Wednesday, 16 July 2014

FREE Herbert von Karajan - today only

Herbert von Karajan died 25 years ago today. He was Chief Conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic from 1966 to 1989. The Berliner Philharmoniker website now contains a section dedicated to his memory. In the Digital Concert Hall "you will find recordings of the Unitel company from the sixties and seventies, including Dvořák’s Symphony “From the New World”, a Brahms cycle, Beethoven’s Symphonies Nos. 3, 6, 7 and 9 and the documentary Karajan – The Second Life."

"On today’s anniversary, these films as well as the recording of the memorial concert for Herbert von Karajan which took place in Salzburg cathedral in the summer of 1999 with the Berliner Philharmoniker and Claudio Abbado, are available free of charge. Further films with Herbert von Karajan will be released in the Digital Concert Hall into next year. During this time we will also talk to musicians of the Berliner Philharmoniker about their memories of Herbert von Karajan and these conversations will be made available as a documentary"  Read more here

Further recording s will be released in the next few weeks, Altogether they will create an excellent one-stop archive. If you're already registered, log in and watch for free. If you're not already registered, you can register and enjoy, too. But just for today. It's definitely worth signing up because you get access to all the Berliner Philharmoniker concerts, year round, and all those in the archive. So we have to pay to participate, but that's fair enough. The arts cost money. For a reasonable fee, you get the world's finest orchestra (arguably) right in your own room, wherever you might live. Politicians grumble that classical music doesn't breach the masses. That's not true. You can't measure audiences simply in terms of filling halls.

Many in my generation were conditioned to hate Karajan for his politics and his style, just as trolls today hold extreme views on contemporary conductors. I don't do bandwagons, as anyone who reads me regularly will know. I really came to Sibelius through Karajan's chilling, almost demonic interpretations. Pity Adorno kept his ears closed.

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