Music Alive

8:00 PM Tomorrow

Isabelle Demers (organ of Auckland Town Hall)

BACH: Prelude & Fugue in A minor BWV543; MENDELSSOHN trans Demers: Scherzo & Nocturne, from A Midsummer Night's Dream; WILLAN: Introduction, Passacaglia & Fugue in Eb minor; E MACMILLAN: Cortège académique; TCHAIKOVSKY trans Demers: Sleeping Beauty excerpts; LAURIN: Three Short Studies Op 68; DUPRÉ: Prelude & Fugue in B Op 7/1; PROKOFIEV trans Demers: The street awakens, from Romeo & Juliet (recorded in the Auckland Town Hall by RNZ)

8:00 pm on Wednesday (04 Feb 2015)

San Francisco Opera Season

Ten operas from one of the world's leading producers for the lyric stage

Ten programmes

(7) HANDEL: Xerxes, an opera in three acts

Xerxes.............................. Susan Graham

Romilda............................ Lisette Oropesa

Arsamenes........................ David Daniels

Atalanta............................ Heidi Stober

Amastris........................... Sona Prina

Ariodates.......................... Wayne Tigges

Elviro............................... Michael Sumuel

San Francisco Opera Chorus & Orch/Patrick Summers (recorded in the War Memorial Opera House, San Francisco, USA, by San Francisco Opera)

8:00 pm on Thursday (05 Feb 2015)

John Scott (organ of the Auckland Town Hall), Brass & percussion of the Auckland Philharmonia, Musica Sacra/Indra Hughes

COCKER: Tuba Tune; VAUGHAN WILLIAMS: O clap your hands; MENDELSSOHN arr Best: St Paul Op 36, Overture; HANDEL: Organ Concerto in F Op 4/5; WHITLOCK: Fantasie Choral No 1 in Db; SCOTT: Missa Dies Resurrectionis; GIGOUT: Grand choeur dialogue; DURUFLÉ: Prelude & Fugue on the name Alain; LOCKLAIR: The peace may be exchanged, from Rubrics; IVES: Variations on America; RUTTER: Te Deum (recorded in the Auckland Town Hall by RNZ)

Coming Up on Music Alive

8:00 pm Monday 2 February: Isabelle Demers

Isabelle DemersDemers is Organ Professor and Head of the Organ Programme at Baylor University in Texas. A native of Québec, she is rapidly becoming recognized as one of North America’s most virtuosic organists.

Her concert at the 2010 national convention of the American Guild of Organists, in Washington, D.C., was received with great acclaim not only by critics, who deemed it “one of the most outstanding events of the convention.” (The American Organist), but also by the standing-room-only audience, which called her back five times.

BACH: Prelude & Fugue in A minor BWV543; MENDELSSOHN trans Demers: Scherzo & Nocturne, from A Midsummer Night's Dream; WILLAN: Introduction, Passacaglia & Fugue in Eb minor; E MACMILLAN: Cortège académique; TCHAIKOVSKY trans Demers: Sleeping Beauty excerpts; LAURIN: Three Short Studies Op 68; DUPRÉ: Prelude & Fugue in B Op 7/1; PROKOFIEV trans Demers: The street awakens, from Romeo & Juliet

Recorded live on the Auckland Town Hall organ by Radio New Zealand

8:00 pm Wednesday 4 February: San Francisco Opera

HandelSet in Persia (modern day Iran) in 480 BC the opera is very loosely based upon Xerxes I of Persia, though there is little in either the libretto or music that is relevant to that setting. Xerxes, originally sung by a castrato, is now generally performed by a mezzo-soprano, contralto or countertenor.

The opening aria, Ombra mai fu, sung by Xerxes is set to one of Handel's best-known melodies, and is often played in an orchestral arrangement, known as Handel's Largo.  According to the San Francisco Examiner opera critic Janos Gereben this production is a grand-slam winner, with a brilliant cast.

(7) HANDEL: Xerxes, an opera in three acts

Xerxes.............................. Susan Graham
Romilda............................ Lisette Oropesa
Arsamenes........................ David Daniels
Atalanta............................ Heidi Stober
Amastris........................... Sona Prina
Ariodates.......................... Wayne Tigges
Elviro............................... Michael Sumuel

San Francisco Opera Chorus & Orch/Patrick Summers

Recorded in the War Memorial Opera House, San Francisco by San Francisco Opera

 

8:00 pm Friday 6 February: Ane Brun

Ane BrunTo celebrate Waitangi Day, you can hear New Zealand’s own Tim Finn and a band he assembled for WOMAD 2014. The group included Auckland duo The Bads, his son Harper on keyboards and young daughter Eliot as well as a guest appearance from the children of Parihaka.

Also featured is the enigmatic Norwegian-born Swedish-based singer and song writer, Ane Brun who featured as one of the guests on Peter Gabriel's 2011 studio album 'New Blood', singing on the re-recorded version of Don't Give Up, recorded in 2010.

Although most recently heard on Peter Gabriel's album, Ane Brun is much more than simply a backing singer. Much much more. Back home in her native Scandinavia, she's not only something of a big cheese, but is also tremendously prolific, having crafted eight deeply imaginative albums in ten short years.

(2) Tim Finn and Ane Brun

On Waitangi Day we hear New Zealand's own Tim Finn and a band he assembled for the occasion featuring Auckland duo The Bads, his son Harper on keyboards and young daughter Eliot, as well as a guest appearance from the children of Parihaka. Also featured is the enigmatic Swedish singer and songwriter Ane Brun (RNZ)

Recorded live at WOMAD Taranaki by Radio New Zealand