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Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (3 February 1809 – 4 November 1847), born and widely known as Felix Mendelssohn, was a German composer, pianist, organist and conductor of the early romantic period. Mendelssohn wrote symphonies, concertos, oratorios, piano music and chamber music. His best-known works include his Overture and incidental music for A Midsummer Night's Dream, the Italian Symphony, the Scottish Symphony, the overture The Hebrides, his mature Violin Concerto, and his String Octet. His Songs Without Words are his most famous solo piano compositions. After a long period of relative denigration due to changing musical tastes and antisemitism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, his creative originality has been re-evaluated. He is now among the most popular composers of the romantic era.

A grandson of the philosopher Moses Mendelssohn, Felix Mendelssohn was born into a prominent Jewish family. He was brought up without religion until the age of seven, when he was baptised as a Reformed Christian. Felix was recognised early as a musical prodigy, but his parents were cautious and did not seek to capitalise on his talent.

Mendelssohn enjoyed early success in Germany, and revived interest in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach, notably with his performance of the St Matthew Passion in 1829. He became well received in his travels throughout Europe as a composer, conductor and soloist; his ten visits to Britain  – during which many of his major works were premiered – form an important part of his adult career. His essentially conservative musical tastes set him apart from more adventurous musical contemporaries such as Franz Liszt, Richard Wagner, Charles-Valentin Alkan and Hector Berlioz. The Leipzig Conservatoire, which he founded, became a bastion of this anti-radical outlook.

