Damian's 78s (and a few early LPs)

Historic recordings remastered. Not a sales list!

Albert Ketelbey – Massenet’s Angelus and Luigini’s The Voice of the Bells; Hamilton Harty – Wagner’s Die Meistersinger Overture, overtures to Stanford’s Shamus O’Brien and Rossini’s Barber of Seville

Now we head back to the early 1920s for three English Columbia acoustic discs, featuring two of Columbia’s regular conductors: Albert W Ketelbey and Hamilton Harty. The reason for grouping these together is a little confusion in the catalogues as to who is conducting on one of the records.

Massenet – Angelus from “Scenes Pittoresques”
Luigini – The Voice of the Bells – Reverie
Court Symphony Orchestra, Albert W Ketelbey

Massenet – Angelus – Court SO, Ketelbey

Luigini – The Voice of the Bells – Court SO, Ketelbey

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia 974
Matrices AX 364-1, 360-1 (4721, 4717)
Recorded 11th and 6th March 1924, London
Available from June 1924 to July 1929

Plays at 78rpm, though stated as 80rpm on labels.

Wagner – The Meistersingers – Overture
Court Symphony Orchestra, Hamilton Harty

Wagner – Meistersinger – Court SO, Harty

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia 976
Matrices AX 361-1, 362-1 (4718, 4719)
Recorded 7th March 1924, London
Available from June 1924 to August 1932

This recording is unabridged. The first side begins at 80rpm and progresses to 81rpm, while the second side remains around 80rpm.

On the record label, the performance is credited simply to the Court Symphony Orchestra, and in Columbia’s 1925 catalogue it is listed under the section for Court Symphony Orchestra conducted by Albert W. Ketelbey. However, Ronald Taylor’s discography of 12” Columbia records 1906-1930 notes the conductor as “Harty (Listed in the catalogues as Ketelbey)” Another Court Symphony Orchestra recording, from 4th March 1924 (record 980, matrices AX 356-2, AX 359-1), was issued in the UK with no conductor credited, and appears in the same section of the 1925 catalogue under Ketelbey’s name but American issues gave Harty’s name.

I’m inclined to accept the attribution of Harty as the conductor, partly because of the accelerando at the end of the overture which is not unusual for him.

Stanford – Shamus O’Brien – Overture
Rossini – Barber of Seville – Overture
Hallé Orchestra, Hamilton Harty

Stanford – Shamus O’Brien – Hallé, Harty

Rossini – Barber of Seville – Hallé, Harty

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia L 1428
Matrices 75078-1, 75080-2
Recorded 20th April 1922, London
Available from July 1922 to February 1928

Both sides play at 80rpm.

The overtures are both abridged. The Stanford is only slightly trimmed, but the Barber has been rather butchered to fit on one side.

Carmen excerpts: 1920 Columbia abridged recording; highlights on LP from Walter Goehr and Erasmo Ghiglia; orchestral and choral excerpts – Weingartner, Pitt, Maclean, Ronald, Sabajno, Matacena, Mackenzie-Rogan, Weissmann, Coates; excerpts from 1911 Pathé recording; other vocal excerpts in French, English, German, Italian and Russian

It has taken a long time to prepare this update, which focuses on Bizet’s Carmen. The centrepiece is the abridged 1920 Columbia set on 10” records. This is complemented by two LPs of excerpts from the 1950s, and then a wide selection of 78s of orchestral and vocal excerpts, whether in more or less their original forms, or as “gems.” The sung languages range from French, via Italian, English and German to Russian. Where Carmen excerpts occupy only one side of a record, the other side is, as usual, given here too. In some cases additional recordings by the same performer are included.

Complete or substantial excerpts:

Bizet – Carmen (abridged)
Orchestra of La Scala, Milan
sung in Italian

1. Prelude
2. Chorus of Cigarette Girls – Suono la campana
3. Habanera – E l’amore
4. Duet – Ah, mi parla di lei
5. Duet – Mio vegga ancor
6. Seguidilla – Presso il bastion di Siviglia
7. Duet – Carmen quest’ ufficiale
8. Bohemian Song – All’ udir
9. Bohemian Song – Or ben Pastia desia
10. Toreador Song – Part 1 (Con voi ber)
11. Toreador Song – Part 2
12. Quintette – Part 1 – Noi s’lia in vista un bell’ affar
13. Quintette – Part 2 – Certo la cosa
14. Duet – Alfin sei qui
15. Duet – Al quartier
16. Flower Song – Il fior
17. Duet – No, tu non m’ami
18. Duet and Finale (Part 1) – No, piu non ti voglio
19. Finale, Act 2 (Part 2) – Dubbio non c’e
20. Trio – Part 1 – Io ci veda
21. Trio – Part 2 – Invan par evitar
22. Ensemble – E nostr’ affar il doganier
23. Aria – Io dico
24. Recit & Duet Part 1 – Ma non m’inganno
25. Duet Part 2 – Per amante ell’ avveva
26. Finale Act 3, Part 1 – Ola! Jose
27. Finale Act 3, Part 2 – Ah! bada a te
28. Finale Act 3, Part 3 – Ah! paventa
29. Duet – Se tu m’ami
30. Duet – Sei tu?
31. Finale Act 4, Part 1 – Piu non m’ama il tuo cor?
32. Finale Act 4, Part 2 – No davver

Fanny Anitua, mezzo-soprano – Carmen
Luigi Bolis, tenor – Don José
Ines Maria Ferraris, soprano – Micaëla
Cesare Formichi, baritone – Escamillo
Lina Garavaglia, soprano – Mercédès
Rosa Garavaglia, soprano – Frasquita
Enrico Spada, bass – Zuniga
Luigi Baldassare, bass – Il Dancairo/Moralès
Carlo Paltrinieri, tenor –  Il Remendado
La Scala Chorus

Mediafire link for Bizet – Carmen – acoustic Columbia – Acts 1 & 2
Mediafire link for Bizet – Carmen – acoustic Columbia – Acts 3 & 4
(No longer available due to bogus copyright claim)

(These are zip files – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Columbia D 5582-97
Matrices 42436, 42381, 42384, 42427, 42398, 42416, 42431, 42412, 42411, 42382, 42383, 42395, 42396, 42413, 42414, 42415, 42420, 42429, 42430, 42406, 42388, 42424, 42426, 42392, 42397, 42389, 42434, 42421, 42385, 42432, 42435, 42433
Recorded 1920

Play at 82.6rpm (1, 19, 31-2), 78rpm (2-5, 7, 10-14, 16-18, 21, 24), 81.6rpm (6, 8, 9, 15, 22-3, 28, 30), 79.6rpm (20, 25-6), 83.4rpm (27), 80.9rpm (29)

Sides in order of matrix number:
2, 10, 11, 3, 29, 21, 26, 24, 12, 13, 25, 5, 20, 9, 8, 14, 15, 16, 6, 17, 28, 22, 23, 4, 18, 19, 7, 30, 32, 27, 31, 1

This recording, though of course publicised as the complete opera, is heavily cut, with substantial omissions at the start of Acts 1 and 4, among others. It’s still an interesting performance, though Luigi Bolis (Don José) tends to pronounce Carmen so that it sounds like Carmeng!

The first record in my copy of this set is broken, and I’ve done my best to repair it for this transfer.

Bizet – Carmen – Concert performance
Orchestra del Teatro Comunale, Firenze, Erasmo Ghiglia

1. Act 1. Habanera: L’amour est un oiseau rebelle
2. Parlez-moi de ma mère
3. Seguidilla: Près des remparts de Séville
4. Act 2. Chanson bohème (abridged, solo)
5. Toreador Song: Votre toast
6. Flower Song: Le fleur que tu m’avais jetée
7. Act 3. Card Scene
8. C’est des contrabandiers… Je dis que rien ne m’épouvante
9. Duet Escamillo/ Don José
10. Act 4. Si tu m’aimes, Carmen… C’est toi! C’est moi!

Franca Sacchi, mezzo-soprano  – Carmen
Eddie Ruhl, tenor – Don José
Alberta Hopkins, soprano – Micaela
Antonio Boyer, baritone – Escamillo

Mediafire link for Bizet – Carmen – concert performance – Ghiglia

(No longer available due to bogus copyright claim)

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Saga XID 5264
Matrices XID 5264A, 5264B
Recorded 1950s
Play at about 32.7rpm (-2%)

The record label notes “First issued 1965”, but this is likely to have been recorded in the 1950s. Ghiglia is credited as Ghili, and Ruhl as Rhul on the record sleeve. The soloists sing in French, but the chorus sings in Italian throughout.

Bizet – Carmen – Opera in four Acts – a concise version
Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, Walter Goehr
(Performers credited on label as:
Orchestra and Chorus of The Opera Classica Society of New York. William Stellar, conductor)

1. Prelude Act 1 (without Coda)
2. Habanera (abridged)
3. Parle-moi de ma mère (abridged)
4. Seguidilla (tenor is a bar behind in final section)
5. Act 2. Chanson bohème
6. Toreador Song (omits L’amour interchange at end)
7. Flower Song
8. Act 3. Smugglers’ march
9. Card Song and Trio
10. Micaela’s aria
11. Act 3. Finale
12. Intermezzo Act 4
13. Act 4. Finale (abridged)

Cora Canne Meyer, Carmen
Leo Larsen, Don José
Corry van Bekkum, Micaëla
Gerard Holthaus, Escamillo
Rick van Veen, Frasquita
Betty de Jong, Mercédès

Mediafire link for Bizet – Carmen – concise version – Goehr

(No longer available due to bogus copyright claim)

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

The Classics Club Rembrandt X64
(Originally issued by The Musical Masterpiece Society)
Matrices X64A1P, X64B1P
Recorded 1953-4
Reviewed in July 1954
Play at about 33.6rpm

This Classics Club reissue is slightly later than the original MMS issue.

