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BRAVA Stingray DNES
05:14
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Today’s Brussels Philharmonic concert focuses on the diverse musical styles that characterized the first half of the 20th century. In addition to the impressionism of Claude Debussy's Jeux (1913), conductor Michel Tabachnik's ensemble focuses on one of the leading composers of modern music: Igor Stravinsky. His first ballet music, Firebird (1910), is a highlight of the concert. The concert opens with Anton Webern’s Five Pieces for Orchestra Op. 10 (1913). These five, ultra-short pieces are not thematically connected, nor do they include traditional formal plans or tonal relationships - prepare for a listening challenge!
BRAVA Stingray NEDĚLE 17.12.
05:59
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During February and March 1865, the Czech composer Anton
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6:00
BRAVA Stingray DNES
06:30
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In time for his 65th birthday in November 2007, Daniel Barenboim has completed a cycle of Beethoven's piano concertos. Recorded live at the prestigious Klavier-Festival Ruhr in May 2007, this recording reflects both a very individual and special reading of Beethoven’s music and the artist’s life-long dedication to the composer. Daniel Barenboim is one of the most prolific and high-profile artists performing on international stages today and Beethoven’s masterpieces have been a key part of his repertoire throughout his career, both as conductor and as pianist. Beethoven himself was a keyboard virtuoso of almost awesome abilities who created a sensation wherever he played. It is no wonder, therefore, that the piano was central to Beethoven’s overall output. Daniel Barenboim, artistic personality and former wunderkind, long an essential part of the international musical scene both on the conductor’s podium and at the piano, is the perfect match for this demanding music. Conducting and playing at the same time, Barenboim chose his orchestra of almost two decades, the Staatskapelle Berlin, which he has praised warmly for its exceptional, dark and warm sound. With a tradition reaching back to 1570, the Staatskapelle Berlin is one of the oldest orchestras in the world. Barenboim plays Beethoven brings together two musical masterminds. In this broadcast: the second part.
06:44
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Works: Ave Maris Stella, S.506, Sonata in B minor, S178. Pianist Peter Klimo studied with Nelita True at the Eastman School of Music in New York and with Peter Frankl at the Yale School of Music in New Haven. He continued his studies with Tamás Ungár at Texas Christian University (TCU). Aside from playing recitals, Peter Klimo enjoys performing as a lied accompanist and with chamber music ensembles. His performance during a masterclass given by Graham Johnson enabled him to take private lessons in lied accompaniment and chamber music with Jean Barr. In 2011, he won First Prize at the Eastman Piano Concerto Competition; a year later he won Second Prize for pianist accompanists at the Jessie Kneisel Lieder Competition, which is held annually at Eastman. He has performed in venues such as the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. and at festivals such as the Dakota Sky International Piano Festival.
06:57
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When leaving Venice in 1784, Giuseppe Sarti (1729-1802) was planning to return within two years. The Italian composer and Kapellmeister of Saint Mark’s Basilica was on his way to the rainy St. Petersburg. His stay in this cold, northern country would unexpectedly lengthen into 16 years. As Kapellmeister at the imperial court, he had well-paid commissions and high-standing pupils aplenty; moreover, he was in the position to broaden his knowledge of orthodox music. In Russia, Sarti composed several cantatas, works for choir and orchestra, and over 10 a cappella choral pieces for use in the services of the Orthodox Church. His six-part ‘Now the Powers of Heaven’ is part of the vesper celebration of the Divine Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts during Great Lent. In Sarti’s hands, an Orthodox choral piece becomes a traditional hymn in ‘stile antico’.
07:03
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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Seventeenth Piano Concerto is one of the few concertos he did not write for himself, but for his student Barbara von Ployer, for whom he also wrote his Fourteenth Piano Concerto. This piece was also one of the few to be published during his lifetime, which led to a rare contemporary review its writer praises the elegance of the Andante and the ‘exceptionally beautiful modulations’ in the Allegretto, but also notes the difficulty of the piano part. In this broadcast: the third movement.
07:11
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Sergei Rachmaninoff’s third piano concerto is not only famous, but also notorious. It is famous among audiences worldwide because of its wonderful musical lines, yet notorious among pianists because of its frighteningly challenging solo score. It is widely viewed as one of the most difficult piano concertos. Josef Hofmann, to whom Rachmaninoff dedicated the piece, never played it publicly because (he claimed) the work "did not suit his style". On its premiere performance – November 28 1909, New York – the piano was played by Rachmaninoff himself, who apart from his composing career was also a highly gifted pianist. For a long time, Rachmaninoff’s third piano concerto was eclipsed by his shorter (and easier) second piano concerto, yet its virtuosity eventually secured it a stable spot in the concert repertoire. This program broadcasts its first part.
07:32
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The philosophy behind ‘Les Salons de Musique’ is to bring about original and exclusive meetings between preeminent musicians. These meetings take place in unusual and intimate venues. The musicians share their emotions with each other and with the audience: a recipe for unforgettable moments. London’s Chiaroscuro Quartet, with violinist Alina Ibragimova among its members, is one of the most talented string quartets on the international music scene. In this episode, the Quartet joins forces with the famous French cellist Jérôme Pernoo in the abandoned Eiffel parking garage. On the programme are two complete compositions: one of Mozart’s string quartets dedicated to Joseph Haydn (K. 421) and a magnificent Boccherini quintet with two cellos. In between these two compositions, the lovely Adagio from Haydn’s String Quartet No. 4 Op. 20 is played.
08:35
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‘The most popular pianist on the planet’ (CNN) performs at the stunning Musikverein in Vienna, recorded for the first time at a special TV recital! ‘For me, there are few halls around the globe that have the same prestige as Carnegie Hall and the Musikverein. Of course there are other great halls, but I always feel these two have a unique place in people’s hearts. So I felt that after Carnegie Hall, the Musikverein would be the place where I should do another live recordings’ (Lang Lang). The programme: Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 3 in C major, Op. 2, Piano Sonata No. 23 in F minor, Op. 57 ‘Appassionata’.
BRAVA Stingray ZÍTRA
06:30
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Johann Sebastian Bach composed his motet ‘Der Geist hilft unser Schwachheit auf’ in Leipzig in 1729. He composed it for the funeral of Johann Heinrich Ernesti, although it was not intended as a requiem. The composition is part of a series of motets by J. S. Bach, but the exact size of this series is unclear – as is the occasion for which many of them were composed. The unusual thing about this motet is, that the original manuscript has survived. The RIAS Kammerchor celebrates its 60th anniversary by performing J. S. Bach’s motet in Berlin’s Gethsemanekirche.
06:40
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Who could imagine that a failed job application would lead to some of the most beautiful classical music ever written? Employed by Leopold, Prince of Anhalt-Köthen, an unsatisfied Johann Sebastian Bach craved a career change in 1721. Wishing to join the court of Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg, Bach presented him with six new concertos in the hopes of securing a position. Unfortunately, Christian Ludwig never even thanked the composer for his majestic and superbly beautiful work. Brandenburg Concerto No. 1 is an exuberant four-movement composition. Originally written for the clarion, a precursor of the modern trumpet.
06:59
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Who could imagine that a failed job application would lead to some of the most beautiful classical music ever written? Employed by Leopold, Prince of Anhalt-Köthen, an unsatisfied Johann Sebastian Bach craved a career change in 1721. Wishing to join the court of Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg, Bach presented him with six new concertos in the hopes of securing a position. Unfortunately, Christian Ludwig never even thanked the composer for his majestic and superbly beautiful work. Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 is a challenge for today’s trumpeters.
07:10
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This concert, which is organized annually as part of the official festivities in conjunction with the Nobel Prize Ceremony, presents the most renowned classical musicians. This broadcast brings you the second part of Maurice Ravel’s ‘Piano Concerto’.
07:20
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Thanks to his antics at the piano, his unquestionable love for the works of Johann Sebastian Bach, and his unbelievable technique, it is only logical that the young French pianist David Fray has often been compared to pianist Glenn Gould. How true this comparison rings is evident from this concert that features music by J. S. Bach alone. In this broadcast: 'Partita No. 6 in E minor, BWV 830', part 1.
07:31
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Ludwig van Beethoven was an exceptional pianist, perhaps that is why people tend to forget he was also a capable violinist. Although perhaps not a virtuoso, Beethoven loved the instrument and wrote no lesser than ten sonatas for it, several pieces of chamber music and of course the violin concerto. His ‘Two Romances for Violin and Orchestra’ stand out , because they are two pieces of a whole that are still very reminiscent of solo concertos. Performers: Renaud Capuçon, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra
07:48
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Unlike his prior symphonies, Anton
08:07
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The philosophy behind ‘Les Salons de Musique’ is to bring about original and exclusive meetings between preeminent musicians. These meetings take place in unusual and intimate venues. The musicians share their emotions with each other and with the audience: a recipe for unforgettable moments. This 20th episode of ‘Les Salons de Musique’ brings us Rosemary Standley, who revisits a mix of old, popular folk as well as art music. She explores all genres while taking us on a journey to enchanting worlds. While juggling a range of composers, she masters their repertoires. For her episode of ‘Les Salons de Musique’, Rosemary Standley offers us a four-legged journey. First, she invites a number of musical friends, including Bruno Helstroffer (theorbo and guitar), Elizabeth Geiger (clavichord), and Martin Bauer (viola da gamba), with whom she brings her personal take on early music to the stage. Then, the vocalist invites pianist Sylvian Griotto to join her in performance. After this, accompanied by the Brazilian cellist Dom la Nena, she leaves the beaten track behind for a folk recital. Rosemary Standley performs music written or made popular by the likes of Kurt Weill, Peggy Lee, Henry Purcell, and Leonard Cohen. Last but not least, the ‘Moriarty’ ensemble appears on stage. This group was founded in 1995 by six musicians from American, French, Swiss, and Vietnamese descend. Moriarty finds its inspiration in the American blues of the 1930s, while elements from jazz, traditional Malinese music, electronic music, folk and klezmer are also put in the mix.
BRAVA Stingray SOBOTA 16.12.
06:13
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When Antonin Dvorák was elected honourary member of the Royal Philharmonic Society in London in 1884 and invited to write a symphony, the composer was up to the task. He was full of fresh admiration for Brahms’ third symphony and he had just been planning to start on a new composition himself. The first ideas presented themselves when he entered the train station in Prague and a train full of men from Pest drew in. The group was in Prague for a special programme at the National Theatre that was aimed at increasing awareness of the political struggles of the Czech nation. Dvorák decided that his symphony had to reflect these struggles, leading to the birth of a masterpiece. In this broadcast: the second movement.
06:23
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In 1782, when young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had lived in Vienna for over a year, the rewards of his Singspiel (literally: "song-play") ‘Die Entführung aus dem Serail’ started to come in and he was flooded with requests for new pieces. His father, Leopold Mozart, did not agree with his son’s choice of moving to Vienna and moreover refused to give his blessing to the latter’s intended marriage to Constanze Weber. He did, however, want his son to write the music for the inauguration ceremony of the new mayor of Salzburg, Sigmund Haffner, and even though the young Mozart was up to his ears in work he honoured his father’s request and composed a serenade. When six months on he needed a new symphony, he remembered this piece, adapted it and created the Haffner Symphony. The premiere was a great success, the composer wrote to his father: "the theatre could not have been more crowded...every box was full. But what pleased me most of all was that His Majesty the Emperor was present and, goodness!—how delighted he was and how he applauded me!" In this broadcast: the fourth movement.
06:30
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Many popular 17th century chants were performed on traditional, usually unattributed melodies. An example of a four-part polyphonic "kant" paean from the second half of the 17th century is the Maria hymn by the monk and poet Yepifani Slavinetsky, of who only his year of death is known. A kant, used in the liturgy, was mainly used in the Russian, Ukrainian, and Belarus churches. In Slavinetski’s Maria hymn, he addresses the famous Iverskaya icon of the Greek Iviron monastery in the monastic state of the holy Mount Athos. Legend has it, that the Iverskaya icon was produced by the evangelist Lucas. The anonymous composer of ‘O Most Holy Maiden Mary’ provides this kant with traditional, parallel voicings and short cadenzas.
06:42
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Fifteen years it took Robert Schumann to write his Piano Concerto in A minor. Originally, Schumann considered the first movement, composed in 1841, to be an independent composition (a fantasy for piano and orchestra in A minor), but he later added a second and a third part that made it into a proper concerto. The results are considerable: the piece is not just a display of virtuosity like many solo concertos of its day, but a perfectly balanced dialogue between orchestra and piano. Thanks to his wife Clara, the concerto got the fame it deserves: after the death of her husband she continued to perform the piece on a regular basis and on various stages. In this broadcast: the first movement.
06:57
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This work forms part of Franz Liszt’s ‘Années de p
07:02
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This world famous ‘Adagio’ by Samuel Barber is now mostly known in its orchestral version, but originally the ‘Adagio’ is the slow section of his First String Quartet. Because of its emotional impact, the composition is often connected to mourning – it was played at the funerals of both Roosevelt and J.F. Kennedy. This version for orchestra was first performed in 1938 and became a world wide success. The ‘Adagio’ was for instance one of few American pieces that were being played in Russia during the Cold War.
07:12
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Who could imagine that a failed job application would lead to some of the most beautiful classical music ever written? Employed by Leopold, Prince of Anhalt-Köthen, an unsatisfied Johann Sebastian Bach craved a career change in 1721. Wishing to join the court of Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg, Bach presented him with six new concertos in the hopes of securing a position. Unfortunately, Christian Ludwig never even thanked the composer for his majestic and superbly beautiful work. Concerto No. 5 employs a standard line-up of recorder, violin, and harpsichord.
