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Wednesday - Rob Cowan with Rainer Hersch

With Rob Cowan. Including Five Reasons to Love Toccatas; Music in Time: Debussy: La mer; Artist of the Week: Philharmonia Orchestra in Mozart's Piano Concerto No 22 in E flat.

A selection of music including '5 Reasons to Love... Toccatas'. The Toccata takes its name from the Italian verb 'toccare' - to touch - and is most closely associated with keyboard music. Throughout the week Rob explores this virtuosic form, showcasing its level of invention and adaptability. With examples ranging from Bach's evergreen Toccata and Fugue in D minor BWV565 to Toccatas by Prokofiev and Vaughan Williams, Rob offers a ringside view of pieces designed to show off the dexterity of their players.

Take part in today's music-related challenge and identify a piece of music played backwards.

This week's guest is the conductor and comedian Rainer Hersch. Famous for combining his musical skills with stand-up comedy, Rainer has performed in comedy clubs around the world, making numerous appearances at the Edinburgh Festival and putting on comedy-concert series at London's Southbank Centre. He has presented comedy concert programmes with orchestras including the Philharmonia Orchestra, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the St Petersburg Philharmonic, and made a documentary series, 'All The Right Notes, Not Necessarily in the Right Order' for BBC Radio 4. Rainer will be sharing a selection of his favourite classical music, every day at 10am.

Rob places Music in Time as he travels back to the Romantic period to discover how Debussy's La Mer was influenced by Impressionism.

Rob's Artist of the Week is the Philharmonia Orchestra, which celebrates its 70th anniversary this year. Founded by Walter Legge in 1945, the Philharmonia quickly became associated with many of the great classical artists of the 20th century. Throughout the week Rob showcases performances by the orchestra's principal and guest conductors.

Piano Concerto No.22 in E flat, K.482
Vladimir Ashkenazy (piano/director)
Philharmonia Orchestra.

3 hours

Music Played

  • Johann Strauss II

    Tritsch-Tratsch Polka, Op 214

    Orchestra: Vienna Philharmonic. Conductor: Carlos Kleiber.
  • 5 Reasons to Love... Toccatas

    • Ralph Vaughan Williams

      Toccata Marziale

      Conductor: Donald Hunsberger. Ensemble: Eastman Wind Ensemble.
      • CBS.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    String Quartet in F major, K.168

    Ensemble: Amadeus Quartet.
    • DG.
  • Henri Rabaud

    Solo de concours, Op 10

    Performer: Michael Collins. Performer: Michael McHale.
    • CHANDOS.
  • Trad.

    She moved through the fair

    Performer: Edin Karamoazov. Performer: Stacey Shames. Singer: Andreas Scholl.
    • DECCA.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Concerto a due cori No.3 in F major, HWV334

    Ensemble: Tafelmusik. Director: Jeanne Lamon.
  • Sergei Prokofiev

    III. March (The Love for Three Oranges Suite)

    Orchestra: Vienna Philharmonic. Conductor: Constantin Silvestri.
    • EMI.
  • Rainer Hersch's Choice No. 1

    • Robert Schumann

      I. Ziemlich langsam (Symphony No.4)

      Orchestra: Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra. Conductor: David Zinman.
      • ARTE NOVA.
  • Rainer Hersch's Choice No. 2

    • Johann Strauss II

      Furioso-Polka, Op.260

      Orchestra: Johann Strauss Orchestra of Vienna. Conductor: Alfred Eschwé.
  • Rainer Hersch's Choice No. 3

    • Johann Strauss II

      Ohne Sorgen! Op.271

      Orchestra: Johann Strauss Orchestra of Vienna. Conductor: Alfred Eschwé.
  • Rainer Hersch's Choice No. 4

    • Philip Glass

      Violin Concerto No 2, 'The American Four Seasons' (4th mvt)

      Performer: Gidon Kremer. Orchestra: Kremerata Baltica.
      • DG.
  • Music in Time: Romantic

    • Claude Debussy

      La Mer

      Orchestra: Lucerne Festival Orchestra. Conductor: Claudio Abbado.
      • DG.

    • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

      Piano Concerto No.22 in E flat major, K.482

      Performer: Vladimir Ashkenazy. Director: Vladimir Ashkenazy.
      • DECCA.
  • Paul Hindemith

    Symphonic Metamorphoses of Themes by Carl Maria von Weber

    Orchestra: San Francisco Symphony. Conductor: Herbert Blomstedt.
    • DECCA.

Recording Rewind

The music played:

March (The Love for Three Oranges Suite)
Vienna Philharmonic
Constantin Silvestri (conductor)


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