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Tuesday - Rob Cowan with Al Murray

With Rob Cowan. Including My Favourite Piano Duos; Music in Time: Bach; Artists of the Week: Academy of St Martin in the Fields, featured in Tchaikovsky's Souvenir de Florence.

My favourite... piano duos. If three's a crowd, two's definitely company, and when it comes to piano duos - whether for two pianos or for four hands at a single instrument - that company can be richly rewarding. Rob's favourite piano duos include works by Mozart, Schubert, Bartók and Lutoslawski, as well as a magical vintage recording of a waltz by Arensky - definitely not to be missed!

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

Rob's guest this week is the stand-up comedian Al Murray. Best known for his alter-ego 'The Pub Landlord', Al has performed sell-out shows around the world, as well as making television appearances at The Royal Variety Performance and Live at the Apollo. Al has written books in his pub landlord persona, including The Pub Landlord's Book of British Common Sense and Let's Re-Great Britain. Outside of his pub landlord character, Al has presented Al Murray's Road to Berlin, about the last phase of the Second World War, for the Discovery Channel and Al Murray's German Adventure for BBC Four. He is currently touring his new show 'Let's Go Backwards Together'. Al shares a selection of his favourite classical music, including works by Bach, Handel and Orff, and talks about playing percussion, and reminisces about his performance on the triangle in Dvorák's New World Symphony, every day at 10am.

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.

Music in Time: Baroque
Rob places Music in Time. Today Rob travels to the Baroque era with two movements by Bach, or rather two radically different versions of the same music: the Prelude from his Partita in E for solo violin and the sparkling showpiece for organ and orchestra, the Sinfonia to his cantata 'Wir danken dir Gott, wir danken dir'.

Rob's artists of the week are the late Sir Neville Marriner's orchestra, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, a superb gathering of players who can turn their hands to virtually any repertoire and make a handsome job of it. We'll hear them in masterpieces from Bach to Bartók, dropping in on Mozart, Mendelssohn and Tchaikovsky along the way.

Souvenir de Florence, Op. 70
Academy of St Martin in the Fields
Neville Marriner, conductor.

3 hours

Music Played

  • ARTIST OF THE WEEK: Academy of St Martin in the Fields

    • Edvard Grieg

      Holberg Suite (1st mvt, Praeludium)

      Orchestra: Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Conductor: Neville Marriner.
      • DECCA.
  • Johann Strauss II

    Mephistos Hollenrufe Waltz, Op.101

    Orchestra: Vienna Philharmonic. Conductor: Willi Boskovsky.
    • DECCA.
  • My favourite...piano duos

    • Franz Schubert

      Fantasy in F minor for piano duet, D.940

      Performer: Ingrid Haebler. Performer: Ludwig Hoffmann.
      • PHILIPS.
  • Gustav Holst

    Suite for Military Band No.2 in F major, Op 28b

    Ensemble: Eastman Wind Ensemble. Conductor: Frederick Fennell.
    • MERCURY.
  • Carl Maria von Weber

    Invitation to the Dance, Op.65

    Performer: Hamish Milne.
    • CRD.
  • Igor Stravinsky

    Two Poems of Konstantin Bal'mont

    Singer: Marni Nixon. Ensemble: Columbia Chamber Ensemble. Conductor: Igor Stravinsky.
    • SONY.
  • Al Murray's Choice No.1

    • Carl Orff

      Carmina Burana: Dance

      Orchestra: Orchester der Deutschen Oper Berlin. Conductor: Christian Thielemann.
      • DG.
  • Al Murray's Choice No.2

    • Antonín Dvořák

      Symphony No.9 'From the New World': III. Scherzo

      Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Rafael Kubelík.
      • DG.
  • Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

    Fantasia on Russian Themes, Op 33

    Performer: Nathan Milstein. Conductor: Robert Irving. Orchestra: Robert Irving Orchestra.
    • EMI.

    • Johann Sebastian Bach

      Partita No 3 in E major for violin, BWV 1006 (Prelude)

      Performer: Rachel Podger.
      • Johann Sebastian Bach Vol.2.
      • Channel Classics.
      • 1.
    • Johann Sebastian Bach

      Sinfonia (Cantata No 29, 'Wir danken dir, Gott, wir danken dir')

      Ensemble: Collegium Vocale Gent. Director: Philippe Herreweghe.
      • Harmonia Mundi.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Piano Sonata No.5 in C minor, Op.10 No.1

    Performer: Mария Израилевна Гринберг.
  • ARTIST OF THE WEEK: Academy of St Martin in the Fields

    • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

      Sextet in D minor, Op.70, 'Souvenir de Florence'

      Orchestra: Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Conductor: Neville Marriner.
      • DECCA.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    'Ich will den Kreuzstab gerne tragen', BWV56

    Performer: Barry McDaniel. Choir: Heinrich-Schütz-Chor Heilbronn. Orchestra: South-West German Chamber Orchestra Pforzheim.
    • WARNER.
  • Jaromír Weinberger

    Six Bohemian Songs and Dances: Nos. 5 & 6

    Orchestra: Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Gerd Albrecht.

Recording Rewind

The music played:

Petrushka, Tableau 3: Ballerina's dance
The Cleveland Orchestra
Pierre Boulez (conductor)


Time Travellers: the podcast

Time Travellers: the podcast

Eleanor Rosamund Barraclough presents quirky tales gathered from the corners of history.