Tag Archives: Hector Berlioz

HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Complete Songs With Orchestra Including “Les Nuits D’Ete” (Davis)

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Many thanks Trottar for this rarity

Now, really, the Berlioz-Davis-cycle is completed.
These works are unusual for different reasons. This is the only version of Nuits D’ete that I know that employs multiple soloists rather than one soprano or mezzo.
This is a wonderful peformance. Variety per se might not have worked with different soloists. But all four seem perfect to me. Sheila Armstrong had been a favorite singer since her “Let the Bright Seraphim ” near the end of Karl Richter’s “Samson”. She sings her two songs again with a bright clear soprano. Josephine Veasey sang much Berlioz including “Les Troyens” and captures the emotional depth of ‘Spectre”. I had not heard Frank Patterson before this recording, but he sings with a powerful and penetrating voice recalling the singer in “The Dead”, and John Shirley-Quirk is equally good, though his timbre might be an acquired taste-such as the one that hasn’t fully occurred for me in the case of Lelio. Its melange of spoken narrative soliloquy, tenor/piano Goethe lieder, baritone/male chorus Brigand’s aria et al contain (in my view)some quite
attractive music which dramatizes/animates thoughts/ideas of the narrator.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: John Shirley-Quirk, Sheila Armstrong, Frank Patterson, Josephine Veasey

Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Sir Colin Davis
Vinyl 1970
Number of Discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis: DR 13
Size: 1.17 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Cléopâtre/Herminie (Baker/Davis)

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All thanks for another pearl to the Berlioz-Davis-cycle go to Trottar

La Mort de Cléopâtre (The Death of Cleopatra) was Berlioz’s third attempt to win the Prix de Rome from the Academie des Beaux-Arts. His first attempt in 1827 was La Mort d’Orphée, which failed to place. His second attempt in 1828 was Herminie, which took second place. Berlioz called La Mort de Cléopâtre “a lyric scene” for soprano and orchestra, setting a text by P.A. Vieillard. The vocal writing is extremely dramatic, but it ignores distinctions between recitative and aria, which infuriated the jury. The orchestral writing is lush and full, with extraordinary harmonies that likewise alienated the jury. La Mort de Cléopâtre was judged such a failure in the eyes of the Academie that it gave no first place prize that year. The following year, Berlioz won the Prix de Rome with his conservative La Mort de Sardanapale, but, having already composed his wildly experimental and incredibly wild Symphonie fantastique, he found that he no longer cared all that much about the Academie.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer:
Janet Baker
Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl 1980
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 14
Size: 830 MB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Beatrice Et Benedict (Davis)

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All thanks for another pearl to complete the Berlioz-Davis-cycle go to Trottar

Dame Janet Baker and Robert Tear lead an outstanding cast in this classic recording of Berlioz’ operatic setting of Shakespeare’s ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, under the baton of the distinguished Berlioz conductor Sir Colin Davis. Based on Shakespeare’s ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, the text is by the composer who finished composing the opera in 1862; it was first given its première later that year in Baden-Baden.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer:
Thomas Allen, Robert Lloyd, Jules Bastin, John Alldis Choir, Helen Watts, Janet Baker, Christiane Eda-Pierre, Robert Tear, Richard Van Allan
Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl 1978
Number of discs: 2
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 15
Size: 2.0 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Te Deum (Davis)

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Thank you Trottar for the last pearl of the Berlioz cycle
Colin Davis’s Berlioz cycle for Philips was a highly acclaimed, if not ambitious achievement forty years ago and many of his performances- including the Te Deum here- remain the reference to which all others have since aspired. His soloists are all remarkably good (especially tenor Franco Tagliavini in the Te Deum) and the Wandsworth School Boys Choir simply sing their hearts out. Davis tends to downplay the usual theatrics most conductors pepper their readings with though his restraint pays off famously with one of the most highly dramatic, emotionally charged interpretations ever recorded.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: Franco Tagliavini, Wandsworth School Boys’ Choir, London Symphony Chorus
Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl 1969
Number of discs: 1
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 12
Size: 1.07 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – L’Enfance Du Christ (Davis)

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This is another fine pearl in this chain called “Davis-Berlioz-Cycle”.
Colin Davis, currently the grand old man of Berlioz conductors, has recorded the French romantic’s L’Enfance du Christ an amazing three times: first on L’oiseau-Lyre LPs (not issued on CD), then this one on Philips (frequently issued on LP and CD), and later on LSO Live (issued on CD with super audio surround sound capabilities). While not perhaps the most emotional Berlioz conducer in history, Davis’ more measured approach suits the more meditative L’Enfance. All three of his recordings are quite fine, but the sound quality gets slightly better with each newer edition. This sounds just splendid.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: Janet Baker, Eric Tappy, Raimund Herincx, Philip Langridge, Thomas Allen, Joseph Rouleau, Jules Bastin, John Alldis Choir
Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl 1977
Number of discs: 2
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 17
Size: 1.88 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/192 (Telarc) Hector Berlioz – Requiem (Shaw)

