Antonín Dvořák: Legend in C-sharp minor, Op. 59/6;
Slavonic Dance No. 5, Op. 46/5;
The Forsaken Lover – for mixed choir, Op. 29/4
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15
Antonín Dvořák: Symphony No. 6 in D major, Op. 60
Energetic dances, brilliant melodies and summertime joy. The BFO’s Dvořák and Beethoven concert features Zoltán Fejérvári, the winner of the Montréal International Piano Competition.
If one were to listen to all of Dvořák’s music in one sitting, one would need three and a half days to make it through all of it. The BFO will only perform one hour’s worth, but will show a wide variety of colours.
Dvořák wrote most of the pieces to be performed during his most prolific time, not long after the tragic death of his three children. He was trying to forget. At the time, piano four hands were a hit in the salons; thus, Legends (1881) and Slavonic Dances (1878) were both initially composed as piano duets and were only later transformed into orchestral pieces. Brahms, the great forerunner, was both an inspiration and a fan of these suites. Legends, with its fine, intimate and lyrical character, is sometimes mentioned as the antithesis of the Slavonic Dances, with their energy and at times disorderly nature. Dvořák composed the majority of his choral works before his Slavonic period; The Forsaken Lover will be sung by the members of the orchestra themselves.
The Czech master loved the railways. He would have given up all of his symphonies if only it could have been he who invented the steam engine. Fortunately, things took a different turn. Symphony No. 6 (1880), exuding warmth and calm, is filled with summertime joy, including the pulsation and magic of the Czech countryside.
Dvořák’s ancestors lived in a small village outside Prague and were working as bartenders and butchers at the time when the 28-year-old Beethoven was performing his own Piano Concerto No. 1 in the Czech capital (1798). The BFO will perform the work with young artist Zoltán Fejérvári, who in 2017 won the Montréal International Piano Competition, an achievement which sent him rocketing to an international career. The contrastful piece will wow the listeners with its brilliant closing.