EMI Classics celebrates Klaus Tennstedt's illustrious career with this beautiful 14-CD box set featuring his greatest EMI recordings. Tennstedt was a German conductor from Merseburg who studied violin and piano at the Leipzig Conservatory. He became concertmaster of the orchestra at the Halle Municipal Theatre in 1948. However, a finger injury stopped his career as a violinist, and afterwards he worked as a coach to singers at the same theatre. Tennstedt then directed his talents toward conducting. In 1958, he became music director of the Dresden Opera, and in 1962, music director of the Schwerin State Orchestra and Theatre. Tennstedt emigrated from East Germany in 1971 and obtained asylum in Sweden. He conducted in Gothenburg with the Göteborg Theatre and in Stockholm with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra. In 1972, he became General Music Director of the Kiel Opera in Northern Germany. From 1979 to 1982, he served as Chief Conductor of the North German Radio Orchestra in Hamburg. In 1974, Tennstedt made his North American debut with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. His first US appearance was shortly after that, with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, in December 1974, conducting Bruckner's Symphony No.8 (found in CD 6). In Norman Lebrecht's The Maestro Myth, the story was told that when the Boston management asked Tennstedt what he wanted to conduct, he replied: "You mean I get to choose?" In addition to becoming the Principle Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, he also guest-conducted with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Berliner Philharmoniker and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. On the advice of his physicians, Tennstedt retired from conducting altogether in October 1994.