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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 1:57 pm 
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For those who must have everything....Scheduled for February, 2008 in England and.........

The Complete EMI Recordings (1946-1984) Volume 2 - Opera & Vocal
Herbert von Karajan - 100th Anniversary Collection

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Herbert von Karajan

On 4th April 2008, the classical music world will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of Herbert von Karajan, one of the 20th century's greatest musicians. Karajan was an icon, a Maestro, something we have tried to portray in our cover sleeves for these releases. Herbert von Karajan was very closely associated with EMI Classics, and recorded with us from 1946-1984 - a partnership that produced nearly 160 CDs worth of music and over 1,000 hours of recorded music.



EMI - The Karajan Collection - 5119732

(CD - 72 discs)



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The Complete EMI Recordings (1946-1984) Volume 1 - Orchestral
Herbert von Karajan - 100th Anniversary Collection

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Herbert von Karajan

On 4th April 2008, the classical music world will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of Herbert von Karajan, one of the 20th century's greatest musicians. Karajan was an icon, a Maestro, something we have tried to portray in our cover sleeves for these releases. Herbert von Karajan was very closely associated with EMI Classics, and recorded with us from 1946-1984 - a partnership that produced nearly 160 CDs worth of music and over 1,000 hours of recorded music.



EMI - The Karajan Collection - 5120382

(CD - 88 discs)



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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 2:26 pm 
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WOW!

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That's very interesting thanks for that.

I know very little about Karajan. I love Karajan's interpretations of Beethoven's Symphonies and - strangely enough - his version of Mahler's Fifth. I am not impressed with his version of Mahler's Fourth and need to listen to the Sixth again. I do not like his interpretation of the Rite of Spring, I prefer Boulez, Bernstein, Solti, Haitink, et al.

What's the Forum member's attitude towards Karajan's music? Where do you think Karajan excelled?

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Last edited by Seán on Wed Jan 09, 2008 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 3:47 pm 
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I've become a gradually bigger Karajan fan as the years have gone on, until I've reached the point where he's probably one of my four or five favorite conductors.

And some of his EMI work with the Berlin Philharmonic is extremely appealing. The Bruckner 4 and 7, the Sibelius 2nd, Wagner orchestral highlights are stand outs that come immediately to mind, although I'm sure there are others if I took more time to think it over.
On DG, I love some of that '63 Beethoven set. The 60s recording of Brahms 2nd is tremendous, as is the EMI recording of the 4th with the Philharmonia, although the absolute best Brahms I've heard from Karajan, and some of the best I've heard from anyone for that matter, has been via live non-commercial recordings (try this if you're interested.....but make sure to read the rules and their delivery terms first: http://www.musicinthemail.com/classical ... chor863471 there is also a Brahms 2nd from 1983 at Salzburg I've seen floating around in various places that is probably as good as any Brahms 2nd I've ever heard)

I like his last two recordings of Bruckner's 7th and 8th with the VPO a lot, as well as his Bruckner 5th with the BPO.

Many of his Richard Strauss tone poem recordings are among the best.

His R-K Scheherazade is among the best, as is his 70s Tchaikovsky 4th on DG.

As I indicated above, I could go on and on if I wanted to take the rest of the day to think about this, but you get the point :). That's not to say that he didn't have his share of clunkers. But as with Ormandy in many cases, when a conductor with a great orchestra records a piece three or four times, you're bound to get at least one outstanding recording in there.

And naturally the type of orchestral sound he cultivated isn't suited to everyone's taste. I happen to like it though.

Oh, and I really should mention his '67 video of Verdi's Requiem at La Scala, with one of the great casts of soloists and probably my favorite Verdi Requiem.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 4:38 pm 
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Barry Z wrote:
Oh, and I really should mention his '67 video of Verdi's Requiem at La Scala, with one of the great casts of soloists and probably my favorite Verdi Requiem.