Orchestral:

Wagner – Die Walküre – Magic Fire Scene
Bizet – Carmen – Overture and Intermezzo Act IV
Grand Symphony Orchestra, Felix Weingartner

Wagner – Die Walküre – Magic Fire – Weingartner

Bizet – Carmen – Overture, Intermezzo IV – Weingartner

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia L 1097 (pale blue label)
Matrices 36914-2, 36916-1
Recorded 23rd March 1914
Available from September 1916 to May 1928
(Previously available on D17724 from September 1914 to October 1916)
Play at about 79rpm (though speed is a little variable)

These recordings were among Weingartner’s earliest, made in America.

PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE:
Bizet – Carmen selection
New Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra, Alick Maclean

Bizet – Carmen – selection – Maclean

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia L1485
Matrices 76991-2, 76992-2
Recorded 10th May 1923
Available from September 1923 to February 1928

PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE:
Bizet – Carmen – selection
BBC Wireless Symphony Orchestra, Percy Pitt

Bizet – Carmen – selection – Pitt

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia 9125
Matrices WAX 1509-1, 1510-1 (6172, 6174)
Recorded 28th April 1926
Available from March 1927 to April 1941

The recordings below contain Landon Ronald’s complete orchestral excerpts from Carmen and almost all of his recordings from Delibes’s Sylvia – only the early 1913 account of the Prelude is missing (recorded on the same day as the Pizzicato)

Delibes – Sylvia – Prelude les Chasseresses
Bizet – Carmen – Intermezzos, Acts 3 & 4

Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Delibes – Sylvia – Prelude les Chasseresses – Ronald

Bizet – Carmen – Intermezzos, Acts 3 & 4 – Ronald

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice D 134
Matrices HO 1867ac, 3640af (side numbers 2-0698, 2-0912)
Recorded 27th May 1916, 8th March 1919
Play at 78.1rpm, 77.2rpm

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude
Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – Intermezzo

Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald
(label for Mascagni “late New Symphony Orchestra”)

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude – Ronald

Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – Intermezzo – Ronald

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice D 137
Matrices HO 456 aj, Cc 2755-I (side numbers 0863, 0739)
Recorded 8th February 1913, 27th March 1923
Play at 77.8rpm, 76.5rpm

This is the later of Ronald’s two recordings of the Cavalleria Intermezzo

Delibes – Sylvia – Cortège de Bacchus
Mendelssohn – Spring Song, Bees’ Wedding

Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Delibes – Sylvia – Cortège de Bacchus – Ronald

Mendelssohn – Spring Song, Bees’ Wedding – Ronald

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice D 160
Matrices HO 406aj, Cc 2754-I (side numbers 0845, 0738)
Recorded January 1913, 27th March 1923
Play at 76.6rpm, 77.2rpm

Ronald recorded the Mendelssohn pieces on 18th November 1911, but this side was not issued. On 6th January 1912 the side was recorded twice more, with the second attempt being issued. The 1923 remake given here (the first of two takes made on the same day) was his last issued recording of these works.

Delibes – Sylvia – Intermezzo and Valse Lente; Pizzicato
Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Delibes – Sylvia – Intermezzo and Valse Lente – Ronald

Delibes – Sylvia – Pizzicato – Ronald

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice D 161
Matrices HO 427af, HO 448aj (side numbers 0849, 0852)
Recorded January 1913, 3rd February 1913
Play at 78.1rpm, 77.5rpm

PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE:
Bizet – Carmen – Preludes to Act 1 and 2
Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, Landon Ronald

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude Act 1 – Ronald

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude Act 2 – Ronald

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice E 461
Matrices BR 936-IA, 937-II (single side numbers 6-830/1)
Recorded 21st January 1927, Queen’s Hall, London

Bizet – The Toreador Song “Carmen”
Band of H.M. Coldstream Guards, John Mackenzie-Rogan

Bizet – Carmen – Toreador Song – Coldstream Guards

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Gramophone Concert Record G.C.-283
Matrix 2482(b)-WG (side number 283)
Recorded 9th October 1902

Transferred at 78rpm, to play in G minor/major at A452.

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude to Act III (Intermezzo)
Orchestra of La Scala, Milan, Carlo Sabajno

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude Act 3 – Sabajno

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Gramophone Concert Record G.C.-760
Matrix 8121b (side number 760)
Recorded May 1906, Milan

PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE:
Bizet – Carmen – Selection I
Bizet – Carmen – Preludio Atto I
La Scala Symphony Orchestra, Carlo Sabajno

Bizet – Carmen – Selection I – Sabajno

Bizet – Carmen – Overture – Sabajno

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Bizet – Carmen – Preludio atto IV
Orchestra of La Scala, Milan, Carlo Sabajno

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude Act 4 – Sabajno

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice C428
Matrices: 925c, 1045c (side numbers 0548, 05025)
Recorded 1906, April 1907, Milan

No conductor is identified in the recording ledgers for the April 1907 sessions. Fred Gaisberg recorded various solo items with Alice Cuccini, the La Scala Chorus and La Scala Orchestra. Other items from Carmen  were recorded at these sessions. When Gaisberg returned to Milan in May 1907, after recording in Egypt, Sabajno was in the studios, and  identified as such in the ledgers. It remains uncertain, therefore, whether he was involved in the April sessions.

Gramophone Concert Record G.C.-50547
Matrix 10383b (50547 IV)
Recorded April 1907

PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE:
Bizet – Carmen – Intermezzo Act IV
Wagner – Lohengrin – Prelude Act III
Musica della R. Marina Italiana, Mo. Cav. Saba Matacena

Bizet – Carmen – Intermezzo IV – Matacena

Wagner – Lohengrin – Prelude Act III – Matacena

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Fonotipia 39471, 39470 (Nos. 1927, 1926)
Matrices: XPh 1595m 1594
Recorded 9th February 1906

These performances are certainly spirited, but it is noticeable how ragged  they are, when compared with the much more polished performances by the  Coldstream Guards and the Garde Républicaine from around the same time.

Bizet – Carmen – Orchestral selections
Berlin State Opera Orchestra, Frieder Weissmann

Prelude (Act 1)
First Intermezzo (Avec la garde montante)
Second Intermezzo (Entr’acte Act 3)
Chorus of the Smugglers (Act 3)
Third Intermezzo (Entr’acte Act 4) (Includes extra repeat to fill out disc)
Ballet (Farandole from L’Arlèsienne, Danse bohemienne from La Jolie Fille De Perth)

Mediafire link for Bizet – Carmen – Orchestral selections – Weissmann

(No longer available due to bogus copyright claim)

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Odeon 5027-9
Matrices C5027A-1, D5027B-1, A5028A-2, A5028B-5, C5029A-4, F5029B-2
Recorded 24th January 1923

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude Act 1, Act 3
Berlin State Opera Orchestra, Frieder Weissmann

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude Act 1 – Weissmann

Bizet – Carmen – Prelude Act 3 – Weissmann

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Parlophone E 11015
Matrices W 2-20769-2 ab, 2-20768 Bm
Recorded late 1920s

Play at 75.9rpm

French:

Bizet – Carmen – excerpts from complete Pathé recording
Sides 5 and 6 – Choeur des gamins (Suite); Choeur des cigarieres: La cloche a sonné
Sides 15 and 16 – Ou me conduisez-vous… [Seguidille]; Oui mais toute seule
Sides 19 and 20 – Les tringles des sistres; Tra la la la
Sides 31 and 32 – Tu m’entendras [Air de la fleur]; Non tu ne m’aime pas

Chorus and Orchestra of the Opéra Comique de Paris, François Ruhlmann
Marguerite Mérentié,
soprano – Carmen
Agustarello Affre, tenor – Don José
Marie Gantéri, soprano – Frasquita
Jeanne Billa-Azéma, soprano – Mercédès
M. Dulac, baritone – Moralès
Pierre Ernest Dupré, baritone – Zuniga

Not heard on these sides:
Aline Vallandri, soprano – Micaëla
Henri Albers, baritone – Escamillo
Hippolyte Belhomme, bass – Le Dancaïre
Paul Dumontier, baritone – Le Remendado

Bizet – Carmen – Pathé sides 5-6 – Ruhlmann

Bizet – Carmen – Pathé sides 15-16 – Ruhlmann


Bizet – Carmen – Pathé sides 19-20 – Ruhlmann

Bizet – Carmen – Pathé sides 31-32 – Ruhlmann

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Pathé catalogue number No.1652 – Carmen 5/6
Pathé catalogue number No.1657 – Carmen 15/16
Pathé catalogue number No.1659 – Carmen 19/20
(80rpm, 11½”, edge start, paper label)
Recorded 1911. Early 1920s pressings
Play at 76.6rpm, 78.1rpm, 76.4rpm

Pathé Carmen 31/32
(90rpm 11½” centre start etched label)
Recorded 1911. Early pressing.
Matrices 96460 RA, 96554 RA
Play at 87.9rpm

Auber – La Muette de Portici – Amour sacré
Orchestra
Henri Albers,
baritone
Albert Vaguet, tenor

Bizet – Carmen – Je suis Escamillo
Orchestra
Henri Albers,
baritone
Gaston de Poumayrac, tenor

Auber – La Muette de Portici – Albers, Vaguet

Bizet – Carmen – Je suis Esacmillo – Albers, de Poumayrac

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Pathé catalogue number 1577
Recording numbers 561, 976
(90rpm 11½” centre start etched label)
Matrices 53632GR, 49578GR
Recorded 1910 – July 1912

Play at 88.0rpm and 88.6rpm

Bizet – Carmen – Couplets du Toréador
Berlioz – La Damnation de Faust – Voici des roses
Maurice Renaud,
baritone with piano

Bizet – Carmen – Toreador – Renaud

Berlioz – La Damnation de Faust – Voici des roses – Renaud

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Pathé recording numbers 3381, 3383
(90rpm 11½” centre start etched label)
Matrices 11844Px, 11846Px
Recorded 1902-3

Play at 87.4rpm and 86.7rpm

Bizet – Carmen – L’amour est enfant; Air des cartes
Marie Delna,
mezzo-soprano with piano

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera – Delna

Bizet – Carmen – Air des cartes – Delna

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Pathé recording numbers 3502, 3514
(90rpm 11½” centre start etched label)
Matrices 7845-B-x, 7866-B-x
Recorded 1903-4

Play at 89.1rpm and 85.2rpm

The opening of the Habanera was not successfully transferred from the Pathé Master Cylinder to this disc, so I’ve reconstructed it from the following bars.

