20/21

I Want Magic!

Renée Fleming 001PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, August 4

William Bolcom’s Symphony No.5 continues to attract attention. It was dedicated to the Symphony manager at the Philadelpia Orchestra and contains some exciting as well as elegaic music.

Soprano Renée Fleming and James Levine collaborated on a fantastic recording of 20th century opera arias which have helped to keep these great works in the forefront. Fleming’s intention was to pay tribute to the American sopranos of the generation before her who helped to make this operas part of our musical heritage.

We continue to present pianist Maki Namekawa and the complete Etudes of Philip Glass. Plus music by Frank Bridge and Alberto Ginastera.

 

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.11 Maki Namekawa
William Bolcom Symphony No.5 1992 Dennis Russell Davies, American Composers Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.12 2007 Maki Namekawa
Alberto Ginastera Cello Concerto No.1 1968 Max Bragado, Orchestra of Castile and Leon
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.13 2007 Maki Namekawa
Frank Bridge String Quartet 1927 String Quartet No.3
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.14 Maki Namekawa
Carlisle Floyd Susannah, Ain’t it A Pretty Night 1955 Renee Fleming, James Levine, Met Opera Orchestra
Carlisle Floyd Susannah, The trees on the mountains 1955 Renee Fleming, James Levine, Met Opera Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.15 Maki Namekawa
Gian Carlo Menotti The Medium, Monica’s Waltz 1946 Renee Fleming, James Levine, Met Opera Orchestra

Summer Music

Philip Glass 001PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, July 28

Began last week, 20♪21 continues presenting pianist Maki Namekawa in the Complete Piano Etudes of Philip Glass. We alternate between the Etudes and larger scale works. The 2015 Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music is quickly approaching. Among the many composers it will present this year are Mason Bates, Christopher Rouse, and Philip Glass.

 

We’ll hear Anne Akiko Meyers perform the Violin Concerto of Mason Bates from 2012 with Leonard Slatkin and the London Symphony Orchestra. The Houston Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Christoph Eschenbach presents the Symphony No.2 of Christopher Rouse. There’s also music by Stravinsky, Ravel, and Jersild.

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.5 1994 Maki Namekawa
Igor Stravinsky Symphony in 3 Movements 1945 Neeme Jarvi, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.6 1994 Maki Namekawa
Mason Bates Violin Concerto 2012 Anne Akiko Meyers, Leonard Slatkin, London Symphony
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.7 1994 Maki Namekawa
Christopher Rouse Symphony No.2 1994 Christoph Eschenbach, Houston Symphony Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.8 1994 Maki Namekawa
Jorgen Jersild Three Romantic Songs 1971 Danish National Choir
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.9 1994 Maki Namekawa
Maurice Ravel Une Barque sur L’ocean 1906 Pierre Boulez, The Cleveland Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.10 Pie Maki Namekawa

Heavenly Light

Gustav Mahler 1860-1911

Gustav Mahler 1860-1911

PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, July 21

The Symphony No.4 of Gustav Mahler uses a song, “Das himmlische Leben” (Heavenly Light) from a collection of children’s poems called “Das knaben Wunderhorn” (The Boy’s Magic Horn) for the main content of its fourth and final movement. The Fourth Symphony was Mahler’s first to appear in the 20th century. Although his music received performances in Europe and America, it never gained the affection of the general orchestra-going public until the 50s and 60s with such great champions as Bruno Walter (a student of Mahler) and later Frintz Reiner, Leonard Bernstein and others. We’ll hear a recording featuring Frederica von Stade with the Vienna Philharmonic conducted by Claudio Abbado.

The Hungarian String Quartet presents Bela Bartok’s String Quartet No.6 and clarinetist Laura Ardan joins Paul Gambill and the Nashville Chamber Orchestra for Aaron Copland’s Clarinet Concerto.

Between all the selections, we will begin presenting the Piano Etudes of Philip Glass performed by Maki Namekawa.

