Casals Festivals At Prades - 1953-62

Release Date: 9/5/2006
Catalog Number: MA CD-1187(12)
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Number of Discs: 12

Physical Format:

CD
Low Stock
$119.99
Notes and Editorial Reviews


CASALS FESTIVALS AT PRADES , Volume 2 Various soloists and ensembles MUSIC & ARTS 1187, mono (12 CDs: 815:23)


Music by BACH, BEETHOVEN, BRAHMS, CASALS, MENDELSSOHN, MOZART, SCHUBERT, SCHUMANN


What follows is an overview of a remarkable set having unquestionable historical and musical worth. Not only does it encompass first-rate performances, drawn from the years 1953–59, but it also deepens the profile of many of the artists involved.


In some respects the third CD of this release is particularly valuable. Devoted exclusively to Rudolf Serkin, it commands interest on two counts. On the one hand it enriches his discography with a superb performance of Schumann’s Symphonic Etudes . On the other, it complements the pianist’s studio efforts with readings of Beethoven’s sonatas, ops. 109 and 110. The disc is completed with Bach’s Italian Concerto , in a more ruminative performance than one Serkin recorded at Prades for Columbia. Similarly, this 1953 Casals-conducted concert account of Mozart’s Sinfonia concertante, K 364, if similar in its broad pacing to his studio effort of a year earlier (with Stern and Primrose) gains from the superb brother/sister collaboration of Joseph and Lillian Fuchs. Especially welcome is the broad representation given to Mieczyslaw Horszowski, a superb pianist who never gained the representation in the studio that his artistry deserved. Here he is featured on one disc in Beethoven’s first two piano concertos, with Casals conducting, and on another CD devoted to solo works by three composers: Bach (three excerpts from Book II of the WTC) , Mozart (aptly intense accounts of the C-Minor Fantasy, K 475, and Sonata, K 457), and a superbly sculpted Beethoven, op 111. The two Beethoven piano concertos feature some unusual tempos—the first movement of No.1 rather fleet, that of No. 2 uncommonly broad, yet both are interesting in their unorthodox but nonetheless musical projection. And if you think Wilhelm Kempff was too reserved a pianist, try his collaboration here with Christian Ferras in Beethoven’s “Kreutzer” Sonata, a tightly controlled yet animated and vital account.


Other items include Bach’s partitas and sonatas for solo violin, with Yehudi Menuhin proving more convincing in this repertoire than he did in the studio, Casals in Bach’s C-Major and C-Minor unaccompanied suites, and conducting the Third and Fourth Brandenburg Concertos and the Fourth Symphony of Beethoven. There are also excerpts from Bach Cantatas and a complete Cantata BWV 202 featuring Maria Stader. Chamber performances include Mendelssohn’s C-Minor Trio with Casals, Kempff, and Ferras, the Mozart G-Minor Quintet with the Vègh Quartet, and Schubert Lieder featuring Victoria de Los Angeles accompanied by Horszowski.


If I have failed to cite every item in this set or comment more fully on some of those I have mentioned, it is only because to do so would require far too much space for a set that—important as it surely is—may not generate the broad appeal that other releases command. But for those fascinated by the history of performance practices or having an interest in the artists involved, this release will prove touching and revealing. It is certainly a tribute to a group of superb musicians who collaborated with Casals in a series of summer festivals of major significance. Hats off to Music & Arts for perpetuating them. Harris Goldsmith’s exceptionally informative annotations are a welcome bonus. Throughout, the mono sound, if variable, is light years ahead of what the Columbia engineers produced at Prades in 1950. And as a practical matter, it should be noted that the 12 discs in this set (12 for the price of 8) come neatly packaged in individual sleeves housed in an inch-wide sturdy box.


