Otakar Jeremiáš & Karel Boleslav Jirák. Rare Ultraphon 78s

I’m very proud to present this gorgeous group of Czech 78s, built around the work of two contemporary conductor/composers: Otakar Jeremiáš (1892-1962), and Karel Boleslav Jirák (1891–1972). If they are known at all these days, it is through their recordings, and probably only to collectors able to dig deeply into the vaults of rare shellac! One such resource is the collection of my friend Mike Gartz, and it is through his generosity that I am able to share these rarities with you. I should mention that, although there is only one item conducted here by the better known Václav Smetáček, I am working on an Ultraphon set of the complete Dvořák Legends conducted by him.

Among the discoveries for me, as far as repertory presented, is that Smetáček led side of the somewhat salon-ish but beautiful Valse triste by Oskar Nedbal (also principal conductor of the Czech Philharmonic from 1896 to 1906 and a founder member of the Bohemian String Quartet, as violist), and the Josef Suk Meditation on the Saint Wenceslas Chorale, which also exists in a string quartet version.

One discographic oddity is that the Smetana Triumphal Symphony Scherzo presented here, simply substituted the same matrix used for Side 1 for the repeat of the “A” section of the work on Side 3!! At least there is a filler!

Dvořák: The Devil and Kate: Overture (Čert a Káča)
Otakar Jeremiáš, conductor
Czech Radio Orchestra (Orchestr Radiojournalu)
Esta M 5017 (matr. 3634/5)
Recorded 1941

Smetana: Prague Carnaval: Introduction and Polonaise)(Pražský karneval)
Otakar Jeremiáš, conductor
Prague Radio Orchestra (Symfonický orchestr Českého rozhlasu) and members of the Czech Philharmonic
Ultraphon 14316 (matr. T-40074/5)

Fibich: Spring, Op. 13 (Vesna)
Otakar Jeremiáš, conductor
Czech Radio Orchestra (Orchestr Radiojournalu)
Ultraphon E 10255/6 (matr. 16537/40-Z)
Recorded 1931

Smetana: Symphony in E Major, Op. 6, “Triumphal”: Scherzo
Otakar Jeremiáš, conductor
Prague Radio Orchestra (Symfonický orchestr Českého rozhlasu)
Ultraphon E 10257/8a (matr. 16541, 16542, 16541)
Recorded 1931

Dvořák: The Wild Dove, Op. 110 (Holoubek): Wedding Dance
Erich Kleiber, Conductor
Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Ultraphon E 10258b (filler to the Smetana Scherzo)
Recorded June 13, 1931, Berlin

Fibich: At Twilight (V podvečer), Op. 39: Lento (Poem)
Karel Boleslav Jirák, Conductor

Oskar Nedbal: Valse triste
Václav Smetáček, Conductor
FOK Orchestra (Symphonický orchestr hl.m.Prahy FOK)
Ultraphon F 12467 (above 2 works) (matr. 042884, 042992)
Recorded 1940

Smetana: The Fisherman (Rybář)
Janáček: Suite for Strings: Scherzo
Karel Boleslav Jirák, Conductor
Czech Radio Orchestra (Orchestr Radiojournalu)
Ultraphon G 12547 (matr. 043006 & 043009)
Recorded 1941


Suk: Meditation on the Saint Wenceslas Chorale, Op. 35a, for strings
Karel Boleslav Jirák, Conductor
Czech Radio Orchestra (Orchestr Radiojournalu)
Ultraphon G 12548 (matr. 043012/3)
Recorded 1941

 

This entry was posted in Jeremiáš, Jirák, Orchestral, Smetáček. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Otakar Jeremiáš & Karel Boleslav Jirák. Rare Ultraphon 78s

  1. LePanda says:

    @Fred. I have a dub of Chalabala's Supraphon lp of Khachaturian's Gayane Ballet, which I could post. Does that interest you at all?—Of Barney interest,please

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