A massive 200-CD boxed set of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s recordings has emerged as a surprisingly hot-selling release.
According to Universal Music Group, Mozart 225: The New Complete Edition has sold 6,250 copies globally, for a total of (if you multiply each box by the 200 CDs inside) 1.25 million CDs in the five weeks since its Oct. 28 release. The collection, which was released on Decca Records in the U.S., is formidable in every sense. It presents every work by the classical great; features the talents of 600 world-class soloists and 60 orchestras, and plays for a total of 240 hours (not to mention the many hours of additional reading materials bundled in).
In the U.S., the box set has sold a few hundred copies according to Nielsen Music, which is still striking considering its list price of $480.
Universal unveiled the exhaustive project in late August after 18 months of curation and planning, with the music major declaring it the “most authoritative, complete and scholarly box set ever devoted to the work of a single composer.”
The release of Mozart 225 coincides with the 225th anniversary of the Classical-era genius’ death. “It is wonderful to see the reaction to this box set, which is the fruit of years of scholarship, planning and curation,” comments Paul Moseley, UMG’s director of Mozart 225. “Mozart’s immortal melodies, no less than The Beatles or Abba, are in some way part of all our lives – and this Edition is the perfect way to celebrate that on his 225th anniversary.”
Mozart 225 was produced by Decca and Deutsche Grammophon in collaboration with the Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation.
This article has been updated from its previously published version, which claimed that Mozart 225 was the best-selling CD of 2016.