Seek out a better experience, upgrade to a full membership! (Learn more)
 News Classical 08/03/2018

Leonard Bernstein Centenary: The Maestro's Complete Works As Composer To Be Available For The First Time!

Leonard Bernstein Centenary: The Maestro's Complete Works As Composer To Be Available For The First Time!

Video news

Our news in your mail

* indicates required
News frequency *

New York, NY (Top40 Charts / UMe) Deutsche Grammophon/UMe marks the Leonard Bernstein centenary (born August 25, 1918) in suitably monumental style. For the first time, Bernstein's complete works will be available on CD in a single boxed set, as will his legacy as a conductor. In addition there will be a series of spectacular new releases and reissues reflecting some of the many high points of this multifaceted musician's rich and varied career - the legendary Beethoven recordings of the 1970s, for example, as well as previously unreleased live recordings from Tanglewood, Mass with Yannick Nézet-Séguin and, of course, examples of Bernstein's celebrated work in musical theatre.

Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990) was a man of many roles - composer, conductor, pianist, musical educator - a man hailed by pianist Arthur Rubinstein as a "universal genius." A charismatic communicator, he had few equals when it came to enthusing others about music. Whether at festivals such as Tanglewood in the U.S. or Schleswig-Holstein in northern Germany, in a TV studio or a university lecture hall, Bernstein's presence, passion and unquestioned commitment to his art were palpable.

That same intensity also characterised his work as a performer. A number of his recordings still have reference status - his Mahler cycle, for instance, or Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue with Bernstein himself at the piano. The son of a Ukrainian immigrant, he knew no musical boundaries: he played jazz, engaged with Jewish folk traditions, and was as at home on Broadway as he was in Europe's venerable opera houses. In his own music seriousness stands cheek by jowl with satire, musical with Mass, the modern with the traditional. His reinterpretation of Beethoven's Ninth as an "Ode to Freedom" in Berlin, shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall, was simply unforgettable. Less than a year later, he died of cancer.

His work remains, however, and an incredible range of recordings will now be issued by Deutsche Grammophon at regular intervals throughout the anniversary year. Both familiar material and rarities are on the menu, as is a set of world-premiere recordings, with DG releases planned for virtually every month, the label's schedule running in parallel with the Leonard Bernstein Office's "Leonard Bernstein at 100" centennial celebration program. At the heart of the DG project are the two editions of Bernstein's œuvre as composer and performer respectively. Bernstein - Complete Recordings on Deutsche Grammophon and Decca, available March 9, contains all of Bernstein's recordings as a conductor for DG and Decca, together with his complete DG/Unitel DVD catalog. Comprising 121 CDs, 36 DVDs and a Blu-ray Audio disc, it features such legendary recordings as Wagner's Tristan und Isolde (1981), Bizet's Carmen (1972), works by Stravinsky and Shostakovich and, of course, the complete symphonies of Beethoven and Mahler. Pre-order Bernstein - Complete Recordings on Deutsche Grammophon and Decca: - VIEW TRAILER FOR COMPLETE RECORDINGS ON DG AND DECCA

Bernstein - Complete Works is the first full set of recordings of Bernstein's published works, making available less familiar pieces such as his chamber music or his songs alongside worldwide hits such as West Side Story and the Chichester Psalms. It also includes a number of fresh recordings made expressly for this edition, notably American pianist Katie Mahan's survey of his piano music, from the early Sonata (1938) right through to Thirteen Anniversaries (1988). Bernstein - Complete Works comprises 25 CDs and 3 DVDs and will be released May 11.

As a prelude to the centenary-year celebrations, November 2017 saw the release of perhaps the most famous Bernstein recordings of all: the nine Beethoven symphonies with the Vienna Philharmonic. Not only artistic and musical benchmarks, they also established new technical standards through their use of quadraphonic sound. These legendary performances from 1977/78 can now once again be enjoyed, both on 5 CDs and on a Blu-ray Audio disc on which they are presented for the first time in surround sound. They will also be released on vinyl as a 9-LP limited edition on April 13.

