Another rare and historic concert this week. From the 1965 Hollywood Bowl season, a concert with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, guest conducted by the great Swedish conductor Sixten Ehrling and featuring what I understand is the Hollywood Bowl debut of Bolivian violinist Jaime Laredo in music of Kabalevsky, Mendelssohn, Sibelius and Ravel.
One of the long-thought-lost and never-to-have-existed concerts slated to be destroyed, this one was recorded by the Bowl engineers on July 27, 1965 and was never broadcast or even taped for broadcast. And in true “Symphonies Under The Stars” tradition, offers a pleasing smorgasbord of meat-and-potatoes classics complete with the occasional odd airplane, motorcycle and errant wine bottle careening down the steps to the box seats..
Opening the concert with Dmitri Kabalevsky‘s Overture to Colas Breugnon. Followed by Sibelius’ Symphony Number 1. After intermission, Jaime Laredo joins the orchestra in a performance of Mendelssohn’s ever-popular Violin Concerto and the concert finished with Ravel’s Bolero. One caveat: towards the end of the Bolero, there is some serious tape damage. I have tried fixing it as best as possible, but the ravages of time (52 years after the fact) have done a number on the tape – but it’s listenable, but not as up-to-par as the rest of the concert is.
But I think you’ll agree this is a rarity. Jaime Laredo has been a staple in our Classical music diets since his Carnegie Hall debut in 1960. He has since branched into conducting as well as, but is still considered one of the great violinists of our time. And the recordings of his work with the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio are benchmarks in excellent performances, as are his recordings with his wife Ruth Laredo.
This is early Laredo, a scant five years after his triumphant American debut and it displays all the fire and bravado he is so well known for.
Sit back and enjoy a glimpse of The Hollywood Bowl from 52 years ago.