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What Do You Have On Order?

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In reply to an earlier post on 15 Oct 2010 15:37:39 BDT
[Deleted by the author on 9 Nov 2010 20:46:56 GMT]

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Oct 2010 15:37:45 BDT
Edgar Self says:
Hallo, Ryan -- Sutherland's Puritani, Beatrice di Tenda, Norma, and Sonnambula (but not Traviata) all come in a Decca box (no libretti) that I like. Parity of Australia I'm following the comments about "the naturals", R. Strauss and Elgar on the other thread.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Oct 2010 15:44:39 BDT
Hello Lez,

Thank you for your kind advice and, no, you didn't confuse. I have tried the French Amazon, but I originally found that it would take too long (ha!) and that it was more expensive than the US site. The UK Amazon was sold out, as was Canada from memory. But you're right, it is worth a try to investigate other sources before relying on Amazon.

I haven't had experience with Berkshire, but I'll certainly consult it in future orders. As you've been so kind to me, I might share some alternative sources of which you may be unaware in Australia:
1. Wesley Classics (based in Western Australia);
2. Buywell (which is the major source for the budget Eloquence label - including major recordings from DGG, Decca, Phillips and ABC Radio);
3. Fish Records (based in Sydney: may not ship overseas, but it's worth a try).

Unfortunately, Australian prices are fairly expensive in my experience, that's why I do most of my shopping online.

Anyway, I'm glad I've found a fellow Crespin-lover on here! She truly is an amazing force of a voice! The Berlioz Nuits d'ete were also the first experience I had with her. I was so caught up in it myself that I wrote a review. It's one of my desert island discs.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Oct 2010 15:48:37 BDT
Hello Piso,

Wow, that would be quite a box! But I already bought the Norma in its original format (or is that the earlier set?).

Generally I am a bigger fan of Sutherland in her later career as the voice developed a more mature, weighty and overall more dramatic verve to it. Nevertheless, I like ALL Sutherland. So, the eventual order became:

1. Bellini: I Puritani (Sutherland, Pavarotti, Cappucilli, Ghiaurov, Bonynge);
2. Verdi: La Traviata (Sutherland, Pavarotti, Manuguerra, Bonynge);
3. AN ESPECIAL TREAT: Possibly SUtherland's earliest recording of an opera: Handel: Alcina (Live 1958 recording from Cologne with Fritz Wunderlich and Ferdinand Leitner);
4. Saint-Saens, Ravel and Debussy: Orchestral Works (a la the BPO/Karajan).

Have a wonderful week all.

Posted on 16 Oct 2010 16:10:47 BDT
Ryan: Earlier than Alcina, not typical Sutherland and only a minor role, she is Woglinde in Kempe's Ring Cycle from Covent Garden (1957).

There are some excellent releases on Australian Eloquence but Amazon UK has a highly eccentric pricing policy for them - some are bargains, others ludicrously overpriced.

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Oct 2010 01:25:29 BDT
Last edited by the author on 17 Oct 2010 01:26:52 BDT
Edgar Self says:
Thanks, Ryan. I've ordered from Buywell, some CDs by the excellent Kiwi bariton Teddy Tahu Rhodes, who is also a powerful actor. How doesd (do?) the Antipodes manage to produce so many fine musicians and singers? One of the first I consciously heard was the short-lived basso Oscar Natzke, a marvelous singer, and I believe another New Zealander.

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Oct 2010 10:42:32 BDT
Piso: Yes, we are blessed with an abundance of talent. Although unfortunately most of the talent tends to move overseas due to richer opportunities for flourishing of their careers. It is an indictment on Australian 'culture' that it does not respect the arts (opera and classical music) more in this modern age. But once, things were much better (thus Dame Nellie Melba, Dame Joan, Yvonne Minton and many others).

Although there is one talent I particularly enjoy seeing at the moment (and she still works very closely with Richard Bonynge): Emma Matthews. She made her Covent Garden name in Lulu OR the Cunning Little Vixen I think. I have recently seen both her Amina (La Sonnambula) and Gilda (Rigoletto). Wonderful.

Geoffrey: I am not familiar with that Ring cycle. Is it a recent release? I will have to check it out. Kempe is certainly well regarded in other Wagner operas (especially his recording of Lohengrin). But my authorities are Furtwangler, Karajan and Bohm in my collection (three very separate visions of the Wagnerian oeuvre).

