American Symphony Orchestra

Biography

In 1962, Leopold Stokowski -- one of the most famous, charismatic, and controversial conductors of the second quarter of the twentieth century -- found his career ebbing. Stokowski had recently been toiling in places like Houston, TX, and recording with pickup orchestras when he decided to form his own orchestra in New York City, but not a clone of the entrenched New York Philharmonic. He recruited American musicians, not the European imports who Read more populated the nation's other major orchestras. He hired young musicians, women, and people of color, and with them performed a mix of standard and unusual pieces in Carnegie Hall. Tickets were extraordinarily cheap to attract young audiences and people not otherwise part of the usual symphony crowd. His creation, the American Symphony Orchestra, boosted Stokowski's profile during his final decade. But more importantly, the orchestra brought great and neglected music, new and old, to new audiences and gave experience to such young players as trumpeter (and later conductor) Gerard Schwarz and clarinetist Franklin Cohen. Guest artists included such fresh soloists as Itzhak Perlman and venerable conductors as Karl Böhm and Igor Markevitch. Stokowski's retirement in 1972 threw the orchestra into a minor crisis. Without a glamorous leader to draw attention to the organization, the players formed a management cooperative and hired Kazuyoshi Akiyama as music director through 1978. Sergiu Comissiona then took over through 1982. Eventually, the management cooperative was disbanded in favor of a more traditional structure, but the orchestra artistically floundered through the 1980s. Hopes of becoming Carnegie Hall's "house orchestra," with subsidized appearances, came to nothing and the group's season decreased to four concerts. In 1992, the competent but little-known conductor/scholar Leon Botstein became the orchestra's music director and he immediately revitalized the group. Although reviews initially faulted Botstein for his cautious interpretations, his programming was remarkably innovative. Each concert was built upon some theme linking music to the visual arts, literature, politics, or popular culture, with tie-in events at other institutions. Botstein made a specialty of the byways of nineteenth and twentieth century music. The orchestra, comprising New York's top freelance musicians and now based at Lincoln Center, sponsors companion chamber music concerts and offers an adult education concert series at Columbia University, as well as one for teenagers at high schools in Manhattan and New Jersey. Its summer home is the Bard Music Festival at Bard College in New York. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 25 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Beethoven: The 5 Piano Concertos  / Glenn Gould
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 541288 Release Date: 10/30/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Glenn Gould
    Conductor:  Vladimir Golschmann,  Leonard Bernstein,  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Columbia Symphony Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  American Symphony Orchestra
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  • 2.
    Leopold Stokowski - The Columbia Stereo Recordings
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 197115 Release Date: 09/11/2012   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Manuel de Falla,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Charles Ives  ... 
    Performer:  Shirley Verrett,  Fernando Valenti,  Anshel Brusilow,  William Kincaid  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Gregg Smith
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  American Symphony Orchestra,  Schola Cantorum New York members  ... 
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  • 3.
    Leopold Stokowski - The Stereo Collection 1954-1975
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 1916852 Release Date: 08/21/2012   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Gustav Mahler,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Margaret Price,  Brigitte Fassbaender,  Anna Moffo,  Martina Arroyo  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  New Symphony Orchestra,  Norman Luboff Choir  ... 
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  • 4.
    Canteloube: Songs of the Auvergne; Villa-Lobos, Rachmaninov / Anna Moffo
    Label: Newton Classics   Catalog: 8802085 Release Date: 10/25/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Joseph Canteloube,  Heitor Villa-Lobos,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Anna Moffo
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra
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  • 5.
    Label: Composers Recordings, Inc. (Cri)   Catalog: 267 Release Date: 09/01/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Werner Josten,  Gail Kubik
    Performer:  Arthur Hanneuse,  Marie-Thérèse Chailley,  Frank Glazer
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Gail Kubik
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  French Radio Orchestra
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  • 6.
    Corigliano: Oboe Concerto, Poem In October, Etc / Lucarelli
    Label: Rca Victor Gold Seal   Catalog: 60395 Release Date: 10/15/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Corigliano
    Performer:  Humbert Lucarelli,  Robert White,  Ransom Wilson,  Joseph Rabbai  ... 
    Conductor:  Kazuyoshi Akiyama,  Maurice Peress
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  American String Quartet
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  • 7.
    Ives: Symphony No 4, Browning Overture, Songs / Stokowski
    Label: Cbs Masterworks Portrait   Catalog: 46726 Release Date: 12/26/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Ives
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Gregg Smith
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Schola Cantorum New York members,  American Symphony Orchestra,  Gregg Smith Singers  ... 
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  • 8.
    Art Of The Violin 3 / Senofsky
    Label: Cembal D'amour   Catalog: 126 Release Date: 09/25/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Berl Senofsky
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Pierre Monteux
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra
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  • 9.
    Gould: Apple Waltzes, Burchfield Gallery / American So
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 5019 Release Date: 08/29/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Morton Gould
    Conductor:  Morton Gould
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra
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  • 10.
    Musical Christmas Tree - Morton Gould
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 7931 Release Date: 08/06/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Xaver Gruber,  Traditional,  Katherine K. Davis,  William James Kirkpatrick  ... 
