Made during the pioneering days of stereo technology when everyone was vying for a piece of the cake, it is hard to believe that this absolutely topnotch recording of Tchaikovsky’s “Pathétique“ has never been brought to the ears of music lovers until today. And it is even more unbelievable since it was made by a first-class orchestra, the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, and conducted by one of the greatest conductors of the 20th century, Ferenc Fricsay. The reasons for the non-release are a matter of speculation because those responsible have kept them under their hat.
Not even the man behind the microphone, Werner Wolf, can recall making this recording – although a yellowed recording protocol discloses carefully noted details about the recording venue and date. No wonder that the tapes never got made into records. It is not with a little pride and much joyful anticipation that the announcement can be made: the record is spinning on the turntable at last!
And at long last a gap in Fricsay’s repertoire can be closed. Specially recommended: listen to the wonderful clarity of the upper strings which is preserved even in the softest passages.