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Tag: Leonard Bernstein

Leonard Bernstein – R. Strauss: Selections From "Salome", 5 Songs; Boito: Mefistofele Prologo (1978/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Leonard Bernstein – R. Strauss: Selections From “Salome”, 5 Songs; Boito: Mefistofele Prologo (1978/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz  | Time – 01:06:33 minutes | 1,19 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

This album offers Leonard Bernstein in some quite rare (at least for him, on disc) operatic repertoire. Given his flair for the dramatic, it’s not surprising that Bernstein would take so winningly to Strauss’s Salome. The Dance of the Seven Veils is full of color, sparkle, and cloying sensuality […] Montserrat Caballé sings with solid, beautifully produced tone and communicates a sense of unbearable longing […] She’s also very good in the lighter, sweeter Strauss songs that follow. There hardly could be a more extreme contrast with Salome than Boito’s Mefistofele, yet Bernstein – never one to shy away from the grandiose – pulls out all the stops in conjuring up the heavenly realm, with its clarion trombones and angelic choirs. Bass Nicolai Ghiaurov gives an arresting portrayal of the title character.” (Classicstoday)

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Leonard Bernstein – Mendelssohn: Symphonies No.4 "Italian" & No.5 "Reformation" (1979/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Leonard Bernstein – Mendelssohn: Symphonies No.4 “Italian” & No.5 “Reformation” (1979/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz  | Time – 01:01:24 minutes | 1,15 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download |  Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Leonard Berstein leads the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in this recording of Mendelssohn’s Fourth and Fifth Symphonies, bringing his passionate and fervent interpretations to these Romantic, picturesque works.

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Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: West Side Story (1985/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: West Side Story (1985/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz  | Time – 01:16:21 minutes | 1,33 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

“the great vocal melodies are worthy of voices of the highest calibre…[Troyanos] spans the stylistic dichotomy to perfection in a superb portrayal of Anita. Moreover Bernstein’s sons and daughter speak the dialogue most affectingly….the power of the music is greatly enhanced by the spectacularly wide dynamic range of the recording.” (Penguin Guide)

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Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: Symphony No.3 "Kaddish", Dybbuk Suite No.2 (1978/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: Symphony No.3 “Kaddish”, Dybbuk Suite No.2 (1978/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz  | Time – 56:33 minutes | 947 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Kaddish is Leonard Bernstein’s third symphony. The 1963 symphony is a dramatic work written for a large orchestra, a full choir, a boys’ choir, a soprano soloist and a narrator. The name of the piece, Kaddish, refers to the Jewish prayer that is chanted at every synagogue service for the dead but never mentions “death.”

The symphony is dedicated to the memory of John F. Kennedy who was assassinated on November 22, 1963, just weeks before the first performance of the symphony. Leonard Bernstein wrote the text of the narration himself, but struggled with his own motivation for the aggressiveness of the text. In 2003, after talks with Bernstein shortly before his death, Holocaust survivor Samuel Pisar added a new narration about his personal experiences and how his family suffered and perished in the Holocaust, and his subsequent struggle with his belief. The Bernstein estate allows this version only to be used with Samuel Pisar as recitator.

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Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: Symphony No.1 "Jeremiah" & No.2 "The Age of Anxiety" (1978/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: Symphony No.1 “Jeremiah” & No.2 “The Age of Anxiety” (1978/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz  | Time – 01:00:15 minutes | 1,01 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download |  Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Leonard Bernstein’s association with the Israel Philharmonic began early in his career as a conductor and composer, and in 1977 the orchestra organized a Bernstein Festival to mark the 30th anniversary of their first concert together. The festival lasted two weeks and consisted solely of works composed by Bernstein. Later that same year, in August of 1977, they appeared together at the Berlin Festival, which is when (and where) these live performances were recorded.

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Leonard Bernstein – Beethoven: Mass In D, Op.123 "Missa Solemnis" (1979/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Leonard Bernstein – Beethoven: Mass In D, Op.123 “Missa Solemnis” (1979/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz  | Time – 01:21:11 minutes | 1,55 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

A lovingly crafted and deeply felt performance. Bernstein succeeded superbly in conveying his own intellectually ferocious vision of what the piece truly signifies.

“In his Missa Solemnis, Beethoven grasped heavenward hoping to touch the face of a God he could neither see nor hear, in a supreme effort to bolster his own inner convictions. That’s why you can view the piece from pretty much any faith-led or philosophical standpoint and the music still seems powerful and meaningful. Leonard Bernstein was a cogent and committed arbiter who succeeded superbly in conveying to all who would listen his own intellectually ferocious vision of what the piece truly signifies. Thus, DG’s Galleria reissue of his 1978 Concertgebouw performance is one of the greatest utterances of Bernstein’s Indian summer on the Yellow Label.

