Constantin Silvestri

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RE: Constantin Silvestri

I am glad that you found that interesting.

My first experience of Silvestri was at an "industrial Concert" given by the London Philharmonic Orchestra at the Albert Hall in the late fifties. The programme was nothing if not diverse,Schubert,Bach(Brandenburg Concerto No 3) Haydn(Symphony No 99) Khachaturian(Gayeneh) and the Mussorgsky-Ravel Pictures at an Exhibition.  He made a record of Dvorak's 8th Symphony with the LPO around that time.

He had a fair-sized discography with HMV and Columbia before he went to Bournemouth. I have LPs of him conducting the Paris Conservatoire (Debussy,Ravel,Dukas and Saint-Saens) and the Vienna Philharmonic (Prokofiev Enesco and Liszt). Besides the two Liszt pieces mentioned he made records of the last three Tchaikovsky symphonies ( the 5th got good reviews but the other two were not so enthusiastically received) with the Philharmonia. He also recorded Stravinsky with them(Le Chant du Rossignol) and accompanied Menuhin in the Beethoven Violin Concerto with the same orchestra.

He accompanied Leonid Kogan in the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with the Paris Conservatoire Orchestra. His recording of the Beethoven Concerto with the same soloist and orchestra was particularly valued and a mint copy could have sold for £800! I got £50 for a copy that had been in my mother's collection which meant that it got a fair old battering!

Returning to Bournemouth,since I was abroad for most of his tenure I only had the opportunity to attend three concerts which he conducted, Messaien and Mendelssohn(Symphony No 2 -Hymn of Praise), another mixed bag of Brahms, Mendelssohn (Scottish Symphony) ,Prokofiev Piano Concerto No 3 (soloist Agustin Anievas) and Khachaturian, and a Beethoven night with Ingrid Haebler playing the 4th Piano Concerto. Ms Haebler was at the height of her fame at that point having just recorded all of the Mozart concertos with the London Symphony Orchestra for Philips.

The Culverhouse interview was interesting in that he said that Silvestri had no inhibitions or pre-conceptions about conducting British music. He just looked at the score and felt "this is the way it should be done"  He had rehearsed "The Dream of Gerontius" with the Orchestra but was too ill to conduct the performance and it was taken over at his request by Charles Groves. Silvestri died shortly after. A sad end to an illustrious career

 

 

Paul Davies
RE: Constantin Silvestri

That recording of Dvorak 8 is a goodie! (although I probably marginally prefer Kertesz!

P

RE: Constantin Silvestri
RE: Constantin Silvestri

I just recently remastered an archive Bournemouth S.O. concert broadcast of Bruckner 5 from Brighton.  Brilliant.

RE: Constantin Silvestri

His recordings of Tchaikovsky & Beethoven's Violin Concertos w/ Kogan (a great, underrated violinist) conducting Orchestre de la Societes du Conservatoire are simply outstanding. The edition I have comes from the Artist Profile Series (EMI), a double cd featuring Leonid Kogan but it seems those recordings are out of the catalogue for long. Grab it if you bump into one, it includes one of the best Lalo's Symphonie espagnole (5 movements version)available and a good reading of the Brahms' VC, both w/ Kondrashin & PO.

Silvestri Haydn Recording

Certainly enjoyable - it is Franz Josef Haydn's Symphony 27, not Michael Haydn's. When Silvestri recorded it he and Supraphon believed it was a symphony by Haydn recently discovered in a manuscript in a Rumanian castle, but when the LP came out it was pointed out that it was a symphony already known and described in Robbins Landons book - see Gramophone letters in 1957 and 58.  I think it was the premiere recording though.

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