Sunday, February 23, 2014
I listened to this CD for the first time the other day. A couple of thoughts: 1) Otto Klemperer had a long career as a first class conductor. But you may recognize his son more than him; Werner Klemperer was the actor who most famously portrayed Colonel Klink on the 1960's sitcom "Hogan's Heroes". 2) The Bruckner 9th Symphony is EPIC. Bruckner was my father's favorite composer, so naturally he became one of my favorites as well. This is a huge work lasting well over 65 minutes. As stated in the CD's liner notes, "Bruckner dedicated the symphony (his last) "Dem lieben Gott"-(to dear God). It has three movements, the last being Adagio that is so extraordinary I can't really describe it with much justice other than I find it exceptionally spiritual. Along with the 4th and 8th symphonies, this is my favorite. And after hearing it again the other day, I love it even more. 3) This is a great CD. It was recorded in February 1970 when Klemperer was 85 years old! I can't imagine the stamina, concentration, and strength it must take to conduct this piece. To be able to do so at the age of 85 seems remarkable. It was released 3 years later in April 1973, three months before he died at the age of 88.