Clemens Krauss: Complete Decca Recordings

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16 CD 

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Wiener Philharmoniker
Clemens Krauss (Μαέστρος)

CD 1

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770–1827)

Overture – Leonore No. 1, Op. 138*

Overture – Leonore No. 2, Op. 72a

Overture – Leonore No. 3, Op. 72b

Overture – Fidelio, Op. 72

Piano Concerto No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 19

Wilhelm Backhaus, piano; Wiener Philharmoniker *FIRST CD RELEASE ON DECCA

CD 2

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770–1827)

Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major, Op. 58

Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat major, Op. 73 ‘Emperor’

Wilhelm Backhaus, piano; Wiener Philharmoniker

CD 3

JOHANNES BRAHMS (1883–1897) Alto Rhapsody, Op. 53

Kathleen Ferrier, contralto, London Philharmonic Choir (Frederic Jackson, chorus master), London Philharmonic Orchestra

Academic Festival Overture, Op. 80*

Variations on a theme by Haydn, Op. 56a*

Hungarian Dances Nos. 1 & 3 (orch. Brahms)*

ANTONÍN DVOŘÁK (1841–1904) Slavonic Dances, Op. 46 (B.83) Nos. 3, 5 & 8*

London Symphony Orchestra

*FIRST CD RELEASE ON DECCA

CD 4

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864–1949)

Don Juan, Op. 20

Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche, Op. 28

Ein Heldenleben, Op. 40

Wiener Philharmoniker

CD 5

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864–1949)

Also sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30

Don Quixote, Op. 35

Wiener Philharmoniker, Pierre Fournier cello, Ernst Moraweg, viola

CD 6

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864–1949)

Symphonia domestica, Op. 53

Le Bourgeois gentilhomme – Suite, Op. 60

Wiener Philharmoniker

CD 7

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864–1949)

Aus Italien, Op. 16

Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche, Op. 28*

Tod und Verklärung, Op. 24*

Wiener Philharmoniker (Aus Italien)

Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala (Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche)

London Philharmonic Orchestra (Tod und Verklärung)

*FIRST CD RELEASE ON DECCA

CDs 8–9

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864–1949) Salome, Op. 54

Herod: Julius Patzak, Herodias: Margareta Kenney, Salome: Christel Goltz, Jochanaan: Hans Braun, Narraboth: Anton Dermota, Wiener Philharmoniker

CD 10

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770–1827) Overture – Fidelio, Op. 72*

London Philharmonic Orchestra

RICHARD WAGNER (1813–1883)

Tristan und Isolde: Prelude and Liebestod (concert version)

Parsifal: Karfreitagszauber (concert version)

London Philharmonic Orchestra

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864–1949) Der Rosenkavalier: Hab mir’s gelobt

Tiana Lemnitz, soprano, Erna Berger, soprano, Viorica Ursuleac, soprano, Orchester der Staatsoper Berlin

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART (1756–1791)

Don Giovanni: Deh vieni*

Le nozze di Figaro: Se vuol ballare*

Paul Schöffler, bass-baritone, National Symphony Orchestra

Le nozze di Figaro: Voi che sapete; Giunse alfin il momento … Deh vieni

Idomeneo: Se il padre; Non più, tutto ascoltai … Non temer, amato bene, KV 490

GIUSEPPE VERDI (1813–1901) Rigoletto: Caro nome; Tutte le feste … Ah, solo per me

Hilde Gueden, soprano, Wiener Philharmoniker

*FIRST CD RELEASE ON DECCA

CDs 11–12

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899)

