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February 11-17, 2013

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Monday, February 11
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Giacomo Puccini
Puccini speaks! ...

Giacomo Puccini (1858 - 1924):
Madame Butterfly Suite
Rome Symphony;
Domenico Savino, cond.
MCA 9834-A
the 1912 recording of the voice of Puccini: Grammofono 2000 #AB-78779

On Puccini and his operas

1795—Swedish song composer Carl Mikael Bellman, age 55, in Stockholm;
1939—Austrian composer Franz Schmidt, age 72, in Perchtoldsdorf;

1725 — Bach: Sacred Cantata No. 127 ("Herr Jesu Christ, wahr' Mensch und Gott") performed on Estomihi Sunday as part of Bach's second annual Sacred Cantata cycle in Leipzig (1724/25);
1727 — Handel: opera “Admeto” in London (Julian date: Jan. 31);
1785 — Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 20 in d, in Vienna, with the composer as soloist;
1840 — Donizetti: opera "La fille du régiment" (The Daughter of the Regiment), at the Opéra-Comique in Paris;
1843 — Verdi: opera "I Lombardi" (The Lombards) in Milan at the Teatro alla Scala;
1883 — Bruckner: Symphony No. 6 (2nd and 3rd movements only), by Vienna Philharmonic, with Wilhelm Jahn conducting; Gustav Mahler led the Vienna Philharmonic on February 26, 1899, in the first, heavily cut, performance of the complete work;
1892 — Rachmaninoff: “Trio élégiaque” (Elegiac Trio) No. 1 in G minor, for violin, cello, and piano, in Moscow, with David Kreyn (violin), Anatoly Brandukov (cello), and the composer at the piano (Julian date: Jan. 30);
1903 — Bruckner: Symphony No. 9 in a version prepared by Ferdinand Löwe, by the Vienna Symphony, with Löwe conducting; The original version of Bruckner's Ninth was first performed at a private concert in Munich on April 2, 1932, and then at a public Vienna Philharmonic concert conducted by Clemens Krauss on October 23, 1932;
1938 — Ernest Bloch: "Evocations" for orchestra, by the San Francisco Symphony, Pierre Monteux conducting;
1949 — Stravinsky: "Orpheus" ballet (as a concert work), by the Boston Symphony, Serge Koussevitzky conducting; The staged ballet had premiere in New York on April 28, 1948;
1952 — Hugo Weisgall: opera 'The Tenor," in Baltimore;
1953 — Chávez: Symphony No. 4 ("Sinfonía romantica") by the Louisville Orchestra, with the composer conducting;
1971 — Henze: "Compases para Preguntas ensimismandes" in Basel, Switzerland;
1973 — Feldman: "Voices and Instruments II," in Buffalo, N.Y.;

1841—First documented American performance of Beethoven's Symphony No. 5 at the New York's Broadway Tabernacle, by the German Society of New York, Uri Corelli Hill conducting; Three movements of Beethoven's symphony (excluding the third) were given in April 3, 1841, at Boston's Odeon by the Academy of Music, Henry Schmidt conducting; The complete symphony was included on the first program given by the New York Philharmonic on December 7, 1842; The Symphony was presented next in Philadelphia (April 3, 1848), Baltimore (March 9, 1849), Louisville (May 14, 1853), St. Louis (May 17, 1853), and Milwaukee (April 27, 1855); On March 28, 1856, 30 players of the San Francisco German Society performed Beethoven's Fifth at the Music Hall in that city, with Rudolf Herold conducting (The San Francisco Chronicle review the following day noted: "The pieces in the program are very beautiful, but it must be said that some of them appeared to be considered very tedious by the greater number of the audience. The Adagio, Scherzo and Finale of Beethoven's Symphony in C Minor, for instance, are portions of a very grand and celebrated composition, but they caused many to yawn."); The first public performance of this symphony had occurred in Vienna, with the composer conducting, on Dec. 22, 1808;
1847—American inventor Thomas A. Edison, the developer of the phonograph, is born in Milan, Ohio;
1907—Italian composer Giacomo Puccini attends the American premiere of his opera "Madama Butterfly," conducted by Arturo Toscanini at the Metropolitan Opera in New York.

