It is astonishing that just 16 years after the building was on the verge of destruction, the most iconic names in 20th-century classical music gathered on the once-threatened stage to celebrate the 85th anniversary of the opening of Carnegie Hall in 1891. This two-disc set features a live recording of this event, performed May 18, 1976.
Rostropovich. Horowitz. Bernstein. Stern. Menuhin. Fischer-Dieskau. Each one a colossal name in his own right. Together with the New York Philharmonic and the Oratorio Society of New York, for which Andrew Carnegie built the Hall, they performed to help ensure the continued survival and development of Carnegie Hall.
When soprano Martina Arroyo had to bow out of the concert because of an accident, Rostropovich and Horowitz "filled in" by performing Rachmaninoff's Sonata in G Minor for Cello and Piano. Later, Bernstein, Stern, Menuhin, and Rostropovich joined in Handel's "Hallelujah" chorus and were credited as singers in the concert archive.
Truly a once in a century event.