C1148. PAUL KLETZKI Cond. Orchestre National de Paris: Symphony #102 in B-flat (Haydn), Live Performance, 30 Oct., 1952; w.Maurizio Pollini: Concerto #1 in e (Chopin), Live Performance, 3 May, 1960. (Germany) Archipel 0550. - 4035122405507
“Paul Kletzki was a highly respected conductor in the middle years of the 1900s. He was a composition student at the Warsaw Conservatory and the Berlin Academy and had taken violin as a boy and continued his studies on that instrument in Warsaw with Emil Mlynarski. His first professional job was as a member of the Lodz Philharmonic Orchestra, meanwhile composing as well. When he débuted as a conductor in Berlin in 1923 it was in a concert of his own compositions. He settled in Berlin, where he conducted and composed actively. He left Germany in 1933 when he went to Venice and Milan and received an invitation to teach composition and orchestra at the Milan Scola Superiore di Musica. From 1937 to 1938 he was the musical director of the Kharkov Philharmonic Orchestra in the U.S.S.R. At the end of that term he left for Switzerland, where he remained, taking Swiss citizenship in 1947. Kletzki conducted widely after the War and came into demand for his qualities of lucidity and power, together with fresh conceptions of the music. He was particularly in demand as a guest conductor in South and Central America, and had a close association with the Israel Philharmonic. He was music director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra (1958 - 1962), the Bern Symphony Orchestra (1964 - 1966), and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (1968 - 1970). He had received considerable praise for his compositions, particularly before World War II, when he had more time to write. However, most of his output was lost in the destruction of World War II.”
- Joseph Stevenson, allmusic.com
“Perhaps more of an advocate for contemporary music than any other major pianist essentially rooted in traditional repertory, Maurizio Pollini was born in Milan, Italy. He learned quickly and was given piano lessons from Carlo Lonati from an early age, making his public début at the age of nine. Enrolling in the Milan Conservatory, he studied with Carlo Vidusso. In 1957 he performed a recital of Chopin études in Milan that drew favorable attention from the national Italian press. He won a second prize in the Geneva Competition in 1958, and embarking on further studies with Arturo Benedetto Michelangeli, he won first prize in the Warsaw Chopin competition in 1960. At this point he began a highly successful and acclaimed international career as a piano virtuoso. He appeared in concert throughout Europe, performing concerti with top conductors, and also giving recitals. He found a particular affinity with his countryman, conductor Claudio Abbado; the two shared a similarly analytical approach in their interpretations, and many of Pollini's best concerto recordings and concert collaborations have been with Abbado. Pollini débuted in the United States at Carnegie Hall on 1 November, 1968. Since then his international and recording career has continued without pause.
He is a pianist with a clean, bright though weighty, and refined sound, with exceptional clarity. His repertoire is extraordinarily wide, and he frequently performs Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, and the Romantics such as Schubert and Schumann, but also the early modernists such as Prokofiev and Bartók. In the 1974 centenary celebrations of Arnold Schönberg's birth he played programs encompassing that composer's complete piano music in several major musical centers, and he later recorded the entire body of work. His repertoire also extends into the avant-garde; in 1972 he gave the world premiere of Luigi Nono's ‘Como una ola de fuerza y luz’, (Milan, 1972) and also recorded the work. He is also an enthusiastic performer of Boulez's Second Piano Sonata, regarded by some as the most difficult of all piano sonatas. He has recorded extensively, committing to disc works by Schönberg, Stravinsky, Chopin, Bach, Boulez, and many others.
Since the 1980s, Pollini has been widening his activities as a conductor. He frequently led concerts from the keyboard, and has conducted orchestra concerts from the podium as well as leading operas. In 1987 he received the Ehrenring prize of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. His piano career has the individualism achieved by only a few great artists, continuing to focus on contemporary music and including concert series of his own design at such prestigious venues as the Salzburg Festival (in 1995 and 1999) and Carnegie Hall (in the 1999-2000 and 2000-2001 seasons).”
- Joseph Stevenson, allmusic.com