Tuesday, February 12
Play today's program

American composer Roy Harris
Harris No. 3 ...

Roy Harris (1898 — 1979):
Symphony No. 3
Dallas Symphony;
Eduardo Mata, cond.
Dorian 90170

On Roy Harris

1567—Baptism of English composer and poet Thomas Campion, in London;
1760—Bohemian composer and keyboard virtuoso Jan Ladislav (Johann Ladislaus/ Ludwig) Dussek (Dusik), in Cáslav;
1898—American composer Roy Harris, in Chandler, Oklahoma;
1923—American composer Mel Powell, in New York City;

1799—Czech composer and pianist František Xaver Dušek (Duschek, Duscheck or Dussek), age 67. in Prague; He was a friend and colleague of Mozart;
1896—French composer Amboise Thomas, age 84, in Paris;
1906—Russian composer Anton Arensky (Gregorian date: Feb. 25);
1915—French composer, conductor and pianist Emile Waldteufel, age 77, in Paris;
1959—American composer George Antheil, age 58, in New York;
1972—English composer Benjamin Frankel, age 67, in London;

1760 — Rameau: comedy-ballet "Les Paladins," in Paris;
1797 — Haydn: "A National Song," in Vienna, in honor of the birthday of the Austrian Emperor Franz II (who reigned from 1792-1835); This melody was later used as a theme in Haydn's "Emperor" String Quartet, Op. 76, no. 3, and eventually became the Austrian national anthem;
1894 — Rachmaninoff: “Trio élégiaque” (Elegiac Trio) No. 2 in d minor, for violin, cello, and piano, in Moscow, with Yuly Konyus (Julius Conus) (violin), Anatoly Brandukov (cello), and the composer at the piano (Julian date: Jan. 31);
1905 — Koussevitzky: Double-Bass Concerto (Gregorian date: Feb. 25);
1909 — Paderewski: Symphony in b ("Polonia"), by the Boston Symphony, Max Fiedler conducting;
1924 — Gershwin: "Rhapsody in Blue," at Aeolian Hall in New York, with Paul Whiteman conducting and the composer as soloist;
1936 — David Diamond: Three "Vocalises" for soprano and viola, at the third "Composer's Forum Laboratory" in New York City (sponsored by the WPA Federal Music Project), by soprano Louise Taylor and violist John Howell;
1964 — Cowell: "Quartet Euphometric," at Philharmonic Hall in New York City, by the Galimir String Quartet; This music was composed between 1916-1919;

1785—Likely date of the premiere performances of three of Mozart's "Haydn" Quartets (K.458, 464, and 465), at Mozart's apartment in Vienna, with Haydn present and a quartet made up of Leopold and Wolfgang Mozart with the Barons Anton and Bartholmaus Tinti.

Wednesday, February 13
Play today's program

Karel Husa
"Music for Prague" in Prague ...

Karel Husa (b. 1921):
Music for Prague 1968
Eastman Wind Ensemble;
Donald Hunsberger, cond.
CBS/Sony MK-44916

On Karel Husa

Steven Stucky's LA Phil program note
on "Music for Prague 1968"

On the College Band Directors
National Association

1778—Spanish composer and guitarist Fernando Sor, in Barcelona;
1870—American composer and virtuoso pianist Leopold Godowsky, in Soshly, near Vilnius;
1946—English composer Colin Matthews, in London;

1741—Austrian composer Johann Joseph Fux, age c. 80, in Vienna;
1883—German composer composer Richard Wagner, age 69, in Venice;
1968—Italian composer Ildebrando Pizetti, age 87, in Rome;