07:32
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Thanks to his antics at the piano, his unquestionable love for the works of Johann Sebastian Bach, and his unbelievable technique, it is only logical that the young French pianist David Fray has often been compared to pianist Glenn Gould. How true this comparison rings is evident from this concert that features music by J. S. Bach alone. In this broadcast: 'Partita No. 6 in E minor, BWV 830', part 5. Performer: David Fray
07:45
KONC
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The philosophy behind ‘Les Salons de Musique’ is to bring about original and exclusive meetings between preeminent musicians. These meetings take place in unusual and intimate venues. The musicians share their emotions with each other and with the audience: a recipe for unforgettable moments. Alice Sara Ott, who earned her share of awards even before she became of age, is a rising star in the world of classical piano music. The young German-Japanese woman’s first great claim to fame were her glowing recitals as replacement for stars such as Lang Lang and Hél
08:52
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In time for his 65th birthday in 2007, Daniel Barenboim has completed a cycle of Beethoven's piano concertos. Recorded live at the Klavier-Festival Ruhr in May 2007, this recording reflects both a very individual and special reading of Beethoven’s music and the artist’s life-long dedication to the composer. Barenboim is one of the most prolific and high-profile artists performing on international stages today and Beethoven’s masterpieces have been a key part of his repertoire throughout his career, both as conductor and as pianist. Beethoven himself was a keyboard virtuoso of almost awesome abilities who created a sensation wherever he played. It is no wonder, therefore, that the piano was central to Beethoven’s overall output. Barenboim, artistic personality and former wunderkind, long an essential part of the international musical scene both on the conductor’s podium and at the piano, is the perfect match for this demanding music. Conducting and playing at the same time, Barenboim chose his orchestra of almost two decades, the Staatskapelle Berlin, which he has praised warmly for its exceptional, dark and warm sound. During this recording you can enjoy the 'Piano Concerto No. 5'.
BRAVA Stingray NEDĚLE 17.12.
06:18
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When Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and his wife made a stopover in Linz on their trip from Vienna to Salzburg in 1783 and the local count found out about this, the composer was invited to perform a concert. Mozart of course could not refuse, but had a problem: he had not brought a single symphony with him. There was nothing else he could do than write a new piece. This he did: in the ridiculously short time of four days he composed his Symphony No. 36, that since carries the nickname ‘Linz’. The hurry Mozart was in cannot be heard in the least it is a beautiful symphony that is still much-loved. In this broadcast: the second movement.
06:34
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Many 18th century Russian composers have been forgotten, but Dmitry Bortniansky (1751-1825) has escaped that fate. Bortniansky, who was very much loved and admired in his day, was as respected after death as in life: his chamber music and vocal compositions remained very popular. As Director of the Imperial Chapel Choir, he composed an impressive number of choral pieces, which unfortunately have not all survived. Among his published compositions are 35 sacred concertos, 10 concertos for double choruses, two complete liturgical works, several Cherubic Hymns, and countless settings of traditional orthodox chants. In Bortniansky’s works, the Russian choral composition got its classic shape: three parts in fast-slow-fast movements, augmented by elements of secular instrumental concerts and sacred vocal music.
06:42
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Time and again, Holland Baroque stuns audiences with its wide variety of musical programmes. Each programme features a no–holds–barred musical meeting with baroque musicians, and also with musicians from other genres. Rest assured: baroque music always takes centre stage. In this broadcast, Holland Baroque performs the Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 by Johann Sebastian Bach. He composed it in 1721. At the time Bach was in the service of Leopold, Prince of Anhalt-Köthen, but he was secretly on the lookout for a new employer. Bach chose to dedicate his Brandenburg concerts to Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg-Schwedt, hoping the Margrave would invite him to his court. Unfortunately this open application came to nothing – Bach did not even receive a thank-you from the Margrave. Bach composed his Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 for three violins, three cellos, and basso continuo, all played here wonderfully by the members of Holland Baroque.
06:53
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For two centuries it was assumed that Ludwig van Beethoven composed his Second Piano Concerto as a 23-year-old in 1794, when he was preparing his debut in Vienna and needed a show piece. It is quite an accomplishment to be able to compose and perform a concerto like this one at such a young age. The piece was indeed part of the programme for his first public performance on March 29 1795. From letters it now appears, though, that a large part of the concerto, the first two movements at least, were written as early as 1789. Six years before his official debut! Impressive as that may be, Beethoven himself was not entirely satisfied with the piece. Throughout the years he continued to make changes to the concerto and only in 1801 he granted permission to publish it, to which he adds in an accompanying letter: ,,I do not claim it to be one of my best ... However, it will not disgrace you to publish it". In this broadcast: the second movement.
07:02
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Johann Sebastian Bach composed his motet ‘Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied’ around 1727. Like many of his motets, the text of this piece is based on the Bible and a hymn. It was probably performed first on January 1, 1724, in celebration of the new year. Unfortunately, the original manuscript has not survived, but the voice parts of the first two movements have been handed down through history. Many generations of musicians have made reconstructions of the work, as did Ton Koopman. The RIAS Kammerchor celebrates its 60th anniversary by performing this motet in Berlin’s Gethsemanekirche.
07:19
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Who could imagine that a failed job application would lead to some of the most beautiful classical music ever written? Employed by Leopold, Prince of Anhalt-Köthen, an unsatisfied Johann Sebastian Bach craved a career change in 1721. Wishing to join the court of Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg, Bach presented him with six new concertos in the hopes of securing a position. Unfortunately, Christian Ludwig never even thanked the composer for his majestic and superbly beautiful work. In Concerto No. 6, Bach forgoes traditional violins opting instead for two solo violas at time when the instrument was strictly for accompaniment.
07:35
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Born through the friendship between three families (Capuçon, Chalmin and Scapolan), the Bel Air Festival was, for 15 years, a unique place to share, to meet and exchange between musicians coming from all around the globe. This 15th and last edition promises to have magical moments, gathering the most faithful musicians who have accompanied Renaud Capuçon over the past years. You are now listening to Antonio Vivaldi’s ‘Concerto for Two Violins in D minor’, Op. 3, No. 11.
07:44
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Fifteen years it took Robert Schumann to write his Piano Concerto in A minor. Originally, Schumann considered the first movement, composed in 1841, to be an independent composition (a fantasy for piano and orchestra in A minor), but he later added a second and a third part that made it into a proper concerto. The results are considerable: the piece is not just a display of virtuosity like many solo concertos of its day, but a perfectly balanced dialogue between orchestra and piano. Thanks to his wife Clara, the concerto got the fame it deserves: after the death of her husband she continued to perform the piece on a regular basis and on various stages. In this broadcast: the second and third movements.
08:04
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The philosophy behind ‘Les Salons de Musique’ is to bring about original and exclusive meetings between preeminent musicians. These meetings take place in unusual and intimate venues. The musicians share their emotions with each other and with the audience: a recipe for unforgettable moments. Although Lise de la Salle is still a youngster, she is hardly the new kid on the block: the pianist, who was taught by Pascal Nemirovski from age 10, was unanimously elected as first of her class when she studied with Pierre Réach at the Paris Conservatory. At 15, Bruno Rigutto helped her develop her career, which led to performances in the world’s most prestigious music venues. She recorded her first CD in 2002, featuring compositions by Ravel and Rachmaninov. Later, she recorded a CD devoted to the music of Bach and Liszt. In 2011, she released an album with works by Chopin. The members of the Modigliani Quartet are also alumni of the Paris Conservatory. In 2004, 2005, and 2006, they managed to secure three prestigious awards.
BRAVA Stingray PONDĚLÍ 18.12.
06:04
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,,Nobody understood it. I wish I could conduct the first performance - 50 years after I'm gone.’’ Gustav Mahler wrote his Symphony No. 5 in the summers of 1901 and 1902, a period of change in the composer's life. As director of the Wiener Staatsoper and conductor of the Wiener Philharmoniker, he had one of the most-wanted positions in the music business, while he also met his wife Alma Mahler, who was pregnant with their first child, in 1902. Mahler's health gave less cause for celebration: a hemorrhage would have killed him in 1901, had his doctor not prevented that. Keeping this in mind, it comes as no surprise that Mahler's approach to composition changed. His work premiered in 1904, but the audience was not ready for a composition this impressive. Different from his Symphonies No. 2 and 3, Mahler's Symphony No. 5 is a completely instrumental work (with the famous fourth movement, the Adagietto, as the highlight), and, moreover, it lacks the philosophical or religious themes of his earlier Symphonies. Mahler would keep wrestling with the instrumentation of the piece until his death in 1911.
06:13
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When Ludwig van Beethoven, on April 5th 1803, took his place at the piano to start the premiere of his Third Piano Concerto in C minor Op. 37, hardly a note of the solo had been put to paper. His friend Ignaz von Seyfield, recruited to turn pages at this concert, later recalls: ,,I saw almost nothing but empty leaves at the most on one page or the other a few Egyptian hieroglyphics wholly unintelligible to me scribbled down to serve as clues for him for he played nearly all of the solo part from memory, since, as was so often the case, he had not had time to put it all down on paper." Only a year later did Beethoven find the time to write the full piano score. Mozart’s Piano Concerto in C minor KV 491 served as a model for this concerto, and the piece was dedicated to Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia. In this broadcast: the second movement.
06:23
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In 1943, after his health had deteriorated over a very short period of time, Béla Bartók was diagnosed with leukaemia. Almost three years earlier he had escaped World War II and left Europe for the United States, but there he felt isolated artistically and had financial problems on top of that. Recognition he only received for his piano playing, but due to his bad health he could not perform anymore after January 1943. The Hungarian composer was emotionally and physically bankrupt. He was in hospital when Serge Koussevitzky, conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, came to ask him to compose a large orchestral piece. Bartók did not know the assignment was financed by his fellow emigrants and good friends violinist Joseph Szigeti and conductor Fritz Reiner. The assignment, to Bartók, came at a crucial stage in his life: he recovered his energy and managed to finish his Concerto for Orchestra within seven weeks. The premiere on December 1st 1944 in Boston was a great success and Bartók’s music now finally received recognition in the United States as well. New requests for compositions were made, but Bartók’s health once again failed him: he died in September 1945. In this broadcast: the second movement.
06:30
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This work forms part of Franz Liszt’s ‘Années de p
06:38
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None other than Ludwig van Beethoven played Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25 at his first Vienna solo performance. A special homage for a special concert. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart completed this piece on December 4, 1786 and performed it for the first time on the day after. The concerto probably met with a favourable reception, as Mozart afterwards continued to play this piece on a regular basis. In this broadcast: the second movement.
06:50
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Thanks to his antics at the piano, his unquestionable love for the works of Johann Sebastian Bach, and his unbelievable technique, it is only logical that the young French pianist David Fray has often been compared to pianist Glenn Gould. How true this comparison rings is evident from this concert that features music by J. S. Bach alone. In this broadcast: 'Partita No. 6 in E minor, BWV 830', part 4.
06:58
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1812 was an eventful year for the already acclaimed as well as deaf composer Ludwig van Beethoven. For one thing, it saw his long-awaited though disappointing meeting with another giant of German art, the poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. In addition to this, his mind was occupied with love-matters as he wrote his famous letter to a nameless ‘Immortal Beloved’, and he got involved in the life of his youngest brother in an attempt to end the latter’s relationship with a maid. Despite all this, he also found the time to compose several new works, including his Symphony No. 7. Its premiere was in 1813, as part of a charity concert for injured soldiers, and featured a star-studded orchestra: besides Louis Spohr on violin, the orchestra boasted the presence of such musical legends as Nepomuk Hummel, Giacomo Meyerbeer and Antonio Salieri. This program broadcasts the symphony’s second part.
07:06
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The Étude No. 3, nicknamed "Tristesse", is actually a study for solo piano by Frédéric Chopin, written in 1832. The piece was published as the third of his Études Op. 10. It is a slow study for polyphonic and legato playing. Chopin himself loved this piano piece and believed the melody to be his most beautiful one. It is not surprising that Tristesse became one of his most popular piano pieces, though neither "Tristesse" (sadness) nor "Farewell" was a name Chopin used himself. The piece has been adapted countless times for all sorts of instruments and settings. This specific étude differs greatly from the others in tempo, its poetic tendency and the lingering but powerful representation of the tuneful melody. Here, the Étude Op. 10 No. 3 is performed by master pianist Lang Lang as an encore at a Leipzig commemoration of Mendelssohn.
07:12
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‘From the New World’ is the title of Antonín Dvorák’s ninth and final symphony, which has proven to be his most popular. He completed the symphony in 1893 while he was serving as director of the National Conservatory of Music of America. For this piece, Dvorák was inspired by the music of America and by the Afro-American spirituals he heard there. He was convinced that the so-called ‘negro spiritual’ would lie at the basis of the future American approach to composition. The Symphony No. 9 was received with applause after each movement: the absolute peak in the career of the Czech composer. Today’s broadcast is part of a series of all nine Dvorák Symphonies, which were performed by the Czech Philharmonic under the baton of the Czech conductor Jirí Belohlávek in 2014. Belohlávek won the Czech National Conducting Competition in 1970. After this, he served as guest conductor of the Czech Philharmonic for two years. Afterwards, Belohlávek was often found in Prague; moreover, he was guest conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. In 2010 it was announced that he would return to the Czech Philharmonic as principal conductor, which resulted in in this string beautiful performances of Dvorák’s symphonies.
07:28
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We live in a "renaissance of the piano", as the New York Times has recently put it. With virtuosic flair and an eagerness to expand the repertoire, a new generation of pianists has revitalized the instrument’s appeal. In addition to the usual classics, they perform formerly scorned works or discover neglected composers. Legato is a series dedicated to presenting some of this new movement's most fascinating pianists – their individual approaches, their fresh ideas and their music. Each episode portrays an artist and shows an aspect of the world of the piano. The sum of these portraits provides viewers with an overall picture of the art of the pianist. Montréal native Marc-André Hamelin is internationally renowned for his musical virtuosity and refined pianism. The Times described one of his performances as "ultimate perfection". He plays works by Haydn (Piano sonata in E major), Chopin (Piano sonata No. 3), Debussy (‘Préludes’, book two), Hamelin (Etude No. 7), as well as two short pieces by Gershwin (‘Do, Do, Do’ and ‘Liza’).
08:59
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In time for his 65th birthday in 2007, Daniel Barenboim completed a cycle of Beethoven's piano concertos. Recorded live at the Klavier-Festival Ruhr in May 2007, this recording reflects both a very individual and special reading of Beethoven’s music and the artist’s life-long dedication to the composer. Barenboim is one of the most prolific and high-profile artists performing on international stages today and Beethoven’s masterpieces have been a key part of his repertoire throughout his career, both as conductor and as pianist. Beethoven himself was a keyboard virtuoso of almost awesome abilities who created a sensation wherever he played. It is no wonder, therefore, that the piano was central to Beethoven’s overall output. Barenboim, artistic personality and former wunderkind, long an essential part of the international musical scene both on the conductor’s podium and at the piano, is the perfect match for this demanding music. Conducting and playing at the same time, Barenboim chose his orchestra of almost two decades, the Staatskapelle Berlin, which he has praised warmly for its exceptional, dark and warm sound. In this recording you can enjoy the 'Piano Concerto No. 2'.
