Alex James's Date Night - Saturday 21 February 2015

Alex James continues to explore all the big dates, anniversaries and ‘on this day’ events in the classical music world over the week ahead.

Wilhelmsburg Castle organ Schmalkalden Germany

Tonight, Alex begins by celebrating a couple of French composers, both born on this day: the organ maestro Charles-Marie Widor and Leo Delibes, composer of ballets, operas and the famous Flower Duet. 

Listen again to this week's show: 

We’ll also hear a song that Schubert wrote on 21 February 1874 – apparently spurred on by the consumption of a rather excessive amount of red wine.

Looking ahead over the rest of the week, Alex tells the story of the premiere performance of Tchaikovsky ’s Symphony No.4, uncovers money troubles for the composer Carl Maria von Weber, and celebrates the 330th anniversary of the birth of George Frideric Handel.   

There's also a Peer Gynt premiere for Grieg , the story behind Saint-SaensCarnival of the Animals , and the first public performance from a then seven-year-old Chopin .