I have been a long collector of Eloquence. It was the first real collecting I did, but these days I tend to stick to the major label releases. Interestingly though, I tend not to buy anything recorded after the 1980s (unless it's Anne Sofie von Otter). That Golden Age (1950s-70s) really offers so much I could buy for the next ten years and probably only scratch the surface!

Posted on 19 Oct 2010 11:57:04 BDT
Ryan: Kempe's Covent Garden Ring Cycle has been available from Testament for a couple of years. It is taken from a private recording made by Lord Harewood and so the mono sound is varaible in quality with a couple of very rough patches in Gotterdammerung. The principals are more or less the same as the Keilberth Ring from 1955 (also available on Testament in very early stereo) except Brunnhilde is sung by Nilsson rather than Varnay. I suppose the main attraction is for Kempe enthusiasts; there is another mono Ring cycle from Bayreuth (1960) conducted by him that has been intermittently available (with Hopf instead of Windgassen). Kempe was a great Wagnerian and he is the conductor who should have made a studio recording, if only EMI hadn't been so feeble and unimaginitive.

Posted on 8 Nov 2010 08:26:25 GMT
Tchaikovsky/Higdon: Violin Concertos
Jennifer Higdon's violin concerto played by Hilary Hahn

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Nov 2010 09:10:44 GMT
Edgar Self says:
Geoffrey of Monmouth and Ryan of Tohellandgong -- The small print in the cast of "Goetterdaemerung" in one of those Testament "Rings" interestingly reveals that the part of Guenther is sung by ... Hans Hotter!, recently freed from his Wotan/Wanderer duties and so available for a new assignment. Hotter sometimes did double duty as Guenther so as to have something to do in the final opera pf the trilogy-with-prologue, like Aeschylus's "The Oresteia" that was Wagner's model, not tetralogy as we casually say sometimes. No great harm done, as there are four of the blighters, but it does play down Wagner's connexion with Aeschylus, which is where he first got his odd notion. Hotter otherwise would not have appeared, because Wotan or Wanderer are not in "Goetterdaemmerung", taken up as it is with Other Matters. I trust Basil is perusing this approvingly?

At Bayreuth when I saw Keilberth's "Ring", Hotter did not assume Guenther. Another baritone did, unintentionally creating an anticlimax, which I think was not Wagner's intention, in that Hans Hotter was the dominant and most splendid thing in the "Ring", and the interest retired when he vanished in a striding fury of cloak and robe after his grandson challenged him and broke his staff, a bad omen of things to come, totally phallic of course. In the town, Bayreuthers and Festival-goers alike referred to Hotter simply as "The God". He was the greatest thing I've seen on any stage (I did not see Lord Larry Olivier, and was quite small when they carried me to hear Fyodor Chaliapin -;).

Interestingly, Gustav Neidlinger was Hotter's buddy from Munich; they worked together whenever possible, and Neidlinger was the superb Alberich of his day.

The other singers in that Bayreuth "Ring" were Martha Moedl, Regina Resnick, Wolfgang Windgassen, Gustav Neidlinger, Max Lorenz, Paul (Peter?) Kuen, Georgina von Milankovic, Maria von Ilosvay, and "Gravelly" Joseph Greindl, who tripped on the blasted parabola and almost rolled off into the Mysterious Depths of the orchestra pit, where players were already scattering for safety to avoid having their instruments smashed by the hurtling Giant. He managed to execute a self-arrest at the lip of the crater.

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Nov 2010 10:12:44 GMT
Always fascinating information Piso. I very much like Gustav Neidlinger and Josef Greindl. As for Hotter, a little 'cooler' for me. Oh dear, a bad joke after a 3 1/4 hour exam :-(

Signing off, Ryan of Wollongong

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Nov 2010 10:39:19 GMT
Edgar Self says:
Ryan, you are just understandably feverish from the exam and standing on your head. Rob't. Stuart over in Sydney has trouble with his turps in upside-down jars, but you must all be even wearier of these tired antipodlean witticisms.

Actually on the day Hans Hotter landed in England to do some good deeds at Covent Garden, he glimpsed a headling, "HOTTER IN ENGLAND" and was vastly pleased with himself and even the notorious English weather.

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Nov 2010 06:28:58 GMT
Always happy to hear the 'antipodean witticisms' Piso. I am delighted with your curiosity at me living on my head!

I have a lovely order of Bach motets (from Masaaki Suzuki and his Bach Collegium Japan, a January 2010 release). That is a birthday present for a relative. I also am STILLLLLLLLL awaiting my own birthday present : the Regine Crespin album. I tell you this solemnly, I have never waited so long for an order from and it has permanently left a bad taste in my mouth regarding American amazon. I have never had such troubles with the UK version. Apparently it should be to me by early December. That will be a wait of nearly 3 months.