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9:00
BRAVA Stingray DNES
09:33
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When Antonin Dvorák was elected honourary member of the Royal Philharmonic Society in London in 1884 and invited to write a symphony, the composer was up to the task. He was full of fresh admiration for Brahms’ third symphony and he had just been planning to start on a new composition himself. The first ideas presented themselves when he entered the train station in Prague and a train full of men from Pest drew in. The group was in Prague for a special programme at the National Theatre that was aimed at increasing awareness of the political struggles of the Czech nation. Dvorák decided that his symphony had to reflect these struggles, leading to the birth of a masterpiece. In this broadcast: the fourth movement.
09:42
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In 1834, Robert Schumann was engaged to young pianist Ernestine von Fricken, a student of his teacher Frederick Wieck. He realised that the letters of his intended’s place of birth (Asch) could be translated – according to the German system – into music notes: A remained, S became E-flat, C stayed C and H became B. This musical motif became the material for his piano cycle in 21 parts, ‘Carnaval’. You are watching the orchestration by Maurice Ravel
09:52
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Czech composer Julius Fucik has a reputation in his own country that is comparable to that of Johann Strauss in Austria and John Philip Sousa in the United States. After he had finished his studies in violin and bassoon at the Prague Conservatory and taken classes in composition with Antonin Dvorák, Fucik entered military service with the Austro-Hungarian infantry regiment, during which he played the bassoon for the military band. After that he conducted several other military bands, so it is not surprising that over the course of his life he wrote about 300 marches. His ‘Floretiner March’ is one of the best known examples.
10:04
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Mozart’s Concert for two pianos belongs to the most artful and ambitious works of this genre. Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Tamara Stefanovich, these days two of the leading interpreter’s of Mozart’s Music, performed this work at the "Mozartwoche 2008" in Salzburg. Jonathan Nott conducts the Camerata Salzburg. Also on the programme: Mozart’s Serenade D Major KV 185 "Antretter-Serenade". At the age of 16, Pierre-Laurent Aimard was awarded the chamber music prize of the Paris Conservatoire. In the same year he won the first prize at the international Olivier Messiaen Competition. In 1977, at the invitation of Pierre Boulez, he became a founding member of the Ensemble InterContemporain. In addition to his work with contemporary music, Aimard has recorded the five Beethoven piano concertos with Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, at the invitation of Harnoncourt. Tamara Stefanovich enjoys a busy performance schedule which includes recitals, music festivals and concert performances with some of the world’s leading symphonic and chamber orchestras.
10:46
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The philosophy behind ‘Les Salons de Musique’ is to bring about original and exclusive meetings between preeminent musicians. These meetings take place in unusual and intimate venues. The musicians share their emotions with each other and with the audience: a recipe for unforgettable moments. David Grimal is a French violinist, who plays concerts all over the globe. At the Paris Conservatory, Grimal was awarded the prize for Best Violinist and Best Chamber Musician in 1993. Grimal has performed many chamber music concertos with the likes of Youri Bashmet and Boris Berezovsky. In the current episode of ‘Les Salons de Musique’, David Grimal performes together with his sister, saxophonist Alexandra Grimal, and his own quartet, ‘Les Dissonances’, which he started in 2004. This flexible ensemble plays both quartets and chamber music, and accompanies several soloists. Enjoy a varied programme of music by Béla Bartók, Leos Janácek, and others.
11:51
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‘Ta-ta-ta-taa’: quite possibly the most famous opening sequence, to one of the most famous symphonies ever written. It has become impossible to think of concert halls today without Beethoven’s ‘Fifth’, but for a symphony this popular it had a rather disastrous opening night. December 22nd 1808 the piece was premiered, alongside the Sixth Symphony, the Fantasy in C minor for Piano, Chorus, and Orchestra, and also the Fourth Piano Concerto and parts of the Mass in C. A concert marathon, in fact, and truly exhausting for the underpaid musicians. Vienna at that time was experiencing a gruesomely cold winter, meaning even the audience had a hard time in the unheated concert hall. Beethoven’s biographer Anton Schindler noted: "the reception accorded to these works was not as desired, and probably no better than the author himself had expected. The public was not endowed with the necessary degree of comprehension for such extraordinary music, and the performance left a great deal to be desired." In this broadcast: the second movement.
BRAVA Stingray ZÍTRA
09:07
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Russian composer Nikolai Medtner’s musicality already showed at an early age: he was only twelve when he was admitted to the Moscow conservatory. In his early years it was mostly his piano playing that caught everyone’s attention only later on he started dedicating more time to composing. As pianist-composer, he left a large number of piano pieces of which these ‘fairy tales’ are a prime example. Russian composer Boris Berezovsky, performing in this broadcast, is one of the greatest advocates of Medtner’s music.
09:39
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‘Ta-ta-ta-taa’. It is quite possibly the most famous opening sequence, to one of the most famous symphonies ever written. It has become impossible to think of concert halls today without Beethoven’s ‘Fifth’, but for a symphony this popular it had a rather disastrous opening night. December 22nd 1808 the piece was premiered, alongside the Sixth Symphony, the Fantasy in C minor for Piano, Chorus, and Orchestra, and also the Fourth Piano Concerto and parts of the Mass in C. A concert marathon, in fact, and truly exhausting for the underpaid musicians. Vienna at that time was experiencing a gruesomely cold winter, meaning even the audience had a hard time in the unheated concert hall. Beethoven’s biographer Anton Schindler noted: "the reception accorded to these works was not as desired, and probably no better than the author himself had expected. The public was not endowed with the necessary degree of comprehension for such extraordinary music, and the performance left a great deal to be desired." In this broadcast: the first movement.
10:04
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In 1943, after his health had deteriorated over a very short period of time, Béla Bartók was diagnosed with leukaemia. Almost three years earlier he had escaped World War II and left Europe for the United States, but there he felt isolated artistically and had financial problems on top of that. Recognition he only received for his piano playing, but due to his bad health he could not perform anymore after January 1943. The Hungarian composer was emotionally and physically bankrupt. He was in hospital when Serge Koussevitzky, conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, came to ask him to compose a large orchestral piece. Bartók did not know the assignment was financed by his fellow emigrants and good friends violinist Joseph Szigeti and conductor Fritz Reiner. The assignment, to Bartók, came at a crucial stage in his life: he recovered his energy and managed to finish his Concerto for Orchestra within seven weeks. The premiere on December 1st 1944 in Boston was a great success and Bartók’s music now finally received recognition in the United States as well. New requests for compositions were made, but Bartók’s health once again failed him: he died in September 1945.
10:44
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The ‘Les Nuits musicales d'Uz
BRAVA Stingray SOBOTA 16.12.
09:38
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After hearing the beautiful sounds of Johannes Brahms’s Symphony No. 3, Antonín Dvorák was inspired to start working on a new symphony of his own. Around that time, the Philharmonic Society of London commissioned a new symphony from Dvorák, allowing him to be nominated for a honourary membership. He based his symphony on several of the conflicts people encounter over the course of a lifetime. These conflicts were both of a political and a personal nature. The symphony has a very patriotic and nationalist character. According to the critics, Dvorák’s Symphony No. 7 represents his finest effort, along with his Symphonies No. 8 and 9. Today’s broadcast is part of a series of all nine Dvorák Symphonies, which were performed by the Czech Philharmonic under the baton of the Czech conductor Jirí Belohlávek in 2014. Belohlávek won the Czech National Conducting Competition in 1970. After this, he served as guest conductor of the Czech Philharmonic for two years. Afterwards, Belohlávek was often found in Prague; moreov
09:46
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Born through the friendship between three families (Capuçon, Chalmin and Scapolan), the Bel Air Festival was, for 15 years, a unique place to share, to meet and exchange between musicians coming from all around the globe. This 15th and last edition promises to have magical moments, gathering the most faithful musicians who have accompanied Renaud Capuçon over the past years. You are now listening to Antonio Vivaldi’s ‘Concerto for Four Violins in B minor’, Op. 3, No. 10.
10:05
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The year 1812 was a busy year for the well-known but deaf composer Ludwig van Beethoven. At last, Beethoven got the chance to meet that other famous German, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, but Goethe’s personality proved a disappointed to Beethoven. The composer was carrying on a hectic love life: in 1812 he wrote his famous letter to an anonymous ‘Unsterbliche Geliebte’ (‘Immortal Beloved’). Moreover, he was getting involved in the life of his younger brother, who was infatuated with a housekeeper. Yet despite his activities, Beethoven found the time to compose several new works, among which his Seventh Symphony. The piece was first performed in 1813, at a concert for the benefit of wounded soldiers; if ever an orchestra was an all-star ensemble, the orchestra that graced the stage that night certainly deserved that name: Louis Spohr was one of the violinists, and among the other orchestra players were Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Giacomo Meyerbeer and Antonio Salieri. Conductor: Claudio Abbado Performers: Berlin Philharmonic Location: Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Rome, 2001
10:49
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Schubert/Liszt: Müllerlieder, S.565/1-6, Die Zelle in Nonnenwerth, S.534iii, Les préludes, S511a, Liszt/Schubert, Marche hongroise, S425/2
11:54
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After composing his Symphony No. 1 in February and March 1865, the Czech composer Anton
BRAVA Stingray NEDĚLE 17.12.
09:10
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Camille Saint-Saëns’ Second Piano Concerto was written in great haste: Russian pianist, conductor and composer Anton Rubinstein asked the composer to arrange a concert in Paris. The Salle Pleyel, an important concert hall, was already fully booked and would only be available a month later, which bought Saint-Saëns enough time to compose a new piece from scratch. On the 6th of May 1868 his composition had its premiere, conducted by Rubinstein and with Saint-Saëns himself on piano. Because of the little time he had to study beforehand, the piece’s first performance was not a great success, though through time it has become his most popular piano concerto.
09:35
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Goethes play ‘Egmont’ undoubtedly appealed to Ludwig van Beethoven – a fight for freedom. It was the great subject of his only opera, Fidelio. ‘Egmont’ tells the story of the Spanish occupation of The Netherlands in the Eighty Years’ War and of the trials and tribulations of the people of the Dutch provinces. The Catholic Count of Egmont, loyal to Spain, pleads for tolerance but instead Spanish King Philip II sends the Duke of Alva. The Iron Duke eventually takes Egmont prisoner and beheads him. Beethoven wrote theatre music for the complete play, but the overture is by far the most famous part. Performers: Claudio Abbado, Berlin Philharmonic.
09:49
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,,I also wrote something for the ‘In the Hall of the Mountain King’ scene – something I literally cannot stand listening to because it reeks of exaggerated Norwegian nationalism and troll-like complacency. But I do expect the irony to be apparent." Edvard Grieg was not very pleased with what is undoubtedly his most popular composition. His music to Henrik Ibsen’s play ‘Peer Gynt’ was a great success from the first performance in 1876 onwards and has since been universally loved. In this broadcast: 'Solveig’s Song'.
10:00
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Brava presents the new programme ‘All of Bach’. Every Friday, Brava offers you the chance to enjoy performances of Bach’s most beautiful compositions. Moreover, interviews about Bach’s music will give you new insights. The series ‘All of Bach’ is an initiative of the Netherlands Bach Society, which has been a prominent player on the Dutch cultural scene for a long time.
10:55
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Unlike his prior symphonies, Anton
11:05
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The International Vocal Competition’s-Hertogenbosch (IVC) was founded in 1954. Since then, it has been the Netherlands’ only international classical vocal competition featuring two categories: oratorio and Lied. This unique social institute is a vital part of the cultural life of the province of Noord-Brabant and the city of ’s-Hertogenbosch. Over the course of its existence, the IVC has built on its national and international prestige, with world-class winners such as Elly Ameling, Cora Burggraaf, Thomas Hampson, Howard Haskin, Robert Holl, Nelly Miricioiu, Jard van Nes, Lenneke Ruiten, Wolfgang Schöne and Elzbieta Szmytka.
11:12
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Thomas Hampson, conductor Leonard Bernstein’s protégé when he was still alive, studied with Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Horst Günter and Marietta Coyle among others. He is one of the most prominent singers of this day, has performed at almost all of the great opera houses and concert halls and is a popular choice with conductors. In this recording he sings Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s aria for baritone and orchestra, ‘Rivolgete a lui lo sguardo’ KV 584. Performers: Vienna Philarmonic Orchestra, Conductor: Riccardo Muti
11:26
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The year 1812 was a busy one for the by then already famous but deaf Ludwig van Beethoven. He finally met Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (another German celebrity) but was disappointed by his personality, had an eventful love life and wrote the famous letter to his anonymous ‘Unsterbliche Geliebte’ (Immortal Beloved) and also tried to interfere in the life of his youngest brother, who had an affair with one of the maids. Amidst all this he still found the time to compose some new pieces, among which was his Seventh Symphony. The piece was first performed in 1813 at a charity event for wounded soldiers, by a rather special orchestra: Louis Spohr for instance was one of the violinists, and Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Giacomo Meyerbeer and Antonio Salieri were also among those in the orchestra. In this broadcast: the third movement. Conductor: Sir Simon Rattle. Performers: Berliner Philharmoniker. Location: Moscow Conservatory, 2008.
11:36
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2010 marked the 300th anniversary of Wilhelm Friedemann Bach, Johann Sebastian Bach's eldest son. While rather unknown today, Wilhelm Friedemann was one of the most notable albeit headstrong composers of his time. During World War Two, many of his works went missing - and, amazingly, were retraced and retrieved by renowned Bach researcher Christoph Wolff (Harvard) in Kiev (Ukraine) in 1999. For the musical world, the rediscovery of these -musically and technically- highly sophisticated compositions was a sensation. This is an unique opportunity to take part in the world premiere of these 4 beautiful cantatas, performed in the impressive Augustiner-Church in Mainz.
BRAVA Stingray PONDĚLÍ 18.12.
