Toscanini’s in pyjamas

It’s the maestro’s birthday today (b. 1867).

He’s taking it easy at sea, en route to South America with the NBC orchestra.


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  • For me the greatest of maestros judging from his recordings. I’ve heard his remarkable rehearsals, with all that shouting. The results justify bad behaviour for me. We as listeners owe a lot for the maestros who shake up those players who are primarily there to raise up a family and retire with a good pension.

    • Though it should be kept in mind the explosions were rare. I’ve heard hours of rehearsal with nary a cross word. However, Robert Shaw told a story of a Toscanini recording session which ended 15 minutes in with a tantrum. Shaw was there when that session was played back to Toscanini complete with his rant. He was abashed, at first denied it was him. “No, that’s you Maestro.” “Oh no, no, I shouldn’t have done that. Call the orchestra together, I must apologize.” The next (expensive even then) 2 1/2 hour recording session was arranged. Toscanini came in and apologized to the orchestra for his outburst. Then he left. No recording! Maybe RCA could have issued the apology.

      • Awww . . . so he was an old softie after all!
        Thanks for straightening out generations of history to the contrary. LOL

  • I love recordings from the 50-70s,and Toscanini is one of my favorite conducters.
    He is a regular guest in my cd-player.

  • Toscanini is the ONLY conductor we might want to see in his pyjamas. Please spare us the horror of any others.

  • Well now we have to see the photo of Carlos Kleiber in his swim trunks on the beach. (With Birgit Nilsson.)

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