In the spring of 1825, when Beethoven was 54, he became terribly sick. He was in bed for a month and he wrote to his doctor, "I am not feeling well ... I am in great pain." The doctor put Beethoven on a strict regimen, warning, "No wine, no coffee, no spices of any kind." The doctor also advised Beethoven to get away from the city to where he could find fresh air and "natural milk."
Except for two years of piano studies in New York City in the late 1940s, Venezuelan Evencio Castellanos was a homegrown musician. And based on this sampling of his symphonic output, he'd seem to be his country's leading twentieth century composer. Having the melodic flow of Heitor Villa-lobos, and the rhythmic urgency of Alberto Ginastera (two fellow South Americans), these brilliantly scored works are impressive.
(All this week, we're featuring concerts from the ongoing Savannah Music Festival.)
The Takács Quartet traveled to the Savannah Music Festival to play Bela Bartók's knotty, challenging String Quartet No. 4. But how did they warm up the crowd? With a slice of insistent, lyrical Schubert.
Everyone knows Beethoven wrote nine symphonies, right? Or did he? Undiscovered manuscripts keep popping up all the time. Uncovering a lost 10th symphony by Beethoven would surely give the classical music world something to shout about.
It could happen — at least it could according to our colleagues over at Weekend Edition Sunday. Reporter Naomi Lewin carefully unfolds the mysterious saga of a new Beethoven discovery, as a part of our April 1 news coverage.
Originally published on Fri March 30, 2012 2:24 pm
On Fresh Air this week, Michael Tilson Thomastalked about his famous grandparents, Boris and Bessie Thomashefsky, the king and queen of Yiddish theater in New York. (And did you know Tilson Thomas' zayde is name checked in Mel Brooks' The Producers?
Originally published on Fri March 23, 2012 4:31 pm
In case you didn't hear, it was Bach's birthday this week — and we celebrated with a whole week of Goldberg mania.
The North Korean National Symphony Orchestra is planning a U.S. tour this spring, starting in Atlanta. It's being organized by an outfit called the Global Resource Services, which says it's a humanitarian group that works in North Korea.