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Discography

Album

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
2009 Symphony no. 3 "Scottish" / Symphony no. 5 "Reformation" Mendelssohn; Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, Andrew Litton 1
2009 Mendelssohn for 4 hands - Octet, op. 20 & Symphony no. 1, op. 11 Felix Mendelssohn; Duo Tal & Groethuysen 1
2009 Octet Mendelssohn; Amati String Orchestra 2
2009 Piano sonata op. 6 variations serieuses and other pieces Mendelssohn; Pieter-Jelle de Boer 1
2009 Portrait (10 CD‐Set): Symphonies 3–5 / Violin Concertos / Songs Without Words / Elijah / a.m.o. Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy 1
2009 Symphonien Nr.3 "Schottische" & Nr.4 "Italienische" Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy; Orchestra of the 18th Century, Frans Brüggen 1
2009 The Complete Masterpieces / Sämtliche Meisterwerke / Tous les chefs-d'œuvre Felix Mendelssohn 1
2010 Piano Trio, opp. 49 & 66 Mendelssohn; Emanuel Ax, Yo‐Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman 2
2010 Works for Cello and Piano Mendelssohn; Daniel Müller‐Schott, Jonathan Gilad 1
2010 Violin Concerto / Octet Mendelssohn; Philharmonia Orchestra, Vladimir Ashkenazy, James Ehnes 1
2010 Violin Concertos Ludwig van Beethoven, Felix Mendelssohn; Maria Bachmann, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Libor Pešek 2
2011 Mendelssohn Felix Mendelssohn; Zoë Beyers 1
2011 Sinfonia for String Orchestra nos. 1-12 Mendelssohn; Württembergisches Kammerorchester, Jörg Faerber 1
2011 BBC Music, Volume 19, Number 6: Chamber Music Haydn / Mendelssohn / Schubert; Elias String Quartet 1
2011 Violin Concertos Brahms, Mendelssohn; Henryk Szeryng, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Bernard Haitink 1
2011 Violin Concertos Tchaikovsky, Mendelssohn; Sayaka Shoji, Orchestre philharmonique de Radio France, Myung-Whun Chung 1
2011 Primakov in Concert, Vol. 2 Mendelssohn, Debussy, Glass, Bach; Vassily Primakov 1
2011 Cello Sonatas Chopin, Mendelssohn; Pieter Wispelwey, Paolo Giacometti 2
2011 BBC Music, Volume 20, Number 2 Kabalevsky, Mendelssohn, Brahms; Steven Isserlis 1
2011 Piano Trio No.1 d minor Op. 49 / Klaviertrio Nr.1 d-moll op.49 Felix Mendelssohn ; Eugen Polus, Wolfgang Marguerre, Christian Delacroix 1
2011 Piano Trios no. 1 and 2 Mendelssohn; Macquarie Trio 1
2012 Octet, op. 20 / String Quartet, op. 80 Mendelssohn; Emerson String Quartet 1
2012 Complete Chamber Music for Strings, Volume 1 Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy; Mandelring Quartett 1
2012 Passacaglia Bach, Buxtehude, Couperin, Kerll, Mendelssohn, Reger, Shostakovich, Welmers; Matthias Havinga 1
2012 Violin Concertos / The Hebrides Felix Mendelssohn; Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Vladimir Jurowski, Alina Ibragimova 1
2012 Mendelssohn: Piano Trio no. 1 in D minor / Nixon: Piano Trio no. 1 in C major Felix Mendelssohn, Henry Cotter Nixon; London Piano Trio 1
2012 Psalms Mendelssohn, Kreek; Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, Daniel Reuss 1
2013 Il Convegno Mendelssohn, Mozart, Rossini, Ponchielli; Andy Miles, Dirk Schultheis, WDR Rundfunkorchester Köln, Helmuth Froschauer 1
2013 Symphony No. 1 / String Symphonies No. 8, 13 Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy; Heidelberger Sinfoniker, Thomas Fey 1
2013 Piano Trios: op. 49, op. 66 Felix Mendelssohn; Trio Alba 1
2013 Concerto for Violin and Piano / Octet Felix Mendelssohn; Richard Tognetti, Polina Leschenko, Australian Chamber Orchestra 1
2013 Violin Concertos / Violin Sonata in F minor Felix Mendelssohn; Sinfonia Finlandia Jyväskylä, Patrick Gallois, Tianwa Yang, Romain Descharmes 1
2013 The Complete Solo Piano Music 1 Mendelssohn; Howard Shelley 2
2013 Mendelssohn & Schumann: Violin Concertos Mendelssohn, Schumann; Rachel Barton Pine, Göttinger Symphonie Orchester, Christoph-Mathias Mueller 1
2013 Mendelssohn Rarities Felix Mendelssohn 1
2013 String Quartets Felix Mendelssohn, Fanny Mendelssohn; Quatuor Ébène 1
2013 String Quintets, op. 87 B-flat major / op. 18 A major Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy; Barbara Buntrock, Leipziger Streichquartett 1
2013 The Piano Concertos Mendelssohn; Oliver Schnyder, Musikkollegium Winterthur, Douglas Boyd 1
2014 Violin Concerto no. 2 / Symphony no. 3 "Scottish" Mendelssohn; Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Joseph Swensen 1
2014 Mendelssohn in Birmingham, Volume 1 Mendelssohn; City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Edward Gardner 1
2014 Violin concertos Felix Mendelssohn, John Adams; Chad Hoopes, MDR Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra, Kristjan Järvi 1
2014 String Quartets, op. 13, op. 44/1 & op. 80 Mendelssohn; Artemis Quartet 1
2014 Grieg: Piano Sonata / Notturno / Mendelssohn: Variations serieuses / Caprice / Liszt: Piano Sonata Grieg, Mendelssohn, Liszt; Alicia de Larrocha 1
2014 The Complete Solo Piano Music 2 Mendelssohn; Howard Shelley 2
2014 Mendelssohn: Quartet, op. 13 / Berg: Lyric Suite Felix Mendelssohn, Alban Berg; Tetzlaff Quartett 1
2014 A Midsummer Night's Dream / Overtures Felix Mendelssohn; Walter Weller, Kurt Masur, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig 1
2014 Symphonie Nr. 2 "Lobgesang" Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy; Karg, Landshamer, Schade, Chor & Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Pablo Heras‐Casado 1
2015 Coleção Folha Mestres da música clássica, volume 25: Felix Mendelssohn Felix Mendelssohn 1
2015 Mozart / Mendelssohn Mozart, Mendelssohn; Chiaroscuro Quartet 1
2015 Mendelssohn in Birmingham, Volume 3 Felix Mendelssohn; City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, CBSO Chorus, Edward Gardner 1
2015 Mendelssohn: Symphony no. 4 & 5 / The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra & Jan Willem de Vriend Mendelssohn; Netherlands Symphony Orchestra & Jan Willem de Vriend 1