The Tanglewood Tapes, to be issued in June 2018, are an absolute world premiere. They comprise 5 CDs of previously unreleased live recordings from the Tanglewood Festival - the unique music festival whose early days were presided over by Bernstein's mentor Serge Koussevitzky and with which Bernstein himself maintained close links throughout his life. Among audio files spanning almost half a century are some real gems, including excerpts from Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade dating back to the early 1940s. As a whole, they provide a fascinating insight into Bernstein's development as a conductor.

Candide and West Side Story made music history as stage works that defied all existing generic conventions. Bernstein recorded both works himself, and his readings were released in January 2018 in newly presented deluxe hardcover editions. The Candide box brings together for the first time the live concert recording from London's Barbican Centre (on DVD) and the studio recording on CD (both dating from December 1989), with a bonus in the form of a brief but highly amusing introduction to the plot of this operatic satire by Bernstein himself.

The new West Side Story edition will also appeal to both ear and eye. The CD presents the famous 1984 recording with José Carreras and Kiri Te Kanawa, while the accompanying "Making of" DVD gives some breathtaking insights into Bernstein's rehearsal process. A booklet of over 100 pages with libretto, articles and photographs completes the offering.

Among the many other productions associated with the Bernstein centenary, one in particular deserves special mention. A two-disc recording of Mass, a work rarely performed because it demands such huge forces, is set for release by DG on March 16. Canadian star conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin directs the Philadelphia Orchestra, three choirs and a line-up of no fewer than 19 vocal soloists.

There are many ways in which to discover the musical phenomenon that was Leonard Bernstein. In his anniversary year, let Deutsche Grammophon be your guide.

Most read news of the week Yearly Ad-free Subscriptions Now Available
French Jazz Aficionado And Electronic Producer David Federmann Wows With Contemporary New Video
Charismatic Country Artist Dave McElroy Serenades His Love On Energizing New Single Nowhere With You
Indie Electro Duo Let's Mars Release New Single "Dedicated"
Emerging Pop Artist Harper Starling Teams Up With Famed DJ/Production Duo The Perry Twins For #2 Billboard Breakout Anthem "Euphoria"
Nile Rodgers To Be Honored With Chairman's Award At 60th Anniversary Music Biz 2018 Conference
Van Morrison Joins Forces With Jazz Organ Virtuoso Joey DeFrancesco On You're Driving Me Crazy, A New Studio Album Available On April 27, 2018
Charlie Farley Delivers One-two Punch With Two Pack Single March 9, 2018
The Nels Cline 4 To Release "Currents, Constellations" On April 13; New 2-Guitar Band With Julian Lage, Scott Colley & Tom Rainey
Legacy Recordings Announces Eclectic Assortment Of Collectible 7", 12" Vinyl And Cassette Titles For Record Store Day 2018 (Saturday, April 21)
Lisa LaRue To Release New Retrospective Album "Origins" Featuring Gilli Smyth, John Payne, Michael Sadler And Others On Melodic Revolution Records
Blacklite District Releases Official & Minecraft Music Videos For "Goodbye"
Blues Hall Of Fame Inductees Announced: Roebuck "Pops" Staples, Sam Lay, Georgia Tom Dorsey
"An Under-Sung National Treasure" (UNCUT Magazine)- Vinny Peculiar Releases New Album
Tom Rush, Legendary Folk Singer/Song-Finder, Readies 'Voices,' First Album Of Originals, Out April 27, 2018

© 2001-2019 (S4)
about | advertise | site map
contact | privacy
Page gen. in 0.0120080 secs // 4 () queries in 0.0089459419250488 secs
Members Area
Register or login with just your e-mail address

A validation link will be sent to your e-mail. The link will expire in 15'.
Latest charts