Felix Mendelssohn

Biography

Born: Feb 3, 1809; Germany   Died: Nov 4, 1847; Germany   Period: Romantic
Far from the troubled, coarse libertine that has become an archetype of the Romantic composer, Felix Mendelssohn was something of an anomaly among his contemporaries. His own situation -- one largely of domestic tranquility and unhindered career fulfillment -- stands in stark contrast to the personal Sturm und Drang familiar to his peers. Mendelssohn was the only musical prodigy of the nineteenth century whose stature could rival that of Mozart. Read more Still, his parents resisted any entrepreneurial impulses and spared young Felix the strange, grueling lifestyle that was the lot of many child prodigies. He and his sister Fanny were given piano lessons, and he also studied violin, and both joined the Berlin Singakademie. Carl Friedrich Zelter, director of the Singakademie, became Mendelssohn's first composition instructor. Even in his youth, Mendelssohn moved with natural grace among the circles of influence in society, politics, literature, and art. Although he did spend some time at the University of Berlin, most of his education was received through friendships and travel. Mendelssohn's advocacy was the single most important factor in the revival of Bach's vocal music in the nineteenth century, most famously realized in the 1829 performance of the St. Matthew Passion at the Berlin Singakadamie. He did some touring as a pianist with Ignaz Moscheles, then took the position as music director in Düsseldorf from 1833 to 1835, which involved conducting both the choral and orchestral societies, preparing music for church services and later, becoming intendant for the new theatre. Tension with the theater owner caused him to resign some of his duties, and he began looking for a new post. In 1835, Mendelssohn became municipal music director in Leipzig, where he also would conduct the Gewandhaus Orchestra. He would raise the level of the still-thriving ensemble to a new standard of excellence. In 1838, he married Cécile Jeanrenaud, enjoying an idyllic marriage and family life that was quite unlike the stormy romantic entanglements which profoundly affected such composers as Berlioz, Chopin, and Liszt. He was in demand as a conductor, spent some time as royal composer and music director in Berlin, but remained committed to musical life in Leipzig. He was even able to establish a new conservatory in the city, which is still a well-respected institution.
Mendelssohn was a true Renaissance man. A talented visual artist, he was a refined connoisseur of literature and philosophy. While Mendelssohn's name rarely arises in discussions of the nineteenth century vanguard, the intrinsic importance of his music is undeniable. A distinct personality emerges at once in its exceptional formal sophistication, its singular melodic sense, and its colorful, masterful deployment of the instrumental forces at hand. A true apotheosis of life, Mendelssohn's music absolutely overflows with energy, ebullience, drama, and invention, as evidenced in his most enduring works: the incidental music to A Midsummer Night's Dream (1826-1842); the Hebrides Overture (1830); the Songs Without Words (1830-1845); the Symphonies No. 3 (1841-1842) and No. 4 (1833); and the Violin Concerto in E minor (1844). While the sunny disposition of so many of Mendelssohn's works has led some to view the composer as possessing great talent but little depth, his religious compositions -- particularly the great oratorios Paulus (1836) and Elijah (1846) -- reflect the complexity and deeply spiritual basis of his personality. Read less
Schumann & Mendelssohn: Piano Concertos / Fliter, Mendez, Scottish Chamber Orchestra
Release Date: 05/13/2016   Label: Linn Records  
Catalog: 555   Number of Discs: 1
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Mendelssohn in Birmingham Vol 4 / Pike, Gardner, City of Birmingham Symphony
Release Date: 01/29/2016   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 5161   Number of Discs: 1
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Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky: Violin Concertos / Steinbacher, Dutoit
Release Date: 06/09/2015   Label: Pentatone  
Catalog: 5186504   Number of Discs: 1
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Mendelssohn: Piano Concertos No 1 & 2 / Helmchen, Herreweghe, Royal Flemish Philharmonic
Release Date: 09/28/2010   Label: Pentatone  
Catalog: 5186366   Number of Discs: 1
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Mendelssohn in Birmingham Vol 2 / Gardner
Release Date: 09/30/2014   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 5139   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Wedding March

