I'm glad you liked it, but it was on the Columbia label, and Columbia recording engineers did a criminal disservice to Ormandy and the Philly strings. Neither I nor my parents would buy anything that was *not* Ormandy when I was young. That said, he has been surpassed in this material both interpretively and sound-wise. There's the evergreen Beecham on EMI with the most delectable winds ever. There's Svetlanov and the LSO on EMI, a spectacular recording, (Bishop/Parker), and an informed performance. I have a soft spot for Ansermet's with the Paris Concervatory Orchestra (on London Treasury or Blueback here in the States), because of the old-school winds and brass.
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Thanks. It's easy to get in above one's head when it comes to classical music, but I know I can rely on fellow A-goners to guide a relative newcomer in the right directions. It was the FIRST time I had heard Sheherazade! I thought the imaging and soundstage were very good, but I may have been taken by the beautiful music. The timbre of the instruments--especially woodwinds--was mediocre. I will certainly check out the recordings you suggested, especially the Beecham, which is on all three of your responses.
Don't overlook Rushtons 2d nomination. Reiner and the CSO, is IMHO, more exciting and an outstanding recording. One of the great RCA Living Stereo's. It can't be beat! And audiophiles will nod their approval as well.
Beecham's is also excellent and a worthy 2d best to Reiner's. It smooth and flows beautifully, but it is not IMHO as exciting as Reiners.
There are a lot of excellent recordings of this piece, and I have my fair share, but all but the above 2 are superflous.
I concur with Rushton and Newbee re: the Reiner/CSO on RCA. A wonderful, visceral experience. The Classic Records reissue is readily available and is a great addition to any collection.
I also enjoy the Dorati/Minneapolis Scheherazade, and was just listening to it last evening (Mercury SR90332). It is a little tipped up, and my pressing doesn't quite get the bass drum right, but the pacing and performance are great.
Has anyone yet heard the recently released Scheherazade recorded by the Marc Aubort/Joanna Nickrenz team on Classic Records CR 2002?
Moscow State Symphony Orchestra
Pavel Kogan, conductor
Classic Records CR 2002-200G
Aubort/Nickrenz are one of my favorite recording teams, thus my interest.