Legacy

  •  Gennady Rozhdestvensky: Shostakovich

    Gennady Rozhdestvensky (1931-2018) was one of Russia's greatest conductors along with Evgeny Mravinsky and Kirill Kondrashin. His close personal and musical relationship with Shostakovich began in the 1950s and continued until the composer's death in 1975. Rozhdestvensky said at the time, 'It would be difficult to overestimate the significance of my relations with Dmitri Shostakovich since he opened before me a musical universe like a gigantic magnifying glass reflecting our fragile world'. Rozhdestvensky conducted the first western premiere of Shostakovich's Symphony No.4 in Edinburgh in 1962 and after many subsequent performances internationally, it was also the inaugural piece in his tenure as chief conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra (1979-81). Composed in 1936 but condemned by the Soviet authorities, it did not receive it's first performance until 1961 in Moscow. The epic Symphony No.11, given a dramatic performance by the BBC Philharmonic in 1997, is based on revolutionary folksongs relating to the 1905 Russian Revolution, and received the Lenin Prize in 1958. Despite this, questions arose as to whether Shostakovich was denouncing the Soviet regime's brutal treatment of it's opponents in it, specifically the 1956 invasion of Hungary or the Tsarist tyranny and oppression of 1905, to which there are no conclusive answers.
  • Shura Cherkassky: Saint-Saëns & Liszt

    Shura Cherkassky was born in Odessa, Ukraine in 1909 and died in London in 1995. He was initially taught by his mother who had played for Tchaikovsky, but when the family moved to the US in 1923, he studied with his long-time teacher and mentor, the legendary Josef Hofmann, before auditioning for Rachmaninov. Prior to World War II, he had made his name in the US but from 1945 he extensively toured Europe and settled in London in 1961. The last of the great Romantic tradition of pianists, Cherkassky was described by Bryce Morrison as a 'mercurial genius', a unique personality, blessed with an incredible technique, who delighted in defying convention as no performance was identical. For a musician reluctant to visit the studio, live performances were the showcase for his stunning virtuosity and creativity caught on the wing.
  • Chamber Orchestra of Europe: Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms

    MP3 Album:
    This set is a testament to a remarkable collaboration between the conductor Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and its release this year marks the Orchestra’s 40th anniversary. These recordings also trace the relationship between Harnoncourt and the Styriarte Festival which started in 1987 and lasted for over 30 years. The repertoire in this set features live concerts performed between 1989 and 2007.
  • Chamber Orchestra of Europe: Schubert The Symphonies

    MP3 Album:
    Chamber Orchestra of Europe & Nikolaus Harnoncourt
  • Great Soloists from the Richard Itter Archive

    MP3 Album:
    These four discs document an amazing array of concerto soloists, caught at various stages of their careers in the four years 1953-56. Among them are several with claims to be the finest exponents of their particular concertos - notably David Oistrakh playing the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in a broadcast from the BBC Studios in 1954, and Dennis Brain in two Mozart Horn Concertos from 1953 & 1954 respectively along with Strauss’s Horn Concerto No.1, from 1956.
  • Sir Thomas Beecham (Richard Itter Collection Vol.2)

    MP3 Album:
    Live BBC recordings from the 1950s with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and BBC Symphony Orchestra.
  • Carlo Maria Giulini: Mozart’s Le Nozze Di Figaro (Richard Itter Collection)

    MP3 Album:
    Carlo Maria Giulinis celebrated studio recording of Le nozze di Figaro was recorded in September 1959 following a live performance at the Royal Festival Hall a few days earlier. Nearly 18 months later on 6th February 1961 there was another RFH performance but with a substantially different cast from that on disc. Only two roles the Countess (Elisabeth Schwarzkopf) and Antonio (Piero Cappuccilli) were sung by the same artists.
  • Robert Casadesus (Richard Itter Collection)

    MP3 Album:
    Robert Casadesus (1899-1972) was a renowned 20th-century French pianist and composer who knew and worked with Ravel. He was especially known for his celebrated performances of the Mozart Concertos accompanied on record by George Szell – Gramophone called it ‘exquisite Mozart playing’, as well as his recordings of Ravel, Fauré and Debussy. He recorded Beethoven’s First, Fourth and Fifth Concertos, the latter two multiple times, though these were all made in the studio. He also extensively recorded the Beethoven Violin Sonatas with Zino Francescatti, who also appears in ICA Classics’ Pierre Monteux set.
  • Yehudi Menuhin: Mozart Violin Concertos (Richard Itter Collection)

    MP3 Album:
    This is the first time that these ‘live’ performances have been released and they are therefore of enormous interest to collectors and completists of this great violinist.
  • Otto Klemperer (Richard Itter Collection Vol.2)

    MP3 Album:
    This release has been sourced from the Richard Itter archive of ‘live’ recordings. The collection is very important for collectors because it has never been released before onto the market. Following the archive’s launch in October 2017 with releases featuring Beecham, Böhm, Cantelli, Karajan, du Pré, Klemperer and Rostropovich, it has received universal praise from both the classical media and record collectors for the excellent sound and performances.
  • Bruno Walter (Richard Itter Collection)

    MP3 Album:
    Bruno Walter’s (1876-1962) appearance in 1955 with the BBCSO formed part of the BBC’s May Festival, an annual event which looked back to the pre-war London Music Festival. The present recordings have never been previously issued and serve to illustrate his genius - he showed no diminution of his powers on the podium despite celebrating his 80th birthday the following year.
  • Pierre Monteux (Richard Itter Collection)

    MP3 Album:
    The great French conductor Pierre Monteux  (1875-1964) was naturally considered a specialist of his native country’s music, though he would never allow this to restrict him. This new set of previously unpublished recordings seeks to set the record straight, with a strong representation of German repertoire, notably Brahms’ Symphony No.3 with the Boston Symphony, which he never recorded commercially, in a rare ‘live’ performance from the 1956 Edinburgh Festival. More Brahms featuring two celebrated virtuosos – the Violin Concerto with the French violinist Zino Francescatti, and the Double Concerto where he is joined by his compatriot Pierre Fournier, both ‘live’ recordings from the Royal Festival Hall in 1955. Both are previously unpublished.

MP3 releases from the Legacy Series