Thursday, October 7, 2010

Dr. Bruno Walter and Mozart - Greatness Incarnate...

I recently came across an old album I had totally forgotten about, which I had purchased during my early years. It was released with the title " Mozart - the Final Six Symphonies."
In transferring it over to CD, I listened to the performances, all done by the legendary conductor Bruno Walter, who, fortunately for us, turned much of his attention to Mozart during his final years, after a lifetime of defining performances, especially of Gustav Mahler, with whom he had a strong relationship.
With the plethora of recordings of the Mozart symphonies, I was reminded, while listening to Walter, as to the essence of elegance and plasticity that Walter gave to the readings of these final symphonies of the great Austrian. Quite frankly, I must state that the connective tissue formed between conductor and composer is the kind of experience that puts Mozart's limitless luminescence into a focus I cannot remember having known before, considering all of the performances I have heard of these works throughout my experience.
It is most fortunate for the world of music that a young Bruno Walter, during the 1920's, before Hitler came to power, took the tyrant's tirades and warnings about Jewish musicians in Germany seriously, and rather soon after left Germany.
One of the high points in the recordings for me was the way Walter produced the 'fiddling' aspect in the final movement of the "E" flat symphony, truly reminiscent of blue grass fiddling in America, and therefore, innately or otherwise, forming a solid parallel between the two cultures in the folk phase of music making.
Hope that you can get this recording.

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