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Thursday - Rob Cowan with Karen Koren

Discover definitive recordings of classical music with your trusted guide, Rob Cowan. His guest is comedy promoter and producer, Karen Koren.

Rob sets the tone and mood of the day's programme with a range of music to intrigue, surprise and entertain.

Take part in today's musical challenge: can you work out the classical source of this pop song?

Rob's guest this week is the comedy promoter and producer, Karen Koren. Karen has been heavily involved in the comedy scene for more than 30 years and is the founder and artistic director of the Gilded Balloon, a major comedy venue at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Karen devised the competition So You Think You're Funny?, which has been won by major comics such as Lee Mack, Peter Kay and Dylan Moran. Karen has also launched the careers of many other comedians including Alistair McGowan, Bill Bailey and Tim Minchin. As well as discussing her Norwegian roots, her life and her work, Karen shares some of her favourite classical music throughout the week.

Music on Location: Norway
Rob explores a work by Norwegian composer Johan Svendsen, which links Norway with Italy. Svendsen's orchestral work, Norwegian Artists' Carnival depicts the carnival festivities of the Norwegian artists' colony in Rome.

Double Take
Rob explores the nature of performance by highlighting the differences in style between two recordings of Bruckner's motet 'Pange lingua' by the Choir of St John's College, Cambridge under George Guest, and the Choir of St Mary's Cathedral, Edinburgh, directed by Duncan Ferguson.

Rob's Proms Artist of the Week is the Estonian conductor, Paavo Järvi. Born into one of the most illustrious musical families in the Northern Hemisphere, Järvi - upcoming chief conductor of the Tonhalle Orchester Zürich - is among the most compelling conductors on the current performing circuit. His approach combines clarity of vision with dynamism, a heady mix that especially suits key works from the early twentieth century. Järvi is currently Artist Director of the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen whom he conducts at the BBC Proms this week, and he's also conducted a number of leading orchestras including the Orchestre de Paris, Budapest Festival Orchestra and Vienna Symphony Orchestra. From Järvi's sizeable discography, Rob has chosen his recordings of Bizet with the Orchestre de Paris, Lutosławski and Prokofiev with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Shostakovich with the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, and Mozart with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen.

Violin Concerto No 5 in A, K.219, 'Turkish'
Hilary Hahn (violin)
Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen
Paavo Järvi (conductor)

Producer Dominic Wells.

3 hours

Music Played

  • Domenico Scarlatti

    Sonata in C minor, K 56

    Performer: Yevgeny Sudbin.
    • BIS.
  • Jean-Baptiste Arban

    Variations on The Carnival of Venice

    Performer: Wynton Marsalis. Music Arranger: Donald Hunsberger. Ensemble: Eastman Wind Ensemble. Conductor: Donald Hunsberger.
    • CBS.
  • John Sheppard

    Missa 'Cantate': Sanctus

    Choir: Westminster Cathedral Choir. Conductor: Martin Baker.
  • Gioachino Rossini

    Sonata a quattro No.3 in C

    Ensemble: I Musici.
  • Cécile Louise Chaminade

    Valse carnavalesque for two pianos, Op 73

    Performer: Bengt Forsberg. Performer: Peter Jablonski.
    • DG.
  • Béla Bartók

    Hungarian Sketches

    Conductor: Antal Doráti. Orchestra: Minnesota Orchestra.
    • Antal Dorati Conducts Kodaly Hary Janos Suite Bartok Hungarian Sketches and Roum.
    • Mercury Living Presence.
  • Sergey Rachmaninov

    Oriental Dance, Op.2 No.2

    Performer: Alban Gerhardt. Performer: Markus Becker.
  • Karen Koren's First Choice

    • Edvard Grieg

      Morning (Peer Gynt - Suite No.1)

      Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Herbert von Karajan.
      • DG.
  • Karen Koren's Second Choice

    • Samuel Barber

      Adagio for Strings

      Orchestra: Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Leonard Slatkin.
      • ANGEL.
  • William Grant Still

    Danzas de Panama - suite for strings: no.2; Mejorana y Socavon

    Performer: Louis Kaufman. Performer: George Berres. Performer: Alexander Neiman. Performer: Terry King.
    • Lenox Avenue - the music of William Grant Still.
    • CAMBRIA.
    • 007.
  • Antonio Vivaldi

    Concerto in A minor for recorder, two violins and continuo, RV108

    Ensemble: Il Giardino Armonico. Director: Giovanni Antonini.
    • TELDEC.
  • Music on Location: Norway (Oslo)

    • Johan Svendsen

      Norwegian Artists' Carnival, Op 14

      Orchestra: Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Neeme Järvi.
      • Chandos.
  • Double Take

    • Anton Bruckner

      Pange lingua

      Choir: Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge. Conductor: George Guest.
      • DECCA.
  • Anton Bruckner

    Pange lingua

    Choir: Choir of St. Mary's Cathedral, Edinburgh. Conductor: Duncan Ferguson.
  • Frédéric Chopin

    Nocturne in B major, Op 62 No 1

    Performer: Nelson Freire.
    • Nelson Freire: Chopin, The Nocturnes.
    • Decca.
    • 7.
  • Artist of the Week: Paavo Järvi

    • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

      Violin Concerto No.5 in A, K.219

      Performer: Hilary Hahn. Orchestra: Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. Conductor: Paavo Järvi.
      • DG.
  • Alexander Scriabin

    Piano Concerto in F sharp minor, Op.20

    Performer: Vladimir Ashkenazy. Orchestra: London Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Lorin Maazel.
    • DECCA.

Musical Challenge: Classical Roots

The music we heard was Eric Carmen's 'Never Gonna Fall in Love', which borrowed its melody from the 3rd movement of Rachmaninov's Second Symphony.


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