Erich Wolfgang Korngold

Biography

Born: 1897   Died: 1957   Period: 20th Century
Erich Wolfgang Korngold's career bridged astonishing gaps in history and music -- from the final years of Imperial Austria, when he was hailed as "a new Mozart," to Hollywood in the heyday of the studio system, to the darkened era of postwar Europe. In Vienna of the 1920s, his name evoked the best that engagingly melodic, tonal music had to offer in the concert hall or the opera house; in Hollywood he was synonymous with the swashbucklers of Read more Errol Flynn. Born in Brünn, in Moravia (now Brno, Czechoslovakia) he was the son of Julius Korngold, one of the most influential music critics in Vienna. Korngold was beating time with a spoon by the age of three, playing basic melodies at age 5, and composing at age 6. He was encouraged by Gustav Mahler to pursue his musical studies, and his teachers included Alexander Von Zemlinsky. He'd written a Piano Sonata in D minor and a ballet entitled The Snowman before he was 10, and at 13, he saw his second piano sonata premiered by Artur Schnabel. He wrote his first two operas, Der Ring des Polykrates and Violanta, in his teens, and in 1920, at 23, Korngold completed his most celebrated operatic work, Die tote Stadt; it was an immediate hit in Austria and Germany, and quickly entered the repertory of opera companies around the world.

The 1920s saw Korngold add theatrical music to his activities -- his adaptation of Johann Strauss' Eine Nacht in Venedig was a worldwide success, as was his Strauss pastiche, Waltzes in Vienna. In 1929, Korngold was commissioned by the producer Max Reinhardt to work on a new stage production of Die Fledermaus. Reinhardt was pleased with the results and impressed with Korngold's work; three years later, when Warner Bros. studios engaged Reinhardt to adapt his stage version of A Midsummer Night's Dream into a film, he engaged Korngold to arrange Felix Mendelssohn's music for the movie. The resulting film was a financial failure, but the studio was impressed with what Korngold had done with the music. He was offered a contract, which he accepted after some slight hesitation.

His first film score, for Captain Blood (1935), delighted both the studio's executives and millions of filmgoers -- Korngold's music added a richness to the sweeping tale of heroism and triumph over injustice that startled viewers with its inventiveness, adding an extra dimension to the drama, and excitement and beauty of the movie. Over the next two years, Korngold turned in dazzling musical scores for Anthony Adverse (1936), Green Pastures (1936), and The Prince and the Pauper (1937).

In late 1937, he returned to Vienna in hope of premiering a new operatic work, but the growing Nazi influence over politics and art made it impossible for Korngold and his family (all of whom were Jewish) to remain. In early 1938, he accepted a new contract offer from Warner Bros. and got himself and his family to America just before Germany annexed Austria. Korngold spent the next nine years in Hollywood among the movie colony's artistic elite, able to pick and choose his films and always doing superb work. Korngold turned in a dozen memorable scores that defined elegance in film music -- from costumed adventures like The Sea Hawk (1940) to serious drama such as Kings Row (1942).

