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
Erich Wolfgang Korngold: Sextet Op. 10; Suite Op. 23
Release Date: 01/28/2014   Label: Cpo  
Catalog: 777600   Number of Discs: 1
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Arensky, Korngold / Escher Trio
Release Date: 07/11/2006   Label: Challenge  
Catalog: 72407   Number of Discs: 1
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Tchaikovsky, Korngold: Concertos; Doubles Jeux / 	Laurent Korcia
Release Date: 02/25/2014   Label: Naive  
Catalog: 40040   Number of Discs: 2
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Browse 26-50 of 301 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    The Silver Violin / Nicola Benedetti
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001760902 Release Date: 02/19/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Gustav Mahler,  John Williams,  Howard Shore  ... 
    Performer:  Nicola Benedetti,  Alexei Grynyuk,  Leonard Elschenbroich,  Tom Dunn  ... 
    Conductor:  Kirill Karabits
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
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  • 27.
    Joseph Marx: Rhapsodie; Erich Wolfgang Korngold: Suite
    Label: Urlicht   Catalog: 5996 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Joseph Marx,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Piano Quartet
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  • 28.
    Korngold: Werke Fur Violine & Klavier; Streichsextett
    Label: Phil.harmonie   Catalog: 6013 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Xuesu Liu,  Daniel Gaede
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonisches Streichsextett
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  • 29.
    Singers Of The Century - 40 Greats Of  The 20th Century
    Label: Regis   Catalog: 2078 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Giacomo Puccini,  Pietro Mascagni,  Umberto Giordano  ... 
    Performer:  Ettore Bastianini,  Giuseppe Taddei,  Richard Tucker,  Mario Del Monaco  ... 
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  • 30.
    Violin Encores / Jascha Heifetz
    Label: Regis   Catalog: 1296 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Edouard Lalo,  George Gershwin,  Traditional  ... 
    Performer:  Jascha Heifetz,  Emanuel Bay,  Milton Kaye
    Conductor:  Alfred Wallenstein,  William Steinberg
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra,  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra
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  • 31.
    Essential Opera Divas
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 234522 Release Date: 01/22/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Christoph W. Gluck,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  Arleen Augér,  Patrizia Ciofi,  Véronique Gens,  Jessye Norman  ... 
    Conductor:  Richard Hickox,  Fabio Biondi,  Christophe Rousset,  Klaus Tennstedt  ... 
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  • 32.
    Label: Somerset Entertainment   Catalog: 51767 Release Date: 01/01/2013   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  George Frideric Handel,  Erik Satie  ... 
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  • 33.
    A Time For Us / Dubeau, La Pieta
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 28736 Release Date: 11/27/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Nino Rota,  John Williams,  Ennio Morricone,  John Barry  ... 
    Performer:  Angčle Dubeau
    Conductor:  Angčle Dubeau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  La Pieta
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  • 34.
    Anniversary Series - Art Song Collection
    Label: Signum U.k.   Catalog: 303 Release Date: 11/27/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Francis Poulenc,  Alec Roth  ... 
    Performer:  Simon Crawford-Phillips,  Andrew Kennedy,  Roderick Williams,  Iain Burnside  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dante Quartet
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  • 35.
    Souvenir D'amerique / Friedemann Eichhorn, Andreas Frolich
    Label: Oehms   Catalog: 861 Release Date: 11/13/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Gershwin,  William Kroll,  Stephen Foster,  Henri Vieuxtemps  ... 
    Performer:  Friedemann Eichhorn,  Andreas Frolich
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  • 36.
    Korngold: Die Tote Stadt / Hollreiser, King, Armstrong
    Label: Arthaus Musik   Catalog: 101656 Release Date: 10/30/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Conductor:  Heinrich Hollreiser
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Opera Orchestra
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  • 37.
    Erich Wolfgang Korngold: String Sextet In D Major, Op. 10; Piano Quintet In E Major, Op. 15
    Label: Tacet   Catalog: 198 Release Date: 09/25/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Thomas Hell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Camerata Freden
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  • 38.
    Wolf, Korngold, Mahler & Schumann: Lieder / Roderick Williams, Helmut Deutsch
    Label: Wigmore Hall Live   Catalog: 55 Release Date: 09/25/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler,  Hugo Wolf,  Robert Schumann,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Roderick Williams,  Helmut Deutsch
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  • 39.
