Albert Coates’s 140th birthday

As it’s the anniversary of Albert Coates’s birthday, I present my customary update.

This year it’s Coates in his familiar Wagner, but a recording that has been elusive on reissues. Coates recorded Siegfried’s Rhine Journey from Götterdämmerung twice. On 25th January 1926 Coates conducted a substantial Wagner recording session at the Queen’s Hall with an anonymous Symphony Orchestra. The session included Siegfried’s Funeral March and his second recording of the Magic Fire Music from Die Walküre. This Rhine Journey was issued on HMV D1080. This version has received several CD reissues.
On 29 October 1929 Coates recorded the Rhine Journey again (HMV D 1777), alongside remakes of the Funeral March and the Magic Fire Music. This time he conducted the London Symphony Orchestra, again in the Queen’s Hall. The Magic Fire and Magic Fire were issued in May and July 1930 respectively. The Funeral March remained unissued until July 1938, and is elusive! For some reason, these three re-recordings have not been reissued on LP or CD.

The orchestra for this session consisted of 16 first violins, 12 seconds, 8 violas, 8 cellos, 6 basses, 1 piccolo, 4 flutes, 3 oboes, 3 clarinets, 1 cor anglais, 2 bassoons, 2 contra- bassoons, 8 horns, 1 bass clarinet, 3 trumpets, 3 tenor trom­bones, 1 bass trombone, 2 tubas, 2 timpani, 2 harps, 1 bass trumpet, 4 percussion, 4 Wagner tubas.

Wagner – Götterdämmerung – Siegfried’s Journey to the Rhine – LSO, Coates

His Master’s Voice D 1777
Matrices CR 2463-III, CR 2464-IIA (side numbers 32-985, 32-986)
Recorded 29th October 1929, Queen’s Hall, London
London Symphony Orchestra, Albert Coates

Comments are closed.