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April 22-28, 2013

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Monday, April 22
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Photo
Czech-born American composer Karel Husa
SYNOPSIS:
Husa's "Apotheosis of This Earth" ...

MUSIC PLAYED ON TODAY'S PROGRAM:
Karel Husa (b. 1921):
Apotheosis of This Earth
Ithaca College Wind Ensemble;
Rodney Winther, cond.
Mark 3170

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
On Karel Husa
On Earth Day

ALSO ON THIS DATE:
Births:
1658—Italian composer and violinist Giuseppe Torelli, in Verona;
1858—British composer and women's rights advocate Dame Ethel Smyth, in Rectory;
1922—American composer and jazz bassist Charles Mingus, in Nogales, Ariz.;
1932—American composer Michael Colgrass, in Chicago;

Deaths:
1892—French composer Edouard Lalo, age 69, in Paris;
1925—French composer André Caplet, age 46, in Paris;
2001—American composer, pianist and author Robert Starer, age 77, in Woodstock, N.Y.;

Premieres:
1749 — Rameau: opera-ballet "Naïs," in Paris;
1885 — Dvorák: Symphony No. 7, in London, with the Royal Philharmonic conducted by the composer;
1904 — Chadwick: "Euterpe" overture, by the Boston Symphony with the composer conducting;
1912 — Dukas: ballet "La Péri," in Paris;
1927 — Roger Sessions: Symphony (No. 1) in e, by the Boston Symphony with Serge Koussevitzky conducting;
1938 — Leo Sowerby: Organ Concerto, by the Boston Symphony, Serge Koussevitzky conducting;
1939 — Menotti: opera "The Old Man and the Thief," in New York City as a NBC radio broadcast; The first staged performance took place in Philadelphia on February 11, 1941;
1944 — Harry Partch: "Eight Hitchhiker Inscriptions from a Highway Railing," at the chamber concert room at Carnegie Hall;
1961 — Ginastera: Piano Concerto No. 1, in Washington, D.C.;
1969 — Peter Maxwell Davies: "Eight Songs for a Mad King," in London;
1975 — Andrew Lloyd-Webber: musical "Jeeves" (book and lyrics by Alan Ayckbourn), in London; An almost totally revised version of this musical, retitled "By Jeeves,: opened in London on July 2, 1996;
1999 — Harbison: "Four Psalms," by vocal soloists Lisa Affer, Lorraine Hunt, Frank Kelley, and James Maddalena, with the Chicago Symphony and Chorus, Christoph Eschenbach conducting;

Other:
1723—J.S. Bach is elected cantor at St. Thomas Church in Leipzig;
1853—First documented American performance of Beethoven's "Leonore"Overture No. 2, at Niblo's Rooms in New York City, by the New York Philharmonic, Theodore Eisfeld conducting;
1869—First documented American performance of Beethoven's "King Stephen"Oveture (Op. 117), at the Academy of Music in New York, by the Theodore Thomas Orchestra;
1876—American premiere of Tchaikovsky's "Romeo and Juliet" Fantasy-Overture, by the New York Philharmonic, George Matzka conducting;
1921—In Paris, the first of the "Koussevitzky Concerts" organized and conducted by the wealthy Russian emigree conductor and music patron, Serge Koussevitzky;
2001—Philharmonic Hungarica gives its final concert in Düsseldorf; The orchestra was founded by Hungarian musicians who fled to West Germany after the Soviet invasion of Hungary in 1956; For London/Decca Records the Philharmonic Hungarica made the first complete set of all of Haydn's symphonies under the baton of its honorary president, the Hungarian-American conductor Antal Dorati.


Tuesday, April 23
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SYNOPSIS:
Gabriela Lena Frank's "Three Latin American Dances" ...

MUSIC PLAYED ON TODAY'S PROGRAM:
Gabriela Lena Frank (b. 1972):
Three Latin American Dances
Utah Symphony;
Keith Lockhart, cond.
Reference Recording 105

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
On Gabriela Lena Frank

ALSO ON THIS DATE:
Births:
1464—English composer Robert Fayrfax, in Deeping Gate, Lincolnshire;
1857—Italian opera composer Ruggiero Leoncavallo, in Naples;
1869—German composer and conductor Hans Pfitzner (see May 5);
1872—American composer and music educator Arthur Farwell, in St. Paul, Minn.;
1891—Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev, in Sontsovka (Bakhmutsk region, Yekaterinoslav district), Ukraine (Julian date: April 11);

