Alex James's Date Night - Saturday 1 November 2014, 7pm

Alex takes a look at all the important musical anniversaries coming up in this first week of November.

Alex kicks off tonight with the Prelude to The Mastersingers of Nuremburg by Wagner, premiered on this day in 1862 at the Leipzig Gewandhaus, with the composer himself on the podium.  

There'll also be music by the English songwriter Roger Quilter – born on this day in 1877 – and the Welsh composer William Matthias, who would have celebrated his 80th birthday today. 

Looking ahead to the rest of the week, Rimsky-Korsakov heads out on the high seas as a naval officer, Chopin leaves Warsaw for Vienna, and Chabrier's Espana is heard for the very first time.  

Plus – the very first play of Barber's Adagio for Strings, and the 200th birthday of the man who invented the saxophone.

Classic FM Apps

Get the Classic FM app for iPhone, iPad and Android - now with HD audio

Cat composer Alexander Livitsanos

This utterly adorable kitten is the ultimate distraction from work

chocolate bar musical taste

Can we guess your favourite chocolate bar from your favourite composer?

broken e-string violin

This clip captures the sheer horror of an E-string snapping halfway through a live radio broadcast