09:34
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Johann Strauss’ operetta about a practical joke turned fantastically wrong is a riot of spell-binding Viennese music. The musicians of the Cleveland Orchestra show that Americans can waltz as well as anyone. That being said, it is surely no hindrance that Franz Welser-Möst of Austrian origin conducts the orchestra…
09:43
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With this concert, Yutaka Sado makes his Philharmonic debut. He will be the first Japanese to conduct the renowned orchestra since Seiji Ozawa several years ago. Critics have unanimously hailed Yutaka Sado as one of the most enthralling and charismatic conductors of the new generation. Sado, the long-time assistant of Leonard Bernstein and Seiji Ozawa, has certainly earned his many awards. In this broadcast: Dmitri Shostakovich’s 'Symphony No. 5, part II'.
09:48
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Star tenor Juan Diego Flórez sings 'La speranza piu soave' from Rossini's opera 'Semiramide', accompanied by Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Philharmonic.
09:56
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Modest Mussorgsky’s opera Khovanschchina tells the story of the changes in the 17th-Century Russian society that eventually led to the rule of Peter the Great. Mussorgsky died before he could complete the opera. In this introduction (or prelude) the slow rise of the sun is described.
10:05
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Playing over 120 engagements every year, Yuja Wang lives a nomadic lifestyle. As a professional world traveller, she carries the essentials for a two-week trip in two extra small trolley suitcases: dresses, shoes, iPad, iPod, and a smartphone. At age 27, Yuja leads a new generation of pianists who can comfortably execute any music, due to their phenomenal technique and strong self-confidence. "Through the Eyes of Yuja" reveals us the life of the artist Yuja in a very personal way. Recorded with a portable camera and Yuja’s smartphone, the film tries to be a digital diary. It is a reflection of the image Yuja casts to the world, in combination with the phantasmagorical world created from this footage by documentary directors Ana
10:53
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The philosophy behind ‘Les Salons de Musique’ is to bring about original and exclusive meetings between preeminent musicians. These meetings take place in unusual and intimate venues. The musicians share their emotions with each other and with the audience: a recipe for unforgettable moments. In the space of only a few years, the young violin virtuoso Nemanja Radulovic has performed on the world’s largest and smallest concert stages. By now, he has given countless performances all over the world, yielding him sufficient Airmiles to secure a return ticket to Pluto. He is always keen to discover new music and new audiences. In short, Radulovic is an ideal candidate for a ‘Salon de Musique’. He chose to invite pianist Susan Manoff and several members of the ensemble ‘Les Trilles du Diable’. He is a regular collaborator of these musicians, in a wide range of repertoire. In this recording, they meet for the first time in this particular formation. Nemanja likes to mix styles and eras. In this original programme, Mozart, Bach, Vivaldi and Tchaikovsky meet. Together with his musical partner Susan Manoff, Nemanja combines the profundity of Bach with the tenderness of Fauré and the humanity of Mozart.
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12:00
BRAVA Stingray DNES
12:04
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Born through the friendship between three families (Capuçon, Chalmin and Scapolan), the Bel Air Festival was, for 15 years, a unique place to share, to meet and exchange between musicians coming from all around the globe. This 15th and last edition promises to have magical moments, gathering the most faithful musicians who have accompanied Renaud Capuçon over the past years. You are now listening to Arvo Pärt’s ‘Tabula Rasa’.
12:37
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Johann Sebastian Bach’s Sonata for Violin and Harpsichord No. 3 BWV 1016 belongs to a group of sonatas composed before 1975, probably during the composer’s tenure as Kapellmeister at Köthen. He presumably wrote these sonata’s for Prince Leopold, later adapting them for his own purposes in Leipzig. This would explain why the sonatas, which are sophisticated enough to challenge the most experienced of musicians, are at the same time perfectly playable for amateurs. The several pieces were meant to be a set just like the Brandenburg concertos. This third sonata follows a typical ‘Italian’ pattern: slow – fast – slow – fast.
13:03
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‘Recuerdos de la Alhambra’ (Memories of the Alhambra) is a classical guitar piece composed by the Spanish composer and guitarist Francisco Tárrega (1852-1909). The piece, composed in Granada in 1896, applies the classical guitar tremolo technique. It shares its title with the Spanish translation of Washington Irving's 1832 book, ‘Tales of the Alhambra’, written during the author's four-year stay in Spain. The piece is performed by the Chinese guitar player Xuefei Yang.
14:07
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Since his spectacular debut recital at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw in 2002, pianist Misha Fomin has become an indispensable part of Dutch musical life. National and international press praise his playing for its fluently natural virtuosity, rich color palette, and great musical intelligence. In this concert, recorded at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Fomin performs a number of pieces including Modest Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition (1874). The movements are separated by the Promenade: a recurring, varied theme that evokes the walk from one painting to the next. The various promenades are variations on the same theme, which recurs in two other movements (Cum mortus in lingua mortua and The Bogatyr Gates (In the Capital in Kiev)). Mussorgsky wrote this cycle in three weeks’ time in 1874. When Mussorgsky visited the exhibition of his friend, the late painter Viktor Hartmann, he wrote to a friend that "sounds and ideas hung in the air, I am gulping and overeating, and can barely manage to scribble them on paper."
BRAVA Stingray ZÍTRA
12:01
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In time for his 65th birthday in 2007, Daniel Barenboim has completed a cycle of Beethoven's piano concertos. Recorded live at the Klavier-Festival Ruhr in May 2007, this recording reflects both a very individual and special reading of Beethoven’s music and the artist’s life-long dedication to the composer. Barenboim is one of the most prolific and high-profile artists performing on international stages today and Beethoven’s masterpieces have been a key part of his repertoire throughout his career, both as conductor and as pianist. Beethoven himself was a keyboard virtuoso of almost awesome abilities who created a sensation wherever he played. It is no wonder, therefore, that the piano was central to Beethoven’s overall output. Barenboim, artistic personality and former wunderkind, long an essential part of the international musical scene both on the conductor’s podium and at the piano, is the perfect match for this demanding music. Conducting and playing at the same time, Barenboim chose his orchestra of almost two decades, the Staatskapelle Berlin, which he has praised warmly for its exceptional, dark and warm sound. During this recording you can enjoy the first movement of the Piano Concerto No. 5,
12:25
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This concert is Daniel Barenboim’s very personal homage to Italy and to Franz Liszt. At this solo recital, at the beautiful Teatro alla Scala in Milan, he exclusively played Liszt material, like the piano legend ‘St. François d'Assise. La prédication aux oiseaux’ in this recording. Famous German Romantic Franz Liszt owes most of his present-day fame to his extensive body of work for piano. In his own day he was seen as a revolutionary, representing the New German school together with Wagner. What most do not know is that towards the end of his life Liszt became a religious composer, often dubbed ‘Abbot Liszt’. Around 1840 people started calling him the greatest pianist of all time. The 1860’s, the period in which he wrote his two ‘Legends’ for piano, were a sad time in Liszt’s life. On December 13, 1859 he lost his son Daniel and in 1862 his daughter Blandine died. In 1863, Liszt retreated to a small, Spartan apartment in the Madonna del Rosario convent, just outside of Rome. Here he composed, among other things, the first legend St François d'Assise (S.175/1), a piece based upon the religious story of St. Francis of Assisi who preached to the birds.
14:11
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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote his three last symphonies in the ridiculously short timespan of six weeks. These three symphonies – Symphony No. 29, 40, and 41 ‘Jupiter’ – had a revolutionary character: not only were they of unprecedented duration, but they also used many then-innovative chords and rhythms. Conductor Frans Brüggen and his Orchestra of the 18th Century performed these three masterpieces in ‘De Doelen’, Rotterdam, in March of 2010.
15:51
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The great clarinettist Paolo Beltramini plays a program of solo pieces for clarinet on Stingray Brava. In this broadcast, Beltramini performs C.P.E. Bach’s Solfeggietto, Béla Kov
BRAVA Stingray SOBOTA 16.12.
12:06
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Every year, the closing concert of the Pianoscope Festival is a unique moment, in which all musicians who took part in any of the Festival’s concerts and masterclasses come together for a majestic conclusion to the festivities. In this broadcast: Franz Schubert’s glorious ‘Fantasia in f minor’. Performers: Brigitte Engerer, Boris Berezovsky
12:24
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This Sonata for Violin and Harpsichord No. 1 BWV 1014 is the fifth out of the set of sonatas Johann Sebastian Bach composed before 1725, probably during his time as chapel master in Köthen. Presumably, he wrote these sonatas for Prince Leopold and later adapted them for further use in Leipzig. Maybe this is why these pieces are well playable for amateurs, while every sonata still has the finesse that can offer a challenge to professional musicians. The different pieces are meant to be a set, just like the Brandenburg concertos. Performers: Frank Peter Zimmermann (violin), Enrico Pace (piano)
15:38
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The philosophy behind ‘Les Salons de Musique’ is to bring about original and exclusive meetings between preeminent musicians. These meetings take place in unusual and intimate venues. The musicians share their emotions with each other and with the audience: a recipe for unforgettable moments. Romain Leleu gives the trumpet a voice. To achieve this, he takes his inspiration from all kinds of music, turning arias into trumpet concertos, and digging up long forgotten musical treasures. A precise job, which Leleu applies himself to masterfully and with visible enthusiasm. From the start of his career, the artist has taken it upon himself to reinterpret the classical and contemporary repertoire, both on his instrument of choice and on other wind instruments, among which the cornet, the bugle, and the piccolo trumpet. In 2009, Leleu was honoured as the most promising instrumental soloist by the Victoires de la Musique; these days, he’s seen as one of the greatest trumpeters of his generation. For this episode of ‘Les Salons de Musique’, Leleu invited a guest: despite his youth, pianist Adam Laloum has won many awards and has graced the stages of countless prestigious music festivals. His interpretations are sensitive, captivating, and virtuoso. The ensemble ‘Convergences’, founded by Romain Leleu, toys with music genres, thus lending its recitals a new dimension. The meeting between string instruments and brass instruments results in moments of great musical beauty.
BRAVA Stingray NEDĚLE 17.12.
15:28
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When Claudio Abbado and his newly founded Lucerne Festival Orchestra perform at the Lucerne Festival, the whole musical world looks to Lucerne. 120 musicians or "best friends" are also renowned soloists or important players in many leading orchestras and ensembles (e.g. Natalia Gutman, Sabine Meyer, Kolja Blacher, Reinhold Friedrich). Live recording from a unique concert - special guest: Bryn Terfel. "A Conductor Is Back, An Orchestra Reborn" The New York Times Programme.
BRAVA Stingray PONDĚLÍ 18.12.
12:07
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To honour the occasion of the founding of the Berliner Philharmoniker on May 1st, 1882, this leading German orchestra organises an annual ‘Europa Concert’ on the exact founding day. The concert is always led by a world-famous conductor and takes place at an important cultural and historical centre in Europe, while being aired worldwide. In this, it has become the Berlin counterpart to the Wiener Philharmoniker’s New Year’s concert. The first edition was organised in 1991 in Prague. In 2002 the Europa Concert took place inside the famous Palermo opera house. In one of the most beautiful old opera temples of Europe, Italian maestro Claudio Abbado shows where his roots are. It is with a reason that this celebratory programme ends with a very fitting encore: the overture from Verdi’s ‘I Vespri Siciliani’. The story of this so-called ‘Grand Opera’ is based upon a historic event, the Sicilian Vespers of 1282. Verdi wrote this piece in the tradition of the French Grand Opera for Paris, but it became most famous in its Italian version. The Overture ‘I Vespri Siciliani’ is one of the best-loved pieces in the Italian opera repertoire.
12:17
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Johann Sebastian Bach composed his motet ‘Fürchte dich nicht’ in Leipzig in 1726. The motet is based on a Biblical text from Isaiah and a hymn by Paul Gerhardt. The motet was, like many other motets, probably intended for performance at a funeral. Originally, the motet was written for eight soloists: two sopranos, two altos, two tenors and two basses. The RIAS Kammerchor celebrates its 60th anniversary by performing this motet in Berlin’s Gethsemanekirche.
12:29
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Who could imagine that a failed job application would lead to some of the most beautiful classical music ever written? Employed by Leopold, Prince of Anhalt-Köthen, an unsatisfied Johann Sebastian Bach craved a career change in 1721. Wishing to join the court of Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg, Bach presented him with six new concertos in the hopes of securing a position. Unfortunately, Christian Ludwig never even thanked the composer for his majestic and superbly beautiful work. Concerto No. 4 places the violin on a pedestal.
12:45
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With its tale of a turbulent fight for freedom, Goethe’s play ‘Egmont’ surely captured the excitable imagination of Ludwig van Beethoven, whose own opera ‘Fidelio’ centers around a similar subject. ‘Egmont’ is set in 16th-century Holland, at a time when the Dutch were engaged in a War of Independence to free themselves from the yoke of Spanish occupation. Even while the catholic, Spain-supporting Count Egmont pleads for compassion, the Spanish King Philip II sends the grim Duke of Alba or ‘Iron Duke’ to deal with the Dutch insurrection. The latter eventually imprisons Egmont and orders the freedom-loving protagonist to be decapitated, which brings the play to a close. While Beethoven composed incidental music for the entire play, the overture is by far the most popular part.
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Machines abound in the work of American composer David Bird (*1990). He has used computers and digital media as a creative outlet from an early age. When the digital audio workstation GarageBand became available, Bird knew he wanted to become a composer. For him, the creation of music began with the computer: both as an unlimited music library and as a musical instrument. Aware of the downside of computers, the dystopian literature of American author William Gaddis play a prominent role in Drop. For Gaddis, the self-playing piano symbolizes the mechanization and commercialization of art: "… the ancestor of the total nightmare we live in, the birth of the binary world where there is no other option than yes or no. No refuge is possible." Bird explains what fascinates him: "Gladdis starts with the construction of punch cards, the holes in piano rolls. It is as if he looks right through them and describes the downfall of creativity. As soon as people were able to buy a piano that played itself, they stopped playing." This led Bird to the subject of Drop. The piece's title has a double meaning: it alludes to the fall of artistry, as well as the moment in music where the rhythm shifts and clearly works towards a climax, a musical figure of speech used in IDM (intelligent dance music), dubstep and hardcore. "I produced Drop largely as pop music, the way in which I edited the audio files, arranged them and cut them into parts." Visually, Drop also gives the impression of pop music. Stroboscopes are placed in between the string octet giving the performance the flickering look of a small-scale stadium performance. This way Bird integrates popular culture into his own work.
