monteux

Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherazade” is one helluva piece when it’s played like this. Here’s the finale, as recorded by Pierre Monteux and the San Francisco Symphony in 1942. (Monteux first conducted the piece for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes.)  You will probably notice that the orchestra itself is not quite up to modern standards (not bad though), but boy oh boy what a performance, what style. I cranked up the old gramophone and listened to the entire recording last night; it’s all this good. The liner notes said this was the most popular recording of the piece in the 78-rpm era.

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