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 Posted:   Jun 30, 2013 - 6:52 AM   
 By:   TominAtl   (Member)

In America next Thursday July 4th we in America will be celebrating our Independence Day. Not knowing full why but Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture" has become synonymous with the celebration as many orchestra's will play it as the final piece, particularly the finale with the cannons going off.

As a kid growing up my dad use to play the "1812 Overture" on his huge console stereo system and it would thunder throughout the house. The recording to this day remains my all time favorite. It's by Eugene Ormandy w/ the Philadelphia Orchestra, Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and the Valley Forge Military Academy Band, complete with cannons and bells, recorded in 1972. Sadly that recording does not exist on CD but LP only.

So my question as to those who do love this work, which recording stands as your favorite, or played by which orchestra?

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 30, 2013 - 9:17 AM   
 By:   Octoberman   (Member)

This is an easy pick for me. My favorite version is by the Orchestre Symphonique du Montreal under Charles Dutoit. 1985 or 1986, I think. I adore that orchestra. World class, for my money.

They really cut loose and have fun with it. They even stuck in some subsonic synth tones at the end just to give your system a good workout.

smile

 
 Posted:   Jun 30, 2013 - 9:25 AM   
 By:   Stefan Huber   (Member)

Of the ones I've heard thus far, the Antal Dorati version with the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra is my favorite. The sonics are just spectacular.

The Reiner version on Living Stereo, unfortunately, has no canons. Then there's the infamous Telarc recording with Erich Kunzel which is said to have killed quite a few styluses during the LP era...

 
 Posted:   Jun 30, 2013 - 11:46 AM   
 By:   Mr Greg   (Member)

Then there's the infamous Telarc recording with Erich Kunzel which is said to have killed quite a few styluses during the LP era...

Haha - I haven't heard of that before, but the CD certainly does test the systems!

I bought a cheapy 2-CD set a while back mainly for the Symphony Number 6, but to my delight it has the most amazing version of 1812 on there too (one of my favourite pieces to play as a trumpeter too, I might add)...Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Regimental Band of the Royal Artillery, conducted by Jacek Kaspszyk. Can't find it on Amazon or would link to it...absolute belter of a recording from the word "Go".


This is an easy pick for me. My favorite version is by the Orchestre Symphonique du Montreal under Charles Dutoit. 1985 or 1986, I think. I adore that orchestra. World class, for my money.

Out of interest, can you post a link to the CD?

EDIT - no worries, found it...damn - 1p - can I afford this???? Love the 2nd hand market wink

 
 
 Posted:   Jun 30, 2013 - 11:52 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

The first version I ever got was on the budget LP label Design Records, played by the Italian Festival Symphony Orchestra. Subsequently, I acquired the 1971 Eugene Ormandy version with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Philadelphia Brass Bands, and the Temple University Choirs. I later replaced that LP with its 1990 RCA CD counterpart. That CD also includes Tchaikovsky's "Capriccio Italien," "Marche Slave," and "Francesca da Rimini."

 
 Posted:   Jun 30, 2013 - 1:04 PM   
 By:   Hadrian   (Member)

Sadly that recording does not exist on CD but LP only.

But it does exist on CD:

http://www.amazon.com/Tchaikovsky-Symphony-Overture-Marche-Slave/dp/B000069JL5/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1372622335&sr=8-1&keywords=tchaikovsky+ormandy+1812+mormon

and you're right, it is an amazing performance with the choir adding a new dimension to the work.

 
 Posted:   Jun 30, 2013 - 8:57 PM   
 By:   Recordman   (Member)





Back when "stereo" was relatively new, not only did the cannon shells go from left to right, but everyone in the US was issued a free copy of this and most of these LPs now rest in honored glory in the flea markets of our country.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 1, 2013 - 4:27 AM   
 By:   Doug Raynes   (Member)

Of the ones I've heard thus far, the Antal Dorati version with the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra is my favorite. The sonics are just spectacular.


That's my favourite as well.

Then there's the infamous Telarc recording with Erich Kunzel which is said to have killed quite a few styluses during the LP era...


When I first got the Kunzel Telarc LP it played perfectly on my cheap record player but when I upgraded the record player to something more expensive it refused to play!

 
 Posted:   Jul 1, 2013 - 7:57 AM   
 By:   TominAtl   (Member)

Sadly that recording does not exist on CD but LP only.

But it does exist on CD:

http://www.amazon.com/Tchaikovsky-Symphony-Overture-Marche-Slave/dp/B000069JL5/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1372622335&sr=8-1&keywords=tchaikovsky+ormandy+1812+mormon

and you're right, it is an amazing performance with the choir adding a new dimension to the work.


Excellent!! Thank you so much for the heads up!!!! Buying it now! Mucho appreciation!!

 
 Posted:   Jul 1, 2013 - 1:01 PM   
 By:   jackfu   (Member)

Then there's the infamous Telarc recording with Erich Kunzel which is said to have killed quite a few styluses during the LP era...