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For more information visit www.stingraybrava.com
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Two concepts lie at the heart of composer Shih-Wei Lo’s Madhye II. One is the work-concept of musical philosopher Lydia Goehr, and the other is the literary stylistic device of metafiction, which questions our perception of the musical work. Is a composition the performance or the score? To what extent does the aural performance already lie in the music on paper? Why do performers start with the first note in a score instead of improvising on it? Lo (*1985) links Goehr’s ideas with the relatively recent development of recording techniques: recording a performance offers the possibility of endless variations of that same work as each new recording, each interpretation, changes the composition. In Madhye II, Lo plays with recordings of his own earlier work for choir, Madhye. Thus, he explores metafiction, echoing an older work (Madhye) in a new one (Madhye II), the result reflecting upon itself and questioning itself from within.
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The Gaudeamus Foundation presents the latest works by young music pioneers. THAUMA is an electroacoustic composition by Giulio Colangelo (*1986) in two movements for two percussionists, using three amplified guitars and pre-recorded electronics. The guitars are outfitted with felt pads and amplified through ceramic microphones placed under a bridge.
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Millions of television viewers in Germany, France, Portugal, Greece and Finland experienced live the moving open-air concert within the highly symbolic surrounding of the Alhambra in Granada. Music as a language of peace – this vision unifies the young musicians of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra who come from Israel, Palestine, Syria, Jordan, Egypt and Europe. They perform side by side in the orchestra formed in 1999 by Daniel Barenboim and Edward Said. The orchestra has taken on the complex challenge of performing music to promote peace. On the program: Ludwig van Beethoven – Leonore Overture Nr. 3, Bottesini – Fantasia on a theme by Rossini, Johannes Brahms – Symphony Nr. 1, Richard Wagner – Vorspiel und Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde.
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In 2008, the 15th edition of the Verbier Festival brought together the most prestigious musicians of the classical music scene. One of them was pianist Yuja Wang. This fleet-fingered Chinese pianist experienced her breakthrough in 2007, when she subbed for Martha Argerich, whi was forced to cancel several engagements with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. At the 2008 Verbier Festival, Wang played Franz Liszt’s Sonata in B minor and Alexander Scriabin’s Piano Sonata No. 2, as well as Nikolai Rimski-Korsakov’s famous ‘Flight of the Bumblebee’ and several other compositions. Wang’s performance of Rimski-Korsakov’s piece has been seen by 4 million people on YouTube!
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Works: Der Tanz in der Dorfschenke (Erster Mephisto-Walzer), S.514, Rapsodie hongroise XI, S.244/11. After his studies at the National School of Arts with Antoaneta Vodenicharova in his hometown of Pleven, pianist Ivan Penkov continued his studies with Tamara Poddubnaya and Paul Komen at the Prince Claus Conservatoire in Groningen and with Jan Wijn at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. He has taken part in masterclasses with among others Charles Rosen, Rian de Waal, Leslie Howard, Igor Roma and Pascal Devoyon. Ivan Penkov has won various prizes, including the First Prize at the International ‘Russian Piano Music’ Competition in Pleven (2006) and the International Competition ‘Young Virtuosos’ in Sofia (2008). In 2011, he was a semifinalist at the 9th International Franz Liszt Piano Competition. Aside from his native country, Ivan Penkov regularly performs in the Netherlands, such as at the Peter the Great Festival, and in Germany.
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Maurice Ravel composed his ‘La Valse’ in 1919 and 1920. The composition was originally intended for a ballet, but today it is often performed as a symphonic composition in its own right. ‘La Valse’ is an ode to the waltz and to Johann Strauss Jr. The melody of the waltz is played by several instrument groups, each playing fragments. In the second movement, the melodies are growing more complex, while Ravel starts toying with key signatures and instrument groups. The waltz moves faster and faster, until it finally collapses. Ravel, who composed much for the piano, wrote also a solo piano version of ‘La Valse’. This version is performed by Yuja Wang.
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Modest Mussorgsky composed ‘Pictures at an exhibition’ to commemorate the death of his friend and painter Viktor Hartmann. A recurrent promenade theme guides the audience along on a tour of Hartmann’s paintings. While originally written for piano, ‘Pictures at an exhibition’ has been re-reworked for use in many musical settings: from arrangements for symphonic orchestra to versions for brass bands and jazz big bands. This performance is Maurice Ravel’s arrangement of the piece for symphonic orchestra. Performers: Sir Simon Rattle & Berliner Philharmoniker
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Karl Amadeus Hartmann (1905-1963) was vehemently opposed to the Nazi regime. He did not want his music to be played in Nazi Germany, joined the resistance and eventually had to go in hiding. He composed his ‘Concerto Funebre’ in 1938, as a response to the occupation of Czechoslovakia. The composition’s leitmotiv is the patriotic Hussite chorale, ‘Ye who are the warriors of God’, that many Czech composers like Smetana, Janacek and Martinu had already worked into their compositions. The concerto premiered in the autumn of 1939 in Switzerland, just after Germany had entered Poland and the war was in full swing.
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Murray Perahia has often been described as an aristocrat of the piano, and with good reason. There is, however, nothing exclusive or intellectual, let alone academic, about his playing. His commanding vision, like his supremely polished virtuosity, is complemented by a luminous intelligence and a poetic sensitivity which has been his trademark from the start, embracing equally the lyric and the epic just as Beethoven did who combined the Classic and Romantic like no other. Perahia’s Beethoven, with its formal balance, crystalline textures, eloquent phrasing, unfailingly beautiful tone and spacious grasp of large-scale structure, allows us to eavesdrop on the development of a towering genius as he ushers in the birth of an era.
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Sergey Rachmaninov’s first symphony was seen as a feat but not well received by critics, regardless of what he may have accomplished. The bad reviews and problems in his personal life caused him to sink into depression. Rachmaninov suffered from writer’s block: he could not get a single note on paper. In addition he started drinking, which also jeopardised his piano career: because of the alcohol his hands started shaking to such an extent that he could not properly play anymore. Rachmaninov decided that he could not go on like that and visited Dr. Dahl, a ‘neoropsychotherapy’ specialist. This saved him: Dr. Dahl found a way to help him and Rachmaninov started composing again. The Second Piano Concerto is the result of this hard labour and a clear turning point in the composer’s life. Dedicated to Dr. Dahl out of gratitude, this is one of the most famous pieces of the Russian composer, who never again suffered from depression the way he did in his younger years. In this broadcast: the first movement.
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After composing his Symphony No. 1 in February and March 1865, the Czech composer Anton
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di’s ‘Concerto di Dresda’ in g minor RV 577. Location: Semperoper, Dresden, 1998.
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Should it be true that J.S. Bach actually composed the Goldberg Variations as a sleeping aid for Graf Keyserlingk, then Evgeni Koroliov, born 1949 in Moscow, must have succumbed to a misapprehension. The further he proceeds in the series of variations of this colossal opus, the more wide-eyed the audience turned out to be. Koroliov’s performances of Bach’s music usually arouse great excitement and his rendering of Bach’s famous Aria and 30 variations is no exception. The breathtaking intensity develops out of his natural virtuosity. Koroliov is a consummate artist and he convinces his listeners through an enormous spiritual understanding of the works he performs and in whose service he puts the wide range of his artistic and interpretatory abilities. In a cooperation with the Bachfest Leipzig, EuroArts has produced a recording of an exciting recital with this extraordinary phenomenon on the international piano scene – the best way to experience a famous yet demanding and certainly immensely important work by Bach.
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Confusing as it may be: Ludwig van Beethoven’s Second Piano Concerto was in fact composed ten years prior to his First Piano Concerto. The cause of this mess lies with the composer himself: Beethoven held back the publication of what we know as the Second Piano Concerto until after that of the First Piano Concerto, so he could thoroughly review the piece. Together with his septet and First Symphony, this piano concerto was finally performed at his official Vienna debut on April 2, 1800 at the Hofburg theatre, with Beethoven himself at the piano. The composer had long ceased to be an unknown in Austria’s capital: he had been playing private concerts all around town for years.
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Since 1972, the ‘12 Cellists of the Berliner Philharmoniker’ have been a prominent institution on the international music scene. Whether they’re playing classical music, jazz, tango or avant-garde, listeners around the world are invariably fascinated by the wide range of the unique and intoxicating timbres that these twelve cellists can produce. Their mixture of seriousness and humor, of depth and lightness, appeals to audiences of all ages. Among the contemporary composers who have written works especially for "the 12" are Boris Blacher, Jean Françaix, Iannis Xenakis, Arvo Pärt, and Tan Dun. This documentary by Enrique Sánchez Lansch portrays the ensemble of the 12 Cellists, its history and its individual members.
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All of the compositions Mexican Silvestre Revueltas wrote in the short span of his life were full of energy and humor. He was a close friend of Carlos Chávez, another great Mexican name in music, and it was Chávez that in 1929 convinced him to come back to Mexico. Revueltas had studied in Chicago and stuck around since. When back in Mexico, he worked as assistant-conductor of the Orquesta Sinfónico de México, as a teacher and as a solo violinist. He wrote a lot of music for Mexican films and was an active supporter of the labour movement. In 1940, Revueltas died, officially from lung cancer but it was a public secret that he had drunk himself to death. In this broadcast you can listen to ‘Sensemaya’, one of his best known pieces.
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Though it was the premiere of his Fourth Symphony that earned Anton Bruckner his status as composer in Vienna, none of his pieces would exceed his Seventh Symphony in E major in success. Artur Nikisch led the Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig its first performance on the 30th of January 1884, and in January 1885 the piece was first performed in Vienna by Hans Richter and the Wiener Philharmoniker. The second movement of the symphony is inseparable from Bruckner’s idol, Richard Wagner the adagio was written with Wagner’s death in mind and for the first time Bruckner made use of the Wagner tuba. In this broadcast: the third movement.
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‘From the New World’ is the title of Antonín Dvorák’s ninth and final symphony, which has proven to be his most popular. He completed the symphony in 1893 while he was serving as director of the National Conservatory of Music of America. For this piece, Dvorák was inspired by the music of America and by the Afro-American spirituals he heard there. He was convinced that the so-called ‘negro spiritual’ would lie at the basis of the future American approach to composition. The Symphony No. 9 was received with applause after each movement: the absolute peak in the career of the Czech composer. Today’s broadcast is part of a series of all nine Dvorák Symphonies, which were performed by the Czech Philharmonic under the baton of the Czech conductor Jirí Belohlávek in 2014. Belohlávek won the Czech National Conducting Competition in 1970. After this, he served as guest conductor of the Czech Philharmonic for two years. Afterwards, Belohlávek was often found in Prague; moreover, he was guest conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. In 2010 it was announced that he would return to the Czech Philharmonic as principal conductor, which resulted in in this string beautiful performances of Dvorák’s symphonies.
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s took to compose his First Symphony. The piece is lighter and much more spontaneous than his previous symphony and therefore bears comparison to Ludwig van Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony. Even though Brahms started with renewed confidence after the success of his first symphony that had premiered a year earlier, he was still a bit insecure about this new piece. In a letter to his friend Dr. Billroth he wrote: "I do not know if I have a pretty symphony I must inquire of learned persons".
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After hearing the beautiful sounds of Johannes Brahms’s Symphony No. 3, Antonín Dvorák was inspired to start working on a new symphony of his own. Around that time, the Philharmonic Society of London commissioned a new symphony from Dvorák, allowing him to be nominated for a honourary membership. He based his symphony on several of the conflicts people encounter over the course of a lifetime. These conflicts were both of a political and a personal nature. The symphony has a very patriotic and nationalist character. According to the critics, Dvorák’s Symphony No. 7 represents his finest effort, along with his Symphonies No. 8 and 9. Today’s broadcast is part of a series of all nine Dvorák Symphonies, which were performed by the Czech Philharmonic under the baton of the Czech conductor Jirí Belohlávek in 2014. Belohlávek won the Czech National Conducting Competition in 1970. After this, he served as guest conductor of the Czech Philharmonic for two years. Afterwards, Belohlávek was often found in Prague; moreover, he was guest conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. In 2010 it was announced that he would return to the Czech Philharmonic as principal conductor, which resulted in in this string beautiful performances of Dvorák’s symphonies.
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‘The Archive’ presents Pierre Boulez conducting works by Claude Debussy, a composer he considered "[his] constant guide, [his] greatest, [his] permanent model". This episode starts with a 1966 recording of Boulez with the New Philharmonic Orchestra, interpreting ‘Jeux’, the last and no doubt the boldest orchestral piece Debussy wrote. The 1960s marked the beginning of Boulez’ self-imposed exile from French musical life as a reaction against the policy of André Malraux, the then-minister of culture. ‘Jeux’, through its work on formal deconstruction and at the same time with its increased focus on questions of resonance, is a part of the pieces that have had the greatest influence on Boulez in his own work as a composer. The viewer may be surprised to see Pierre Boulez conducting wearing sunglasses, but the conductor was suffering from facial shingles which made him extremely sensitive to light, yet he wanted to carry out the scheduled recording after all. This does in no way prevent us from benefiting from his highly characteristic technique as a conductor. Eight years later, in 1974, it is once again the music of Debussy that Pierre Boulez performs as main conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Although the way ‘Images’ is written is not as revolutionary as ‘Jeux’ (it is sometimes even giving into an Hispanicism that was then fashionable), Boulez’ clear conducting proves to us that the piece also played its part in the "corruption of accepted standards in sound" that Boulez held Debussy responsible for.
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This concert, which is organized annually as part of the official festivities in conjunction with the Nobel Prize Ceremony, presents the most renowned classical musicians. This broadcast brings you the third part of Maurice Ravel’s ‘Piano Concerto’.
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Confusing as it may be: Ludwig van Beethoven’s Second Piano Concerto was in fact composed ten years prior to his First Piano Concerto. The cause of this mess lies with the composer himself: Beethoven held back the publication of what we know as the Second Piano Concerto until after that of the First Piano Concerto, so he could thoroughly review the piece. Together with his septet and First Symphony, this piano concerto was finally performed at his official Vienna debut on April 2, 1800 at the Hofburg theatre, with Beethoven himself at the piano. The composer had long ceased to be an unknown in Austria’s capital: he had been playing private concerts all around town for years. In this broadcast: the second movement.