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera
Handel – Célèbre Largo
Orchestra
Alice Raveau,
contralto

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera – Raveau

Handel – Largo – Raveau

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Pathé No.0484 (11½”, edge start, paper label)
Recording numbers 1129, 1135 c
Recorded 1925 (Sides are dated 7th August 1925, 22nd August 1925)

Play at 78.4rpm (Handel transposed down a semitone into E major)

PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE (new restorations):
Bizet – Carmen – Chanson du Toréador

Victor Orchestra
Emilio de Gogorza,
baritone

Victrola 88178
Matrix C-3349-4 (P88178)
Recorded Date 11th June 1906
Plays at 76.2rpm

In this recording (which has only one verse), the chorus members disagree over the language. De Gogorza has been happily singing in French, and most of the chorus follow this with “Toréador, en garde,” but some go for the Italian version “Toreador, attento.” Carmen was still frequently given  in Italian in the early 20th century, and at the Met it was not unknown for the soloists to sing in French while the chorus sang in Italian.

Rossini – Il Barbiere di Siviglia – Largo al factotum
Victor Orchestra, Rosario Bourdon
Emilio de Gogorza,
baritone

Victrola 88181
Matrix C-6867-2 (D88181)
Recorded 8th March 1909
Plays at 78.6rpm

In this recording,  at “uno alla volta” de Gogorza and the orchestra disagree over which edition of the score is being used: the singer uses the version which has the pattern F-E-F-E-D#-E, while the orchestra goes for  F-E-D#-E-D#-E.

Bizet – Carmen – Toreador – Gogorza

Rossini – Barbiere – Largo al factotum – Gogorza

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera; Seguidilla
Orchestra
Sigrid Onegin,
mezzo-soprano

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera – Onegin

Bizet – Carmen – Seguidilla – Onegin

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Brunswick 15128
Matrices E21530, E21533
Recorded 17th February 1927

Italian:

Bizet – Carmen – Romanza del fiore
Thomas – Mignon – Addio Mignon
Orchestra
Angelo Bendinelli,
tenor

Bizet – Carmen – Romanza del fiore – Bendinelli

Thomas – Mignon – Addio Mignon – Bendinelli

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia-Rena Opera Record D 5503
Matrices 11243, 11266
Recorded c1912
sung in Italian

The Carmen aria is sung a semitone below score pitch, playing at 78rpm. The Mignon aria plays at 79.8rpm.

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera
Donizetti – La Favorita – O mio Fernando

Orchestra
Nini Frascani,
mezzo-soprano

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera – Frascani

Donizetti – La Favorita – O mio Fernando – Frascani

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia D 5505
Matrices 11113, 11115
Recorded c1912
sung in Italian

Play at 81.2rpm

English:

Gounod – Faust – Even Bravest Heart
Bizet – Carmen – Toreador Song

Orchestra
Thomas Chalmers,
baritone

Gounod – Faust – Even bravest heart – Chalmers

Bizet – Carmen – Toreador Song – Chalmers

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Edison Diamond Disc 82060
Matrices 2826-B-5-4, 2997-A-2-1 (82060-L, -R)
Recorded 18th February 1914, 1st May 1914, New York

Play at 80.5rpm (Gounod), 79.6rpm (Bizet)

Bizet – Carmen – My Mother I Behold (Act I)
Orchestra, Sir Hamilton Harty
Elsa Stralia,
soprano
Frank Mullings, tenor

Bizet – Carmen – My Mother I Behold – Stralia, Mullings, Harty

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia 7258
Matrix 74106-2
Recorded c 14th May 1920
Available from March 1922 to April 1924

Plays at 83.7rpm
This was reissued on double sided 7332 in April 1924, coupled with Stralia’s 1920 account of Micaela’s aria.
This was available until January 1925 when the Micaela aria was replaced with a 1924 remake – this new issue was available 22nd January 1925 to August 1930.

Bizet – Carmen – The Toreador Song
Wagner – Tannhäuser – O Star of Eve
Orchestra, Clarence Raybould
(Bizet), Robert Ainsworth (Wagner)
Harold Williams,
baritone

Bizet – Carmen – Toreador – Williams

Wagner – Tannhäuser – O Star of Eve – Williams

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Columbia 9873
Matrices WAX 3226-1, 4552-2 (side numbers 8480, 11189)
Recorded 7th August 1928, 15th January 1929

Play at 76.9rpm and 78.0rpm.

Bizet – “Carmen” – Vocal Gems

Intro.: Act1; Habanera; Micaela – Don Jose Duet; Seguidilla; Toreador’s Song, Act 2
Flower Song, Act 2; March, Act 4; Escamillo-Carmen Duet, Finale

Sadler’s Wells Orchestra, Warwick Braithwaite
Noel Eadie,
soprano
Nancy Evans, contralto
Webster Booth, tenor
Dennis Noble, baritone

Bizet – Carmen – Vocal gems – Eadie, Evans, Booth, Noble, Braithwaite

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice C 3143
Matrices 2EA 8190-I, 8191-I
Recorded 21st December 1939

Bizet – Gems from “Carmen”
Orchestra
Zonophone Operatic Party
Carrie Tubb,
soprano
Violet Elliott, mezzo-soprano
Ernest Pike, tenor
Harold Wilde, tenor
Stewart Gardner, baritone
Peter Dawson, bass-baritone

Bizet – Carmen – gems – Zonophone

(mp3 file – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Zonophone The Twin Serial A 50
Matrices z5447f, 5449f (side numbers Z-044509. Z-044510)
Recorded 15th September 1911

Plays at 75.6rpm

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera; Gipsy Song
Orchestra

Edna Thornton,
contralto
(credited on label as Madame Violetta)
Eleanor Jones-Hudson, soprano
Ernest Pike, tenor
Peter Dawson, bass-baritone

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera – Thornton

Bizet – Carmen – Gipsy Song – Thornton

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Zonophone Celebrity Record G.O.9
Matrices 11589e, 11590e (side numbers 43205, X43207)
Recorded 14th April 1910

Plays at about 78.5rpm.

Thornton enters a beat early for the final verse of the Gipsy Song, but somehow she and the orchestra get themselves back together again after some time.

Bizet – Carmen – Toreador Song
Wagner – Tannhäuser – O Star of Eve

Orchestra
Roy Henderson,
baritone

Bizet – Carmen – Toreador Song – Henderson

Wagner – Tannhäuser – O Star of Eve – Henderson

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Broadcast Twelve 5100/3231
Matrices L 0241, L 0245 (5100-A/3231-A, 5100-B X/3231-B X)
Recorded January 1929
Sides play at about 77rpm, and 78rpm

Gounod – Faust – Even bravest heart
Rossini – The Barber of Seville – Room for the City’s Factotum

Orchestra
Roy Henderson,
baritone

Gounod – Faust – Even bravest heart – Henderson

Rossini – Barber of Seville – Largo al factotum – Henderson

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Broadcast Twelve 5089
Matrices L 0242, L 0246 (5089A X, 5089B)
Sides play at about 77rpm, and 78rpm
Recorded January 1929

At these speeds the Bizet and Wagner arias both play in score pitch. The Gounod plays in D flat, putting the introduction at score pitch, and the aria a tone below. The Rossini plays in A, a surprisingly large transposition of a minor third below score pitch.

 

Bizet – Gems from “Carmen”
Soloists, full chorus and orchestra
with Constance Willis, mezzo-soprano

Bizet – Carmen – gems – Willis

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Broadcast Twelve 5018
Matrices L070X, L071X
Recorded c1929
Plays at about 76.0rpm

Saint-Saëns – Samson and Delilah – Softly awakes my heart
Bizet – Carmen – Habanera
Orchestra

Constance Willis,
mezzo-soprano

Saint-Saëns – Samson and Delilah – Softly awakes my heart – Willis

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera – Willis

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Broadcast Twelve 5114
Matrices L 0208X, L 0247X
Recorded 1929
Plays at about 77.5rpm

Constance Willis is perhaps best remembered (if at all) for her impressive performance as Katisha in the 1939 film of The Mikado. She was an experienced singer both in concert and in opera by this time, and was known for her Carmen. Surprisingly she appeared only once at the Proms, in 1930, singing “Amour! viens aider ma faiblesse!” from Samson and Delilah, and two Rachmaninov songs. The second of her records listed here prompted the following from Herman Klein in the December 1929 issue of The Gramophone:

Constance Willis’s experience with the B.N.O.C. has made a dramatic singer of this artist and taught her to bring some of her stage instincts with her into the recording studio. In such cases let me assure the Broadcast Twelve operator that there is no need for indiscriminate over-amplifying; the voice and the style are quite big enough without his artful aid. The only other criticism I would make concerns the descending chromatic phrases of the Habanera; and there Miss Willis is too inclined to “slither” down from note to note when a clean scale is absolutely essential.

Earlier recordings for Vocalion were warmly received.

Bizet – Carmen – Flower Song
Gounod – La Reine de Saba – Lend me your aid

Orchestra
Frank Titterton,
tenor
(credited on labels as Francesco Vada)

Bizet – Carmen – Flower Song – Titterton

Gounod – La Reine de Saba – Lend me your aid – Titterton

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Broadcast Twelve 5062
Matrices L 072, L 094 (5062A X, 5062B)
Recorded c 1929
Plays at about 77.4rpm. This record is very worn and scratched, particularly at the start of each side.

Puccini – La Boheme – Your Tiny Hand is Frozen
Bizet – Carmen – The Flower Song

Orchestra, Leslie Heward
(Puccini), Julian Clifford (Bizet)
Frank Titterton, tenor

Puccini – La Boheme – Your tiny hand is frozen – Titterton

Bizet – Carmen – Flower Song – Titterton

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Decca K505
Matrices MA 486-2A, MA 746-1A
Recorded 24th September 1929, 6th December 1929
Play at about 78.5rpm and 78.9rpm.