Browse 26-50 of 88 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Serenade: A Classical Wedding Collection
    Label: T Carter   Catalog: 3018128 Release Date: 03/18/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Johann Pachelbel,  Traditional,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  Catherine Marx,  Andrea Zonn,  David Francis
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  • 27.
    Peter Hurford - Organ Favorites
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 425013 Release Date: 01/29/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Charles-Marie Widor,  Henry Purcell,  Herbert Murrill  ... 
    Performer:  Peter Hurford
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  • 28.
    Mendelssohn: Symphony No 3, Hebrides / Ormandy, Philadelphia Orchestra
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 38112 Release Date: 01/18/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra
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  • 29.
    Best Romantic Classics 100
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 15490 Release Date: 01/15/2008   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Isaac Albeniz,  Lucio Quarantotto,  Pablo de Sarasate,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  Julian Byzantine,  Amy Nuttall,  Anne-Sophie Mutter,  Sharon Isbin  ... 
    Conductor:  Julian Kershaw,  Seiji Ozawa,  Lawrence Foster,  Sir John Barbirolli  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  French National Orchestra,  Lausanne Chamber Orchestra,  Rome Opera House Orchestra  ... 
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  • 30.
    Instant Classics - Musiques De Mariage
    Label: Naive   Catalog: 5107 Release Date: 11/20/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn,  Giovanni Battista Pergolesi,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Gabriel Fauré  ... 
    Performer:  Paul Badura-Skoda,  Anne Gastinel
    Conductor:  Emmanuel Krivine,  Jean-Claude Malgoire,  Christophe Coin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Toulouse National Chamber Orchestra,  Limoges Baroque Ensemble,  La Grande Ecurie et la Chambre du Roy
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  • 31.
    Romantic Journey / London Brass
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 46007 Release Date: 11/13/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Franz Schubert,  Felix Mendelssohn
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Brass
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  • 32.
    The Most Beautiful Classical Melodies
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 98293 Release Date: 10/17/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    CD: $17.99
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  • 33.
    Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto, A Midsummer Night's Dream
    Label: Rca Silver Seal   Catalog: 60910 Release Date: 07/12/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Eugene Fodor,  Helen Vanni,  Arlene Saunders
    Conductor:  Peter Maag,  Erich Leinsdorf
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Chorus
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  • 34.
    Toscanini Collection Vol 71 - La Scala Acoustic Recordings
    Label: Rca Victor Gold Seal   Catalog: 60315 Release Date: 05/29/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari,  Ildebrando Pizzetti,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra
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  • 35.
    Organ Bon Bons - Organ Works By Bach, Dvorak, Elgar, Widoe & Handel
    Label: Membran / Scandinavian Classics   Catalog: 220539 Release Date: 04/26/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Oskar Lindberg,  Charles-Marie Widor,  George Frideric Handel,  Antonín Dvorák  ... 
    Performer:  Ulrik Spang-Hanssen
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  • 36.
    Wedding Essentials / Canadian Brass
    Label: Opening Day   Catalog: 7334 Release Date: 04/10/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Engelbert Humperdinck,  John Stanley,  Sonny Kompanek,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Canadian Brass
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  • 37.
    An Introduction To Felix Mendelssohn
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 2025 Release Date: 09/19/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Howard Shelley
    Conductor:  Walter Weller,  Howard Shelley,  Sir Alexander Gibson,  Sir Charles Groves
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  London Mozart Players,  Royal Scottish National Orchestra  ... 
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  • 38.
    The Knot Collection Of Ceremony & Wedding Music
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 92826 Release Date: 05/02/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Stanley,  Henry Purcell,  George Frideric Handel,  Aaron Copland  ... 
    Performer:  Wynton Marsalis,  Edward Carroll,  William Neil,  Yo-Yo Ma  ... 
    Conductor:  Anthony Newman,  Edward Carroll,  Michael Tilson Thomas,  Richard Kapp  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  Chamber Soloists of Washington,  Utah Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 39.
    Schubert, Mendelssohn, Mahler / Schippers, Susskind
    Label: Vox Box   Catalog: 5138 Release Date: 03/22/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Franz Schubert
    Performer:  Lili Chookasian,  Richard Cassilly
    Conductor:  Walter Susskind,  Thomas Schippers
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
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  • 40.
    Label: Vox Classics   Catalog: 97013 Release Date: 02/28/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Wagner,  Franz Schubert,  Jules Massenet,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
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  • 41.
    Il Mito / Toscanini, Albanese, Peerce, Et Al
    Label: Fono Enterprise   Catalog: 1203 Release Date: 02/14/2006   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Georges Bizet,  Jules Massenet,  Gaetano Donizetti  ... 
    Performer:  Jan Peerce,  Licia Albanese,  Giulietta Simionato,  Frank Guarrera  ... 
    Conductor:  Arturo Toscanini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  NBC Symphony Orchestra,  NBC Symphony Chorus,  Milan Teatro alla Scala Orchestra  ... 
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  • 42.
    Perfect Autumn Wedding
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557978 Release Date: 01/17/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
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  • 43.
    Perfect Spring Wedding
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557976 Release Date: 01/17/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Georg Philipp Telemann,  Christoph W. Gluck,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
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  • 44.
    Perfect Summer Wedding
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557979 Release Date: 01/17/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Gottfried H. Stölzel,  George Frideric Handel,  Johann Adolf Hasse  ... 
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  • 45.
    Perfect Wedding
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557975 Release Date: 01/17/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gottfried H. Stölzel,  Johann Adolf Hasse,  George Frideric Handel,  Giovanni Gabrieli  ... 
    CD: $12.99
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  • 46.
    Perfect Winter Wedding
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557977 Release Date: 01/17/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Torelli,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Georg Christoph Wagenseil,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
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  • 47.
    Música Para Todos - 100 Minituras Clasicas Preferidas
    Label: Yoyo   Catalog: 59020 Release Date: 04/26/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Franz Liszt,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Johann Strauss Jr.  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Prague Festival Orchestra
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  • 48.
    Classical Music 101 - 101 Famous Classical Themes
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 63691 Release Date: 09/28/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Igor Stravinsky,  Georges Bizet,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  José Luis Garcia,  Placido Domingo,  Carlo Bergonzi,  Barry Douglas  ... 
    Conductor:  Arthur Fiedler,  Erich Leinsdorf,  Fritz Reiner,  Eugene Ormandy  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Pops,  Metropolitan Opera Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $6.99
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  • 49.
    Wedding Music - Bach, Mozart, Etc
    Label: Naive   Catalog: 4984 Release Date: 08/17/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Traditional,  Richard Wagner,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
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  • 50.
    The Essential Wedding Collection
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000233302 Release Date: 05/11/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Andrew Wright,  Francis Lai,  Bryan Adams,  Giorgio Moroder  ... 
    Performer:  Dame Kiri Te Kanawa,  Peter Hurford,  Richard Farnes,  Stephen Cleobury  ... 
    Conductor:  Nick Ingman,  Michael Kamen,  Julius Rudel,  Wyn Morris  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Prague Philharmonic Orchestra,  Seattle Symphony Orchestra,  Utah Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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