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Smooth Classics with Margherita Taylor 10pm - 1am
Vivaldi’s ‘Gloria’ and Beethoven’s Violin Concerto are among Jane Jones' favourites from the 2014 Classic FM Hall of Fame.
Tonight's concert opens with Finlandia by Jean Sibelius. He wrote this patriotic tone poem in 1899 as a protest against increasing censorship in his home country. The piece virtually shouted 'Russia out of Finland' for all those who were in the know to hear. The composer later reworked the central part of the piece into the Finlandia Hymn, with the words, 'Oh, Finland, behold your day is dawning.'
Vivaldi ’s jubilant Gloria in D is one of sacred music's most uplifting choral works - a piece of high drama and hidden performers.
Beethoven’s only Violin Concerto, which is now so firmly accepted as one of the greats of the repertoire, was something of a slow burner. Unlike many other pieces he wrote, it certainly didn’t become an instant hit. It was rattled off by Beethoven in a remarkably short space of time. He took just a few weeks to compose it in the winter of 1806, and it was premiered within days of its completion on 23 December. This was a fairly rushed affair. The soloist hadn’t had time to learn his part, so spent a good deal of the concert sight-reading. It’s hard to imagine Beethoven being too pleased with such an approach - but he may well have been pleased had he known that it would become such a favourite around the world.
Saint-Saens' Carnival of the Animals is one of the composer's most popular works, but he premiered his 'grand zoological fantasy' privately. It was written as a bit of fun for friends, and Saint-Saëns even requested that it was never published or performed throughout his lifetime as he thought the work detracted from his 'serious' image! Only 'The Swan' was published in his lifetime, but the 14 movement piece has now become a cornerstone of classical music.
Jean Sibelius: Finlandia
Osmo Vanska conducts the Lahti Symphony Orchestra
Ludwig van Beethoven: Violin Concerto in D major
Violin: Isabelle Faust
Claudio Abbado conducts Orchestra Mozart
Camille Saint-Saens: Carnival of the Animals
Soloist of the Orchestral Ensemble of Paris
Antonio Vivaldi: Gloria in D major
Richard Hickox conducts Collegium Musicum 90