Cleveland Orchestra

Biography

Active: 1918 - ; Cleveland, OH
Since its founding, the Cleveland Orchestra has become a source of tremendous pride for the city of Cleveland. It is one of America's artistic treasures, an orchestra capable of playing as well as any in the world. Chamber music flourished in Cleveland from the middle of the nineteenth century on, but the orchestra was not founded until 1918. Adella P. Hughes, with the support of the Musical Arts Association, spearheaded the formation of the Read more orchestra and engaged Russian-American conductor Nikolai Sokoloff to direct it. Sokoloff remained music director until 1933, and led national tours, educational concerts, commercial recordings, and radio broadcasts. Perhaps the most important legacy of his tenure is Severance Hall, which opened in 1931 and received immediate renown for both its acoustics and its aesthetics. In 1999 the hall was renovated and improved, and then reopened in January 2000 to renewed acclaim. Artur Rodzinski directed the orchestra from 1933 to 1943 and was followed by Erich Leinsdorf from 1943 to 1946. Both of these men contributed to Cleveland's budding reputation, but the golden age of orchestral playing in Cleveland came with the arrival of the now-legendary George Szell in 1946. One of the last of the old-time conductors, Szell ruled the orchestra with an iron fist, lashed out at players who he felt were giving less than full effort, erupted at even the smallest technical mistakes, and built the best orchestra in America. The Cleveland Orchestra under Szell played with marvelously clear textures, impeccable precision, perfect ensemble and inspiring passion. It was also astonishingly adaptable to different genres and styles of music; Szell liked to say that the specialty of the Cleveland Orchestra was that it had no specialty. The orchestra recorded extensively for Columbia (now Sony), toured internationally and staked its claim as the biggest of the Big Five American orchestras. In 1968, the orchestra began a long and fruitful association with composer and conductor Pierre Boulez. During the same year Szell opened the Blossom Music Centre, a summer concert venue owned by the orchestra, which has been enormously successful financially and musically. Szell died in 1970, but could have been music director for as long as he wanted. Boulez served as musical advisor until 1972, when Lorin Maazel became music director. While Maazel was and is a great conductor, the orchestra felt they had not been properly consulted in the decision to hire him, and his tenure was marked by controversy. His interpretations were seen as overly extreme, and although he kept the orchestra playing at a high technical level, he was never much loved by the city of Cleveland. The appointment of Christoph von Dohnanyi as music director in 1982 started the Cleveland Orchestra on another long run of greatness. Dohnanyi successfully preserved the tonal clarity of the Szell years, while broadening the orchestra's repertoire to include more new music and modern classics. Franz Welser-Möst succeeded Dohnanyi in the 2002-2003 season. To the extent that orchestras can be ranked, the Cleveland Orchestra is widely considered America's best, and the city of Cleveland supports its orchestra in the manner it deserves. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 215 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Pierre Boulez conducts Debussy
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 19439787742 Release Date: 12/04/2020   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Gervase de Peyer,  Alice Chalifoux,  George Shirley,  Donald McIntyre  ... 
    Conductor:  Pierre Boulez
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  John Alldis Choir,  Cleveland Orchestra  ... 
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  • 2.
    George Szell - The Warner Recordings 1934-1970
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 526718 Release Date: 11/06/2020   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Edouard Lalo,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Bronislaw Huberman,  Artur Schnabel,  Benno Moiseiwitsch,  Pablo Casals  ... 
    Conductor:  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Czech Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 3.
    Schubert: Symphony No. 9 - Křenek: Static and Ecstatic / Welser-Most, Cleveland Orchestra
    Label: Cleveland Orchestra   Catalog: 2 Release Date: 10/02/2020   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Ernst Krenek
    Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
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  • 4.
    Isaac Stern: Complete Columbia Analogue Recordings
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 972425 Release Date: 07/03/2020   Number of Discs: 75
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Henri Wieniawski,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  Isaac Stern,  Alexander Zakin,  Oscar Levant,  Marcel Tabuteau  ... 
    Conductor:  Alexander Hilsberg,  Efrem Kurtz,  Isaac Stern,  Eugene Ormandy  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  Columbia String Orchestra  ... 
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  • 5.
    A New Century / Welser-Most, Cleveland Orchestra
    Label: Cleveland Orchestra   Catalog: 1 Release Date: 06/05/2020   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Edgard Varčse,  Johannes Maria Staud,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
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  • 6.
    Beethoven: Legendary Recordings
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 19075973752 Release Date: 12/06/2019   Number of Discs: 25
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Maureen Forrester,  Leontyne Price,  David Poleri,  Giorgio Tozzi  ... 
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter,  George Szell,  Leonard Bernstein,  Fritz Reiner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Columbia Symphony Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic  ... 
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  • 7.
    George Szell conducts Concertos & Symphonies
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 19018 Release Date: 08/23/2019   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn,  Franz Schubert,  Carl Maria von Weber,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  Robert Casadesus,  Leon Fleisher,  Leonard Rose,  Isaac Stern  ... 
    Conductor:  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra,  Columbia Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 8.
    George Szell conducts Dvorak & Smetana
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 19075921662 Release Date: 04/26/2019   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Bedrich Smetana
    Conductor:  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic
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  • 9.
    Robert Casadesus: Complete Columbia Album Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 19075853652 Release Date: 03/01/2019   Number of Discs: 65
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Jean-Philippe Rameau,  Domenico Scarlatti  ... 
