Monday, November 19, 2007

Schoenberg and Wiener Espressivo


Hello -- You wrote a nice review in August of the Radio Symphony Orchestra Frankfurt (now called the HR Symphonie Orchester [HR = Hessischer Rundfunk]) recording of Schoenberg's Gurrelieder in the Alte Oper, Frankfurt (above).

As it happens, Detlev Kittler, the engineer for the recording lives at the other end of our five-house row here in Frankfurt Praunheim. He's 75 now, and long retired from HR, but was delighted to receive a copy of your article. He also volunteered that he had previously recorded the RSO Frankfurt in the Gurrelieder under Erich Leinsdorf. It's a concert recording, not a studio recording, but Hr. Kittler said that he preferred the recording by "the Austrian". (I can imagine that Leinsdorf captures the Wiener Espressivo elements well.)

He has promised to share a copy of that recording with me, and I"ll let you know about it, if you're interested. Perhaps HR could be persuaded to re-release it in some format?

Best regards,
Daniel Wolf Frankfurt


I notice that among many fine recordings, Detlev Kittler engineered one close to Daniel's heart -Ensemble Modern's 1991 sessions for Morton Feldman's For Samuel Beckett. And more on recordings of Schoenberg and the Second Viennese School here.
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1 comment:

Pliable said...

Email received

Dear Bob,

Thanks for the mention and the link.

I've now heard the other recording, it was done live on October 18, 1974 in the HR Sendesaal with Gene Fergusen (Waldemar), Marita Napier (Tove), Rose Wagemann (Waldtaube), Robert Tear (Klaus Narr), Sigmund Nimsgern (Bauer) and Uwe Friedrichsen (sprecher). Leinsdorf is stylistically secure and the singers are, on the whole, better than in the later recording. Unfortunately, the are some artifacts in the recording that would make it unsuitable for release.

Best regards,

djw