George Szell conducts Concertos & Symphonies

Release Date: 8/23/2019
Label: Profil
Catalog Number: PH19018
Conductor: George Szell
Number of Discs: 10

Physical Format:

CD
In Stock
$41.99
Notes and Editorial Reviews
George Szell was both feared for his relentless, intense rehearsals and celebrated for their artistic results. He turned the Cleveland Orchestra, of which he was Music Director from 1946 to 1970, into one of the world's most technically brilliant orchestras. There are also impressive recordings which document his work with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and the Metropolitan Opera (1942 – 1946). His path to becoming one of the world's best conductors was meticulously prepared. Szell studied in Vienna, where he had given his debut concert at the age of 10, and in Leipzig, where his teachers included Max Reger. After conducting the Berliner Philharmoniker playing one of his own compositions aged 16, Richard Strauss hired Szell as piano accompanist at the Hofoper in Berlin, where he remained between 1914 and 1917. He then went on to succeed Otto Klemperer at the Strasbourg Opera House, from where he moved to the New German Theatre in Prague, then to Darmstadt and Düsseldorf, before finally becoming Principal Conductor of the Berlin State Opera (1924 – 1929), Director of the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra and teacher at the Berlin Academy of Music (1927 – 1930). He returned to Prague between 1930 and 1936, this time as General Music Director, during which time he also conducted the Scottish National Orchestra and the Residentie Orkest in The Hague (1937 – 1939). When World War II broke out just after he had finished a tour of Australia, George Szell was able to emigrate to New York, and it was there that Toscanini invited him to conduct the NBC Symphony Orchestra. Szell also conducted premieres of works by Barber, Blacher, von Einem and Walton. He teamed up with the young pianist Leon Fleischer for the big Beethoven and Brahms concertos, and the two produced recordings which still serve as a benchmark today.

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REVIEW:

Generally good sound graces much of this collection. Chosen selections include recordings with the Concertgebouw Orchestra, most memorably music for A Midsummer Night’s Dream (with a fabulous Scherzo) and Rosamunde, the LPO and Sir Clifford Curzon in a fine Emperor Concerto, and, inevitably, the Cleveland Orchestra. Interestingly, Profil opts for Szell’s first account of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No 24 with Robert Casadesus, where the combination of pianistic poise and strongarm conducting makes a big impression. Dvorák’s Eighth Symphony is entrusted to the Concertgebouw Orchestra (Decca, mono); it’s good, but nowhere near as good as the Cleveland Symphony From the New World that follows it, where the Largo is both sculpted and expressive. And those string choirs: utter perfection! Schumann’s First and Second Symphonies are included, the former in stereo, the latter in mono, and there are crisply articulated concerto performances with Leon Fleisher.

– Gramophone
Works on This Recording
1. Midsummer Night's Dream Overture, in E major Op. 21 by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1826 ; Germany
2. Midsummer Night's Dream, Op. 61: Excerpt(s) by Felix Mendelssohn
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1842 ; Germany
3. Die Zauberharfe, D 644: Overture by Franz Schubert
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1820 ; Vienna, Austria
4. Rosamunde, D 797: 9. Ballet: Andantino by Franz Schubert
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1823 ; Germany
5. Rosamunde, D 797: 5. Entr'acte 3: Andantino by Franz Schubert
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1823 ; Germany
6. Rosamunde, D. 797: Incidental Music, Entr'acte No. 1 by Franz Schubert
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1823 ; Germany
7. Konzertstück for Piano and Orchestra in F minor, Op. 79 by Carl Maria von Weber
Performer: Robert Casadesus (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1821 ; Dresden, Germany
8. Symphony no 88 in G major, H 1 no 88 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: circa 1787 ; Eszterhazá, Hungary
9. Symphony no 97 in C major, H 1 no 97 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1792 ; London, England
10. Symphony no 104 in D major, H 1 no 104 "London" by Franz Joseph Haydn
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1795 ; London, England
11. Divertimento for Flute, Oboe, Bassoon, 4 Horns and Strings no 2 in D major, K 131 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1772 ; Salzburg, Austria
12. Concerto for Piano no 26 in D major, K 537 "Coronation" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Robert Casadesus (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1788 ; Vienna, Austria
13. Symphony no 33 in B flat major, K 319 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1779 ; Salzburg, Austria
14. Concerto for Piano no 25 in C major, K 503 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Leon Fleisher (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1786 ; Vienna, Austria
15. Variations for Cello and Orchestra on a Rococo theme, Op. 33 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer: Leonard Rose (Cello)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
Period: Romantic
Written: 1876 ; Russia
16. Concerto for Violin no 1 in B flat major, K 207 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Isaac Stern (Violin)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra members
Period: Classical
Written: 1775 ; Salzburg, Austria
17. Concerto for Violin no 2 in D major, K 211 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Isaac Stern (Violin)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra members
Period: Classical
Written: 1775 ; Salzburg, Austria
18. Concerto for Piano no 24 in C minor, K 491 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performer: Robert Casadesus (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1786 ; Vienna, Austria
19. Concerto for Piano no 4 in G major, Op. 58 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Leon Fleisher (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1806 ; Vienna, Austria
20. Concerto for Piano no 5 in E flat major, Op. 73 "Emperor" by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer: Clifford Curzon (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical
Written: 1809 ; Vienna, Austria
21. Symphony no 3 in F major, Op. 90 by Johannes Brahms
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1883 ; Austria
22. Concerto for Piano no 1 in D minor, Op. 15 by Johannes Brahms
Performer: Leon Fleisher (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1854-1858 ; Germany
23. Symphony no 1 in B flat major, Op. 38 "Spring" by Robert Schumann
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1841 ; Germany
24. Symphony no 2 in C major, Op. 61 by Robert Schumann
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1845-1846 ; Germany
25. Concerto for Piano in A minor, Op. 54 by Robert Schumann
Performer: Leon Fleisher (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1841-1845 ; Germany
26. Concerto for Piano in A minor, Op. 16 by Edvard Grieg
Performer: Leon Fleisher (Piano)
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1868/1907 ; Norway
27. Symphony no 9 in E minor, Op. 95/B 178 "From the New World" by Antonín Dvorák
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1893 ; USA
28. Symphony no 8 in G major, Op. 88/B 163 by Antonín Dvorák
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1889 ; Bohemia
29. Symphony no 9 in E minor, Op. 95/B 178 "From the New World" by Antonín Dvorák
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1893 ; USA
30. Symphony no 8 in G major, Op. 88/B 163 by Antonín Dvorák
Conductor: George Szell
Orchestra/Ensemble: Cleveland Orchestra
Period: Romantic
Written: 1889 ; Bohemia
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