Solti as Teacher.


Georg Solti: In rehearsals and performance

As a young conductor, Hungarian-born Georg Solti was an assistant to Arturo Toscanini at the Salzburg Festival during the early 1930’s. His role was to prepare the singers, chorus, and orchestra before the arrival of Toscanini for the main rehearsals.

On one occasion, Toscanini entered the rehearsal space, and Solti heard him say “Bene”, implying his satisfaction (“good” in Italian). Solti was overjoyed….

Solti’s parents convinced their son that the political situation was getting too dangerous in Europe, and so he left in the later part of the 1930’s. Many years later, the village where Mr. Solti was born planted a tree in memory of his parents who did not survive the Holocaust.

On this CD, we get to understand Solti’s excellence: You can see him insist on rhythmic accuracy. Eighth notes must be accurate, and not sloppy. And dynamics make the difference between ordinary performances and passionate ones.


One slight disadvantage of this DVD may be that Solti’s instructions in his Hungarian-accented German are not translated into English. However, if you know the music, you can hear how the orchestra responds and improves.

At the beginning, the “Suedfunk Sinfinieorchester” comes across as a somewhat mediocre orchestra. Once the rehearsals are completed, the concert itself proves what an amazing coach and director Georg Solti really was.

Here is a sample from Maestro Solti “In Rehearsal & Performance”:


And here he is in a rehearsal one-one with soprano Kiri Te Kanawa, as she prepares to sing “September” from Vier Letzte Lieder by Richard Strauss, with Solti conducting. watch carefully, you’ll see the same attention to accuracy and detail as with a large orchestra:


Tags: Georg Solti, Rehearsal, Suedfunk Sinfinieorchester, Kiri Te Kanawa, Richard Strauss, Richard Wagner