Biggest ever CD box sells 1.25 million in five weeks

Biggest ever CD box sells 1.25 million in five weeks


norman lebrecht

December 04, 2016

Figures just in from Universal show that ‘Mozart 225: The New Complete Edition’ has sold 1.25 million CDs globally in just 5 weeks since it was released – more than releases by Drake, Rihanna and David Bowie.

mozart 225

Weighing 12kg, ‘Mozart 225: The New Complete Edition’ is believed to be the biggest ever box set dedicated to a single composer. It features two books – a new biography by Professor Cliff Eisen and a work-by-work commentary from Mozart experts worldwide – plus a series of high-quality collector’s prints and a special app to access digital libretti for each of Mozart’s operas and sacred works.

UPDATE: Decca have clarified that the box shifted 6,250 sets, each containing 200 CDs.


  • Steve says:

    Don’t buy it. This set is # 4,301 on the Amazon sales charts in the US. # 8,172 in the U.K. Sales are likely in the hundreds.

  • Gary Carpenter says:

    I expect each of the CDs in the box counts as a single CD for statistical reasons.

    • Anon says:

      Quite, it has to be. There’s simply not time to manufacture the quantity otherwise; and it would have been a press story as soon as it hit 50k, then at intervals along the way, not to mention retailers shouting about it too.

      In any case, it is reported (discogs) as being a limited edition of 15,000 sets.

      [1.25m CDs for a box which contains c.200 discs represents sales of 6,250 sets (likely to be largely through independents for a product of this price, rather than Amazon, so the Amazon sales rank isn’t the best guide), so total sales are not yet troubling the warehouse given the quantity of “limited edition” which must remain.]

  • Will Duffay says:

    I’d love to have this. But I just don’t have £300 to spare… nor the shelf space. And, in truth, probably not the time to listen to it all, either.

  • Dominic Stafford Uglow says:

    All sold to school and university libraries, I should think.

    • Mark Fishman says:

      Not all, I’ve ordered one for myself. Many libraries don’t have the budget for this sort of thing anymore, and spend what they have buying the latest thrillers and mysteries for a decreasingly literate public. And you’re not really supposed to listen straight through. It’s a reference volume, like a desk encyclopedia.

  • Steve says:

    They sold 6,000 copies and change. Misleading story.

  • E.G. says:

    Gee, it’s almost as if classical music isn’t dying.

  • Alvaro says:

    Jajajjaa!!!! I’m crying. Have not laughed as hard in a WHILE.


    In that note, I just had 3,000 grains of Rice, and almost 20, billion molecules of air enter my Lungs on every breadth. Superhuman, they call me.

    If they had counted the OZ shipped, the number would’ve been BILLIONS.

    Missed PR strategy.

  • Sue says:

    Look at the photograph on the cover!! Sheesh. Avoid.

  • Saxon Broken says:

    Eh…they really have sold over one million CDs of Mozart. Given this is just one box set, I wonder how many Mozart CDs have been sold overall in the run-up to Christmas. And perhaps Mozart really is as popular as Rihanna if we count all the CDs sold.