Performers out of fashion

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RE: Performers out of fashion

Hermastersvoice wrote:

I would be interested in view of my fellow forum members as to why some performers go out of fashion. At the moment I have a bee in my bonnet over the fact that it is next to impossible to get Karl Richter's Bach cantata recordings anywhere on CD; the series has fallen out of the DG catalogue (despite the fact that secondhands are selling at £300 on the internet!).

I have a similar problem with Sandor Vegh's recordings with Camerata Academica. His recordings are available but it is difficult to track reviews - on Gramophone anyway.

These performers were both prominent conductors at one stage (to me they still sound fresh which is obviously why I have an issue).

Why do they fall out of fashion - have our ears changed?

Hi HMV. Have you had any luck finding a copy of that Bach cantatas set? If not, hang in there. I was also on a quest to find them and as it turns out a fellow music friend (who I met on another forum) had the set and wasn't keen on them and offered to sell them to me for a very, very modest price--nothing like those online Amazon prices! Does any online music shop/business have them available as downloads perhaps?

I've been wanting to get ahold of some of those Sandor Vegh recordings with the quartet. I'm not familiar with Camerata Academica though?

Personally, I like to hear different-styled interpretations of works...varies depending upon my mood. It's sad to see things becoming NLAs. Happily Arkivmusic is there to help! Have you ordered from them before? I have and they were very nice to deal with and I know others who also give them a "thumbs up". Good luck!

Best wishes,

Petra

RE: Performers out of fashion

It is possible, of course, that there is no Gramophone review because certain discs were not submitted.

I have come across Chandos recordings that have been with held because, I think, they have received poor reviews elsewhere.

Also, Gramophone tends to review discs available only in the UK.

RE: Performers out of fashion

Hi Petra,

I managed to get my hands on the first 3 volumes, but volumes 4 and 5 are missing entirely. I don't really know where to go but will try arkivmusic.

Funny, that you are chasing the Vegh Quartet - so am I. Their stereo traversal of the Beethoven Quartets are praised by all reviewers ("furtwanglerian") but have been out of the catalogue for quite some time.

I have thoroughly enjoyed Vegh's and the Camerata Academica's Mozart, Haydn and Bartok on Orfeo. I don't think there's anybody to touch them in this repertoire. You can almost hear how his young orchestral players are on the edge of their seats to please the maestro.

RE: Performers out of fashion

Hi HMV!

Regarding the Vegh Quartet: small world isn't it! Hopefully we won't be both bidding against each other on eBay! LOL ;-)

Thanks for your further thoughts on the other Vegh recordings too.

I just took a quickie look on both Amazon US and UK for you and noticed that they at least have volumes 4 and 5 of the Bach cantatas available as MP3 downloads (if you're willing to compromise a bit here--hard I know!).

Besides the Vegh Beethoven quartets, I've been on the hunt for Previn's Vaughan Williams set...should have grabbed that one when I had a chance! Oh, well, patience will (hopefully) eventually pay! :-)

Best wishes,

Petra

 

 

RE: Performers out of fashion

Dear HMV and Petra, the Vegh Quartet's version of 1952 of Beethoven's String Quartets is still available by the Canadian label Music & Arts. It's not so good as the stereo on Auvidis (or Teldec, or Valois) and, definitely the recording is a kind of disadvantage you should not ignore. However, that's why compromises exist. Fnac (the French retailer) has few used individual CDs from Auvidis, most at not so attractive prices.

Their interpretation on Beethoven's Quartets are definitely significant as a quite "modern" view compare to the very straightforward and quite traditional Hungarian Quartet of 1953 on Emi, where even the fast Beethoven's metronome markings are followed to the letter, let alone the spirit. If you don't have the Czech Talich Quartet (if it's still available), try it. It's a "middle of the road" solution, encompassing the above two almost opposite interpretations. Finally, the new Czech and brilliant Prazak Quartet has released what constitutes the latest definitive complete set of the Quartets, on the best Chamber Music label, namely Praga Digitals, in superb SACD sound (not easily available too, I'm afraid)

Good exploration and hunting,

Parla

 

RE: Performers out of fashion

Vegh Quartet made many marvelous recordings for Valois,as did the Danish Quartet. The French record label Valois was very much a one man band......Michel Bernstein.I was shocked to read that since the death of Bernstein in 2006 the whereabouts of the masters Bernstein produced for Valois is unknown!
I find this hard to believe,but just in case if a Valois LP comes my way I grab it,unfortunately they are very thin on the ground.

RE: Performers out of fashion

Ooh! Sad story about the Valois masters! And sorry to hear of the death of Mr. Bernstein. History Man, I will do my best to file your story somewhere in the dark reaches of my brain should I ever stumble across any recordings on this label [The question being: will I be able to find the key to that particular "filing cabinet" when the need should arise?! LOL].

Parla,

Thanks for the further info. BTW, Music & Arts have their own website which is easy to find and one can order recordings directly from them (though with shipping charges it might be cheaper for some of you to order them from a European website). If I recall, they are actually an American company based in I think Oregon? You might be thinking of the West Hill Radio Archives which they also produce?

I've heard from various sources in the past that their earlier recordings of the Beethoven quartets are supposed to be a bit better than their later set? Is this what you and HMV have either both heard?

And perhaps HMV, you are on a quest for a certain Japanese EMI pressing/edition that I have just recently read about? :-)

Best, P.

RE: Performers out of fashion

No, Petra, I strongly believe the second recording of the Vegh is much better not that much because of the interpretation but mostly owing to the very good (in some respects impressive) recording, which can make full justice to these unique works, whose subtlety and sublime nature cannot be served well in compromised recordings. These works need the optimum of the original clarity of tone, the right pitch, the correct dynamics and a much cleaner recording, so that you may be able to follow the four voices of the Strings.

Parla

RE: Performers out of fashion

If you are looking for Richter Bach performances there is a useful 10CD set of the Passions, the B minor Mass and some Easter Cantatas on Universal's Eloquence label which is not marketed directly here but available from European sites.

I got it from Amazon.de for 20 euros plus postage for example. (Other vendors are available!)

There is a lot of other good stuff on Eloquence - worth searcing via Google.

Hope that helps.

Macsporran
RE: Performers out of fashion

Willem van Otterloo is a conductor not so much out of fashion but more like sunk without trace.After hearing his brilliant recording of Symphonie Fantastique with the Berlin Philharmonic,the first of three recordings of the Berlioz masterpiece that was said to be a van Otterloo speciality,I cannot help thinking there is no justice in the world.
A recording that does not show its sixty plus years one bit but it is Otterloo's interpretation that steals the show.He out Beecham's Beecham.
I have managed to acquire the two piano concertos of Liszt with Cor de Groot and the Frank Symphony as well as Symphonie Fantastique by this great conductor,all on LP.I believe there is a box set of CDs devoted to Willem van Otterloo. A set I would heartily recommend to anyone with a serious interest of orchestral recordings of the second half of the 20th century.

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