Together, these two records provide a rare chance to hear an artist recording the same aria for two different companies around the same time.

PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE:
Bizet – Carmen – March Act IV
Gounod – Faust – La Kermesse
Sung in English
Chorus and Symphony Orchestra, Albert Coates

Bizet – Carmen – March Act IV – Coates

Gounod – Faust – La Kermesse – Coates

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice D 1047
Matrices Cc 7063-II, 7065-II (single side numbers 4-0749, 4-0750)
Recorded 26th October 1925, Hayes

This was recorded in a session at Hayes which also included the Boris Godunov coronation scene with Chaliapin and the Church Scene from Faust, with Chaliapin and Austral. The baritone who has a brief solo in the Faust chorus is unnamed. There is a possibility that it is Edward Halland, who was in studio with Coates the following day when some Wagner excerpts were recorded.

The sound is somewhat recessed, as these are fairly early examples of electrical recording of pieces for chorus and orchestra. Indeed, on the same day that these recordings were made at Hayes, the pianist Max Darewski was being recorded acoustically in another of the Hayes studios.

German:

Saint-Saëns – Samson et Dalila – Printemps qui commence
Bizet – Carmen – Ja, die Liebe hat bunte flügel (Habanera)

Berlin State Opera Orchestra, Leo Blech
Maria Olszewska,
contralto

Saint-Saëns – Samson et Dalila – Printemps qui commence – Olszewska

Bizet – Carmen – Habanera – Olszewska

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice D1386
Matrices CWR 1291-I, 1295-II (side numbers 2-043085, 2-044029)
Recorded 27th and 28th February 1927, Berlin

Saint-Saëns – Samson et Dalila – Mon coeur s’ouvre a ta voix
Handel – Rinaldo – Lascia ch’io pianga

Berlin State Opera Orchestra, Fritz Zweig
Maria Olszewska,
contralto

Saint-Saëns – Samson et Dalila – Mon coeur s’ouvre – Olszewska

Handel – Rinaldo – Lascia ch’io pianga – Olszewska

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice D 1465
Matrices CLR 3961-III, CLR 3962-II (side numbers 2-033131, 2-033132)
Recorded 15th March 1928, Berlin

Across these two records Olszewska shows off her command of languages: the Saint-Saëns arias are in French, the Carmen is in German, and the Handel is in Italian.

Russian:

Bizet – Carmen – La fleur que tu m’avais jetée
Meyerbeer – Les Huguenots – Plus blanche que la blanche ermine

Orchestra
Dmitri Smirnov,
tenor

Bizet – Carmen – Flower song – Smirnov

Meyerbeer – Les Huguenots – Plus blanche – Smirnov

(mp3 files – click to play, or right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Historic Masters HMB 7
Matrices 2689c, 2857c (022312, 022338)
Recorded 21st October 1912, 15th October 1913, St. Petersburg

The sides play at about 78.6rpm and 75.2rpm respectively. This repressing from original matrices was among the earliest issues by Historic Masters.

Aida excerpts and other items with Sydney Rayner, Eva Turner, Giovanni Inghilleri, Tina Poli-Randaccio, Agustarello Affre, Jane Marignan, Frank Mullings, Elsa Stralia, Andreina Beinat, Vincenzo Bettoni, Valentina Bartolomasi, Guido Fernandez, Rosita Pagani, Enrico Trentini, conducted by Beecham, Haarth, Albergoni, Barbirolli, Sabajno, Harty; Mackenzie-Rogan, Coldstream Guards Band – Orth, Tchaikovsky; Stanley Chapple – excerpts from Stravinsky’s Firebird; Franz André – Liszt, Richard Strauss

When you have a lot of free time, it sometimes turns out that the things you planned to use it for just don’t happen. Such was the case with my summer holidays. This is why it’s been two and a half months since the last update. I hope the new selection proves interesting. I’ve been exploring recordings of Aida, and this has included branching out into one or two other recordings by some of the same artists, and occasionally other recordings on the same labels. This diversification brings us several excerpts from Tosca and Cavalleria Rusticana. The recordings are presented roughly in score order for the selections from Aida (and are annotated with the pages of the vocal score.) And just to round things off, there’s some Stravinsky from Stanley Chapple, and some Richard Strauss and Liszt from Franz André.

Verdi – Otello – (Tu! Indietro! Fuggi!…) Ora e per sempre
Verdi – Aida – (Se quel guerriero io fossi…) Celeste Aida

(VS pp6-11)

Orchestra
Sydney Rayner
, Premier Tenor of the Opera Comique, Paris

Mediafire link for Otello and Aida arias – Sydney Rayner

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Decca T.204
Matrices GA 5380-1D, GA 5382-11D
Issued April 1933
Recorded 20th December 1932

Verdi – Aida – Ritorna vincitor
Aida – Ritorna vincitor. Part 1 (VS pp52-56)
Aida – Ritorna vincitor. Part 2 (VS pp56-59)
(3½ bar overlap between sides)
Orchestra, Sir Thomas Beecham
Eva Turner,
soprano
Columbia L 2150
Matrices WAX 3931-3, 3932-2 (9956, 9958)
Recorded 19th July 1928
Available from mid October 1928 to August 1949

Puccini – Tosca – Vissi d’arte
Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – Voi lo sapete

Orchestra, Sir Thomas Beecham
Eva Turner,
soprano
Columbia L 2118
Matrices WAX 3929-3, 3930-2 (9952, 9951)
Recorded 18th July 1928
Available from November 1928 to April 1950

Mediafire link for Verdi, Puccini, Mascagni arias – Eva Turner, Thomas Beecham

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Verdi – Aida – Ballet music
Side 1: a) Tanz der Priesterinnen (VS pp65-67) b) Tanz der Mohrensklaven (VS pp85-87)
Side 2: Ballettmusik a. d. 2. Akt (VS pp122-131)
Berlin State Orchestra, Herbert Haarth
Siemens Polydor 57270
Matrices 2281½ GS9, 2280½ GS9
Recorded 1943 (Depositato 10.8.43 (on both sides))

Verdi – Aida – Triumphal March Act 2
Side 1 (VS p111-117,120-122)
Side 2 (VS p121 line 4 -122, 132-141, 196-203)
Berlin State Opera Orchestra, Frieder Weissmann
Parlophone E 11041
Matrices XXB 8479/80
Recorded probably 31st March 1930

Plays at 75.1rpm

Mediafire link for Aida Ballet music and Grand March – Herbert Haarth, Frieder Weissmann

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

 

Verdi – Aida – Act 3 Duet


Side 1: Ciel! mio padre (VS pp215-223)
Side 2: Su, dunque, sorgete egizie coorti (VS pp223-233)
Grand Symphony Orchestra, Angelo Albergoni
Giovanni Inghilleri,
baritone – Amonasro
Tina Poli-Randaccio,
soprano – Aida
Parlophone Odeon Series R 20141
Matrices XXPh 6405/6
Recorded 20th October 1928

Puccini – Tosca:
Tre sbirri, una carrozza


La povera mi cena fu interrotta (… Gia mi dicon venal)


Orchestra , John Barbirolli
Giovanni Inghilleri,
baritone
Octave Dua, tenor
His Master’s Voice D 1701
Matrices CR 2422-I, CR 2423-I (2-052426/7)
Recorded 19th June 1929

Verdi – Un Ballo in Maschera – Eri tu che macchiavi quell’ anima


Orchestra, John Barbirolli
Verdi – Rigoletto – Pari siamo!


Orchestra of La Scala, Milan, Carlo Sabajno
Giovanni Inghilleri,
baritone
His Master’s Voice D 1823
Matrices CR 2424-II (2-052424), CF 2359-IV (2-052394)
Recorded 19th June 1929, 10th December 1928

This record has a small chunk chipped from the rim, affecting the start of the groove on both sides.

(These are mp3 files – left click the link and download the file, or press play)

Verdi – Aida – Je te revois enfin – Duo
(Pur ti riveggo) – (VS pp233-235, 245-247, 248-249)
Verdi – Aida – Mourir ô toi si belle – Duo final
(Morir, si pura e bella) – (VS pp298-300, 303-304, 308-309)
Orchestra
Agustarello Affre,
tenor – Radames
Jane Marignan, soprano – Aida

Mediafire link for Aida duets – Agustarello Affre, Jane Marignan

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Pathé AGPA P1503 (25) [88.6rpm, 28cm diameter, centre start]
Matrices 54579 GR, 60516 GR
Recorded c1906-11

Verdi – Aida – Nile Duet. From Finale, Act III
Aida – Nile Duet. From Finale, Act III. Part I (VS pp239-244)
Aida – Nile Duet. From Finale, Act III. Part II (VS pp244-249)
Orchestra, Hamilton Harty
Frank Mullings,
tenor – Radames
Elsa Stralia, soprano – Aida

Mediafire link for Aida – Nile Duet – Frank Mullings, Elsa Stralia – Hamilton Harty

(This is an mp3 file – left click the link, download the file)

Columbia 7248/9
Matrices 74063-2, 74064-2
Recorded about 3rd May 1920, 80rpm
Available from January 1921 to April 1924

This duet was reissued on double sided Columbia 7334 in April 1924, and was available in this form until August 1930

Verdi – Aida – Judgment Scene (Act IV)
Aida – Judgment Scene (Act IV) Pt.1. – Spirto del Numo
(Heavenly Spirit) (VS pp279-281(last line), 284-285)
Aida – Judgment Scene (Act IV) Pt.2. – Radames e deciso il tuo fato (We thy fate have decided) (pp285-295 (final bars omitted))
Orchestra
Andreina Beinat,
mezzo-soprano – Amneris
Vincenzo Bettoni, bass – Ramfis

Mediafire link for Aida – Judgment Scene – Vincenzo Bettoni, Andreina Beinat

(This is an mp3 file – left click the link, download the file)

Columbia-Rena Opera Record D 5540 (10”)
Matrices 41851, 41852
Recorded c1912

These sides form part of the abridged Columbia Aida, issued on 17 double sided records, though this particular issue is not from the main run of either the Italian or English issues.

