Two for Tuesday: Arturo Toscanini

I’m hardly a great fan of classical music, and know little about it, I admit, but I was searching for a musician to feature today who was born on March 25, and discovered that there were two that I hadn’t thought of: Bela Bartok and today’s subject, Arturo Toscanini (1867-1957).

Toscanini was best known in the United States as the conductor of the NBC Symphony Orchestra, which he did from 1937 until his retirement in 1954. He conducts that orchestra in our two selections for today. The first is Rossini’s “William Tell Overture,” from that opera. This was filmed in 1952, when Toscanini was 85 years old. The second is “The Ride of the Valkyries,” from Richard Wagner’s opera Die Walküre, the second of the four operas in his “Ring” cycle. Both exhibit Toscanini’s flamboyant, intense style.

Happy birthday, Arturo Toscanini, your two for Tuesday, March 19, 2013.

(Note: This entry seems to have been butchered by the WordPress for iPhone application. This should fix it. So sorry!)