Klemperer inquisitor has died

The BBC has reported the death, age 99, of th polymath John Freeman who, in 1961, conducted an immortal television interview with the indomitable Otto Klemperer. If you’ve never watched it before, prepare to be amazed.


klemperer face to face

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  • At 23:50, the work by Hindemith of which Klemperer can’t remember the title, but which he says he recorded in London, is Nobilissima Visione (EMI, 1954). However, which conductor does he mention at 25:24? I cannot make out the name because of Klemperer’s strong accent.

  • Thank you so much for this, Norman. As a singer in the Philharmonia Chorus for some years I benefited immensely from his influence.

  • Thank you…..how wonderful to see, hear, and “feel” the extraordinary human who gave such life and warmth to the music I love, especially Beethoven, and most especially my very first opera recording, “Fidelio”, which changed my life!

  • An interview style we simply don’t see today, completly self-effacing interlocutor, everything focused on the subject. I only wish he’d explored the distinction between being a moralist in music (Walter) vs. Immoralist.
    I’d just finished playing Klemperer’s VSO recording of the Beethoven Missa. This was the perfect aperatif.

  • Was this the only episode of that fascinating series that did not use the Berlioz Francs Juges overture at the beginning and end?

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