1724 — Bach: Sacred Cantata No. 181 ("Leichgesinnte Flattergeister") and No. 18 ("Gleichwie der Regen und Schnee") performed on Sexagesimae Sunday as part of Bach's first annual Sacred Cantata cycle in Leipzig (1723/24);
1725 — Handel: opera “Rodelinda,” in London at the King’s Theater in the Haymarket (Gregorian date: Feb. 24); On May 6/17 that same year, the score to this opera was published, the first Handel score to be offered to the public by subscription;
1867 — Johann Strauss, Jr.: "Blue Danube" Waltz, in Vienna;
1881 — Tchaikovsky: opera “The Maid or Orleans,” in St. Petersburg (Gregorian date: Feb. 25);
1926 — Honegger: opera "Judith" (2nd version), at the Monte Carlo Opéra;
1943 — William Schuman: "Prayer in Time of War," by the Pittsburgh Symphony, Fritz Reiner conducting;
1944 — Antheil: Symphony No. 4, by the NBC Symphony, Leopold Stokowski conducting;
1956 — Toch: "Peter Pan (A Symphonic Fairy Tale)" for orchestra, in Seattle;
1959 — Martinu: "The Parables" for orchestra, by the Boston Symphony, Charles Munch conducting;
1961 — Bernstein: "Symphonic Dances," from "West Side Story," by the New York Philharmonic conducted by Lukas Foss;
1978 — Roger Reynolds: "Fiery Winds" for orchestra, in New York;

1727—Handel applies for British citizenship (Gregorian date: Feb. 24); Handel received his official citizenship seven days later, on Feb. 20/Mar. 3;
1914—ASCAP (The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) is formally organized in New York City, with composer Victor Herbert as its first director.

Thursday, February 14 (Valentine's Day)
Play today's program

Michael Colgrass
"Winds of Nagual" by Michael Colgrass ...

Michael Colgrass (b. 1932):
Winds of Nagual
Ohio State University Wind Symphony;
Russel C. Mikkelson, cond.
Naxos 8.570244

On Michael Colgrass
On Carlos Castaneda
On the College Band Directors National Association

1602—Italian opera composer Francesco Cavalli, in Crema;
1778—Baptism of Catalan composer and guitarist Fernando Sor, in Barcelona;
1813—Russian composer Alexander Dargomizhsky, in Troitskoye, Tula district (Julian date: Feb. 2);
1882—Polish composer and pianist Ignaz Friedman, in Podgorze, near Kraków;

1829 — Bellini: opera "La Straniera" (The Stranger), in Milan;
1880 — Fauré: Piano Quartet No. 1 in c, Op. 15, in Paris at a concert of the Société Nationale de la Musqique Français;
1915 — Miaskovsky: Symphony No. 3 (Gregorian date: Feb. 27);
1920 — Erik Sate: "Socrate," in Paris;
1922 — Zandonai: opera "Giulietta e Romeo" (Romeo and Juliet), in Rome;
1932 — Goldschmidt: opera "Der gewaltige Hahnrei" (The Magnificent Cuckold), in Mannheim at the National Theater;
1940 — Cage: "Second Construction," for four percussionists, in Portland, Ore.;
1953 — Orff: "Trionfo di Afrodite" (Triumph of Aphrodite), in Milan at the Teatro alla Scala; Note -- this premiere date is often listed (incorrectly) as Feb. 13, 1953, in many reference works and CD booklet notes;

1865—American premiere of J.S. Bach's Keyboard Concerto No. 7 in G minor, at Boston's Chickering Hall, with Benjamin J. Lang at the piano, accompanied by members of the Mendelssohn Quintet Club; The Feb. 18 edition of Dwight's Journal commented: "A novelty, a quaint one, and as it proved quite captivating . . . Mr. Lang played it with delicacy and nicety, entering into the lightsome, racy humor of it . . . After this experiment, may we not say that the Bach bug-bear is already vanishing?";
1911—Gustav Mahler conducts the New York Philharmonic in a program featuring new music by British (Elgar, Standford) and American (Chadwick, Loeffler, MacDowell and Hadley) composers.

