Toscanini's 1939 Beethoven Cycle, Pt. 2

"There is no end to the marvel of music as familiar as Beethoven’s Second and Fourth Symphonies and the third “Leonore” overture, which Mr. Toscanini performed for the second program of the Beethoven series he gave with the NBC Symphony Orchestra last night in Radio City. How can any music, so well known, so endlessly played, keep its extraordinary significance?

The reason, of course, lay in the wholly exceptional performance, which, whether or not the listener agreed with their every aspect, were fully abreast of Mr. Toscanini’s customary standards of tonal beauty, meticulous finish, grace and power; and, on occasion, the passionate torrent of Beethoven's feeling, which sweeps everything before it." - New York Times, 1939

This year sees the 80th anniversary of Toscanini's legendary 1939 Beethoven Cycle with the NBC Symphony Orchestra. This unique series of concerts unfolded over six weeks of extended broadcasts beginning October 28th and running up to the grand finale at Carnegie Hall on 3rd December, and each is getting release on Pristine. This second volume adds the Symphony No. 2 and Symphony No. 4 to the series, together with the Third Leonore Overture.