Leopold Stokowski conducts Recordings from 1954 & 1973
Includes previously unreleased material.
Everything here, except the Tchaikovsky Symphony, comes from a single concert given in a studio on 5 May 1954 in which the BBC Symphony Orchestra was conducted by Leopold Stokowski. The recording in this disc derives from the Richard Itter Broadcast Collection, and it’s the first I’ve come across not to reside on Lyrita, though of course Cameo Classics is a wholly owned label of the Lyrita Recorded Trust Edition. Perhaps the somewhat dichotomous nature of the material – the Tchaikovsky was first issued on LP in 1979 subsequently on CD - means its natural home is on this imprint.
Whilst I’d give what few back teeth I have left to hear Stokowski conduct Rubbra’s Fifth Symphony – which he did two years earlier with the BBC at the Maida Vale studios – it’s a real surprise and delight to find him conducting Malcolm Arnold. He’d asked the BBC for suitable scores of young British composers whilst also proposing he play either Bax’s Sixth Symphony (add that to the wish list above) or Tintagel, VW’s Variants on Dives and Lazarus, as well as standard symphonic fare. Of these three Tintagel and Dives were played at the second of the two studio concerts Stokowski gave. He also conducted Rawsthorne’s Symphonic Studies and other beguiling things.
Jonathan Woolf, MusicWeb