The Philadelphia Orchestra Fantasia (Remastered Original Soundtrack Edition) (2-CD)
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- Number of Discs: 2
- Released: July 31, 2001
- Originally Released: 2001
- Label: Walt Disney Records
Entertainment Weekly - 10/12/01, p.36Ranked #46 in EW's "100 Best Movie Soundtracks" - "...The best possible synergy between film and music..."
Tracks on Disc 1:
- 1.Toccata and Fugue, for organ in D minor, BWV 565 (BC J37)
- 2.Nutcracker, suite from the ballet, Op. 71a: Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a: Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy
- 3.Nutcracker, suite from the ballet, Op. 71a: Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a: Chinese Dance
- 4.Nutcracker, suite from the ballet, Op. 71a: Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a: Dance of the Reed Flutes
- 5.Nutcracker, suite from the ballet, Op. 71a: Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a: Arabian Dance
- 6.Nutcracker, suite from the ballet, Op. 71a: Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a: Russian Dance
- 7.Nutcracker, suite from the ballet, Op. 71a: Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a: Waltz of the Flowers
- 8.Sorcerer's Apprentice, The (L'apprenti sorcier), symphonic scherzo for orchestra
- 9.Sacre du printemps, Le (The Rite of Spring), ballet in 2 parts for orchestra
Tracks on Disc 2:
- 1.Symphony No. 6 in F major ("Pastoral"), Op. 68: Symphony No. 6 (Pastoral) Op. 68: I Allegro Ma Non Troppo
- 2.Symphony No. 6 in F major ("Pastoral"), Op. 68: Symphony No. 6 (Pastoral) Op. 68: II Andante Molto Mosso
- 3.Symphony No. 6 in F major ("Pastoral"), Op. 68: Symphony No. 6 (Pastoral) Op. 68: III Allegro / IV Allegro / V Allegretto
- 4.Gioconda, opera in 4 acts: Dance of the Hours, La
- 5.Night on Bald Mountain (Noch' na L‹soy gore), symphonic poem, edited by Stokowski
- 6.Ellens Gesang III ("Ave Maria"), song for voice & piano, D. 839 (Op. 52/6)
Song previews provided courtesy of iTunes
Performed by The Philadelphia Orchestra, conducted by Leopold Stokowski.
Recording information: 1940.
Leopold Strokowski's 1940 recordings with the Philadelphia Orchestra for the movie Fantasia were landmarks on several counts. Apart from attempting to bring classical music to the masses in the theater, the soundtrack album -- which came out on LP in the 1950s -- was one of the earliest stereo recordings, featuring some of the most enjoyable high-fidelity sound of the period and boasting impeccable performances (even if the pieces were mostly re-edited and shortened). Apart from his reputation as a fiercely independent musical personality, Stokowski was also a showman with very few peers, and his careful yet extroverted performances of these pieces (including Stravinsky's "The Rite of Spring" and the summary of Beethoven's "Pastorale Symphony") introduced many listeners not blessed with classical music educations to these pieces for the first time. (As the film wasn't a success on its initial release, there weren't millions of such listeners, but at least many tens of thousands.) The performances on Fantasia retain their luster in the modern era, with sound clean enough that they do not need to be considered "historical" recordings. The recordings are also infinitely preferable to the mid-'80s attempt to re-score Fantasia with a modern orchestra and modern sound -- not only did the latter fall considerably short of what people expected, but the interpretations were flaccid and dull by comparison with the originals. ~ Bruce Eder
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