Die Fledermaus

Gabriel von Eisenstein: Julius Patzak

Rosalinde: Hilde Gueden

Dr. Falke: Alfred Poell

Adele: Wilma Lipp

Prinz Orlofsky: Sieglinde Wagner

Frank: Kurt Preger

Alfred: Anton Dermota

Dr. Blind: August Jaresch

Wiener Staatsopernchor, Wiener Philharmoniker

CDs 13–14

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899) Der Zigeunerbaron

Graf Peter Homonay: Alfred Poell, Conte Carnero: Karl Dönch, Sándor Barinkay: Julius Patzak, Kálman Zsupán: Kurt Preger, Arsena: Emmy Loose, Mirabella: Steffi Leverenz, Ottokar: August Jaresch, Czipra: Rosette Anday, Saffi: Hilde Zadek, Pali: Franz Bierback, Wiener Staatsopernchor, Wiener Philharmoniker

NEW YEAR CONCERTS

CD 15

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899) G’schichten aus dem Wienerwald – Walzer, Op. 325

JOSEF STRAUSS (1827–1870)

Die Libelle – Polka mazurka, Op. 204

Mein Lebenslauf ist Lieb und Lust! – Walzer, Op. 263

Jokey – Polka schnell, Op. 278

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899)

Éljen a Magyar! – Polka, Op. 332

Ägyptischer Marsch, Op. 335

Im Krapfenwald’l – Polka, Op. 336

Vergnügungszug – Polka, Op. 281

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899) & JOSEF STRAUSS (1827–1870) Pizzicato Polka

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899)

Künstlerleben – Walzer, Op. 316

Frühlingsstimmen – Walzer, Op. 410

CD 16

JOSEF STRAUSS (1827–1870)

Dorfschwalben aus Österreich – Walzer, Op. 164

Moulinet – Polka française, Op. 57

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899)

Morgenblätter – Walzer, Op. 279

Ritter Pásmán – Csárdás, Op. 441

Auf der Jagd – Polka schnell, Op. 373

JOSEF STRAUSS (1827–1870)

Ohne Sorgen! – Polka schnell, Op. 271

Feuerfest! – Polka française, Op. 269

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899)

Stadt und Land – Polka, Op. 322

Perpetuum Mobile – Musikalischer scherz, Op. 257

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899) Bei uns z’ Haus – Walzer, Op. 361

JOSEF STRAUSS (1827–1870) Sphärenklänge – Walzer, Op. 235

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899) An der schönen blauen Donau – Walzer, Op. 314

JOSEF STRAUSS (1827–1870)

Plappermäulchen – Polka schnell, Op. 245

Auf Ferienreisen! – Polka schnell, Op. 133

JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825–1899) Annen-Polka, Op. 117

JOHANN STRAUSS I (1804–1849) Radetzky-Marsch, Op. 228

Wiener Philharmoniker

CLEMENS KRAUSS /MONO RECORDINGS

The most comprehensive collection ever issued of Clemens Krauss’s commercial legacy of recordings, newly remastered and presented as an original jackets limited edition.

In Mark Obert-Thorn’s new remasterings for this Eloquence box set, we can appreciate anew the genius for colour, pacing and timing which made Clemens Krauss the unrivalled conductor of his day in the music of Johann and Richard Strauss. He began recording for Decca in 1947 – three sessions of Brahms in London including a famous account of the Alto Rhapsody which found Kathleen Ferrier in glorious voice – allowing for less than eight years of activity in the studio before the conductor’s untimely death from a heart attack in May 1954, hours after conducting a concert in Mexico City.

In that time, however, Decca secured Krauss in much of the repertoire for which he was renowned as a peerless interpreter. A Richard Strauss series captured all the major symphonic poems except the Alpine Symphony, plus a complete Salome with Christel Goltz, and, for Polydor (Deutsche Grammophon) the rapturous final Trio from Der Rosenkavalier recorded in pre-war Berlin with his wife, the soprano Viorica Ursuleac, as the Marschallin. Unlike many later recordings, these are not performances which pull out the modernist strands in Strauss’s form and harmony. Rather they place the composer in a lineage of lyricists and musical dramatists stretching back to Mozart. Strauss himself apparently regarded Krauss as the supreme conductor of his generation, supporting the younger man’s rise to a succession of top jobs of 1930s and 40s Austria and Germany.

