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Stingray Classica
Sat. May. 14
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Offenbach - La Grande Duchesse de Gerolstein
In La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein by Jacques Offenbach, the authors of this comic opera mock the war on France's threshold. The charge against the powers, the army and the nobility is pointed but, to satisfy censorship, it is skilfully camouflaged by the grotesque costumes of an imaginary duchy and by some musical buffoonery of sparkling gaiety. And yet, at the time, no-one was fooled! Only Offenbach could pull off the trick of being adulated by those by whom he was so cynically inspired! A production by Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège. With conductor Cyril Englebert, Solists: Patricia Fernandez, Sébastien Droy, Lionel Lhote, Sophie Junker, Jean-Philippe Corre, Giovanni Iovino, Patrick Delcour, Roger Joakim and the Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège Orchestra and Chorus.
Gala from Berlin 2017
The same procedure as every year…but not quite. With Joyce DiDonato as guest star and a truly diverse and diverting program personally selected by Sir Simon Rattle to commemorate his last Gala from Berlin as chief conductor of the BPO, you can be sure that this concert was anything but conventional routine. Join Joyce DiDonato, the Berliner Philharmoniker and Sir Simon Rattle for virtuous and ravishing interpretations of Dvořák's Carnival, Stravinsky's Pas de deux from 'Apollon Musagète', Lieder by Richard Strauss, Brahms's Hungarian Dance No. 1, and three dance episodes from Leonard Bernstein's 'On the town', thus unofficially starting the “Bernstein at 100” celebrations of 2018.
Discovering Masterpieces - Brandenburg Concertos
This episode presents the Brandenburg Concertos by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750). Musical excerpts played by the Freiburger Barockorchester conducted by Gottfried von der Goltz. Bach's six Brandenburg Concertos rank among the undisputed favorites of all baroque fans. They have become a firm fixture in music education and an integral part of our international musical heritage. So what's their secret? The internationally acclaimed pianist and Bach expert Robert Levin provides an answer.
Johan de Meij - Symphony No. 1 “Lord of the Rings”
This concert is the result of the collaboration between the “Giuseppe Nicolini,” Conservatory of Piacenza, and the “Giuseppe Verdi,” Conservatory of Milan, as part of the project "MIlanoPIACEnza ... suonare insieme”. On the program are works by the Dutch conductor and composer Johan de Meij. His Symphony No. 1 for woodwind and brass orchestra is titled “Lord of the Rings” and is based on the famous trilogy by writer J. R. R Tolkien. The work exists of five movements, inspired by characters and passages from the story: Gandalf, Lothlórien, Gollum, Journey in the Dark and Hobbits. The symphony premiered in Brussels in 1988. In 2001, a symphonic version was recorded by the London Symphony Orchestra. This concert is recorded at the Sala dei Teatini of the Teatri di Piacenza in 2018. Directed by Pietro Tagliaferri.
Viardot - Five Songs
Olena Tokar (soprano) and Igor Grishin (piano) perform a lieder and piano program, recorded at Schinkel Pavillon in Berlin on March 30, 2020. The program opens with five songs by Pauline Viardot: 'Two Roses', 'On Georgia's Hills', 'Evening Song', 'The Gardener', and 'The Mermaid's Song'. Grishin performs some solo piano works: Franz Schubert's Impromptu, Op. 90, Nos. 2 & 3, and Alexander Scriabin's Piano Sonata No. 4, Op. 30. The program continues with Antonín Dvořák's Gypsy Songs, Op. 55, and closes with four songs by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Op. 57 No. 1, Op. 63 No. 2, Op. 38 No. 2, and Op. 47 No. 6.
Handel - Messiah, HWV 56
The Messiah (HWV 56) by Georg Frederich Handel, also known as “A New Sacred Oratorio”, tells the life and suffering of Christ: a story of passion, fire, and sacrifice. This is one of Handel's best-known works, which took only three weeks to compose this oratorio and its famous "Hallelujah". The work has immense popularity since its premiere in Dublin in 1742, and is often presented at Easter. This performance of the Dutch ensemble Ribattuta Musica under the direction of conductor Dick Duijst was filmed in the grand church of the city of Ermelo, the Netherlands, in 2016. The soloists are Elvire Beekhuizen (soprano), Rosina Fabius (viola), Oscar Verhaar (counter-tenor) Satriya Krisna (tenor), and Hans Voschezang (bass). Ribattuta Musica is a professional ensemble that delivers authentic performances based on current musical practices at the time of the composers.
