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Pierre Monteux - The Complete Rca Album Collection Box set

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Product details

  • Performer: Pierre Monteux
  • Audio CD (1 Dec. 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 40
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Sony Music Classical
  • ASIN: B00MAPMAFQ
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 140,561 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Ravel: La valse
  2. Rimsky - Korsakov: Le coq d'or
  3. Indy: Symphonie sur un chant montagnard francais (Symphonie cévenole), Op. 25
  4. Franck: Symphony in D Minor (1941)

Disc: 2

  1. Franck: Pièce héroique
  2. Debussy: Images pour orchestre No. 1, Gigues (1942)
  3. Debussy: Images pour orchestre No. 3, Rondes de printemps (1942)
  4. Indy: Symphony No. 2, Op. 57
  5. Rimsky - Korsakov: Tsar Sultan
  6. Lalo: Le roi d'Ys - Overture

Disc: 3

  1. Lalo: Symphonie espagnole, Op. 21
  2. Bruch: Concerto No. 1 for Violin and Orchestra in G Minor, Op. 26

Disc: 4

  1. Berlioz: Benvenuto Cellini - Overture (1945)
  2. Berlioz: Les troyens: Act II - Overture
  3. Indy: Istar: Symphonic Variations, Op. 42
  4. Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique (1945)

Disc: 5

  1. Indy: Fervaal Prelude, Op. 40
  2. Rimsky - Korsakov: Sadko, Op. 5
  3. Brahms: Alto Rhapsody, Op. 53 (Nach "Harzreise im Winter") (1945)
  4. Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring (1945)

Disc: 6

  1. Brahms: Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 73 (1945)
  2. Rimsky - Korsakov: Le coq d'or - Introduction and Cortège Des Noces (1945)
  3. Milhaud: Symphonic Suite No. 2 "Protée"
  4. Chausson: Poème, Op. 25
  5. Grünberg: Violin Concerto, Op. 47

Disc: 7

  1. Milhaud: Symphonic Suite No. 2, Op. 57 "Protée"
  2. Chausson: Poème, Op. 25
  3. Gruenberg: Violin Concerto, Op. 47

Disc: 8

  1. Ibert: Escales
  2. Rimsky - Korsakov: Symphony No. 2 "Antar", Op. 9
  3. Ravel: Valses nobles et sentimentales
  4. Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé: Suite No. 1
  5. Debussy: Sarabande

Disc: 9

  1. Strauss: Ein Heldenleben, Op. 40
  2. Chabrier: Le roi malgré lui: Fete - polonaise

Disc: 10

  1. Scriabin: Symphony No. 4, op. 54 "Le poème de l'extase" (1947)
  2. Gounod: Faust: Ballet Music
  3. Mendelssohn: Ruy Blas, Op. 95 - Overture
  4. Ravel: Alborado del gracioso
  5. Berlioz: Benvenuto Cellini - Overture (1947)
  6. Berlioz: La damnation de Faust - Rákóczy March

Disc: 11

  1. Rimsky - Korsakov: Scheherazade: Symphonic Suite, Op. 35

Disc: 12

  1. Beethoven: Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 36

Disc: 13

  1. Franck: Symphony in D Minor (1950)

Disc: 14

  1. Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique (1951)

Disc: 15

  1. Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring (1913/21 version) (1951)

Disc: 16

  1. Brahms: Symphony No. 2, Op. 73 in D (1951)

Disc: 17

  1. Chausson: Symphony, Op. 20 in B flat

Disc: 18

  1. Brahms: Alto Rhapsody, Op. 53 (Nach "Harzreise im Winter") (1950)
  2. Mahler: Kindertotenlieder

Disc: 19

  1. Debussy: Images pour orchestrstre No. 3, Gigues (1951)
  2. Debussy: Ibéria

Disc: 20

  1. Brahms: Song of Destiny, Op. 54 (Schicksalslied)
  2. Bach: Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor
  3. Bach: Christmas Oratorio - Sinfonia
  4. Beethoven: Die Ruinen von Athen, Op. 113

Disc: 21

  1. Beethoven: Symphony No. 4, Op. 60 in B - Flat
  2. Schumann: Symphony No. 4 in D minor, op. 120

Disc: 22

  1. Scriabin: Symphony No. 4, op. 54 "Le poème de l'extase" (1952)
  2. Liszt: Les préludes (Symphonic Poem No. 3)

Disc: 23

  1. Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 12 in A, K.414
  2. Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 18 in B - Flat, K.456

