Tuesday, October 28, 2014

October 31st: It's not just Halloween!

This Friday, there are three special days in one and we'll celebrate them all on Vivace.

Of course, it's Halloween, and we'll enjoy the Symphonie Fantastique in the first hour.  After that, we'll focus on the other two special days: All Saints' Eve and Reformation Day.

At about 7:15 am, we'll hear the beautiful Requiem Mass by Gabriel Faure, as we prepare to remember those who have gone before us.

And after 8 o'clock, we have two special works for Reformation Day.  First, we'll hear the Bach Cantata, Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott, BWV 80, based on the original hymn by Martin Luther, and we'll end with The Reformation Symphony by Mendelssohn.

I hope it will be a spectacular morning of music, something a little different for October 31st - just what you've come to expect from WTJU!  As ever I look forward to the pleasure of your company for Vivace, right here on WTJU-Charlottesville.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Paul Hindemith: Nobilissima Visione

Paul Hindemith: Nobilissima Visione
Seattle Symphony; Gerard Schwarz, conductor

The 1936 ballet "Nobilissima Visione" is the story of St. Francis. Hindemith crafted the music from folk songs, and combined them with the same rich spiritual language he used for his opera "Mathus der Maler" (completed just a year before). "Nobilissima Visione" paints each scene in vivid orchestral colors, and Hindemith effectively conjures up a quasi-medieval world with a distinctively modern orchestra.

Also included is the instructional work "Five Pieces for String Orchestra, Op. 44, No. 4" Hindemith wrote it for beginning and intermediate string players, but one would never know it just by listening to the work. While keeping the technical demands simple, Hindemith creates a varied collection of movements of truly substantial music.

The Seattle Symphony is in fine form on this album. Directed by Gerard Schwarz, the orchestra seems to relish the finely-wrought textures of the scores, sometimes seeming to linger over especially luscious passages. The ensemble is tight throughout both works, and the string sound is gorgeously expansive, especially in the "Five Pieces." If you like Hindemith's "Mathus der Maler" symphony, or "The Four Temperaments," you'll find much to enjoy in this release.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Your Friday Breakfast Buffet: Enchanting Music!

Nino Rota and Christoph Weyse
We have a superb buffet of Friday morning music for you on this week's Vivace.

We begin with music of Italian composer Nino Rota, his Symphony of Love Songs, followed by the delightful Morning Songs by Danish composer Christoph Weyse. 
At 7 am, we'll hear one of those splendid rondos by Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia, as well as an enchanting harp sonata by Krumpholz and a symphony by Jan Zach. 

Later in the hour, we'll have another tranquil tunes sequence, and a celebration of two anniversaries from the world of operetta.

Emmerich Kalman: one of our birthday celebrants
At 8 o'clock, we'll make a short visit to the world of opera and we'll end with music of Mozart and Ernst von Gemmingen Hornberg.  Who was he?  Well, tune in and you'll find out!

As ever, I hope you'll join me for Vivace, this Friday, 6-9 am, right here on WTJU-Charlottesville.