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Thursday - Rob Cowan with Francesca Simon

With Rob Cowan. My Favourite Smetana Piano Works; Music in Time: Poulenc; Artists of the Week: Juilliard Quartet, featured in Beethoven's String Quartet in C sharp minor, Op 131.

9am
My favourite... Smetana piano works. Celebrated for his charming polkas, Bedrich Smetana was in fact a genuine musical innovator. His piano works contain some of the most daring, disquieting and original music written during the 19th century. This week Rob explores works ranging from the concert etude 'On the Seashore' to the collection of Czech Dances featuring performances by native Czech pianists Rudolf Firkusny and Jitka Cechova, as well as Andras Schiff and Leif Ove Andsnes.

9.30am
Take part in our daily musical challenge: can you remember the television show or film that featured this piece of classical music?

10am
Rob's guest is the author Francesca Simon, creator of the Horrid Henry books. The adventures have sold millions of copies worldwide, have been made into an animated series and film, and have won the Children's Book of the Year awards. Besides the Horrid Henry series Francesca has written over fifty books for children of all ages and is among the most borrowed children's authors in British libraries. She is also involved in children's literacy charities as well as working with young writers, and is currently developing an opera for the Royal Opera House. Throughout the week Francesca will be sharing a selection of her favourite classical music including works by Jonathan Dove, Tchaikovsky and troubadour Bernart de Ventadorn.

10.30am
Music in Time: Modern
Rob places Music in Time and looks at how the signature Modern style of writing for wind instruments and piano crafted by Francis Poulenc in the 1920s infused Poulenc's music until his death in 1963.

11am
Rob's featured artists are the members of the Juilliard Quartet, a group that has been in existence for nearly seven decades. Among the quartet's many virtues is their ability to make the classics sound new, and more modern music sound as if it's been around for years. In their hands everything becomes contemporary, vital and memorable.

Beethoven
String Quartet in C sharp minor Op.131
Juilliard String Quartet.

3 hours

Music Played

  • Jean‐Philippe Rameau

    Le rappel des oiseaux (Pieces de clavecin)

    Music Arranger: Raaf Hekkema. Ensemble: Calefax.
    • MDG.
  • MY FAVOURITE...SMETANA PIANO WORKS

    • Bedrich Smetana

      Ball-Vision. Polka-Rhapsody

      Performer: Jitka Cechova.
      • SUPRAPHON.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Divertimento in E flat major, K.113

    Ensemble: Vienna Octet.
    • DECCA.
  • Barbara Strozzi

    L'usignuolo

    Ensemble: Orlando di Lasso Ensemble.
    • Thorofon.
  • Jacob van Eyck

    Engels Nachtegaeltje [English Nightingale]

    Performer: Marion Verbruggen.
    • HARMONIA MUNDI.
  • Erich Wolfgang Korngold

    Caprice fantastique

    Performer: Gil Shaham. Performer: Jonathan Feldman. Music Arranger: Rózsika Révay.
    • DG.
  • Johann David Heinichen

    Dresden Concerto in F major, S 235

    Ensemble: Musica Antiqua Köln. Director: Reinhard Goebel.
    • DG.
  • Dmitry Shostakovich

    Prelude & Fugue in D major, Op.87 No.5

    Performer: Alexander Melnikov.
    • HARMONIA MUNDI.
  • FRANCESCA SIMON'S CHOICE NO.1

    • Johann Sebastian Bach

      Concerto in D minor for two violins, BWV 1043

      Performer: Cecilia Bernardini. Performer: Huw Daniel. Orchestra: Dunedin Consort. Director: John Butt.
      • LINN.
  • FRANCESCA SIMON'S CHOICE NO.2

    • Camille Saint‐Saëns

      The Elephant (Carnival of the Animals)

      Performer: John Ogdon. Orchestra: City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Louis Frémaux.
      • EMI.
  • Peter Philips

    Ascendit Deus

    Choir: Winchester Cathedral Choir. Ensemble: The Parley of Instruments. Conductor: David Hill.
    • HYPERION.
  • MUSIC IN TIME: MODERN

    • Francis Poulenc

      Sextet for piano and wind instruments

      Ensemble: Nash Ensemble.
      • HYPERION.
  • Hector Berlioz

    Overture to Benvenuto Cellini

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Paul van Kempen.
    • DG.
  • ARTIST OF THE WEEK: JULLIARD STRING QUARTET

    • Ludwig van Beethoven

      String Quartet in C sharp minor, Op.131

      Ensemble: Juilliard String Quartet.
      • CBS.
  • Sergey Rachmaninov

    Four Morceaux de Salon, Op.10 Nos. 2-5

    Performer: Ruth Laredo.
    • SONY CLASSICAL.

Heard on Screen

Answer: Ever Decreasing Circles (BBC One)

The music played:

Shostakovich
Prelude in D flat major, Op.34 No.15 
Olli Mustonen (piano)
DECCA

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