Decca celebrates one of the world's most prolific conductor-orchestra partnerships with a 6LP box set marking both the 20th Anniversary of the passing of Sir Georg Solti and the 125th Anniversary of the founding of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.
Sir Georg Solti was one of the twentieth century's most brilliant conductors and a leading figure of musical culture in Europe and the US. He studied piano, composition and conducting with Bartók, Dohnányi, Kodály and Weiner, made his concert debut as a pianist, and in 1937, Toscanini selected him as his assistant at the Salzburg Festival. He made his first recordings for Decca in 1947 and continued as an exclusive Decca artist for over half a century leaving a vast legacy of over 250 great recordings – including 45 complete operas.
Solti's remarkable partnership with the CSO began in 1954, when Solti first led the Orchestra at the Ravinia Festival. He returned to Chicago for guest engagements with the Lyric Opera in 1956, made his Chicago Orchestra Hall debut on December 9, 1965, and his first concerts as Music Director were in September 1969. Solti served as Music Director for 22 years (1969-1991) and Music Director Laureate for a further 7 years until his passing (1991-1997) and is credited with greatly extending and building the Orchestra's reputation worldwide – starting in 1971 with its first foreign tour.
Solti's recordings garnered many international honors including 33 Grammy awards (24 which were made with the CSO) – more than any other recording artist to this day – including a Lifetime Achievement Award and a Trustees Award. Highlights include: Wagner's Die Meistersinger, the complete Beethoven Symphony Cycle, Mahler's Symphonies 2, 7, 8 & 9, the Bach Mass in B minor, and Berlioz' La Damnation de Faust.