Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (3 February 1809 – 4 November 1847) was a German composer, pianist, organist and conductor of the early Romantic period. The grandson of the philosopher Moses Mendelssohn, Felix Mendelssohn was born into a notable ethnically Jewish family, although he himself was brought up initially without religion, and later as a Lutheran Christian. He was recognised early as a musical prodigy, but his parents were cautious and did not seek to capitalise on his abilities. Like Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart before him, Mendelssohn was regarded as a child prodigy. He began taking piano lessons from his mother when he was six, and at seven was tutored by Marie Bigot in Paris. After the family moved to Berlin, all four Mendelssohn children studied piano with Ludwig Berger, who was himself a former student of Muzio Clementi. From at least May 1819 Felix (and his sister Fanny) studied counterpoint and composition with Carl Friedrich Zelter in Berlin. This was an important influence on his future career. Zelter had almost certainly been recommended as a teacher by his aunt Sarah Levy, who had been a pupil of W. F. Bach and a patron of C. P. E. Bach.

a) Scherzo from A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Felix Mendelssohn. Sergei Rachmaninoff, piano. Arranged by Rachmaninoff. Recorded January 8,1935.

Restoration by Bob Varney

Creative Commons license: Public Domain

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b) MENDELSSOHN: Concerto in E Minor for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 64

Joseph Szigeti, violin
The London Philharmonic Orchestra
Sir Thomas Beecham, conductor

I. Allegro molto appassionato

      http://www.classicistranieri.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/01.I.AllegroMoltoAppasionato.ogg

II. Andante

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III. Finale: Allegro molto vivace

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Columbia 78rpm Set MM-190
Recorded in 1939
Digital transfer by F. Reeder
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(higher bitrate – 6/13)

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c) MENDELSSOHN: Symphony No. 4 in A Major (“Italian”), Op. 90.
Hallé Orchestra.
Columbia 78rpm discs 68007-D – 68009-D (AX6054 – AX6059)
Recorded October 4, 1931.
Digital transfer by F. Reeder

      I.AllegroVivace
      Ii.AndanteConMoto
      Iii.ConMoltoModerato
      Iv.Finale_Salterello-presto

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d) MENDELSSOHN: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Cleveland Orchestra.
Columbia 78rpm Set MM-504. Recorded Dec. 28, 1941; Feb. 22, 1942.
Digital transfer by F. Reeder

      1Overture
      2Scherzo
      3Nocturne
      4Intermezzo
      5WeddingMarch

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