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

Beethoven - Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat major, Opus 73, “Emperor”

- Allegro
- Adagio un poco mosso
- Rondo: Allegro

The "Emperor Concerto", written in 1809, is Beethoven’s last work of this genre - and arguably the most popular. It is dedicated to Archduke Rudolf of Austria, Beethoven’s pupil and patron.

The first presentation of the work took place in Leipzig on 28 November 1811. In the first Viennese performance of the concerto, the composer, pianist and former student of Beethoven, Carl Caernarfon, was the soloist. The epithet “Emperor” was given to the work by Johann Baptist Cramer, the English publisher of the concerto and reflects the magnificence of music.

Allegro

The first part, Allegro, includes a musical dialogue between the orchestra and the piano. The orchestra plays loud resonant chords, while the piano processes grandiose responses. The orchestra continues the long introduction alone, introducing the two main themes. The first melody played by the violins is strong and unequivocal. The second theme consisting of a short series of unconnected notes, is also introduced by the violins. The horns follow with a gentle variation of this melody. Then the soloist shows up and brings the themes together. All material comes back with great results:


Adagio un poco mosso

The second part, Adagio un poco mosso, is built around a hymnal melody, originally announced by violins. Beethoven soothes the sound of violins with "surdina." The piano soothes the theme in a free, polite and moving way. Later the soloist repeats the melody accompanied by a chord of string pizzicato. Towards the end of the part, the orchestra regains control of the melody, while the piano decorates and enriches it.


Rondo: Allegro

In the third part, Rondo: Allegro, the piano that plays only with a chord of horns, introduces the energetic finale. Later, maintaining the part's lightly playful mood, Beethoven introduces a few metres of a popular folk song. The piano is firmly in the spotlight throughout the part, delivered in a multitude of craftsmanships that lead the work to a dynamic conclusion.



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