    The Art of Renee Fleming
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001717202 Release Date: 09/11/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Vincenzo Bellini,  Alfredo Catalani,  Giacomo Puccini  ... 
    Performer:  Renée Fleming,  Bryn Terfel,  Steve Pearce,  Ralph Salmins  ... 
    Conductor:  Andreas Delfs,  Sir Charles Mackerras,  Daniel Barenboim,  Paul Gemignani  ... 
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  • 40.
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4805770 Release Date: 09/04/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Richard Wagner,  Robert Schumann,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold  ... 
    Performer:  Matthias Goerne,  Dorothea Röschmann
    Conductor:  Manfred Honeck
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Swedish Radio Chorus members,  Adolf Frederik Childrens Choir
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  • 41.
    Voices Of German Opera
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 40497 Release Date: 07/31/2012   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Carl Maria von Weber,  Heinrich Marschner  ... 
    Performer:  Natalie Dessay,  Edda Moser,  Kurt Moll,  Walter Berry  ... 
    Conductor:  Louis Langrée,  Wolfgang Sawallisch,  Berislav Klobucar,  Rudolf Moralt  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment,  Bavarian State Opera Orchestra,  Berlin Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 42.
    Time Traveller - Weimar Germany
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 79015 Release Date: 04/10/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Paul Hindemith,  Kurt Weill,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Arnold Schoenberg  ... 
    Performer:  Robyn [Mezzo soprano] Archer,  Lars Vogt,  Barbara Hendricks
    Conductor:  Claudio Abbado,  Dominic Muldowney,  Otto Klemperer,  Franz Welser-Möst  ... 
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  • 43.
    Korngold: Das Wunder der Heliane / Tomowa-Sintow, Gedda, Mauceri
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001652302 Release Date: 03/13/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Nicolai Gedda,  Hartmut Welker,  Martin Petzold,  Anna Tomowa-Sintow  ... 
    Conductor:  John Mauceri
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Berlin Radio Chorus
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  • 44.
    The Very Best Of Kiri Te Kanawa
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog:  6790072 Release Date: 03/13/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini,  Francesco Cilča,  Umberto Giordano,  Giuseppe Verdi  ... 
    Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa,  Don Lusher,  Jim Hughes,  Laurie Holloway  ... 
    Conductor:  Myung-Whun Chung,  Jeffrey Tate,  Julius Rudel,  Bernard Haitink  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Abbey Road Ensemble,  Members of the National Philharmonic Orchestra Lon
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  • 45.
    A Time For Us / Dubeau, La Pieta [Bilingual]
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 28733 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Nino Rota,  John Williams,  Ennio Morricone,  John Barry  ... 
    Performer:  Angčle Dubeau
    Conductor:  Angčle Dubeau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  La Pieta
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  • 46.
    Barber, Korngold: Violin Concertos / Alexander Gilman
    Label: Oehms   Catalog: 799 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Samuel Barber,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Franz Waxman,  John Williams
    Performer:  Alexander Gilman
    Conductor:  Perry So
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Capetown Orchestra
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  • 47.
    Korngold: Piano Quintet & String Sextet / Stumm, LaFollette, Stott, Doric String Quartet
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 10707 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Jennifer Stumm,  Bartholomew Lafollette,  Kathryn Stott
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Doric String Quartet
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  • 48.
    The Golden Age Of Hollywood Vol 2 / Serebrier, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
    Label: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra   Catalog: 22 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bernard Herrmann,  Max Steiner,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Elmer Bernstein  ... 
    Performer:  Clio Gould,  Jamie Talbot
    Conductor:  José Serebrier
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 49.
    Rudolf Ganz Am Klavier Und Als Dirigent
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 2377 Release Date: 02/14/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Liszt,  Adolf Jensen,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  Rudolf Ganz
    Conductor:  Rudolf Ganz
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  • 50.
    Korngold: Die Stumme Serenade
    Label: Cpo   Catalog: 777485 Release Date: 01/31/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erich Wolfgang Korngold
    Performer:  Sebastian Reich,  Lena Laferi,  Birger Radde,  Anna-Lucia Leone  ... 
    Conductor:  Klaus Simon
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Holst Sinfonietta,  Young Opera Company Freiburg
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