That's the one directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot...truly a great DVD...there is also a B+W Guilini Requiem on EMI DVD that is equally as good... 8)


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Another very good Karajan DVD (from a performance standpoint; maybe not in terms of video direction) is a live Eroica with the BPO during their 100th anniversary concert. It's one of those cheap Sony DVDs, but as I said, it's an actual live performance, as opposed to most of the other ones in that series. And it's a pretty good example of how exciting he could be in concert too.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 5:00 pm 
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Barry Z wrote:
Another very good Karajan DVD (from a performance standpoint; maybe not in terms of video direction) is a live Eroica with the BPO during their 100th anniversary concert. It's one of those cheap Sony DVDs, but as I said, it's an actual live performance, as opposed to most of the other ones in that series. And it's a pretty good example of how exciting he could be in concert too.

There is a LVB 9th Symphony as well filmed against a black background I remember seeing a few years ago...


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 5:11 pm 
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Von Karajan's DG Mahler's Ninth was an early benchmark recording for me to show how great digital audio was. It's still a contender.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 5:45 pm 
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Not for me, thanks. Do the box sets come with a picture of Karajan conducting in an SS uniform, as persistent rumors have stated that he did at least once?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 8:30 pm 
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A rabbit and a snake, both are born blind and they meet one day on a bridge over a river, each one senses the other's vulnerability and that each may have something to fear from the other...they agree to touch and feel each other to get an idea of which animal the other is...the snake wraps itself around the rabbit and says, Oooh you're all soft and cuddly, you have big ears and a fluffy tail, you must be a Bunny Rabbit, the rabbit touches the snake and immediately leaps away, Oh My God, you are so gross, you have skin like leather, a forked tongue and no ears...I guess you must be Herbert Von Karajan... :lol:


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 8:56 pm 
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Search amazon.com on the string "karajan complete emi" and volume 1 and 2 come up. I don't know what to think. For example, how many complete Beethoven symphony sets do you get? Certainly 1963 and 1977. I don't know when the other 2 were made.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 9:34 pm 
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slofstra wrote:
Search amazon.com on the string "karajan complete emi" and volume 1 and 2 come up. I don't know what to think. For example, how many complete Beethoven symphony sets do you get? Certainly 1963 and 1977. I don't know when the other 2 were made.


The '63 and '77 sets are on DG, as is the digital set. The only complete Beethoven symphony set on EMI is the one with the Philharmonia. There may have been other individual recordings with the VPO as well, but not a full cycle.

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The DG stuff just started showing up at J+R, I think it's 100 discs, every note he ever fu**in played will be released, it will be worse than Mozart's Anniversary... :wink:

The snake and rabbit joke comes from the Berlin Philharmonic, he also told the members of the Orchestra that they did not have to stand up at the Airport when he arrived to catch the plane, they said it was only because he was sensitive about being so short that the musicians would have towered over him, and we certainly can't have that now can we... :lol:


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Modernistfan wrote:
Not for me, thanks. Do the box sets come with a picture of Karajan conducting in an SS uniform, as persistent rumors have stated that he did at least once?


I don't know about the uniform, but it looks like he's got his eyes closed, as usual...that is so disrespectful of the orchestra musicians....
I heard a story that an English orchestra [Philharmonia, I think] got him good for that....
vK was conducting a Bruckner symphony, which started with a soft string tremolo...vK of course, with his eyes closed, gives a down beat and......silence!! nothing!! :shock: :shock:
he opens his eyes, looks around - the orchestra players had their eyes closed also!! :lol: :P :roll:


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 1:29 am 
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Heck148 wrote:
Modernistfan wrote:
Not for me, thanks. Do the box sets come with a picture of Karajan conducting in an SS uniform, as persistent rumors have stated that he did at least once?