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.1 1994 Maki Namekawa
Gustav Mahler Symphony No.4 1901 Frederica von Stade, Claudio Abbado, Vienna Philharmonic
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.2 1994 Maki Namekawa
Bela Bartok String Quartet No.6 1939 Hungarian String Quartet
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.3 1994 Maki Namekawa
Aaron Copland Clarinet Concerto 1947 Laura Ardan, Paul Gambill, Nashville Chamber Orchestra
Philip Glass Piano Etude No.4 1994 Maki Namekawa
Louis Karchin Ricercare 1992 Curtis Macomber

 

New Horizons: The Pluto Program: Two

7-8-15_pluto_color_new_nasa-jhuapl-swriPROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, July 14

On this day, the New Horizons space craft will have reached its closest approach to the dwarf planet Pluto and its large moon Charon. It’s now become known as the second red planet in the Solar System. It’s relationship with Charon has it also being defined as a binary planet system. It’s great to see our understanding of the universe expand in just a matter of days. Congratulations to all the scientists who worked on this project.

To celebrate this achievement, we’re offering a second program devoted to music which is thematically linked to space travel or certainly suggests it. We’ll hear perhaps the one work so closely associated with space travel based on its use in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. Richard Strauss’ tone poem “Also Spracht Zarathustra.” Although the work was composed in 1896, it clearly belongs in this program.

Finnish composer Einouhani Rautavaara’s Symphony No.8 “The Journey,” fits perfectly too. Plus more great music from the movies and elsewhere.

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Alan Hovhaness Celestial Fantasy 1944 Kerry Stratton, Slovak Radio Symhony Orchestra
Johann Sebastian Bach/Stokowski Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor 1935 Stokowski Symphony Orchestra
Richard Strauss Also Spracht Zarathustra 1896 Silverstein, William Steinberg, Boston Symphony
Ralph Vaughan Williams The Infinite Shining Heavens 1904 Gerald Finley, Stephen Ralls
Ralph Vaughan Williams Whithher, must I wander? 1904 Gerald Finley, Stephen Ralls
Ralph Vaughan Williams I have Trod the Upward and the Downward Slope 1904 Gerald Finley, Stephen Ralls
Maurice Jarré Jacobs Ladder, Between Two Worlds 1990 Maurice Jarré, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Einouhani Rautavaara Symphony No.8 “The Journey” 1999 Leif Segerstam, Helsinki Symphony Orchestra
Daniel Schnyder Le monde miniscule 1995 David Jolly
John Tavener Eternity’s Sunrise 1997 Paul Goodwin, Academy of Ancient Music
Jacob Druckman Prism 1980 Leif Segerstam, Helsinki Symphony Orchestra
Jon Leifs Hekla 1964 Leif Segerstam, Helsinki Symphony Orchestra
Alan Silvestri Contact 1997 Alan Silvestri, Hollywood Studio Orchestra

New Horizons: The Pluto Program: One

New Horizons Spacecraft

New Horizons Spacecraft

PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, July 7

In anticipation of our first look at the planet Pluto, we selected music which will transport you to the edge of our Solar System. Included in the program is probably the most likely work — Gustav Holst’s “The Planets.”  Andrzej Panufnik’s “Arbor Cosmica” will teach us a new language in space travel. Several selections for the cinema are also included: the late James Horner’s score to “The Rocketeer,” and two selections by John Williams, “Star Wars, Main Theme” and “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.”

We uncovered so much music, the program will continue next week — the day the New Horizons space craft is scheduled to “phone home.”

 

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
James  Horner The Rocketeer 1991 Bill Broughton, Orchestra of the Americas
Vernon Handley The Planets, Op.32 1918 Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Robert  Ceely Ontogeny 2013 Fixed Media
John Williams Close Encounters of the Third Kind 1977 Zubin Mehta, Los Angeles Philharmonic
Andrzej Panufnik Arbor Cosmica 1983 Andrzej Panufnik, New York Chamber Symphony
John Williams Star Wars Main Theme 1975 Zubin Mehta, Los Angeles Philharmonic
Dmitri Shostakovich Passacaglia 1934 Christopher Herrick
Richard Strauss Capriccio, Moonlight Music 1942 State Orchestra of Victoria, Simone Young

Beautiful Benefactors

Franghiz Ali-Zadeh

Franghiz Ali-Zadeh

PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, June 30

Where would classical music be without the generous support of citizens who use their financial resources to create new art. The program contains works commissioned by artists for artists and works that came into being because somebody cared enough to ask a leading composer to write something for them.

