It may be rash to claim that the French pianist Monique Haas (1909-1987) never made a bad recording, but you won't find one among her complete DG sessions. Dating from the late 1940s up to 1965, the recordings have been transferred from scratch, and they sound remarkably well for their respective vintages. The repertoire is diverse and unhackneyed, ranging from Mozart piano duets (with Heinz Schröter) and K. 449 and K. 488 concertos, rare Haydn gems (the E-flat Arietta with Variations and the Fantasia in C major), and the Stravinsky Capriccio, to Hindemith's Concert Music for piano, brass and harps (with the composer conducting), and a substantial sonata by Marcel Mihalovici (the pianist's husband) featuring violinist Max Rostal.
Containing six discs and 111 tracks, Deutsche Grammophon's 111 Years of Deutsche Grammophon is a sprawling collection of single items drawn largely from its enormous 55 CD 111 Years of Deutsche Grammophon The Collector's Edition…
Pianist Jan Lisiecki, just out of his teens when this recording was released, might have been expected to take a safe path with his recording of one of the most popular concertos in the repertory, the Schumann Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54. He has done anything but. This recording is unusual in several respects. It eschews the almost universal pairing with the Grieg Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16, in favor of a pair of late Schumann works that are rarely performed. But the real news here is the antiheroic and completely counter-to-type Schumann concerto itself. Lisiecki takes as a point of departure a waggish remark by Franz Liszt that the work is a "concerto without piano."
My first reaction was to wonder whether we had not passed saturation-point for recordings of Mahler's Fifth Symphony. Over a dozen are currently available, of which any one of those mentioned above should satisfy the needs of even an insatiable Mahlerian. All are performances on insight, executed in majestic style, and several are available on CD. Now comes Sinopoli to add to the pile. Remembering colleagues' reviews of his London performances of Mahler, I put this recording on the turntable with misgivings. But I have to report that I now gladly make room for this remarkable performance alongside my other favourites. It does not displace them, but it complements them.
Part of the art of conducting seems to me to lie in the ability to make the listener attend afresh to familiar music, to reveal new or different facets. This is what Sinopoli does here, and whatever may go on in the concert hall (I have not heard him there), in the recording studio, judging by this release, the most certainly does not miss or misjudge the spirit of the music.
22nd April 2016 would have been the 100th Birthday of violin legend Yehudi Menuhin, and Daniel Hope dedicates a complete album to his former mentor and close friend. After fleeing from the Apartheid regime in South Africa, and ending up in England, Hope’s mother was offered a job as a secretary to no-one less than Yehudi Menuhin, and later became his manager. Daniel Hope says about him: “Yehudi Menuhin is the reason I became a violinist. I was privileged to know Menuhin all my life – as he used to say, I fell into his lap, as a baby of two years age. Menuhin often called himself my “musical grandfather”. Now, in celebration of what would have been his centenary, my friends and I can finally pay our respects to this great man, in a way I am sure he would have loved,” said Daniel Hope. “My Tribute to Yehudi Menuhin” is a beautiful selection of works, mostly commissioned by or for Yehudi Menuhin. It is released internationally in February 2016.
The compact disc, as a sound carrier, was still on the horizon when Herbert von Karajan urged his record company to utilize the new digital technology in his recordings. Consequently Karajan's Magic Flute, recorded in 1980, became the first release of a Deutsche Grammophon digital production and was first released on LP.
"The set also includes two magnificent Kubelík recordings from the 1960s with Bavarian Radio forces. Schoenberg's Gurrelieder (with tenor Herbert Schachtschneider as a vocally heroic Waldemar) is superbly played and sung, and Kubelík's conducting is as dramatically involving as any. It sounds better than ever in this latest mastering. Finally, there is utter enchantment: the 1964 recording of Mendelssohn's music for "A Midsummer Night's Dream" (with Edith Mathis and Ursula Boese as soloists), prefaced by a fascinating rehearsal of the Overture, released here for the first time. The booklet includes excellent notes and photographs" ~International Record Review
A rewarding release… As to the Mandarin, first impressions suggest a gloved fist on Ozawa's part and a general softening of attack since [his earlier DG recording from] 1975… Ozawa is strong on sensuality - those all-pervading glissandos, the seduction games and the languidly teasing sequences that lead to the chase… As to the Concerto for Orchestra…the Bostonians' Bartókian pedigree - it was, after all, Koussevitzky who commissioned the work — guarantees a certain élan and refinement… Ozawa is best where the going gets frantic (his finale is terrific, especially at the outset, and he plays Bartok's more concise original ending)… Ozawa's virtues are intelligence, alertness and a fine ear for detail… (Gramophone [8/1995] reviewing the Bartók recordings, originally released as Philips 442783)
Ever since Beethoven wrote his last piano sonata and called it "Opus 111", the number 111 has enjoyed certain kudos in musical circles, and 2009 marks the 111th anniversary of Deutsche Grammophon.
Over 11 decades, the label's philosophy has always been “the greatest recordings by the greatest artists in the world” and now they showcase this with this incredible 55 CD box set.
"Sehr viel schöne Musik auf neun reich gefüllten CDs. Jedes Werk erfährt eine mehr als angemessene Interpretation. Kaufen und genießen!" ~Grammophone