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

Mendelssohn: Midsummer Night's Dream, Piano Concertos / Chailly
Release Date: 06/17/2014   Label: Decca  
Catalog: 002082502   Number of Discs: 1
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Mendelssohn, Adams: Violin Concertos / Jarvi, Hoopes,  Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra
Release Date: 05/27/2014   Label: Naive  
Catalog: 5368   Number of Discs: 1
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Mendelssohn: The Complete Solo Piano Music, Vol. 2 / Howard Shelley
Release Date: 07/08/2014   Label: Hyperion  
Catalog: 68059   Number of Discs: 1
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Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: Organ Works - Overture Paulus, Reformation Symphony, Variations Serieuses
Release Date: 06/24/2014   Label: Md&g (Dabringhaus & Grimm)  
Catalog: 61853   Number of Discs: 1
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Mendelssohn: 5 Symphonies, 7 Overtures / Abbado, London So
Release Date: 05/14/2002   Label: Deutsche Grammophon  
Catalog: 471467   Number of Discs: 4
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Work: Songs without words: Spring Song

Browse 51-75 of 98 Available Recordings
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  • 51.
    Liebestraum / Misha Goldstein
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 99382 Release Date: 04/04/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Robert Schumann,  Claude Debussy,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Misha Goldstein
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  • 52.
    The Complete Leopold Godowsky Vol. 2
    Label: Marston   Catalog: 52051 Release Date: 01/12/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Liszt,  Frédéric Chopin,  Camille Zeckwer,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Leopold Godowsky
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  • 53.
    50 Most Loved Piano Classics
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 34410 Release Date: 08/30/2005   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Maurice Ravel,  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Schubert  ... 
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  • 54.
    The Romantic Era - Beethoven, Etc / Horowitz, Reiner, Szell
    Label: Andromeda   Catalog: 5002 Release Date: 06/04/2005   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Carl Czerny,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Franz Schubert,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Horowitz
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner,  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic
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  • 55.
    Mendelssohn - Greatest Hits
    Label: Universal   Catalog: 000395402 Release Date: 02/08/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  András Schiff
    Conductor:  Bernard Haitink,  Sir Neville Marriner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra members,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields  ... 
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  • 56.
    Label: Slg Records   Catalog: 17417 Release Date: 07/27/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Pachelbel,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Gioachino Rossini,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
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  • 57.
    Mendelssohn: Piano Works
    Label: Accord   Catalog: 4761681 Release Date: 05/04/2004  
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Nikita Magaloff
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  • 58.
    Romantique - Chopin, Liszt, Mendelssohn, Schumann
    Label: Naive   Catalog: 4976 Release Date: 03/16/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Franz Liszt,  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Laurent Cabasso,  Karl Engel,  Danielle Laval,  Péter Nagy  ... 
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  • 59.
    Romantic Classics
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 24114 Release Date: 01/20/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sir William Walton,  Alexander Glazunov,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Earl Wild,  Israela Margalit,  Craig Ogden,  Luba Edlina  ... 
    Conductor:  Richard Hickox,  Neeme Järvi,  Jascha Horenstein,  Sachio Fujioka  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Scottish National Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 60.
    The Most Relaxing Piano Album In The World...ever!
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 67526 Release Date: 09/02/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Frédéric Chopin,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Gabriel Fauré  ... 
    Performer:  Andrei Gavrilov,  Peter Donohoe,  Moura Lympany,  Jean-Philippe Collard  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  Simon Rattle,  Alceo Galliera,  Jerzy Maksymiuk  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 61.
    More Of The Most Relaxing Classical Music In The Universe
    Label: Denon Records   Catalog: 17266 Release Date: 08/12/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Kosaku Yamada,  Gustav Holst,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Enrique Granados  ... 
    CD: $12.99
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  • 62.
    The Four Seasons - A Musical Calendar Of Favorite Classics
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 469376 Release Date: 01/13/2003   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Alexander Glazunov,  Astor Piazzolla,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Leroy Anderson  ... 