Following the end of World War II, he returned to Austria and got a harsh reception from a populace resentful of his years in Hollywood, and derision from critics over his melodic, tonal music. Korngold lived his final years comfortably in California, in near complete artistic eclipse. Read less
Korngold: The Piano Music / Martin Jones
Release Date: 03/23/2004   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 5705   Number of Discs: 4
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Korngold, Reznicek: String Quartets / Franz Schubert Quartet
Release Date: 11/18/1997   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 5506   Number of Discs: 1
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Browse 251-275 of 316 Available Recordings
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  • 251.
    Joan Hammond By Request - Charpentier, Massenet, Et Al
    Label: Testament   Catalog: 1160 Release Date: 01/01/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustave Charpentier,  Jules Massenet,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Amilcare Ponchielli  ... 
    Performer:  Joan Hammond
    Conductor:  Warwick Braithwaite,  Stanford Robinson,  Walter Susskind,  Glauco Curiel  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hallé Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 252.
    An American Soprano / Ellen Faull
    Label: Vai Audio   Catalog: 1173 Release Date: 12/15/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Umberto Giordano,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Ellen Faull
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  • 253.
    Korngold: Die Kathrin / Brabbins, Bbc Concert Orchestra
    Label: Cpo   Catalog: 999602 Release Date: 10/27/1998   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Melanie Armistead,  Richard Lloyd Morgan,  David Rendall,  Anthony Smith  ... 
    Conductor:  Martyn Brabbins
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Concert Orchestra,  BBC Singers
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  • 254.
    Janacek: Glagolitic Mass;  Korngold, Zemlinsky / Chailly
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 460213 Release Date: 10/20/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander von Zemlinsky,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Leos Janácek
    Performer:  Eva Urbanová,  Thomas Trotter,  Richard Novák,  Marta Benacková  ... 
    Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Slovak Philharmonic Chorus Bratislava
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  • 255.
    German Romantic Opera / Heppner, Runnicles, North German RSO
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 63239 Release Date: 10/13/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Carl Maria von Weber,  Richard Wagner,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Ben Heppner
    Conductor:  Donald Runnicles,  Sir Colin Davis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  North German Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 256.
    Siegfried Jerusalem - Great Tenor Arias
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 60526 Release Date: 09/22/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Jaromir Weinberger,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Siegfried Jerusalem,  Lucia Popp,  Hermann Prey
    Conductor:  Gabriel Chmura,  Josef Schmidhuber,  Marek Janowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Bavarian Radio Chorus
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  • 257.
    Bo Skovhus - Arias /Conlon, English National Opera Orchestra
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 60035 Release Date: 09/15/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Richard Wagner,  Benjamin Britten,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Boje Skovhus
    Conductor:  James Conlon
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English National Opera Orchestra
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  • 258.
    Four Famous Baritones Of The Past
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89974 Release Date: 07/04/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Gioachino Rossini,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Ruggero Leoncavallo  ... 
    Performer:  Carlo Drago Hrzic,  Umberto Urbano,  Alexander Svéd,  Celestino Sarobe  ... 
    Conductor:  Manfred Gurlitt,  Clemens Krauss,  Julius Prüwer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin State Opera Orchestra
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  • 259.
    Korngold: The Snowman Act I, Etc / Bamert, Bbc Philharmonic
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 9631 Release Date: 06/16/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Conductor:  Matthias Bamert
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 260.
    Korngold: Orchestral Works Vol 1-4 / Werner A. Albert, Et Al
    Label: Cpo   Catalog: 999150 Release Date: 06/02/1998   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Christian Brüning,  Julius Berger,  Steven De Groote,  Lajos Farkas
    Conductor:  Werner Andreas Albert
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Northwest German Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 261.
    Korngold, Schmidt - Music For Strings & Piano Left Hand / Fleisher
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 48253 Release Date: 05/19/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Franz Schmidt
    Performer:  Leon Fleisher,  Yo-Yo Ma,  Jaime Laredo,  Joseph Silverstein  ... 
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  • 262.
    Korngold: The Sea Hawk, Symphony In F# / Depreist, Oregon So
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3234 Release Date: 05/19/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Conductor:  James DePreist
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Oregon Symphony Orchestra
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  • 263.
    Operatic Arias (1911-1949)