FANFARE: Mortimer H. Frank
Works on This Recording
1. Sonata for Violin solo no 2 in A minor, BWV 1003 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Yehudi Menuhin (Violin)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1720 ; Cöthen, Germany
2. Sonata for Violin solo no 3 in C major, BWV 1005 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Yehudi Menuhin (Violin)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1720 ; Cöthen, Germany
3. Italian Concerto, BWV 971 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Rudolf Serkin (Piano)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1735 ; Leipzig, Germany
4. Sonata for Piano no 30 in E major, Op. 109 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Rudolf Serkin (Piano)
Period: Classical
Written: 1820 ; Vienna, Austria
5. Symphonic Etudes for Piano, Op. 13 by Robert Schumann
Performer: Rudolf Serkin (Piano)
Period: Romantic
Written: 1837/1852 ; Germany
6. Sonata for Piano no 31 in A flat major, Op. 110 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Wilhelm Kempff (Piano)
Period: Classical
Written: 1821-1822 ; Vienna, Austria
7. Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 2: Prelude and Fugue no 14 in F sharp minor, BWV 883 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1738-1742 ; Leipzig, Germany
8. Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 2: Prelude and Fugue no 15 in G major, BWV 884 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1738-1742 ; Leipzig, Germany
9. Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 2: Prelude and Fugue no 24 in B minor, BWV 893 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1738-1742 ; Leipzig, Germany
10. Fantasia for Piano in C minor, K 396 (385f) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Classical
Written: 1782 ; Vienna, Austria
11. Sonata for Piano no 14 in C minor, K 457 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Classical
Written: 1784 ; Vienna, Austria
12. Sonata for Piano no 32 in C minor, Op. 111 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Classical
Written: 1821-1822 ; Vienna, Austria
13. Kreisleriana, Op. 16 by Robert Schumann
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Romantic
Written: 1838 ; Germany
14. Fantasies (7) for Piano, Op. 116 by Johannes Brahms
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Romantic
Written: 1892 ; Austria
15. Sonata for Violin and Piano in B flat major, K 454 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano), Yehudi Menuhin (Violin)
Period: Classical
Written: 1784 ; Vienna, Austria
16. El cant del ocells by Pablo Casals
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano), Yehudi Menuhin (Violin), Pablo Casals (Cello)
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1972 ;
17. Lied(er) by Franz Schubert
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano), Victoria de los Angeles (Soprano)
Period: Romantic
18. Sonata for Cello and Piano no 1 in E minor, Op. 38 by Johannes Brahms
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano), Pablo Casals (Cello)
Period: Romantic
Written: 1862-1865 ; Austria
19. Divertimento for 2 Clarinets, 2 Horns and Strings no 1 in E flat major, K 113 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Joseph Fuchs (Violin), Lillian Fuchs (Viola), Paul Tortelier (Cello)
Period: Classical
Written: 1771 ; Milan, Italy
20. Trio for Piano and Strings no 2 in C minor, Op. 66 by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer: Wilhelm Kempff (Piano), Christian Ferras (Violin), Pablo Casals (Cello)
Period: Romantic
Written: 1845 ; Germany
21. Trio for Piano and Strings no 2 in C minor, Op. 66 by Felix Mendelssohn
Performer: Wilhelm Kempff (Piano), Christian Ferras (Violin), Pablo Casals (Cello)
Period: Romantic
Written: 1845 ; Germany
22. Quintet for 2 Violins, 2 Violas and Cello no 4 in G minor, K 516 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Ernst Wallfisch (Viola), Sandor Zöldy (Violin), Sandor Végh (Violin), Georges Janzer (Viola), Paul Szabo (Cello)
Orchestra/Ensemble: Végh String Quartet
Period: Classical
Written: 1787 ; Vienna, Austria
23. Quartet for Strings no 1 in C minor, Op. 51 no 1 by Johannes Brahms
Performer: Sandor Végh (Violin), Sandor Zöldy (Violin), Georges Janzer (Viola), Paul Szabo (Cello)
Orchestra/Ensemble: Végh String Quartet
Period: Romantic
Written: 1865-1873 ; Austria
24. Weichet nur, betrübte Schatten, BWV 202 "Wedding Cantata" by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Maria Stader (Soprano)
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: Prades Festival Orchestra
Period: Baroque
Written: circa 1718-1723 ; Cöthen, Germany
25. Brandenburg Concerto no 4 in G major, BWV 1049 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: Prades Festival Orchestra
Period: Baroque
Written: circa 1720 ; ?Cöthen, Germany
26. Ch'io mi scordi di te...Non temer, amato bene, K 505 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Victoria de los Angeles (Soprano)
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: London Collegium Musicum
Period: Classical
Written: 1786 ; Vienna, Austria
27. Divertimento in D major by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Orchestra/Ensemble: Sándor Végh Chamber Orchestra
Period: Classical
28. Concerto for Piano no 1 in C major, Op. 15 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: Prades Festival Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1795 ; Vienna, Austria
29. Concerto for Piano no 2 in B flat major, Op. 19 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: Prades Festival Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1793/1798 ; Vienna, Austria
30. Sinfonia concertante for Violin and Viola in E flat major, K 364 (320d) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Joseph Fuchs (Violin), Lillian Fuchs (Viola)
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: Prades Festival Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1779 ; Salzburg, Austria
31. Sinfonia concertante for Violin and Viola in E flat major, K 364 (320d) by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Joseph Fuchs (Violin), Lillian Fuchs (Viola)
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: Prades Festival Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1779 ; Salzburg, Austria
32. Symphony no 4 in B flat major, Op. 60 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: London Collegium Musicum
Period: Classical
Written: 1806 ; Vienna, Austria
33. Sonata for Violin and Piano no 9 in A major, Op. 47 "Kreutzer" by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Christian Ferras (Violin), Mieczyslaw Horszowski (Piano)
Period: Classical
Written: 1802-1803 ; Vienna, Austria
34. Partita for Violin solo no 2 in D minor, BWV 1004 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Yehudi Menuhin (Violin)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1720 ; Cöthen, Germany
35. Partita for Violin solo no 3 in E major, BWV 1006 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Yehudi Menuhin (Violin)
Period: Baroque
Written: 1720 ; Cöthen, Germany
36. Suite for Cello solo no 3 in C major, BWV 1009 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Pablo Casals (Cello)
Period: Baroque
Written: circa 1720 ; Cöthen, Germany
37. Suite for Cello solo no 5 in C minor, BWV 1011 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Pablo Casals (Cello)
Period: Baroque
Written: circa 1720 ; Cöthen, Germany
38. Brandenburg Concerto no 3 in G major, BWV 1048 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor: Pablo Casals
Orchestra/Ensemble: Prades Festival Orchestra
Period: Baroque
Written: 1711-1713 ; ?Weimar, Germany
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