Music for clarinet by Brahms -
'These CD performances are wholly admirable ...'
After the Second World War, Meiningen disappeared into the fringes of East Germany,
with nearest metropolitan centre at Karl Marx-Stadt. Previously it had enjoyed heady
days of musical glory, when a cousin of Bach's was kapellmeister and successive dukes
played the cello. A crucial moment was the summons in 1880 of Hans von Bülow as
conductor for the orchestra. Having lost his wife to Wagner, Bülow was increasingly
ready to champion Brahms, who had opportunity to try out new works on the increasingly
resplendent orchestra. With Richard Strauss as sometime assistant, Bülow built up
an enviable tradition of excellence till his 1885 departure in a huff.
Copyright © 26 August 2004
Robert Anderson, London UK