Symphony No.4 in A major Opus 90 (1) Felix Mendelssohn
There's a distinctly Austrian flavour to tonight's Full Works Concert with Jane Jones.
Tonight's concert opens with the great cellist Jacqueline du Pré playing Haydn's Cello Concerto No.2 in D major. The work was composed in 1783 for Antonín Kraft, a cellist in Prince Nikolaus's Esterházy Orchestra. It's an interesting work - it sounds more leisurely and lyrical than Haydn's first cello concerto but it is more technically difficult for the soloist.
The Austrian flavour continues with Johann Strauss II's Emperor Waltz. It was originally titled Hand in Hand and was composed for a symbolic 'toast of friendship' extended by Austria to Germany in 1889. Strauss' publisher, suggested the title Kaiser-Walzer since the title could allude to the ruler of either country and pander to the vanity of both of them.
The only non-Austrian in tonight's concert is Henry Litolff. The half-Scottish, half-Alsatian pianist left audiences spellbound with his magical performances from the age of 14. In order that he might continue to enchant concert-goers across Europe, he wrote himself a series of symphonies with a solo piano part. They were not quite concertos — and they weren't quite symphonies either. Instead, they were pieces that were specifically designed to make him sound great when he played them. The Concerto Sinfonique No.4 in D minor is just a joy of a work and is said to have inspired Liszt. So much so, in fact, that he dedicated his own piano concerto to Litolff.
The concert closes tonight with Mozart's Symphony No.34 in C major, known as the ‘Salzburg’. It was written in 1780 and features fanfares and flourishes that are typical of the 'festive symphony' or 'trumpet symphony', which was common in Austrian symphonic writing in C major. This is the first of Mozart's C major symphonies to exhibit this character, but he would revisit the style in his subsequent two works in this key, the 36th and 41st symphonies.
Josef Haydn: Cello Concerto No.2 in D major
Cello: Jacqueline du Pre
John Barbirolli conducts the London Symphony Orchestra
Johann Strauss II: Emperor Waltz
Christopher Warren-Green conducts the Johann Strauss Orchestra
Henry Litolff: Concerto Sinfonique No.4 in D minor
Piano: Peter Donohoe
Andrew Litton conducts the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Symphony No.34 in C major (‘Salzburg’)
Charles Mackerras conducts the Prague Chamber Orchestra