1. JOSEF SUK – THE FORGOTTEN MASTER
‘Enough! Withdraw your hand…’
Josef Suk (1874- 1935)
Pohadka (Fairy Tale), Op. 16 (rev. 1912)
I. O vernem milovani Raduze a Mahuleny a jejich strastech (About the constant love of Raduz and Mahulena and their trials)
II. Intermezzo: Hra na labute a pavy (Playing at swans and peacocks)
III. Intermezzo: Smutecni hudba (Funeral music)
IV. Runy kletba a jak byla laskou zrusena (Runa’s curse and how it was broken by true love)
ASRAEL, Symfonie pro velký orchestr (C moll), Op. 27 (1905-06)
Adagio e maestoso
Indisputably one of the greatest, yet remaining entirely and undeservedly little-played symphony of the early twentieth-Century. It is one of the most heart wrenching works in the repertoire, with some of the most non-overtly sublime melodies one could ever hear in an orchestral work. A piece that I adore and was fortunate to have taught to me by the late maestri: Sir Charles Mackerras and Otakar Trhlík. There are two superlative recordings of this work – one by Václav Talich, and a live performance captured in Sir Charles’s last concert with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra (both on Supraphon). I warmly recommend that this piece be studied in minute detail. The effort will transorm your understanding of Czech music in the post-Dvorák period.
A concert with one rosette is an excellent program for engaging new audiences.
Two rosette programs present either works of lesser-known composers whose works I particularly admire; or pieces that have been unjustly neglected over the years, and which should be performed more regularly.
Three rosette programs are a deeply considered exploration of a composer, or works composed in response to, or contemporaneous with, significant moments in history.