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Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue - Concerto in F - An American in Paris

Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue - Concerto in F - An American in Paris

17 Mar 2008

£6.09 (VAT included if applicable)

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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 1 Oct 1998
  • Release Date: 1 Oct 1998
  • Label: Warner Classics
  • Copyright: (C) 1998 EMI Records Ltd.
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 1:05:10
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B002A62I3E
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 45,714 in MP3 Albums (See Top 100 in MP3 Albums)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Mr. R. B. Ager on 6 Feb 2004
Format: Audio CD
This CD really does live up to its label of Great Recordings of the Century.
Dating from the mid 1970s it is a shamelessly sumptuous collection of Gershwin's three most popular concert pieces, performed by what was then arguably the world's most popular, certainly most charismatic, orchestra and conductor.
The recording quality, pre-digital age, was both warm and dynamic, and from the first soaring note of the clarinet of the rhapsody to the final climactic chord of the piano concerto it had this listener, who up until then had been completely impervious to anything more classical than Cliff Richard, enthralled.
The same holds true today. I've heard many other versions of these pieces, and while all have their merits nothing beats this.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Dr. H. A. Jones TOP 500 REVIEWER on 31 Aug 2012
Format: Audio CD
Here André Previn plays and directs the London Symphony Orchestra in three works from 20th century America that are now in the standard classical repertoire: the orchestral score from 1928 that inspired the 1951 film on the same theme of An American in Paris; and two works for piano and orchestra - the First Rhapsody or Rhapsody in Blue and the Piano Concerto in F Major. Rhapsody in Blue was composed by Gershwin in 1924 under a commission from Paul Whiteman for his all-white band to play but it had to be orchestrated by Whiteman's pianist, Ferde Grofe. By the time Gershwin came to write the piano concerto the following year he had learned enough about orchestration to be able to do the job himself. Even when playing the classics, Previn seems to inject some magic from his role as jazz pianist in the light and shade of his performances. Much as I enjoy Oscar Levant's performances of these pieces in mono, my first choice for performance would have to be for Previn as soloist and conductor.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought the LP when it was first released: loved it then; love it now. The American dream that was.
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By S. Law on 12 Jan 2014
Format: Audio CD
Andre Previn's LSO Gershwin disc from EMI is a classic. It may be the greatest recording of these works. The Concerto in F has an atmosphere unlike any other recording I've heard. The slow movement in particular is truly magical. An American in Paris is given a similarly powerful performance. Although Mr. Previn makes some optional cuts in Rhapsody in Blue his panache coupled with the sumptuous recording and playing of the LSO sweep you away. Thanks to pioneering recordings like this there can be no doubt this unforgettable music belongs in the concert hall alongside the other great composers of the 20th Century. For anyone wanting to find a way into appreciating classical music this could be your ticket!
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By Christopher W. Brierley TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 22 Dec 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I did have this on vinyl, but I stopped playing vinyl years ago, so decided to replace my LP's with CD's and that's how I came to own it. The performances are big, classical, despite the jazz roots of the conductor, the jazz is, well not very obvious. This is often the case, scores get bigger and modified, then become overblown with the excitement of the jazzy originals lost.
See ASIN: B000001GEK and my review for my recommendations of Gershwin.
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The Rhapsody in blue is great but cannot say that I am a great fan of An American in Paris
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Shaolin_monkey on 18 Feb 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've been on the lookout for a decent rendition of Gershwin's orchestral works for ages, as my previous taped version went the way of the dodo. I thought with Previn in charge of the LSO, I was on to a winner with this CD. Not so unfortunately.

First things first - the LSO is absolutely superb, subtle, pinpoint accuracy, played with gusto and feeling. An absolutely stellar performance.

Unfortunately not Previn. For want of a better word, he seems ham-fisted. He hammers those keys as if he's trying to break the piano. While fast and technically competent, there's no feeling or subtlety at all. I've heard a few renditions of Rhapsody in Blue, played by pianists of varying standard, and while not all technically perfect, the lack there was far surpassed by the colour of their playing. Poor old Previn misses the mark in this respect, and then some.

However, it definitely isn't a total write off, hence the three stars. As an introduction to the works of Gershwin, this CD does push some of the right buttons. If only there had been a pianist up to the same standard as the LSO.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Peter Hemsworth on 28 Aug 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The very high standard of playing and recording on this disc is a recommendation - but if you want an orchestral version of the Rhapsody in Blue without cuts this will not be for you. Gershwin seems to have authorised a few cuts, but Previn appears to make one (very big) one of his own. The piece is relatively short and it is a shame to present it with totally unannounced cuts - hence the two stars.
For anyone wanting the orchestral version of the Rhapsody played in its entirety, the recording by Eugene Ormandy is highly recommendable.
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