I don't know about the uniform, but it looks like he's got his eyes closed, as usual...that is so disrespectful of the orchestra musicians....
I heard a story that an English orchestra [Philharmonia, I think] got him good for that....
vK was conducting a Bruckner symphony, which started with a soft string tremolo...vK of course, with his eyes closed, gives a down beat and......silence!! nothing!! :shock: :shock:
he opens his eyes, looks around - the orchestra players had their eyes closed also!! :lol: :P :roll:


While all conductors rehearse, Karajan made it a science. Unlike many of his colleagues, he didn't leave anything to chance, no spontaneity. That is why many of his recordings sound rather homogenized. But when he is good he is really, really good!*

I don't like his Holst's "The Planets", Debussy's "La Mer" or Rimsky-Korssakoff's "Scheherezade"---they're just too Germanic sounding. (Hey, Karl! Are you reading this?! :) ).

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*e.g. Beethoven's 2nd, 5th, 7th and 9th with the BPO; Schumann's 3rd and 4th; Brahms' 1st with VPO on RCA, etc.

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Jack Kelso wrote:
That is why many of his recordings sound rather homogenized.


I agree - he style is ultra-controlling, stifling, enervating, even..it always sounds like the orchestra never gets past 80% throttle - it's always held back - just so much crescendo, just so much accent, just so much fortissimo.
his readings, to me sound "monotonous" [as in monotone-ous] - everything rounded off and smooth, creamy, no sharp edges or accents.
some people think it is the ultimate. not me...I cannot think of any HvK performance that I'd rank at the top or amongst the top contenders in any repertoire..


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Try his EMI of Sibelius' 5th and his DG of Sibelius' 7th.

His DG of Shostakovich's 10th is extremely exciting.

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johnQpublic wrote:
Try his EMI of Sibelius' 5th and his DG of Sibelius' 7th.


I never have been excited by his Sibelius....too contained, too round, too smooth.

Quote:
His DG of Shostakovich's 10th is extremely exciting.

the competition for this work is formidable - Stokowski, Mravinsky, Mitropoulos, Solti - all grippingly dramatic and exciting....


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:50 pm 
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Barry Z wrote:
...the type of orchestral sound he cultivated isn't suited to everyone's taste.



I probably will get the set. I'm one of those who must have everything. (I've had to wait a long time in life to finally get the the point where I can be genuinely spoiled, and I intend to enjoy it while I can!)

That said ... I have never been a big fan of von Karajan. I notice that I have relatively few recordings of his, on EMI, DG, or any other label, on either my LP shelves or CD racks. I do know that some pieces I have heard first on Karajan recordings turned out to be pieces that I cared little for ... sometimes until years later when I heard the piece done by another conductor in a manner that made me say "Ah! So that's what it's about. This piece is good, after all."

I also know that occasionally I have found von Karajan's readings stellar -- such as in the 1963 Beethoven set on DG (whereas I cannot stomach the later set), in the Mozart horn concerti with Dennis Brain, and in the Strauss Four Last Songs whether the singer is Tomowa-Sintow or Janowitz. It seems I can appreciate the conductor in his earlier works, whereas I have largely avoided his digital era stuff, as I would avoid the plague.

Still ... the EMI set seems inviting, especially since I have so little experience with this particular conductor. And whatever his ties to the SS or Nazi Germany may have been, I know that he will not directly be profitting from any royalties from this Set ... so I need feel no guilt there.

--SONNET CLV (currently listening to the soundtrack music for Charlie Chaplin's 1942 edit of his classic silent film The Gold Rush)--


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Well, speaking as an avid Griegian, I'd have to say Karajan did a well-above-average Peer Gynt, Holberg Suite and Lyric Suite. Unfortunately, those are on Universal, not EMI.

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Heck148 wrote:
Jack Kelso wrote:
That is why many of his recordings sound rather homogenized.


I agree - he style is ultra-controlling, stifling, enervating, even..it always sounds like the orchestra never gets past 80% throttle - it's always held back - just so much crescendo, just so much accent, just so much fortissimo.
his readings, to me sound "monotonous" [as in monotone-ous] - everything rounded off and smooth, creamy, no sharp edges or accents.
some people think it is the ultimate. not me...I cannot think of any HvK performance that I'd rank at the top or amongst the top contenders in any repertoire..


