Classical Archives

Ralph Vaughan Williams: Symphony No. 2 “London”
04/17/18
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...
Manuel De Falla: Nights in the Gardens of Spain
04/16/18
Manuel De Falla composed his work for piano and orchestra, Nights in the Gardens of Spain, during the First World War, but the conception of the...
Felix Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 4 in A Op. 90 “Italian”
04/16/18
In October of 1830, Mendelssohn went to Italy, a trip that last 10 months, and a trip in which he found himself starting out in Venice and travelling...
Mozart: Piano Concerto
04/15/18
When Mozart first struck out on his own in Vienna, he set up a subscription concert series that showed off his great talent as composer and performer...
Bach’s Flute Sonata
04/14/18
Hour 1: A SICILIANO is a musical form that evokes a pastoral mood … the middle movement of Johann Sebastian Bach’s Flute Sonata in E-flat is a...
Houston Symphony: Ludovic Morlot - Conductor
04/13/18
Ludovic Morlot - Conductor Jonathan Biss - Piano   Superstar pianist Jonathan Biss teams up with the Houston Symphony for a thrilling performance of...
Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante in E-flat, K297b
04/13/18
Not a symphony, not a concerto, it’s something that contains elements of both. There’s some debate over whether this work actually fully belongs to...
04/11/18
On this date in 1814, Beethoven’s "Archduke" Piano Trio had its first performance in Vienna, with the composer at the piano. This was the last time...
Henryk Gorecki: Symphony No. 3, “The Symphony of Sorrowful Songs”
04/11/18
Composer Henryk Gorecki grew up in a town not far from the notorious World War Two concentration camp, Auschwitz, in Poland. Historians believe more...
Schubert: Piano Quintet in A, Op. 114, “Trout.”
04/11/18
Franz Schubert was well known for his songs, set to poetry.  One of the most famous of these is his song, “The Trout.”  The words of the song were...
Haydn: Symphony No. 100 in G, “Military”
04/09/18
Haydn was kind of down in the dumps around the time he wrote this. He was still Kapellmeister for Prince Esterhazy, but there were no duties to go...
Then & Now 4/9: The Great Outdoors
04/09/18
On this date in 1939, First lady Eleanor Roosevelt sponsored an Easter Sunday concert by Marian Anderson at the Lincoln Memorial to protest racial...
Jean Sibelius: Violin Concerto in d-minor, Op. 47
04/09/18
It took decades and the great violinist Jascha Heifitz to record it before the Sibelius Violin Concerto caught on after its premiere in the early...
Isaac Albeniz: Iberia Suite
04/04/18
Iberia was originally a solo piano work by Isaac Albeniz that features a “wealth of imagery,” according to the composer’s French contemporaries. The...
Max Bruch: Symphony No. 3
04/03/18
Max Bruch’s third and final Symphony may have been composed when he was 45-years old, but he said much of the work is based on material from “my...
Johannes Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat Op. 83
04/02/18
In his own words, Brahms described his Second Piano concerto as “very small,” featuring a “very small and pretty scherzo.” “Very small” is a bit off...
Aaron Copland: Symphony No. 3
04/02/18
In 1944, Aaron Copland set out to compose, in his own words, a piece that would “reflect the euphoric spirit of the country” at that time – that was...
Then & Now 4/2:  Beethoven’s First Symphony
04/02/18
It’s April 2nd and on this date in musical history, Beethoven’s First Symphony premiered.  He was 29-years-old.  And he didn’t disguise his musical...
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 2 in c Op. 17 “Little Russian”
03/29/18
Tchaikovsky’s Second Symphony, or the “Little Russian” as it has come to be known as, is the shortest of Tchaikovsky’s symphonies. However, its...
Franz Joseph Haydn: Symphony No. 103 in E-flat, “Drum Roll”
03/28/18
The Symphony No. 103 was the second-to-last symphony Franz Joseph Haydn ever wrote, and audiences and critics loved it. One newspaper reported that...
Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: Guitar Concerto No. 2
03/27/18
The concerto as a genre seemed to speak to composer Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco much more than the symphony: he once said, “I found that the form of...
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade Op. 35
03/27/18
This Evening’s Masterwork is the story of The Thousand and One Nights, the collection of Middle Eastern and Indian tales, turned into music. Rimsky-...
Franz Schubert: Symphony No. 3 in D
03/26/18
In 1815, when Franz Schubert was only 18-years old, he was working full-time, year-round as a school teacher, taking twice-weekly composition lessons...
Sunday Baroque 3/25:  Vivaldi’s SPRING Concerto
03/24/18
Hour 1: Georg Philipp Telemann was an outstanding musician who could play many different instruments … he was also a prolific composer, AND a savvy...
Oregon Symphony: Carlos Kalmar - Conductor
03/23/18
Carlos Kalmar - Conductor [Photo: NPR:Leah Nash/Oregon Symphony] Susan Platts - Mezzo-Soprano Portland State University & Pacific Youth Choirs...