Deaths:
1691—French composer, harpsichordist and organist Jean Henri d'Angelbert, age 62, in Paris;

Premieres:
1627 — Heinrich Schütz: opera "Dafne" (now lost), at Hartenfels Castle for the wedding of Princess Sophia of Saxony; This work is supposedly the first German opera;
1776 — Gluck: Alceste (2nd version), in Paris at the Académie Royale;
1881 — Gilbert Sullivan: operetta "Patience," at the Opera-Comique Theatre oinLondon;
1904 — Chadwick: "Euterpe" Overture, by the Boston Symphony;
1911 — Berg: String Quartet, Op.3, in Vienna, by the ad hoc quartet Brunner-Holzer-Buchbinder-Hasa Quartet; A later performance in Salzburg on August 2, 1923, by the Havemann Quartet at the First International Festival for Chamber Music , however, attracted wider attention and established Berg's worldwide reputation in musical circles;
1920 — Janácek: opera "The Excursions of Mr. Broucek," in Prague at the National Theater;
1922 — Varèse: "Offrandes" for voice and small orchestra, in New York City, with Carlos Salzedo conducting;
1948 — Jolivet: Concerto for Ondes Martenot and Orchestra, in Vienna;
1958 — Robert Kurka: opera "The Good Soldier Schweik" (posthumously) at the New York City Opera;
1979 — Rochberg: "The Slow Fires of Autumn," for flute and harp, at Tully Hall in New York, with flutist Carol Wincenc;
1981 — Ezra Laderman: String Quartet No. 6 ("The Audubon"), in New York City, by the Audubon Quartet;
1993 — Morten Lauridsen: "Les Chanson des Roses"(five French poems by Rilke) for mixed chorus and piano, by the Choral Cross-Ties ensemble of Portland, Ore., Bruce Brown conducting;
1994 — Broadway premiere of Sondheim: musical "Passion";
1998 — James MacMillan: "Why is this night different?" for string quartet, at London's Wigmore Hall by the Maggini Quartet;

Other:
1738—Handel is a founding subscriber to the "Fund for the Support of Decayed Musicians" (now the Royal Society of Musicians) at its first meeting at the Crown and Anchor Tavern in London; The fund was started after the widow and children of Handel's oboe soloist, John Kitch, were found impoverished on the streets of London; Other subscribers to the fund included the British composers Boyce, Arne, Green, and Pepusch (Gregorian date: May 4).


Wednesday, April 24
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Photo
American composer Joan Tower
SYNOPSIS:
Tower's Violin Concerto ...

MUSIC PLAYED ON TODAY'S PROGRAM:
Joan Tower (b. 1938):
Violin Concerto
Elmar Oliveira, violin;
Louisville Orchestra;
Joseph Silverstein, cond.
D'Note 1016

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
On Joan Tower
Joan Tower on "The Composer's Voice"

ALSO ON THIS DATE:
Deaths:
1921—Dutch composer Alfons Diepenbrock, age 58, in Amsterdam;
1948—Mexican composer Manuel Ponce, age 65, in Mexico City;
1998—American composer Mel Powell, age 75, in Sherman Oaks, Calif.; He won the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1990;

Premieres:
1742 — Handel: oratorio, "Messiah" (Julian date: April 13);
1801 — Haydn: oratorio "The Seasons," in Vienna;
1950 — Bernstein: incidental music "Peter Pan" (play by J.M. Barrie) at the Imperial Theater in New York City, conducted by Ben Steinberg;
1957 — Ives: String Quartet No. 1, in New York City (This music was completed in 1896);
1988 — Anthony Davis: "Notes from the Underground" (dedicated to Ralph Ellison), at Carnegie Hall in New York by the American Composers Orchestra, Paul Lustig Dunkel conducting;
1990 — Bright Sheng: "Four Movemenets" for piano trio, at Alice Tully Hall in New York City , by The Peabody Trio;
1992 — Joan Tower: Violin Concerto, with soloist Elmar Oliveira and the Utah Symphony, Joseph Silverstein conducting;
1997 — Stephen Paulus: opera "The Three Hermits," at House of Hope Presbyterian Church in St. Paul, Minn., with Thomas Lancaster conducting;


Thursday, April 25
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Photo
American composer George Rochberg
SYNOPSIS:
Prokofiev and Rochberg chamber premieres ...