Verdi – Aida – Sacerdoti, compiste un delitto (Scena del Giudizio, Act IVo) (VS pp288 – 295)
Verdi – Aida – La fatal pietra (VS pp296 – 298)
Grande Orchestra, Carlo Sabajno
Valentina Bartolomasi,
soprano – Aida
Guido Fernandez, bass – Ramfis
Rosita Pagani, mezzo-soprano – Amneris
Enrico Trentini, tenor – Radames
Gramophone Concert Record S 5178
Matrices 1013Aj (2-20254147), 971Aj (2-0254148)
Recorded 3rd November 1919, 27th October 1919
Issued 1920
These are sides 37-38 of a 40 side complete recording of Aida

Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – Scena Ia
Parte Ia – “Gli aranci olezzano” (VS p11 – 20.2.2)
Parte IIa – “Cessin le rustiche opre” (VS p20.2.3 – 26)
La Scala Chorus
Grande Orchestra, Carlo Sabajno
Gramophone Concert Record S 5094
Matrices 3017c, 3018c (2-0524500, 2-0254501)
Recorded 6th April 1915
80.8rpm
These are sides 3-4 of a 20 side complete recording of Cavalleria Rusticana

Bizet – Carmen – Preludio atto IV
Orchestra of La Scala, Milan, Carlo Sabajno
Gramophone Concert Record G.C.-50547 (10”)
Matrix 10383b (50547 IV)
Recorded April 1907

Donizetti – Don Pasquale – Coro dei servitori (complete)
Gounod – Faust – Kermesse
(VS pp29-41, 44-46)
CORI DELLA SCALA
Aristide Venturi,
chorus master
Orchestra, Carlo Sabajno
Gramophone Monarch Record 054502/054503
Matrices 570c (054502 III), 629c (054503L)
Recorded October-December 1905 (approved 19/3/06), May 1906 (approved 17/9/06)

Mediafire link for Aida, Cavalleria, Carmen, Don Pasquale, Faust – Carlo Sabajno

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)


Orth – In a Clockmakers Shop
Band of H.M. Coldstream Guards, John Mackenzie-Rogan
Gramophone Concert Record G.C.-2-178 (10”)
Matrix 3393e (2-178 II)
Recorded 19th January 1906
Issued 1906

Tchaikovsky – Finale 4th Symphony
Band of H.M. Coldstream Guards, John Mackenzie-Rogan
Gramophone Monarch Record 0185 (12”)
Matrix 2758f (0185-1*)
Recorded 17th December 1908
Issued 1909

Mackenzie-Rogan is not named on the record label.
This recording is likely to be transposed a tone down from Tchaikovksy’s original, like the Safranek arrangement for band. The recording plays in E flat at 78rpm. However, at this time, British military pitch was around A-452, so the record should probably be played at 80rpm, to be in E flat for the appropriate pitch standard.

Mediafire link for Orth, Tchaikovksy – Mackenzie-Rogan & Coldstream

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

 

Stravinsky – L’oiseau de feu:
Danse Infernale du roi Kastchei
Opening Key A minor, Full score p118-155
Finale
Opening Key B, Full score p166-172
Aeolian Orchestra, Stanley Chapple

Mediafire link for Stravinsky – Firebird excerpts – Stanley Chapple

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Vocalion K-05288
Matrices M.0169, M.0168
Released April 1927
R. Strauss – Der Rosenkavalier – Waltzes
Liszt – Les Preludes

L’ Orchestre Symphonique de la Radiodiffusion Nationale Belge, Franz André

Mediafire link for Richard Strauss, Liszt – Franz André

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Capitol Telefunken L 8173
Matrices L-8173-Y1, L-8173-Z1 (8-52)
Recorded 12th April 1952, 9th April 1952, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels

Lilian Stiles Allen; Hamilton Harty and Henry Wood – Schubert; winners of Columbia’s Schubert competition; Lilac Time

The first selection of recordings this time is of the soprano Lilian Stiles-Allen. She was widely respected in her day, though her performances were confined to the concert platform and broadcasting as she was “not suited to the operatic stage.” She was one of the original sixteen soloists in Vaughan Williams’s Serenade to Music, and went on to teach Dame Julie Andrews. She recorded a number of sides for the Edison Bell company, with the recordings appearing on various of its labels. The recordings have only rarely been reissued, and having gathered a number of them, seeing Julie Andrews perform in London prompted me to transfer these recordings of her teacher.

Mediafire link for Lilian Stiles Allen – Edison Bell recordings

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Handel – Messiah – Rejoice greatly
Handel – Theodora – Angels ever bright and fair
Edison Bell Velvet Face 700
Matrices X1663B-1, X1664E-1
Recorded c1922
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano
Orchestra

Verdi – Aida – Act 2. Neath the chances of battle… Tremble, thou art discovered
Edison Bell X546
Matrices X1840J, X1841D
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano. Edith Furmedge, contralto
Orchestra

Verdi – Il Trovatore – Miserere
Edison Bell Winner L5397
Matrix 13747F-2
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano. Hardy Williamson, tenor
Orchestra, Orazio Fagotti

Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – O rejoice that the Lord has arisen
Edison Bell Winner L5397
Matrix 13746E-2
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen,
soprano
Orchestra

Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – Santuzza’s Song
Edison Bell X523
Matrix X1763D
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano
John Barbirolli’s Symphony Orchestra

Puccini – Madam Butterfly – Act 1. Love duet, finale
Edison Bell X523
Matrix X1762F
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano.  Dan Jones, tenor
John Barbirolli’s Symphony Orchestra

Puccini – Madam Butterfly – Act 2. Flower duet: Shake the cherry tree… Not a flower left
Edison Bell Electron 0282
Matrices 11963N-1, 11964A-1
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano. Edith Furmedge, contralto
Orchestra

Puccini – Madam Butterfly – Act 2. One Fine Day
Edison Bell Electron 0178
Matrix 11142A-1
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen,
soprano
Orchestra

Gounod – Faust – Finale Trio
Edison Bell Electron 0178
Matrix 11143F-2
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano. Edward Leer, tenor. Edward Halland, bass
Orchestra

HG Pelissier – Awake (Ballad)
Maude Craske Day – Arise, O sun (Ballad)
Edison Bell Winner 5199
Matrices 12845B-1, 12846A-1
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano with piano

Monckton – A Country Girl (excerpts) (Rhajah of Bong; Under the Deodar; Two Little Chicks; Farewell; Pink Hungarian Band; Try It On Johnnie; Yo Ho Little Girls; Coo; My Own Little Girl; Speak And Tell)
Edison Bell Winner L5379
Matrices 13786F-2, 13787F-2
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano. Tessa Deane, mezzo-soprano. Anthony Quorn, tenor
London Concert Orchestra

Lehar – Frederica – Why did you kiss my heart awake
Edison Bell Winner 5171
Matrix 13001F-2
Recorded c1930
Lilian Stiles Allen, soprano
Orchestra

Lehar – Frederica – O maiden, my maiden
Edison Bell Winner 5171
Matrix 13002B-2
Recorded c1930
Hardy Williamson, tenor
Orchestra

The remaining recordings here focus around Schubert and English Columbia. Sir Hamilton Harty, as well as recording a stunning account of Schubert’s Great C major Symphony, also recorded substantial parts of the Rosamunde music, including both the Alphonso and Estrella overture, and the Zauberharfe one.

Mediafire link for Schubert – Rosamunde music – Sir Hamilton Harty

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Schubert – Rosamunde – Overture (Die Zauberharfe)
Columbia L 1998
Matrices WAX 2654-1, 2655-2 (7526, 7530)
Recorded 2nd May 1927
Available from December 1927 to June 1947
Hallé Orchestra, Sir Hamilton Harty

As is common with many UK Columbias from this period, the stated 80rpm, turns out to be unreliable, with both sides starting at that speed and ending about  81.2rpm. The recording is somewhat cut, with side 1 containing bars 1-83 and 104-185, and side 2 containing bars 206-375 and 396 to the end.

Schubert – Rosamunde Incidental Music

Overture (Alphonso and Estrella) (2 sides)
Entr’acte No.1 (2 sides)
(a) Entr’acte No.2; (b) Shepherd’s Melody (for Clarinet, Bassoon and Horn)
Entr’acte No.3 (in B flat major) (without repeats)
Ballet Music No.1 – Andantino (in G major) (without repeats)
Ballet Music No.2 – (a) Allegro Moderato; (b) Andante un Poco Assai (without repeats)

Columbia L 2122-5
Matrices WAX 3549-2, 3550-2, 3551-1, 3552-1, 3554-3, 3555-2, 3556-2, 3553-2 (9230, 9228, 9229, 9248, 9239, 9240, 9235, 9238)
Recorded 27th April 1928
Available from September 1928 to August 1946
Hallé Orchestra, Sir Hamilton Harty

Sir Henry Wood recorded Schubert’s Unfinished symphony in a very abridged acoustic version, before making two electrical versions in 1926 and 1933.

Mediafire link for Schubert – Unfinished Symphony (1926 & 1933) – Henry Wood

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Symphony in B minor (Unfinished)

I. Allegro moderato (3 sides – no repeat)
II. Andante con moto (3 sides)

Columbia 9513-5
Matrices WAX 1490-1, 1491-2, 1492-2, 1493-2, 1494-2, 1495-2 (S654, 653, 657, 658, 652, 655)
Recorded 23rd April 1926
Originally issued on L1791-93 available January 1927 to October 1928
This issue available October 1928 to December 1933 (when it was replaced by the 1933 recording)
The New Queen’s Hall Orchestra, Sir Henry J. Wood

All sides play at the stated 80rpm

Symphony No.8 in B minor (Unfinished)

I. Allegro moderato (3 sides – no repeat)
II. Andante con moto (3 sides)

Columbia DX 551-3
Matrices CAX 6975-1, 6976-1, 6977-1, 6978-2, 6979-2, 6980-1
Recorded 30th October 1933
Available from December 1933
London Symphony Orchestra, Sir Henry J. Wood

Frank Merrick’s Two Movements in Symphonic Form and John St.Anthony Johnson’s Pax Vobiscum were the English Prize Works in the Schubert Centenary – Columbia International Composers Contest.

