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As to the 'bits and pieces' -- well, just enjoy them as generous extras. The prelude to Hansel and Gretel [listen -- track 1, 1:41-2:42] is treated with such seriousness and grandeur at the outset, that we might be listening to the Parsifal prelude. But Stokowski has the uncanny ability to convey affection and delight, and this is truly treasurable. The Mozart 'Sleigh Ride' is done with a wonderful sense of fun, and the clear and alert percussion are a real delight.

The Strauss Waltzes which conclude the disc were, I imagine, intended to fit onto twelve inch 78 sides, and are cropped accordingly. Echt-Wienerisch they are therefore not. But think of them as tuneful and delightful encores, after a fine feast of music-making, and they have their enjoyable place in the scheme of things.

I have to thank our Editor for putting another Stokowski feast my way. I can only address him as Oliver would have done: 'please, sir, I want some more!'

Copyright © 14 August 2002 David Thompson, Eastwood, Essex, UK


Stokowski - Schumann and Haydn

CACD0532 ADD Mono REISSUE 75'10" 2002 Cala Records Ltd

Leopold Stokowski and his Symphony Orchestra

Humperdinck: Prelude to Hansel and Gretel; Haydn: Symphony No 53 in D, The Imperial; Mozart: German Dance No 3, The Sleigh Ride; Schumann: Symphony No 2 in C Op 61; Johann Strauss II: On the Beautiful Blue Danube; Johann Strauss II: Tales from the Vienna Woods




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