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Jean Sibelius
NPR

This week on Mozart’s Attic we continue our look at the music of Jean Sibelius and its role in forging a Finnish national identity in the face of Russian Empire domination. The symphony No. 2 quickly became known as the Symphony of Independence at home, and it presented an insight into music from an entirely unexpected source to the outside world.

Jean Sibelius
NPR

This week we begin a series of the seven symphonies of Jean Sibelius, starting, appropriately enough, with the Symphony No.1 in E minor, written when Finland was part of the Russian Empire -- and none too happy about it. If your familiarity with Sibelius is limited to Finlandia -- a work of defiance which dates to the same period -- you might be surprised to hear more music in the same vein. Not for nothing is Finland's greatest composer also its favorite patriot. See what you think this Thursday night at ten.

Not all of Beethoven's music met with instant success. Even some of his symphonies -- even those that are revered today -- took a little bit of time for the audiences to become acquainted with. Not the Ninth though. Beethoven's final symphony had the audience cheering to the point that the cops were called in for fear that the ovation might turn into a civil disturbance. Not to fear, the cheers were all for the composer, who, alas, couldn't hear them.  194 years later, a good performance still brings a thrill.

One of the last of the Romantics, Sergei Rachmaninoff remains among the most popular of the 20th-century Russian composers.

This Friday night on Airwave Aerobics, take a trip to Brooklyn, New York for a special DJ guest set! 

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