Future Releases

In an effort to meet the needs of the Marston customer, we have chosen our upcoming releases with you in mind. We press only 1000 copies of most releases and do not repress so “when they’re gone, they’re gone.” To date, more than a 1/3 of our catalogue is out of print!

Listed below are a number of projects which are at various stages of completion. When a set is approaching release (within two months of becoming available), it will go on sale through the website. Your credit card will be charged when the order is placed, and the CDs will be shipped as soon as they are in our hands. "Pre-ordering" this way will guarantee that you are not left out in the cold! Check back regularly for updates on the status of future projects.

Herbert Janssen

Herbert Janssen: Portrait of a Mastersinger

56005-2 (6 CDs) | $72 ($54 to preferred customers)

The recordings of the baritone Herbert Janssen (1892–1965) have continued to delight listeners, beginning with their first appearance in the 1920s up until the present, where contemporary critics often revere them as standards of distinguished singing. The very individualistic beauty of his voice has long been held in the highest esteem by connoisseurs of both operatic and Lieder singing. His perfect Italianate legato, his breath control, and the “long-bowed” phrasing of his vocal art were greatly praised by critics and audiences throughout his thirty-year career, first in continental Europe and at Covent Garden, and latterly in the Americas.

His musically rich and varied career in Europe ended abruptly in 1937 when his outspoken opposition to Hitler’s regime led to his pursuit by the Gestapo and eventual escape and exile. Until then, he had given highly praised performances, not only of the Wagnerian roles for which he is chiefly remembered today, but of Mozart, Gluck, a great deal of Verdi and other Italian and French operas, as well as of contemporary works and even Russian repertoire.

Janssen’s Lieder singing on record has left memorable interpretations of songs by Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, Wolf, and Strauss which are still highly prized today.

The present collection includes all his surviving pre-war studio recordings of opera and operetta (except for the 1930 Columbia Tannhäuser); all of Janssen’s surviving 78 rpm Lieder recordings, including several previously unpublished items; and rare broadcast material that appears here together for the first time. The set includes liner notes by Iain Miller and Michael Aspinall, as well as a large selection of rare photos. As a portrait of one of the greatest baritones on records, this six-CD set of Herbert Janssen is the most complete yet to appear.

This set is fully funded.

Luboshutz and Nemenoff: The Art of Duo-Piano Playing

Luboshutz and Nemenoff: The Art of Duo-Piano Playing

54010-2 (4 CDs) | $54

It wasn’t until the end of the 1920s that professional duo-piano teams became a regular part of the concert scene with the emergence of Bartlett and Robertson, followed by Vronsky and Babin a bit later, and finally, in 1936, Luboshutz and Nemenoff.

Pierre Luboshutz (1890–1971) and Genia Nemenoff (1905–1989) were husband and wife. Both were from musical families of Russian and Jewish heritage and both ultimately settled in New York by way of Germany and France. Pierre had established a fine reputation in Russia as a member of the Luboshutz Trio, comprised of Pierre and his two more famous sisters. He also became known as a successful accompanist who toured extensively with a variety of distinguished soloists. Genia, however, languished in the States: it was the Depression, her family was abroad, and musical opportunities were limited. Performing together was a wonderful solution, if not without risk: duo-piano teams were not featured on the concert circuit. Yet Pierre and Genia were not only undaunted, they were well-connected: Pierre had many important musician-colleagues and friends and Pierre’s sister Lea introduced the duo to her manager, the indomitable Sol Hurok, who was intrigued and on board. “Luboshutz & Nemenoff’s” success came quickly, but it was their talent and chemistry that left an enduring legacy.

Marston’s 4-CD set will contain Luboshutz & Nemenoff’s RCA Victor recordings and selections from their LP discs; Mozart’s Sonata K. 448, Brahms’s Haydn Variations, Schumann’s Andante and Variations, Op. 46, Milhaud’s Scaramouche Suite, and many transcriptions and arrangements. The final disc of the set will include live performances of Bach and Mozart concerti with Serge Koussevitzky and the Boston Symphony Orchestra as well as Harl McDonald’s Two Piano Concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by the composer. Notes are written by Thomas Wolf, the grandson of Lea Luboshutz and the great nephew of Pierre and Genia. Thomas’s recollections of the time spent with his great aunt and uncle provide a unique glimpse into the people who comprised one of the greatest of piano duos.

This set is fully funded.

