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27 October 2023

A few weeks ago we published the facsimile of a Philharmonia programme, that of the concert of April 24, 1952.

Let’s stay in England for a rarer document: the facsimile of the programme of a concert given by Furtwängler with the London Philharmonic, and not in a prestigious venue like the Royal Albert Hall, but in the suburbs of London, at Watford Town Hall. And there is nothing routine about the poster, which features in particular a work by Mahler that was still little known in Great Britain, and an artist on the verge of making a career there, Eugenia Zareska.

Roger Smithson presents all the details.

Ask for the programme!

20 October 2023


The topic has been mentioned on several occasions: the SWF will soon (first weeks of November) be providing its members with a new way of enjoying performances of Furtwängler produced by the association: streaming.

Let’s remember that streaming consists of listening to audio files live and uninterrupted, without having to import them, a bit like on a radio, except that you choose your own programme from the many on offer; and what is in high definition remains so. So this is a world away from listening to mp3 files on YouTube!

Of course, this service will only be available to SWF members, via the SWF website, with an annual subscription fee of €10.

Initially, the digital “warehouse” will include:
– the 12 SWF Dxx albums, i.e. the digital packs currently available for download;
– a number of CDs, including the 1954 Paris concert, the 1943 Meistersinger, Bruckner’s 9th

We will gradually add our own extensive catalogue, as well as a number of releases from the Wilhelm Furtwängler Gesellschaft, i.e. produced by our German counterpart.

It should be noted that:
– We have taken into account those who want to listen to these files on their smartphone;
– No booklet is included with these playlists, as booklets are only available as downloads;
– You will be able to access these audio files either by targeting a specific work or by listening to an entire album. For example, if you ask to listen to Brahms’s Haydn Variations, you will be given access (once everything is online) to all the versions available from the SWF: VPO 1943, Berlin 1943, BPO 1950, Hamburg 1951, Paris 1954… with a link to the complete original album concerned. The choice is yours.

This will in no way stop the SWF from carrying on its work on structured editorial projects, which will be available in the future for both downloading and streaming.

11 October 2023

Rarely do we get the chance to entertain our members with Furtwängler as the subject. Let’s make the most of it.

In 1927, The Paris Times, a Parisian daily, but English-language and American-inspired, published an article entitled “The Man of the Day” featuring Furtwängler. If it weren’t for his photo, you might think it was a case of mistaken identity… But no, it was our conductor. Unfortunately, the article is not signed. What a shame! We’d have liked to know the author of such blunders…

Click here to enjoy.