Our Story

How Cedille Came To Be

James Ginsburg | Cedille Records

In 1989, James Ginsburg founded Cedille Records, a recording company dedicated to making distinctive classical recordings featuring excellent Chicago-area musicians. Mr. Ginsburg's vision for Cedille was to record local musicians performing important music overlooked by the major labels. After listening to tapes of pianist Dmitry Paperno's on-air performances at 98.7 WFMT, Chicago's classical music station, Jim Ginsburg actively and persuasively lobbied Paperno to record Cedille Records' first album. The resulting project, Dmitry Paperno Plays Russian Piano Music, garnered favorable reviews from numerous critics.

Cedille Records immediately filled an important niche as the only Chicago-based classical label and first since Mercury Living Presence in the 1950s.

In 1994, Cedille Records became a not-for-profit record label under the umbrella of an operating foundation, now named Cedille Chicago. This change in structure gives Cedille Records the capacity to produce more noteworthy recordings and pursue larger and more ambitious projects.

To this day, Cedille sustains its core vision, rarely recording mainstream classical masterworks, and only in the context of original programs by artists who have enlightening and distinctive interpretations. Cedille enters into agreements with artists on a project-by-project basis. Recording projects are artist driven; Cedille helps the artist refine the concept, making it a more valuable contribution to the artist's discography and the wider catalog of recorded music, as well as of greater interest to the listening public.

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