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Dmitri Shostakovich - surviving Soviet Russia

Semyon Bychkov conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra in Shostakovich's searing Symphony No 11. Plus his Piano Concerto No 2 with Alexei Volodin.

Another chance to hear a concert in which Semyon Bychkov conducted the BBC Symphony Orchestra in Shostakovich's searing Symphony No.11. Plus the Piano Concerto No.2 with Alexei Volodin.

Recorded at the Barbican on 10th April 2019

Presented by Martin Handley

Shostakovich: Piano Concerto No 2 in F major (1956-7)
Shostakovich: Variations on a Theme by Glinka (1957) (for piano)

07.55 Interval - Russian a cappella music

Bortnyansky Sacred Concerto No.4 – Make a Joyful noise up to God
Russian State Symphonic Cappella
Valeri Polyansky (conductor)

Nikolay Golovanov: Slava Ottsu; Pavel Chesnokov: Heruvimskaya pesn; Viktor Kalinnikov: Svete tihiy
Tenebrae , Nigel Short (conductor)

08.15
Shostakovich: Symphony No 11 in G minor 'The Year 1905' (1956-7)

Alexei Volodin (piano)
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Semyon Bychkov (conductor)

Conductor Semyon Bychkov presents three Shostakovich works all completed in the unsettling year of 1957. The Piano Concerto No.2, a gift to the composer's pianist son, Maxim, is tonight in the hands of Alexei Volodin, one of the standout Russian pianists of our time. It begins playfully before a tender, romantic, cinematic, slow movement. After the concerto come the variations for piano solo Shostakovich wrote in 1957 to mark the centenary of the death of the Russian composer Glinka.

In the Eleventh Symphony, subtitled 'The Year 1905', Shostakovich turns to the uprising in St Petersburg, witnessed by his own father, in which protesters were brutally gunned down outside the Winter Palace by Tsarists forces. It's a sombre, intensely dramatic work - "a symphony written in blood" - in which songs of the failed Revolution are remembered. Political unrest of a different stripe affected Shostakovich in 1956-7 at the time he wrote the symphony, with the Hungarian Uprising abruptly halted by Russian Communist forces. Russian poet Anna Akhmatovar was moved to write of the piece: 'Those songs were like white birds flying against a terrible black sky.’

18 days left to listen

2 hours, 28 minutes

Music Played

  • Dmitry Shostakovich

    Piano Concerto No.2 in F Op.102

    Performer: Alexei Volodin. Orchestra: BBC Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Semyon Bychkov.
  • Dmitry Shostakovich

    Variations on a Theme By Glinka

    Performer: Alexei Volodin.
  • Dmitry Bortniansky

    Sacred Concerto No.4 'Make a Joyful Noise Unto the Lord'

    Choir: Russian State Symphony Cappella. Conductor: Valery Kuzmich Polyansky.
    • CHANDOS.
  • Nikolay Golovanov

    Slava Ottso

    Choir: Tenebrae. Conductor: Nigel Short.
    • BENE ARTE SIGNUM:.
  • Pavel Grigorievich Chesnokov

    Hymn to the Cherubim

    Choir: Tenebrae. Conductor: Nigel Short.
    • BENE ARTE SIGNUM:.
  • Pavel Grigorievich Chesnokov

    All Night Vigil - Svete Tihiy 'Radiant Light'

    Choir: Tenebrae. Conductor: Nigel Short.
    • BENE ARTE SIGNUM:.
  • Dmitry Shostakovich

    Symphony No.11 in G Minor Op.103

    Orchestra: BBC Symphony Orchestra. Conductor: Semyon Bychkov.
  • Felix Mendelssohn

    Piano Trio No 2 in C minor, Op 66

    Ensemble: Beaux Arts Trio.
    • Philips.

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