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Tuesday - Sarah Walker with John Humphrys

With Sarah Walker. CD of the Week: Beethoven's Bagatelles, featuring Steven Osborne; Artist of the Week: Pierre Boulez; Sarah's Essential Choice: Rachmaninov: Symphonic Dances.

Sarah Walker with her guest, journalist and broadcaster John Humphrys.

A selection of music including Sarah's Essential CD of the Week: Beethoven's Bagatelles performed by Scottish pianist Steven Osborne.

Classical Consequences
Take part in today's music-related challenge and identify what happens next.
Artist of the Week: Pierre Boulez
Throughout the week we explore recordings of the influential French composer and conductor. Sarah showcases his interpretations of 20th-century masters Ravel, Stravinsky, Liszt and Debussy.

Sarah is joined by John Humphrys, who shares a selection of his favourite classical music. Currently presenter of BBC Two's Mastermind and BBC Radio 4's flagship news and current affairs programme Today, John is known as a tenacious and forthright interviewer. He talks to Sarah about his award-winning career as a journalist and broadcaster as well as the role classical music has played in his life.

Sarah's Essential Choice
Symphonic Dances
Concertgebouw Orchestra
Vladimir Ashkenazy (conductor).

2 hours, 58 minutes

Music Played

  • Franz Liszt

    Piano Concerto No.1 in E flat major

    Performer: Daniel Barenboim. Conductor: Pierre Boulez. Orchestra: Staatskapelle Dresden.
    • DG.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Violin Concerto - slow movement

    Conductor: Frans Brüggen. Orchestra: Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century. Performer: Thomas Zehetmair.
    • PHILIPS.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Serse (Overture)

    Orchestra: Early Opera Company. Conductor: Christian Curnyn.
    • Handel: Serse.
    • Chaconne.
    • 1.
  • Joseph Haydn

    Symphony No 7 in C major, 'Le midi'

    Director: Trevor Pinnock. Orchestra: The English Concert.
    • Archiv.
  • Edward German

    Nell Gwyn Overture

    Conductor: John Wilson. Orchestra: Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
    • AVIE.
  • Sergey Rachmaninov

    Symphonic Dances

    Orchestra: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
    • DECCA.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Bagatelle No. 5 in G major and No. 2 in G minor, Op. 126

    Performer: Steven Osborne.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    The Creatures of Prometheus: incidental music

    Orchestra: Armonia Atenea. Conductor: George Petrou.
    • DECCA.
  • Pietro Mascagni

    Intermezzo (Cavalleria rusticana)

    Orchestra: Philharmonia Orchestra. Conductor: Herbert von Karajan.
    • EMI.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Horn Concerto No.4 in E flat major, K.495

    Performer: Barry Tuckwell. Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Peter Maag.
    • DECCA.
  • Giacomo Puccini

    Vissi d'arte (Tosca)

    Singer: Maria Callas. Orchestra: La Scala Orchestra, Milan. Conductor: Victor de Sabata.
    • EMI.
  • Grigoras Dinicu

    Hora Staccato

    Performer: Michael Rabin. Orchestra: The Hollywood Bowl Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Felix Slatkin. Composer: Felix Slatkin.
    • EMI.

Musical Challenge - Classical Consequences

At the climax of Puccini’s opera, Tosca, the heroine leaps to her death from the walls of the Castel Sant’Angelo. Usually a thick mattress is positioned to break her fall, but, on one occasion, the safety-conscious stagehands came up with a different solution … So imagine, we’re at the end of Act 3, Tosca is about to be arrested for the murder of Scarpia, but she evades their clutches, runs to the parapet and hurls herself over … What happened next?



The stagehands had replaced the mattress with a trampoline: the result was that, after dramatically jumping off the rampart, Tosca kept reappearing from behind the wall, bouncing up and down.


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