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!

Don’t be left out in the cold! If you Pre-order any release, you will be guaranteed a copy. If there is a title that is of interest, please email us to reserve your copy now.

The Complete Josef Hofmann: vol. 9

The Complete Josef Hofmann: vol. 9

52058-2 (2 CDs) | $36

The culmination of over a decade of releases, Marston is issuing the final volume of the complete Josef Hofmann recordings. Hofmann combined unparalleled virtuosity with emotion, understanding, and spontaneity to create some of the finest piano playing ever recorded. This set begins with newly mastered transfers of the three wax cylinders from 1896, originally released on our three-CD set The Dawn of Recording. Using new pitch stabilization technology, we have been able to improve, albeit slightly, the sonic reproduction of the cylinders recorded in Russia by the twenty year-old Hofmann, shortly following the death of his teacher, Anton Rubinstein. Included on this final volume are several alternative takes of Columbia and Brunswick recordings not offered on earlier volumes, the soundtrack of the film produced by the Bell Telephone Company that was shown in movie theaters to promote their radio program, “The Telephone Hour”, as well as a recently discovered, superior-sounding, source for the Cadillac Hour program from 1936, in which Hofmann gives a spectacular performance of Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata”. We issued this broadcast on volume six, but we want to make sure that Hofmann enthusiasts have the opportunity to own this better-sounding source. We have waited several years to produce this set, hoping to be able to discover further broadcast recordings of Hofmann in the interim (notes for the set will include a listing of Hofmann broadcasts which we know were recorded). As none of the eagerly-sought recordings have appeared, we are going ahead with some non-musical recordings concerning Hofmann. Half of the set will feature a collection of recorded interviews, conducted mostly by Gregor Benko. In these, which date back to the 1970s, we hear fascinating commentary by Rudolph Ganz, Jorge Bolet, Charles Rosen, Gian-Carlo Menotti, Glenn Gould, Constance Keene, Nella Rubinstein, Ruth Steinway, and Hofmann’s son, Anton, speaking candidly about  Hofmann the pianist and Hofmann the man. One interview, with a minor pianist whose name will be unfamiliar to most, Thadeus Sadlowski, is both fascinating and funny (while most of them are anything but funny.) Choosing these interviews from the large number that Gregor Benko collected and recorded, then editing them for content, has taken hundreds of hours of intense work, and we feel that they make a fitting finale to the complete Josef Hofmann CD series. We will never cease our search for additional Hofmann recordings, which if discovered, we will make every effort to publish.

Feodor Chaliapin: The Complete Recordings

Feodor Chaliapin: The Complete Recordings

51301-2 (13 CDs) | “$175 ($130 to preferred customers)

Feodor Chaliapin (1873-1938) (bass) was in the opinion of many the greatest singing actor of the 20th century. Like Enrico Caruso, the name Chaliapin continued to be a household word long after his death. A case in point is that the Sobranie tobacco company continued to market their "Chaliapin" cigarettes into the 1970s. Producing a Chaliapin set has long been a desire of Marston, yet due to the size of the compilation, the production costs, and the time involved, this project has been pushed to the back burner time and time again. This year with the financial assistance of some of our generous supporters, we are able to announce that at the beginning of next year we will release a thirteen-CD set containing every known recording of Feodor Chaliapin numbering well into the two hundreds. This set will contain a substantial number of previously unpublished alternative takes, as well as all extant sides from the live performances at Covent Garden and the Royal Albert Hall that were recorded by His Master's Voice in 1926 through 1928. The booklet accompanying the set will include essays on Chaliapin and his records by Michael Scott and Michael Aspinall and a reprint of an essay by the great accompanist, Ivor Newton. The price of the set is $130 for preferred customers, $175 for single orders.