MUSIC PLAYED ON TODAY'S PROGRAM:
Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953):
String Quartet No. 1
St. Petersburg String Quartet
Delos 3247
&
George Rochberg (b. 1918):
Octet (A Grand Fantasia)
New York Chamber Ensemble;
Stephen Rogers Radcliffe, cond.
New World 80462

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
On Prokofiev
On Rochberg

ALSO ON THIS DATE:
Births:
1690—Baptismal date of German composer and organist Gottlieb Muffat, in Pasau; He was the son of German composer Georg Muffat (1653-1704);
1840—Russian composer Pyotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky (Gregorian date: May 5);

Deaths:
1906—American composer John Knowles Paine, age 67, in Cambridge, Mass.; At Harvard, he created the first Music Department of any American university, and was the teacher there of a number of other American composers, including John Alden Carpenter, Arthur Foote, E.B. Hill, F.S. Converse, and D.G. Mason;

Premieres:
1881 — Gilbert Sullivan: operetta "Patience," in London;
1918 — Schreker: opera "Die Gezeichneten" (The Branded), in Frankfurt at the Opernhaus;
1926 — Puccini: opera "Turandot," in Milan at the Teatro alla Scala, with Arturo Toscanini conducting; The final scene of this opera, left unfinished at the time of Puccini's death, was completed by Alfano;
1929 — Roussel: "Psalm 80" for tenor, chorus and orchestra, in Paris;
1931 — Prokofiev: String Quartet No. 1 in b, Op. 50, at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, by the Brosa Quartet;
1963 — Hindemith: Organ Concerto, for a jubilee concert of the New York Philharmonic, with the composer conducting and Anton Heiller the soloist;
1980 — Rochberg: "Octet - A Grand Fantasia," at Alice Tully Hall, by the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center;
1999 — André Previn: Bassoon Sonata, in New York, with Nancy Goeres and the composer at the piano;

Other:
1841—At a fund-raising concert in Paris for the Beethoven monument to be erected in Bonn, Franz Liszt performs Beethoven's "Emperor" Concerto with Berlioz conducting; Richard Wagner reviews the concert for the Dresden Abendzeitung; The following day, Chopin gives one of his rare recitals at the Salle Pleyel, and Liszt writes a long and glowing review for the Parisian Gazette Musicale;
1865—Pope Pius IX confers on composer Franz Liszt the title of "Abbé".


Friday, April 26
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Photo
Carnegie Hall in New York
SYNOPSIS:
Tchaikovsky in New York ...

MUSIC PLAYED ON TODAY'S PROGRAM:
Peter Ilyitch Tchaikovsky (1840–1893):
Orchestral Suite No. 3
Detroit Symphony;
Neeme Järvi, cond.
Chandos 9419

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
On Tchaikovsky
On Carnegie Hall

ALSO ON THIS DATE:
Deaths:
1951—American composer John Alden Carpenter, age 75, in Chicago;
1991—French-born American composer and arranger Leo (Noël) Arnaud, age 86, in Los Angeles; His tune "Bugler's Dream" (written for a Felix Slatkin LP) became used as a familiar theme for the Olympic Games;

Premieres:
1738 — Handel: opera "Serse," (Julian date: April 15);
1899 — first version of Sibelius: Symphony No. 1, by the Helsinki Philharmonic, with the composer conducting; A revised, final version of this symphony was performed by the same orchestra on tour in Stockholm on July 4, 1900, conducted by Robert Kajanus;
1915 — Hindemith: String Quartet No. 1 in C, Op. 2, at Dr. Hoch's Conservatory in Frankfurt;
1959 — John Cage: "Fontana Mix," in New York City;
1965 — Ives: Symphony No. 4, at Carnegie Hall by the American Symphony Orchestra, with Leopold Stokowski (assisted by David Katz and José Serebrier);
1970 — Broadway premiere of Sondheim: musical 'Company"; A trial-run in Boston preceded the Broadway premiere;
1990 — John Harbison: Concerto for Double Brass Choir and Orchestra, in Los Angeles, with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, André Previn conducting;
2002 — Michael Hersch: Symphony No. 2, by the Pittsburgh Symphony, Mariss Jansons conducting;

Other:
1891—Tchaikovsky arrives in New York to take part in the May 5, 1891, opening concert at New York's newly-constructed "Music Hall"(later known as "Carnegie Hall”).
1926—American premiere of Monteverdi's 1642 opera "L'Incoronazione di Poppea" (The Coronation of Poppea), at Smith College in Northampton, Mass.


Saturday, April 27
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Photo
A Slonimsky book cover
SYNOPSIS:
Nicholas Slonimsky, Date-Meister ...