    Conductor:  Morton Gould
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Morton Gould Orchestra,  American Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 11.
    Copland, Sessions, Perle / Leon Botstein
    Label: New World Records   Catalog: 80631 Release Date: 05/31/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Aaron Copland,  Roger Sessions,  George Perle,  Bernard Rands
    Conductor:  Leon Botstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra
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  • 12.
    Dohnányi: Orchestral & Chamber Music / Cutler, Crow
    Label: Bridge   Catalog: 9160 Release Date: 12/28/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ernö von Dohnányi
    Performer:  Sara Cutler,  Karen Dreyfus,  Laura Flax,  Eugene Moye  ... 
    Conductor:  Leon Botstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra
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  • 13.
    Masterpieces - Tchaikovsky: Orchestral Masterpieces Vol 1
    Label: Vanguard   Catalog: 1190 Release Date: 08/12/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  John Ogdon
    Conductor:  Pierre Monteux,  Leopold Stokowski,  Mario Rossi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  American Symphony Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Orchestra
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  • 14.
    Chihara: Forever Escher, Shinju, Wind Song
    Label: New World Records   Catalog: 80597 Release Date: 06/25/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Paul Chihara
    Performer:  Jeffrey Solow,  Suenobu Togi,  Harry Fackelman,  Marjorie Bagley  ... 
    Conductor:  Gerhard Samuel,  Paul Chihara
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  Ballet Arts Orchestra,  Amherst Saxophone Quartet  ... 
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  • 15.
    Ives: Symphony No 1, Three Places In New England / Ormandy
    Label: Sony Classical Essential Classics   Catalog: 89851 Release Date: 01/29/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Ives
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra
    CD: $8.99
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  • 16.
    Rachmaninoff For Relaxation / Ormandy, Janis, Starker, Et Al
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 63799 Release Date: 06/19/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Mikhail Kazakevich,  Dmitri Alexeev,  Alexis Weissenberg,  János Starker  ... 
    Conductor:  Yuri Temirkanov,  Michael Tilson Thomas,  Fritz Reiner,  Leopold Stokowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 17.
    Rachmaninoff: Vocalise / Rachmaninoff, Moffo, Kissin, Et Al
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 63669 Release Date: 04/04/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Victor Babin,  Vitya Vronsky,  Wolfram Huschke,  Dieter Huschke  ... 
    Conductor:  Yuri Temirkanov,  Morton Gould,  Leopold Stokowski,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra,  Morton Gould Orchestra,  Norman Luboff Choir  ... 
    CD: $8.99
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  • 18.
    Zador: Christopher Columbus, Studies For Orchestra
    Label: Cambria   Catalog: 1100 Release Date: 06/29/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Eugene Zador
    Performer:  Alice Garrott,  Will Roy,  Dan Marek,  Darrell Lauer  ... 
    Conductor:  Paul Freeman,  Laszlo Halasz
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Westphalian Symphony Orchestra,  American Concert Choir,  American Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 19.
    Summer Classics - Greatest Hits
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 63186 Release Date: 06/16/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Thomas Moore,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Spivakov,  Alfred Krips,  Kong Xiang-Dong,  Gerhard Oppitz  ... 
    Conductor:  Vladimir Spivakov,  Roberto Abbado,  Arthur Fiedler,  Claus Peter Flor  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moscow Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra,  Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Boston Pops  ... 
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 20.
    Rachmaninoff - Greatest Hits
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 68788 Release Date: 04/15/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Leonard Pennario,  Kathryn Stott,  Byron Janis,  Alexis Weissenberg  ... 
    Conductor:  Arthur Fiedler,  Charles Munch,  Eugene Ormandy,  Leopold Stokowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Pops,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $8.99
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  • 21.
    Glenn Gould - Images
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 62588 Release Date: 08/20/1996   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach  ... 
    Performer:  Glenn Gould
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra
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  • 22.
    Josten: Jungle, Concerto Sacro, Symphony In F
    Label: Composers Recordings, Inc. (Cri)   Catalog: 597 Release Date: 04/20/1994   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Werner Josten
    Performer:  David Del Tredici
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  William Strickland
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 23.
    Basic 100 Vol 26 - Rodrigo And Villa-lobos / Bream
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 61723 Release Date: 10/12/1993   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Heitor Villa-Lobos,  Joaquin Rodrigo
    Performer:  Julian Bream,  Anna Moffo
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Leo Brouwer,  John Eliot Gardiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  RCA Victor Chamber Orchestra,  Monteverdi Orchestra
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  • 24.
    Glenn Gould Edition - Beethoven: The 5 Piano Concertos
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 52632 Release Date: 10/27/1992   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Glenn Gould
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Leonard Bernstein,  Vladimir Golschmann
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra,  Columbia Symphony Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic
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  • 25.
    Canteloube: Songs Of The Auvergne, Villa-lobos: Bachianas Brasileiras No 5 / Moffo, Stokowski
    Label: Rca Victor Gold Seal   Catalog: 7831 Release Date: 10/25/1990   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Heitor Villa-Lobos,  Joseph Canteloube
    Performer:  Anna Moffo
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Symphony Orchestra
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