Landmarks of Recorded Pianism

52073-2 (2 CDs) | $36

This release features a collection of what might be called piano orphans: commercial and non-commercial recordings of great pianists that simply have never found their way onto compact disc. Among these treasures are 15 minutes of Dinu Lipatti playing Scarlatti and Brahms that have only recently surfaced; an unpublished disc of Alfred Cortot playing the “Russian Dance” from Petroushka; an unpublished recording of Emil von Sauer playing “Liebestraum;” and previously unpublished excerpts of the Tchaikovsky first piano concerto played by Vladimir Horowitz with the Philadelphia Orchestra, recorded during a 1932 concert conducted by Fritz Reiner and recorded as an experiment by the Bell Telephone Laboratory. This is Horowitz's earliest known concert performance, is in amazing sound for that time, and it must be heard to be believed. It is unfortunate that the entire concerto was not recorded, but hearing these excerpts will be a revelation for Horowitz fans. We feel certain that piano enthusiasts worldwide will treasure this 2-CD set as nothing like it has been heard since Gregor Benko produced his acclaimed Landmarks of Recorded Pianism LP almost 40 years ago.

British Tenors of the 78 Era (Gervase Elwes)

British Tenors of the 78 Era: A Forgotten School of Singing

53020-2 (3 CDs) | $54

There was a style of tenor singing in the early days of recording that was peculiarly British. It began we can suppose with tenors of the 18th and 19th centuries who did not record, such as Charles Dibdin, John Braham, and Sims Reeves, and carried on more or less until the end of the 78rpm era when the model for singing tenor in Britain became Peter Pears, whose singing was not really like any of his predecessors. This CD set will celebrate the historic and wonderful recordings made by those earlier tenors. They sound old-fashioned because no one singing today sounds like them. Although some of them recorded songs and arias in foreign languages, we will intentionally limit this set to English songs, operatic arias, and oratorio arias. As Shaw wrote in 1891 in his review of the farewell concert of Sims Reeves, the public was losing the greatest tenor in England and perhaps the greatest tenor in the world. This set is intended to allow us to imagine what a Sims Reeves concert might have been like, and will include approximately twenty-five tenors such as Heddle Nash, Edward Lloyd, Gervase Elwes, Tudor Davies, Walter Widdop, John Coates, and Walter Hyde, among others.


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 19th century and the first three decades of the 20th: 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.

Jean Lassalle

Nineteenth Century French-Baritones

Jean Lassalle, Léon Melchissédec, Maurice Renaud, and Jean Baptist Faure

52069-2 (2 CDs) | $36

Some CD compilations are known because of the rarity of the recordings, while others are known for the quality of singing; this compilation contains some of the rarest recordings known to collectors, and displays incredible singing as well. Jean Lassalle was born in 1847 and died in 1909, not long after the dawn of recording. His career was stellar: he was one of the greatest luminaries of the Paris Opéra; he was a frequent guest in London; and was an honored member of the Metropolitan Opera. His expressive voice displayed mastery of technique, and although his recordings were made when he was in his late 50s, there is still much in the way of style and technique that can be heard. His first recordings were Pathé cylinders dating from about 1902, followed by discs for Odeon and Pantophone in 1904 and 1905. This set will include some 23 of these incredibly rare recordings from the operatic and song repertory. Léon Melchissédec was born in 1843 and died in 1925. He was successful at the Opéra-Comique, the Théâtre Lyrique, and the Paris Opéra. His voice was polished and expressive. His first record was an 1899 seven-inch Berliner of the drum major’s aria from Thomas’s Le Caid, which although highly abridged, shows his voice and technique in remarkable condition. Besides this extremely rare disc, this CD compilation will contain a group of Pathé cylinders, four Zonophone discs, and six sides recorded for the APGA label when Melchissédec was 65 years old. Jean Baptist Faure was born in 1830 and died in 1914. In addition to composing a number of classical songs, which gained immense popularity, Faure was a celebrated baritone who created many important roles including Nélusko (Meyerbeer’s L'Africaine), Rodrigue (Verdi’s Don Carlos), and Thomas’s Hamlet. There exist two non-commercial wax cylinders from about 1905, thought possibly to be sung by Faure, though this is only a supposition. On these cylinders, one hears a baritone of advanced years whose voice yet evinces skill and authority. It should be mentioned that this set will also include the seven Pathé recordings by Maurice Renaud which we were unable to fit on to our Renaud compilation released in 1998.