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Haydn - Orlando Paladino
For more than 25 years, René Jacobs has dedicated his life to baroque operas and works with the best ensembles for early music. On occasion of the 2009 Haydn Year the renowned Freiburger Barockorchester and outstanding baroque opera singers such as Marlis Petersen, Alexandrina Pendatchanska, Pietro Spagnoli and Tom Randle present Haydn’s most successful opera at the Berlin Staatsoper. ‘Orlando Paladino’, written in 1782, was Haydn’s most famous opera during his lifetime, with thirty performances in Esterháza in the first two years after its composition. The libretto, a ’drama eroicomico’, gives scope to Haydn’s frequently puckish sense of humour, as well as his inventive melodic expression. Most semi-serious operas of the period typically inserted comic characters into an essentially serious story but Haydn expanded the comedy even into the more serious scenes.
Gala from Berlin 1997 - A Salute to Carmen
The 1997 Berlin Gala was dedicated to Georges Bizet’s Carmen with all works somehow connected to the opera. Featuring star soloists like Anne Sofie von Otter, Roberto Alagna, Bryn Terfel, Véronique Gen and Stella Doufexis, the Berliner Philharmoniker and Italian conductor Claudio Abbado, the program included selections from Carmen itself. Sergei Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Pablo de Sarasate’s Carmen Fantasy op. 25, Maurice Ravel’s Rhapsodie Espagnol, Manuel de Falla’s Ritual Fire Dance, and Johannes Brahms’s Hungarian Dance No. 5 in G minor. The other soloists of this evening are Gil Shaham (violin) and Mikhail Pletnev (piano).
Domaine Forget - Concert 2016
The ensemble Les Violons du Roy, led by Jean-Francois Rivest, performs a captivating concert of early and late classical music. Discover Franz Schubert's Overture for Orchestra in B-flat major, D.470 and his Symphony No. 5 in B flat major, D. 485. Schubert composed these pieces when he was 20-year-old in September and October 1816. Pianist Benedetto Lupo joins Les Violons du Roy for a classical intermezzo: a sparkling rendition of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 25 in C Major, K. 503. This atmospheric performance was recorded at the Canadian festival of Domaine Forget in Saint-Irénée in 2016.
Europakonzert 1998 - Stockholm
Europakonzert has been a tradition of the Berlin Philharmonic since 1991. Every year, the musicians commemorate the anniversary of the orchestra's founding (May 1st, 1882) and celebrate their heritage from the Old World. The Europakonzert of 1998 was held in a unique location: The Vasa museum in Stockholm which displays a 17th-century ship that capsized and sank during its maiden voyage in 1628. The ship measures 69 meters in length, 12 meters in width, and 1.210 tons in weight. It offers the perfect backdrop for the Berlin Philharmonic. Under the baton of Claudio Abbado, they perform melodies in tune with the maritime surroundings, such as the Overture to Richard Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's symphonic fantasia The Tempest. The program also features Claude Debussy's Nocturnes. For the concert's main piece, discover a memorable and powerful impression of Giuseppe Verdi’s Quattro pezzi sacri. The orchestra is joined by the Swedish Radio Choir and the Eric Ericson Chamber Choir.
Glanert - Requiem for Hieronymus Bosch
The most famous resident of 's-Hertogenbosch (' s-Hertogenbosch, in Dutch) is without a doubt the legendary painter Hieronymus Bosch, who portrayed medieval life in his work full of symbolism, fantasy and mystery. The city of 's-Hertogenbosch celebrates the 500th anniversary of the artist's death in spectacular fashion with the international Bosch 500 event. For the occasion, Bosch 500 commissioned Detlev Glanert, composer of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Requiem for soloists, choir, organ and orchestra. The resulting composition translates into music the demonic nature and unique texture of Bosch's canvases. Glanert combines the traditional requiem texts with excerpts from the Carmina Burana collection of manuscripts, so that each movement of the Requiem is accompanied by a poem dealing with the seven deadly sins. This concert delivered to the Cathedral of St. John of 's-Hertogenbosch by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and the Dutch Radio Choir is conducted by Markus Stenz, and stars Aga Mikolaj, Ursula Hesse von den Steinen, Gerhard Siegel, Christof Fischesser, David Wilson-Johnson, and Leo van Doeselaar. The composition translates the demonic nature of Bosch’s paintings with textual counterparts into music.
