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  • Sony Classical: Great Performances 1903-1998
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Sony Classical: Great Performances 1903-1998 Box set

14 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, October 12, 1999
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$20.00 $6.91

Editorial Reviews

4-CD set on Sony.

Disc: 1
1. Largo al factotum
2. Obertas, mazourka caractéristique for violin & piano in G major, Op. 19
3. 2. Pihenö
4. 4. Allegro - Prestissimo
5. 5. Aria - Cantilena
See all 20 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Le Sacre du printemps (The Rite of Spring), ballet in 2 parts for orchestra: Danse sacrale
2. Ritual Fire Dance, for orchestra (from 'El Amor brujo')
3. Rodeo, selections from the ballet (including 'Four Dance Episodes'): Hoe-Down
4. Fugue for organ in G minor ('Little'), BWV 578 (BC J66)
5. Prelude and Fugue, for keyboard No. 1 in C major (WTC I/1), BWV 846 (BC L80): Prelude
See all 30 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. Eubie's Classical Rag
2. Eubie's Classical Rag
3. Cello Concerto No. 2 in D major, H. 7b/2 (Op. 101): 3. Allegro
4. Behind the Gardens, Behind the Wall, Under the Tree...
5. Perhaps love
See all 29 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. Star Wars, Episode IV: A New Hope, film score: Main Theme
2. Double Mandolin Concerto, for 2 mandolins, strings & continuo in G major, RV 532: Andante
3. Salut d'amour, for violin & piano, Op. 12
4. Minuet in A major, arrangement (after String Quintet in E major, Op.11/5 [aka Op. 13/5], G. 275)
5. Bagatelle for piano in A minor ('FÃ1/4r Elise'), WoO 59
See all 42 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Performer: Giuseppe Campanari, Marlboro Festival Octet, Members of the Philadelphia Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Philip Glass Ensemble, et al.
  • Orchestra: New York Philharmonic, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, André Kostelanetz Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Columbia Symphony Orchestra, et al.
  • Conductor: Heitor Villa-Lobos, Bruno Walter, Emil Cooper, André Kostelanetz, Eugene Ormandy, et al.
  • Composer: Gioachino Rossini, Henryk Wieniawski, Bela Bartok, Ludwig van Beethoven, Heitor Villa-Lobos, et al.
  • Audio CD (October 12, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B00000K2EX
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #131,435 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Michael B Williams on January 16, 2005
Format: Audio CD
I bought this CD because it contained some songs I was having a hard time finding elsewhere, such as Passo pel prat, Chants d'Auvergne sung by Fredrica Von Stade. However, some of the songs on this CD do not seem to belong e.g. all three songs by John Williams, Mack the Knife, Barbra Streisand, and the Psycho Murder Theme for starters, and many more.

I gave the CD 4 stars only because I was happy that I was able to find a few somewhat rare tracks.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Buyer on September 25, 2000
Format: Audio CD
This 4 CD set not only contains some of the best performances of the last century, but also works as a comprehensive review of some of the finest musical literature spanning from the Baroque period to Modern Avant-Garde. Some of the earlier recordings are better for nostalgia purposes due to the poor mediums of the times, but the performances for the most part are professional. Only complaint: Some of the best works (Wagner's "Die Walküre", for example) are only provided in excerpt form to showcase a certain performer or section of the piece. Otherwise a worthy investment for the price and amount of quality music that is presented.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Col William Russell (ret) on September 30, 2013
Format: Audio CD
Trying to put 95 years of classical "hits" onto 4 CDs causes a lot of great performances to be missed especially when a fair part of the playing time is wasted by stuff that's hardly classical. As one other review pointed out, EMI did far better on their centennial set. Too bad someone at Sony didn't think about this a little.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By S. G. Winnefeld on February 7, 2012
Format: Audio CD
I purchased this set many years ago just to have some music on while studying. Because it only presents excerpts from larger pieces, I often ended up tracking down the full album my favorite pieces came from. (Which only led to more albums, and here I am today something of a classical music nerd.) Many of the albums the excepts are pulled from are on one of Sony's budget labels, too.

I appreciate that this set presents such a large spectrum of recordings, from the earliest to nearly the latest, from Gould and Glass to Williams film scores and some opera. The booklets that accompany this set are nicely done too. The only downside to the set is its limitation to Columbia/CBS/Sony recordings.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Andre Gauthier on September 12, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
While I like this sort of recording I bought it only because it was quite cheap in the used section. It has some very interesting moments, but of course is little more than a "sampler" if you will, and one that is too stuffed with a variety performers that don't necessarily work well one against the other. To be specific, when Victor put out this sort of thing it would be "The First 100 Years at the Metropolitan Opera", and that traced just that. All the singers from 1903 until the 1983 release date. Its hardly perfect, but at least it has a purpose.

EMI did a similar reissue, but it contained one CD at a time, so one could think carefully about that which they wanted to buy.

This is one of the rare times I'm going to say there's just too much here, and not always of a good thing. They barely raid the cupboard of older recordings, and I assume Sony has a heck of a lot of them. Two CD sets from each decade could have been a far more intesting and thought provoking A&R decission. Four CDs that are aimed at nothing more than what I mentioned earlier don't really cut it
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By E. J. Biddinger on May 17, 2002
Format: Audio CD
This is a sampler in the truest meaning of the word. I bought this 4 CD work primarly for two tracks, but also because I was interested to see what else was out there without investing a fortune in CD's I wouldn't like! I was surprised by the wide diversity of music ranging from true classical and jazz to contemporary compositions and interpretations.
While I find some tracks divine (Williams's _Schindler's List_), I find other tracks unsettling (_Beau Soir_ performed by Barbra Streisand). But when you are trying to span 100 years of music, you will (and should) encounter all tastes and styles. Overall, I really enjoy listening to this set. My only regret is that I don't have a CD changer...
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By annemal on January 27, 2002
Format: Audio CD
An exceptional set. The history of music making of the 20th century in 4 CDs. Even from the first track with Giuseppe Campanari and Charles Adams Prince you can see that people put much time in collecting the best interpretations and putting together an amazing collection. Other highlights include the "Mack The Knife" with Lotte Lenya, the Bachiana Brasileiras, The Fanfare For The Common Man with LSO conducted by the composer and so many more. An undespiuted FIVE STARS
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