Author Topic: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)  (Read 19236 times)

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Offline NJ Joe

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Re: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)
« Reply #80 on: January 16, 2014, 05:21:39 PM »
Having read through this thread, I realize that after I'm finished with Giulini my next conductor binge will be Szell.  His late Mozart symphonies are the best I've heard.  His Beethoven symphonies are solid. That's pretty much all I have. 

I recently purchased the Dvorak Slavonic Dances and it is excellent.  Yesterday I ordered the Beethoven and Brahms piano concertos with Leon Fleisher, and am lining up more purchases. The Prokofiev 5/Bartok Concerto for Orchestra and the Wagner Ring music both look tempting. I have an iTunes credit...
« Last Edit: January 16, 2014, 05:23:10 PM by NJ Joe »
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Offline Dax

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Re: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)
« Reply #81 on: January 17, 2014, 02:18:36 AM »
George Szell as composer. Someone at the Art-Music Forum posted a recording of his Piano Quintet op.2 (1911 according to IMSLP when one can find the score + parts). As a by-the-way, the same post reveals a recording of the Bartok Piano Quintet which is pretty impressive and the Antal Dorati Octet which is - unusual.

http://artmusic.smfforfree.com/index.php/topic,623.msg5350.html#msg5350

Offline RebLem

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Re: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)
« Reply #82 on: April 15, 2018, 03:30:20 PM »
A few Szell items that don't seem to appear in the new big so called complete Szell box.


The DECCA Curzon box has a number of Szell items:
 CD 1 consists of two performances conducted by Szell: The Emperor Concerto (LPO), and Tchaikovsky PC 1 (New Sym Orch). CD 3 is of the Mozart PCs 23 & 27 (Wiener Phil). CD 17 has the Brahms PC 1 (LSO).


 The big 24 CD Graffman box has two CDs on which Szell and the Cleveland Orch. appear--the Prokofiev CD which has the PCs 1 & 3 in addition to the Piano Sonata 3, and the Tchaikovksy PC 1.


 In addition to that, I have 9 CDs of Szell performances issued by the Cleveland Orchestra itself. One is a 7 CD set in two boxes issued in 1997 to celebrate the Szell centennial:

 CD 1--Wagner bleeding chunks: Tannhauser Overture (14'13) |Tannhauser: "Dich, teure Halle," Margaret Harshaw, soprano (3'10) |Tristan und Isolde Prelude (11'26) & Liebestod (7'05), Margaret Harshaw, soprano. |Die Gotterdammerung Siegfried's Funeral March & Immolation Scene, Margaret Harshaw, soprano (18'34).
 CD 2--Samuel Barber: Music for a Scene from Shelley (9'00) |Alberto Ginastera: Pampeana 3 (Pastoral Sym.) (19'10) |Henri Dutilleux: Cinq Metaboles (16'05) |William Walton: Violin Concerto with Zino Francescatti (28'27).
 CD 3--Beethoven: Missa Solemnis (76'38)--Saramae Endich, soprano, Florence Kopleff, contralto, Ernst Haefliger, tenor, Ezio Flagello, bass.
 CD 4--Schubert: Octet in F Major (62'34)--Robert Marcellus, clarinet, Myron Bloom, horn, George Goslee, bassoon. For this performance, the string section was enlarged to 17 players. |Berlioz: The Damnation of Faust: 3 excerpts (12'48): Minuet Will o the Wisps (5'56), Interlude, Ballet of the Sylphs (2'42), Rakoczy March (4'10).
 CD 5--Sibelius: En Saga, Op. 9 (18'35) |Symphony 4, Op. 63 (34'07) |Symphony 7 , Op. 105 (19'08)
 CD 6--Mahler: Symphony 9 (75'32)
 CD 7--Interviews with George Szell. 1) with John Culshaw--rec. in London for the BBC, September 1968, 2) with James Fassett, rec. in NYC for WQXR 12 APR 1963 (9'03). 3) with Paul Myers, rec. in Cleveland for CBS 25 MAR 1966 (8'27). 4) with James Fassett, rec. in NYC for WQXR 12 NOV 1965 (4'28).
 The accompanying booklet contains reminiscenes by Robert Shaw, a Donal Henahan NY Times article, and this remarkable 2 paragraphs:
 "Even at home, Mr. Szell's musical integrity would not be silenced. He would sometimes stop and correct his wife's casual whistling, insisting that as long as she was going to whistle, she might as well get the tempo and pitch right.
 "Mrs. Szell, the former Helene Schulz of Prague, whom he married in 1938 in GLasgow when he was conductor of the Scottish National Orchestra, cultivated forbearance and a dry wit during her years with Mr. Szell. She needled him about his methodical habits and mania for instructing others."


 
I also own another 2 CD set from the Cleveland Orchestra of performances from his last tour with the Cleveland Orchestra, to Tokyo in 1970, put out by the Cleveland Orch.
 
CD 1--Weber: Oberon Overture (9'11) |Mozart: Sym. 40 in G Minor, K. 550 (26'22).