I am inclined to agree with that analysis. I like his interpretation of Mahler's Fifth, it's spectacular. He seems to approach the Fourth and Sixth in the same way.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 3:18 pm 
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Seán wrote:
Heck148 wrote:
Jack Kelso wrote:
That is why many of his recordings sound rather homogenized.


I agree - he style is ultra-controlling, stifling, enervating, even..it always sounds like the orchestra never gets past 80% throttle - it's always held back - just so much crescendo, just so much accent, just so much fortissimo.
his readings, to me sound "monotonous" [as in monotone-ous] - everything rounded off and smooth, creamy, no sharp edges or accents.
some people think it is the ultimate. not me...I cannot think of any HvK performance that I'd rank at the top or amongst the top contenders in any repertoire..


I am inclined to agree with that analysis. I like his interpretation of Mahler's Fifth, it's spectacular. He seems to approach the Fourth and Sixth in the same way.


From the few experiences I've had hearing tapes of his live performances, I get the impression he was much more aggressive in the concert hall. I mentioned some of those Brahms performances. There is a cycle from NYC in the mid 70s that features Furtwangler-like intensity in many places.

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Heck148 wrote:
Jack Kelso wrote:
That is why many of his recordings sound rather homogenized.


I agree - he style is ultra-controlling, stifling, enervating, even..it always sounds like the orchestra never gets past 80% throttle - it's always held back - just so much crescendo, just so much accent, just so much fortissimo.
his readings, to me sound "monotonous" [as in monotone-ous] - everything rounded off and smooth, creamy, no sharp edges or accents.
some people think it is the ultimate. not me...I cannot think of any HvK performance that I'd rank at the top or amongst the top contenders in any repertoire..


I still stand by many of his best recordings of the Austro-German repertoire, e.g. those I mentioned above and perhaps many of his Bruckner recordings as well.

His Schumann Third got rave reviews, that it "set new standards of interpretation" and I agree. He is the ONLY conductor who takes the 4th movement (Feierlich) over 7 minutes, which is closest to Schumann's own intentions. There are several "rough edges" to the brass in the 1st and 5th movements---and that's the way it should be, otherwise it loses that "Schumann sound".

Tschüß!
Jack

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Heck148 wrote:
Jack Kelso wrote:
That is why many of his recordings sound rather homogenized.


I agree - he style is ultra-controlling, stifling, enervating, even..it always sounds like the orchestra never gets past 80% throttle - it's always held back - just so much crescendo, just so much accent, just so much fortissimo.
his readings, to me sound "monotonous" [as in monotone-ous] - everything rounded off and smooth, creamy, no sharp edges or accents.
some people think it is the ultimate. not me...I cannot think of any HvK performance that I'd rank at the top or amongst the top contenders in any repertoire..


That smoothness is certainly untrue of his Beethoven 9th, I think 1977, anyway with Tomawa-Sintow and Van Dam. I've never heard such fury as displayed in the finale of this recording. Karajan is hard to top in Beethoven and Brahms, and as they are hard to top as composers what does that make Karajan. The creme de la creme (or perhaps better said, der schlag auf der schlag).


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slofstra wrote:
Karajan is hard to top in Beethoven and Brahms,

not for me, most any other conductor does a better job. I just don't like the thick, monotonous, smooth and gooey sound that HvK gets...he seemed unable, or unwilling, to concede that different styles of music require a different sort of sound...

I've never heard a recording of his where he really gives the orchestra full throttle - he always had to be in control - it sounds stifled to me...
I've tried repeatedly to warm up to his approach, without success.


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slofstra wrote:
Search amazon.com on the string "karajan complete emi" and volume 1 and 2 come up.


I just did (in google though, not reading your post carefully). Funny - you can pre-order volume one for 7.99 pounds at amazon.co.uk. :shock: :o :shock: That's what I just did... Not that that's the kind of set I would normally be too keen on - but for that price!?

I suppose though that some time closer to availability I'll get a mail: "sorry that was a mistake, actually it's 79.90"... Although I've heard of cases where cd sets could be pre-ordered for much less (Mahler cycle/Rattle?).