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7864 Release Date: 05/19/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ruggero Leoncavallo,  Vincenzo Bellini,  Traditional,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  Titta Ruffo,  Maria Callas,  Kathleen Ferrier,  Lauritz Melchior  ... 
    Conductor:  Antonio Sabino,  Eugene Ormandy,  Gustav Cloëz,  Angelo Albergoni  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Berlin State Opera Orchestra
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  • 264.
    The Artist's Album / Anne Sofie Von Otter
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 457688 Release Date: 04/14/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Gustav Mahler,  Christoph W. Gluck  ... 
    Performer:  Anne Sofie von Otter,  Mirella Freni,  Paul Goodwin,  Anthony Rolfe Johnson  ... 
    Conductor:  James Levine,  John Eliot Gardiner,  Trevor Pinnock,  Marc Minkowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Frankfurt Opera House and Museum Orchestra,  Dresden Staatskapelle,  North German Radio Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 265.
    Renée Fleming - The Beautiful Voice
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 458858 Release Date: 02/10/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Joseph Canteloube,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Antonín Dvorák,  José Maria Cano  ... 
    Performer:  Renée Fleming,  Clive Greensmith,  Paul Willey,  Osian Ellis  ... 
    Conductor:  Jeffrey Tate
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  London Voices
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  • 266.
    The Romantic Piano Concerto Vol 18 - Korngold, Marx /Hamelin
    Label: Hyperion   Catalog: 66990 Release Date: 02/10/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Joseph Marx,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Marc-André Hamelin
    Conductor:  Osmo Vänskä
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
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  • 267.
    Korngold, Reznicek: String Quartets / Franz Schubert Quartet
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 5506 Release Date: 11/18/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  E. Nikolaus von Reznicek
    Performer:  Helge Rosenkranz,  Florian Zwiauer,  Attila Székely,  Hartmut Pascher
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Franz Schubert String Quartet
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  • 268.
    Four Famous German Baritones
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 89978 Release Date: 09/16/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Gioachino Rossini,  Albert Lortzing,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold  ... 
    Performer:  Gerhard Hüsch,  Hans Wocke,  Karl Hammes,  Herbert Janssen  ... 
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  • 269.
    Tune Your Brain - Music To Manage Your Mind, Body And Mood
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 457356 Release Date: 09/16/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Georges Bizet,  Richard Wagner,  Franz Schubert,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Cheryl Studer,  Gil Shaham,  Trevor Pinnock,  Géza Anda  ... 
    Conductor:  Myung-Whun Chung,  James Levine,  Ion Marin,  Pierre Boulez  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bastille Opera Orchestra,  Metropolitan Opera Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 270.
    Korngold, Goldmark: Violin Concertos / Vera Tsu, Yu Long
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8553579 Release Date: 08/05/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Karl Goldmark,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Vera Tsu
    Conductor:  Long Yu
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Razumovsky Sinfonia
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  • 271.
    Korngold: Die Tote Stadt / Segerstam, Et Al
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8660060-61 Release Date: 08/05/1997   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Katarina Dalayman,  Anders Bergstrom,  Ingrid Tobiasson,  Hilde Leidland  ... 
    Conductor:  Leif Segerstam
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Stockholm Opera Orchestra,  Tomtberga School Children's Choir,  Royal Stockholm Opera Chorus
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  • 272.
    Korngold: Symphony, Much Ado About Nothing / Previn, LSO
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 453436 Release Date: 07/15/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Conductor:  André Previn
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 273.
    Mahler, Korngold: Lieder / Kirchschlager, Deutsch
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 68344 Release Date: 07/01/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Alma Mahler
    Performer:  Angelika Kirchschlager,  Helmut Deutsch
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  • 274.
    The Heifetz Collection Vol 21 - Korngold, Rozsa, Waxman
    Label: Rca Victor Gold Seal   Catalog: 61752 Release Date: 06/17/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Waxman,  Miklós Rózsa,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Jascha Heifetz,  Gregor Piatigorsky
    Conductor:  Donald Voorhees,  Walter Hendl,  Alfred Wallenstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra,  Dallas Symphony Orchestra,  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 275.
    The Music Survives - An Introduction To Entartete Musik
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 452664 Release Date: 06/10/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erwin Schulhoff,  Ernst Krenek,  Pavel Haas,  Berthold Goldschmidt  ... 
    Performer:  Krister St. Hill,  Heinz Kruse,  Michael Kraus,  Martin Petzold  ... 
    Conductor:  John Mauceri,  Lothar Zagrosek,  Berthold Goldschmidt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra,  Hawthorne String Quartet
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