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As one would expect, Robert Shaw’s rendition of the Requiem is magnificently polished, with choral singing that is beyond compare. The drama is not quite as pronounced as with Davis and Munch, but the work’s majestic architecture stands clearly revealed. For once, Telarc’s thunderous, bass-heavy pickup adds something to the sonic picture. –Ted Libbey
Any one not familiar with Berlioz’ “Te Deum” should also give this careful consideration. I personally prefer the Te Deum over the Requiem and wonder why the two works are not equally known. This Shaw, although very very good, is (IHMO) slightly under the level of Davis, to call one, but technically is it one of the best (maybe THE best) among all releases of this underestimated masterwork. Friends of HiFi and owners of a very good equipment will find this absolutely amazing. Anyone who catches onto this neglected masterpiece should also investigate the Inbal (on Denon) and the Davis (on Philips).

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: Atlanta Symphony Chorus, John Alder
OrchestraAtlanta Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Robert Shaw
Vinyl 1985
Number of discs: 2
Format: Flac
Label: Telarc
DR-Analysis:
DR 14
Size: 3.17 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Requiem (Davis)

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Another precious pearl in this chain called “Davis-Berlioz-Cycle”.
Any one not familiar with Berlioz’ “Te Deum” should also give this careful consideration. I personally prefer the Te Deum over the Requiem and wonder why the two works are not equally known. This Davis is pretty much a standard version and not to be slighted. Reportedly, there is another Davis performance made for L.S.O. Live which may not yet have been released. Anyone who catches onto this neglected masterpiece should also investigate the Inbal (on Denon) and the Shaw (on Telarc).

Pay attention: due to an unexpected error on the file B1, I uploaded a corrected B1. DL it and replace the old one.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: Ronald Dowd, London Symphony Chorus, Wandsworth School Boys’ Choir
Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl 1970
Number of discs: 2
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 12
Size: 1.85 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Benvenuto Cellini (Davis)

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All thanks for this gem go to our friend Trottar
Sir Colin Davis is the reason for the way we look at the music of Hector Berlioz. He made the music come alive. I own – with the precious contribution by two donators from this blog –  the complete cycle of Davis recordings. It wonderful to hear this opera performed as Berlioz would have wanted in 1834. My eyes were opened to the beauty of this forgotten stage work. A MUST for a lover of Hector Berlioz. His operas were pushed aside in the 19th century only to flower in the 20th century. His name has been re-stored in the world in the Opera. A true equal to Verdi, Wagner, Strauss plus the other greats. A truly gifted artist. Berlioz was a rare genius, generally unappreciated in his own day, but now fully recovered. The late Colin Davis has much to do with that, and this wonderful recording was an important part of that rebirth. Especially the fabulous multi-lingual tenor, Nicolai Gedda, offers here a clinic on superb French style and diction, not to mention unsurpassed beauty of shading and tone. The entire cast I judge to be excellent, the story fun and filled with vocal frolic, the orchestra unbeatable.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: Nicolai Gedda, Hugues Cuénod, Derek Blackwell, Christiane Eda-Pierre, Janine Reiss, Jane Berbié, Jules Bastin
Orchestra: B.B.C. Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl 1972
Number of discs: 4
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 14
Size: 3:12 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – Les Troyens (Davis)

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All thanks for this gem go to our friend from Chicago
This was the first complete (and now there is an even MORE complete Davis recording) set of this wonderful opera. Before Beecham and Davis recorded it, this opera had to undergo a very large-scale demystification process. The myths surrounding this opera were bigger than the opera itself, and nowhere half as noble. Rumor had it that the opera was “impossible”. It is not impossible, and it is certainly not as difficult to stage as any of the Wagner operas. But Berlioz had few real champions, while Wagner had legions. So the “impossible” was really a prejudice, and it took conductors like Beecham, Munch, and Davis to bring Berlioz back from the crypt of obscurity. And what we rediscovered was a titan of music.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performer: Josephine Veasey, Jon Vickers, Berit Lindholm
Orchestra: Orchestra Of The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl 1970
Number of discs: 5
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis:
DR 14
Size: 4.86 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FF

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HD-Vinyl 24/96 (Philips) Hector Berlioz – La Damnation De Faust (Veasey/Gedda/Davis)

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Many thanks to our friend Trottar for Nicolai Gedda, who died January 8th 2017

This recording is part of the historic Colin Davis Berlioz cycle made for Philips in the 1970s. La Damnation de Faust is not an opera; it is not meant for the stage. It is a concert work, not a theatrical piece. It can be adapted for the stage, of course, and has been very successfully many times. The male singers in this recording are hard to beat. Gedda in particular gives one of his best performances on record.

Composer: Hector Berlioz
Performers: Josephine Veasey, Richard Van Allan, Nicolai Gedda, Jules Bastin
Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Colin Davis
Vinyl (1973)
Number of Discs: 3
Format: Flac
Label: Philips
DR-Analysis: 16
Size: 2.53 GB
Scan: yes
Server: FileFactory

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