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Dvorak: Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra (Speakers Corner)
The Cello Concerto op. 104 is the last orchestral piece Dvorák wrote during his stay in America. Unlike his Ninth Symphony which borrowed folkloric themes from the New World, the charming Cello Concerto reveals Dvorák's yearning for his Bohemian homeland.
This piece demands masterly playing and interpretation from the soloist which is enhanced by a sumptuous sound in the strings and explosive brass. Dvorák reaches back to various musical passages from the first and second movements in the finale and so illustrates his style of composition in his later works.
Yearning for the Old World must have motivated George Szell to briefly leave his adopted home, the USA, in order to set down this late-Romantic musical gem together with the master cellist Pierre Fournier and the Berlin Philharmonic.
The artists were obviously inspired by this favourable constellation during the recording which sets the standards for artistic quality and perfection of sound technology. Indeed, this LP is among the most successful classical productions of the Sixties. Thirty years on, this recording is just as popular as it ever was.
Recording: June 1961 at the Jesus-Christus-Kirche, Berlinby GÜnter Hermanns / Hans Weber
About Speakers Corner
At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Speakers Corner all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.
During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existant tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.
A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.
We should like to emphasise that Speakers Corner Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle. We have one digital recording in our catalogue (Alan Parsons / Eye In The Sky"), but even in this particular case we used the analogue tapes for cutting.
We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.
To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects - excluding the exception above - and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.Dvorák: Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra
Pierre Fournier and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by George Szell$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Beethoven: Triple Concerto in CFerenc Fricsay conducts the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra and pianist Geza Anda, violinist Wolfgang Schneiderhan and cellist Pierre Fournier on a performance of Beethoven's Triple Concerto in C major, Op 56. 180g vinyl pressing from Clearaudio.
The widespread interest both in the technical capabilities of solo instruments and in the symphony, whose formal outlines became established toward the end of the 18th century, accounts for the popularity at that time of "concertante symphonies" in which several solo instruments (strings, wind) combined to oppose the orchestra. Despite the popularity, Beethoven was correct when he wrote about his Triple Concerto "that a concertante with these three solo parts is something new."
The novelty lay in the usage of this connection with the piano. The difference between the piano's method of tone production and that of the other instruments alongside the piano's "mechanics" resulted in tonal problems. These problems arose both within the solo trio and in its relationship to the orchestra. Beethoven, who was interested throughout his whole career in experiments to extend the scope of instrumental music, here combined the styles of chamber music and of concertante symphonic writing to great effect.
Ferenc Fricsay (conductor)
Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra Geza Anda (piano)
Wolfgang Schneiderhan (violin)
Pierre Fournier (cello)1. Allegro
2. Largo (attacca)
3. Rondo alla polacca$44.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now