Florian


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Bösendorfer wrote:
slofstra wrote:
Search amazon.com on the string "karajan complete emi" and volume 1 and 2 come up.


I just did (in google though, not reading your post carefully). Funny - you can pre-order volume one for 7.99 pounds at amazon.co.uk. :shock: :o :shock: That's what I just did... Not that that's the kind of set I would normally be too keen on - but for that price!?

I suppose though that some time closer to availability I'll get a mail: "sorry that was a mistake, actually it's 79.90"... Although I've heard of cases where cd sets could be pre-ordered for much less (Mahler cycle/Rattle?).

Florian


I checked this out and sure enough, 88 CDs for less than 8 pounds. This is an absolute bargain and probably a mistake. I wonder if they will be legally bound to sell at this price if you order it?


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Barry Z wrote:
slofstra wrote:
Search amazon.com on the string "karajan complete emi" and volume 1 and 2 come up. I don't know what to think. For example, how many complete Beethoven symphony sets do you get? Certainly 1963 and 1977. I don't know when the other 2 were made.


The '63 and '77 sets are on DG, as is the digital set. The only complete Beethoven symphony set on EMI is the one with the Philharmonia. There may have been other individual recordings with the VPO as well, but not a full cycle.


I somehow assumed he had only ever recorded for DG, as the couple dozen Karajan recordings I own are all DG. So I have no idea what the EMI stuff would be. Did he simultaneously record for both labels?


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slofstra wrote:
I somehow assumed he had only ever recorded for DG, as the couple dozen Karajan recordings I own are all DG. So I have no idea what the EMI stuff would be. Did he simultaneously record for both labels?


Yes. There was a lot of early EMI stuff that may have come before he signed on with DG; much of that being with the Philharmonia. He made a bunch of EMI recordings with the BPO in the 70s too, also while he was making recordings for DG. I'm not sure if he was recording for EMI the entire time he was with DG though.

I believe there were some instances when he recorded the same symphonies with the BPO for both DG and EMI within a few years of each other (I'm thinking Bruckner's 4th and 7th symphonies, probably some or all of the Tchaikovsky symphonies and maybe more stuff as well).

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 6:47 am 
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slofstra wrote:
Bösendorfer wrote:
slofstra wrote:
Search amazon.com on the string "karajan complete emi" and volume 1 and 2 come up.


I just did (in google though, not reading your post carefully). Funny - you can pre-order volume one for 7.99 pounds at amazon.co.uk. :shock: :o :shock: That's what I just did... Not that that's the kind of set I would normally be too keen on - but for that price!?

I suppose though that some time closer to availability I'll get a mail: "sorry that was a mistake, actually it's 79.90"... Although I've heard of cases where cd sets could be pre-ordered for much less (Mahler cycle/Rattle?).

Florian


I checked this out and sure enough, 88 CDs for less than 8 pounds. This is an absolute bargain and probably a mistake. I wonder if they will be legally bound to sell at this price if you order it?


I have just returned from visiting the Amazon website. I have pre-ordered a copy of the Karajan set. Thanks for drawing my attention to this offer, it is a great bargain.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 9:08 am 
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Quote:
Karajan-Ten Tons Worth Of.......


Crap?

I'm 98% in agreement with Heck, but do know of one or two recordings by Herbie the K that are pretty darned good. Mostly, however, he embodies all the faults of late-Romantic orchestra excess, with that thick, cloying, string-heavy sound burying orchestral color and detail.

When I came of age buying classical LPs, the choice in basic repertoire often came down to Karajan/BP/DGG or Haitink/RCO/Philips. For me it was Haitink, hands down, virtually every time I had a chance to compare. The Haitink/RCO symphonies blow Herbie the K out of the water! Yet one rarely hears how good they were, but hears the HvK '63 set praised to the high heavens almost every day.