The other part of the order finally shipped last week so should be here next week: Vivaldi's Farnace from the Naive label, again for a relative.

I am also considering getting that wonderful old Christmas album (but totally new to me) from Leontyne Price and Herbert von Karajan with the VPO. Should be lovely for the upcoming festive season.

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Nov 2010 16:54:38 GMT
Last edited by the author on 9 Nov 2010 16:57:08 GMT
Edgar Self says:
Sorry for your travails of truly Amazonian proportions, Ryan. It must have something to do with the spectacular rise of your Australian dollar or change of government. Indeed what else could it be? You haven chosen well ... as how could you not, betwixt your own innate good taste and the expert and furiously disagreeing indoctrinations of the Forae ... and I'm sure will be rewarded if not in this world, then the next. Your training in finance and International law may yet come into play and be useful.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Nov 2010 00:22:45 GMT
Good Lord Piso have I given the impression that I study finance? Heavens no. I am a man of the humanities and law (history and philosophy are my true callings).

But thank you for your kind words. As for the Regine album I am so tired of waiting for it I almost don't want it anymore. Still I am having a Regine listening moratorium until I get the thing! Should be a birthday-turned-Christmas present by the time I get it.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Nov 2010 01:28:30 GMT
Edgar Self says:
I was twitting your curriculum, and your A-dollar, Ryan, the one Kim Beasley calls the Pacific Peso. I know you are "reading Law" as they used to call it, and thought only to amuse you (or myself) But don't give up, don't let them get away with it, and get what you want out of it, or get even at least. If you find it elsewhere at the same or better price, you'd be justified in taking the satisfaction of cancelling your order if they continue to protract and dilate.

The worst they could do is emulate William F. Buckley's response to a dissatisfied reader of the journal he edited: "Cancel your own g-----n subscription!" -;)

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Nov 2010 04:54:56 GMT
Thank you Piso. I just checked and they should send it next week. If they don't I may well cancel it armed with the Buckley quotation :-)

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Nov 2010 11:59:56 GMT
Edgar: The cast lists for the Covent Garden and 1955 Bayreuth Gotterdammerungs (Testanent) both have Hermann Uhde singing Gunther. Testament have released at least one other Keilberth/Gotterdammerung but I haven't heard it.

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Nov 2010 13:26:30 GMT
Edgar Self says:
Thanks, Geoffrey. Hermann Uhde was much-admired as the Dutchman and in other Wagnerian roles of his time, but my heart belongs to Hotter, whose elocution, timbre, and other unusual vocal qualities made him paramount at that time. I also saw him in four operas on stage, and that made a difference also. Walter Kreppel, Ferdinand Franz, George London, and Otto Edelmann follow in no particular order as prominent portrayers of Wotan, the rather impotent and therefore more interesting god, more humanly relatable, if that's what I mean to say, so to seak, which I doubt.

Posted on 14 Nov 2010 17:00:48 GMT
Last edited by the author on 14 Nov 2010 18:27:13 GMT
I never heard Hotter live but he is my favourite Wotan. I have him in complete cycles from Krauss, Keilberth and Kempe (ROH), also as the Wanderer with Kempe (Bayreuth 1960), Wotan/Wanderer for Solti, where unfortunately he was past his best and best of all with Nilsson in Walkure Act III, Scene 3 (Ludwig/Philharmonia).

On order: Tallis Complete Works - Chapelle du Roi/Dixon

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Nov 2010 22:49:11 GMT
Last edited by the author on 14 Nov 2010 23:00:00 GMT
On order - the symphonies of Benjamin Frankel. CPO are currently being carried through the current global recession single-handedly by me, having invested in the Toch symphonies (worth hearing, a long way from being "in your face", but worthy, and if we are to consider him an American symphonist, nothing like the Schumans, Pistons Harrisses and Coplands of this world - closer to Hindemith I'd say...) and with the Atterberg and Rangstrom sets on my wish list.
Anyone wish to comment? When I mentioned Toch I got some nice good luck messages, but nobody seemed to know him too well. I recommend him, by the way! Maybe with a composer closer to home I might get more success.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Nov 2010 00:01:02 GMT
Last edited by the author on 15 Nov 2010 00:05:03 GMT
Basilides says:
I couldn't recommend Frankel's symphonies I'm afraid. Like Schulhoff's they ALL sound like war symphonies, one after another, with far too much use of the side drum and kettle drum.
As far as I'm concerned they are all consigned to the museum of musical history. We don't need them now, there are far greater, and in fact truer and more honest ones to reflect those bad times.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Nov 2010 04:59:04 GMT
Edgar Self says:
Geoffrey Cryer -- The list never ends. Some other admirable Wotans were Herbert Janssen, a little light for the part for sensitive, and with Helen Traubel, one of the best Brunnhildes of her day, steady as a rock and as gleaming as Nothung ... Heinz Rehfuss, in roughly the same category as Janssen, and Paul Schoeffler, who sang many of the same roles as Hans Hotter. Schorr was a marvelous Hans Sachs, which I saw sing when he was 64 at San Francisco Opera. To some he recalled the legendary Friedrich Schorr.

