 Release Date: 02/13/2007   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Artur Schnabel,  Karl Ulrich Schnabel,  Robert Mass,  Germain Prévost  ... 
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter,  Sir Adrian Boult,  Sir John Barbirolli,  Walter Susskind  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Pro Arte String Quartet members  ... 
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  • 16.
    The Complete Salomea Krushelnytska & Selected Recordings By Elena Ruszkowska
    Label: Marston   Catalog: 52052 Release Date: 02/12/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Stanislaw Moniuszko,  Giacomo Puccini,  Amilcare Ponchielli,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Elena Ruszkowska,  Egidio Cunego,  Bianca Lavin de Casas,  Carlo Barrera  ... 
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski,  Carlo Sabajno
    CD: $36.99
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  • 17.
    Carnegie Hall
    Label: Bel Canto Society   Catalog: 791 Release Date: 11/08/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Eduardo Di Capua  ... 
    Performer:  Jascha Heifetz,  Ezio Pinza,  Jan Peerce,  Artur Rubinstein  ... 
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner,  Artur Rodzinski,  Bruno Walter,  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
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    On sale! $18.98
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  • 18.
    The Complete Josef Hofmann Vol 8
    Label: Marston   Catalog: 52044 Release Date: 05/01/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Anton Rubinstein,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Josef Hofmann
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski,  Eugene Ormandy,  Karl Krueger
    CD: $36.99
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  • 19.
    Bronislaw Huberman In Performance - Brahms, Tchaikovsky
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 1122 Release Date: 09/30/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Bronislaw Huberman
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy,  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra
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  • 20.
    Zino Francescatti In Performance - Tchaikovsky, Bruch, Et Al
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 1118 Release Date: 04/29/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Max Bruch,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Zino Francescatti
    Conductor:  Charles Munch,  Frank Black,  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  ORTF Philharmonic Orchestra,  NBC Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra
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  • 21.
    Caravan - The Ultimate Silk-road Album
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 472398 Release Date: 07/16/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Nielsen,  Alexander Borodin,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Michel Schwalbé
    Conductor:  Herbert Blomstedt,  Neeme Järvi,  Bernhard Klee,  Herbert von Karajan  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  San Francisco Symphony Chorus,  San Francisco Symphony Orchestra,  Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $15.99
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  • 22.
    Westminster - Kodály, Ippolitov-Ivanov / Rodzinski, Royal PO
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 471267 Release Date: 06/11/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Mikhail Ippolitov-Ivanov,  Zoltán Kodály
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 23.
    Westminster - Tchaikovsky, Dvorak / Rodzinski, Royal Po
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 471272 Release Date: 06/11/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 24.
    Legendary Treasures - Nathan Milstein Collection Vol 1
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 7752 Release Date: 11/13/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Bruch,  Johannes Brahms,  Henri Wieniawski,  Niccolò Paganini  ... 
    Performer:  Nathan Milstein,  Valentin Pavlovsky,  Artur Balsam
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
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  • 25.
    Westminster - Tchaikovsky: Symphony No 4, Nutcracker
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 471228 Release Date: 09/18/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Artur Rodzinski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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