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1000 Years of Classical Music

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Episodes

Keys to Music: Tchaikovsky's Symphony No.5

2/2/2017
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Tchaikovsky's fifth symphony, written in 1888, is a work which arouses hugely divergent opinions. Many people love it dearly, and the famous horn solo in the second movement is often cited as an example of how to write a beautiful melody. Many others can't stand it, finding it over-emotional, over-sentimental, and repetitive. What gives? Tchaikovsky's fifth is one of the standard works of the repertoire, a core symphony which is played regularly all over the world. But maybe familiarity...

Duration: 00:55:03


Keys to Music podcast: Tchaikovsky's Symphony No.4

1/22/2017
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Tchaikovsky's fourth symphony ranks as one of the most popular symphonies ever written. It must also rank as one of the most misunderstood symphonies ever written. It has been common practice for more than a century (it was written in the 1870s) to regard the fourth as growing out Tchaikovsky's supposed self-loathing after his marriage and subsequent attempted suicide. This homophobic and inaccurate scenario was put forward during the Soviet era when much documentary evidence was out of...

Duration: 00:52:20


Keys to Music: Beethoven's String Quartets

10/11/2016
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The Keys to Music podcast continues its survey of Beethoven's music with the string quartets. Beethoven's seventeen string quartets span the traditional "three periods" of his life. The six Op 18 quartets come from the early period, the three "Razumovsky" quartets and the "Harp" and "Serioso" quartets come from middle period, and the five late quartets and the Grosse Fuge are among his very last works. As a whole, these works form one of the great chapters in the history of music and the...

Duration: 00:53:44


1725 and Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons

3/22/2016
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Jonathan Swift completes Gulliver’s Travels, wallpaper and gin become popular in England, and Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons are published in Amsterdam.

Duration: 00:10:58


1570 and Tallis’ Spem in Alium

3/22/2016
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Ivan the Terrible commits the brutal Novgorod Massacre, the first atlas is published, and Thomas Tallis composes his 40-part motet Spem in Alium.

Duration: 00:11:51


1721 and Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos

3/22/2016
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Rifles are introduced to America by Swiss immigrants, snuff is rife amongst the European elite, and the Brandenburg Concertos are written by Johann Sebastian Bach.

Duration: 00:10:51


1788 and Mozart’s Jupiter Symphony

3/21/2016
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The First Fleet arrives in Botany Bay, Robert Burns writes Auld Lang Syne, and Mozart composes his final symphony.

Duration: 00:13:17


1791 and Haydn’s Surprise Symphony

3/21/2016
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The world’s first Sunday newspaper is published, Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate is completed, and Haydn pens his Surprise Symphony.

Duration: 00:08:09


1859 and Wagner’s Tristan and Isolde

3/21/2016
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Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of the Species is published, as is the first self-help book, and Wagner completes his opera Tristan and Isolde.

Duration: 00:13:35


1837 and Chopin’s Nocturnes

3/21/2016
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The telegraph is patented in the US, Queen Victoria takes the throne of England, and Chopin – living in Paris – writes his Nocturnes Op.32.

Duration: 00:08:24


1894 and Mahler’s Second Symphony

3/21/2016
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The first commercial film are shown, Oscar Wilde writes The Importance of Being Earnest, and Mahler composes his epic Symphony No.2.

Duration: 00:24:12


1878 and Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto

3/21/2016
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The phonograph is patented, Stalin is born, and Tchaikovsky writes his Violin Concerto.

Duration: 00:20:50


1924 and Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue

3/21/2016
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The Sydney Harbour Bridge is under construction, the Klu Klux Klan reaches around 4 million members, and Gershwin brings together the genres of classical and jazz in Rhapsody in Blue.

Duration: 00:20:24


1913 and Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring

3/21/2016
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Canberra is officially named the capital of Australia, and Stravinsky causes riots in Paris with the premiere of his The Rite of Spring.

Duration: 00:05:22


1976 and Gorecki’s Symphony of Sorrowful Songs

3/21/2016
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The Apple Computer Company is formed, Concorde flies for the first time, and Gorecki writes the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs.

Duration: 00:11:00


1988 and Glass’ Metamorphosis

3/21/2016
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Australia celebrates the bicentenary, the Phantom of the Opera opens on Broadway, and Philip Glass is inspired by Kafka to write his his Metamorphosis.

Duration: 00:06:48


2002 and Kats-Chernin’s Wild Swans

3/21/2016
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202 people die in the Bali bombings, half of the world’s data is stored in digital form for the first time, and Elena Kats-Chernin writes the ballet music Wild Swans, including Eliza’s Aria.

Duration: 00:05:16


12th century and Hildegard von Bingen

3/20/2016
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One in three children died in infancy, life smelled terrible, and yet Hildegard of Bingen composed music of ecstatic beauty.

Duration: 00:08:34