When writing his widely praised second symphony, Schumann faced an enormous problem: how does a composer outshine the brilliance of Beethoven or the graceful genius of Mozart? While suffering from a debilitating illness, Schumann channeled his suffering and resolved to finish this work, creating an ominous portrait of the struggle he faced over his physical ailments and the question of efficacy that lingered in his thoughts.
Listen to a recording of this work by The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields on Thursday's Of Note with Katy Henriksen.
The Brooklyn Rider Almanac spans centuries of musical history and was funded by a Kickstarter campaign. While looking to outside forces for influence in their playing, the group says "Inspiration has been the very lifeblood of our tradition since the days of Mozart." The new project features diverse composers writing new string quartet pieces for this innovative string quartet.
In her new release The American Masters, Anne Akiko Meyers performs the melodic Barber Violin Concerto. While Barber's concerto is widely praised, dislike from the original performer nearly derailed Barber from completing the piece. Fortunately it remains a lasting piece of the violin repetiore, and one of Meyers "signature works."
Listen to it on Monday's Of Note with Katy Henriksen
In the early days of animation, Russian cartoonist Mikhail Tsekhanovsky commissioned young composer Dmitri Shostakovich to write a score for his new cartoon The Tale of the Priest and His Worker, Balda. While much of the film was burned during World War II, Shostakovich's score lives on and tells the humorous tale of a foolish priest and his naive young worker.
Listen to it on Thursday's Of Note with Katy Henrisksen.
While rarely featured as a solo instrument, the bassoon is known for its rich and mellow sound and is often a frequent soloist in many symphonic works. Lia Uribe stopped by the studio to discuss her upcoming concert this Sunday at 3:00pm in the Stella Boyle Auditorium.
The UA Symphony Orchestra kicks off its season tonight by performing Elgar's "Enigma" Variations and Debussy's "Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun." Find out more in my interview with conductor Robert Mueller on Wednesday's Of Note with Katy Henriksen.
Tune in to follow the twisting plot of Much Ado About Nothing, as set to music by Erich Korngold and performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. One of Shakespeare's most beloved works, Korngold captures his comedic genius and adds his own flair and flamboyance to this timeless classic.
Listen to it on Tuesday's Of Note with Katy Henriksen
Violinist Philippe Quint tackles Tchaikovsky's legendary Violin Concerto in D in his new release with the Sofia Philharmonic. Written during a time of emotional and spiritual strife, Quint describes the concerto as "one of the most mysterious and controversial compositions."
Listen to it on Monday's Of Note with Katy Henriksen.