WFIT Features

Bach's B minor Mass was an inchoate collection of movements at the time of his death. Parts of it had been performed, most of it hadn't, and the complete score didn't get published for another century.

And it wasn't until 1968 that Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the Concentus Musicus Wien recorded it for a major German label  with actual period instruments in a reading that played a central role in the historical performance movement.

We'll have the Harnoncourt perfomance of the B minor -- the way Bach wrote it and intended it -- as our sole work this week.

Antonín Dvořák
NPR

What's a chestnut?

It's one of those pieces of music that is heard so regularly that just about everyone knows it -- even those who profess not to like classical music.

It's been an exhausting week here in Central Florida. Let's take it easy for a couple of hours with the greatest hits of Dvorak, Mussorgsky, Beethoven, Vaughan Williams, Vivaldi, and Chopin as we listen to a concert of chestnuts this Thursday.

Schubert's final symphony, the Great C major, was another one of those works that he was never to hear performed. There was no one to finance a concert, and so this masterpiece sat in a musical society slushpile for a decade until Robert Schumann took the manuscript and showed it to Felix Mendelssohn, who stared at it goggle-eyed and promptly scheduled a premiere performance in Leipzig.

Francis Poulenc, Igor Stravinsky, and Ralph Vaughan Williams didn't start the break from 19th century Romanticism.

But they certainly helped push musical development along in the modern era -- even when they sometimes had to reach back into their historic national idioms to do it.

We'll look at some French, Russian, and English influences on 20th-century music this week.

The cycle of Shostakovich's Preludes and Fugues continues. We'll toss in some others by the master, J.S. Bach, and conclude with a trio from contemporary American composer Jennifer Higdon

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