Tribute to Toscanini (Symphony of the Air) - Memorial Album - Roulette RSP-1 (2LP set)
Jacket EX / LPs VG+ / US pressing
This fascinating and rare 2 LP gatefold set from Roulette (RSP-1, US pressing, white label, mono) entitled “Symphony of the Air · The Orchestra that Refused to Die · Tribute to Arturo Toscanini” features the former NBC Symphony Orchestra in its reincarnation as the “Symphony of the Air” following the retirement of Toscanini and NBC’s offical disbandment of the orchestra. As the liner notes explain, they gave their first concert – without conductor – at New York’s Carnegie Hall on 27 October 1954 and the reception was rapturous. Incidentally, their Concertmaster was the future Beaux Arts Trio violinist, Daniel Guilet.
They are heard in here in the following program:
Dvorak: Symphony No. 9 in E minor Op. 95
Wagner: Prelude to Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
Berlioz: Roman Carnaval Overture Op. 9
Tchaikovsky: Suite to The Nutcracker Op. 71a
The Symphony of the Air play wonderfully here, with tremendous verve and expressiveness and negligible loss in ensemble. A fascinating bit of musical history and richly enjoyable listening experience. The sound is first rate.
Incidentally, the photo of the jacket that I have provided does not do it justice (I am not a professional photographer). The album is really nice, with the reproduction of the score in gold embossed notation.
There are superb liner notes by Jay S. Harrison, Music Editor of the N.Y. Herald Tribune, printed in English only. The striking cover design is uncredited.
The gradations of condition I use are as follows: MINT, Near-Mint, Excellent, Very Good, Good, Fair, Poor.
The condition of the jacket is EXCELLENT. There is minor wear at corners, but that is all. There are no seamsplits, bends, owners’ markings, or other flaws, and the album remain solid, bright, and highly attractive – overall, an excellent collector’s copy.
The condition of the LP is VERY GOOD+. Though there is light surface noise throughout, in general the playback remains quite fine. However, those wanting a flawless or near-MINT copy are kindly advised to look elsewhere. Overall, this rates as a very good collector's copy.