We’ll hear the Kronos Quartet perform works by Terry Riley and Franghiz Ali-Zaden. We’ll hear Sergei Prokofiev’s Left Hand Piano Concerto (No.4) paid for by Paul Wittgenstein who later said it was unplayable. Ho hum.

Plus Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring, a work paid for by Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge as was Bela Bartok’s String Quartet No.5.

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Bela Bartok String Quartet No.5 1934 Hungarian String Quartet
Jacques Ibert Louisville Concerto 1953 Louis Frémaux, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Serge Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.4 1931 Yefim Bronfman, Zubin Mehta, Israel Philharmonic
Igor Stravinsky Dumbarton Oaks 1937 Colin Davis, English Chamber Orchestra
Aaron Copland Appalachian Spring Suite 1944 Paul Gambill, Nashville Chamber Orchestra
Franghiz Ali-Zadeh Mugam Sayagi 1993 Kronos Quartet
Terry Riley Half-Wolf Dances Mad in Moonlight 1985 Kronos Quartet

Hail Summer, Hail Britannia

William Walton (1902-1983)

William Walton (1902-1983)

PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, June 23

Celebrate summer with 20th century music written by British composers. The Endellion String Quartet performs Walton’s String Quartet in A minor. Sir Adrian Boult conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra in his classic recording of Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Symphony No.9 composed in 1957 when he was 86 years old.

We’ll also hear Peter Maxwell Davies Strathclyde Concerto No.4 for Clarinet and Orchestra. The King’s Singers will perform Geoffry Poole’s Wymondham Chants and John Tavener’s The Lamb. Plus much more including James Judd leading the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra in Frank Bridge’s Summer.

 

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Frank  Bridge Summer 1915 James Judd, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra
Edward Elgar Introduction and Allegro 1905 Nigel Kennedy, Vernon Handley, London Philharmonic
Ralph Vaughan Williams Symphony No.9 in E minor 1958 Adrian Boult, London Philharmonic Orchestra
William Walton String Quartet in A minor 1947 Endellion String Quartet
Peter Maxwell-Davies Strathclyde Concerto No.4 for Clarinet and orchestra 1990 Peter Maxwell-Davies, Scottish Chamber Orchestra
Geoffrey Poole Wymondham Chants 1970 King’s Singers
John Tavener The Lamb 1982 King’s Singers

 

Répons: a single voice alternates with many

83569318PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, June 16

Several weeks ago, composer/conductor Pierre Boulez identified what he thought were the 10 most important works of the 20th century. Over the coarse of the past ten weeks, 20♪21 has presented all of them. We conclude this series with a work by Boulez himself. It’s called “Répons” and refers to the medieval form of a single voice alternating with a chorus. “Répons” calls for a six soloists playing specific instruments, a small ensemble (strings, winds, brass), and an electro-acoustic system of a computer and loud speakers.

Also on the program are compositions which look back in time including Howard Hanson’s Rhythmic Variations on Two Ancient Hymns and Paul Creston’s Gregorian Chant for String Orchestra. We’ll also hear Janet Baker in Respighi’s La Sensitiva and Bohuslav Martinu’s delightful Piano Quartet No.1.

