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David Dalle

David Dalle
Thursday February 28th, 2013 with David Dalle
Alfred Schnittke's 2nd symphony; Wagner's Parsifal

Continuing my cycle of the symphonies of Alfred Schnittke with his 2nd symphony. The idea for this symphony came about by his accidental tour in 1977 of Western Europe. His music was becoming known outside of the USSR, and Gidon Kremer was leading a tour of his 1st Concerto Grosso. The Soviet union of composers would not allow Schnittke to attend the performances, however, Gidon Kremer invited him along as the harpsichordist and he was able to attend as a musician. During this tour they visited the large St. Florian monastery where the great 19th century symphonist Anton Bruckner had worked as an organist for a decade, and he is buried underneath the large organ. He heard a small choir singing the evening mass, but hidden from view in the church, and it was thinking of Bruckner and this "invisible mass" which inspired his great 2nd symphony. This symphony is almost like 2 separate tracks, in one, a chamber choir sings the ordinary of the mass, in the other, a very large orchestra plays something like a free commentary on the mass. It is a very striking, haunting and beautiful piece. We start with Wagner's last opera Parsifal, his extraordinary mystical-religious piece which he termed "ein Bühnenweihfestspiel" - "A Festival Play for the Consecration of the Stage". Composed with the intention that it would only be performed exclusively at the Bayreuth festival, which it was for several decades after his death. A very complex piece it perhaps can be summed up in the ideal of redemption through compassion within a medieval Christian symbolic framework (though never explicitly named), a noble idea which Wagner learned from Schopenhauer's view on Bhuddism. But for the music lover, it is easy to just immerse yourself and be carried away by this incredibly rich, gorgeous music. (Which German-speaking Anton Bruckner did attending his first Wagner opera, he simply closed his eyes and let the music take him away). A new production of Parsifal is performed this Saturday afternoon by the Metropolitan Opera company and broadcast live at many cinemas worldwide, including some here in Ottawa. For more information:
Act I Prelude
Richard Wagner/Gary Lehman, Violeta Urmana, Rene Pape, Mariinsky Soloists, Orchestra and Chorus, Valery Gergiev - Parsifal - Mariinsky
Act I Nun achte wohl, und lass mich sehn
Richard Wagner/Gary Lehman, Violeta Urmana, Rene Pape, Mariinsky Soloists, Orchestra and Chorus, Valery Gergiev - Parsifal - Mariinsky
Feierlicher Marsch zum heiligen Gral aus dem Parsifal
Richard Wagner trans. Franz Liszt/Leslie Howard - Liszt at the Opera II - Hyperion
Mike Nock, Eddie Gomez, Jon Christensen - Ondas - ECM
Mine Peza
Elina Duni Quartet - Matane Malit - ECM
Symphony No. 2 'St Florian'
Alfred Schnittke/Russian State Symphonic Cappella, Russian State Symphony Orchestra, Valery Polyansky - Symphony no. 2 - Chandos
Interactive CKCU
DRAT! Looks like I will miss Schnittke 2nd live today ... stupid day job ... Will pick it up OnDemand. And email my Mom the links also -- she raved about the 1st. Looking forward to it!

12:29 PM, February 28th, 2013
David Dalle (host)
Ah too bad, cheers for On-Demand! Please let me know what you and your mother think of it!

2:16 PM, February 28th, 2013
Opening up OnDemand now. And will definitely let you know what "She Who Introduced Me To Stravinsky (at about age 5)" thinks too. She's pretty darned hip for 80-something.

5:32 PM, February 28th, 2013
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