CMIM - Finals - Gemma Summerfield
Sebastian Wybrew accompanies soprano Gemma Summerfield (UK, 1990) during the finals of the Art Song competition of the Concours musical international de Montréal of 2018 (CMIM). The program features three works by Sibelius: Vilse, Op. 17/4, Flickan kom ifrån sin älsklings mote, Op. 37/5 and Se’n har jag ej frågat mera, Op. 17/1. Followed by Roger Quilter’s Seven Elizabethan Lyrics, Op. 12 and Elizabeth Maconchy’s Sun, Moon and Stars. Summerfield closes the competition with 2 Aquarelles from Debussy’ Ariettes oubliées (L. 60) and Ruhe, meine Seele and Cäcilie from Vier Lieder, Op. 27 by Richard Strauss. Founded in 2002, the CMIM is an annual event that draws thousands of spectators to concert halls, as well as listeners on the radio and the web. The competition seeks to discover and support musicians who demonstrate exceptional mastery of their art. It’s the only international competition in North America to be held annually and to present three disciplines (voice-violin-piano) in a three-year rotation.
Sons of Vienna: Part 5 - Dynasty of Dance
The six-part series Sons of Vienna explores stories through the eyes of musicians, professors and musicologists. It portrays extraordinary composers who were active in the cultural city of Vienna and deserve the label of genius. In A Dynasty of Dance (Part 5) we follow the lives and work of the Strauss dynasty. Johann Strauss, an orphan at seven and bookbinder until his mid-twenties, introduced the first dance craze the world had ever seen. He fathered three composers: Johann II “The Waltz King,” and Josef and Eduard. Strauss Sr. tried to discourage his sons from following in his footsteps. He and Johann II fought continually until the father’s death. Are Johann II’s later works a form of filial remorse? Strauss’ music is often dismissed as “light music,” but no one can deny the popularity of the Viennese Waltz, even today. The magical city of Vienna became the birthplace of yet one more important musical contribution.
Legato - World of the Piano
We live in a "renaissance of the piano”, as the New York Times has recently put it. With virtuosic flair and an eagerness to expand the repertoire, a new generation of pianists has revitalized the instrument’s appeal. In addition to the usual classics, they perform formerly scorned works or discover neglected composers. Legato is a series dedicated to presenting some of this new movement's most fascinating pianists – their individual approaches, their fresh ideas and their music. Each episode portrays an artist and shows an aspect of the world of the piano. The sum of these portraits provides viewers with an overall picture of the art of the pianist. Montréal native Marc-André Hamelin is internationally renowned for his musical virtuosity and refined pianism. The Times described one of his performances as “ultimate perfection”. He plays works by Haydn (Piano sonata in E major), Chopin (Piano sonata No. 3), Debussy (‘Préludes’, book two), Hamelin (Etude No. 7), as well as two short pieces by Gershwin (‘Do, Do, Do’ and ‘Liza’).
Johan de Meij - Echoes of San Marco & Fellini
This concert is the result of the collaboration between the Giuseppe Nicolini Conservatory of Piacenza and the Giuseppe Verdi of Milan as part of the project "MIlanoPIACEnza ... suonare insieme.” On the program are works by the Dutch conductor and composer Johan de Meij. “Echoes of San Marco” is a tribute to the Venetian Renaissance composer Giovanni Gabrieli (1555-1612). Echoes of San Marco opens with a quote from Gabrieli’s “Canzon Septimi Toni” from the “Sacre Sinfoniae”, and is just like the original work composed for two choirs of brass instruments. “Fellini” is composed for solo saxophone and orchestra and is a tribute to Italian film director Federico Fellini (1920-1993). De Meij composed the work for saxophone player Hans de Jong, who during this concert is dressed as a melancholic clown to intensify the dreamy and imaginary worlds present in Fellini’s films. This concert is recorded at the Sala dei Teatini of the Teatri di Piacenza in 2018. Directed by Pietro Tagliaferri.
Beethoven - Symphony No. 6 'Pastorale'
Beethoven composed his Symphony No. 6 between 1802 and 1808. Nicknamed Pastorale, this piece is one of the few examples of program music in the work of the German composer. Unlike other Beethoven symphonies, this work has five rather than four movements, each with a programmatic title. This performance of Symphony No. 6 was performed in 2017 by the Sinfonia Rotterdam Orchestra, under the direction of Conrad van Alphen, at St. Willibrord Basilica in Hulst, The Netherlands.
Riccardo Chailly conducts Mendelssohn
Riccardo Chailly’s inaugural concert as Kapellmeister of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra captures the full atmosphere of a unique musical occasion. The concert centers round composer Felix Mendelssohn, who founded the Gewandhaus Orchestra in 1743. It includes an overwhelming performance of Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 2, Lobgesang with its celebratory choral last movement, as well as the ever-popular overture A Midsummer Night’s Dream with outstanding vocal soloists including Anne Schwanewilms and Peter Seiffert. The Gewandhaus Orchestra can look back with pride at its 250-year history. It has made music history and evolved into one of the world’s best-known and most renowned orchestras.
