O Fortuna, Cast a Vote For Which Carmina Burana You Want to Hear

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Carl Orff Carl Orff

Today is the birthday of composer Carl Orff (1895-1982), so for this week's Showdown we offered three great performances of his most famous work: Carmina Burana. We asked you to choose from a classic recording by Eugen Jochum, a more modern favorite from Riccardo Muti, and a new reading by Kristjian Jarvi on one of our Albums of the Week.

You picked the performance by the Philharmonia Orchestra and Chorus under the direction of Riccardo Muti featuring soprano Arleen Auger, tenor John van Kesteren, baritone Jonathan Summers and the Southend Boys' Choir. We played it today at noon.


Comments [19]

D Tremper from Maplewood, NJ

Leave it to Jeff Spurgeon to say we had choices to vote on from the various "Carminas Burana" recordings. I marvel at his wit and clever quips. (Though maybe it should not be Anglicized and should rather be Carminae Burana). In any event, thanks for your total engagement, Jeff, with each announcement you make.

Jul. 11 2013 06:55 PM
Richard W. from UES

I've pretty much stopped listening to WQXR during the day because of what's happened to the programming here. It's somewhat better in the evenings - Terrance McKnight picks more interesting pieces from a wider pool and there you might even find a (gasp!) 21st century work - i.e. music of our own time! But the day is mainly generic pablum to "soothe" people. It's programming by fear as I see it - they don't want to risk offending any particular group so they play it as safe as possible. Hence Carmina, the Four Seasons, Dvorak's Ninth, etc.

Jul. 11 2013 08:29 AM
tom from Long Island City

Forgot to say in previous post that for me Carmina Burana is absolutley epic.

Jul. 10 2013 09:54 PM
MARIO from Quertetaro, Mexico

Carmina Burana is an extraordinary work , for me is a pity to see how the performances have been degradated to stupid theatrical events.
First time I hear this work was in the National Beauty Arts Theater, Mexico City, and it was amazing , something realy innovative

Jul. 10 2013 09:10 PM
Tom from Long Island City

QXR needs to be bought again and turned over to someone who understands Classical Music listeners' tastes and does away with the sad generic programming they hide behind. Someone who will start programming with more variety than they do now. Station sometimes is like a new startup that's just discovered Classical Music but doesn't really know how to find all the gems and treasures that are out there, past and present.
Stop being safe, stop being generic. Mix it up. Make the effort.

Jul. 10 2013 09:04 PM
Bob from Switzerland

Just wanted to mention that I've never actually liked Carmina Burana, nor understood its great popularity. Much too aggressive music for my taste.

Jul. 10 2013 01:33 PM
Gev Sweeney from Ocean Grove, New Jersey

I voted for Jarvi, but this ... the Muti ... Like one of the earlier posters, I too am working at home. And this ... is a most fabulous soundtrack. Thank you!

Jul. 10 2013 12:30 PM
Bob Welter from Brooklyn

Working from home, with Carmina Burana...Wonderful!

Jul. 10 2013 12:20 PM
Ashlynn from North Jersey

I absolutely adore Carmina Burana. Really. But every time I hear O Fortuna, now all I can is laugh because one of my co-workers sent me this:

Jul. 10 2013 12:05 PM
Carol Luparella from Elmwood Park, NJ

How is it that you manage to remember the birthday of Carl Orff today and yet completely ignore the birthday of Gustav Mahler on July 7? You did not play one note of his music that day. I guess Mahler doesn't fit in with your Top 40 format.

Jul. 10 2013 10:30 AM
Karen Langro

This is such beautiful and such powerful piece of music! It grabs your attention and does not let go it is is over!

Jul. 10 2013 10:05 AM
concetta nardone from Nassau

QXR seems to rely too often on the "greatest hits" list. How about some adventurist selections? QXR doesn't realize that the listeners are more sophisticated and would appreciate some new "stuff" to choose from.

Jul. 10 2013 09:51 AM

Why is there no way to click on a comparative "taste" of each of the three before choosing? Are you really so elitist as to assume that I am intimately familiar with all three already, and so can immediately pick a favorite?

Jul. 10 2013 09:43 AM
cathy from Orangevale

WQXR has an excellent mix of the old and new. I listen online 24/7 switching between several classical stations and WQXR is one of the best as far as variety, they play a lot of stuff that's not 'mainstream'. What may be repetitive to some listeners might be new to someone just getting a taste of classical music.

Jul. 10 2013 09:42 AM
Christopher St Clair from Brooklyn

I usually opt for something new, in an effort to keep myself reasonably cultured, but in this case I've chosen Jochum, whose reading of the Carmina I know by heart. It isn't necessarily the greatest reading, but I am an unconditional fan of Gundula Janowitz. First heard her famous "white" voice in Karajan's recording of the Ring, and was instantly smitten - never have I been so moved by Sieglinde. Plus you get Fischer-Dieskau (name sounds vaguely familiar) thrown in as a bonus - how can one resist?

Jul. 10 2013 09:17 AM
esquared from NYC

I've always liked the techno/trance remix of O Fortuna http://youtu.be/s5IQMiKv1L4.

Jul. 10 2013 08:54 AM
Bernie Hughes from Bridgewater, N.H.

I'm always ready for a new musical venture.

Jul. 10 2013 08:29 AM
Bernie from UWS

Steve - agreed. When WQXR was acquired by NY Public Radio I thought we were going to be seeing more adventurous, exploratory programming in keeping with the Public Radio model. Instead, they've gone towards a Top 40 approach, giving people mainly the "hits" rather than introducing them to new and unexpected repertoire. I think it's symptomatic of the corporatization of Public Radio as a whole that we have this state of affairs. I mean, Carmina Burana? I think I heard I heard "Spring" from Vivaldi's Four Seasons yesterday too. Who do they take us for?

Jul. 10 2013 07:43 AM
Steve from Bronx

Since Carmina Burana (the very occasional Catulli... aside) is virtually the ONLY piece by Orff we get to hear, I'd prefer to have you celebrate his birthday with some rarely heard pieces. Sadly, as when last week you chose to play Joplin's overly familiar "The Entertainer" rather than any of his dozens of other wonderful rags, WQXR seems wedded to the safe and popular. I could cite too, too many other examples of this playlist policy of yours.... an over-reliance on Dvorak's op. 96 quartet in the stead of his many other brilliant works in the genre being just one.

Jul. 10 2013 06:02 AM

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