Classical Archives

Richard Strauss: Ein Heldenleben (A Hero’s Life)
04/26/17
Richard Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben, or “a hero’s life” in English, is self-referential, and Strauss received criticism for this upon the work’s...
Franz Schubert: Piano Quintet in A Op. 114 “Trout”
04/25/17
In 1817, Franz Schubert composed a short song called “The Trout,” which told the story of an onlooker on a riverbank watching a “happy little fish”...
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4 in f Op. 36
04/25/17
Like Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, the theme of Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 is fate. Tchaikovsky even said, “Basically, my symphony is patterned after...
Oregon Symphony: Carlos Kalmar - Conductor
04/21/17
Carlos Kalmar - Conductor Yefim Bronfman - Piano Bronfman's playing has been described as incandescent - find out why when he teams up with the...
Aaron Copland
04/21/17
On this date in 1937, Aaron Copland’s play-opera for high school students called "The Second Hurricane," had its first performance at the Grand...
Edvard Grieg: Symphonic Dances Op. 64
04/20/17
Throughout his career, Edvard Grieg tended to concentrate on smaller forms of music, as evident in a few of his more-popular works like the Lyric...
Johannes Brahms: String Sextet No. 1 in B-flat Op. 18
04/20/17
Brahms composed his first String Sextet during the summer, while he was vacationing on the banks of the Elbe River. The composer was in his 20s, yet...
Maurice Martenot
04/20/17
On this date in 1928, the first public demonstration of an electronic instrument invented by Maurice Martenot called the "Ondes Martenot," was given...
Ludwig van Beethoven: Quintet for Piano and Winds in E-Flat
04/18/17
Beethoven’s Quintet for Piano and Winds displays a strong influence of the elder Mozart and Haydn. The wind writing, in particular, brings to mind...
Leonard Bernstein
04/18/17
On this date in 1944,  Leonard Bernstein’s ballet “Fancy Free” was first performed by the Ballet Theater at the old Metropolitan Opera House in New...
Amy Marcy Cheney Beach: Symphony in e Op. 32 “Gaelic”
04/17/17
The “Gaelic” Symphony by American composer Amy Beach was written just before the turn of the 20th century. As the nickname may suggest, four of the...
Franz Schubert: Symphony No. 4 in c “Tragic”
04/17/17
No one really knows why Franz Schubert subtitled his Fourth Symphony “tragic:” some believe it was perhaps an attempt to attract a publisher, or...
Louis Moreau Gottschalk
04/17/17
On this date in in 1849, Louis Moreau Gottschalk performed some of his own original compositions in Paris, including a work, entitled "Bamboula,"...
Edouard Lalo: Symphonie Espagnole in d Op. 21
04/16/17
Edouard Lalo’s Symphonie Espagnole is a quirky sort of piece as far as its structure goes: it is part symphony but mostly concerto. It’s also filled...
Sunday Baroque Listings: April 16, 2017
04/15/17
Hour 1: Music was NOT the original career Antonio Vivaldi trained to pursue. He studied for the priesthood and was even ordained, but within the...
Alexander Glazunov: Symphony No. 2 in F-sharp minor, Op. 16
04/14/17
A 20-year old Alexander Glazunov completed his Symphony No. 2 in 1886, and dedicated it to the memory of Franz Liszt. He was a student at the time,...
Ludwig Van Beethoven
04/13/17
On this date in 1823, the 11 year old Franz Liszt played a concert in Vienna. Legend has it that Beethoven attended the performance and planted a...
Max Bruch: Violin Concerto No. 2
04/12/17
Most people are familiar with Max Bruch’s First Violin Concerto, and his Violin Concerto No. 2 usually sits in the shadow of the First… but it is...
Jean Sibelius: Symphony No. 6 in d Op. 104
04/12/17
The Symphony No. 6 in d minor by Jean Sibelius is often overlooked compared to his other symphonies, but to many that are truly familiar with the...
Ludwig van Beethoven: Septet in E-flat Op. 20
04/10/17
Beethoven composed his Septet in E-flat in 1799 and the work encapsulates all of the musical entertainments of that century – it sits in the...
Felix Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 3 in a Op. 56 “Scottish”
04/10/17
Felix Mendelssohn first got the idea for his third symphony while on a trip to Scotland. He was 20 years old at the time, and he wasn’t in any hurry...
Bobby Previte
04/10/17
On this date in 2005, Gabriela Lena Frank’s “Ghosts in the Dream Machine” for piano quintet had its premiere in Philadelphia with pianist Simone...
04/07/17
On this date in 1726, British composer, music journalist and historian Charles Burney was born in Shrewsbury.  Now I’ll bet that Mr. Burney never...
Ralph Vaughan Williams: Symphony No. 2 “London”
04/06/17
Ralph Vaughan Williams began work on his Second Symphony as early as 1908, and shared the first two movements with friends four years later, playing...
Randall Thompson
04/06/17
On this date in 1945, Randall Thompson’s "The Testament of Freedom" for men's chorus and orchestra, had its first performance with the Boston...