C1676. KLAUS TENNSTEDT Cond. London Phil.: Symphony #1 in C - Live Performance, 14 Dec., 1989;
KLAUS TENNSTEDT Cond. NDR S.O., w. GIDON KREMER: Violin Concerto in D [with cadenzas by Shnittke] (both Beethoven). [Ravishing performances, to say the least . . . the Schnittke cadenzas are a unique trip . . . captured in brilliant sound!] (Canada) St Laurent Studio YSL T-766. Transfers by Yves St Laurent.
Beethoven Sym #1 (purportedly Mecklenburg Staatskapelle 1968) and Violin Concerto (Kremer, NDR, 1980). I already had the same (Mecklenburg) performance of Sym 1 in a couple of other transfers, so I compared out of curiosity. It was immediately obvious that the YSL CD is actually a different performance, which a little sleuthing revealed as one with the London PO, 14/12/1989 (once available in superior sound on BBC Legends).
“Driven by his strikingly uncompromising artistic philosophy, Gidon Kremer has established a worldwide reputation as one of his generation’s most original and compelling artists. His repertoire encompasses standard classical scores and music by leading twentieth and twenty-first century composers. He has championed the works of Russian and Eastern European composers and performed many important new compositions, several of which have been dedicated to him. His name is closely associated with such composers as Alfred Schnittke, Arvo Pärt, Giya Kancheli, Sofia Gubaidulina, Valentin Silvestrov, Luigi Nono, Edison Denisov, Aribert Reimann, John Adams, Victor Kissine, Michael Nyman, Philip Glass, Leonid Desyatnikov and Astor Piazzolla, whose works he performs in ways that respect tradition while being fully alive to their freshness and originality. It is fair to say that no other soloist of comparable international stature has done more to promote the cause of contemporary composers and new music for violin.
Gidon Kremer has recorded over 120 albums, many of which have received prestigious international awards in recognition of their exceptional interpretative insights. In 2016 Gidon Kremer received a Praemium Imperiale prize, widely considered to be the Nobel Prize of music.”
- Kronberg Academy
“Mainly I saw the Praemium Imperiale prize as a confirmation that one should remain loyal to oneself - something I always tried to do and to express….It means to me that keeping one’s own values alive, sticking to them after all, makes sense. What is important in our short lives is not just what we experience ourselves, but everything that we are able to share with others. In fact, what we give away.”
- GIDON KREMER
“Because he spent the beginning of his career in East Germany, Klaus Tennstedt was virtually unknown in the West until he was in his late 40s. But his international career took off after he left East Germany in 1971. From the time he made his first appearances in North America, with the Toronto and Boston Symphony Orchestras in 1974, he was regarded as an uncommonly probing, expressive conductor of works from the mainstream Romantic repertory.
Mr. Tennstedt was born in Merseburg, Germany, on 6 June, 1926. When he was 15, he enrolled at the Leipzig Conservatory, where he studied violin, piano and music theory. He also studied in Dresden during World War II, and he told one interviewer that after the firebombing of Dresden in 1944, he was in the fire brigade and assigned to dig bodies out of the rubble.
In 1948 he was appointed concertmaster of the Halle Municipal Theater Orchestra, where his father was a violinist. Four years later he began conducting the Orchestra, and he soon became its music director. In 1958, he became music director of the Dresden Opera and in 1962 he took over the Schwerin State Orchestra and the Schwerin State Theater. During the 1960s, Mr. Tennstedt had an active touring schedule in East Germany, and was a frequent guest of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the Dresden Philharmonic, the Dresden Staatskapelle and the Berlin Radio Orchestra. He also performed in the Soviet Union and in Czechoslovakia. When preparing for a tour in 1971, Mr. Tennstedt found that his passport had been mistakenly stamped with an exit visa for the West. He left East Germany for Sweden, announced his intention not to return, and persuaded the East German Government to allow his wife to join him. In Sweden, he became the director of the Stora Theater in Goteborg and the conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra in Stockholm. In 1972, he became director of the Kiel Opera in West Germany.
Mr. Tennstedt's first break in North America occurred after the death of Karel Ancerl, the director of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. When the Orchestra's managing director, Walter Homburger, went to Europe in search of a replacement, he read some reviews of Mr. Tennstedt's work in Kiel. After hearing him conduct Bruckner's Seventh Symphony, he hired him for a series of Toronto concerts in May 1974. He made his Boston Symphony debut later that year. [This outstanding performance, described as a 'once in a lifetime' event, in which Tennstedt gave the Boston audience and radio listeners a positively electrifying account of Bruckner's 8th, is still talked about in Boston to this day! After rehearsing, the Orchestra spontaneously broke into applause during a coffee break.]
Mr. Tennstedt became principal guest conductor of the London Philharmonic in 1977, served as principal guest conductor of the Minnesota Orchestra from 1979 to 1982, and returned to the London Philharmonic as its music director from 1983 to 1987. After he relinquished the post, he became the Orchestra's conductor laureate.”
- Allan Kozinn, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 13 Jan., 1998