Beethoven was Wilhelm Furtwängler’s guiding musical force. In his interpretations of the symphonies, the conductor generates irresistible dramatic momentum – and a constant sense of imaginative freshness – through the interrelationship of form, harmony, texture, rhythm and tempo. These recordings, all made in the late 1940s and early 1950s, in the Musikverein in Vienna and at concerts in London, Bayreuth and Stockholm, were newly remastered in 2010, bringing their sound more alive than ever before.
This important set contains the sixteen Beethoven sonatas that Wilhelm Kempff recorded for Grammophon in Germany between 1940 and 1943. Several are reissued here for the first time since their original release on 78rpm discs and none are currently available elsewhere. The sound is excellent for the period and all reveal the young Kempff at his best, in performances that compliment his later thoughts. The release is the companion of two previous APR releases of early Kempff Beethoven recordings the late sonatas (APR6018) and piano concertos 1, 3, 4 & 5 (APR6019), both of which received excellent reviews and were amongst APRs best sellers.
Conductor Wilhelm Furtwangler already enjoyed a worldwide legendary standing during his lifetime - he was considered the German conductor and performances were greeted with rapturous applause. Today, more than 50 years after his death, Wilhelm Furtwangler is still an icon and his work has become an integral part ofthe music scene.
A must-have for collectors of sublime historical recordings, this re-release of Fournier and Gulda's 1960 recording is equally appropriate for listeners seeking their first recording of Beethoven's works for cello and piano. Fournier's commitment to the exploration of the Beethoven sonatas and variations is clear; he made three complete recordings of the works over the course of his career – the first with Artur Schnabel in 1947, this one with Friedrich Gulda in 1960, and finally with pianist Wilhelm Kempff in 1965.
Among the many genres Beethoven used to build on his reputation upon his arrival in Vienna, the violin sonatas allowed him not only to demonstrate his own prowess on the keyboard, but also played to the increasing popularity of chamber works that might be attempted by sophisticated amateurs. Following Mozart's trend of liberating the violin from a mere secondary role, Beethoven continued to bring about the equality of both instruments in all of his duo sonatas. Performing these 10 sonatas is the splendid duo of violinist Renaud Capuçon and pianist Frank Braley. The recordings take place in la Chaux de Fonds concert hall in Switzerland, a venue that offers listeners an exceptionally wonderful, intimate sound quality even on a CD.
The Orford String Quartet was a Canadian string quartet active from 1965 through 1991. They came to be the leading string quartet in Canada, and one of the finest in the world. For 26 years, the Orford String Quartet was the best of its breed in Canada.
Here on five CDs are Wilhelm Kempff’s complete Decca and DG concerto recordings dating from the 1950s. Most mercurial of musical geniuses, Kempff’s playing created an instantly recognisable aura and ambience, making comparison with other great pianists of the 20th century an exercise in irrelevance. For Alfred Brendel, Kempff was ‘like an Aeolian harp, ever ready to respond to whatever interesting wind blew his way’ and although there was clearly a ground plan behind his interpretations they were marked by an improvisatory charm and pulse that gave a rare individuality to virtually all his performances. Outwardly benign (some considered him cosy, or gemütlich) his playing brimmed over with a colour and nuance worn with an enviable ease and lightness. Unlike so many of his colleagues (Schnabel and Myra Hess, for example) Kempff adored recording and was more than happy to present this or that jewel-like facet of a score for his listener’s endless fascination and delight.
This three-CD set showcases Beethoven's most famous Violin Sonatas in multiple performances by some of the 20th century's greatest violin/piano duos. A virtual master class in Golden Age interpretation, this collection features three performances of the "Spring" Sonata and four of the "Kreutzer" Sonata, ranging from Georg Kulenkampff and Wilhelm Kempff's "Kreutzer" in 1935 to Nathan Milstein and Arthur Balsam's "Spring" in 1950. The set also includes the celebrated 1940 "Kreutzer" performance at the Library of Congress by Joseph Szigeti and Bela Bartók. To recapture the magic of these performances for a new century, rare, pristine 78s were transferred and 24-bit digitally remastered using the state-of-the-art CAP 440 technique.
10 CD box set celebrating the work of the German Beethoven-pianist of international renown, Wilhelm Backhaus. It contains all of his concert recordings, the most popular sonatas and waltz-variations.