Tuesday - Rob Cowan with Garry Richardson
With Rob Cowan. Including My Favourite Marches; Music in Time: Haydn: String Quartets, Op 20; Artist of the Week: cellist Alban Gerhardt, in Enescu's Symphonie concertante, Op 8.
My favourite... marches. This week Rob slips on a sturdy pair of boots and steps out to the accompaniment of some of his favourite marches - imperious Mozart, Tchaikovsky's patriotic Marche slave, the humbling Dead March from Handel's dramatic oratorio Saul, the famous Alla marcia that closes Sibelius's Karelia Suite and, most imposing of all, the grief-laden Marche funèbre from Berlioz's Grande symphonie funèbre et triomphale.
Take part in our daily musical challenge: can you work out which two composers are associated with a particular piece?
Rob's guest this week, sharing a selection of his favourite classical music, is the journalist and presenter Garry Richardson, who has been bringing sports news to radio listeners for over thirty years. Garry currently hosts 5 Live's Sportsweek, as well as presenting the sports section of Radio 4's Today programme, and has interviewed leading personalities from Muhammad Ali and David Beckham to Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bill Clinton. Garry will be talking about his career and sharing music by composers including Gershwin, Bach and Verdi every day at 10am.
Music in Time: Classical
Rob places Music in Time. Today the focus is on the Classical era and one of the works that earned Haydn the sobriquet 'father of the string quartet' - his groundbreaking Opus 20 set of 1772. The playwright Goethe famously described the string quartet as 'four rational people conversing' and it was Joseph Haydn who first rounded up that loquacious foursome and encouraged them to engage with each other.
Rob's Proms Artist of the Week is Alban Gerhardt, who ranks among the most sensitive cellists of the younger generation. Gerhardt appears at London's Royal Albert Hall this Wednesday as the soloist in Dvorák's Cello Concerto. Throughout the week on Essential Classics we'll hear Gerhardt perform a rich variety of Romantic cello music. The repertoire ranges from the Bachian tones of a Max Reger solo suite and a rarely heard sonata by Alkan, to the subtly-woven sound-world of Fauré's First Cello Sonata and Enescu's powerful Sinfonia Concertante. Friday's featured work is Prokofiev's Symphony-Concerto, an affirmative piece in spite of the composer's declining health and the ever-present menace of Stalin's disapproval.
Symphonie concertante in B flat minor, Op. 8
Alban Gerhardt, cello
BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
Carlos Kalmar, conductor.
GARRY RICHARDSON'S CHOICE NO.1
GARRY RICHARDSON'S CHOICE NO.2
MUSIC IN TIME: CLASSICAL
PROMS ARTIST OF THE WEEK: ALBAN GERHARDT
Answer: R. Schumann and Chopin
The music played:
Carnaval, Op.9: XII. Chopin
Claudio Arrau (piano )