Listen to the Prokofiev cycle under Ozawa or any of their recordings under Boulez and you'll hear just how great an orchestra the BP really is.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 9:57 am 
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DavidRoss wrote:

Listen to the Prokofiev cycle under Ozawa or any of their recordings under Boulez and you'll hear just how great an orchestra the BP really is.


some of my BPO favorites from the HvK years:

-Prokofieff - Romeo & Juliet - excerpts [lot] - Salonen/BPO/Sony/10/86

-Strauss - Symphonic Music from late Operas - Zubin Mehta/BPO/Sony/1990

great discs, that you may still find in the cutout bins or mail order cheapies...
the BPO sounds great - very colorful and flexible, and producing sounds that vK would never have tolerated....


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David and Heck, I understand your position but I would contend that an 88 disc set of Karajan's recordings for less than $20 is a bargain. Anyway, when it comes to classical music I'm on a voyage of discovery. There is bound to be plenty of music in that collection that would be of interest to me.

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Seán wrote:
David and Heck, I understand your position but I would contend that an 88 disc set of Karajan's recordings for less than $20 is a bargain. Anyway, when it comes to classical music I'm on a voyage of discovery. There is bound to be plenty of music in that collection that would be of interest to me.


I agree. There are a number of hard-core anti-Karajan people out there who just can't stand the sound he brought out of that orchestra. But the guy has probably sold more records than any other conductor, and while some of that was marketing, it wasn't ALL marketing. The BPO of the 60s and 70s is one of my two favorite orchestras, along with the Philadelphia of the 50s, and that's in large part due to that Karajan sound.

You'll find plenty of classical fans who would rate Karajan among the best conductors for Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner, Strauss, Sibelius, Tchaikovsky, and the list goes on from there.

The only way to know whether you'll agree with Heck and David or me and the other Karajan fans is to try it for yourself.

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Barry Z wrote:

You'll find plenty of classical fans who would rate Karajan among the best conductors for Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner, Strauss, Sibelius, Tchaikovsky, and the list goes on from there.


it's true that Karajan's recordings elicit extreme reactions from listeners - some people love it, others find it dull and bloated....

Quote:
The only way to know whether you'll agree with Heck and David or me and the other Karajan fans is to try it for yourself.

exactly.
however I find the idea that HvK conducted a furious performance of anything rather hard to imagine....he was way too much of a control freak....fury was not a color on his palette....it might require things to sound not nice, not smooth, not round....


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Barry--I agree that it would be an economical way for someone new to the repertoire to get exposed. The idea of such a "bargain" (though I suspect they'll catch the error) is appealing, but I'll pass.

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"It is the highest form of self-respect to admit our errors and mistakes and make amends for them. To make a mistake is only an error in judgment, but to adhere to it when it is discovered shows infirmity of character." ~Dale Turner

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I have never been to keen on his Orchestral Recordings, there are some discs that others have already pointed out that I like, some Mahler, some Bruckner and the 63 Beethoven Symphonies although I have not played that in years, BUT his Opera Recordings for both EMI and DG are in many cases the best there is...to name a couple...actually to name ten

Cose Fan Tutti with Schwartzkopf
Il Trovatore with Callas
Pelleas and Melisande with Von Stade
Tosca with Price
La Boheme with Pavarotti and Freni
Aida with Price
Parsifal with Hofmann and Van Dam
Ariadne auf Naxos with Schwartzkopf and Streich
Der Rosenkavalier with Ludwig etc
Handel and Gretel with Shwartzkopf and Grumer


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Chalkperson wrote:
I have never been to keen on his Orchestral Recordings, there are some discs that others have already pointed out that I like, some Mahler, some Bruckner and the 63 Beethoven Symphonies although I have not played that in years, BUT his Opera Recordings for both EMI and DG are in many cases the best there is.


