The Philadelphians In Concert on WRTI 90.1: Yannick Conducts Weber, Schumann, and Beethoven

May 23, 2019


On Sunday, May 26th at 1 PM, our Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcast brings pianist Jonathan Biss to the stage, for a performance of Robert Schumann’s Piano Concerto in A minor, a work that transports the piano concerto into the realm of symphonic music. Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts.

Many years in the making, and the only piano concerto Schumann would ever write, the a-minor concerto is not a traditional virtuoso showpiece, but rather a cooperative venture between the soloist and the orchestra, and one of the greatest ever written.

Also on the all-German program Sunday, the Philadelphians perform Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3, the monumental “Eroica,” nothing less than a turning point in the history of orchestral music. Performed for the first time in February of 1805, it was a puzzle to the players, critics, and listeners, who all found the work exceedingly difficult.

From the very first notes, it was clear that this was no ordinary symphony. Two fortissimo E-flat chords, followed immediately by a simple theme constructed out of the notes from that chord! Dissonance, and other striking harmonic details assaulted the ear. Never before had a composer produced such a revolutionary work.

The concert begins with a signal work of early German musical Romanticism, the celebrated Overture to Weber’s opera Der Freischütz, brimming with folk material, mysticism, magic, danger, and a dose of the supernatural replete with Faustian overtones.

During intermission, WRTI’s Debra Lew Harder speaks backstage with pianist Jonathan Biss.

Weber, Schumann, and Beethoven, with The Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Yannick! You can’t miss this one! That’s this Sunday, May 26th at 1 PM on WRTI 90.1, and streaming worldwide at wrti.org.

PROGRAM:

Weber: Overture to Der Freischütz

Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54

I. Allegro affettuoso

II. Intermezzo: Andantino grazioso

III. Allegro vivace

Jonathan Biss, piano

INTERMISSION

Beethoven: Symphony No. 3 in E flat, Op. 55 (“Eroica”)

I. Allegro con brio

II. Marcia funebre: Adagio assai

III. Scherzo (Allegro vivace) and Trio

IV. Finale: Allegro molto—Andante—Presto

The Philadelphia Orchestra

Yannick Nézet-Séguin, conductor

Gregg Whiteside is producer and host of the Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcasts, every Sunday at 1 pm on WRTI 90.1, streaming online at WRTI.org, and on our mobile app! Listen again on Mondays at 7 pm on WRTI HD-2