A Tribute to Vienna
Chamber music ensemble The Philharmonics pays tribute to the music of Vienna in this March 9, 2011 concert from Vienna's Café Sperl. The ensemble, which consists of musicians from the Vienna Philharmonic and the Berlin Philharmonic, performs arrangements of five popular waltzes by Johann Straus II. Among them are Kaiser-Walzer, Op. 437, and Schatz-Walzer, Op. 418, from the operetta The Gypsy Baron. In May 1921, the likes of Arnold Schönberg, Alban Berg, and Anton Webern wrote these chamber music arrangements to raise funds for their Society for Private Musical Performances. Although both the concert and the auction of the scores were very successful, the Society eventually went under. In addition to these pieces by Strauss, The Philharmonics perform works by Fritz Kreisler, Leopold Godowsky, as well as The Philharmonics's first violinist, Tibor Kováč. The program comes to an end with Godowsky’s tribute to the city: Alt Wien.
Villa-Lobos - String Quartet No. 11
Quarteto Radamés Gnattali performs Heitor Villa-Lobos's String Quartet No. 11 at the Theatro Municipal in Rio de Janiero, Brasil. The ensemble was founded in 2006 and consists of Carla Rincón and Francisco Roa (violins), Fernando Thebaldi (viola), and Hugo Pilger (cello). The quartet, which specializes in Brazilian music, focuses on educational activities. Their recording of all of Villa-Lobos string quartets is a major achievement and was very well received by international music critics. Except for his Bachianas brasileiras, the performance of many of the Brazilian's compositions is limited to Latin America. Highly regarded as a composer, conductor and educator in his native country, Villa-Lobos has operas, symphonies, concertos, piano repertoire, choral music, and seventeen string quartets to his credit.
Behind the Scenes at the Zurich Opera House
The Zurich Opera House is one of the most renowned in Europe. Fifteen premieres are staged here every year - a significant achievement, when one considers just how much work goes into each individual production. In this exciting documentary, we go behind-the-scenes at the Zurich Opera House and follow the intensive progress of the new production of Gioachino Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia with Vesselina Kasarova in the role of Rosina. The film also shows preparations for other productions, such as a workshop for Richard Wagner's Siegfried directed by Robert Wilson, and a rehearsal for Igor Stravinsky's Le Sacre du Printemps with choreography by Heinz Spoerli. This film opens the curtain to understanding an opera house’s many exciting facets.
Brahms - Violin Concerto & Academic Ouverture
One of today’s most distinguished conductors, Franz Welser-Möst conducts The Cleveland Orchestra in a performance featuring works from the oeuvre of Johannes Brahms. The concert begins with the Academic Festival Overture, written in honor of the University of Breslau, which awarded the composer an honorary doctorate in philosophy. This is followed by Brahms only Violin Concerto (in D major), described by violinist Joseph Joachim, whom it was originally written for, as one of the four great German violin concerti. This performance features violin soloist Julia Fischer. It was recorded at Severance Hall in Cleveland, USA, in 2014.
Concerts in Quarantine: Songs and piano works
Olena Tokar (soprano) and Igor Grishin (piano) perform a lieder and piano program, recorded at Schinkel Pavillon in Berlin on March 30, 2020. The program opens with five songs by Pauline Viardot: 'Two Roses', 'On Georgia's Hills', 'Evening Song', 'The Gardener', and 'The Mermaid's Song'. Grishin performs some solo piano works: Franz Schubert's Impromptu, Op. 90, Nos. 2 & 3, and Alexander Scriabin's Piano Sonata No. 4, Op. 30. The program continues with Antonín Dvořák's Gypsy Songs, Op. 55, and closes with four songs by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Op. 57 No. 1, Op. 63 No. 2, Op. 38 No. 2, and Op. 47 No. 6.
