Musica della sera
Thursdays on KUSP, 7:00-9:30pm
Hosted this week by Nicholas Mitchell
As a tribute to English pianist Bernard Roberts, who passed away last November, we will feature his performance of Piano Sonata No. 7 in D major, Opus 10, No. 3 as part of our continuing series of the complete Beethoven piano sonata. Roberts was known for his distinctive treatment of the whole cycle of 32 Beethoven sonatas.
My cohost Meera joins me as we continue our Spring Membership Drive. We hope you will consider a pledge in support of public radio and locally produced classical music programming. Viva la personal touch! Call: 1-888-777-1507*, or pledge online.
An inordinate number of listener requests. I’ll see if I can fit them all in: Lou Harrison, Anton Webern, Borodin.
Update: Serendipity and intrepidity, an example of the personal service you get from your friendly neighborhood KUSP disc jockey. Responding to a request for Borodin’s tone poem, In the Steppes of Central Asia from a loyal KUSP listener, who just happened to be Meera Collier-Mitchell in this case, I realized we didn’t have a recording in our personal collection, or, as far as I knew, in the station library, so, on the day of the show, with the limited time my place of employ allows for lunch, I headed down to the local record store, thinking, “Wouldn’t it be great if I found this piece along with another Borodin favorite that I don’t have a recording of, The Polovetsian Dances”. I allowed myself to believe there was a reasonable chance.
Step One: Check the Borodin section. Strike One: Empty!
Step Two: Check the Mussorgsky section. Maybe Steppes is included to fill out a recording of Pictures at an exhibition. Nice try, but no beans.
Step Three: Check the orchestral anthologies. Oy, with several rows of discs, and the composers not readily visible, I pored through them all; again, nada. One orchestral arrangement of a Borodin string quartet movement. Close, no stogie.
Step Four: Untrounced by strike three, I began to look through the small sections the store has for individual conductors. I know, what are the chances? I’d pretty much given up by this point. But what the hey, let’s see. Claudio Abbado, Von Karajan, Solti: zip, zip, zip…and then, Leonard Bernstein. Whoa, what’s this?! “Favorite Russian Spectaculars’, part of the Great Performances series, and the first two tracks: In the Steppes of Central Asia and The Polovetsian Dances!
The moral: Never give up hope! (Well, maybe you need to draw the line somewhere: once in a while my mad persistence gets me in trouble.)
I’m a little sad that record store moments like this one are not long for this world, what with the multiplicity of new media options. That’s exactly why I am documenting it here: future anthropologists will have an idea of what it was like in the olden days, that delicious eureka satisfaction of a hard won find.
I honored Meera’s request, and we listen to Steppes on the show. There wasn’t time to play the Polovetsian Dances, but I think I’ll fit in to my next show two weeks hence.
I like to think our passion for bringing you quality classical music pays off. We had a wonderful show of support from our listeners during the pledge drive. Warm thanks to everyone of you who contributed and said such nice things about us and the show when you did.
|Approx. Time||Composer||Selection||Performers||Record Title||Label|
|7:00||Händel||Flute Sonata in F Major, Op.1, No.11||Jean-Pierre Rampal, flute; Robert Veyron-Lacroix, harpsichord||Händel: Flute Concertos & Sonatas||Erato|
|Luigi Rossi||Lasciate Averno (from Orfeo)||Paul Elliott, tenor; The London Early Music Group; James Tyler, conductor||17th Century Bel Canto||Hyperion|
|Domenico Cimarosa||Sonata in C-Sharp Minor; Sonata in A Major||Julian Bream, guitar||Julian Bream, My Favorite Albums, Disc 1: The Art of Julian Bream||RCA|
|7:20||Lou Harrison||String Quartet Set||Kronos Quartet||Music of Lou Harrison||CRI|
|Alexander Borodin||In the Steppes of Central Asia||New York Philharmonic Orchestra; Leonard Bernstein, conductor||Favorite Russian Spectaculars||CBS|
|8:00||Debussy||Reverie; Golliwogg’s Cakewalk||Julian Bream and John Williams, guitar||Julian Bream, My Favorite Albums, Disc 9: Julian Bream & John Williams: Live||RCA|
|8:20||Beethoven||Sonata No. 7 in D Major, Opus 10, No.3||Bernard Roberts, piano||Beethoven: The Complete Piano Sonatas, Disc 5||Nimbus Records|
|Lennon/McCartney (arr. Cathy Berberian)||Ticket to Ride||Cathy Berberian, soprano; Bruno Canino, piano||Music of Our Century (anthology): original album: MagnifiCathy||Wergo|
|J.S. Bach (arr. Anton Webern)||Fuga (Ricercata) for 6 voices||Berliner Philharmoniker; Pierre Boulez, conductor||Boulez conducts Webern II||Deutsche Grammophon|
|9:00||Anton Webern||Six Bagatelles for String Quartet, Op. 9||Emerson String Quartet||Webern: Works for String Quartet||Deutsche Grammophon|
|Luigi Boccherini||Introduction & Fandango from Guitar Quintet in D Major, G. 448||Julian Bream, guitar; George Malcolm, harpsichord||Julian Bream, My Favorite Albums, Disc 5: Julian Bream and His Friends||RCA|
|Enrique Granados||Danza Espanolas, Op.37: No.2. Oriental||Julian Bream, guitar||Julian Bream, My Favorite Albums, Disc 9: Julian Bream & John Williams: Live||RCA|
We sampled several performances from the excellent 10-disc CD reissue: Julian Bream: My Favorite Albums [Really, not Favourite Albums?] which I found when I was looking for the Borodin.
*Easy to remember, right? 1+Triple-8 + Triple-7 + birth year of Anne Boleyn and Hungarian composer Bálint Bakfark. Meanwhile, let us explore the lovely lute music of Bálint Bakfark together, shall we?