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Siegfried Idyll

Wagner's peaceful Siegfried Idyll was written as a birthday gift for his wife. Soul Music hears from people whose lives have been touched and changed by this music.

Wagner's peaceful Siegfried Idyll was written to thank his wife after the birth of his son Siegfried. On her birthday, she awoke to find an orchestra on her staircase performing the music for the first time. It is music which celebrates family relationships, and Soul Music hears from people whose lives and relationships have been touched and changed by this remarkable piece.

Cellist Nick Trygstad explains how the music conjures up scenes of domestic life and helped him cope with his homsickness when he arrived in the UK. Karen West recalls a 50th birthday treat - a trip across lake Lucerne with her father, to visit Wagner's villa. For Tim Reynish, the music has a special connection with his son - when William was born he recreated the first performance on the staircase of his Birmingham home; many years later he conducted the music at his son's memorial concert. And Roberto Paternostro recalls an historic performance in Germany, when he took a group of Israeli musicians to perform Wagner's music for the first time at Bayreuth - the opera house built by Wagner, and later frequented by Adolf Hitler.

Produced by Melvin Rickarby.

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30 minutes

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