Disc: 24

  1. Chausson: Poème de l'amour et de la mer
  2. Various: French Songs

Disc: 25

  1. Beethoven: Symphony No. 8, Op. 93 in F
  2. Berlioz: Benvenuto Cellini - Overture (1952)

Disc: 26

  1. Delibes: Sylvia: Suite
  2. Delibes: Coppélia: Suite
  3. Delibes: Coppélia: Prélude, Mazurka (Stereo Version)

Disc: 27

  1. Debussy: La mer
  2. Debussy: Nocturnes
  3. Debussy: La mer: De l'aube à midi (Stereo Version)

Disc: 28

  1. Verdi: La traviata

Disc: 29

  1. Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 6, Op. 74 "Pathétique" in B Minor

Disc: 30

  1. Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5, Op. 64 in E Minor

Disc: 31

  1. Saint - Saens: Havanaise, Op. 83

Disc: 32

  1. Brahms: Concerto for violin in D, Op. 77

Disc: 33

  1. Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4, Op. 36 in F Minor

Disc: 34

  1. Stravinsky: Pétrouchka

Disc: 35

  1. Gluck: Orfeo and Euridice

Disc: 36

  1. Strauss: Tod und Verklärung, Op. 24
  2. Wagner: Siegfried Idyll

Disc: 37

  1. Franck: Symphony in D Minor (1961)

Disc: 38

  1. Bonus: Interview

Product description

Product Description

Sony Classical is proud to announce an unparalleled reissue of Pierre Monteux’s RCA Victor recordings. They are being issued together for the first time in a single original jacket collection of 40 CDs.

Each and every recording in this new 40-CD set comes from the best source, including previous Living Stereo, SACD and XRCD reissues. Many others have been newly remastered from the original 78-rpm matrices or tapes.

Most of Monteux’s now legendary recordings for RCA were made between 1941 and 1961 with the two US orchestras he served as music director: the Boston Symphony (1919-24) and San Francisco Symphony (1936-52). Naturally they contain music he had introduced to the world decades earlier, for example Stravinsky’s Rite (recorded in Boston on 78s in 1945 and on LP in 1951) and Petrushka (recorded in Boston, 1959) as well as Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales and Daphnis et Chloé. His RCA French discography also contains multiple recordings of Debussy’s Images, La Mer and Nocturnes, Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique and works by Chausson and d’Indy. And then there is his peerless interpretation of the Franck D minor. Monteux recorded that symphony in San Francisco in 1941 and 1950, then once again with the Chicago Symphony in 1961. Those were his last RCA sessions, and the recording it yielded is still universally regarded as the work’s finest ever.

He was far more than a French specialist, however, and his performances of the German and Russian repertoires were every bit as authoritative. Esteemed for his way with the Beethoven symphonies (2, 4 and 8 are included here from San Francisco), Monteux was a superb interpreter of Brahms, one of whose quartets he played in as a young violist with the composer in attendance. Brahms remarked afterwards: “It takes the French to play my music properly. The Germans all play it much too heavily.” Monteux made no fewer than five celebrated recordings of the Second Symphony – his favourite. Two from San Francisco (1945 and 1951) are included here, as is an unsurpassed (though too often previously unavailable) 1959 recording of Brahms’s Violin Concerto with Henryk Szeryng and the London Symphony Orchestra, not to mention an unforgettable 1945 San Francisco performance of the Alto Rhapsody featuring the great American contralto Marian Anderson. Of the Russians, Monteux recorded major works by Rimsky-Korsakov and Scriabin for RCA with both the San Francisco and Boston orchestras in the 1940s and 50s. In the late 1950s, at the helm of the Boston Symphony, he also made classic recordings of the last three Tchaikovsky symphonies and the Khachaturian Violin Concerto with soloist Leonid Kogan.

Finally there is Monteux in opera, which he loved and would have conducted more extensively but for his dislike of the atmosphere of the opera house, where, he complained, “too often music is the least of many considerations”. Luckily, in the mid-1950s, RCA’s team went to the Rome Opera to record him conducting complete studio performances of Gluck’s Orfeo and Verdi’s Traviata.

Newly remastered from the original analogue discs and tapes in this edition:

Rimsky-Korsakov: Le Coq d’or: Cortège de noces (1941)
Franck: Symphony in D minor (1941)
Debussy: Images pour orchestre: Gigues & Rondes de printemps (1942)
Rimsky-Korsakov: The Tale of Tsar Saltan: March (1942)
Bruch: Violin Concerto No. 1 with Yehudi Menuhin (1945)
Berlioz: Grande Ouverture de Benvenuto Cellini (1945 & 1947)
Stravinsky: Le Sacre du printemps (1945)
Rimsky-Korsakov: Le Coq d’or: Introduction and Cortège de noces (1945)
Milhaud: Suite symphonique No 2 (1945)
Scriabin: Le Poème de l’extase (1947)
Mendelssohn: Ruy Blas Overture (1947)
Beethoven: Symphony No. 2 (1949)
J. S. Bach: Weihnachtsoratorium: No. 10 Sinfonia (1949)
Brahms: Alto Rhapsody with Marian Anderson (1950)
Chausson: Poème de l’amour et de la mer (1952)
Various: French Songs with Gladys Swarthout (1952/53)
Verdi: La traviata with Rosanna Carteri & Cesare Valletti (1956)
Wagner: Siegfried Idyll (1960)

