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Friday - Rob Cowan with Rebecca Front

With Rob Cowan. Including My Favourite English Tone Painting; Music in Time: Weber: Oberon; Artist of the Week: Mikhail Pletnev, featured in Chopin's Piano Sonata No 2.

My favourite...English tone painting. Rob chooses colourful pieces by five English composers, some sketching a musical idea of springtime, from Delius's famous cuckoo to less well known works such as April-England by John Foulds and Frank Bridge's Enter Spring.

Take part in our daily musical challenge: identify a piece of music played backwards.

Rob's guest is the actress, comedian, writer and presenter Rebecca Front. Rebecca has recently played the scheming Anna Mikhailovna in the BBC's adaptation of War and Peace and starred in Julian Fellowes' latest period drama Doctor Thorne. She made her name in satirical shows such as The Day Today, Knowing Me, Knowing You With Alan Partridge, and The Thick of It, for which she won a BAFTA. Other roles include Chief Superintendent Jean Innocent in Lewis and Mrs Bennet in Death Comes to Pemberley. Rebecca will be sharing a selection of her favourite classical music every day at 10am.

Music in Time: Romantic
Shakespeare's character of Oberon, King of the Fairies, provided Carl Maria von Weber with the subject for his final opera in which a new vivid style of musical characterization compensated for a weak libretto.

Artist of the week. This week Rob features the pianistic skills of the multi-talented Russian musician Mikhail Pletnev. Pletnev burst onto the musical scene in 1978 when he won the Gold Medal at the International Tchaikovsky Competition. His colossal technique and vivid interpretations led to worldwide acclaim as a pianist, while he also built a career as a conductor. Rob presents a showcase of his recordings, including concertos by Haydn and Beethoven, and sonatas by Chopin and Scriabin.

Sonata No. 2 in B flat minor Op. 35
Mikhail Pletnev (piano).

3 hours

Music Played

  • Felix Mendelssohn

    Dance of the Clowns (A Midsummer Night's Dream)

    Orchestra: Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Rafael Kubelík.
    • DG.
  • Claudio Monteverdi

    Ecco vicine, o bella tigre; Eccomi pronta ai baci (Madrigals, Book 7)

    Ensemble: Tragicomedia. Director: Stephen Stubbs.
    • TELDEC.
  • My favourite... tone paintings

    • Granville Bantock

      Overture to a Greek Tragedy: Oedipus at Colonus

      Orchestra: Philharmonia Orchestra. Conductor: Nicholas Braithwaite.
      • LYRITA.
  • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

    Polacca de concert, Op.72 No.7

    Performer: Mikhail Pletnev.
    • DG.
  • Frank Bridge

    Cherry ripe

    Ensemble: Nash Ensemble.
  • Johannes Brahms

    Haydn Variations

    Orchestra: Czech Philharmonic. Conductor: Antonio Pedrotti.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    VII. Finale: Molto allegro (Gran Partita, K.361)

    Ensemble: Harmonie de l'Orchestre des Champs Elysees. Director: Philippe Herreweghe.
  • Rebecca Front's Choice

    • Antonio Vivaldi

      Cuius animam; O quam tristis (Stabat Mater, RV.621)

      Singer: Michael Chance. Orchestra: The English Concert. Director: Trevor Pinnock.
      • ARCHIV.
  • Rob's choice for Rebecca Front

    • Alessandro Marcello

      II. Adagio (Oboe Concerto No.1 in D minor)

      Performer: Cyprien Katsaris. Music Arranger: Johann Sebastian Bach. Music Arranger: Cyprien Katsaris.
      • PIANO21.
  • Eric Coates

    Calling All Workers

    Orchestra: City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Reginald Kilbey.
    • EMI.
  • Mary Lou Williams


    Performer: Mary Lou Williams Trio.
    • VOGUE.
  • Music in Time: Romantic

    • Carl Maria von Weber

      Oberon Overture

      Orchestra: Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Rafael Kubelík.
      • DG.
  • Johann Wenzel Kalliwoda

    String Quartet No.2 in A major, Op.62

    Ensemble: Talichovo kvarteto.
  • Artist of the Week: Mikhail Pletnev

    • Frédéric Chopin

      Piano Sonata No.2, Op.35

      Performer: Mikhail Pletnev.
  • Bedrich Smetana

    3rd movement of String Quartet no 2 in D minor

    Performer: Pavel Haas Quartet.
  • Bedrich Smetana

    4th movement Quartet no 2

    Performer: Pavel Haas Quartet.
  • Antonín Dvořák

    Prague Waltzes

    Performer: Musica Florea. Conductor: Marek Štryncl.
    • ARTA.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Concerto Grosso in D major, Op 3 No 6

    Performer: Aline Zylberajch. Ensemble: Les Musiciens du Louvre. Conductor: Marc Minkowski.
    • ERATO.

Recording Rewind

The music played:

Mozart Serenade No. 10 ‘Gran Partita’: Finale

Harmonie de l’Orchestre des Champs Elysees

Philippe Herreweghe (director)



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