    Performer:  Robert Casadesus,  Zino Francescatti,  Gaby Casadesus,  Jean Casadesus  ... 
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy,  George Szell,  Sir John Barbirolli,  Artur Rodzinski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Columbia Symphony Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra  ... 
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  • 10.
    The Cleveland Orchestra Centennial Celebration [Blu-ray]
    Label: Belvedere   Catalog: 8055 Release Date: 02/08/2019   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Richard Strauss,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Lang Lang
    Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    Blu-ray Video: $24.99
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  • 11.
    Brahms: Violin Concerto, Symphony No. 4 & Academic Festival Overture / Welser-Most, Cleveland Orchestra
    Label: Belvedere   Catalog: 8006 Release Date: 09/14/2018   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Julia Fischer
    Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    DVD: $29.99
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  • 12.
    Brahms: Violin Concerto, Symphony No. 4 & Academic Festival Overture / Welser-Most, Cleveland Orchestra [Blu-ray]
    Label: Belvedere   Catalog: 8010 Release Date: 09/14/2018   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Julia Fischer
    Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    Blu-ray Video: $30.99
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  • 13.
    Debussy: La mer & Nocturnes / Boulez, Cleveland Orchestra [Vinyl]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4798519 Release Date: 03/23/2018   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Conductor:  Pierre Boulez
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    LP: $34.99
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  • 14.
    Debussy: The Complete Works
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 565660 Release Date: 01/05/2018   Number of Discs: 33
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Robert Schumann,  Joachim Raff,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Aldo Ciccolini,  Cécile Ousset,  Michel Béroff,  Samson François  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  François-Xavier Roth,  Armin Jordan,  Jean Martinon  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Quatuor Ebčne,  Nash Ensemble,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields  ... 
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    On sale! $89.98
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  • 15.
    Pierre Boulez conducts Stravinsky
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 88985465172 Release Date: 01/05/2018   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Conductor:  Pierre Boulez
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  Ensemble InterContemporain  ... 
    CD: $19.99
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  • 16.
    Waltz Gold: 50 Great Tracks
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 4832499 Release Date: 11/10/2017   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Emil Waldteufel,  Franz Lehár,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Nelson Freire,  Anton Karas,  Katia Labčque  ... 
    Conductor:  André Rieu,  Neeme Järvi,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Richard Bonynge  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Johann Strauss Orchestra,  Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $25.99
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  • 17.
    Beethoven: Symphonies Nos. 6, 7 & 8 / Kubelik
    Label: Pentatone   Catalog: 5186250 Release Date: 11/03/2017   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Paris Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra
    SuperAudio CD: $29.99
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  • 18.
    Ashkenazy: Complete Concerto Recordings / Various
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 4831752 Release Date: 08/04/2017   Number of Discs: 48
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Keith Puddy,  Fou Ts'ong,  Daniel Barenboim  ... 
    Conductor:  Anatole Fistoulari,  Lorin Maazel,  Kiril Kondrashin,  David Zinman  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Ambrosian Singers,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $222.99
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  • 19.
    John Browning: The Complete RCA Album Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 88985395032 Release Date: 06/16/2017   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Samuel Barber,  William Schuman,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Sergei Prokofiev  ... 
    Performer:  John Browning,  Leonard Rose
    Conductor:  George Szell,  Erich Leinsdorf,  Seiji Ozawa
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 20.
    Pierre Boulez & The Cleveland Orchestra
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4797248 Release Date: 04/28/2017   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Gustav Mahler,  Olivier Messiaen,  Maurice Ravel  ... 
    Performer:  Juliane Banse,  Pierre-Laurent Aimard
    Conductor:  Pierre Boulez
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    CD: $34.99
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  • 21.
    Brahms: Ein deutsches Requiem / Welser-Most, Cleveland Orchestra
    Label: Belvedere   Catalog: 8027 Release Date: 02/24/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    DVD: $30.99
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  • 22.
    Beethoven: Piano Concertos Nos. 1-5 / Szell, Gilels, Cleveland Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 559442 Release Date: 02/10/2017   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Emil Gilels
    Conductor:  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    On sale! $18.98
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  • 23.
    Great American Orchestras
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2970 Release Date: 01/13/2017   Number of Discs: 11
    Composer:  Pierre Boulez,  Claude Debussy,  Manuel de Falla,  José Carli  ... 
    Performer:  Elisabete Matos,  Kenneth Riegel,  Christine Schäfer,  Itzhak Perlman
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim,  Leonard Bernstein,  Pierre Boulez,  Lorin Maazel  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Tanglewood Festival Chorus  ... 
    On sale! $49.97
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  • 24.
    50 Classical Masterworks
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002596702 Release Date: 12/02/2016   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Bedrich Smetana,  Johannes Brahms,  Antonín Dvorák  ... 
    Performer:  David Garrett,  Hélčne Grimaud,  Max Richter,  Daniel Hope  ... 
    Conductor:  Gustavo Dudamel,  Rafael Kubelik,  Herbert von Karajan,  André de Ridder  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Konzerthaus Kammerorchester Berlin  ... 
    CD: $22.49
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  • 25.
    Mozart: Piano Concertos No. 17, K453 & No. 25, K503 / Uchida, Cleveland Orchestra
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002571602 Release Date: 10/28/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Mitsuko Uchida
    Conductor:  Mitsuko Uchida
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
    CD: $22.49
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