It's interesting that you should say that because the BBC Radio 3 program Building a Library Recommendation is for

WAGNER: Die Walkyre

Siegmund - Jon Vickers; Hunding - Martti Talvela; Wotan - Thomas Stewart; Sieglinde - Gundula Janowitz; Brunnhilde - Regine Crespin; Fricka - Josephine Veasey; Gerhilde - Liselotte Rebmann; Ortlinde - Carlotta Ordassy; Waltraute - Ingrid Steger; Schwertleite - Lilo Brockhaus; Helmwige - Daniza Mastilovic; Siegrune - Barbro Ericson; Grimgerde - Cvetka Ahlin; Rossweisse - Helga Jenckel Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Herbert von Karajan (conductor) DG 457 785-2 (4 CDs - also in 14 CD Box Set on DG 457 780-2, both Mid Price)


They compared this recording with several others including one by Haitink.

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I am not that much a Wagner Fan, I have the Ring by Bohm, Solti and Keilberth, the Keilberth is by far my favourite, I have never heard the Karajan Ring but I own his Tristan, I just feel that maybe because of the use of singers (ie not musicans/slaves) his Operas have far greater impact on me...I too am a perfectionst in all I do, it is not always for the best and it is a way tougher disease that Audiophilia..that said maybe Barry is right that we should search out Live Karajan Recordings instead, I have a Box from the late Thirties and Forties that is made up of Live Broadcasts, I will give it another spin next week...of course that's after I have finished my Mahlerfest that you inspired, fifteen discs down twenty something to go...


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Chalkperson wrote:
I too am a perfectionst in all I do...
You do have my sympathy--no, make that compassion, for I have walked many miles in those shoes! :) I love the irony that you misspelled "perfectionist" in the statement above. Perfectionism, of course, has nothing to do with being perfect or error-free, but rather with feeling like you're a worthless shite if you're not perfect, therefore being too rigid to risk failure, too insecure to admit error, and too handicapped by fear and self-flagellation to be free and forgiving and to learn by any means other than the hard (and slow) way. Fortunately, recognizing the problem as a problem is the first step in overcoming it.

And, no, the above is not nearly as much a digression as you might think since this is a thread devoted to discussion of von Karajan. :wink:

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"It is the highest form of self-respect to admit our errors and mistakes and make amends for them. To make a mistake is only an error in judgment, but to adhere to it when it is discovered shows infirmity of character." ~Dale Turner

"Anyone who doesn't take truth seriously in small matters cannot be trusted in large ones either." ~Albert Einstein
"Truth is incontrovertible; malice may attack it and ignorance may deride it; but, in the end, there it is." ~Winston Churchill

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Heck148 wrote:
[ -Strauss - Symphonic Music from late Operas - Zubin Mehta/BPO/Sony/1990

great disc, that you may still find in the cutout bins or mail order cheapies...


I did find this one in a small Mom & Pop used CD store in Virginia Beach about 4 years ago for about $3. In fact I just listened to the "Danae" fragments last week.

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DavidRoss wrote:
Perfectionism, of course, has nothing to do with being perfect or error-free, but rather with feeling like you're a worthless shite if you're not perfect, therefore being too rigid to risk failure, too insecure to admit error, and too handicapped by fear and self-flagellation to be free and forgiving and to learn by any means other than the hard (and slow) way. Fortunately, recognizing the problem as a problem is the first step in overcoming it.

It is even more difficult to accept the work of others (my six photographers) unless they attain the lofty goal, my guys thought they were perfectionists till they met and worked for me...I am also happy to admit errror but when I do I go rambling on for ages and I apologise at least five times for the same offence... :oops:


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I have no real antipathy for Karajan, possibly because I've admired his work from a distance. I never really got heavily into the man's discography, though he did have a great deal on his plate repertoire-wise, and did ( to my ears) serviceable, intelligent, and (fairly frequently) outstanding performances of the basic stuff he played.

I don't have as much aggravation with a prolific recording conductor like Karajan as I do with (say) Neville Marriner. (Of the others, Jarvi at least had sense enough to stay out of the baroque-classic literature; and Ormandy's performances I accepted simply because he was the most unassuming of peacocks.)

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 1:24 am 
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slofstra wrote:
Karajan is hard to top in Beethoven and Brahms...