MUSIC PLAYED ON TODAY'S PROGRAM:
Charles Ives (1874-1954):
Three Places in New England
San Francisco Symphony;
Michael Tilson Thomas, cond.
BMG 63703

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
On Slonimsky

ALSO ON THIS DATE:
Births:
1812—German opera composer Friedrich von Flotow, in Toitendorf (Teutendorf) estate, near Neu-Sanitz, Mecklenburg-Schwerin;
1894—Russian-born America composer and famous musical lexicographer Nicolas Slonimsky, in St. Petersburg (Julian date: April 15);

Deaths:
1871—German composer and piano virtuoso Sigismond Thalberg, age 59, in Posillipo, Italy;
1915—Russian composer and pianist Alexander Scriabin, age 43, in Moscow (Julian date: April 14);
1992—French composer, organist and teacher Olivier Messiaen, age 83, in Paris;

Premieres:
1720 — Handel: opera "Radamisto" (1st version), in London at the King's Theater in the Haymarket, during the first season of operas presented by the Royal Academy of Music (Gregorian date: May 8); The performance is attended by King George I and the Prince of Wales (Handel dedicates the score to the King); The singer Margherita Dursastanti appears in a Handel work for the first time in London;
1735 — Handel: opera "Alcina" (Julian date: April 16);
1736 — Handel: anthem "Sing unto God," in London at the German Chapel of St. James's Palace, during the wedding of Frederick, Prince of Wales, and Augusta, Princess of Saxe-Gotha (Gregorian date: May 8);
1749 — Handel: "Music for the Royal Fireworks" performed during fireworks display in London (Gregorian date: May 8);
1867 — Gounod: opera "Romeo and Juliet," in Paris at the Théatre-Lyrique;
1877 — Massenet: opera "Le Roi de Lahore" (The King of Lahore"), in Paris;
1893 — Rachmaninoff: opera "Aleko," in Moscow (Gregorian date: May 9);
1907 — Stravinsky: Symphony in Eb, at a private performance in St. Petersburg (Gregorian date: May 10); The first public performance took place in St. Petersburg on January 23, 1908, conducted by F. Blumenfield (Gregorian date: Feb 5);
1927 — Weinberger: opera "Schwanda the Bagpiper," in Prague at the National Theater;
1928 — Stravinsky: ballet, "Apollon musagète," in Washington, D.C., choreographed by Adolf Bohm; The European premiere of this ballet occurred on June 12 in Paris, choreographed by Georges Balanchine;
1937 — Stravinsky: ballet, "Jeu de cartes" (Card Game), by the American Ballet at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, with the composer conducting; This work was part of a Stravinsky-Balanchine matinée consisting of "Apollon musagète," "Le Baiser de la fée," and the premiere of "Jeu de cartes";
1987 — Daniel Pinkham: Sonata No. 3 for Organ and Strings, at St. Peter's Church in Osterville, Mass., by organist Richard Benefield, with a string quartet conducted by the composer;
1992 — George Tsontakis: "Perpertual Angelus" (No. 2 of "Four Symphonic Quartets" after poems by T.S. Eliot), by the Tuscaloosa Symphony, Ransom Wilson conducting;


Sunday, April 28
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Photo
American composer David Diamond
SYNOPSIS:
Diamond's Elegy ...

MUSIC PLAYED ON TODAY'S PROGRAM:
David Diamond (1915 - 2005):
Elegy in Memory of Maurice Ravel
Orchestra of St. Luke's;
John Adams, cond.
Nonesuch 79249

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
On David Diamond
More on David Diamond

ALSO ON THIS DATE:
Births:
1892—American folksinger and folksong collector John Jacob Niles, in Louisville, Ky.;

Premieres:
1865 — Meyerbeer: opera "L'Africaine" (The African Woman), at the Paris Opéra;
1892 — Dvorák: "In Nature's Realm" Overture, Op. 91, in Prague;
1892 — Sibelius: symphonic poem/oratorio "Kullervo" for vocal soloists, chorus and orchestra, in Helsinki, with the composer conducting;
1928 — Cowell: "Sinfonietta," in Boston, Nicholas Slonimsky conducting;
1938 — Diamond: "Elegy in Memory of Maurice Ravel," in Rochester, N.Y.
1948 — Stravinsky: ballet "Orpheus," by the American Society in New York City;
1966 — Douglas Moore: opera "Carrie Nation," in Lawrence, Kan.;
1981 — John Williams: "Pops on the March" by the Boston Pops with the composer conducting.
2005 — Arne Nordheim: “Fonos” for trombone and orchestra, in Bergen, Norway, by the Bergen Philharmonic.