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RCA Red Seal is one of the most prestigious names in the world of classical music, representing a primary force in the development and popularity of recorded classical music for well over a century.
Perhaps the best-known classical label in the early years of the 20th century, the Victor Talking Machine Co. - with its distinctive "His Master's Voice" logo - was acquired by Radio Corporation of America in 1929. As RCA Victor, the new label emerged as a powerful presence in both recorded music and recording technology. The Red Seal label became the exclusive home for a formidable array of classical recording artists that has included Enrico Caruso, Arturo Toscanini, Jascha Heifetz, Arthur Rubinstein, Vladimir Horowitz, Jussi Bjoerling, Marian Anderson, Leopold Stokowski, Pierre Monteux, Fritz Reiner, Charles Munch, Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops, and Mario Lanza.
In more recent years, RCA Red Seal has added an extensive catalogue of recordings by artists as diverse as Van Cliburn, Leontyne Price, Julian Bream, Placido Domingo, James Galway, Evgeny Kissin, Gunter Wand, Ben Heppner, Lorin Maazel, Sir Colin Davis, Waltraud Meier, Denyce Graves, Vesselina Kasarova, Ramon Vargas, Nikolaj Znaider and The 5 Browns. At the same time, RCA Victor extended its presence in the Broadway world, which includes original cast recordings of such venerable titles as How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Hello, Dolly! and Fiddler on the Roof, as well as more recent hits such as the acclaimed revivals of Chicago and Cabaret and such Tony Award®-winning titles as Ragtime, Fosse, Titanic, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Urinetown and Avenue Q.
RCA Victor and RCA Records was purchased by Bertelsmann AG in 1986, becoming a part of the newly formed Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) the following year. In 2004, BMG formally entered into a joint venture with Sony Music Entertainment, under the name of Sony BMG Music Entertainment. The BMG Classics division, which included the RCA Red Seal label, was merged with Sony Classical to form Sony BMG Masterworks, with Gilbert Hetherwick as its President.
Further Reading: RCA
The NHK Symphony Orchestra and Paavo Järvi perform a trio of works by Bartók: Divertimento for String Orchestra, Dance Suite, and Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta.
Ahead of the release of their album of Bartók on Sony Classical tomorrow, the Japanese orchestra's Chief Conductor talks to Katherine about expanding their twentieth-century and contemporary repertoire and his plans for their future together.
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