Karl Ristenpart


Born: January 26, 1900; Kiel, Germany   Died: December 24, 1967; Lisbon, Portugal  
This German conductor was heavily involved in creating three orchestras in his lifetime, most notably the Chamber Orchestra of the Saar. With this group he is often considered to have created one of the definitive recorded collections of Bach's orchestral music. These recordings originally saw the light of day in the early '60s as a Nonesuch release on both LP and cassette. Following an out of print period, it was cause for celebration among Bach Read more lovers when the French Accord label released a six-CD set comprising the entire set of Ristenpart recordings of Bach orchestral works. The conductor and his colleagues from Saarbrucken have also recorded impressive performances of works by Mozart and Haydn, among others. The lasting fame he received for these interpretations of Baroque music and Mozart overshadowed the fact that as the head of the Saar orchestra he brought in works by approximately 250 composers, at least half of them considered modern or contemporary. A possible influence in this direction was Ristenpart's mother, Paula Schramm, later Pauline Rettig. (Her second marriage was to Hermann Scherchen, the politically active conductor responsible for the premiere performances of what were at the time controversial pieces by composers such Berg and Xenakis).

Ristenpart studied at the Stern Conservatory in Berlin and Vienna, the latter city exerting a strong musical influence. In 1932, he was chosen as a conductor of the Berlin Chamber Orchestra, which also came to be known as the Chamber Orchestra of Karl Ristenpart. He also led a series of concerts with the Berlin Radio Orchestra, but began to have great difficulty in his career as a young conductor in Germany when the Nazis came to power. Following World War II, with that city divided into several foreign sectors, he was named conductor for "Radio in the American Sector of Berlin" or the Chamber Orchestra of R.I.A.S., the second of his important periods of orchestra development. This was the beginning of his breakthrough to fame as a conductor, although the post-war political situation created many financial problems for German radio broadcasting in the early '50s.

