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Charles Munch – Boston Symphony Orchestra 1958-1962 (5 DVDs)

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BEETHOVEN Die Geschöpfe des Prometheus (extracts)
Symphonies Nos.4 & 5
1959, 1960 & 1961 • ICAD 5016

HAYDN Symphony No.98 • BRUCKNER Symphony No.7
1958 & 1960 • ICAD 5028

MENDELSSOHN Symphonies No.3 ‘Scottish’ & No.4 ‘Italian’
MOZART Masonic Funeral Music
1958 & 1959 • ICAD 5039

SCHUMANN Overture to ‘Genoveva’ • Symphony No.2
SCHUBERT Symphony No.5
1959, 1961 & 1962 • ICAD 5052

HANDEL Water Music Suite arr. Harty
MOZART Symphonies No.36 ‘Linz’ & No.38 ‘Prague’
1958, 1959 & 1960 • ICAD 5057

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This material features some of the earliest televised concerts with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and their charismatic Music Director, Charles Munch. The footage has been restored using the greatest care and state-of-the-art techniques and is of exceptional musical interest and historical value. Filmed at Harvard University’s Sanders Theatre, an intimate venue with splendid acoustics enhanced by wood panelling, Munch’s interpretations are characteristically energetic and full of flair, while his rapport with the Boston Symphony Orchestra is obvious. This set represents the most extensive video archive of performances by Charles Munch.

ICAB 5130


LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN 1770–1827

         Die Geschöpfe des Prometheus, op.43 (extracts)

1      Ouverture: Adagio — Allegro molto con brio5.30

2      No.5: Adagio — Andante quasi allegretto8.43

3      No.16: Finale: Allegretto — Allegro molto5.47

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 8 March 1960

        

        Symphony No.4 in B flat major, op.60

4      I      Adagio — Allegro vivace10.53

5      II     Adagio9.14

6      III   Allegro vivace4.48

7      IV   Allegro ma non troppo5.39

Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 18 April 1961

 

        Symphony No.5 in C minor, op.67

8      I      Allegro con brio6.42

9      II     Andante con moto11.37

10    III   Allegro —5.11

11    IV   Allegro8.41

Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 3 November 1959

 

Boston Symphony Orchestra

CHARLES MUNCH

ICAD 5016

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JOSEPH HAYDN 1732–1809

Symphony No.98 in B flat major Hob.I:98

1 I Adagio – Allegro 7.36

2 II Adagio cantabile 7.09

3 III Menuetto: Allegro 3.58

4 IV Finale: Presto – Più moderato 6.29

Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 18 October 1960

 

ANTON BRUCKNER 1824–1896

Symphony No.7 in E major

5 I Allegro moderato 18.02

6 II Adagio 18.12

7 III Scherzo 7.54

8 IV Finale 7.55

Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 18 February 1958

 

Boston Symphony Orchestra

CHARLES MUNCH

ICAD 5028

 

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FELIX MENDELSSOHN 1809–1847

 

Symphony No.3 in A minor op.56 ‘Scottish’

1 I           Andante con moto – Allegro un poco agitato – Assai animato     13.27

2 II          Vivace non troppo                                                                                          3.44

3 III         Adagio                                                                                                                 8.41

4 IV        Allegro vivacissimo – Allegro maestoso assai                                      9.14

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 1 December 1959

Symphony No.4 in A major op.90 ‘Italian’

5 I           Allegro vivace                                                                                                   7.49

6 II          Andante con moto                                                                                         6.08

7 III         Con moto moderato                                                                                      6.18

8 IV        Saltarello: Presto                                                                                             6.26

Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 4 February 1958

 

BONUS

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART 1756–1791

9 Masonic Funeral Music K477/479a                                                                       8.24

Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 7 April 1959

Boston Symphony Orchestra

CHARLES MUNCH

ICAD 5039

 

 

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ROBERT SCHUMANN 1810–1856

 1 Overture to ‘Genoveva’ op.81                                                10.37

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 18 April 1961

 

FRANZ SCHUBERT 1797–1828

 

Symphony No.5 in B flat major D485

2 I           Allegro                                                                                  5.12

3 II          Andante con moto                                                          11.02

4 III         Menuetto: Allegro molto                                             4.13

5 IV        Allegro vivace                                                                    6.06

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 27 February 1962

 

ROBERT SCHUMANN

 Symphony No.2 in C major op.61

6 I           Sostenuto assai – Allegro, ma non troppo             11.27

7 II          Scherzo: Allegro vivace                                                  6.43

8 III         Adagio espressivo                                                           11.05

9 IV        Allegro molto vivace                                                       8.33

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 7 April 1959

 

Boston Symphony Orchestra

CHARLES MUNCH

ICAD52

 

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GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL 1685–1759

Water Music Suite arr. Harty

1 I Allegro                                                                                                            3.09

2 II Air                                                                                                                   3.54

3 III Allegro deciso                                                                                           3.18

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 12 April 1960

 

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART 1756–1791

Symphony No.36 in C major K425 ‘Linz’

4 I Adagio – Allegro spiritoso                                                                       8.24

5 II Poco adagio                                                                                                 8.26

6 III Menuetto & Trio                                                                                      3.45

7 IV Finale: Presto                                                                                            6.38

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 8 April 1958

Symphony No.38 in D major K504 ‘Prague’

8 I Adagio – Allegro                                                                                         11.17

9 II Andante                                                                                                       9.30

10 III Finale: Presto                                                                                          3.49

 Recorded: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, 3 November 1959

Boston Symphony Orchestra

CHARLES MUNCH

ICAD5057

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Grade 
Agnieszka M
04/Feb/2015

[...]It’s admirable that ICA’s Legacy series preserves on DVD historical music-making that languishes on the shelves in outmoded formats.[...]

Huntley Dent

Fanfare- November 2014

    Grade 
    Agnieszka M
    04/Feb/2015

    [...]To my ear the finest performances here include Haydn's 98th, which Munch takes in a more Romantic vein than we would now be used to – an approach that pays dividends in the luscious string sound in the Adagio. Munch is ideally suited to the playful finale. The two Beethoven symphonies are also very successful, particularly the 5th, where Munch's driving momentum is strengthened not undermined by flexible tempi. The performance of Schumann's 2nd is very memorable.
    Anyone interested in the history of conducting should think seriously about this set. It documents a powerful and exciting performer in a relatively unfamiliar repertoire. [...]

    Jose Luis Bermudez

    Classical Net- October 2014

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