The Early Symphony
Catherine Bott reflects on the work of the pioneering symphonists of the 18th century such as Sammartini, the Stamitz family, Holzbauer, JC Bach, Monn and Wagenseil.
As part of Radio 3's month long celebration of Symphony, the Early Music Show traces the early history. Catherine Bott reflects on the trail-blazing work of the pioneering symphonists of the 18th century such as Sammartini, the Stamitz family, Holzbauer, JC Bach, Monn and Wagenseil.
The 18th century saw a creative explosion in the development of instrumental music and in particular, one of the great innovations of the century was the orchestral symphony. Many of its origins can be traced to Italy but it quickly became a pan European phenomenon with every major cultural centre boasting its own symphonist or "school" of symphony composers, each of which was bursting with its own creative reponses to this new and exciting kind of music.
As part of the BBC "Symphony" season, Catherine Bott reflects on some of the major pioneering figures in the development of the symphony, casting her net across many of Europe's major cities - from Milan to Mannheim, Hamburg and Dresden, Paris, Berlin, London and Vienna. The programme considers some of the novel innovations that were introduced into the symphony as the century progressed and by dwelling on some of the music of lesser known composers it provides a context for the musical world that we've come to associate with Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven.
Many of the symphonists featured in this programme can also be heard in complete performances across the following week on Radio 3's Afternoon on 3.