Magazine August 14, 2017, Issue

Maestrissimo

Arturo Toscanini (New York Times Co./Getty Images)
Toscanini: Musician of Conscience, by Harvey Sachs (Liveright, 944 pp., $39.95)

Arturo Toscanini is the most famous conductor who ever lived. He was helped by his dates: 1867 to 1957. He lived into the age of recordings, and radio broadcasts, and television broadcasts. Arthur Nikisch, by contrast, died in 1922. He made a few recordings, and there is even a film of him, shot in 1913 (silent, of course). We have a sense of who he was — but only a dim one.

Today, we would call Toscanini a “rock star.” He attained a fame that is unimaginable for a classical musician in our own age. The founder of this magazine, William

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Articles

Features

Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

The Radical

Long after Henry David Thoreau’s death in 1862, Walt Whitman praised him for his “lawlessness — his dissent — his going his own absolute road let hell blaze all it chooses.”

Sections

The Week

The Week

‐ George Romero, 1940 –2017. Rest in peace — please. ‐ The New York Times has revealed that, in June 2016, Donald Trump Jr. got an e-mail from Rob Goldstone, a ...
Politics & Policy

Poetry

THE CUSP OF SUMMER Geese in skies are on the wing. The pointed flock, triangle-shaped, Announce with honks the start of spring When tall green trees are softly draped. Trumpeting starts off everything Once more. Black ...
Letters

Letters

A Bleak Future for Wage Growth Robert VerBruggen’s “conundrum” about wage-growth stalling (“A Wage-Growth Conundrum,” July 31) clears up when you realize that the categories of capital, labor, and productivity as ...

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