Set contents:

DISC 1:
Ravel: La valse
Rimsky-Korsakov: Le coq d'or - Cortège Des Noces (1941)
Indy: Symphonie sur un chant montagnard francais (Symphonie cévenole), Op. 25
Franck: Symphony in D Minor (1941)

DISC 2:
Franck: Pièce héroique
Debussy: Images pour orchestre No. 1, Gigues (1942)
Debussy: Images pour orchestre No. 3, Rondes de printemps (1942)
Indy: Symphony No. 2, Op. 57
Rimsky-Korsakov: Tsar Sultan - March
Lalo: Le roi d'Ys – Overture

DISC 3:
Lalo: Symphonie espagnole, Op. 21
Bruch: Concerto No. 1 for Violin and Orchestra in G Minor, Op. 26

DISC 4:
Berlioz: Benvenuto Cellini – Overture (1945)
Berlioz: Les troyens: Act II - Overture
Indy: Istar: Symphonic Variations, Op. 42
Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique (1945)

DISC 5:
Indy: Fervaal Prelude, Op. 40
Rimsky-Korsakov: Sadko, Op. 5
Brahms: Alto Rhapsody, Op. 53 (Nach "Harzreise im Winter") (1945)
Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring (1945)

DISC 6:
Brahms: Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 73 (1945)
Rimsky-Korsakov: Le coq d'or – Introduction and Cortège Des Noces (1945)
Milhaud: Symphonic Suite No. 2 "Protée"
Chausson: Poème, Op. 25
Grünberg: Violin Concerto, Op. 47

DISC 7:
Milhaud: Symphonic Suite No. 2, Op. 57 "Protée"
Chausson: Poème, Op. 25
Gruenberg: Violin Concerto, Op. 47

DISC 8:
Ibert: Escales
Rimsky-Korsakov: Symphony No. 2 "Antar", Op. 9
Ravel: Valses nobles et sentimentales
Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé: Suite No. 1
Debussy: Sarabande

DISC 9:
Strauss: Ein Heldenleben, Op. 40
Chabrier: Le roi malgré lui: Fete-polonaise

DISC 10:
Scriabin: Symphony No. 4, op. 54 “Le poème de l'extase” (1947)
Gounod: Faust: Ballet Music
Mendelssohn: Ruy Blas, Op. 95 – Overture
Ravel: Alborado del gracioso
Berlioz: Benvenuto Cellini - Overture (1947)
Berlioz: La damnation de Faust - Rákóczy March

DISC 11:
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade: Symphonic Suite, Op. 35

DISC 12:
Beethoven: Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 36

DISC 13:
Franck: Symphony in D Minor (1950)

DISC 14:
Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique (1951)

DISC 15:
Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring (1913/21 version) (1951)

DISC 16:
Brahms: Symphony No. 2, Op. 73 in D (1951)

DISC 17:
Chausson: Symphony, Op. 20 in B flat

DISC 18:
Brahms: Alto Rhapsody, Op. 53 (Nach "Harzreise im Winter") (1950)
Mahler: Kindertotenlieder

DISC 19:
Debussy: Images pour orchestrstre No. 3, Gigues (1951)
Debussy: Ibéria

DISC 20:
Brahms: Song of Destiny, Op. 54 (Schicksalslied)
Bach: Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor
Bach: Christmas Oratorio - Sinfonia
Beethoven: Die Ruinen von Athen, Op. 113

DISC 21:
Beethoven: Symphony No. 4, Op. 60 in B-Flat
Schumann: Symphony No. 4 in D minor, op. 120

DISC 22:
Scriabin: Symphony No. 4, op. 54 "Le poème de l'extase" (1952)
Liszt: Les préludes (Symphonic Poem No. 3)

DISC 23:
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 12 in A, K.414
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 18 in B-Flat, K.456

DISC 24:
Chausson: Poème de l'amour et de la mer
Various: French Songs

DISC 25:
Beethoven: Symphony No. 8, Op. 93 in F
Berlioz: Benvenuto Cellini - Overture (1952)

DISC 26:
Delibes: Sylvia: Suite
Delibes: Coppélia: Suite
Delibes: Coppélia: Prélude, Mazurka (Stereo Version)

DISC 27:
Debussy: La mer
Debussy: Nocturnes
Debussy: La mer: De l’aube à midi (Stereo Version)

DISC 28-29:
Verdi: La traviata

DISC 30:
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 6, Op. 74 "Pathétique" in B Minor

DISC 31:
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5, Op. 64 in E Minor

