Sir Colin Davis: The Early Recordings
DAVIS, COLIN SIR
Beethoven: Symphony No. 7 in A major, Op. 92 Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Leonore Overture No. 3, Op. 72b Sinfonia of London Berlioz: Harold en Italie, Op. 16 Yehudi Menuhin (viola) Philharmonia Orchestra Brahms: Variations on a theme by Haydn for orchestra, Op. 56a 'St Anthony Variations' Sinfonia of London Mendelssohn: Hebrides Overture, Op. 26 Sinfonia of London Mozart: Symphony No. 29 in A major, K201 Sinfonia of London Symphony No. 34 in C major, K338 Sinfonia of London Symphony No. 39 in E flat major, K543 Sinfonia of London Oboe Concerto In C major, K314 Léon Goossens (oboe) Sinfonia of London Serenade No. 13 in G major, K525 'Eine kleine Nachtmusik' Philharmonia Orchestra German Dances (3), K605 Philharmonia Orchestra Serenade No. 6 in D major, K239 'Serenata Notturna' Philharmonia Orchestra La finta giardiniera, K196: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Idomeneo, K366: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Die Entführung aus dem Serail, K384: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Der Schauspieldirektor, K486: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Le nozze di Figaro, K492: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Don Giovanni, K527: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Così fan tutte, K588: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Die Zauberflöte, K620: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra La clemenza di Tito, K621: Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Rossini: Il Signor Bruschino Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra L'Italiana in Algeri Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra La gazza ladra Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Semiramide Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Guillaume Tell Overture Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Stravinsky: Oedipus Rex Sir Ralph Richardson (Speaker), Ronald Dowd (Oedipus), Raimund Herincx (Creon), Harold Blackburn (Tiresias), Patricia Johnson (Jocasta), Raimund Herincx (Messenger) & Alberto Remedios (Shepherd) Sadler’s Wells Opera Chorus (men’s voices) & Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Tippett: Piano Concerto John Ogdon (piano) Philharmonia Orchestra Wagner: Siegfried Idyll Sinfonia of London
Sir Colin Davis was born on 25th September, 1927 in Weybridge and hence this year he celebrates his 85th birthday. His instrument was the Clarinet which he studied at the Royal College of Music and was a bandsman in the Household Cavalry. His inability to play the piano hindered his wish to be a conductor as he was refused entry into the RCM conducting class as well as an apprenticeship in opera houses. He gained experience informally with a group of RCM students and in his early 20’s his Mozart performances with the Chelsea Opera Group marked him out for potential greatness. At the age of 30 he was appointed assistant conductor of the BBC Scottish Orchestra and two years later an indisposed Otto Klemperer allowed him the opportunity to conduct Don Giovanni at the Festival Hall. This year, 1959 also marks his recording debut – appropriately in Mozart. In 1960 he replaced an ill Beecham at Glyndebourne in Die Zauberflöte and the following year he was appointed musical director of Sadler’s Wells Opera where he added success in Stravinsky, notably Oedipus Rex, to his Mozart and introduced the music of Weill and Janácek to British audiences. It was during this period that the solo orchestral recordings together with Oedipus Rex were made; the Berlioz and Tippett concerto recordings were made in 1962 and 1963 respectively. By 1964 he was in increasing demand for orchestral concerts and he left Sadler’s Wells. Two years later he made his Metropolitan Opera debut with Peter Grimes and in 1967 started his four year tenure as principal conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra where he became a hero to the younger members of the Prom audience for his adventurous programming. Following his successes at the Royal Opera, where he made in debut in 1965 (he had conducted the Royal Ballet five years previously), he succeeded Solti as musical director in 1971. He was knighted in 1980.