2015 Quartets no. 1 in E-flat major / no. 4 in E minor Mendelssohn; Escher String Quartet 1
2015 The Complete Solo Piano Music 3 Mendelssohn; Howard Shelley 2
2015 The Piano Trios Mendelssohn; Sitkovetsky Trio 1
2015 Cello Sonatas Mendelssohn, Grieg, Hough; Steven Isserlis, Stephen Hough 1
2015 Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto, op. 64 / Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto, op. 35 Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky; Arabella Steinbacher, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Charles Dutoit 1
2015 Bartók: Violin Concerto no. 2 / Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto Bartók, Mendelssohn; Augustin Hadelich, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Norwegian Radio Orchestra 1
2015 String Quartets no. 2 in A minor / no. 3 in D major Mendelssohn; Escher String Quartet 1
2015 String Quartets, op. 44 nos. 1, 2 Mendelssohn; Cecilia String Quartet 1
2015 Mendelssohn / Verdi / Suk Felix Mendelssohn, Giuseppe Verdi, Josef Suk; Kapralova Quartet 1
2016 Mendelssohn in Birmingham, Vol. 4: Violin Concerto in E minor / Incidental Music to “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” Mendelssohn; Jennifer Pike, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Edward Gardner 1
2016 Symphonies nos. 3 & 4 Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy; Freiburger Barockorchester, Pablo Heras‐Casado 1
2016 Schumann: Piano Concerto / Mendelssohn: Piano Concerto No. 1 Schumann, Mendelssohn; Ingrid Fliter 1
2016 Sinfonie Nr. 4 »Italienische« / Sinfonie Nr. 1 Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy; Kammerakademie Potsdam, Antonello Manacorda 1
2016 Violin Concertos Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Robert Schumann; Carolin Widmann, Chamber Orchestra of Europe 1
2016 String Quartets: No. 5 in E-flat major & No. 6 in F major Mendelssohn; Escher String Quartet 1
2016 Jeux d’eau Chopin, Debussy, Liszt, Mendelssohn, Ravel; Irene Veneziano 1
2016 Voyage mélodique : Franz Liszt & Earl Wild Piano Transcriptions Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Gershwin, Rachmaninoff, Franz Liszt, Earl Wild; Vittorio Forte 1
2017 Symphonies nos. 1 & 3 Felix Mendelssohn; NDR Radiophilharmonie, Andrew Manze 1
2017 Op. 2: Hartmann: Concerto funebre / Mendelssohn / Respighi / Schubert Hartmann, Mendelssohn, Respighi, Schubert; Sebastian Bohren, CHAARTS Chamber Aartists 3
2017 Symphonies 1-5 Mendelssohn; Chamber Orchestra of Europe, RIAS Kammerchor, Yannick Nézet-Séguin 1
2017 Violin Concerto; Symphony No. 5 Felix Mendelssohn; Isabelle Faust, Pablo Heras‐Casado, Freiburger Barockorchester 1
2017 Quartets, Op. 13, 44 No. 2; 4 Pieces; Frage, Op. 99 Felix Mendelssohn; Quatuor Arod 1
2017 Spiegel Mendelssohn, Beethoven; Ragazze Quartet 1
2017 Works for Cello & Piano Mendelssohn; Christian Poltéra, Ronald Brautigam 1
2017 Vater Unser Bach, Mendelssohn; Pauliina Hyry 1
2017 Sinfonie Nr. 3 »Schottische« / Sinfonie Nr. 5 »Reformation« Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy; Kammerakademie Potsdam, Antonello Manacorda 1
2018 Symphonies nos. 4 & 5 Felix Mendelssohn; NDR Radiophilharmonie, Andrew Manze 1
2018 Mendelssohn: Preludes and Fugues, op. 35 / Beethoven: Eroica Variations, op. 35 / Bernstein: Touches / Brown: Chant and Fugue / Thoughts Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Bernstein, Brown; Michael Brown 1
2018 String Quartets op. 80, opp. 12 & 13 Mendelssohn; Tippett Quartet 1
2018 Widmann: 180 Beats Per Minute / Fantasie / Mendelssohn: Sinfonie 3 „Schottische“ Widmann, Mendelssohn; Irish Chamber Orchestra, Jörg Widmann 1
2018 Reiselust Beethoven, Spohr, Mendelssohn; Eldering Ensemble 1
2018 In Between Schumann, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Mendelssohn; Sophie Pacini 1
2018 Organ Music Mendelssohn; Matthias Havinga 1
2018 Beethoven: Piano Concerto no. 4 / Mendelssohn: Double Concerto Beethoven, Mendelssohn; Min-Jung Kym, Zsolt‐Tihamér Visontay, Philharmonia Orchestra, Clemens Schuldt 1
2018 Overture & Incidental music to "A Midsummer Night's Dream" Mendelssohn; Budapest Festival Orchestra, Iván Fischer 1
2018 Symphony no. 2 “Lobgesang” Felix Mendelssohn; NDR Radiophilharmonie, Andrew Manze, Richter, Dierkes, Tritschler, NDR Chor, WDR Rundfunkchor 1
2018 The Organ of St Bavo, Haarlem Bach, Buxtehude, Mendelssohn, Reubke; Joseph Nolan 2
2018 Resilience Prokofiev, Janáček, Golijov, Mendelssohn; Calidore String Quartet 1
2018 BBC Music, Volume 26, Number 11: Chamber Works Maurice Ravel, Joseph Haydn, Felix Mendelssohn; Amatis Piano Trio, Calidore Quartet 1
2018 The Bel Canto Violin, Volume 2 Mendelssohn, Bruch, Beethoven; Alfredo Campoli, Van Beinum, Kisch, Krips, Boult 1
Beethoven: Concerto in D major for Violin and Orchestra, op. 61 / Mendelssohn: Concerto in E minor for Violin and Orchestra, op. 64 Ludwig Beethoven, Mendelssohn; Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias, Maximiano Valdés, Elmar Oliveira 1
Brahms: Cello Sonata in E, op. 38 / Grieg: Cello Sonata in A, op. 36 Brahms, Mendelssohn; János Starker, György Sebök 1
Bruch: Violin Concerto no 1 in G minor, op. 26 / Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto in E minor, op. 64 Max Bruch, Felix Mendelssohn 1
Cello Sonates Felix Mendelssohn 1
Concerto for Violin and String Orchestra in D minor / Concerto for Violin, Piano and Strings in D minor Felix Mendelssohn 1
Concertos for Violin Mendelssohn, Saint‐Saëns; Cho‐Liang Lin, Philharmonia Orchestra, Michael Tilson Thomas 1
Concertos for Violin and Orchestra Bruch, Mendelssohn; Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Jaime Laredo 1
Ein Sommernachtstraum / Hebriden Ouvertüre Felix Mendelssohn; Carl Schuricht 1
Elias Felix Mendelssohn; Gächinger Kantorei Stuttgart, Bach‐Collegium Stuttgart, Helmuth Rilling 1

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