Thanks for the reminder! I purchased that LP about the same time as my AR-9’s (1979) and it is still my favorite. It only caused problems once during the cannon volleys, when my turntable was too close to the speakers. I seem to recall that it received some criticism as being a “demo” to show off Telarc’s recording techniques (or maybe that was Robert Shaw and the ASO recording of Stravinski's "Firebird Suite" for Telarc), but to me it sounds the most “balanced” on the whole. Some versions I’ve heard seemed to have rushed the ending, where others seemed to plod along. I have to say I thought the Antal Dorati version timed the cannons better.

 
 Posted:   Jul 1, 2013 - 2:17 PM   
 By:   Gary S.   (Member)

My personal favorites is by Dorati, but is with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

 
 Posted:   Jul 1, 2013 - 6:25 PM   
 By:   Hadrian   (Member)



Excellent!! Thank you so much for the heads up!!!! Buying it now! Mucho appreciation!!


You're very welcome smile

As for my personal favorite recordings of 1812, I'd say the Ormandy because of the beautiful choir opening and Andre Previn's London Symphony recording:

http://www.amazon.com/Tchaikovsky-Overture-Juliet-XRCD24-Master/dp/B0097RFAHU/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1372727903&sr=8-3-fkmr0&keywords=1812+previn+london+mfsl

 
 Posted:   Jul 2, 2013 - 8:03 AM   
 By:   Ray Faiola   (Member)

I have a print of William Cameron Menzies' 1929 one-reeler IMPRESSIONS OF TSCHAIKOWSKY'S OVERTURE 1812. A very interesting film with depictions of life in early Moscow. Musical direction by the ubiquitous Hugo Riesenfeld. Certainly not the greatest recording or performance, but a very unusual and entertaining early presentation.

 
 Posted:   Jul 2, 2013 - 4:15 PM   
 By:   JohnnyG   (Member)

Dorati is always on the top but this recording by the ever-reliable Estonian is really fine - a balanced and moving performance with an especially good contribution from the choir:

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 17, 2016 - 6:06 AM   
 By:   HansB64   (Member)

I have the same problem with finding beloved LP recordings on CD. I have found many "treasures" with Japanese stores. The recording of the 1812 Overture you are looking for is avalable, YES!!!, in several stores such as hmv.co.jp but it must also be available with other international stores. I bought this CD some 5 years ago (maybe more). I checked a few minutes ago and it is still available for a little over 1,000 yens on the Sony label. If you don't speak Japanese (as is my case) be sure to click on the "English" button!!!. Good luck.
HansB64

 
 Posted:   Feb 17, 2016 - 6:49 AM   
 By:   MusicMad   (Member)

Not that it's a favourite of mine but I have five recordings of this work, albeit my latest acquisition - Leonard Bernstein/NYP (1962) - has yet to be played (it was included in an 80 CD box set which we've yet to finish perusing ... smile) but I'm amused that neither this or the other four recordings have received a mention.

- Abbado/CSO (1990) ... split into two tracks
- Barenboim/CSO (1981)
- Karajan/BPO (1967)
- Solti/CSO (1986)

I'd not noticed how the Chicago Symphony Orchestra appears to have a near monopoly of this work!

I haven't played any of the recordings for over three months ... I think that last one was Solti and I recall the cannons were particularly expressive! I know both the Barenboim and Karajan versions best having had them the longest and I do like the Karajan recording with the use of the Don Kosaken Chor.

I think I shall play the Bernstein recording next.

NP: Anastasia Mio Fratello (1973) [album] - Piccioni

Mitch

 
 Posted:   Feb 17, 2016 - 6:59 AM   
 By:   soundtrackmusic   (Member)

This is a terrible piece, near the bottom of Tchaikovsky's oeuvre.

If you MUST listen to this trivial piece, use Erich Kunzel's version. At least there are cannons to camouflage a little bit of the mess.

 
 Posted:   Feb 17, 2016 - 7:48 AM   
 By:   MusicMad   (Member)

This is a terrible piece, near the bottom of Tchaikovsky's oeuvre.

If you MUST listen to this trivial piece, use Erich Kunzel's version. At least there are cannons to camouflage a little bit of the mess.


It may be one of Tchaikovsky's less interesting pieces but terrible? No!

Incidentally, I enjoy James Horner's use of some of the Overture in his score to Gorky Park (1983)

As for the Bernstein/NYP recording which I've just heard ... it's nothing to write home about and if pushed, would probably grade it lowest of the five (though the elapsed time between listens makes this judgement somewhat suspect!)

Mitch

 
 Posted:   Feb 17, 2016 - 8:40 AM   
 By:   solium   (Member)

Mine is the recording on Phase 4 LP with the red cover. Just because it's the version I heard first and most familiar with.

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/NwX8oMgqhXg/hqdefault.jpg

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 17, 2016 - 6:46 PM   
 By:   Joe 1956   (Member)

The absolute best:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0zgq_WQLVI

 
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