Saturday, November 23, 2013

Tchaikovsky Trumpets In His Dramatic Fourth Symphony

HSO Concertmaster Frank Huang
The fetching Mrs. B and I will be honored once again tonight [Saturday] to attend Jones Hall in Houston to hear our great Houston Symphony Orchestra in another good program.  It starts out with Wagner's Overture to the Flying Dutchman, followed by a piece we will be hearing for the first time but I am really looking forward to [as I played the drums in school] from the modern American composer Christopher Rouse, "Alberich Saved" a concerto for percussion and orchestra.  After intermission we hear one of my favorite composers, the Russian romantic composer Peter I. Tchaikovsky, in his dramatic, moving and exciting Symphony #4 in F minor.

Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
From the Houston Symphony web site: "Tchaikovsky poured intense determination into his Fourth Symphony in an attempt to transcend his own life’s crises. Travel through this masterpiece, meditation through rising excitement to joyous triumph".

Tchaikovsky begins the symphony boldly with a strong statement from the horn section to trumpet in this masterpiece.  The strong call from the horns does not end with the opening statement as they come back again throughout the symphony.

This symphony in F minor has four movements with the first movement being very long with a wide range of moods and tempos: Andante sostenuto - Moderato con anima - Moderato assai, quasi Andante - Allegro vivo.   The second movement is marked Andantino in modo di canzona.  The third movement is a scherzo and is marked Pizzicato ostinato -Allegro.  The triumphant final movement is Allegro con Fuoco.  You will hear how Tchaikovsky connects the fourth movement with the opening movement as he employs the theme of the horns from the opening movement into the final movement.

While this symphony has drama and a varied emotional range, it contains the usual melodic sounds you are accustomed to from a piece by this great Romantic composer.  As usual when Sheralyn and I go to the symphony, I like to give you a taste of what we will be hearing. 

Please turn up the volume and enjoy the trumpeting in of this dramatic symphony in the opening movement, and the exciting triumphant final movement from the great Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky.

P.I. Tchaikovsky: Symphony #4 in F minor,  Movement 1, Andante sostenuto - Moderato con anima - Moderato assai, quasi Andante - Allegro vivo:

P.I. Tchaikovsky: Symphony #4 in F minor, Movement 4, Allegro con Fuoco:

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