Rafael Kubelik Archive

LISZT: Symphonic Poems – Herbert Von Karajan/ Ferenc Fricsay / Stanislav Macura / Rafael Kubelik – Praga Digitals 

LISZT: Symphonic Poems – Herbert Von Karajan/ Ferenc Fricsay / Stanislav Macura / Rafael Kubelik – Praga Digitals 

LISZT: Symphonic Poems = Les Preludes; Tasso: Lamento e Trionfo; Mazeppa; Die Ideale – RIAS Symphony Orchestra, Berlin/ Ferenc Fricsay/ Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra/ Stanislav Macura/ Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra/ Herbert von Karajan/ Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra/ Rafael Kubelik – Praga Digitals SACD PRD 350 124, 79:59 (7/7/17) [Distr. Harmonia mundi/PIAS] ****: Four Liszt symphonic poems receive masterful treatment in sonically stirring restoraton. At least two of these four performances of Liszt symphonic poems have consistently granted me extreme musical satisfaction and an airing on my radio program, “The Music Treasury”: the September 1956 reading of the 1854 Les Preludes by Ferenc Fricsay (1914-1963), and the September 1960 performance of Mazeppa by Herbert von Karajan (1908-1989). The Fricsay Les Preludes (after Lamartine) testifies to the Hungarian maestro’s astonishing, fluid rhythmic flexibility. After the fateful fanfares in the trombones, the RIAS strings exhibit a grand, operatic line suggestive of “the wounded human soul’s endeavor to find solace in Nature.” The sectional, periodic structure of the piece flows seamlessly in quasi sonata-form, only to return to its heroic brass invocation, aided by the tuba. The Symphonic Poem No. 6 Mazeppa (1851) derives from a poem by Victor Hugo devoted to Lithuanian folk hero […]

BRAHMS: Piano Concerto No. 1; Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Handel – Claudio Arrau, p./ Bavarian Radio-Sym. Orch. /Rafael Kubelik – Praga Digitals

BRAHMS: Piano Concerto No. 1; Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Handel – Claudio Arrau, p./ Bavarian Radio-Sym. Orch. /Rafael Kubelik – Praga Digitals

Claudio Arrau realizes Brahms in the grand manner, both in recital and with a spirited Bavarian ensemble.  Claudio Arrau plays JOHANNES BRAHMS: Piano Concerto No. 1 in d minor, Op. 15; Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Handel, Op. 24 – Claudio Arrau, p./ Bavarian Radio-Sym. Orch. /Rafael Kubelik – Praga Digitals PRD/DSD 350 068, 79:27 [Distr. by Harmonia mundi] ****:  A sturdy combination of technical prowess and intellectual erudition marked the long career of Chilean virtuoso Claudio Arrau (1903-1991). Arrau’s often massive chordal approach made him a “German” performer par excellence, courtesy of his one teacher, Martin Krause.  Although Arrau and Vladimir Horowitz had been exact contemporaries, Arrau favored a personal and aesthetic distance from his public, preferring to preserve his individual space and vision without concessions to the public or to record company management. By the end of his career, he dropped encores from his response to audience adulation – you paid your money, and Arrau delivered his stated program. When I complimented him (in Atlanta) on his 1951 inscription of the Schumann Concerto with Victor de Sabata, Arrau remarked, “That was a long time ago.” The Brahms 1861 Handel Variations remained a staple of the Arrau […]