Contemplazione Alfredo Catalani
Jane Jones kicks off a new season of Classic FM Hall of Fame Full Works concerts to get you thinking about the pieces you will be voting for.
Tonight's concert begins with a brilliant recording of Brahms’ Academic Festival Overture. It was composed during the summer of 1880 as a musical "thank you" to the University of Breslau, which had awarded Brahms with an honorary doctorate the previous year. Marin Alsop conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
Tchaikovsky composed his Piano Concerto No. 1 during an intensive period of composition at the end of 1874, with the orchestrations then completed in the February of the following year. However, after this very productive period, Tchaikovsky evidently wasn’t happy: the work was updated some four years later and then revised again as late as 1889. All three movements of the concerto are sublimely romantic – with both a lower-case and an upper-case R. The expansive, sweeping opening movement is showy; the middle movement contains soulful melodies with some beautiful interplay between the soloist and orchestra; and the edge-of-your-seat finale is an electrifying thrill from start to finish.
J.S. Bach's Cantata No.140, ‘Wachet auf, ruft uns di stimme’, also known as Sleepers Wake, was composed in Leipzig in 1731. The cantata is scored for three soloists — soprano, tenor and bass. It's performed tonight by John Eliot Gardiner, pictured, with the English Baroque Soloists and the Monteverdi Choir.
Dvořák's Symphony No. 8 in G major was composed and orchestrated within a two-and-a-half-month period in 1889 and dedicated by the composer to 'the Bohemian Academy of Emperor Franz Joseph for the Encouragement of Arts and Literature, in thanks for my election.' The Eighth Symphony is performed not nearly as often as the more famous Ninth. It's a cheery work and draws its inspiration from the Bohemian folk music that Dvořák loved.
Johannes Brahms: Academic Festival Overture Opus 80
Marin Alsop conducts London Philharmonic Orchestra
Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky: Piano Concerto No.1 in Bb minor Opus 23
Piano: Boris Berezovsky
Dmitri Liss conducts Ural Philharmonic Orchestra
Johann Sebastian Bach: Cantata No.140 - Wachet auf, ruft uns di stimme
Soloists: Ruth Holton, Michael Chance, Anthony Rolfe Johnson, Stephen Varcoe
John Eliot Gardiner conducts English Baroque Soloists and the Monteverdi Choir
Antonin Dvořák: Symphony No.8 in G major Opus 88
Istvan Kertesz conducts London Symphony Orchestra