The Music Treasury for 28 December 2019 — Arturo Toscanini
The Music Treasury closes out 2019 honoring the great Italian conductor Arturo Toscanini. The show airs from 19:00 to 21:00 PST, hosted by Dr Gary Lemco. The following notes adapted from Britannica.
Arturo Toscanini, (born March 25, 1867, Parma, Italy—died Jan. 16, 1957, New York City, N.Y., U.S.), Italian conductor, considered one of the great virtuoso conductors of the first half of the 20th century.
Toscanini studied at the conservatories of Parma and Milan, intending to become a cellist. At the age of 19, when playing at the opera house at Rio de Janeiro, he was called upon to fill in for the conductor and performed Giuseppe Verdi’s Aida from memory. He came into prominence as a conductor in Italy and elsewhere and was appointed musical director of La Scala, Milan, in 1898, and of the Metropolitan Opera, New York City, in 1908. He conducted the New York Philharmonic-Symphony Orchestra from 1928 to 1936 and appeared with orchestras all over the world, except those of Italy and Germany during the Fascist regimes. From 1937 to 1954 he directed the NBC Symphony, an orchestra sponsored by the U.S. radio network.
Toscanini became principally known for his readings of the operas of Verdi and the symphonies of Beethoven, and he gave remarkable performances of the music of Wagner. His interpretations were notable for detail of phrasing, dynamic intensity, and an essentially classical conception of form. His phenomenal memory stood him in good stead when, suffering from poor eyesight, he was obliged always to conduct from memory. He commanded from the artists who worked under him a devotion that often made them reach something like his own fervor.
“The Music Treasury” chooses Maestro Toscanini to conclude our 2019 broadcasts, given the proximity to Beethoven’s own birthday (December 16) and for the importance of the 1936 Toscanini reading of the Beethoven 7th Symphony, among other distinguished recordings.
Beethoven: Coriolan Overture, Op. 62 6:34*
Beethoven: Quartet No. 11 in B-flat Major, Op. 130 – Cavatina 5:31*
Beethoven: Quartet No. 9 in C Major, Op. 59, No. 3 – Fugue 6:55*
Beethoven: Symphony No. 7 in A Major, Op. 92 (NY Philh, 1936) 35:00
Bellini: Norma: Introduction and Druids’ Chorus (2 December 1945) 10:39
Boito: Mefistofele: Prologue (w/N. Moscona 2 December 1945) 21:00
Berlioz: Romeo and Juliet Symphony: Convoi funebre de Juliette (2/16/47) 10:35
Verdi: Te Deum (2 December 1945) 15:16
*26 November 1944