Notes & Reviews:
"Wow!" a galvanized Igor Stravinsky reportedly exclaimed after listening to Leonard Bernstein's astonishing recording with the New York Philharmonic of Le Sacre du Printemps (The Rite of Spring), a performance that was captured more than a half-century ago in a single electrically-charged recording session. Fifty-five years later, this legendary album still sounds as galvanizing\ and revolutionary as Le Sacre du Printemps itself, a work that Bernstein characterized as "only one of your everyday volcanic masterpieces... a miraculous new creation of such originality and power that still today it shocks and overwhelms us." It was exactly a century ago that Le Sacre du Printemps shocked and overwhelmed its first audience, provoking a now legendary riot at its Paris premiere whose notoriety and magnitude was unprecedented in the history of classical music. The opening night audience included, among the ladies, gentlemen and diplomats, such luminaries as Pablo Picasso, Marcel Proust, Gertrude Stein, Maurice Ravel and Claude Debussy. This reissue of Bernstein's 1958 recording of Le Sacre du Printemps is a brand new audio transfer from the original analogue reels and is also available on 180-gram audiophile quality vinyl. It also includes the original cover art of the now-iconic image by Gray Foy that would turn out to be the quintessential visual equivalent to Stravinsky's music. In addition, the package has photos of Bernstein and Stravinsky plus images from the New York Philharmonic recording sessions and an essay by Jonathan Cott, writer and editor for Rolling Stone magazine.
American Record Guide, September/October 2013
What was a surprise was a new remastering of Leonard Bernstein's first recording of the Rite, which has been a classic since it appeared in 1958. Known as the "the wild one", it earned a fitting "Wow" from the composer at the end of the recording session. The sound was considered impressive in its day. The Bernstein made the Recommended list. The Bernstein is a must.
Recording information: St. George Hotel, Brooklyn, New York (01/20/1958).
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Works DetailsStravinsky, Igor : Le Sacre du printemps (The Rite of Spring), ballet in 2 parts for piano, 4 hands
- Conductor: Leonard Bernstein
- Ensemble: New York Philharmonic
- Running Time: 32 min. 34 sec.
- Period Time: Modern
- Written: 1912