 CD 2--Sibelius: Symphony 2 in D Major, Op. 43 (42'20) |Berlioz: The Damnation of Faust--Rakoczy March (4'21) |Interview with Pierre Boulez about George Szell and the 1970 Tokyp tour. (19'31). The booklet contains lots of b&w pics, and a long article by Eugene Kilinsky, the Cleveland Orch. librarian (1968-85).
"Don't drink and drive; you might spill it."--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father.

Offline RebLem

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Re: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)
« Reply #83 on: April 15, 2018, 09:26:41 PM »
My discography of Cleveland recordings lists only one Don Juan conducted by Szell (March 1957). Maybe you've seen or heard a live version? He did record Till three times!
Sarge
Actually, the first recording Szell ever made is not attributed to him.  He was an assistant to Richard Strauss when Strauss was scheduled to record Don Juan.  Strauss was late and the musicians were waiting, so Szell stepped in to start the performance.  He did the first have of the work when Strauss finally arrived.  Strauss conducted the second half and then listened to the already recorded first half, and said it sounded fine to him, and approved its going out to the public under his name.
"Don't drink and drive; you might spill it."--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father.

Offline RebLem

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Re: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)
« Reply #84 on: April 15, 2018, 10:00:01 PM »
Nonsense,  that merely gives you special expertise.

But don't slight the non Sony Szell;  there is his evil twin brother EMI Szell.   The recording I have from the evil twin brother is Des Knaben Wunderhorn, with Schwarzkopf and Fischer-Dieskau as the soloists--which alone should tell you how good it is.
You don't have to be from Ohio to think Szell was one of the greatest conductors who ever lived.  I am from Chicago, and I have called myself a Szellot since the late 1960's.  His cycle of the Beethoven symphonies is one of the essentials (one word of warning--the second movement of his 7th Symphony is the worst performance of a single movement in his set.  I especially like his 6-9, (except for the Seventh's 2nd movement).  I never particularly liked his Mozart with Serkin, but his Mozart with Fleisher (PC 25), and with Robert Casadesus are excellent.  That first 6 of the Haydn London Symphonies is good, too, and his Brahms PCs with both Fleisher and Serkin (the Fleisher is better).  I like his cycle of the Brahms symphonies, but mostly for his Third, and for the two overtures and the Haydn Variations, which I think are the best recordings of those works.  His Schumann Symphony cycle is one of the essential ones, as is his CD of the last two Schubert symphonies.  The Dvorak  7, 8, & 9 are excellent, esp. 7 & 8.  His Prokofiev PCs 1 & 3 with Graffman are essential, as is the disc with R Serkin of the Bartok PC 1 and the Prokofiev PC 4 for left hand.  A CD is out with the Prokofiev 5th symphony and a Bartok Concerto for Orchestra--this last has an alternative ending authorized by Bartok which no other conductor uses, so it is essential to a complete Bartok collection.  And then, I have another one of the Grieg Peer Gynt Suites, Bizet's L'Alresienne Suit 1, and Mussorgsky's Pictures.  Just think about Szell and the Great Gate of Kiev, and your mouth should water.
« Last Edit: April 16, 2018, 01:39:26 PM by RebLem »
"Don't drink and drive; you might spill it."--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father.

Offline RebLem

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« Last Edit: April 15, 2018, 10:06:45 PM by RebLem »
"Don't drink and drive; you might spill it."--J. Eugene Baker, aka my late father.

Offline vandermolen

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Re: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)
« Reply #86 on: April 24, 2018, 12:44:19 PM »
You might want to update your Churchill quote .....   he actually said ....    "Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with to no loss of enthusiasm" .   

Related to this, he also said "Success is not final; Failure is not fatal; It is the courage to continue that counts".

Another favourite is  "If you are going through Hell,   keep going!"   

I've only just seen this nine years late! Sorry about that. However your version of the quote doesn't, in itself, make sense. Not sure where I got mine from but think I'll stick with it.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline PerfectWagnerite

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Re: The Art of George Szell (György Széll)
« Reply #87 on: April 24, 2018, 04:41:47 PM »

 
I also own another 2 CD set from the Cleveland Orchestra of performances from his last tour with the Cleveland Orchestra, to Tokyo in 1970, put out by the Cleveland Orch.
 
CD 1--Weber: Oberon Overture (9'11) |Mozart: Sym. 40 in G Minor, K. 550 (26'22).


 CD 2--Sibelius: Symphony 2 in D Major, Op. 43 (42'20) |Berlioz: The Damnation of Faust--Rakoczy March (4'21) |Interview with Pierre Boulez about George Szell and the 1970 Tokyp tour. (19'31). The booklet contains lots of b&w pics, and a long article by Eugene Kilinsky, the Cleveland Orch. librarian (1968-85).
These are pretty common and I think any Szell fan should own these. The Sibelius 2nd is likely one of the most stupendous recordings of this work I have heard. The transition to the final mvt, those trumpet calls, and the body of the strings are all demonstration class in orchestral execution.