One of the best of Hotter's Wotans is his first made in 1938 with Bruno Walter, Lotte Lehmann, and Lauritz Melchior, the "A" team of their day. It's now very cheap on Naxos, well-transferred, and sounds superb in the Act II excerpts, with standard cuts of the day. It comes with the 1935 Act I of Lehmann, Emanel List, and Melchior, whichi was never been surpassed.

Hotter was 28 years old and had not yet sung a stage Wotan, although he was to do so later that year in Paris. The splendour of his hyoung voice is incomparable. Then came some 1942 sutidio arias, and a live 1944 "Dutchman" with Clemens Krauss and, regrettably, Mrs. Krauss, Viorica Ursuleac.

Posted on 15 Nov 2010 10:31:03 GMT
Last edited by the author on 15 Nov 2010 10:35:49 GMT
I have the Walkure Act I from Walter, Melchior etc and it is indeed very fine but I also have a Dresden recording from 1944 with Lorenz/Teschemacher/Bohme under Elmendorff which I think is equally good and with excellent sound.

I forgot to mention I also have Hotter singing the Rheingold Wotan under Knappertsbusch (Bayreuth 1956) in which (dare I say it) he sounds a little bored.

Robert: I am glad you enjoyed the Toch! As I said, for some reason he keeps turning up in my recommendations. If he only rates 'worthy' I might try my local record library before committing to purchase.

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Nov 2010 13:22:34 GMT
Edgar Self says:
Geoffrey -- Unllike the mediocre, Hans Hotter was not always at his best, perhaps always inclined to a sllightly woofy sound in accord with his great height and general persona-stature, but when he was on, he was on. The famous wobble came later. Hotter also suffered, as I do, from terminal hay fever and hystaminic allergies, whicvh in his case were often at their height in June but persisted into July-August, wen Bayreuth has its festival.

I saw Max Lorenz as Siegmund there in 1954 and cannot think you would have been pleased, but that was ten years after the Elmendorff record you like. Elmendorff conducted an early Bayreuth "Tannhaeuser" for records around 1930. Lorenz had been taken out of mothballs and dragooned into Bayreuth service when another tenor proved even more unpalatable or else his plane crashed, I don't recall. Windgassen was the acceptable Siegfried, Martha Moedl the Brunnhilde, And as Reskin, Milankovic, Von Ilosvay, and Neidlinger were in the cast, it was a good "Ring". Keilberth conducted my cycle. Clemens Krauss the earlier one.

I met melomanes from England there, Dorothy Kershaw from the King's Road, Chelsea, a notable character whom I later visited in London. She was commutiing between Salzburg and Bayreuth, trying to stretch her sterling, of which she could take very little with her at that time Several English girls were staying at my pension and talked incessantly of the blanc mange Walhalla at Covent Garden and some favourite Wagnerian singer of theirs there. We silenced them only when we advanced Paul Robeson as best Wotan. The correspondent from "Billboard Magazine" was often of our party, and said over and over "Art is in a state of flux", which seemed safe enough. We called him Bill Board and ragged him, I'm afraid.

In those days the Prologue was given on Monday, followed by "Walkuere" and "Siegfried" Tuesday-Wednesday, on Thursday the Gods rested along with everyone else, but we all came back for the end of the world and "Goetterdaemmerung" on Friday. That Friday that was a tremendos Bayreuthian thunderstorm outside, and we emerged to see the moon navigating the still stormy sky, relieved that it didn't happen, the Earth was still here, it was but a dream of a saga.

Keilberth and Wieland Wagner quarreled furiously in my hearing, in their Bavarian Loden jackets and graven ivory deerheads. If by any chance someone glimpsed Hotter at the restaurants or in the small town, they would announce triumphantly, "I saw The God today!"
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