Tschaikovsky - 1812 Overture, op. 49

Tchaikovsky's Overture 1812 expresses Russia's nationalist spirit for the Russians' magnificent victory over Napoleon. In 1880, when he was writing the charming Serenade for Strings, Tchaikovsky undertook to compose a "ceremonial introduction" for an exhibition of industrial art in Moscow. As a theme of his introduction he chose Napoleon's Russia Campaign, which ended with the great victory of the Russian Army. At first the composer intended the introduction to be for outdoor performance and felt that it should be "very loud and noisy". Since then the introduction has become his most famous and most popular concert work. The "1812 Overture" is in fact an introduction to a concerto, in other words is a stand-alone work of orchestral music and not an introduction to opera or a more extensive work. The play describes the invasion of Russia by Napoleon's troops in 1812 and their retreat and defeat in the winter of the same year. Despite

Grieg - Sigurd Jorsalfar, Op. 56

This image of country tranquility captures the atmosphere it introduces to Borghild's Dream. The calm, however, is disturbed as the music suddenly reaps.


Grieg was passionate Norwegian. In addition to popular culture, he admired contemporary artists and playwrights, including the very famous Bjornstejerne Marinius Bjornson, whom he met in 1870. Grieg was inspired by Bjornson several lyrical works on local themes, but his most famous nationalist work is Sigurd Jorsalfar, originally written as stage music for Bjornson's eponymous work.

This composition presents the drama and emotions of the heroic Viking era and expresses the composer's love for his rich and diverse cultural heritage.

The complete play first presented in Christiania (Oslo's old name) on March 18, 1872, on Bjornson's 70th birthday. Grieg transcribed the music into three orchestral suites, published under the title Sigurd Jorsalfar Suites, twenty years later, in 1892.

- Introduction: In the King's Hall

Bjornson's work is inspired by Heimskringla Saga, a medieval Scandinavian legend who tells the story of two twelfth century kings who are mortal enemies: Eystein, a bureaucrat and legislator, does not want to leave Norway, while Sigurd is an explorer and crusader who loves to travel. The two brothers represent both sides of the Norwegian character and could be a description of Grieg himself.

The two brothers' rivalry for Borghild soon turns violent.

- Intermezzo: Borghild's Dream

Grieg told the story with a combination of orchestral and choral parts. The play begins gently and continues with Borghild's Dream as she is half asleep and becomes hectic when she wakes up abruptly, frightened by a nightmare caused by the unpleasant thoughts of the rivalry of the two brothers.

The following match is presented by a dialogue between the piano and the violin, the rants of the competition of the two rivals. As the work becomes more restless, we hear the call of the horns. This heralds the first choral work, the Scandinavians, where the shouting represents the two angry rivals who challenge each other in battle.

- Homage March

The masterful Homage March, with the magnificent introduction played by four cellos, calms terror as the sovereign intervenes and the play ends with the King's Ballad, where a soloist and a crowd of voices celebrate peace.






Comments