Friday, February 15
Play today's program

Russian composer Nikolai Miaskovsky
Miaskovsky and Brooks for band ...

Nikolai Miaskovsky (1881 - 1950):
Symphony No. 19
USSR Ministry of Defence Band;
Nikolai Mikailov, cond.
Olympia 105
Jeffrey Brooks: Dreadnought
University of Minnesota
Symphonic Wind Ensemble;
Craig Kirchhoff, cond.
innova 517

On Nikolai Miaskovsky
On Jeffrey Books
More on Brooks's "Dreadnought"

1571—possible birth date of German composer Michael Praetorius, in Creuzberg an der Werra, near Eisenach;
1847—Austrian composer Robert Fuchs, in Frauenthal, Styria;
1899—French composer Georges Auric, in Lodève;
1907—French composer and organist Jean Langlais, in La Fontenelle;
1947—American composer John Adams, in Worcester, Mass.;
1949—American composer Christopher Rouse, in Baltimore, Maryland;

1621—German composer Michael Praetorius, supposedly on his 50th birthday, in Wolfenbüttel;
1857—Russian composer Mikhail Glinka, age 52, in Berlin;
1887—Russian composer Alexander Borodin (Gregorian date: Feb. 27);
1974—Swedish composer Kurt Atterberg, age 86, in Stockholm;
1992—American composer William Schuman, age 81 in New York; He won the first Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1943 for his Walt Whitman cantata, "A Free Song";

1686 — Lully: opera "Armide et Renaud," (after Tasso) in Paris;
1845 — Verdi: opera "Giovanna D'Arco" (Joan of Arc) in Milan at the Teatro all Scala;
1868 — Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 1 ("Winter Dreams") (first version), in Moscow (Julian date Feb. 3); A revised version of this symphony premiered in Moscow on Nov. 19/Dec. 1, 1883;
1874 — Bizet: "Patrie" Overture, in Paris, by the Concerts Pasedeoup;
1884 — Tchaikovsky: opera "Mazeppa" in Moscow at the Bolshoi Theater (Julian date: Feb. 3);
1919 — Loeffler: "Music for Four Stringed Instruments" at New York's Aeolina Hall by the Flonzaley Quartet;
1939 — Miakovsky: Symphony No. 19 for wind band, in Moscow;
1945 — Paul Creston: Symphony No. 2, by the New York Philharmonic, with Arthur Rodzinski conducting;
1947 — Korngold: Violin Concerto, by the St. Louis Symphony, with Jascha Heifetz as soloist;
1958 — Diamond: orchestral suite "The World of Paul Klee," in Portland, Ore.;
1965 — B.A. Zimmermann: opera "Die Soldaten" (The Soldiers), in Cologne at the Städtische Oper;

1940—American Music Center, a library and information center for American composers, is founded in New York City.

Saturday, February 16
Play today's program

American composer John Corigliano
Corigliano at the Circus Maximus ...

John Corigliano (b. 1938): Circus Maximus
University of Texas Wind Ensemble;
Jerry Junkin, cond.
Naxos 8.559601

On John Corigliano
On the Circus Maximus
(in ancient Rome)

On the College Band Directors
National Association
(in contemporary America)

1709—English composer and writer on music Charles Avison, in Newcastle upon Tyne;
1878—Finnish composer Selim Palmgren, in Björneborg (now Pori);
1907—American composer Alec Wilder (Alexander Lafayette Chew), in Rochester, N.Y.;
1938—American composer John Corigliano, in New York;

1829—Belgian-born French composer François Joseph Gossec, age 95, in Paris;
1868—Canadian composer Healey Willian, age 87, in Toronto;
1963—Hungarian composer Laszlo Lajtha, age 70, in Budapest;
1987—Soviet composer Dimtri Kabalevsky, age 82, in Moscow;

