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One of the most poetic and lyrical performances
Sir Thomas Beecham's 1958 EMI recording with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra holds its own against any competition, in my opinion. Beecham's interpretation is certainly the most poetic even if his orchestra does not match the precision of the LSO. Steven Staryk's violin solos, the voice of the lady Scheherazade, are magnificently soaring in their lyricism. And excitement is here in full order, especially in the big closing numbers. As heard in the HDTT DXD Redux transfer, the sound quality is excellent, demonstrating that EMI's recording engineer Christopher Parker was also doing an excellent job in Kingsway Hall. Another among the trio of great Scheherezade recordings from the golden age of stereo available at HDTT, all in excellent sound. The other two? Monteux/LSO and Ansermet/OSR. One needs them all because you will learn something different from each.
Rapturous and Lively.
Excellent, vibrant and classic interpretation of the Russian warhorse, nicely refurbished. A keeper!
NO PONEN LA FECHA O AÑO DE LA REMASTERIZACIÓN
Hola!: Por favor. ¿Por qué no ponen el año en que HDTT transfiere o remasteriza esta grabación?. Lo único que consta es que fue grabado por EMI en 1958. Gracias.
The gold standard...
As thoroughly covered by "drdanfee" this recording was THE go-to version of Scheherazade for many years after it came out. In 1959 I owned a first-edition LP of same which I'm sure I wore out. When Stokowski's Phase 4 version came out I expected it to eclipse this version. It was good...but it didn't. These days "some" say Muti's Philadelphia version is top of the list...it's good...but Beecham is still the winner. In the '70's Franklin Mint included this in their 100 greatest recordings of all-time and after auditioning many, this one deserves that accolade. It was this work that earned Rimsky-Kosakov to be included in the short list of greatest orchestrators (with Berlioz & Ravel) and this recording amply demonstrates why. After more than 60 years it's still "the gold standard." Thanks HDTT.
A warm, brilliant (Redux) reading from Sir Thomas Beecham
The Redux remastering is superb. As a performance this one has been an A-list keeper since it's release on golden age vinyl in 1956 stereo. (Plus a mono edition ... that's how new stereo was in those days) Though derived from original analogue sources few will complain about this edition. Soloist is Steven Staryk, a top-notch Canadian violinist whom Sir Thomas recruited to be Concertmaster of the Royal Philharmonic (Beecham's own hand-picked orchestra during his lifetime). My own ears tell me that nobody since Staryk has come close to equaling his high-flying fiddle work. Since I have never found documentation of exactly what fiddle Staryk was playing during this era, I cannot say what I think the physical instrument might have contributed to Staryk's beautiful music-making. The RPO does so well and is captured so well that only the best of surround sound recordings might dare to challenge this one as a benchmark. That of course would assume the surround sound challenge involves a world-class orchestra with a Concertmaster or other soloist plus a conductor, gifted enough and hard-working enough to pose any threat of being real competition. Herbert von Karajan in Berlin does a very good job in this music, though he is so different from the musicians on this Redux release that, as the old saying goes, 'Comparisons would be odious.' Just listen to the magical occasion at hand here, and let everyone else fade into the background for three-quarters of an hour. If you want to relish more of Staryk's uniquely persuasive solo work, check out his fiddling as Beecham's soloist for the golden age stereo release of Strauss' Ein Heldenleben. I believe Staryk has also released concerto recordings of Shostakovich and Prokofiev. Perhaps any attentive listener cannot avoid a wave of regret that Maestro Staryk was not asked to record a whole lot more of the extant fiddle repertoire. Thanks to all involved for making this special bechmark reading available in the best possible contemporary sonics.
Title: Rimsky-Korsakov Scheherazade symphonic suite
Artist(s): Sir Thomas Beecham Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Soloist, Violin – Steven Staryk
Recording Info: Recorded by EMI Records 1958
1 The Sea And Sinbad's Ship 10:04
2 The Story Of The Kalender Prince 12:02
3 The Young Prince And The Young Princess 10:42
4 The Festival Of Baghdad - The Sea - The Ship Goes To Pieces On A Rock Surmounted By A Bronze Warrior 12:51
Total Time: 45:41