DISC 32:
Khatchaturian: Violin Concerto
Saint-Saens: Havanaise, Op. 83

DISC 33:
Brahms: Concerto for violin in D, Op. 77

DISC 34:
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4, Op. 36 in F Minor

DISC 35:
Stravinsky: Pétrouchka

DISC 36-37:
Gluck: Orfeo and Euridice

DISC 38:
Strauss: Tod und Verklärung, Op. 24
Wagner: Siegfried Idyll

DISC 39:
Franck: Symphony in D Minor (1961)

DISC 40:
Bonus: Interview

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
My introduction to Monteux as a teenager, was via his Beethoven 9th with the LSO and then I was hooked by his conducting, as I was by Furtwangler. Both conductors were beloved by their orchestras, so then this review is a labour of love for a man I admire greatly. (REVIEWS BELOW)

Another RCA Sony classics box set made of tough cardboard. A small box that you can grip with one hand. Plum red in colour, one side has pictures of CD sleeves and underneath the music that has been remastered from the original Analogue discs and tapes, from 1941-1960. The lid covers nearly the entire box, for there is a tray in which the second box sits. The sleeves are the originals, except CD 1-10 which are the colour of the 78 covers, with the red disc label in the middle. From CD 11 onwards the original sleeves with details of the music, with small writing on the back about the music, or composer. The spines of the sleeves have the composer, music, orchestra and CD number. On the CD disc which looks like a LP, there is a label, either plum red, or light plum which means it is stereo, or red which indicates it is Living stereo.

Now to the tricky bit, sound. For 18 works have been newly remastered from the original analogue discs and tapes using 24-bit/96 kHz technology. Thus, the sound for 1941 onwards is excellent. Next to the reviews where this has happened I shall place remastered, so you know. However, there are six CDs with Living Stereo on the front of the sleeve and they have been remastered. What about the others? I am assured by the booklet that b-sharp remastered them. The Booklet is hard covered with many pictures of Monteux, a essay 'Monteux remembered' by John Canarina. Although if you buy the box, listen to the bonus disc first, with Monteux speaking to a interviewer for 30 minutes.
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Format: Audio CD
----------- PROBLEM DISCOVERED ----------------------------
65 Days after posting this review, I discovered a serious problem with the Monteux box.
Not fatal, but not good.
Three of the four D'Indy compositions are transferred at the wrong speed and are pitched flat (only the Istar Variations on CD 4 in the new box is pitched correctly).

The problem dates back to the 1994 Monteux Edition on RCA.
Volume 9 had three works of D'Indy.
The original 1994 pressing (1994a) was mastered at the wrong speed (matrix number on the inner ring of the disc = 3/94).
RCA detected the problem and issued a corrected version (1994b) (matrix number on the inner ring = 10/94).
Sony has both matrixes in their vault, and unfortunately chose the wrong one for the 2014 box.
These works are spread among three discs in the new collection.

CD 1 has Symphony on a French Mountain Air:
1994a (in 2014 box) = 25:01 (11:07, 6:17, 7:37) pitched flat - My stopwatch timings
1994b (corrected) === 23:39 (10:30, 5:56, 7:13) correct pitch

CD2 has Symphony 2:
1994a (in 2014 box) = 42:12 (11:45, 11:36, 5:16, 13:35) pitched flat
1994b (corrected) === 40:44 (11:07, 10:57, 4:59, 12:51) correct pitch (B flat)

CD 5 has the Fervaal Prelude:
1994a (in 2014 box) = 5:00 pitched flat
1994b (corrected) === 4:43 correct pitch

Sony has no plans to remaster CDs 1, 2 and 5.
Still a five star box, but this is extremely frustrating:

" When creating this set, we were obviously not aware that our predecessors at BMG/RCA released CD No. 09026618882 in two differently pitched versions.
The current Pierre Monteux edition apparently uses the lower pitched European version of Vol. 9, no.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is a luxuriously produced set. It looks and feels substantial as well as having musical riches. I decided to run through it chronologically so I have only just reached the first of the operas included - even so the standard of sound is superb. The very first recording of Ravel's La valse has sound, from 1941, which is full and detailed. The quality of RCA's Living Stereo recordings is well known. Another of the fine early recordings is the Beethoven Fourth Symphony which has coruscating energy and fun. Presumably you buy this album because it is Pierre Monteux - you will not be disappointed here. The interpretations have individuality, but not personal wilfulness, they always strive to be at the service of the music. Having said that Monteux is a conductor who happened to be French, an all-rounder rather than a French specialist, the Debussy recordings are fantastic - his La mer has such energy and sparkle.
Minus points - the original jacket shibboleth leads to some very short CDs - though many of the earlier recordings first issued without particular covers are well packed. Also you will need a magnifying glass to read the sleeve notes, which themselves have their own antique flavour.
This is a superb set which has already given me many hours of musical enjoyment - and I have only reached CD 27.
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