Marian Anderson

Marian Anderson

Complete European recordings and selected broadcasts 1929-1953

55004-2 (5 CDs) | $72 ($54 to preferred customers)

Marian Anderson (1897–1993) was an American contralto known for her recitals of opera, spirituals, and Lieder as well as her achievements in eroding the color barrier in arts and culture. She was a recipient a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award as well as the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal. She sang at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1939 in the now-famous response to being shut out of Constitution Hall by the DAR, performed at the March on Washington in 1963, and was the first black person to sing at the Metropolitan Opera (1955) in New York in her only operatic role on stage. While a towering figure in the civil rights movement, it was Marian Anderson’s velvety and vibrant contralto voice that opened the doors for herself and others.

This five-CD set gathers together for the first time all of Marian Anderson’s European recordings made by the Gramophone Company, Artiphon, and the Soviet Gramplastrest, most of which have never been available on any compact disc reissues. The set also includes all of Anderson’s appearances on the Magic Key radio program, 1936-1938, and selected arias, songs, and spirituals, taken from her appearances on the Telephone Hour between 1942 and 1953. The set concludes with a 1950 recital given in Montevideo. The set also includes numerous photos with liner notes by Jeffery McMillan, author and public relations director at San Francisco Opera, and Mark Burford, R. P. Wollenberg professor of music at Reed College, author of Mahalia Jackson and the Black Gospel Field, and editor of The Mahalia Jackson Reader.

Our sponsorship goal is $13,000, the cost to remaster and manufacture a five-CD set.

Celestina Boninsegna (Norma)

The Complete Celestina Boninsegna

55003-2 (5 CDs) | $72 ($54 to preferred customers)

Celestina Boninsegna (1877–1947) was one of the most prolifically-recorded sopranos of the early twentieth century. Yet it was not her stage career which convinced recording executives to produce her records, but her “phonogenic” voice that created the demand. Boninsegna’s recordings are stunning, making her one of the most collectible sopranos of her time. She managed to overcome the limitations of the acoustic recording studio and leave us records that have some of the presence of live recordings from the stage. According to Fred Gaisberg, the impresario for the Gramophone Company, Boninsegna’s “voice was so smooth and velvety and of such even registers that recording was no effort; the results obtained were always thoroughly musical and therefore gave intense pleasure. Those harsh places expected in any record by a dramatic soprano were conspicuous by their absence.”

Over the past fifty years there have been no comprehensive LP or CD reissues of Boninsegna’s records. We now pay homage to Boninsegna by reissuing all of her recordings in this five-CD set, which will include several extremely rare photos, complete discographic information, and an informative essay by Michael Aspinall on her career and recordings.

Our sponsorship goal is $12,500, the cost to remaster and manufacture a five-CD set.

Landmarks of Recorded Pianism, Vol. 3

Landmarks of Recorded Pianism, Vol. 3

52076-2 (2 CDs) | $36

Marston Records’s next issue in the Landmarks of Recorded Pianism series will continue to explore the question “What is a landmark piano recording?” In Volume Three our choices will again be presented, with an emphasis on recordings that have never been issued or reissued, and which seem to the producers (Ward Marston and Gregor Benko) to merit the attention of music lovers, scholars, and collectors because of their intrinsic musical and historic importance, not their rarity. This two-CD set will contain a mixture of piano solo and concerted works. Among the latter will be a live performance of the Schumann Concerto with the pupil of Clara Schumann, Adelina de Lara, plus a recently discovered live performance of the Chopin F minor Concerto with Jan Smeterlin and the Boston Symphony conducted by Serge Koussevitzky, as well as a radio broadcast performance of an abridged first movement of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto with Simon Barere. Rare solo piano recordings taken from early discs and broadcasts will complete the set. Many of the recordings that will be presented are indeed great rarities, some completely unknown before this. Volumes One and Two in the series have proved controversial, which is not a bad thing especially when reviewers completely disagree on which inclusions are the best and worst of the set. Having said this, the feedback from our clientele has been uniformly enthusiastic, so onward to Volume Three. 

Our sponsorship goal is $5,000, the cost to remaster and manufacture a two-CD set.

