Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Deeply Romantic Concert

Tonight [Saturday Dec. 1] the fetching Mrs. B and I will be attending a special concert at Jones Hall in Houston with the Houston Symphony Orchestra.  Two of the great Romantic composers who exude romanticism, the German Robert Schumann, and Austrian Anton Bruckner will be featured.

Robert Schumann was mostly an early 19th century composer, pianist and also one of the leading music critics of his time. Anton Bruckner was a late 19th century Romantic composer known for massive symphonic compositions.  "Tales" has talked about Robert Schumann before on his mentoring and influence with the great Romantic pianist and composer Johannes Brahms and also about his personal troubles late in his life [including an attempted suicide]. In spite of the personal upheaval in Schumann's life, he composed some of the most beautiful, romantic pieces ever. Schumann was aided and inspired by his brilliant pianist wife, Clara [Wieck] Schumann.   Anton Bruckner, like the great Baroque composer Johann Sebastian Bach, was deeply influenced by his religion and faith in God, and he portrayed that proudly in his music. He used the musical talent God gave him to praise God in his music. His symphonic compositions are also known for their great length.  Because of the massive length, I would not take a first time concert goer to a concert featuring a symphony by Bruckner. While it would contain great romantic music with moving depth, it might turn off a person who is a first time listener to classical music.

This is the last season of the Houston Symphony's wonderful maestro Hans Graf, and he will be conducting this program.  Because of the length of the Bruckner symphony this program has only two pieces, but what two great pieces. Robert Schumann's piano concerto in A minor will be the first half of the concert, and then after intermission will be Bruckner's symphony #6 in A Major.

Robert Schumann wrote and dedicated his piano concerto for his wife Clara. This is a great piano concerto, one of my favorites. It is very romantic and melodic. While I am featuring the piano concerto here, and I am sure you will enjoy the beauty of this concerto, there is nothing like actually attending a concert in person hearing this played by our wonderful Houston Symphony Orchestra.  The score is written for 3 movements  Movement 1-Allegro Affettuoso  2. Intermezzo:Andante Grazioso  3. Allegro Vivace.  Because there is no break between the second and third movements, it is sometimes shown as a two movement piece. The first movement has a beautiful cadenza from the 12:21-to the-14:20 mark.  Also, see if you notice the rubato employed by the soloist to add to the beauty of this romantic piece.

Please turn up the volume and enjoy part of the concert Mrs B and I will be enjoying tonight.

Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor:

No comments: