eBook Toscanini download

by Harvey Sachs

eBook Toscanini download ISBN: 0761501371
Author: Harvey Sachs
Publisher: Prima Lifestyles (October 4, 1995)
Language: English
Pages: 400
ePub: 1650 kb
Fb2: 1478 kb
Rating: 4.3
Other formats: mbr docx lrf doc
Category: Art and Photo
Subcategory: Music

Harvey Sachs, (born Cleveland, Ohio, June 8, 1946) is an iss writer who has written many books on musical subjects

Harvey Sachs, (born Cleveland, Ohio, June 8, 1946) is an iss writer who has written many books on musical subjects. Toscanini, Philadelphia & New York: J. B. Lippincott, 1978. Reflections on Toscanini, New York: Grove Weidenfeld, 1991. The Letters of Arturo Toscanini, e. New York: Knopf, 2002.

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Set in his native Italy, across Europe and the Americas, and in 1930s Palestine, with candid portraits of Verdi, Puccini, Caruso, Geraldine Farrar, Mussolini, and many others, Toscanini soars in its exploration of genius, music, and moral courage, taking its place among the greatest music biographies of our time.

by. Sachs, Harvey, 1946-. Books for People with Print Disabilities. Internet Archive Books. Uploaded by sf-loadersive. org on September 3, 2010.

Musician of Conscience. Age Range: 1867 - 1957. In his lifetime, Arturo Toscanini (1867-1957) was considered the greatest conductor of all, and music historian Sachs (Curtis Institute of Music; The Ninth: Beethoven and the World in 1824, 2010, et. makes a strong case for that assessment with judicious quotations from contemporary sources.

Arturo Toscanini (1867-1957) was famed for his dedication, photographic memory, explosive temper and impassioned performances. At times he dominated La Scala, the Metropolitan Opera, the New York Philharmonic, and the Bayreuth, Salzburg and Lucerne festivals. His reforms influenced generations of musicians, and his opposition to Nazism and Fascism made him a model for artists of conscience.

Arturo Toscanini (1867-1957) is the most famous operatic and symphonic conductor in history. When Harvey Sachs' Reflections on Toscanini was first published in 1978, it was acclaimed internationally as the definitive biography of the extraordinary maestro. Now Sachs has revised and expanded this classic book, further exploring the conductor's controversial musicianship, conducting, recordings, drastic rehearsal methods, and influence on repertory.
Comments: (4)
Toscanini's impact on Vienna's orchestra-

''Although I had known the orchestra more than twenty years, I never had lived through the phenomenon of such a superhuman concentration as it showed at these rehearsals. . . The orchestra which had been day in and day out with Strauss, Weingartner, Bruno Walter, and Klemperer - with this ensemble of the greatest talent in the world - the orchestra, with Toscanini, realized this was the climax of every musicians experience.'' (227)

'Climax of every musicians experience???' What experience?

''Not only because he was superior to other conductors - which was taken for granted; but because he made us 'superior to ourselves' - which was the phenomenon that was practically unexplainable.'' (227)


This unearthly, even spiritual, impact of Toscanini serves as key melody in this work. What kind of person was he. How did he function?

Toscanini stopped composing and the cello while young. ''He instinctively respected those who knew how to do their job well. . . . This anti-dilettantism was an essential part of his personality, even during his youth. Why give up composing? 'I knew that whatever I composed would have fallen below the standard I set for myself. . . . So very many masterpieces are necessary to a mans spiritual life; there is no need and no place for mediocrity.'' (29)

This overwhelming drive to excellence, this religious devotion to perfection, created incredible music and incredible suffering.

''By the time he reached adolescence Arturo Toscanini was completely possessed by his love of music and by his desire to get inside it, and the other aspects of his life were of secondary importance. One could call this a distorted point of view; and the distortion was so pronounced in this case that it was eventually to make life difficult for many people who came in direct contact with it, and sometimes insufferable for the man who was its direct victim.'' (12)

"But the mental discipline which that distortion demanded also brought its own form of healthiness. It is no exaggeration to say that this book is the story of that distortion and its consequences.'' (12)


1 Parma and Rio de Janeiro
2 Journeyman
3 La Scala
4 The Metropolitan
5 Milan and New York
6 To Dare to Answer 'No'
7 The Phenomenon
8 Last Years
Some observations

Appendix I
Appendix II
Editor's Note

This work could be heard as two intertwined melodies. One, the day-to-day description of Toscanini's rise and life of world class conductor. Vast detail, comprehensive analysis, host of players, draw a vivid picture of Toscanini's activity.

Sachs uses many letters to and from Toscanini, and others, to add credibility and accuracy. Tremendous research, including regular references to other biographies. Sometimes agrees, sometimes offers alternatives.

One letter - '' 'The most important quality in a conductor? Humility, humilty,' he says, . . . If something doesn't go well, it's because I haven't understood the composer. It's all my fault. Whoever thinks that Mozart, Beethoven, Wagner, Verdi are mistaken and have to be corrected is an idiot. One must study more, begin studying again, understand better. They haven't written music in order for me to look good. It is i who must make them look good. . . The conductor must not create, he must achieve.' '' (200)

'' 'Humility, faithfulness, clarity, unity.' . . . Maestro Toscanini whispers, 'He believes, says and does these things. But to hear about humility from -.' '' (200)

(Reminds me of Faraday. Spent decades working to disprove his favorite, most notable ideas. Everyone, without exception, proclaimed him the very essence of humility. Yet, Faraday overturned Newton and began what Einstein finished. Was he humbley reading god's creation or arrogantly contradicting Newton?)

The other theme, which I really enjoyed, was Sachs conclusions and insights. Well thought out, careful and discerning. Sachs clearly admires Toscanini, but doesn't pass over into worship. Presents his violent temper, lifelong womanizing, addiction to gossip, without excusing; although explaining the reasons and circumstances.

Nevertheless, highlights the warm affection for others, commitment to family and high ideals. Presents considerable detail on his conflict with Mussolini and fascists. Explains his open defense of Jewish musicians and his travels to Palestine in support.

After Toscanini's attack by fascist thugs, a friend visited and wrote -

'' 'Truth,' Toscanini said, 'truth we must have at any price, and freedom of speech, even if that price should be death. I have said to to our fascists time and again: You can kill me if you wish, but as long as I am living I shall say what I think'. . . He was in no way the broken man one might have expected to see. On the contrary, he was full of vigor and dynamic energy.'' (214)

Inspiring! Integrity, courage, determination.

Last paragraph - ''This book, however, has not been written in praise of Arturo Toscanini's achievements (which in any case do not require my praise), but rather in tribute to his concentratedness, his terrible honesty, his unfailing sense of direction and his relentless self-dissatisfaction.''

Six hundred references.
Appendix I is a map of Toscanini's normal orchestral seating.
Appendix II is thirteen pages of the Toscanini Repertoire. Sachs notes this 'is just the barest skeleton of a catalog'.
Great book of a great man
I'm a huge Harvey Sachs fan. This biography is clear eyed, immaculately researched, arrestingly written and in general, brilliantly executed. Harvey Sachs is THE MAN.