Pierre Boulez - A life for music
The French musician and composer Pierre Boulez (1925-2016) is considered one of the most influential figures in twentieth-century music. In the documentary 'Pierre Boulez – A life of music' (2017), Reiner E. Moritz creates a personal portrait of the young and impatient artist who once impetuously suggested to blow up the opera houses in order to do away with stuffy traditions, yet later moved on to conduct the "Ring of the Century" in the very heart of traditional opera, Bayreuth, and became a prized guest conductor with the world´s greatest orchestras. The documentary includes fragments from the composer's rich oeuvre, and features rare photographs from the Boulez-Chevalier archive. The documentary is at its most personal when the maestro's family and friends reflect on his life. Boulez's younger brother Roger shares invaluable information about Pierre's early years, and the renowned pianist Daniel Barenboim opens up about his friend’s music and compositions.
Rachmaninoff & Dvořák Trios
The Valerius Ensemble, consisting of Eeva Koskinen (violin), René Geesing (cello) and Ingo Lulofs (piano) plays Rachmaninoff’s Trio élégiaque Nr. 1 and the Finale of Dvořák’s Piano Trio No.3, Op. 65. Rachmaninoff composed this Trio in 1892 at the age of 19. The work does not have an opus number and consists only of one movement, which is highly unusual for a Piano Trio. This concert was recorded at Muziekcentrum Enschede in the Netherlands on March 18, 2018.
Stravinsky - Symphony in Three Movements
Sir Simon Rattle conducts the Berliner Philharmonic during the 2008 edition of the Europakonzert, held in the renowned hall of the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow. The first edition of the Europakonzert was in 1991, and since then, the founding of the Berlin Philharmonic on May 1st in 1882 is annually celebrated with a concert in a European city of cultural significance. The orchestra opens with an outstanding performance of Stravinsky’s Symphony in Three Movements.
Jerusalem International Chamber Music Festival
Having achieved incredible success with consistently sold-out concerts, the Jerusalem International Chamber Music Festival is renowned for its exceptional repertoire of performances by top soloists who otherwise seldom share a stage. This program presents highlights of the 2008 edition, of which the theme centered on the exploration of the “national spirit” of music.
Paganini - Violin Concerto No. 1, Op. 6
Fabio Luisi conducts the Danish National Symphony Orchestra in a performance of two great works. Paganini’s Violin Concerto No. 1. is paired with Brahms’ dramatic symphonic debut, Symphony No.1. Paganini’s concerto dates from the mid-to-late 1810s, written as the composer was touring Italy with his remarkable violin technique. This piece is a quintessential expression of Paganini’s extraordinary skill and ability, demanding much from the soloist. It is also characterized by the notably operatic “bel canto” style adopted by many of the composer’s contemporaries, including Gioachino Rossini. This exceptional performance features the dazzling virtuosity of violinist In Mo Yang, winner of the 2015 Paganini Competition. It was recorded at the DR Koncerthuset in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2017.
Barati & Debargue perform Debussy, Brahms & Franck
Violinist Kristof Barati and Pianist Lucas Debargue pair for the first time in a duo concert at the 25th anniversary edition of the Swiss Verbier Festival in 2018. Although this was their inaugural collaboration, the two young artists found a perfect understanding around this romantic programme. The two featured works were written very few years apart from one another (Brahms’ first sonata for violin and piano in 1879 and Franck’s sonata in A in 1886). The Brahms sonata was recorded by Kristof Barati a few years ago, while Franck’s is known to be a favourite of Lucas Debargue. The virtuoso piano part suits his gigantic hands and the fantasy of the third movement his love for improvisation. The cyclic form and the many echoes between the piano and violin parts unite the two artists, like accomplices in possession of the best assets to bring in all the emotion these romantic works have to offer. The listener is suddenly in a position to re-discover the scores and cannot but join the admiration marks that escape from the audience in between the movements. A very moving performance which deserves its benchmark status.