Now don't forget Schumann (you know---the guy Szell regarded as central to the German Romantic orchestral repertoire! :) ) because Karajan does exceptional work on all four symphonies---but actually leads the pack of all other conductors with the Third ("Rheinische"), as I have explained on an earlier post. My fav for this work.

Yes, Karajan's Beethoven 2nd, 5th (with the just barely over-the-top Kleiber), 7th, 8th and 9th are my favs for those works. With Brahms it's the First and Third.

Tschüß,
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I spotted yesterday that Karajan/VPO performances of Bruckner's 8th and 9th symphonies on DG DVD are scheduled to be released next month. The performances are live. I know the 8th is in one of the famous cathedrals in Linz, Austria. I'm not sure about the 9th, although it may be from that location also. When the topic came up on RCMR a while back, the consensus was that this Bruckner 8th is better than the one in the Sony DVD. I have it via download and it is indeed a glorious performance.

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Can someone put on the URL to find this Karajan/EMI bargain at Amazon/UK? I've done a search there and product information/pricing is not coming up. Many thanks.

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Lance wrote:
Can someone put on the URL to find this Karajan/EMI bargain at Amazon/UK? I've done a search there and product information/pricing is not coming up. Many thanks.


Let's hope that Amazon honour their commitment.

Lance, if you search for "karajan complete emi" on amazon.co.uk or click on this link you should find the web page:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_ss_w_h ... mplete+emi

Happy shopping.

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Jack Kelso wrote:
Now don't forget Schumann (you know---the guy Szell regarded as central to the German Romantic orchestral repertoire! :) ) because Karajan does exceptional work on all four symphonies---but actually leads the pack of all other conductors with the Third ("Rheinische"), as I have explained on an earlier post. My fav for this work.


Ah, Jack, I can see where you are coming from, but I'd need to be a pretty big Karajan fan to agree with you. He indeed has the very best 'propulsive' Rhenish that I've heard (I do very much like his choice of tempi), but I tend to favour conductors who interpret the work as a piece within which Schumann was trying to reconcile Romantic subject matter and Classical guidelines, and as such I tend to go for much more 'Classical' interpretations. Dohnanyi's my man!

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I believe Karajan's Beethoven (DG, any) Schumann (DG) and Schubert (EMI) cycles are among his best orchestral recordings, at least that I've heard. I used to enjoy his Sibelius, but now that has come across as mannered. I feel Karajan is at his best when he is simple and direct.

John


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 1:08 am 
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keninottawa wrote:
Jack Kelso wrote:
Now don't forget Schumann (you know---the guy Szell regarded as central to the German Romantic orchestral repertoire! :) ) because Karajan does exceptional work on all four symphonies---but actually leads the pack of all other conductors with the Third ("Rheinische"), as I have explained on an earlier post. My fav for this work.


Ah, Jack, I can see where you are coming from, but I'd need to be a pretty big Karajan fan to agree with you. He indeed has the very best 'propulsive' Rhenish that I've heard (I do very much like his choice of tempi), but I tend to favour conductors who interpret the work as a piece within which Schumann was trying to reconcile Romantic subject matter and Classical guidelines, and as such I tend to go for much more 'Classical' interpretations. Dohnanyi's my man!


And I see your point of view also, Ken. Yes, I have the Dohnanyi Third and it is very classically done. But my personal taste is for more 'gusto' in that work (the Schumann FIRST I prefer more restrained), and other "great 'Rheinische'" recordings are from the batons of Giulini, Muti and Norrington.

Other wonderful Karajan recordings are Weber's "Der Freischütz" overture, Liszt's "Les Prèludes" and "Mazeppa" and a very interestingly drawn-out but dramatic Mendelssohn Fifth ("Reformation").

I only regret that he never tackled the Raff symphonies. Now THAT would have been a milestone---especially since he would have been totally without competition. I feel Karajan's style would have been perfect for that type of symphonic fare.

Tschüß!
Jack

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