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This 6CD set contains 100 tracks from the catalogues of EMI Records, EMI Classics and Virgin Classics of recordings by the London Symphony Orchestra under some of the world’s greatest conductors and with a number of famous soloists.

Further details of the programme are as follows:

The London Symphony Orchestra was created in 1904 as Britain’s first independent, self-governing orchestra and continues to this day as one of the finest orchestras in the world. It made its first recordings for HMV (the main predecessor of EMI Classics along with British Columbia) at Hayes, Middlesex, in 1913 by the technically very limited acoustic process and went on to record widely for both HMV and Columbia after electrical recording began in 1925.

This collection covers recordings made since the advent of stereo in around 1956, the technological advance that made it possible for the full range and colour of orchestral performances to be captured on record and faithfully reproduced in the home.

Among the conductors represented, the most widely recorded by EMI was André Previn, now Conductor Laureate of the orchestra. He was Principal Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra from 1968 to 1979 and presided over the orchestra during what have become known as the 'glamorous years'. Charismatic, youthful and engaging, he brought the London Symphony Orchestra to a wide audience through many appearances on TV, including his regular series André Previn's Music Night. The programme heard here includes EMI’s first digital recording made in 1979 of Debussy’s Images conducted by Previn.

Other popular London-based conductors heard here include Sir John Barbirolli, Sir Adrian Boult, Sir Colin Davis and Sir Charles Mackerras, while Aram Khachaturian, Krzysztof Penderecki and Sir William Walton are featured in landmark recordings of their own compositions. Guest conductors include Lamberto Gardelli, Eugen Jochum and Gennadi Rozhdestvensky.

The programme focuses mainly on symphonic repertoire, but there are extracts from other genres featuring famous soloists such as the cellist Steven Isserlis, the violinists Yehudi Menuhi and Dmitry Sitkovetsky, the pianist Michel Beroff and the mezzo-soprano Janet Baker.

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