The Works of Ernest Reyer and Édouard Lalo

The Works of Ernest Reyer and Édouard Lalo

53019-2 (3 CDs) | $54 ($36 to preferred customers)

At the turn of the 20th century, Ernest Reyer and Édouard Lalo had experienced a certain degree of fame. Reyer’s opera Sigurd was still active in the repertory of many French opera houses including the Paris Opera, and although less popular, Maître Wolfram, La statue, and Salammbô were performed and also occasionally recorded. In the early years of recording, the most popular arias from Sigurd became staples of record company catalogs especially with the tenor arias being recorded by the likes of Scaramberg, Affre, Lafitte, Franz, and Vezzani.

Édouard Lalo, who today is best known for his Symphonie Espagnole for violin and orchestra, composed one opera that was immensely popular during the last decade of the nineteenth century and the first three decades of the twentieth: Le roi d’Ys. The “Aubade” from Act 3, “Vainement, ma bien aimée” was one of the most popular and ubiquitously recorded of all French tenor arias, ranking with the flower song from Carmen and “Plus blanche” from Les Huguenots.

This set devoted to Reyer and Lalo will feature at least one recording of each excerpt that was recorded between 1902 and 1930 and will feature approximately 35 singers. The booklet will contain: essays on the life and works of these two composers by Vincent Giroud; plot summaries of their operas; and short biographical sketches of the singers.

Richard Wagner: Parsifal (New York City, 14 April 1938 featuring Kirsten Flagstaff and Lauritz Melchior)

Richard Wagner: Parsifal

New York City, 15 April 1938
featuring Kirsten Flagstad and Lauritz Melchior

54008-2 (4 CDs) | $54

Among all of the great performances of Wagner’s final opera, this performance of Parsifal from the stage of the Met has been for years one of the holy grails for Wagner enthusiasts, for until now, this broadcast had never been issued in its complete form. It represents the only time that Parsifal with the great Wagnerian duo, Kirsten Flagstad and Lauritz Melchior, was broadcast and preserved. It has none of the customary cuts that afflict other Wagner performances from this era with all cast members in excellent voice. The transfers were made from original discs recorded off the air by a New York recording studio, and we are proud to present this important performance for the first time. The two other principals are Friedrich Schorr and Emanuel List. During this time, the Metropolitan’s Wagner opera performances were conducted by Austrian conductor, Artur Bodanzky. But on this Good Friday, because of ill health, his doctors insisted that he conduct only the first and third acts; act 2 is ably conducted by his then assistant, Erich Leinsdorf.

Lawrence Tibbett

Lawrence Tibbett

The Complete Victor Recordings and Selected Broadcasts

TBA $120 ($85 to preferred customers)

Few (if any?) opera singers have also been Academy Award nominees, let alone for Best Actor.  But then again, there is only one Lawrence Tibbett (1896–1960). Described as dashing, Tibbett had a career as a movie actor, radio show personality and host, with sponsors such as Packard, Firestone, and Chesterfield. He was also one of the first “crossover” artists singing Gershwin, Kern, and Porter, and was a staple at the Met. A cogent and articulate advocate for artistic causes (rare in his day), he founded the American Guild of Musical Artists with Jascha Heifetz. But first and foremost, Lawrence Tibbett was an opera singer and one of the greatest baritones of all time.

Lawrence Tibbett signed his first contract with the Metropolitan Opera at age twenty-six and over the years built a hugely successful career. His voice was large, deep, and dark-timbred. His dynamic range (in his prime) ranged from forceful fortes to delicate pianissimos. Falstaff’s Ford was his breakthrough role and he was an outstanding Simon Boccanegra, Iago, Scarpia, and Escamillo. Tibbett was the consummate musician with an incredible stage presence. Sadly, arthritis and alcohol took its toll and Tibbett died from a fall in his apartment at age sixty-three.

Tibbett recorded exclusively for RCA Victor between 1925 and 1940, making over one hundred sides. Marston Records is pleased to present the complete Victor recordings of Tibbett for the first time. In addition, this set will include recordings made for his films, Metropolitan and Under your Spell, as well as selections from his Packard and Chesterfield radio broadcasts never before available on compact disc. The booklet will contain many rare photos and a comprehensive essay by author and critic Conrad Osborne on Tibbett’s life, career, and recorded legacy.

Our sponsorship goal is $18,000, the cost to remaster and manufacture an eight- or nine-CD set as well as the cost to secure the rights for a portion of the recorded music. We believe that this set will be one of our most important contributions to preserving our musical past, similar in significance to our complete Feodor Chaliapin and John McCormack series. We are hopeful that our loyal and generous supporters will assist us in making the complete Lawrence Tibbett a reality.