Violin Concerto: Recordings: Pseudonyms

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This chapter analyzes recordings with performers or recording companies using pseudonyms. Common to all recordings is the unavailability of information on any of the performers, although several names sound familiar.


The following recordings are identical:

Keith Adams (violin) / The London Philharmonics / Ivan Rabotnek (conductor)
Mariko Honda (violin) / Slovak Philharmonic / Keith Clark (conductor)


The following recordings are identical:

Sasha Bulov (violin) / Hamburg Festival Symphony Orchestra / Amleto Toscali (conductor)
David Oistrakh (violin) / Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra / Samuil Samosud (conductor)

Amleto Toscali and the Hamburg Festival Symphony Orchestra are pseudonyms used for several recordings (Schubert and Beethoven symphonies and Tchaikovsky's piano concerto no.1 with Serge Yanov).

This recording is unique with its 242 bar cut in the Finale, no other recording uses the same cut in the Finale.

Fascinating is a comparison with the following recording:

Herta Wöbbel (violin) / Munich Symphony Orchestra / Wilhelm Havagesse "have a guess" (conductor)

The artist's names are pseudonyms used by William Barrington-Coupe and his label Fidelio.

The 1st movement is identical with the Oistrakh/Samsud recording and the Finale sounds very similar except that it is only cut by 52 bars. This requires some investigation.

Cerkov/Green/Körner/Novak/Schaeffer (=Holmes)

The following recordings are identical:

Ivan Cerkov (violin) / Süddeutsche Philharmonie / Leo Albert (conductor)
Ivan Cerkov (violin) / The Soviet State Orchestra / Grzegor Scigalsky (conductor)
Alan Green (violin) / Russian State Philharmonic / Maurice Labradorus (conductor)
Eric Green (violin) / The European Philharmonic Orchestra / Hymisher Greenburg (conductor)
Ralph Holmes (violin) / Nürnberger Symphoniker / Othmar M.F. Maga (conductor)
Günther Körner (violin) / Philharmonic Orchestra Bamberg / Werner Radtke (conductor)
Jan Novak (violin) / Die Münchner Symphoniker / Milan Starek (conductor)
Eugene Schaeffer (violin) / Orchestre du Festival Belgique / Pierre Narrato (conductor)

The Münchner Symphoniker did not exist until recently founded, but the name is close to the famous Münchner Philharmoniker and Milan Starek comes close to the well-known conductor Jiri Starek. The similarity between the Philharmonic Orchestra Bamberg and the Bamberger Symphoniker (Bamberg Symphonic Orchestra) is obvious, while the Süddeutsche Philharmonie is a pseudonym used by Alfred Scholz to hide the performers of his labels, which were often a German Radio Symphony Orchestra.

Ralph Holmes (1937-1984) uses nearly all of Auer's changes and cuts combined with individual changes to the original articulation, which makes the recording easily identifiable. Here are some examples:

Cerkov/Heinrici/Herbern (=Andrade)

The following recordings are identical:

Janine Andrade (violin) / Pro Musica Symphony Orchestra Hamburg / Hans-Jürgen Walther (conductor) [1957/58]
Ivan Cerkov (violin) / The Bamberg Philharmonique Orchestra / Werner Radtke (conductor)
Kurt Heinrici (violin) / Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester / Hans Westergard (conductor)
Andre Herbern (violin) / Societe de Concerts Orchestra / Hans Lille (conductor)[1]

Kurt Heinrici is also the soloist on a 2nd LP with the Bruch/Mendelssohn concertos, also published on the Dutch Pergola label.

Examples to follow

Laurane (=Grumiaux)

The following recordings are identical:

Marcel Laurane (violin) / Orchestre Symphonique Europa / Hans-Ludwig Westermann (conductor)
Arthur Grumiaux (violin) / Vienna Symphony Orchestra / Bogo Leskovic (conductor) [1956]

There is no other recording by Marcel Laurane. Both recordings were published by Philips. When the new stereo recording with Grumiaux/Haitink was made in 1960, Philips probably decided to republish the existing mono recording on its budget label Fontana using a pseudonym to avoid direct internal competition.

In his 1956 and 1960 recordings Grumiaux cut the Finale by 8 bars (bar 423-430).


Pierre Meyer (violin) / Cincinnati Promenade Symphony Orchestra / Peter Groth (conductor)

Pierre Meyer is also the soloist on three more LPs with the Brahms, Beethoven and Mendelssohn concertos, all published on the Fidelity ARC label. More about ARC can be found here.

Pagani (=Kogan)

The following recordings are identical:

Leonid Kogan (violin) / Paris National Symphony Orchestra / Alexander Gauk (conductor) [1948]
Leonid Kogan (violin) / All-Union Radio Symphony Orchestra / Vasily Nebolsin (conductor) [1950]
Ferdinand Pagani (violin) / Classics Club Philharmonic Orchestra / Paul Libert (conductor)

The artist's names are pseudonyms as on all other recordings of Classics Club. The violinist plays a complete Auer version.

The American label Que issued the violin concerto and the first recording of the Valse-Scherzo op.34 under Gauk with the Paris National Symphony Orchestra (LP, CLS 2005) in the 50s. All other sources state that the first recording of the Valse-Scherzo was made by Kogan, Gauk and the State Radio Orchestra of USSR in 1952. Many of these recordings are combined with the violin concerto under Nebolsin.

Both Kogan recordings are identical, although the 2008 Monopole CD with the Gauk recording used for this comparison is a LP transfer with limited sound quality, while the Brilliant CD with the Nebolsin record sounds better.

  1. The booklet of the Andrade recording mentions this recording on the label Acorn as being identical.