Wednesday - Rob Cowan with Noma Dumezweni
With Rob Cowan. My Favourite Baroque Concertos; Music in Time: Duke Ellington's The Far East Suite; Artist of the Week: Emil Gilels, featured in Scarlatti's Sonata in B minor, K27.
My favourite...Baroque concertos. Rob's selection includes a lively bassoon concerto by Vivaldi, a festive trumpet concerto by Torelli, and Bach's darkly intense Triple Concerto for flute, violin and harpsichord. He also chooses a pair of Concerti Grossi: the final (and Rob believes the loveliest) of Handel's Op. 6, and one of the Corelli set that was Handel's inspiration.
Take part in today's musical challenge: which location is the setting for this piece of music?
Rob's guest this week is the actress Noma Dumezweni. Noma is currently starring as Hermione in the West End play Harry Potter and The Cursed Child, the much-anticipated stage sequel to J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter series. She has recently played the title role in Linda at the Royal Court Theatre, receiving outstanding reviews. Her other theatre credits include Feast and Belong also for the Royal Court, A Human Being Died That Night at the Hampstead Theatre, The Fugard and The Market theatres in South Africa and Brooklyn Academy of Music, New York and Macbeth, Breakfast With Mugabe, The Winter's Tale and Romeo and Juliet for the Royal Shakespeare Company. She won the Olivier Award for Best Performance in a Supporting Role for A Raisin In The Sun for the Young Vic at the Lyric Hammersmith. Her film credits include The Incident, Dirty Pretty Things and Macbeth, and she has made appearances in television series including Casualty, Capital and Dr Who. Noma will be talking about her career and sharing a selection of her favourite classical music throughout the week.
Power of Three - the next episode in a 70-part daily series of pioneering sounds from the BBC Third Programme and Radio 3 archives presented by David Hendy.
This week, Rob places Music in Time, and explores the music of six pioneering African and African-American composers. Today, he focuses on Duke Ellington (1899-1974): legendary pianist, band leader and composer. His exalted levels of invention, his ability to spin profound melodies and harmonies and his ear for texture and rhythm marked him out as unique in the twentieth century. The Far East Suite, composed in collaboration with Billy Strayhorn, finds the Duke at his most seductive.
Rob's artist of the week is the pianist Emil Gilels. Gilels was born in Odessa on 19th October 1916, and Rob celebrates the centenary of this great musician with dazzling recordings demonstrating the breadth of his repertoire. Gilels married power to finesse like no other pianist. His Mozart was elegant and incisive, his Beethoven rigorously argued, his Schubert graced by charm and clarity, and his Chopin, ever attentive to the music's emotional and intellectual aspects, making him in Rob's eyes the complete musician.
Sonata in B minor, K27
Emil Gilels (piano).
ARTIST OF THE WEEK: EMIL GILELS
My favourite...baroque concertos
NOMA DUMEZWENI'S CHOICE NO.1
NOMA DUMEZWENI'S CHOICE NO.2
NOMA DUMEZWENI'S CHOICE NO.3
MUSIC IN TIME
ARTIST OF THE WEEK: EMIL GILELS
Mapping the Music
The music played:
Winchester Service: Magnificat
Choir of Winchester Cathedral
Simon Bell (organ)
Andrew Lumsden (conductor)