Schubert - Piano Trio No. 2, Op. 100, D. 929
Ester Hoppe (violin), Christian Poltéra (cello) and Francesco Piemontesi (piano) perform Schubert's Piano Trio No. 2, Op. 100 (D. 929) during the International Chamber Music Festival in Bellinzona, Switzerland, in 2019. This trio was among the last compositions completed by Schubert and is dated November 1827. It was published late 1828, shortly before Schubert's death and first performed in January 1828 to celebrate the engagement of Schubert's friend Josef von Spaun. The second theme of the opening movement is based on a theme from the Trio of Schubert's Piano Sonata No. 18 (D. 894). The main theme of the second movement is used as a central musical theme in Kubrick's film Barry Lyndon (1975).
Stravinsky, Webern and Debussy
Today’s Brussels Philharmonic concert focuses on the diverse musical styles that characterized the first half of the 20th century. In addition to the impressionism of Claude Debussy's Jeux (1913), conductor Michel Tabachnik's ensemble focuses on one of the leading composers of modern music: Igor Stravinsky. His first ballet music, Firebird (1910), is a highlight of the concert. The concert opens with Anton Webern’s Five Pieces for Orchestra Op. 10 (1913). These five, ultra-short pieces are not thematically connected, nor do they include traditional formal plans or tonal relationships - prepare for a listening challenge!
Stingray Originals - Seljan Nasibli
Azerbaijan-born artist Seljan Nasibli moved to England at an early age, where she was encouraged to take up music. Although Nasibli chose to sing jazz, her Oxford teachers heard an operatic tendency in her voice and advised to train classically. Nasibli completed her studies at The Royal College of Music, where she graduated with a master's degree in Vocal Performance. In this episode of Stingray Originals, Nasibli performs three of Giacomo Puccini's most beautiful arias: 'Signore, ascolta!' and 'Tu, che di gel sei cinta' from the opera Turandot, and 'Quando m'en vo' (Musetta's Waltz) from the opera La bohème.
Debussy's Images Book II (No. 1-3)
German violinist Christian Tetzlaff and Swiss pianist Francesco Piemontesi bundle their forces in a concert program featuring works by Claude Debussy and César Franck, recorded at Schinkel Pavillon in Berlin on April 3, 2020. Piemontesi opens with several excerpts from Debussy's Images Book II: 'Cloches à travers les feuilles', 'Et la lune descend sur le temple qui fut', and 'Poissons d'or'. After, Piemontesi accompanies Tetzlaff in Franck's Violin sonata in A Major.
Prokofiev - Excerpts from Romeo & Julia, Op. 64
The beautiful Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg formed the background for the 1996 edition of the annual Europakonzert of the Berliner Philharmoniker. In honour of the Russian hosts, the concert opened with highlights from Prokofiev's 'Romeo and Juliet', followed by the Cavatina from Rachmaninoff's opera 'Aleko'. After the intermission, Kolja Blacher featured in the two 'Violin Romances' by Beethoven, followed by a performance of his 'Seventh Symphony'. The orchestra is led by maestro Claudio Abbado.
Barenboim: 50 years on stage
On August 19, 2000, the Teatro Colón was filled to the brim with spectators longing to hear Daniel Barenboim play the piano. Barenboim, who is currently best known as a conductor, started his career half a century ago as a child prodigy, playing his first piano recital at age 7. This concert celebrates the maestro's on-stage career. Only after the maestro had performed for a full three hours, including no less than 13 encores, the audience was willing to let him leave the stage: a special evening if ever there was one! The concert included Ludwig van Beethoven's Sonata No. 23 ‘Apassionata’, Frederic Chopin's Waltz in e minor, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Sonata in C major.
Nielsen - Commotio
Fabio Luisi conducts the Danish National Symphony Orchestra in this powerful performance taken from the 150th Anniversary celebrations of Denmark’s national composer, Carl Nielsen. Alongside Nielsen’s inscrutably ironic Symphony No. 6, this performance features world-renowned French pianist Lise de la Salle as soloist in Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 4. This lesser-known concerto saw three separate iterations throughout the composer’s life and is characterized by bold chromaticism and a distinctly Jazz-like quality. Luisi and de la Salle have prior experience with this piece, having previously performed and recorded it together. This performance was recorded at the DR Koncerthuset in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2017.