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Israel Philharmonic Orchestra & Leonard Bernstein – Tchaikovsky: Romeo & Juliet, Francesca da Rimini (Live) (1979/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Israel Philharmonic Orchestra & Leonard Bernstein – Tchaikovsky: Romeo & Juliet, Francesca da Rimini (Live) (1979/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 43:54 minutes | 842 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download  | Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Leonard Bernstein’s larger-than-life persona combines with Tchaikovsky’s legendary eccentricity for this recording of Romeo & Juliet and Francesca da Rimini. The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra brings to life Bernstein’s vastly contrasting interpretations that tease out the maximum drama in even the most minute details of Tchaikovsky’s writing.

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Israel Philharmonic Orchestra & Leonard Bernstein – Mendelssohn: Symphony No.3, Hebrides Overture (Live) (1980/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Israel Philharmonic Orchestra & Leonard Bernstein – Mendelssohn: Symphony No.3, Hebrides Overture (Live) (1980/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 49:11 minutes | 956 MB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download  | Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

The legendary Leonard Bernstein leads the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in this recording of works by Mendelssohn. The picturesque evocations of Scotland’s rugged landscape in the Symphony No. 3 are delightfully realized in this passionate and emotive interpretation and the highly Romantic Hebridesoverture is beautifully painted by Bernstein and his orchestra.

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Gidon Kremer, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra & Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: Serenade, Fancy Free (Live) (1979/2017) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Gidon Kremer, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra & Leonard Bernstein – Bernstein: Serenade, Fancy Free (Live) (1979/2017)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 58:20 minutes | 1,07 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Master, Official Digital Download  | Front Cover | © Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Among the world’s leading violinists, Gidon Kremer has perhaps pursued the most unconventional career. He was born on 27 February 1947 in Riga, Latvia, and began studying at the age of four with his father and grandfather, both distinguished string players. At the age of seven, he enrolled as a student at Riga Music School where he made rapid progress, and at sixteen he was awarded the First Prize of the Latvian Republic. Two years later he began his studies with David Oistrakh at the Moscow Conservatory. Gidon Kremer went on to win a series of prestigious awards, including prizes in the 1967 Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels and 1969 Montreal International Music Competition and first prize in both the 1969 Paganini and 1970 Tchaikovsky International Competitions.

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Ludwig van Beethoven – Leonard Bernstein / Wiener Philharmoniker – Symphonie Nr. 9 (2005) [Hybrid-SACD] PS3 ISO

Ludwig van Beethoven – Symphonie Nr. 9 “Ode an die Freude”
Leonard Bernstein / Wiener Philharmoniker, Wiener Staatsopernchor / René Kollo
SACD ISO (MCH only): 3,79 GB | Full Artwork | 3% Recovery Info
Label/Cat#: Deutsche Grammophon “Eloquence” # 476 7368 | Country/Year: Germany 2005, 1980
Genre: Classical | Style: Viennese School

I want to add a very quick review, and I hope it will provide some information on this. I’ve had this on RBCD from its original release in the 1980s. I’m very familiar with this performance and it’s been one of my favorites of all time, next to the Bohm (also with Gwyneth Jones) and the last Karajan one.

In fact right after I ordered the SACD of this one (from JPC using the links from SA-CD.net), I pulled out my old RBCD and listened to it several times before someone bought it from me through my Amazon.com store. It was very fresh in my mind. I received my JPC shipment today and I’ve listened carefully to it on SACD.

Since I love the performance, I’m giving that high marks on performance. The playing is so exciting, and the tempi, which is pretty variable (but we all love that about Bernstein’s perfs), always keeps you guessing. The soli are really great, and I love hearing Kurt Moll do this. Dame Jones can sometimes be slightly off pitch but her musicianship outweighs that.

Regarding the sound, I am NOT impressed with what they’ve done to this. I am very disappointed. While the recording still sounds the same, it sounds like someone just hit the “loudness” button on an old amplifier. There’s no gain in clarity or fidelity — in fact it sounds a little more diffuse that it already did. I expected that the original sound recording would be filled with detail given the size of the piece and all the multi-miking that was going on. But nothing extra is elucidated here. The rear channels just have a little bit of echo to add some sense of space. But overall it all sounds wrong. I’m not impressed by the SACD transfer. I am certainly going to check out the CD-Audio layer and report back about how that sounds in comparison to my RBCD. Hopefully, they didn’t mess that up, too.

If you want this performance on SACD, you can’t really go wrong since it at least sounds as good as the RBCD, and it’s cheaper anyway than the RBCD-only version. I’m torn because I love this performance, but I can not rightfully give it high marks for sound. At least it’s not as awful as the SACD job that was done on Karajan’s second recording of the 9th. ~sa-cd.net

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