During the war, Krauss founded the tradition of New Year’s Day concerts in Vienna, and Decca capitalised on their popularity with three albums which have become touchstones of interpretation in the music of the Strauss family – ‘by turns committed and distanced, never pasteurized or bent on proving anything’, as Carlos Kleiber remarked of the Decca recording of Die Fledermaus, which became a library choice for the work as soon as it was released in January 1951.

The trio of Beethoven concertos with Backhaus has also been a perennial favourite among collectors; much less familiar is the album of Leonore/Fidelio overtures which marked the premature end to Krauss’s Decca career, charged with visceral intensity and elevated by needle-point rhythmic detail. Sleeves feature the original Decca covers and the booklet includes a survey of Krauss’s remarkable life and times by Peter Quantrill.

Reviews

“[There is] the pleasure of Backhaus’s muscular and tender versatility and the lovely, lingering environment supplied by the conductor’s affectionate understanding.” High Fidelity, April 1952 (Beethoven: Piano Concerto No.4)

“The performance is on a high level. The subtlety and variety of Clemens Krauss’s conducting of waltzes (and of course the rest of the score) is a delight, as is the playing of the orchestra. Patzak gives a performance of wonderful subtlety and charm.” Opera, April 1952 (Strauss: Der Zigeunerbaron)

“The singing is sumptuous and exquisite. Miss Ferrier is at her best in the more serious Alto Rhapsody, where she receives splendid support … A Brahms disc of distinction, and another living memorial to a great lady who left us too soon.” High Fidelity, June 1954

“A remarkably fluent, perceptive and altogether compelling performance … Matching the performance is the truly superb sound Decca has produced, particularly brilliant in the rousing final movement, a riot of orchestral sound.” High Fidelity, August 1954 (R. Strauss: Aus Italien)

“A pleasing piece of romantic music, recommended by a splendid performance and recording.” The Record Guide, 1955 (R. Strauss: Aus Italien)

“Magnificently played and most skilfully recorded. The bass fugue can seldom have sounded so rich and clear” The Record Guide, 1955 (R. Strauss: Also sprach Zarathustra)

“Clemens Krauss’s reading is in the best tradition; he achieves nobility in the opening section, compels us to take sides in the battle, and extracts all the sweetness from the emotional passages.” The Record Guide, 1955 (R. Strauss: Ein Heldenleben)

“Many critics have been so bothered by the mundane details of the programme that they have failed to appreciate the beauties, as well as the dazzling cleverness of the score. This is a superb performance and the recording is a triumph for the engineers.” The Record Guide, 1955 (R. Strauss: Symphonia Domestica)

“Forceful, authoritative conducting, two really outstanding tenors for the roles of Herod and Narraboth, and an interesting Salome. Christel Goltz, in fact, must be ranked with Inge Borkh as the most satisfactory singer of the title role since Welitch.” High Fidelity, November 1963 (R. Strauss: Salome)

“It is scarcely possible to imagine a more delightful pair of records … No better conductor could have been found for this delectable score than Clemens Krauss … Apart from its musical and technical excellence, the recording has captured to a remarkable degree the illusion of a stage performance.” The Record Guide, 1955 (Strauss: Die Fledermaus)

“The Johann Strauss interpreter par excellence … Krauss revels in the niceties of tempo variation, in the contrivance of affetuoso phrasing or nuance; rhythm and tempo are the secrets of his magic … pure gold.” The Record Guide, 1955 (New Year’s Day collections)

“[Krauss’s] readings have the structural coherence and tremendous cogency evinced by Kempe, but also the inner energy and wonderful ear for detail that distinguishes Karajan’s readings. Despite being in mono, so much detail can be heard in these quite close-miked, immediate recordings … The performances have so much to commend them as a set that anyone interested in Strauss will want them.” Gramophone, October 2000 (Richard Strauss recordings)

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