Mediafire link for Merrick & Johnson – Schubert competition winners – Stanford Robinson

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Frank Merrick – Two Movements in Symphonic Form (A completion of Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony)

1. Scherzo (2 sides)
2. Poco Allegro (2 sides)

Columbia 9562-3
Matrices WAX 4180-2, 4181-1, 4249-1, 4250-3 (10437, 10436, 10575, 10574)
Recorded 20th October 1928 (sides 1,2), 3rd November 1928 (sides 3,4)
Available from January 1929 to March 1942
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Stanford Robinson

This plays in the expected key of B minor at 76rpm.

Based on the deliberately Schubertian structure of the Scherzo, I’ve surmised that a section of music at the end of the first side is repeated at the start of the second. I’ve included two versions of the movement, one with the repeated section edited together as I believe it should be played, and one with all the music as recorded.

John St.Anthony Johnson – Pax Vobiscum
Columbia 9564
Matrices WAX 4178-2, 4179-2 (10438, 10435)
Recorded 20th October 1928
Available from January 1929 to March 1935
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Stanford Robinson

This plays in C sharp minor at 76rpm, the same speed as the Merrick piece recorded at the same session.

Finally some Schubert of a rather different style – as arranged by Clutsam for the musical Lilac Time.

Download – Schubert-Clutsam – Lilac Time – selection – George W Byng

(mp3 file – right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Schubert-Clutsam – Lilac Time – Selection
His Master’s Voice C 1098
Matrices Cc 2373-II, Cc 2376-II (3-0812/3)
Recorded 12th January 1923
Mayfair Orchestra, George W. Byng

Lilac Time – Selection, Part 1 (Just a little ring; The Flower; The Golden Song; Yours is my heart)
Lilac Time – Selection, Part 2 (My Sweetest Song of all; Maiden, try to smile; Girls and Boys)

Dan Godfrey – Mozart’s Jupiter (new transfer); Hamilton Harty – Mozart Divertimento No.17; Jean Witold – Eine kleine Nachtmusik; Pauline Aubert – Rondo alla turca; Robert Veyron-Lacroix – Piano Concertos K107 (after JC Bach), with Roland Douatte; Lener Quartet – Eine kleine Nachtmusik; Don Giovanni excerpts in English – Tudor Davies, Peter Dawson, Eleanor Jones-Hudson

The focus this time is on Mozart, with a new transfer of Dan Godfrey’s recording of Symphony No.41 “Jupiter” K551, and a selection of orchestral and keyboard items, including Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, from the 1950s as presented on a French “Mode disques” LP from some time later. For a different take on Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, there is also the Lener Quartet’s 1926 recording. There are also some acoustic items from Don Giovanni, sung in English.

Mozart –Symphony No.41 in C major (“Jupiter” Symphony)

Mediafire link for Mozart – Jupiter Symphony – Dan Godfrey

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Columbia L1938-41
Matrices: WRAX 2432-2, 2433-1, 2434-2, 2435-2, 2436-2, 2437-2, 2438-2, 2439-2
Recorded 4th February 1927
Available November 1927 to April 1934
Symphony Orchestra, Sir Dan Godfrey

This recording has a substantial overlap between sides 2 and 3. The first movement spreads over 3 sides, despite lasting only a little over 8 minutes. The first side contains the exposition (which could therefore be repeated by playing the record twice.) The second side carries through into the recapitulation, up to bar 243. The third side begins at bar 212, therefore overlapping 32 bars with the previous side, a fact acknowledged (but not explained) in the notes of the original record album.

It’s a shame that Godfrey chose this unusual side arrangement – if he’d squeezed the first movement onto 2 sides, he could have included a filler on the 8th side.

Mozart – Divertimento No.17 in D major K334

Mediafire link for Mozart – Divertimento No.17 – Hamilton Harty

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Columbia LX 350-52
Matrices: CAX 7302-2, 7303-1, 7304-2, 7305-1, 7306-2, 7307-1
Recorded 1934

I. Allegro (1½ sides)
II. Theme and 6 Variations (1½ sides)
III. Menuetto & Trio
VI. Rondo: Allegro

London Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir Hamilton Harty

Harty omits the fourth and fifth movements. In the second, repeats are played only in the theme and the final variation. The finale is somewhat cut, omitting bars 127-134, 1702-1861, 2072-2151, 269 and 3362-3441.

Mozart – “Petite Musique de Nuit; Marche Turque; Concerti No.2 et 3 pour piano et orchestre”

Mediafire link for Mozart – Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Rondo alla Turca, Piano Concertos after JC Bach – Various

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Mode Disques MDINT 9 073
(disques vogues)
Matrices MD1396-A/B
Recorded 1957

Serenade in G major K525 “Eine kleine Nachtmusik”

I. Allegro
II. Romance: Andante
III. Menuetto: Allegretto
IV. Rondo: Allegro

Ensemble Instrumental Sinfonia, Jean Witold

Piano Sonata in A major K331III. Rondo alla turca
Pauline Aubert, harpsichord

J.C. Bach arr. Mozart: Piano Concerto K.207 No.2 in G major

I. Allegro
II. Allegretto con variazioni

J.C. Bach arr. Mozart: Piano Concerto K.207 No.3 in E flat major

I. Allegro
II. Allegretto

Collegium Musicum de Paris, Roland Douatte
Robert Veyron-Lacroix
, piano

Mozart – Serenade in G major K525 “Eine kleine Nachtmusik”

Mediafire link for Mozart – Eine Kleine Nachtmusik – Lener Quartet

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Columbia L 1729-30
Matrices WAX 1125-6, 1126-6, 1127-6 or 7, 1128-7
Recorded 19th February 1926
Available from Jun 1926 to July 1943 (Side 3 take 6 replaced by take 7 on 3rd March 1927)

I. Allegro (1 side)
II. Romance: Andante (1½ sides)
III. Menuetto: Allegretto (½ side)
IV. Rondo: Allegro (1 side)

Lener String Quartet

Mozart – Don Giovanni – On her contentment (Dalla sua pace)


Mozart – Don Giovanni – To her I love (Il mio tesoro)


His Master’s Voice D 957
Matrices Cc 4572-II, 4573-II (single side numbers 2-02073/4)
Recorded 5th May 1924
Tudor Davies, tenor
Orchestra, George W Byng

Mozart – Don Giovanni – Give me thy hand, Oh fairest (La ci darem la mano)


Zonophone X-44130
Matrix 10142e (X-44130-IV)
Recorded 19th May 1909
Peter Dawson, bass-baritone
Eleanor Jones-Hudson, soprano (credited on label as Alvena Yarrow)
Orchestra

(mp3 files – left click the link and download the file, or press play)

Franz André – Carnival of the Animals, Daphnis and Chloe Suite No.2; François Ruhlmann – Chabrier’s España; Maurice Maréchal, Philippe Gaubert – Lalo’s Cello Concerto; W.H. Squire, Hamilton Harty – Saint-Saëns’s First Cello Concerto; Arnold Földesy – Bruch’s Kol Nidrei; Antonio Janigro, Dean Dixon – Dvorak’s Cello Concerto

The themes this month are the cello and French composers. A number of recordings will fall into both categories.

We begin with Franz André conducting Saint-Saëns’s Carnival of the Animals and Ravel’s second Daphnis and Chloe suite. The early 1950s Telefunken sound is generally good, particularly in the Saint-Saëns, with its sparer textures. The Ravel, the earlier of the two recordings, suffers some crumbling of sound in climaxes. Both works receive impressive performances, though the double bass player in Le Carnaval isn’t as secure as one would wish.

From twenty years earlier, François Ruhlmann conducts Chabrier’s España, on a rather noisy Pathé recording.

Recordings of two French cello concertos date from about the same period. Maurice Maréchal plays the Lalo concerto impressively, with solid backing from Philippe Gaubert in a 1932 Columbia recording. There are a few small cuts in the first movement. And from spring of 1926, W.H. Squire plays Saint-Saëns’s Cello Concerto No.1 with equally fine support from Hamilton Harty and the Hallé Orchestra.

Arnold Földesy recorded for the Gramophone company around 1915-19, Odeon in the early 1920s, and again for the Gramophone Company around 1930. Among his HMV recordings were movements from the Lalo concerto, presumably abridged. He was principal cellist of the Berlin Philharmonic for a number of years, before working as a soloist. His cello is now owned by Daniel Müller-Scholl, who has recorded Bruch’s Kol Nidrei on it. It is this work that we can hear Földesy playing (with a minor cut), in an early 1930s Gramophone Company recording with piano accompaniment.

For the final cello recording of this update, we return to the early LP era. Antonio Janigro plays Dvorak’s Cello Concerto, with the support of Dean Dixon and the Vienna State Opera Orchestra.

Saint-Saëns – Carnival of the Animals
Ravel – Daphnis and Chloe Suite No.2

Mediafire link for Saint-Saëns and Ravel – Franz André

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Telefunken GMA 41
Matrices LPO-65330-3B, LPO-36498-3B
Recorded 5th October 1952, November 1950
L’ Orchestre Symphonique de la Radiodiffusion Nationale Belge, Franz André
with Frank Vanbulck and Jeanne Visele, pianos

Chabrier – España – Rapsodie pour orchestre

Download – Chabrier – Espana – François Ruhlmann

(mp3 file – right click the link, then select “Save as”)

Pathé X.5446
Matrices N 8689-1, N 8690-1 (M5-50495, –)
Recorded 1931
Orchestre Symphonique, François Ruhlmann

Lalo – Cello Concerto

Mediafire link for Lalo – Cello Concerto – Maurice Maréchal, Philippe Gaubert

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Columbia LFX 282-4
Matrices WLX 1619-3, 1620-2, 1621-3, 1622-3, 1623-1, 1624-1 (M6-62012, 62565, 62567, 62569, 62017, 62016)
Recorded June 5 1932 (sides 1 and 2), June 6 1932 (remainder)
Maurice Maréchal, cello
Orchestre Symphonique, Philippe Gaubert

I. 1er Temps (2½ sides)
II. Intermezzo (1½ sides)
III. Final (2 sides)

The first movement has several cuts: bars 7-12 of fig 7; first 8 bars of fig 8; from beat before fig 9 to last beat of 10th bar of fig 9.