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Since Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer night’s dream’ was put to music by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, everyone assumes to know what elves are like. It appears they’re floating weightlessly through the air while they’re performing all kinds of mischief. What’s the connection between Shakespeare and Mendelssohn? As a 17-year-old, the young compose read Schlegel’s translation of the English comedy play. Shakespeare’s description of the supernatural inspired him to compose a fitting overture, although Mendelssohn wrote the remainder of this suite years and years later, in 1842. Whomever limits himself to this Overture and the all-too-familiar Wedding March, which are both part of this Suite, is missing out: the complete, 14-part composition, including parts for a narrator, a soprano, a mezzo soprano, a children’s and women’s choir is too delectable to be ignored. Schumann rightly described this piece as glowing with "the bloom of youth". Performers: Conrad van Alphen, Sinfonia Rotterdam
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Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s ballet ‘The Nutcracker’ is traditionally associated with Christmas but suits all seasons. The story of the nutcracker under the Christmas tree that transforms into a fairy prince has enchanted ballet visitors from the day of its premiere in 1892 until the present day. This broadcast sees the Berliner Philharmoniker conducted by Sir Simon Rattle perform the ballet's 'Pas de Deux'.
BRAVA Stingray NEDĚLE 17.12.
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Severin von Eckardstein (*1978), a member of a German noble family from Düsseldorf, was not raised on music. "My parents, my whole family rather, had no affinity with music at all. I discovered it all by myself. I was six years old when I stumbled upon a piano at friends of my parents. (…) It was clear this was what I wanted to do, and nothing else." His family is related to the 18th-century German poet Ludwig Gotthard Kosegarten, who asked Franz Schubert to put his poetry to music. The young Severin first heard classical music when his parents played Schubert's Lieder. "I listened to this music time and again. It was magical." This absolute love brought him to the top. His broad repertoire, which is not limited to a particular genre or period, makes him one of the world's most multi-faceted musicians. During this recital, recorded on January 15, 2012 at Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, Von Eckardstein performs two Polonaises by Wilhelm Friedemann Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven's Sonata No. 12 in A-flat Major, Op. 26, Alexander Scriabin's Sonata No. 1 in f minor, Op. 6, Claude Debussy's Images, book II, and Robert Schumann's Carnaval, Op. 9.
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Beethoven's Hair traces the unlikely journey of a lock of hair cut from Ludwig van Beethoven's corpse, and unravels the mystery of the composer’s tortured life and death. The film begins in modern times, when some Beethoven enthusiasts purchase the hair at a Sotheby's auction. The story then investigates the lock's previous owners. Eventually, science reveals Beethoven's "medical secret". Set to a lush score of some of Beethoven's most glorious music, the film explores the world of forensic testing, throwing into sharp relief the romance of 19th-century Vienna and the horrors of 20th-century Nazi Germany.
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We present the young and brilliant world famous American violinist Joshua Bell, performing Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in D major at the Nobel Prize Concert 2010. As part of the official Nobel Week, the world’s most renowned artists gather each year to pay tribute to the Nobel Laureates. The concert is a special highlight in the series. On the rostrum: Sakari Oramo the Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra.
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Unlike his prior symphonies, Anton
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With this episode of ‘The Archive’, we rediscover two of the loveliest British voices of the 20th century. The first of them is the tenor Peter Pears, whose name is ineradicably linked to that of composer Benjamin Britten. The collaboration between the two started when they met in 1937, and Pears was to create the lead roles in all of Britten’s operas. Peter Pears was a remarkable recitalist, whether he sang a cappella or accompanied by Britten – which he is in the present programme, which was recorded in London in May, 1964. The complicity between the two musicians is obvious: spectators will feel as if they are attending a musical evening in the composer’s home. The second great British voice is that of Alfred Deller. The movement to rediscover ancient music with period instruments, which began immediately after the second World War, is where he left his lasting mark. Together with his son Mark, and accompanied by lutenist Desmond Dupré, this self-taught musician’s alto voice allowed him to revisit – and rescue from oblivion – a vast repertory of baroque vocal music. As the first great countertenor, his unique vocal timbre is reminiscent of the miraculous sound the castrati must have produced. He brought about a resurgence in popularity for forgotten repertories, particularly the 17th century English music written by composers like Philip Rosseter, John Blow and Henry Purcell.
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The further into the cycle of Ludwig van Beethoven’s 32 piano sonatas you get, the more complex and dark the music gets. Especially the very last few can each be called absolute masterpieces. This piano sonata, however, is often wrongfully overshadowed by its predecessor, Piano Sonata No. 29 ‘Hammerklavier’, and its immediate follow-up No. 32, the final piano sonata Beethoven wrote. This sonata is the middle of a set of three (Op. 109-111) that Beethoven wrote for Berliner publishing company Schlesinger.
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Though it was the premiere of his Fourth Symphony that earned Anton Bruckner his status as composer in Vienna, none of his pieces would exceed his Seventh Symphony in E major in success. Artur Nikisch led the Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig its first performance on the 30th of January 1884, and in January 1885 the piece was first performed in Vienna by Hans Richter and the Wiener Philharmoniker. The second movement of the symphony is inseparable from Bruckner’s idol, Richard Wagner the adagio was written with Wagner’s death in mind and for the first time Bruckner made use of the Wagner tuba. In this broadcast: the second movement.
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With this concert, Yutaka Sado makes his Philharmonic debut. He will be the first Japanese to conduct the renowned orchestra since Seiji Ozawa several years ago. Critics have unanimously hailed Yutaka Sado as one of the most enthralling and charismatic conductors of the new generation. Sado, the long-time assistant of Leonard Bernstein and Seiji Ozawa, has certainly earned his many awards. In this broadcast: Toru Takemitsu’s ‘From me flows what you call time’, for five percussionists and orchestra.
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Confusing as it may be: Ludwig van Beethoven’s Second Piano Concerto was in fact composed ten years prior to his First Piano Concerto. The cause of this mess lies with the composer himself: Beethoven held back the publication of what we know as the Second Piano Concerto until after that of the First Piano Concerto, so he could thoroughly review the piece. Together with his septet and First Symphony, this piano concerto was finally performed at his official Vienna debut on April 2, 1800 at the Hofburg theatre, with Beethoven himself at the piano. The composer had long ceased to be an unknown in Austria’s capital: he had been playing private concerts all around town for years. In this broadcast: the third movement.
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None other than Ludwig van Beethoven played Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25 at his first Vienna solo performance. A special homage for a special concert. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart completed this piece on December 4, 1786 and performed it for the first time on the day after. The concerto probably met with a favourable reception, as Mozart afterwards continued to play this piece on a regular basis. In this broadcast: the second movement.
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,,The title Nocturnes is to be interpreted here in a general and, more particularly, in a decorative sense. Therefore, it is not meant to designate the usual form of the Nocturne, but rather all the various impressions and the special effects of light that the word suggests." The ‘Nocturnes’ by Claude Debussy is a suite consisting of three parts, of which in this broadcast the middle one will be shown: Nuages (clouds), F
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When George Gershwin’s opera ‘Porgy and Bess’ had its premiere in 1935, the full cast consisted of African-American singers, a daring artistic choice at the time. It is a very logical choice nonetheless, as the opera tells the tragic story of the invalid negro beggar Porgy who falls in love with a girl called Bess. He is not the only one, however: her boyfriend is the violent Crown and cocaine dealer Sportin’ Life is also after her. This, of course, cannot end well. The opera is not often performed from start to finish, but several of the songs have made it to the standard repertoire. In this broadcast: ‘Bess you is my woman now’.
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In 1854 young Johannes Brahms lived in Düsseldorf, where he helped his good friend Clara Schumann to look after her seven children. Her husband Robert Schumann, who was also Brahms’ mentor, had been admitted to an asylum after a failed attempted suicide earlier that year. It was in these circumstances that Brahms started on two sketches for a first symphony. One of these sketches in 1858 grew into his First Piano Concerto, but the second remained unused for many years. Because Brahms was an unbelievable perfectionist, he needed as many as 21 years to finish his first symphony. But this was not the only reason: friends of the composer and the audience expected Brahms to become the ‘heir’of Ludwig van Beethoven. An expectation that was not easy to fulfill and that caused some headaches. The piece’s premiere on November 4th 1876 was a great success: it was even labelled ‘Beethoven’s Tenth Symphony’. In this broadcast: the second movement.
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When fifteen-year-old Spanish violin prodigy Pablo de Sarasate approached Camille Saint-Saëns for a piece, the composer was honoured. He took the opportunity with both hands and wrote his First Violin Concerto. De Sarasate, at his young age, was already a celebrity and he performed all over the world. Saint-Saëns, who like many French composers of the Romantic period was very interested in Spanish folk music, wrote another piece for the young violin legend four years later: ‘Introduction et Rondo Capriccioso’ for violin and orchestra. This piece not only contains elements of several Spanish dances, but Saint-Saëns also deliberately made it difficult to play. He wanted to present the violinist, who had grown up in the meantime, with a challenge. De Sarasate was very pleased with the result and performed the piece on a regular basis, with popularity ensuing: both George Bizet and Claude Debussy made their own versions.
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Ludwig van Beethoven was an exceptional pianist, perhaps that is why people tend to forget he was also a capable violinist. Although perhaps not a virtuoso, Beethoven loved the instrument and wrote no lesser than ten sonatas for it, several pieces of chamber music and of course the violin concerto. His ‘Two Romances for Violin and Orchestra’ stand out , because they are two pieces of a whole that are still very reminiscent of solo concertos. In this broadcast: the first Romance.
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Schwetzingen is a tiny town near Heidelberg which has a famous palace with magnificent gardens, not unlike those at Versailles. The Schwetzingen Festival is held every Spring in the palace and commissions a small-scale opera for the palace's exquisite Rococo theatre, built in 1752. Il matrimonio segreto is Cimarosa's most famous opera buffa which is reputed to have won so much popularity by Emperor Leopold II at its first performance in 1792 - the Austrian Emperor liked this masterpiece so much that he ordered to play it again from the beginning! The Drottningholm Court Theatre Orchestra under the baton of Hilary Griffiths accompany Carlos Feller, Georgine Resick and Barbara Daniels in Michael Hampe's elegant and colorful production of one of the few 18th century comic operas that has maintained its place in the repertoire until the present day. This production had already won international acclaim when staged in Paris, Stockholm and London - where it won the Olivier Award for Best Opera Production.
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Proof that music can change lives can be found with the Fundación del Estado para el Sistema Nacional de las Orquestas Juveniles e Infantiles de Venezuela, also known as El Sistema. This network of about 125 youth orchestras enables children from the slums of Venezuela to learn to play an instrument and through that offers them a chance of a better future. Thousands of children have already been saved from the streets, but only the most talented children can join the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra. Its conductor Gustavo Dudamel, himself an El Sistema child, has meanwhile become one of the most promising young conductors in the world. Together, conductor and orchestra manage to deliver a spectacle with every performance. In this broadcast they perform Prado’s ‘Mambos’.
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Brava presents the new programme ‘All of Bach’. Every Friday, Brava offers you the chance to enjoy performances of Bach’s most beautiful compositions. Moreover, interviews about Bach’s music will give you new insights. The series ‘All of Bach’ is an initiative of the Netherlands Bach Society, which has been a prominent player on the Dutch cultural scene for a long time.
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The International Vocal Competition’s-Hertogenbosch (IVC) was founded in 1954. Since then, it has been the Netherlands’ only international classical vocal competition featuring two categories: oratorio and Lied. This unique social institute is a vital part of the cultural life of the province of Noord-Brabant and the city of ’s-Hertogenbosch. Over the course of its existence, the IVC has built on its national and international prestige, with world-class winners such as Elly Ameling, Cora Burggraaf, Thomas Hampson, Howard Haskin, Robert Holl, Nelly Miricioiu, Jard van Nes, Lenneke Ruiten, Wolfgang Schöne and Elzbieta Szmytka.
23:05
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The Venezuelan Brass Ensemble, consisting of about 50 percussionists and brass players from the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra, wows Berlin audiences with its ability. At this concert, the immensely talented young musicians play South American pieces as well as great classics such as Mussorgsky’s ‘Pictures at an Exhibition’. In this broadcast: Mendoza’s ‘Guerra de Secciones’.
23:12
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Belmonte is at loss when his bethrothed Konstanze has been taken captive after a shipwreck, together with her maid Blondchen and servant Pedrillo, and put into a harem. He decides to go and rescue his beloved and manages, with the aid of Pedrillo, to break into the castle. But to get into the harem they first have to pass its overseer, Osmin, and Belmonte also wonders whether his beloved has stayed true to him all this while…
23:21
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Marc-André Hamelin from Canada owes his fame to his musical virtuosity and refined piano techniques. The New York Times even praised one of his performances so highly as calling it ,,the ultimate perfection". Hamelin is also active as a composer. This broadcast shows his Etude No. 7.
23:32
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Goethes play ‘Egmont’ undoubtedly appealed to Ludwig van Beethoven – a fight for freedom. It was the great subject of his only opera, Fidelio. ‘Egmont’ tells the story of the Spanish occupation of The Netherlands in the Eighty Years’ War and of the trials and tribulations of the people of the Dutch provinces. The Catholic Count of Egmont, loyal to Spain, pleads for tolerance but instead Spanish King Philip II sends the Duke of Alva. The Iron Duke eventually takes Egmont prisoner and beheads him. Beethoven wrote theatre music for the complete play, but the overture is by far the most famous part. Performers: Claudio Abbado, Berlin Philharmonic.
23:41
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,,I will have to admit, this is the first time I smiled to see one of my compositions in print", Johannes Brahms wrote to his publisher when he first laid eyes on his ‘Liebeslieder Waltzes’. Originally he wrote the piece for two pianos and vocals, but not long after he adapted the composition into a piece for orchestra, which can be seen in this broadcast.
BRAVA Stingray SOBOTA 16.12.
