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The French in Vienna

Concerts from Vienna and Rotterdam presented by Fiona Talkington, with the French National Orchestra and Rotterdam Philharmonic.

Concerts from Vienna and Rotterdam with Fiona Talkington, with the French National Orchestra and Rotterdam Philharmonic.

In 1971 an American pianist bought a box of unidentified manuscript music from a local sale for $11. Inside was the manuscript of a score by Max Bruch of his concerto for two pianos, which he had written for two piano-playing sisters. The sisters had never played Bruch's original, preferring to make their own performing edition. The orchestral parts for the original version were available at the same music sale, and gradually they were gathered together and Bruch's original was given its premiere in 1973.

The other pieces in the French National Orchestra's concert are Bizet's suite of incidental music to the play L'Arlésienne (the girl from Arles), and Albert Roussel's suite from his ballet Bacchus et Ariane.

Mahler wrote his symphonic poem Totenfeier with a view to turning it into part of a symphony, but a less than sympathetic Hans von Bülow was not impressed and that mattered to Mahler, because he was the leading conductor in Hamburg where Mahler was now working at the opera. Von Bülow's health began to decline and Mahler found himself filling in for his indisposed colleague more and more until von Bülow's death in 1894. 'Totenfeier' translates as 'funeral rites' and with that and attending von Bülow's funeral, Mahler was propelled into writing his Second Symphony, the 'Resurrection', so called after the words of poet Klopstock that had been read at von Bülow's funeral. And that leaves Totenfeier as part of and yet separate from Mahler's Second Symphony.

Bruch: Concerto for 2 pianos in A flat minor, Op 88a
Bizet: L'Arlésienne, suite No 2
Roussel: Bacchus et Ariane, Suite No 2, Op 43
Katia Labèque (piano)
Marielle labèque (piano)
French National Orchestra
Alain Altinoglu

Mahler: Totenfeier
Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra
Yannick Nézet-Séguin

20 days left to listen

1 hour, 29 minutes

Music Played

  • Max Bruch

    Concerto in A flat minor, Op.88a

    Performer: Katia Labèque. Performer: Marielle Labèque. Orchestra: Orchestre national de France. Conductor: Alan Altinoglu.
  • Georges Bizet

    L' Arlesienne, suite no. 2

    Orchestra: Orchestre national de France. Conductor: Alan Altinoglu.
  • Albert Roussel

    Bacchus et Ariane, suite no. 2

    Orchestra: Orchestre national de France. Conductor: Alan Altinoglu.
  • Gustav Mahler

    Todtenfeier

    Orchestra: Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Yannick Nézet‐Séguin.

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