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Bohuslav Martinu Piano Quartet No.1 1942 Australian Chamber Music Festival
Paul Creston Gregorian Chant for Strings 1936 Arthur Lief, New York Chamber Orchestra
Ottorino Respighi La Sensitiva 1915 Janet Baker, Richard Hickox, City of London Sinfonia
Bedrich Wiedermann Impetuoso 1912 Nicolas Kynaston
Charles Wuorinen Arabia Felx 1973 Charles Wuorinen, Group for Contemporary Music
Pierre Boulez Repons 1981 Pierre Boulez, Ensemble InterConemporain
Howard Hanson Rhythmic Variations on Two Ancient Hymns 194? Kenneth Schermerhorn, Nashville Symphony Orchestra

Sinfonia italiana

Luciano Berio (1925-2003)

Luciano Berio (1925-2003)

PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, June 9

In his “Sinfonia,” avant garde composer Luciano Berio called for a large orchestra and eight amplified voices is still his most widely known composition. It’s one of Pierre Boulez’ top ten from the 20th century and presented here with Ricardo Chailly conducting the Royal Concertgebouw Philharmonic with the voices of Electric Phoenix.

Another featured work by Italian and Italian American composers is John Corigliano’s film score from the 1998 movie, The Red Violin. It features violinist Joshua Bell with Esa-Pekka Salonen conducting the Philharmonia Orchestra. “Scherzo,” David Del Tredici’s piano four hands work from 1960 is also on the program.

There’s also a Harp Concerto by Nino Rota, a cello sonata by Alfredo Casella and several Intermezzos from popular early 20th century operas.

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari Jewels of the Madonna, Intermezzo 1911 Neemi Jarvi, Gothenburg Symphony
Nino Rota Concerto for Harp and Orchestra 1947 Luisa Prandina, Marzio Conti, I Virtuosi Italiani
Franceso Cilea Adriana Lecourvreur, Intermezzo 1902 Neemi Jarvi, Gothenburg Symphony
Alfredo Casella Cello Sonata No.2 in C, Op.45 1926 Andrea Favalessa, Maria Semeraro
David Del Tredici Scherzo 1960 Robert Helps, David Del Tredici
Luciano Berio Sinfonia 1969 Electric Phoenix, Ricardo Chailly, Royal Concertgebouw
Giacomo Puccini Suor Angelica, Intermezzo 1918 Neemi Jarvi, Gothenburg Symphony
Giancarlo Menotti The Medium, Monica’s Waltz 1946 Renée Fleming, James Levine, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra
John Corigliano The Red Violin 1998 Joshua Bell, Esa Pekka Salonen, Philharmonia Orchestra

Erwartung: An Evening of Mystery and Fantasy

Erwartung 001PROGRAM AIRS:

7 p.m., Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Is it a dream? Why is she out wandering in the forest? How did her lover get out there? Who killed him? Was it … ?

Arnold Schoenberg’s monodrama was composed in 1909 but it wasn’t given its premiere until 1924. The ambiguity of its content and its new musical language were largely a reason for Pierre Boulez to chose it as one of his ten important works of the 20th century. The astonishing vocal range and color of Jessye Norman’s voice with support from the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and its music director James Levine make it the definitive recording of this haunting work.

Also on the program are Rebecca Clarke’s Sonata for Viola and Piano, a work that tied for first place in arts patron Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge’s competition of 1919. The jury broke the tie by giving the prize to Ernest Bloch. It’s an astonishing work by an under-appreciated composer and performer. We’ll hear violist Hillary Herndon.

Arthur Benjamin Jamaican Rumba 1936 Isaac Stern, Milton Katims, Columbia Symphony Orchestra
Anatoli Liadov Kikimora, Op.63 1910 Evgeny Svetlanov, USSR Symphony Orchestra
Rebecca Clarke Sonata for Viola and Piano 1919 Hillary Herndon, Weichun Bernadette Lo
Arnold Schoenberg Erwartung 1909 Jessye Norman, James Levine, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra
Sergei Prokofiev Piano Sonata No.8 in B-flat major, Op.84 1944 Andrei Gavrilov
Alfred Schnittke Cello Concerto No.2 1990 Mstislav Rostropovich, Seiji Ozawa, London Symphony Orchestra
Lei Liang Winged Creatures 2006 Takae Ohnishi, Kate Hatmaker, Jeff Zehngut, Chia Ling chien