20:05
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Proof that music can change lives can be found with the Fundación del Estado para el Sistema Nacional de las Orquestas Juveniles e Infantiles de Venezuela, also known as El Sistema. This network of about 125 youth orchestras enables children from the slums of Venezuela to learn to play an instrument and through that offers them a chance of a better future. Thousands of children have already been saved from the streets, but only the most talented children can join the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra. Its conductor Gustavo Dudamel, himself an El Sistema child, has meanwhile become one of the most promising young conductors in the world. Together, conductor and orchestra manage to deliver a spectacle with every performance. In this broadcast they perform Marquez’s ‘Conga del Fuego’.
20:10
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Gustav Mahler’s third symphony is, with its unequalled length of approximately 95 minutes, an exciting, mysterious, overbearing and moving piece. In the six parts of this marvellous symphony, Mahler expresses his musical vision on nature, and the place of mankind in nature. The composer uses, much in the same way as he did in his second symphony, material from his earlier 'Wunderhorn Liederen', closing the fourth movement with a beautiful alto solo set to a Friedrich Nietzsche poem, and closing the fifth movement with a mixed female-boys-choir. The symphony originally consisted of seven movements, but Mahler cut the seventh part eventually and used it as the last movement for his fourth symphony. Performed and recorded in 2007 by Claudio Abbado and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, the Arnold Schoenberg Choir, the Wien Tölzer Knabenchoir, and mezzo-soprano Anna Larson. During this broadcast, the fourth movement.
20:25
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The year 1812 was a busy one for the by then already famous but deaf Ludwig van Beethoven. He finally met Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (another German celebrity) but was disappointed by his personality, had an eventful love life and wrote the famous letter to his anonymous ‘Unsterbliche Geliebte’ (Immortal Beloved) and also tried to interfere in the life of his youngest brother, who had an affair with one of the maids. Amidst all this he still found the time to compose some new pieces, among which was his Seventh Symphony. The piece was first performed in 1813 at a charity event for wounded soldiers, by a rather special orchestra: Louis Spohr for instance was one of the violinists, and Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Giacomo Meyerbeer and Antonio Salieri were also among those in the orchestra. In this broadcast: the fourth movement.
20:32
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In 1782, when young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had lived in Vienna for over a year, the rewards of his Singspiel (literally: "song-play") ‘Die Entführung aus dem Serail’ started to come in and he was flooded with requests for new pieces. His father, Leopold Mozart, did not agree with his son’s choice of moving to Vienna and moreover refused to give his blessing to the latter’s intended marriage to Constanze Weber. He did, however, want his son to write the music for the inauguration ceremony of the new mayor of Salzburg, Sigmund Haffner, and even though the young Mozart was up to his ears in work he honoured his father’s request and composed a serenade. When six months on he needed a new symphony, he remembered this piece, adapted it and created the Haffner Symphony. The premiere was a great success, the composer wrote to his father: "the theatre could not have been more crowded...every box was full. But what pleased me most of all was that His Majesty the Emperor was present and, goodness!—how delighted he was and how he applauded me!" In this broadcast: the second movement.
20:37
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The musicians of the Cleveland Orchestra prove here that Austrians are not the only ones who can play a waltz. But to be fair: being led by Austrian-born conductor Franz Welser-Möst must have helped… In this broadcast, Von Suppé’s Light Cavalry Overture.
20:52
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The year 1878 was an important one for Czech composer Antonin Dvorák. Thanks to his friend Johannes Brahms his works were first published in Germany, increasing his reputation and earning him more composition assigments. His compositions inspired by folk music were very popular with his audiences and also with his publisher because of this, which led the composer to write more and more ‘Slavic’ pieces in this period. As the name already suggests, this ‘Slavonic Dance’ belongs to the aforementioned category.
21:00
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‘Adam’s Passion’ is the moving first collaboration between two "masters of slow motion who harmonize perfectly with each other" (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung). In the spectacular setting of a former submarine factory, American director and universal artist Robert Wilson creates a poetic visual world, in which the mystical musical language of the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt can cast its meditative spell. Three of Pärt’s major works – ‘Adam’s Lament’, ‘Tabula rasa’, and ‘Miserere’, as well as the new work ‘Sequentia’ which was composed especially for this production – are brought together here, using light, space, and movement to create a tightly-woven Gesamtkunstwerk in which the artistic visions of these two great artists mirror each other.
23:06
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Max Bruch’s first violin concerto in G minor is one of the most popular violin concertos in the repertoire. Bruch started the composition of this piece in 1857 and on April 24th 1866 it was first performed, with Otto von Köningslow on violin and Bruch himself in charge. It was Bruch’s first piece for large orchestra and he found it quite a challenge: unsatisfied with the result, he took the piece from the stand. Only after substantial revisions, with the help of violinist Joseph Joachim among others, a second version was premiered in 1868. This version is played to this day. In this broadcast: the third part.
23:14
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From the Gasteig in Munich: Germany's most popular Tenor Jonas Kaufmann presents an evening with the most famous German operatic arias. Here, he sings 'Langer trag ich nicht die Qualen' from Von Weber's opera 'Der Freischütz'.
23:32
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The year 1812 was a busy year for the well-known but deaf composer Ludwig van Beethoven. At last, Beethoven got the chance to meet that other famous German, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, but Goethe’s personality proved a disappointed to Beethoven. The composer was carrying on a hectic love life: in 1812 he wrote his famous letter to an anonymous ‘Unsterbliche Geliebte’ (‘Immortal Beloved’). Moreover, he was getting involved in the life of his younger brother, who was infatuated with a housekeeper. Yet despite his activities, Beethoven found the time to compose several new works, among which his Seventh Symphony. The piece was first performed in 1813, at a concert for the benefit of wounded soldiers; if ever an orchestra was an all-star ensemble, the orchestra that graced the stage that night certainly deserved that name: Louis Spohr was one of the violinists, and among the other orchestra players were Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Giacomo Meyerbeer and Antonio Salieri. In this broadcast: the fourth movement. Conductor: Claudio Abbado Performers: Berlin Philharmonic Location: Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Rome, 2001
23:41
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Star tenor Juan Diego Flórez sings Lara's 'Granada', accompanied by Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Philharmonic.
23:46
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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s opera about Figaro, who would like to marry his Susanna but is blocked in his intentions by his employer the Count, has fascinated audiences throughout the centuries. This broadcast shows the recitative and Count Almaviva's aria, as sung by exceptional American baritone Thomas Hampson.
BRAVA Stingray NEDĚLE 17.12.
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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Seventeenth Piano Concerto is one of the few concertos he did not write for himself, but for his student Barbara von Ployer, for whom he also wrote his Fourteenth Piano Concerto. This piece was also one of the few to be published during his lifetime, which led to a rare contemporary review its writer praises the elegance of the Andante and the ‘exceptionally beautiful modulations’ in the Allegretto, but also notes the difficulty of the piano part. In this broadcast: the second movement.
20:23
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In time for his 65th birthday in 2007, Daniel Barenboim has completed a cycle of Beethoven's piano concertos. Recorded live at the Klavier-Festival Ruhr in May 2007, this recording reflects both a very individual and special reading of Beethoven’s music and the artist’s life-long dedication to the composer. Barenboim is one of the most prolific and high-profile artists performing on international stages today and Beethoven’s masterpieces have been a key part of his repertoire throughout his career, both as conductor and as pianist. Beethoven himself was a keyboard virtuoso of almost awesome abilities who created a sensation wherever he played. It is no wonder, therefore, that the piano was central to Beethoven’s overall output. Barenboim, artistic personality and former wunderkind, long an essential part of the international musical scene both on the conductor’s podium and at the piano, is the perfect match for this demanding music. Conducting and playing at the same time, Barenboim chose his orchestra of almost two decades, the Staatskapelle Berlin, which he has praised warmly for its exceptional, dark and warm sound. During this recording you can enjoy the last two movements of the Piano Concerto No. 5,
20:43
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When Antonin Dvorák was elected honourary member of the Royal Philharmonic Society in London in 1884 and invited to write a symphony, the composer was up to the task. He was full of fresh admiration for Brahms’ third symphony and he had just been planning to start on a new composition himself. The first ideas presented themselves when he entered the train station in Prague and a train full of men from Pest drew in. The group was in Prague for a special programme at the National Theatre that was aimed at increasing awareness of the political struggles of the Czech nation. Dvorák decided that his symphony had to reflect these struggles, leading to the birth of a masterpiece. In this broadcast: the third movement.
21:00
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"Havana Danza!" is a dance production from the internationally renowned Danza Contemporanea de Cuba, which has for more than 50 years produced dancers of the highest level with a style evoking the sensual, mystical and raw heart of Cuban spirit. Nowadays, its active repertoire contains more than 70 productions, four of which joyous and passionate programmes have been combined in "Havana Danza!": Carmen, Folia, Demo-N/Crazy, and Mambo 3 XXI. Expect a combination of modern elements of American theatre, Afro-Caribbean dance styles, and classical European ballet in choreographies by Kennetth Kvamström, Jan Linkens, Rafael Bonachela, and George Cespédes respectively.
22:55
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‘Ta-ta-ta-taa’. It is quite possibly the most famous opening sequence, to one of the most famous symphonies ever written. It has become impossible to think of concert halls today without Beethoven’s ‘Fifth’, but for a symphony this popular it had a rather disastrous opening night. December 22nd 1808 the piece was premiered, alongside the Sixth Symphony, the Fantasy in C minor for Piano, Chorus, and Orchestra, and also the Fourth Piano Concerto and parts of the Mass in C. A concert marathon, in fact, and truly exhausting for the underpaid musicians. Vienna at that time was experiencing a gruesomely cold winter, meaning even the audience had a hard time in the unheated concert hall. Beethoven’s biographer Anton Schindler noted: "the reception accorded to these works was not as desired, and probably no better than the author himself had expected. The public was not endowed with the necessary degree of comprehension for such extraordinary music, and the performance left a great deal to be desired."
23:33
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Maurice Ravel was very offended when Sergey Diaghilev demeaned the ‘La Valse’ he had especially written, saying it was a portrait of a ballet rather than a proper ballet itself. ‘La Valse’ was meant to be performed together with Stravinsky’s ‘Pulcinella’, by Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes. But Diaghilev was dissatisfied with the results and did not agree with the version for two pianos that Ravel presented to him in 1920. The relationship between the two men had already been tense and for Ravel this last insult was the last straw he broke all contact. When composer and impresario met again in 1925 Ravel refused to shake Diaghilev’s hand, upon which the latter challenged him to a duel. His friends managed to stop him from competing, but the two stayed on bad terms for the rest of their lives.
23:47
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When Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and his wife made a stopover in Linz on their trip from Vienna to Salzburg in 1783 and the local count found out about this, the composer was invited to perform a concert. Mozart of course could not refuse, but had a problem: he had not brought a single symphony with him. There was nothing else he could do than write a new piece. This he did: in the ridiculously short time of four days he composed his Symphony No. 36, that since carries the nickname ‘Linz’. The hurry Mozart was in cannot be heard in the least it is a beautiful symphony that is still much-loved. In this broadcast: the first movement.
BRAVA Stingray PONDĚLÍ 18.12.
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When the wealthy American Jeanette Thurber offered Czech composer Antonin Dvorák the position of president of her National Conservatory in New York City, he decided to accept. In 1892 he moved to New York with his family and immersed himself in the American music culture. He did not feel completely at ease in America, even had a special dislike for the American ‘high society’, but he did get into contact with Afro-American Negro spirituals. Inspired by these, to him, completely new sounds he started working on his Ninth Symphony, ‘From the New World’. Though Dvorák returned to Europe in 1895, heavily homesick, his homage to America remains one of his best known pieces. The Berliner Philharmoniker performs the third part from Dvorák's beautiful Symphony No. 9 'From the New World'.
20:18
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On the eve of the 300th anniversary, the city of Saint Petersburg, the Russian ‘window to Europe’, celebrated its jubilee with a great musical spectacle. The cr
20:24
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Having lived in Vienna for more than a year, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s career gained a strong boost in 1782 from the enormous popularity of his Singspiel ‘Die Entführung aus dem Serail’ (‘The abduction from the seraglio’). Meanwhile his father Leopold Mozart still disapproved of his son’s decision to move to Vienna and also refused to accept his planned marriage to Constanze Weber. Despite these objections, Leopold asked his son to compose for the inauguration of Salzburg’s new mayor Sigmund Haffner, whereupon Mozart shoved his mounting pile of work aside to compose a serenade. Then, six month later, he needed a new symphony, remembered his serenade, and transformed it into Symphony No. 35 (‘Haffner’), which premiered to great acclaim in 1783. As the composer himself wrote to his father: ,,The theater was packed to the rafters. Yet what most pleased me was that his Royal Highness the Emperor was in the audience – and good heavens how he cheered me!". This program broadcasts the first part.
20:32
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French composer Hector Berlioz was one of the great advocates of programme music (music that portrays a story), though his overture ‘Le Corsaire’ has nothing to do with Lord Byron’s poem of the same name, about the life of pirate Jean Lafitte. He composed this piece during a visit to Nice in 1844 and initially called it ‘The Tower of Nice’. Only in 1851 the overture was given its eventual name, after he had revised the music for a London performance.
20:52
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,, "For me," Astor Piazzolla once said, "tango was always for the ear rather than the feet." Legendary tango composer Piazolla’s family relocated from Argentina to New York when Astor was quite young, but to not lose the bond with the ‘homeland’ his father bought a bandoneón. A passion was born: the composer dedicated the rest of his life to the tango. Calling Piazolla the single most important figure in the history of the tango would, therefore, be no exaggeration. The ‘Fuga y misterio’ is taken from the fifth scene of the tango opera ‘Maria de Buenos Aires’, in which the heroine walks through the heart of Buenos Aires.
21:00
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Manon Lescaut, Puccini‘s first major success, is a work of impassioned emotions based on the 18th-century novel by Abbé Prévost, depicting the doomed infatuation of Chevalier des Grieux for beautiful, fun-loving Manon. Puccini clothes the story in warmly passionate music that makes a direct appeal to the listener‘s emotions. "Manon", wrote Puccini to his publisher Giulio Ricordi in 1889, "is a heroine I believe in and therefore she cannot fail to win the heart of the public." This turned out to be a truly prophetic statement since none of Puccini’s other world successes were received on their fi rst nights as rapturously as Manon Lescaut. The popularity of Puccini’s great masterpiece has never waned and the production at the Chemnitz Opera House was hailed as "a magnificent event" and "moments we go to the opera for."
