Arturo Toscanini


California chef Alice Waters established her first Edible Schoolyard in 1995 so that Berkeley children could cook and eat vegetables cultivated in gardening classes. Now New York’s first Edible Schoolyard has taken root, supplementing 1/2 acre of asphalt at Public School 216 Arturo Toscanini in Brooklyn.

Firm: WorkAC. Project: Edible Schoolyard. Location: Brooklyn, New York. Photography by Iwan Baan.

Walt Disney himself related the story of a chance meeting with Leopold Stokowski at Chasen’s. They agreed to have dinner together. As they talked, Disney told of his plans to do “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” and other possible projects using classical music with animation. Disney said that he was stunned when Stokowski, then one of the two most famous conductors in the country (the other being Arturo Toscanini), responded by saying, “I would like to conduct that for you.” It was an offer he couldn’t pass up.

Famed conductor, Arturo Toscanini, conducting an Italian military band during World War I.  As the battle heated up, he moved the band closer and closer to the fight.  He wanted the Italian troops to hear the music and boost their courage.

I love Toscanini quotes.  A few favorites:

"Wagner was right.  Verdi was right.  They were both right!”

Known as a slave to the printed score and authenticity, Toscanini was once asked why he re-orchestrated a few passages of a Schumann symphony.  His reply:  “If it makes the score sound, is good!”

About Richard Strauss, who Toscanini believed had cooperated with the Nazis:  “To Strauss, the composer, I take off my hat.  To Strauss, the man, I put my hat back on.”


Vladimir Horowitz and Family:

  1. Horowitz with his wife, Wanda Toscanini-Horowitz.
  2. Horowitz’s father-in-law Arturo Toscanini with Wanda, Vladimir, and their daughter Sonia Horowitz.
  3. Toscanini and Sonia.
  4. Toscanini and Sonia.
  5. Toscanini and Sonia arguing.
  6. Wanda and Vladimir and their pet poodles (Pippa and Pippo I think).
  7. Horowitz with poodle (Pippo?) at the piano.
  8. Horowitz with wife (who had become his manager, for all intents and purposes) on stage.
  9. Vladimir and Wanda Horowitz. 

Arturo Toscanini NBC Symphony Orchestra 1944
Verdi’s La Forza Del Destino

Playbill for the world premiere of Turandot
La Scala, Milan, 25 April 1926
Milan: Montorfano & Valcarenghi, 1926
101.6 x 73.7 cm
James Fuld Collection

Puccini began work on Turandot in 1920 and had completed all but the final duet between Calaf and the princess when he left for Brussels early in November 1924 for radium treatments for throat cancer. Though he brought his sketches for the final scene with him, he died of cardiac arrest on the 29th, leaving the work unfinished. Using Puccini’s sketches, composer Franco Alfano devised an ending in time for the premiere. Toscanini, however, who was conducting, put down his baton where Puccini’s music ended, saying, “Here the opera ends because at this point the Maestro died.”


Above:  Toscanini rehearsal Brahms Sinfonia n2 - NBC - 1943 (via: goodmanmusica on youtube)

Artemis:  Toscanini tantrum.  :-/  

Above:  Another tantrum  :-/  

Dashboard click box above for second video.  Arturo Toscanini, November 26, 1953 rehearsal with the NBC Symphony Orchestra (via: myos336 on youtube)


Labor Day blog: Arturo Toscanini conducts "The Internationale"

It’s almost 2012 – another gottverdammt election year – and I don’t know if I’ll live through it. The political commercials alone will probably give me an ulcer, if not a coronary.


So, for Labor Day, here’s something a little closer to my core beliefs: the old international workers’ anthem, the “Internationale.” conducted by Arturo Toscanini. I find it soothing.


Arise, ye victims of oppression!


And happy Labor Day.



83 years ago, Arturo Toscanini, one of the greatest composers of all time, was injured by a group of fascists for refusing to play their anthem Giovinezza.

He was conducting a memorial concert for Italian composer Giuseppe Martucci, at the Teatro Comunale in Bologna. When he was ordered to begin by playing Giovinezza, he refused, even though the fascist foreign minister Galeazzo Ciano was in the audience. Afterwards he was, in his own words, “attacked, injured and repeatedly hit in the face” by a group of blackshirts. Mussolini, incensed by the conductor’s refusal, had his phone tapped, placed him under constant surveillance and confiscated his passport. The passport was returned only after a world outcry over Toscanini’s treatment. On the outbreak of WWII, Toscanini left Italy. He returned seven years later to conduct a concert at the restored La Scala Opera House, which was destroyed during the war… (more)