Saint-Saens – Cello Concerto No.1 in A minor Op.33

Mediafire link for Saint-Saëns – Cello Concerto No.1 – W.H. Squire, Hamilton Harty

(This is an mp3 file – left click the link, download the file)

Columbia L 1800-2
Matrices WAX 1414-2, 1415-1, 1416-1, 1417-1, 1418-4, 1419-1 (6064, 6066, 6057, 6058, 6067, 6065)
Recorded 25th March 1926
Available from December 1926 to January 1940
W.H. Squire, cello
Hallé Orchestra, Sir Hamilton Harty

All sides run at 80.6rpm, and maintain a consistent speed – this seems a rare occurrence for Columbias of this vintage. The work is in one continous movement, though it is divided into sections.

Bruch – Kol Nidrei

Download – Bruch – Kol Nidrei – Arnold Földesy

(mp3 file – right click the link, then select “Save as”)

His Master’s Voice E.H. 15
Matrices Cw 303-I, 304-I (single-side numbers 4-047850/1)
Recorded c1930
Arnold Földesy, cello
Helmut Baerwald, piano

Side 1 runs from the start of the work to the first beat of letter D in the score. The second side picks up at one beat before letter E – thus omitting 11½ bars.
Földesy also recorded this work in August 1920 for Odeon.

Dvorak – Cello Concerto in B minor Op.104

Mediafire link for Dvorak – Cello Concerto – Antonio Janigro, Dean Dixon

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

World Record Club T 342 (Westminster recording)
Matrices W 7904-1N, 7905-1N
Recorded 1953/4

I. Allegro
II. Adagio ma non troppo
III. Allegro moderato

Antonio Janigro, cello
Vienna State Opera Orchestra, Dean Dixon

The original Nixa release of this recording was reviewed in Gramophone in June 1954. It was described as “first-class in every way.”  It is compared favourably against versions by Zara Nelsova and Rostropovich.

The original release had the first two movements on the first side, and the third movement on the second side. On this World Record Club reissue, the 2nd movement is moved onto the second side.

Franz André – Bizet’s Arlèsienne Suites; Ivanov, Gauk, Golovanov – Balakirev; Henry Wood – Purcell, Mendelssohn; Hamilton Harty – Tchaikovsky; Mengelberg – Johann Strauss II; The Virtuoso String Quartet – Debussy’s Quartet, Mendelssohn; Robert Carr – “The trail of the lonesome pine”, “When love creeps in your heart”

To begin the New Year, I’m looking back as well as forwards. Mendelssohn and Purcell had anniversaries in 2009, so you can hear works by them, conducted by Henry Wood. There’s also a movement from one of Mendelssohn’s String Quartets, as a filler for the Virtuoso Quartet’s recording of the Debussy String Quartet. There will be more from this quartet and from Wood in 2010. Also I hope to make more recordings by Hamilton Harty available here – so as a sort of teaser, one of those odd Columbia couplings, of Harty conducting Tchaikovksy and Mengelberg conducting Johann Strauss II (which serves as a late acknowledgement of the New Year’s Day Concert). From the LP era, comes a delightful sounding recording of Bizet’s Arlèsienne Suites from Franz André, and three Balakirev works, probably recorded in the early to mid-1950s, but here remastered from a Saga LP.

And as a curio, and a continuation of unusual vocal recordings, the widely recorded bass Robert Carr sings two songs on a Winner record, including an early recording of the Trail of the Lonesome Pine – rather more lugubrious than the version with Stan and Ollie.

Bizet – L’Arlèsienne Suites 1 & 2

Mediafire link for Bizet – L’Arlèsienne Suites – Franz André

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Telefunken LGX 666021
Matrices LP037096-1B, 037097-1B
Recorded 1st October 1953
Issued 1954
L’ Orchestre Symphonique de la Radiodiffusion Nationale Belge, Franz André

Suite No.1 – I. Prelude
Suite No.1 – II. Minuetto No.1
Suite No.1 – III. Adagietto
Suite No.1 – IV. Carillon

Suite No.2 – I. Pastorale
Suite No.2 – II. Intermezzo
Suite No.2 – III. Minuetto No.2
Suite No.2 – IV. Farandole

Balakirev – Russia
Soviet Radio Symphony Orchestra, Konstantin Ivanov
Balakirev – Overture on Three Russian Themes
Soviet Radio Symphony Orchestra, Alexander Gauk
Balakirev – Tamara
Soviet Radio Symphony Orchestra, Nikolai Golovanov

Mediafire link for Balakirev – Orchestral works

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Saga Sovereign XID 5101
Matrices XID 5101A, 5101B
Issued 1961
Recorded 1952 (Golovanov), mid 1950s? other items. All in mono

Purcell arr. Henry J Wood – Suite in Five Movements

Mediafire link for Purcell-Wood – Suite in Five Movements – Wood

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Decca K.975/6
Matrices TA 2967-II, 2968-II, 2969-II, 2970-III
Recorded 2nd April 1937
Available from October 1941
The Queen’s Hall Orchestra, Sir Henry J. Wood
George Stratton,
leader

No.1. Prelude from Act 3 “Dioclesian” (Molto maestoso)
No.2. Minuet from “Distressed Innocence” (Tempo di minuetto)
No.3. Largo from “5th Sonata for Strings, in three parts”
No.4. Song of the Birds (Allegro from “Timon of Athens”) No.5. Vivace from “1st Sonata for Strings”

Mendelssohn – Fingal’s Cave Overture; Two Songs without words

Mediafire link for  Mendelssohn – Hebrides, Songs without words – Wood

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

Columbia 9843-4
Matrices WAX 4731-2, 4732-2, 4733-2, 4734-2 (S 808, 810, 811, 807)
Recorded 4th March 1929
Available from mid-September 1929 to February 1948
The New Queen’s Hall Orchestra, Sir Henry J. Wood

All sides run at about 76.8rpm

Fingal’s Cave Overture (“The Hebrides”) (3 sides)
Two Songs without Words – (1) Spring Song; (2) Bee’s Wedding (1 side)

Tchaikovksy – Mazeppa – Cossack Dance
Matrix CAX 6279-1
Recorded 12th February 1932
Hallé Orchestra, Sir Hamilton Harty

Johann Strauss II – Perpetuum Mobile
Matrix 6428-1
Recorded 11th May 1932, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam
Concertgebouw Orchestra, Amsterdam, Willem Mengelberg

Download – Tchaikovksy – Mazeppa – Cossack Dance – Harty

Download – Johann Strauss II _ Perpetuum Mobile – Mengelberg

(mp3 files – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

Columbia LX 240

Debussy – String Quartet in G minor Op.10
Mendelssohn – Quartet in Eb major Op.43 – II. Scherzo

Mediafire link for Debussy – String Quartet – Virtuoso Quartet

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

His Master’s Voice D 1058-1061
Matrices Cc 6690-II, 6691-V, 6692-VII, 6711-IIII, 6712-IIII, 6713-II, 6891-IV, 7021-I (single side numbers 08218/9, 08220/5)
Recorded 14th September 1925 (side 1), 18th September (side 4, 6) 4th December 1925 (side 2, 3, 5, 7), 21st October 1925 (Mendelssohn)

No.1. First Movement – Animé et très décidé (First Record)
No.2. First Movement – Animé et très décidé (Second Record)
No.3. Second Movement – Assez vif et bien rythmé
No.4. Third Movement – Andantino doucement expressif (First Record)
No.5. Third Movement – Andantino doucement expressif (Second Record)
No.6. Fourth Movement – Très modéré (First Record)
No.7. Fourth Movement – Très modéré (Second Record)
String Quartet in Eb major Op.44, No.3 – II. Scherzo: Assai leggiero vivace

Virtuoso String Quartet
Marjorie Hayward,
violin
Edwin Virgo, violin
Raymond Jeremy, viola
Cedric Sharpe, cello

Bennett Scott – When love creeps in your heart – Ballad (lyrics AJ Mills)
Harry Carroll – The trail of the lonesome pine – Popular song

Download – When love creeps – Robert Carr

Download – The trail of the lonesome pine – Robert Carr

(mp3 files – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

The Winner 2546
Matrices 1058B-2, 1059W-1 (3901)
Issued February 1914
Orchestra
Robert Carr, baritone

Play in E flat and A flat respectively at 80rpm

Landon Ronald – Glazunov Chopiniana, Mendelssohn Songs without words,Grieg Lyric Suite (1925 & 1933); Arthur De Greef, Landon Ronald – Liszt Concerto No.1, Saint-Saens Concerto No.2; Daisy Kennedy, Hamilton Harty – Beethoven Romance in G

The flurry of Landon Ronald recordings continues, again with accompaniments for Belgian pianist Arthur de Greef (1862 – 1940). De Greef’s recording of Liszt’s 1st Piano Concerto was not the first ever (that honour fell to Anderson Tyrer on Edison Bell Velvet Face, with Adrian Boult conducting), but is important as a recording of a significant work by a pupil of Liszt, despite the acoustic recording. After Liszt’s death, de Greef worked with Saint-Saens in Paris, so it is also significant that he recorded the 2nd Piano Concerto. The present transfer is of de Greef’s 1928 electrical recording. De Greef in fact made the first recording of this work, with Landon Ronald, on just four sides. A few years before, Ronald had conducted the 2nd movement on record for Irene Scharrer.

As well as these concerto recordings, there are several purely orchestral recordings here by Landon Ronald. He recorded Grieg’s Lyric Suite 3 times – the first was an acoustic recording in 1912, and he then recorded it twice electrically. These electrical recordings are from 1925 and 1933, both to be heard here. Also presented below is a 1933 recording of movements from Glazunov’s Chopiniana – orchestral arrangements of well-known works of Chopin, which became the basis for the ballet Les Sylphides. These are coupled with recordings of two of Mendelssohn’s Songs without words, also in orchestral guise. The Spring Song and Spinning Song were a popular combination – Ronald also recorded these same pieces acoustically in 1912 and 1923. The latter of these will appear here in due course.

