C1955. ARTUR RODZINSKI Cond. NYPO & Westminster Choir, w. Dorothy Kirsten, Nan Merriman, William Hain & Todd Duncan: THE PRAIRIE (Lukas Foss; Carl Sandburg). (Canada) St Laurent Studio T-1184, Live Performance, 21 Jan., 1945, Carnegie Hall, w.Broadcast Commentary. Transfers by Yves St Laurent.
"Foss, whose family fled first Berlin and then Paris, had never seen the prairie when he wrote the work, and he still never has. Lukas Fuchs, as he was then known, arrived on the Upper West Side of New York City in 1937. THE PRAIRIE was inspired in part by the effort of Aaron Copland to write classical music that was distinctively American."
- Rebecca Mead, THE NEW YORKER, 16 July, 2007
“Lukas Foss' THE PRAIRIE, a seven-movement cantata for SATB soloists, mixed chorus, and orchestra, is a well-crafted and audience-friendly setting of the poem of the same name by Carl Sandburg. Acclaimed at its 1944 premiere, THE PRAIRIE has not enjoyed a robust performance history. THE PRAIRIE is an ideal vehicle for a project-based chorus, which is itself an opportunity to create a new community. A correlation may exist between ‘community’ and ‘vulnerability’, that is, when a choral singer feels comfortably connected to fellow singers, he or she may be more likely to open up to new ways of making sounds for the ultimate service of the music. Results are inconclusive, but the project points to a successful strategy for creating an affirming new community and to positive musical and nonmusical results of intentional community-building.”
“A remarkable and important work, a stunning tribute to the midwest THE PRAIRIE, is composed by Lucas Foss, to words excerpted from Carl Sandburg's CORNHUSKERS poetic opus. For those of us who have lived and worked on the prairie, Sandburg's words carry an association with the grandeur of expansive sunsets, free, clear skies and flowing waves of wind on abundant fields. In expanding and coloring the sense of the poetry of Carl Sandburg, Lucas Foss has succeeded to an immortal achievement. It is a pleasure not to be denied, a keepsake.”
- James Buechele
"Although Rodzinski conducted most of the Country's major orchestras, his tenure often ended in a huff. In 1947 he had quit the coveted job of boss of the New York Philharmonic because, he said, he felt hemmed in and hampered by the Philharmonic's businesslike manager.
Rodzinski was known as a great builder of orchestras. Time and again he took over run-down orchestras and in a few years, by cajolery, psychology and almost ruthless dedication, built them into the finest of artistic groups."
- LOS ANGELES TIMES, 28 Nov., 1958