So I have a question about live recordings of the Prok 2. What are the earliest recordings? This week I came across a 1948 performance with a Zadel Skolovsky, apparently a US pianist, I don’t know anything about him. But he played a truncated (coda) version of the Prok 2 with Munch. Are there earlier recorded performances than this?
Someone here surely knows. Years ago I had the early studio Bolet recording, I think from '53. I’m wondering if more live performances from '48 or earlier exist?
All I can contribute with is that it’s unlikely any earlier live rec than that would exist. By 1948 the concerto’s popularity still hadn’t taken off, and it was also juuuuust as European stations began transitioning to magnetic tape which made archiving feasible. At least relatively speaking few broadcasts at all survive prior to 1948, and the majority were privately recorded.
That’s the western world… What went on in Russia at the time I don’t know.
My earliest is from 1954 FWIW, and Bolet had made the premiere recording just months earlier. From Ashkenazy’s US debut with it in 1958 it appears more and more frequently on programs.
Bolet, Frager, Zak. I can’t think of any earlier ones.
I nicked this from the NYP archives
Right, from when is the Zak?
The missing names now are Földes, Cherkassky and Henriot-Schweitzer I believe who also had it up very early, but not pre-1948 as far as I know.
I think the Zak is from 1951 - here 'tis, 4 FLAC files:
USSR Radio Symphony, Moscow / Kurt Sanderling
I believe Henriot-Schweitzer was 1958, Baloghova 1964, Browning 1965, etc. The Cherkassky is 1955, I think, and I never knew Foldes played it.
Shura, Földes and NHS all played it in the years immediately after Bolet’s rec, but I don’t think any of them did already in the 40s (though I don’t know).
I have such a listening backlog that I’m a bit wary adding more to it - is the Zak worth hearing you think? I remember it’s been mentioned here several times earlier, but I’ve never listened to it myself.
Fuck it. With Sanderling conducting this is probably something I want to take a look at. Thanks for the UL!
I remember it to be quite magnificent and powerful, though the tempos often a bit slower than what we mostly hear nowadays. Also, no suprise, very good orchestral support.
Yes the Zak is definitely worth hearing – very powerful performance, as Erwin said. I haven’t heard H-S or Foldes in this but I can’t imagine they’ll approach da Zak.