Günther Wand, Conductor – Ruggiero Ricci – NDR Symphony – Norther German Radio – May 11, 1987 –
Legendary violinist Ruggiero Ricci with the North German Radio Symphony led by the equally legendary Günther Wand in a program of music by Ligeti, Saint-Saëns and Schumann – recorded in Hamburg on May 5, 1987.
Opening the program with Ligeti’s Lontano – followed by Saint-Saëns Violin Concerto Number 3 with Ruggiero Ricci, soloist and finishing with Schumann’s Symphony Number 3 “Rhenish”.
In 1947, Ruggiero Ricci was the first violinist to record the complete 24 Caprices, Op. 1, by Paganini, in their original form. Ricci’s first recording was on the Decca recording label. After his time in the military during World War 2, he uncovered many pieces by 19th-century composers that he would perform solo. He also performed the world premieres of pieces by many contemporary composers, including the violin concertos by Gottfried von Einem, Carlos Veerhoff and Alberto Ginastera.
Aside from performing over 6,000 concerts in 65 countries during his 70-year solo career, Ricci also made over 500 recordings, on every major label. He taught violin at Indiana University, the Juilliard School and the University of Michigan. He also taught at the University Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria. Ricci held master classes in the United States and Europe. He wrote Left Hand Technique, a pedagogical volume for violin published by G. Schirmer.
Ricci owned many precious instruments, including the Guarneri Del Gesù violin known as the ex-Bronisław Huberman of 1734, a Storioni, a Luiz Bellini, a Curtin & Alf, a David Bague and a couple of Regazzi. He played, on September 18, 1997, his fourth recording of the Paganini Caprices on Paganini’s own Guarneri, Il Cannone, on loan to him by the City of Genoa, Italy.
Ricci died of heart failure in August 2012 at his home in Palm Springs, California, aged 94.
In 1982, Günther Wand became chief conductor of the NDR Symphony Orchestra. With the latter ensemble, he was able to record the complete symphonies of Beethoven and Brahms as well as works by Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Debussy, Schubert and Schumann. He also remade Bruckner’s symphonies 3 to 9.
In January 1982, Wand conducted the BBC Symphony Orchestra for the first time, and was appointed principal guest conductor of the orchestra that same year. Wand was noted for demanding considerable rehearsal time, a minimum of 5 to 8 rehearsals, for his London concerts. On 9 September 1990 his UK Promenade Concert of Bruckner’s 5th Symphony with the BBC Symphony was recorded and subsequently released in 2011 on DVD by the BBC/ICA (ICAD 5049). For his first appearance with a US orchestra, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1989, he asked for and received 11 hours of rehearsal time. Wand subsequently recorded the Brahms Symphony No. 1, part of that first U.S. program, with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
The highlights of Wand’s late career were his annual guest appearances with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, which he conducted in Schubert’s “Unfinished” and “Great” symphonies (1995) and Bruckner’s Fifth (1996), Fourth (1998), Ninth (1998), Seventh (1999) and Eighth (2001) symphonies.
Pull up a chair and enjoy the concert. History to be savored and repeated. You can do that.
As you know, we’ve suspended indefinitely our ads in order to make Past Daily a better experience for you without all the distractions and pop-ups. Because of that, we’re relying more on your support through Patreon to keep us up and running every day. For as little as $5.00 a month you can make a huge difference as well as be able to download all of our posts for free (news, history, music). You’ll see a banner just below. Click on that and become a subscriber – it’s easy, painless and does a world of good.