23:05
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The International Vocal Competition’s-Hertogenbosch (IVC) was founded in 1954. Since then, it has been the Netherlands’ only international classical vocal competition featuring two categories: oratorio and Lied. This unique social institute is a vital part of the cultural life of the province of Noord-Brabant and the city of ’s-Hertogenbosch. Over the course of its existence, the IVC has built on its national and international prestige, with world-class winners such as Elly Ameling, Cora Burggraaf, Thomas Hampson, Howard Haskin, Robert Holl, Nelly Miricioiu, Jard van Nes, Lenneke Ruiten, Wolfgang Schöne and Elzbieta Szmytka.
23:30
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Contrary to his earlier symphonies, Antonín Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8 sounds upbeat and optimistic. Dvorák composed his Symphony No. 8 in 1889; he conducted the February 2, 1890 premiere himself. Like his earlier symphonies, he once again managed to complete his Symphony No. 8 within a mere two months’ time. Dvorák chose to write his Symphony No. 8 as the exact opposite of his Symphony No. 7. He composed the piece during a stay in the Czech region of Bohemia, which provided a huge source of inspiration. Much of the Bohemian folk music Dvorák loved so much can be heard in this symphony. Today’s broadcast is part of a series of all nine Dvorák Symphonies, which were performed by the Czech Philharmonic under the baton of the Czech conductor Jirí Belohlávek in 2014. Belohlávek won the Czech National Conducting Competition in 1970. After this, he served as guest conductor of the Czech Philharmonic for two years. Afterwards, Belohlávek was often found in Prague; moreover, he was guest conductor of the Rotterdam Philh
23:37
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Star tenor Juan Diego Flórez sings 'Principe piů non sei' from Rossini's opera 'La Cenerentola', accompanied by Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Philharmonic.
23:48
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In 1943, after his health had deteriorated over a very short period of time, Béla Bartók was diagnosed with leukaemia. Almost three years earlier he had escaped World War II and left Europe for the United States, but there he felt isolated artistically and had financial problems on top of that. Recognition he only received for his piano playing, but due to his bad health he could not perform anymore after January 1943. The Hungarian composer was emotionally and physically bankrupt. He was in hospital when Serge Koussevitzky, conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, came to ask him to compose a large orchestral piece. Bartók did not know the assignment was financed by his fellow emigrants and good friends violinist Joseph Szigeti and conductor Fritz Reiner. The assignment, to Bartók, came at a crucial stage in his life: he recovered his energy and managed to finish his Concerto for Orchestra within seven weeks. The premiere on December 1st 1944 in Boston was a great success and Bartók’s music now finally received recognition in the United States as well. New requests for compositions were made, but Bartók’s health once again failed him: he died in September 1945. In this broadcast: the fifth movement.
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BRAVA Stingray ZÍTRA
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The longing to overcome human boundaries lead the physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer to begin an experiment that formed a threat to the whole of humanity, and whose scientific results still do today. The question of the moral implications of the atomic bomb is raised in John Adams’ opera, just as much as that of the influence on the private lives of the main characters. Doctor Atomic is the fifth work to result from almost twenty years of collaboration between the American composer and his fellow American director and Erasmus Prize-winner Peter Sellars.
02:56
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"Aufersteh’n, ja aufersteh’n wirst du, mein Herz in einem Nu! Was du geschlagen, zu Gott wird es dich tragen! " The final chorus of Mahler's beautiful and impressive second symphony never fails to move its listeners. Apart from the size of the gigantic orchestra and the use of an organ and soloists, the theme of life and death contributes to the epic quality of the work. The listener may recognize a number of Mahler's earlier compositions from his song collection Des Knaben Wunderhorn. This performance, by Claudio Abbado, soprano Eteri Gvazava, mezzo soprano Anna Larson, Orfeón Donostiarra, and the first-rate musicians of the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, is one of the greatest ever. Recorded in 2003.
04:26
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In 2009 the annual Europa Konzert took place in Naples, Riccardo Muti’s hometown. The charismatic conductor together with Violeta Urmana, one of the leading sopranos in the Italian dramatic genre, and the Berliner Philharmoniker present the overture of Verdi’s magnificent opera 'La Forza del Destino' and 'La canzone dei ricordi' by Giuseppe Martucci, who died in Naples. Schubert’s 'Great Symphony' completes this fantastic concert at the formidable Teatro San Carlo.
BRAVA Stingray SOBOTA 16.12.
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Venice’s Teatro La Fenice staged this Pia de’ Tolomei by Donizetti, with some of the best singers available today for this type of repertoire. Initial response to this opera, which was performed for the first time in 1837, was ambiguous, so much so that Donizetti re-worked it as many as three times. The version here recorded is that of the critical edition recently published by Ricordi, with the tragic finale originally conceived by the composer. The listener will undoubtedly wonder, once more, at Donizetti’s wealth of melodic inspiration, especially when it comes to the character of Pia, wonderfully interpreted, here, by Patrizia Ciofi.
02:22
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With this concert, Yutaka Sado makes his Philharmonic debut and will be the first Japanese to conduct the renowned orchestra since Seiji Ozawa several years ago. Critics have unanimously hailed Yutaka Sado as one of the most enthralling and charismatic conductors of the new generation. The long-time assistant of Leonard Bernstein and Seiji Ozawa was awarded the most important conductor’s prizes. Program: Toru Takemitsu: From me flows what you call time (for five percussionists and orchestra); Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No. 5 D minor, Op. 47.
03:53
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When Joseph Haydn composed his six String Quartets Op. 20, the 40-year-old maestro had established his reputation as a composer in all of Europe. During this period, he was Kapelmeister at the court of Prince Nikolaus Esterházy, who was a great music fan. Haydn composed many works for Esterházy’s court, including symphonic concertos, operas, oratorios, and chamber music. Haydn took his inspiration for his six String Quartets Op. 20 from the courtly life, Esterházy’s beautiful palace, and looming Romanticism, in which freedom and a return to nature were key concepts. In this broadcast, the Keller Quartet plays Haydn’s String Quartet No. 4 Op. 20, this Opus’ most familiar work. Afterwards, the Keller Quartet plays Mozarts String Quartet No. 14 in G Major: it is one of Mozart’s six ‘Haydn Quartets’, which he dedicated to Joseph Haydn.
04:49
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Due to the occasionally grim atmosphere of this composition by Gustav Mahler, and his use of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Sonata ‘Les Adieux’, it has been suggested that his 'Ninth Symphony' was composed as a musical farewell. The dramatic words the composer wrote next to the score's final bars added to that: ‘Farewell! Cruel world! Dearest Almschi! Farewell! Farewell!’. As Mahler immediately started composing his 'Symphony No. 10', you wonder if this symphony was really meant to be a farewell, but it still is his last completed symphony. Mahler started the composition in 1909 when he worked in New York for the Metropolitan Opera and the New York Philharmonic. Although he had finished a successful season, his health was weak: as early as 1907 Mahler had been diagnosed with a serious cardiac anomaly. In 1911 Mahler died, aged 50. He has never heard his No. 9 performed live, as it premiered in Vienna in 1912, performed by the Wiener Philharmoniker under direction of Bruno Walter. Musicologists entertain the thought that the self-critical Mahler would certainly have made the necessary adjustments, had he been able to conduct the work himself. In this sense, not only his 'No. 10', but his 'No. 9' too, remains incomplete.
BRAVA Stingray NEDĚLE 17.12.
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The dramatic events surrounding the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre, in which approximately 3000 Protestants were murdered by Catholics, forms the setting for this historical ‘grand opera’ by Giacomo Meyerbeer. Protestant Raoul is in love with Catholic Valentine: an impossible love. Religion is not the only matter that keeps the two lovers apart, as Valentine has been promised to the Catholic Comte de Nevers, his enemy... This work enjoyed an incredible popularity after it premiered, but suffered oblivion shortly after. This production of the Deutsche Oper Berlin marks a triumphant comeback for this timeless work, presented in a contemporary setting. Recorded in the Deutsche Oper Berlin featuring Angela Denning, Lucy Peacock and Camille Capasso.
02:44
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In this concert, the ensemble ‘Orfeo 55’ conducted by Nathalie Stutzmann plays several compositions of Johann Sebastian Bach. Interestingly, Nathalie Stutzmann does not only conduct; she also sings. Her voice is unusual in its range: that of a contralto. A contralto voice is one step lower than a regular alto, the lowest female voice. Stutzmann once debuted with Bach’s ‘Magnificat’. Besides her vocal range, it was her expressivity that startled the audience. In today’s concert, Stutzmann also sings works by Bach, together with the orchestra she founded: Orfeo 55. On the programme are many cantatas, a musical format which Bach renewed and lifted to a higher level in the years from 1723 to 1725. Stutzmann sings several arias and recitatives from various cantatas, which many viewers will recognize. The best-known number on Stutzmann’s repertoire is the aria ‘Erbarme dich’, from the St Matthew Passion, which is usually sung by a tenor. The concert ends with the beautiful ‘Ouverture No. 3’ of an orchestral suite by J. S. Bach.
04:19
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Gustav Mahler’s third symphony is, with its unequalled length of approximately 95 minutes, an exciting, mysterious, overbearing and moving piece. In the six parts of this marvellous symphony, Mahler expresses his musical vision on nature, and the place of mankind in nature. The composer uses, much in the same way as he did in his second symphony, material from his earlier 'Wunderhorn Liederen', closing the fourth movement with a beautiful alto solo set to a Friedrich Nietzsche poem, and closing the fifth movement with a mixed female-boys-choir. The symphony originally consisted of seven movements, but Mahler cut the seventh part eventually and used it as the last movement for his fourth symphony. Performed and recorded in 2007 by Claudio Abbado and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, the Arnold Schoenberg Choir, the Wien Tölzer Knabenchoir, and mezzo-soprano Anna Larson.
BRAVA Stingray PONDĚLÍ 18.12.
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2014: the 300th anniversary of Christoph Willibald Gluck’s birthday (1714-1787). In celebration of the event, Krysztof Warlikowsk stages a new and amazing production at the Teatro Real in Madrid: this musical and dramatic masterpiece in-between baroque and classical music is staged as a daring bridge between antiquity and Princess Diana’s story on the value of sacrifice.
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The Easter Festival is an internationally renowned event among classical music lovers, traditionally opened in Moscow on Easter Sunday. Each year the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra and its musical director Valery Gergiev travel across Russia - for the past 10 years now! In 2012, the Mariinsky Theatre Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Valery Gergiev performed the complete cycle of Sergei Prokofiev’s symphonies and piano concerti - a composer with whom Maestro Gergiev and the orchestra seemed particularly in tune. Complete program: 'Symphony No.1, Op. 25', 'Piano Concerto No.1', 'Symphony No.5, Op. 100'.
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Although the words criminality and corruption will probably cross your mind first when you think of the illustrious Borgia family, they were in fact great patrons of the arts. Italian renaissance culture flourished at their courts. Jordi Savall, a legend in period music, researched their impact on Italian culture. This concert recreates the world of the Borgias by unearthing and performing the music they knew, commissioned and, in the case of Francis, probably composed.
BRAVA Stingray ÚTERÝ 19.12.
00:00
KONC
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Judith is trapped in a city that is under siege by Holofernes. Judith, who lost her husband during the struggle, is driven to an act of boldness when the male leaders of the city decide to surrender. Her sadness, frustrations, and powerlessness fuel her sense of honour. Supported by a ‘nutrice’, a nurse, Judith enters the camp of the decadent leader Holofernes, where she manages to seduce him. When he falls asleep on her breast, she rashly seizes the opportunity to cut off his head. Now Judith got her revenge – but will it soothe her pain? A topical matter, especially in this day and age where bloodthirst is all too common.
01:25
KONC
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In the years between the completion (1906) and premiere (1908) of Gustav Mahler’s 'Symphony No. 7', the composer's life changed rather dramatically. He quit his position at the Wiener Staatsoper, his first daughter died, and he was diagnosed with a cardiac anomaly. Because of the ‘dark’ character of several movements (the second and fourth movement are titled ‘Nightmusic’, and the third movement is titled ‘Schattenhaft’, meaning shadowy), the symphony is nicknamed ‘Song of the Night’, a name which the composer himself did not agree with. This 'Symphony No. 7' is Mahler’s most abstract work, which may account for its bad reception by musicians and listeners alike at the work's premiere. Even today, the 'Symphony No. 7' is rarely programmed, as it seems to be one of Mahler's least popular works. Unjustly so: 'No. 7' is uniquely structured, moving from dark to light and from dark to a jubilant finale. In Mahler's later work, 'No. 7' is certainly no less accessible than the more frequently-played 'Symphony No. 9'. Of of today's leading conductors, no-one skips this symphony.
03:08
KONC
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Two outstanding artists, pianist Helene Grimaud and cellist Sol Gabetta, perform a highly acclaimed recital at Berlin’s Philharmonic Hall. On the programme are cello sonatas by Claude Debussy (in D minor), Johannes Brahms (No. 1, Op. 38) and Shostakovich (Op. 40), as well as Robert Schumann’s ‘Fantasiestücke’, Op. 73. From the start of the concert it is clear why these two best-selling musicians have teamed up. Critics say these two musicians capture the essence of each composer and their world in a brilliant fashion. Debussy is played lyrically and full of light, Shostakovich sounds heart-wrenching, Brahms’ music sounds dark and brooding, whereas Schumann sounds strangely whimsical.
04:49
KONC
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On October 9, 1989 in the DDR, 70.000 people demonstrated peacefully. This demonstration was a cry for freedom. Thanks to Kurt Masur, who was one of six prominent inhabitants of Leipzig to introduce the notion of 'peaceful revolution', the demonstration passed without bloodshed. On the same night, Masur conducted Johannes Brahms' 'Second Symphony' at Leipzig's Nikolaikirche. The following demonstrations partly caused the fall of the Berlin Wall on November 9, 1989, which paved the way for the reunion of the two Germanies. On the 20th anniversary of the first peaceful demonstration, Masur once again conducts the Gewandhausorchester in Brahms' 'Second Symphony'.