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Thursday - Rob Cowan with Hanif Kureishi

With Rob Cowan. Including CD of the Week: Marenzio's First Book of Madrigals; Artist of the Week: Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli; Essential Choice: Dvorak: The Water Goblin, Op 107.

Discover definitive recordings of the greatest classical music with your trusted guide, Rob Cowan. This week his guest is playwright, screenwriter and novelist Hanif Kureishi.

A selection of music including Rob's Essential CD of the Week: Marenzio's First Book of Madrigals performed by La Compagnia del Madrigale.

Mystery Person
Take part in today's music-related challenge: listen to the clues and identify the mystery person

Artist of the Week: Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli
Throughout the week we explore recordings by the renowned 20th-century Italian pianist Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli. Rob showcases his interpretations of Schumann, Haydn, Debussy, Rachmaninov and Beethoven.

Rob is joined by Hanif Kureishi, who shares a selection of his favourite classical music. An internationally acclaimed playwright, screenwriter, filmmaker and novelist, Hanif was appointed a CBE in 2007 and was included by The Times in a list of the 50 greatest British writers since 1945. He talks to Rob about his award-winning career as well as the role classical music has played in his life.

This week Rob's Essential Choices at 11am are inspired by BBC Music's Ten Pieces which aims to open up the world of classical music to children across the UK.
He takes listeners on a musical journey, each day recommending a work that's connected to one of the Ten Pieces.
The Water Goblin, Op.107
Czech Philharmonic Orchestra
Václav Neumann (conductor).

3 hours

Music Played

  • Antonín Dvořák

    Waltz in D, from 2 Waltzes for 2 violins, viola, cello and double bass, op.54

    Performer: Pavel Nejtek. Ensemble: Panocha Quartet.
    • Supraphon.
  • Arthur Sullivan

    Incidental music to Shakespeare's Henry VIII

    Conductor: Royston Nash. Orchestra: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
    • Decca.
  • CD of the Week

    • Luca Marenzio

      'Donna bella e crudele', from 1st Book of Madrigals

      Ensemble: La Compagnia del Madrigale.
      • Glossa.
  • Pablo de Sarasate

    Carmen Fantasy, op.25

    Conductor: Lawrence Foster. Performer: Itzhak Perlman. Orchestra: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
    • EMI.
  • Artist of the Week: Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli

    • Domenico Scarlatti

      Sonata in D minor, K11; Sonata in B flat, K172

      Performer: Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli.
      • BBC Legends.
  • Hugo Wolf


    Singer: Juliane Banse. Conductor: Kent Nagano. Orchestra: Deutsches Symphonie‐Orchester Berlin.
    • Harmonia Mundi.
  • Percy Grainger

    'The Only Son', from Jungle Book and 'Ye Banks & Braes o' Bonnie Doon'

    Performer: Stephen Orton. Performer: Kenneth Sillito. Performer: John Alley. Performer: Malcolm Latchem. Performer: Bob Smissen.
    • Chandos.
  • Jean‐Baptiste Lully

    Phaeton: Overture

    Orchestra: Capriccio Barock Orchester. Conductor: Dominik Kiefer.
    • Tudor.
  • Artist of the Week: Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli

    • Sergey Rachmaninov

      Piano Concerto no.4 in G minor, op.40

      Conductor: Ettore Gracis. Performer: Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli. Orchestra: Philharmonia.
      • EMI.
  • Hanif Kureishi's Choice No. 1

    • Steve Reich

      Music for Pieces of Wood

      Ensemble: Ensemble Amadinda.
  • Hanif Kureishi's Choice No. 2

    • Philip Glass

      Einstein on the Beach, Act 3 Scene 1, Trial/Prison - 'I Feel the Earth Move'

      Ensemble: Philip Glass Ensemble. Conductor: Michael Riesman.
      • SONY.
  • Hanif Kureishi's Choice No. 3

    • György Ligeti


      Performer: Pierre Charial.
      • SONY.
  • George Gershwin

    Overture to Oh Kay!

    Orchestrator: Don Rose. Orchestra: Boston Pops Orchestra.
    • Decca.
  • Essential Choice

    • Antonín Dvořák

      The Water Goblin, op.107

      Performer: Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Václav Neumann.
      • Supraphon.
  • CPE Bach

    Sonata in D, Wq 70/5

    Performer: Ton Koopman.
    • Challenge Classics.
  • Glazunov

    Violin Concerto in A minor, op.82

    Performer: Ida Haendel. Conductor: Václav Smetáček. Orchestra: Prague Symphony Orchestra.
    • Supraphon.

Musical Challenge - Mystery Person

I was Italian born but became a French subject.  My talents as a guitarist, violinist, and dancer soon earned me the nickname ‘the great street-artist’. I met an unfortunate end whilst directing one of my pieces, striking my foot with my conducting staff, and subsequently dying from gangrene.

Jean-Baptiste Lully


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