In This Programme
Esa Pekka Salonen
Currently in charge of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Esa-Pekka Salonen has more strings to his bow than just baton wielding. Having begun his career as a composer he now balances his time between conducting, composing and running the Baltic Sea Festival. Established 3 years ago to make a stand about the increasing pollution of the Baltic Sea , the festival which he runs with Valery Gergiev stages concerts around the Baltic and even on board ships. He tells Tom why he thinks classical music can save the seas, and how he manages to balance a double career as composer and conductor.
Daughter of renowned architect Sir Edward Lutyens, Elisabeth Lutyens was one of the first English composers to use serialism in her music and would have been 100 this year. Considered too modern by the conservative musical establishment of the 30s and 40s, and then old-hat by those of the 70s, Lutyens was controversial throughout her life. Tom asks two of her former students Robert Saxton and Alison Bauld what the significance of her music is to today's audience.
Rock Me Amadeus
The idea of a death metal fan going cold turkey for two years to embark on a journey of classical music discovery may seem odd, but that's exactly what self-confessed pop junkie Seb Hunter did. Aided by his mentor Fiona Maddocks, he swapped the world of Slayer and Black Sabbath for that of Hildegard of Bingen and Arnold Schoenberg. Seb and Fiona tell Tom how the experiment went and what, if any were their conclusions. Are you ready to rock?!
Gustav Charpentier is a relatively unknown contemporary of Debussy, who lived to the age of 96 and died 50 years ago. His music's rare appearances in the public sphere these days are usually in the form of aria 'Depuis le jour' from his opera Louise, but this operatic tale of free love set in Montmartre - the working class bohemian quarter of Paris - was a huge success having 100 performances in its first season in 1900, and 1000 performances before the second world war. British director John Dew, and French music expert Jane Fulcher of Indiana University tell us more about the Charpentier behind Louise.