Mozart - Piano Concerto No. 27, KV 595
Soloist Aleksander Madzar and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra directed by Andre Previn join forces in a performance of Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 27, KV 595, recorded at Vienna's Schönbrunn palace. In 1791, with his life cruelly and rapidly ending, Mozart once again turned to the compositional style which reflected his personality: the concerto for piano and orchestra. His last piano concerto, which turned out to be an uplifting composition, regales its audience with a lyrical children's song, invoking the joys of youth and springtime.
A Night in Vienna
A Night in Vienna recreates the magical atmosphere of 19th century Viennese ballrooms. In the breathtaking surroundings of Vienna's Hofburg Palace, the Wiener Akademie period orchestra, conducted by Alfred Eschwe, plays some of the Strauss family's and Joseph Lanner's favorite pieces, including "The Beautiful Blue Danube", "Tritsch-Tratsch-Polka", and the "Radetzky March". Former residence of the Habsburg dynasty, the Hofburg contained the apartments of Emperor Franz Joseph and Empress Elizabeth. A Night in Vienna features soloist Lesley Garrett, the most popular soprano from the UK. The spirit of the Strauss era is perfectly recreated by the addition of waltz dancers adorned with historical costumes. This concert was presented in 2004, under the direction of David Amphlett.
CMIM - Semi Finals - John Brancy
Peter Dugan accompanies baritone John Brancy (USA, 1988) during the semi-finals of the Art Song competition of the Concours musical international de Montréal of 2018 (CMIM). The program features Des Fräuleins Liebeslauschen (D. 698) and Erlkönig (D. 328) by Schubert, Auf einer Burg, Op. 39/7 by Schumann and Fauré’s Dans la nymphée, Op. 106/5. Followed by Sibelius’ Under strandens granar, Op. 13/1, Frank Bridge’s Love Went a-Riding (H. 114) and The Green-Eyed Dragon by Wolseley Charles. Founded in 2002, the CMIM is an annual event that draws thousands of spectators to concert halls, as well as listeners on the radio and the web. The competition seeks to discover and support musicians who demonstrate exceptional mastery of their art. It’s the only international competition in North America to be held annually and to present three disciplines (voice-violin-piano) in a three-year rotation.
Europa Konzert 2004 – Athens
Europakonzert 2004 was held in Athens, Greece. This concert featured the Berliner Philharmoniker performing live at the ancient Herodes Atticus Theatre along with an interesting combination of conductor and soloist - Sir Simon Rattle wielding the baton as pianist Daniel Barenboim plays Johannes Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 1 and Arnold Schoenberg's arrangement of Brahms' Piano Quartet No 1. The Athens concert marked a double première: it was the first Europakonzert under the direction of the new chief conductor, as well as the first time Rattle and Barenboim appeared together. The Odeon of Herodes Atticus, an amphitheatre built in 161 AD in memory of Herodes Atticus’ wife, is situated on the slope of the Acropolis. With a seating capacity of at least 5,000 spectators, it was reputed to be the finest theatre in all of Greece.
The Boy with the Wig: Kids on Mozart
The Boy with the Wig - Kids on Mozart explores children’s fascination with the composer. The 30-minute film by Claus Wischmann features boys and girls aged between eight and eleven recounting his life through humour and serious interpretations of Mozart’s biography. Discover Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart through the eyes of children.
Prokofiev - Betrothal in a Monastery
Deliberate confusion in 18th-century Seville which is entangled with three marriages blessed by the monks of the monastery. After performances at the famous 'Stars of the White Nights' Festival held in St. Petersburg and the 1991 - 92 festival dedicated to Prokofiev, this outstanding new staging of Betrothal in a Monastery was recorded at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, brilliantly performed by the Kirov Opera Company and Artistic Director and Chief Conductor Valery Gergiev.
Haydn - Symphony No. 45 'Farewell'
Under the direction of Conrad van Alphen, the Sinfonia Rotterdam Orchestra performs Haydn's Symphony No. 45 at the Nieuwe Kerk (New Church) in The Hague. This piece is nicknamed "Farewell" because of a funny anecdote. Haydn and his musicians stayed every year from May to October at the magnificent Esterháazy Palace, at the request of Prince Nicholas. In early November 1772, the prince announced his intention to remain at the palace for two more months. The musicians then told Kapellmeister Haydn their disagreement with this forced extension of their stay. The solution proposed by Haydn was to compose a piece delivering a clear message: at the end of the last movement of the Symphony, the musicians were called to blow the candles on their lectern and leave the room one after the other. Prince Nicholas understood the message; the next day a car was waiting for the musicians to take them home.