He first began working as conductor with the Chamber Orchestra of the Saar in 1953, and the ensuing collaboration with Ristenpart was fruitful, leading to many tours, recordings and partnerships with premier soloists such as flautist Jean-Pierre Rampal. Approximately 170 albums featuring Ristenpart and this orchestra have been marketed all over the world. These include several albums of Bach vocal cantatas, including an Archiv production featuring baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Herman Totcher playing oboe and oboe da caccia. Ristenpart was later based in Portugal, where he died in the late '60s. Unfortunately, the Chamber Orchestra of the Saar was unable to survive the dimming of its guiding light. German author Charles W. Scheel has published a biography of Ristenpart, so far available only in German from the Saarbrücker Druckerei und Verlag (printing and publishing house). Read less
Browse 1-17 of 17 Available Recordings
  • 1.
    Schubert, Wolf & Strauss: Lieder / Wunderlich
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 557389 Release Date: 09/16/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Hugo Wolf,  Richard Strauss,  Fritz Neumeyer  ... 
    Performer:  Fritz Wunderlich,  Rolf Reinhardt,  Otto Steinkopf,  Herbert Naumann  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Ristenpart,  Karl Forster
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  • 2.
    Archiv Produktion: Analogue Stereo Recordings (1959-1981)
    Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog: 002490502 Release Date: 05/20/2016   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Pierre Vachon,  Nicolas-Marie Dalayrac,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Stader,  Hedwig Bilgram,  Hertha Töpper,  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Richter,  August Wenzinger,  Karl Ristenpart,  Robert Stehli  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Bach Orchestra,  Munich Bach Choir,  Loewenguth String Quartet  ... 
    On sale! $111.98
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  • 3.
    111: The Collector's Editions [111 CDs]
    Label: Dg Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002422702 Release Date: 12/11/2015   Number of Discs: 111
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Maurice Ravel,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Igor Oistrakh,  Sviatoslav Richter,  Martha Argerich  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Abbado,  Daniel Barenboim,  Lorin Maazel,  Franz Konwitschny  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Amadeus Quartet,  Paris Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $325.49
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  • 4.
    Jean-Pierre Rampal: The Complete HMV Recordings 1951-76
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 552119 Release Date: 09/18/2015   Number of Discs:  16
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Georg Philipp Telemann,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Robert Veyron-Lacroix,  Jean-Pierre Rampal,  Jean Huchot,  Serge Collot  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Ristenpart,  Fernand Oubradous
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sarre Chamber Orchestra,  Pascal String Quartet,  Pasquier Trio  ... 
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  • 5.
    Maurice Andre: Trumpet Maestro
    Label: Indesens   Catalog: 75 Release Date: 09/11/2015   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Nepomuk Hummel,  Michael Haydn,  Gottfried H. Stölzel,  Tomaso Albinoni  ... 
    Performer:  Maurice André,  Marcel Lagorce,  Rheinhold Barchet,  Kurt Redel  ... 
    Conductor:  Jean-Baptiste Mari,  Jean-François Paillard,  Karl Ristenpart,  Frans Brüggen  ... 
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  • 6.
    Jean-Pierre Rampal: The Complete Erato Recordings, Vol 2 – 1963-69
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 2564619043 Release Date: 05/26/2015   Number of Discs: 20
    Composer:  Traditional,  Jean-Baptiste Krumpholtz,  Gabriel Fauré,  Jacques Ibert  ... 
    Performer:  Lily Laskine,  Jean-Pierre Rampal,  Pierre Pasquier,  Bernard Fonteny  ... 
    Conductor:  Jean-François Paillard,  André Jolivet,  Theodor Guschlbauer,  André Girard  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Paillard Chamber Orchestra,  Lamoureux Concerts Association Orchestra,  Vienna Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $55.98
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  • 7.
    Les Triomphes De Jean-pierre Rampal
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 631358 Release Date: 06/10/2014   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Jean-Marie Leclair,  Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach  ... 
    Performer:  Jean-Pierre Rampal,  Robert Veyron-Lacroix,  Edith Picht-Axenfeld,  Piano] Edith [Harpsichord Picht-Axenfeld  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Scimone,  Jean-François Paillard,  Karl Ristenpart,  Raymond Leppard  ... 
    On sale! $19.98
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  • 8.
    Archiv Produktion 1947-2013
    Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog: 001833572 Release Date: 06/18/2013   Number of Discs: 55
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Anonymous,  Adam de la Halle,  Raimbaut de Vaqeiras  ... 
    Performer:  Helmut Walcha,  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Hermann Töttcher,  Maria Jung  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Ristenpart,  Fritz Lehmann,  Maurus Pfaff,  Safford Cape  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Karl Ristenpart Chamber Orchestra,  Bach Festival Orchestra,  Frankfurt Music School Chorus  ... 
    CD: $132.49
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  • 9.
    The RIAS Bach Cantatas Project / Ristenpart, RIAS Kammerorchester & Kammerchor
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 21415 Release Date: 04/24/2012   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Lorri Lail,  Annelies Westen,  Gerda Lammers,  Lilo Rolwes  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Ristenpart
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin RIAS Chamber Chorus,  Berlin RIAS Chamber Orchestra,  Berlin Rias Boys Chorus
    CD: $58.99
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  • 10.
    Label: Idi   Catalog: 6605 Release Date: 12/02/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Georg Philipp Telemann
    Performer:  Jean-Pierre Rampal,  Lily Laskine
    Conductor:  Jean-François Paillard,  Karl Ristenpart
    CD: $14.99
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  • 11.
    Mozart: Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Haffner Serenade / Ristenpart
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 5046661512 Release Date: 11/30/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Conductor:  Karl Ristenpart
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Saar Chamber Orchestra
    CD: $8.99
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  • 12.
    Maurice Andre Edition - Concertos Vol. 1
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 4695722 Release Date: 11/16/2010   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Tomaso Albinoni,  Giuseppe Tartini  ... 
    Performer:  Maurice André,  Marcel Lagorce,  Lionel André,  Pierre Pierlot  ... 
    Conductor:  Theodor Guschlbauer,  Jean-François Paillard,  Sir Neville Marriner,  Karl Ristenpart  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bamberg Symphony Orchestra,  Paillard Chamber Orchestra,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ens.  ... 
    CD: $44.49
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  • 13.
    Icon - Fritz Wunderlich
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 29525 Release Date: 09/14/2010   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Heinrich Finck,  Heinrich Isaac,  Adam Krieger,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
    Performer:  Herbert Naumann,  Fritz Wunderlich,  Otto Steinkopf,  Gerhard Kastner  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Forster,  Hans Müller-Kray,  Berislav Klobucar,  Robert Heger  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Berlin St. Hedwig Cathedral Choir,  Bavarian State Opera Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $42.98
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  • 14.
    Alain Marion - A Life In Music
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 298502 Release Date: 03/21/2006   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  George Frideric Handel,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Louis Noël Belaubre,  Alain Marion,  Jean Barthe,  Angčle Dubeau  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Ristenpart,  Raymond Guiot
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sarre Chamber Orchestra,  Orchestre Symphonique
    CD: $34.99
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  • 15.
    The Essential Jean-pierre Rampal
    Label: Sony Classical Essential Classics   Catalog: 89736 Release Date: 09/11/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Georg Philipp Telemann,  Sergei Prokofiev,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
    Performer:  Jean Huchot,  Jean-Pierre Rampal,  Robert Veyron-Lacroix,  Lily Laskine  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Scimone,  Karl Ristenpart
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Jerusalem Music Center Chamber Orchestra,  I Solisti Veneti,  Saar Chamber Orchestra
    CD: $6.99
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  • 16.
    Bach: Kantaten / Fischer-Dieskau, Lehmann, Ristenpart
    Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog: 449756 Release Date: 11/11/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
    Performer:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Maria Jung,  Helmut Krebs,  Hermann Töttcher
    Conductor:  Fritz Lehmann,  Karl Ristenpart
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bach Festival Orchestra,  Frankfurt Music School Chorus,  Karl Ristenpart Chamber Orchestra
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 17.
    La Flute Enchantee / Jean-Pierre Rampal
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 69642 Release Date: 04/22/1997   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Georg Philipp Telemann,  Henri Gagnebin,  Amable Massis,  Arthur Honegger  ... 
    Performer:  Jean-Pierre Rampal,  Françoise Gobet,  Pierre Pierlot,  Lily Laskine  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Ristenpart,  Fernand Oubradous
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sarre Chamber Orchestra,  Paris Chamber Concerts Association,  Pasquier Trio  ... 
    On sale! $39.98
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