    Performer:  Patrick Gallois,  Göran Söllscher,  Dino Ciani,  Jörg Demus  ... 
    Conductor:  Ernest Ansermet,  Claudio Abbado,  Lorin Maazel,  Arthur Fiedler  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Boston Pops  ... 
    On sale! $41.98
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  • 63.
    The #1 Piano Album
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 472589 Release Date: 11/12/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Dmitri Shostakovich,  George Gershwin,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Béla Bartók  ... 
    Performer:  Olli Mustonen,  Werner Haas,  Martha Argerich,  Zoltán Kocsis  ... 
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  • 64.
    Deutsche Romantische Klavier Musik / Naoyuki Inoue
    Label: Camerata Records   Catalog: 606/07 Release Date: 09/24/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Johannes Brahms,  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Naoyuki Inoue
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  • 65.
    Mendelssohn: Cello Sonatas, Variations, Etc / Maisky, Tiempo
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 471565 Release Date: 08/13/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Sergio Tiempo,  Mischa Maisky
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  • 66.
    Masters Of The Bow - Violin / Accardo, Bell, Grumiaux, Et Al
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 472207 Release Date: 03/19/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Béla Bartók,  Grigoras Dinicu,  Enrique Granados,  Maurice Ravel  ... 
    Performer:  Charles Reiner,  Henryk Szeryng,  Jean-Claude Ambrosini,  Christian Ferras  ... 
    Conductor:  James Levine,  Sir Neville Marriner,  Claudio Abbado,  Zubin Mehta  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 67.
    Label: Spj Music   Catalog: 90603 Release Date: 02/26/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Anton Rubinstein,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Franz Schubert,  Claude Debussy  ... 
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  • 68.
    Night Music 7 - Classical Favourites For Relaxing
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8556607 Release Date: 09/01/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Franz Drdla,  Giuseppe Torelli,  Jules Massenet  ... 
    Performer:  Quido Hölbling,  Jozef Podhoransky,  Anna Hölbling,  Balázs Szokolay  ... 
    Conductor:  Josef Kopelman,  Petr Skvor,  Keith Clark,  Bohdan Warchal  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Capella Istropolitana,  Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra,  Moyzes String Quartet  ... 
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  • 69.
    Mendelssohn: 17 Lieder Ohne Worte;  Grieg / Walter Gieseking
    Label: Emi Classics Special Import   Catalog: 66775 Release Date: 04/03/2001   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
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  • 70.
    Lost Feuermann - The Japanese Recordings 1934 & 1936
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 1075 Release Date: 01/23/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Kosaku Yamada,  Giuseppe Valentini,  W.T. Wrighton  ... 
    Performer:  Emanuel Feuermann,  Fritz Kitzinger,  Wolfgang Rebner
    Conductor:  Frieder Weissmann
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin State Opera Orchestra
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  • 71.
    Piano Classics - Mendelssohn, Schumann, Brahms, Et Al
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 1739 Release Date: 01/09/2001   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Franz Liszt,  Johannes Brahms,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Marta Deyanova,  Mark Anderson,  Martin Jones,  Vlado Perlemuter  ... 
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  • 72.
    Mendelssohn: Italian Symphony, Violin Concerto, Octet, Etc
    Label: Dg Panorama   Catalog: 469157 Release Date: 10/17/2000   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Daniel Barenboim,  Anne-Sophie Mutter
    Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik,  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ens.,  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 73.
    Mendelssohn: Songs Without Words (Selection) / Péter Nagy
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8554055 Release Date: 10/06/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Péter Nagy
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  • 74.
    Mendelssohn: Works For Cello & Piano / Solow, Stevenson
    Label: Centaur Records   Catalog: 2343 Release Date: 08/12/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn
    Performer:  Doris Stevenson,  Jeffrey Solow
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  • 75.
    Piano For Relaxation - Brahms, Chopin, Fauré, Et Al / Oppitz
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 63674 Release Date: 05/16/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Maurice Ravel,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Gerhard Oppitz
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