1737 — Handel: opera “Giustino,” in London at the Covent Garden Theater (Gregorian date: Feb. 27);
1884 — Tchaikovsky: Orchestral Suite No. 2, in Moscow (Julian date: Feb. 4);
1892 — Massenet: opera, "Werther," in Vienna at the Court Opera;
1893 — Sibelius: tone-poem "En Saga," in Helsinki;
1929 — Copland: "Vitebsky" Trio for Piano, Violin and Cello, at New York's Town Hall at a League of Composers concert featuring two members of the Pro Arte Quartet (violinist Alphonse Onnou and cellist Robert Mass) and the German pianist Walter Gieseking;
1936 — Varèse: "Density 21.5" for solo flute, in New York, by flutist Georges Barrère;
1956 — Leon Kirchner: "Toccata" for strings, winds and percussion, in San Francisco.

Sunday, February 17
Play today's program

American composer Elliott Carter
Carter times Three ...

Elliot Carter (1908 - 2012):
Symphony for Three Orchestras
New York Philharmonic;
Pierre Boulez, cond.
Sony 68334

On Elliott Carter
More on Carter
"American Mavericks" interview with Carter (audio available)

1653—Italian composer Arcangelo Corelli, in Fusignano (near Imola);
1820—Belgian composer Henri Vieuxtemps, in Verviers;
1862—English composer Edward German (Jones) in Whitechurch;
1887—Finnish composer Leevi Madetoja, in Oulu (Uleaborg);
1920—American composer Paul Fetler, in Philadelphia;
1926—Austrian composer Friedrich Cerha, in Vienna;
1926—American composer Lee Hoiby, in Madison, Wis.;

1732—French composer and organist Louis Marchand, age 63, in Paris;
1841—Italian composer and guitarist Ferdinando Carulli, age 70, in Paris;
1924—Finnish composer Oskar Merikanto, age 55, in Hausjärvi-Oiti;
1970—American composer and conductor Alfred Newman, age 69, in Los Angeles;
1982—American Jazz composer and pianist Thelonious Monk, age 64, in Englewood, N.J.;

1728 — Handel: opera “Siroe, re di Persia” (Cyrus, King of Persia), in London at the King’s Theater in the Haymarket (Gregorian date: Feb. 28); This was the first Handel opera with a libretto by Metastasio;
1792 — Haydn: Symphony No. 93, conducted by the composer, at the Hanover-Square Concert Rooms in London;
1855 — Liszt: Piano Concerto No. 1 in Eb, in Weimar, with the composer as soloist and Hector Berlioz conducting;
1859 — Verdi: opera "Un Ballo in Maschera" (A Masked Ball), in Rome at the Teatro Apollo;
1889 — Franck: Symphony in d, in Paris;
1901 — Mahler: oratorio "Das Klagende Lied" (Song of Lamentation), in Vienna, with composer conducting;
1904 — Puccini: opera “Madama Butterfly,”in Milan at the Teatro alla Scala;
1914 — Ernst von Dohnányi: "Variations on a Nursery Song" for piano and orchestra, in Berlin, with the composer as soloist;
1927 — Deems Taylor: opera "The King's Henchmen," at the Metropolitan Opera in New York;
1943 — Copland: "Music for Movies," at a Town Hall Forum concert in New York City;
1947 — Copland: "Danzón Cubano" (orchestral version), by the Baltimore Symphony;
1948 — David Diamond: Violin Sonata No. 1, at Carnegie Hall in New York, by Joseph Szigeti (violin) and Josef Lhevinne (piano);
1952 — Henze: opera "Boulevard Solitude," in Hanover at the Landestheater;
1961 — Elie Siegmeister: Flute Concerto, in Oklahoma City;
1977 — Elliott Carter: "A Symphony of Three Orchestra," by the New York Philharmonic, Pierre Boulez conducting;
1982 — George Perle: "Ballade" for piano, at Alice Tully Hall in New York, by Richard Goode.