Glazunov – Chopiniana Op.46

No.1 Polonaise Op.40 No.1
No.2 Nocturne Op.15 No.1
No.3 Tarantelle Op.43

Mendelssohn – Spring Song Op.62 No.2; Spinning Song (Bees’ Wedding) Op.67

Mediafire link for Glazunov – Chopiniana, and Mendelssohn – Landon Ronald

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

His Master’s Voice C 2638/9
Matrices 2B 4639-IIIA, 4641-II, 4642-II, 4643-I (single side numbers 32-3919/22)
Recorded 1933

London Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Grieg – Lyric Suite Op.54

Mediafire link for Grieg – Lyric Suite – Landon Ronald 1933

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

No.1. Shepherd Boy
No.2. Norwegian Rustic March
No.3. Nocturne
No.4. March of the Dwarfs

His Master’s Voice C 2642/3
Matrices 2B 4638-I, 4636-II, 4640-I, 4637-II (single side numbers 32-3917, 3915, 3918, 3916)
Recorded 1933

London Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Grieg – Lyric Suite Op.54

Mediafire link for Grieg – Lyric Suite – Landon Ronald 1925

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

No.1. Shepherd Boy
No.2. Norwegian Rustic March
No.3. Nocturne
No.4. March of the Dwarfs

His Master’s Voice D 1081/2
Matrices Cc 7229-II, 7230-II, 7254-II, 7255-I (single side numbers 4-0813/6)
Recorded 10th November 1925 (Nos. 1 & 2) and 13th November 1925 (Nos. 3 & 4), Hayes

Royal Albert Hall Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Saint-Saens – Piano Concerto No.2 in G minor Op.22

Mediafire link for Saint-Saens Concerto – De Greef, Ronald

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

1st movement – Andante sostenuto (2½ sides)
2nd movement – Allegro scherzando (1½ sides)
3rd movement – Presto (2 sides)

His Master’s Voice D 7458/60 (issued on standard coupling as D 1590/2)
Matrices CR 2110-I, 2111-IA, 2112-IIIA, 2114-I, 2113-IA, 2115-IIA (single side numbers 2-05644, 05645, 05646, 05648, 05647, 05649)
Recorded 26th June 1928, Queen’s Hall, London

Arthur de Greef, piano
New Symphony Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Liszt – Piano Concerto No.1 in E flat major

Mediafire link for Liszt Concerto No.1 – De Greef, Ronald

(This is a zip file – left click the link, download the file, then unzip when downloaded)

1st movement – Allegro maestoso (1¾ sides)
2nd movement – Quasi adagio (1¼ sides)
3rd movement – Allegretto vivace – Allegro animato (1½ sides)
4th movement – Allegro marziale animato (1½ sides)

His Master’s Voice D 890/2
Matrices Cc 1804-III, 1805-III, 1806-III, 1810-IV, 1822-V, 1823-V (single side numbers 05803/8)
Recorded 7th November 1922 (sides 1, 3), 11th September 1922 (side 2), 21st November 1922 (sides 4, 6), 21st September 1923 (side 5), Hayes

Arthur de Greef, piano
New Symphony Orchestra, Sir Landon Ronald

Another recording of the Australian violinist Daisy Kennedy, again with orchestra. This was the first recording, and the only acoustic one, of Beethoven’s Romance No.1 in G major for violin and orchestra. The recording is conducted by Hamilton Harty. Many thanks to Cheniston Roland of Violinland for providing the source for this recording.

Beethoven – Romance No.1 in G major Op.40

Download – Beethoven Romance No.1 – Daisy Kennedy, Hamilton Harty

(mp3 file – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

Columbia L1340
Matrices 76560-2, 76561-2
Recorded 1919
Available from August 1920 to July 1924
Daisy Kennedy, violin
Orchestra, Hamilton Harty

Mendelssohn with Harty, Mendelssohn’s Walpurgisnacht, Golschmann’s Shostakovich, Raybould, Goossens, Heger, Frank Mullings and Salvatore Salvati

This latest update sees a site redesign, and a number of new transfers on site. In the orchestral arena, we have Harty’s sparkling account of Mendelssohn’s Italian Symphony (afflicted by swish), Golschmann’s early 1950s LP recording of Shostakovich’s 5th Symphony, overtures conducted by Clarence Raybould (on Regal), and Eugene Goossens (on Edison Bell), and a Strauss excerpt under the baton of Robert Heger.

Vocal music comes in the form of two Handel arias from Frank Mullings (with Raybould conducting), two operatic arias from the tenor Salvatore Salvati, and a performance of Mendelssohn’s Die erste Walpurgisnacht, from a probably pseudonymous Everest LP.

Mendelssohn – Symphony No.4 in A major Op.90 “Italian”
Hallé Orchestra, Sir Hamilton Harty
Columbia DX 342-4

Matrices WAX 6054-2, 6055-2, 6056-1, 6-57=2, 6058-1, 6059-1 (14899, 14902, 14901, 14900, 14912, 14916)
Recorded 10th April 1931

I. Allegro vivace (1½ sides)

II. Andante con moto (1½ sides)

III. Con moto moderato (1 side)

IV. Finale: Saltarello-Presto (2 sides)

(mp3 files – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

Shostakovich – Symphony No.5 in D major Op.47
St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Vladimir Golschmann
Capitol Classics CTL.7077

Matrices P1.8268Y-1B, P2.8268Z.1B
Recorded 1953

I. Moderato

II. Allegretto

III. Largo

IV. Allegro non troppo

(mp3 files – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

Mendelssohn – Die erste Walpurgisnacht Op.60
Everest 3229 (Electronic Stereo)

Recorded ?

Mediafire link for Mendelssohn – Walpurgisnacht

(These are zip files – left click the link, download the files, then unzip when downloaded)

Overture: The Change of Winter to Spring
1. A Druid and Chorus of the People
2. An Aged Woman and Chorus of the People
3. A Druid Priest and Chorus of Druids
4. Chorus of Druid Guards and People
5. A Druid Guard
6. Chorus of Guards and People
7. A Druid Priest and Chorus
8. A Christian Guard and Chorus of Guards
9. A Druid Priest and Chorus of Druids and People

“Lorenzo Bernardi and Chorus and Orchestra of the Leipzig Bach Festival”

This recording, presumably from a German or Austrian radio source, leaves its soloists (soprano, tenor and bass) unnamed. The conductor and other performers seem to be pseudonymous. Although the first side of the record is roughly at correct pitch, the second side drifts downwards until a horrendous edit about a minute from the end, where the pitch and ambience are suddenly hugely different. This final section may even come from a different performance. I have endeavoured to fix the pitch, and reduce the jarring effect of the change of sound quality. I’ve also mixed the sound back to mono.

I’ve included the closing passage of the work prior to pitch adjustment, so that the grating effect of this awful edit can be fully appreciated.

If any recognises any of the soloists or indeed the whole performance, do let me know!

 

Donizetti – La Favorita – Una vergine
Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – Brindisi
Phonycord Flexible Nr 151
Matrices 8235, 8241
Recorded 1930
Orchestra
Salvatore Salvati, tenor

Download – Donizetti – La Favorita – Una vergine – Salvati

Download – Mascagni – Cavalleria Rusticana – Brindisi – Salvati

(mp3 files – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

These are taken from a flexible disc recording, which was badly warped, and not easily persuaded to lie flat. They therefore had to be recorded below speed to ensure the stylus tracked the groove, and this has had an effect on the level of surface noise.

 

Handel – Semele – Where’er you walk
Handel – Jephtha – Deeper and Deeper Still
Columbia 9350

Matrices WAX 1898-1, 1900-1 (6585, 6583)
Recorded 13th September 1926
Available from 12th February 1928 to January 1937
Orchestra, Clarence Raybould
Frank Mullings, tenor

Download – Handel – Semele – Where’er you walk – Mullings

Download – Handel – Jephtha – Deeper and Deeper Still – Mullings

(mp3 files – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

This was a reissue of L1344, available from October 1926 to February 1928. An earlier version of L1344 was available from February 1920 to October 1926 – with recordings made on 5th May 1919, with Hamilton Harty conducting.

Curiously, although the Semele aria maintains correct pitch, the Jephtha increases speed slightly. The Jephtha aria is also notable for the variety of tone colour used by Mullings.

Beethoven – Egmont Overture
Regal G1084

Matrices WAX 5186-1, 5187-2 (12757/8)
Recorded 3rd October 1929
Available from February 1930 to March 1941
Classic Symphony Orchestra, Clarence Raybould

Thomas – Raymond – Overture
Regal MX8

Matrices WAX 5318-1, 5319-2 (13162, 13161)
Recorded 4th January 1930. Recorded in a concert hall
Available from June 1930 to March 1941
Classic Symphony Orchestra, Clarence Raybould

Download – Beethoven – Egmont – Raybould

Download – Thomas – Raymond – Raybould

(mp3 files – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

All of the above sides play at slightly below 78rpm.

 

R. Strauss – Feuersnot – Love Scene
His Master’s Voice C1841

Matrices CW 2161-IA, CW 2162-II (6-0659/60)
Recorded January 1929
Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Robert Heger

Download – R. Strauss – Feuersnot – Love Scene – Heger

(mp3 file – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

The recording session was between the 9th and 25th January 1929.

 

Wagner – The Meistersingers – Overture
Edison Bell Velvet Face 523

Matrices X1163K-1, X1164F-2
Recorded 1921
Available from October 1922
Goossens Orchestra, Eugene Goossens

Download – Wagner – The Meistersingers – Overture – Goossens

(mp3 file – right click the link, then select “Save as” or click the play button)

Both sides play at almost 82rpm.

There is a gap of several bars between the two sides. The first side finishes on the first beat of bar 96 (with an E major chord), and the second starts at bar 122 (with an E flat major chord). This prevents an adequate side join.