ARC-114/15 // Klemperer in Los Angeles

Live recordings 1934-1939


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Otto Klemperer

Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra

  • Verdi: I Vespri Siciliani (Ov.) (rec. 1 January 1934)Beethoven: Symphony No. 5 (rec. 1 January 1934)Wagner:
  • Wagner: Die Meistersinger (Ov.) (recJanuary 1934)
  • Schoenberg/Brahms: Piano Quartet in G minor (World Premiere) (rec. 7 May 1938)
  • Schoenberg/Handel: Quartet Concerto with the Kolisch Quartet (rec. 7 May 1938)
  • Strang: Intermezzo (rec. February 1939)
  • Gershwin: Prelude No. 2 (rec. 8 Sept. 1937)

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After his emigration in 1933 Klemperer took over the direction of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra until 1939. During this time he also studied composition with Arnold Schoenberg. Thus the Schoenberg recordings on this CD, despite their poor sound quality, are truly historic documents. Schoenberg´s orchestration of the G minor Quartet was often cited as Brahms´ “Fifth Symphony“.

„In the normal course of things, a set of recordings as technically wretched as these would be more or less unissuable. And yet the recordings really are a peep behind the curtain of history. The 1934 Los Angeles account of Beethoven´s Fifth Symphony holds the greatest interest, a fierce , noble and by the end orchestrally incandescent reading ... „He drove, as in a huge chariot, to the highest plains of expression“ was how one young man described Klemperer´s conducting at this period. One senses that here.“ (Gramophone)


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