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Sir Simon Rattle conducts & explores Music of The 20th Century

By City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra

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By City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Sir Simon Rattle. By Adams, Bernstein, Gubaidulina, Î’erg, Knussen, Strauss, Stravinsk, Gustav Mahler (1860-1911), Claude Debussy (1862-1918), Charles Ives (1874-1954), Arnold Schoenberg (1874-1951), Maurice Ravel (1875-1937), George Gershwin (1898-1937), Aaron Copland (1900-1990), Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992), John Cage (1912-1992), Benjamin Britten (1913-1976), Gyorgy Ligeti (1923-2006), Luciano Berio (1925-2003), Pierre Boulez (1925-2016), Morton Feldman (1926-1987), Hans Werner Henze (1926-), Gyorgy Kurtag (1926-), Karlheinz Stockhausen (1928-2007), Harrison Birtwistle (1934-), Steve Reich (1936-), Conlon Nancarrow (1912-1997), Carter, and Riley. Sound type: PCM Stereo. Classical. 3 Blurays. Published by Arthaus DVD (NX.109222).

Item Number: NX.109222

Primary language: English; Subtitles: French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese.

Written and presented by Sir Simon Rattle, the foremost British conductor of our day, this series forms a fascinating introduction to, and overview of, the music of the twentieth century. Each of the seven programmes feature over thirty minutes of specially-shot music in performance, with Rattle conducting the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Simon Rattle leads viewers on an exhilarating journey through the music of our time, explaining the chief musical developments from Mahler to the present day. Each programme is illustrated with evocative imagery, archive film and photographs and the featured music is set within the broader context of artistic and social change. Why "Leaving Home"? The story of twentieth-century music is one of leave-takings in many ways. As a wealth of talented composers searched for new creative responses to the world around them, many made departures from the solid 'home' foundations of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century music - tonal harmony, melody, regular rhythm and metre. Many had to literally leave home, displaced by political uphevals. A remarkable diversity of expression developed - not all of the difficult or discordant variety commonly associated with modern music. The range is wide and this series samples the work of over thirty composers, discovering new and challenging sounds as well as some unexpectedly familiar music. It presents an extraordinary kaleidoscope of orchestral images, full of contrasts and surprises. The first episode in the series describes a great musical culture in decline in turn-of-the-nineteenth-century Vienna. From that decline erupted a musical revolution whose reverberations have continued to this day. The names of Schonberg, Webern and Berg still strike terror into the hearts of many concert-goers, but with Simon Rattle we hear in this music's brooding power not only the collapse of the old Austro-German order and the rise of Facism, but also the portents of the music to come in the second half of the twentieth century.

  • Dancing on a Volcano: Richard Wagner, Arnold Schonberg, Gustav Mahler, Richard Strauss, Alban Berg 
  • Rhythm: Igor Stravinsky, Gyorgy Ligeti, Pierre Boulez, Gustav Mahler, Olivier Messiaen, Conlon Nancarrow, Edgar Varese, Steve Reich 
  • Colour: Claude Debussy, Igor Stravinsky, Arnold Schonberg, Pierre Boulez, Oliver Messiaen, Toru Takemitsu, Maurice Ravel 
  • Three Journeys Through Dark Landscapes: Bela Bartok, Dmitri Shostakovich, Witold Lutoslawski 
  • The American Way: George Gershwin, Charles Ives, John Cage, Elliott Carter, Morton Feldman, Aaron Copland, John Adams, Kurt Weill, Terry Riley, Leonard Bernstein 
  • After the Wake: Richard Strauss, Arnold Shonberg, Anton Weber, Pierre Boulez, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Benjamin Britten, Igor Stravinsky 
  • Threads: Luciano Berio, Hans Werner Henze, Gyorgy Kurtag, Sofia Gubaidulina, Harrison Birtwistle, Oliver Knussen, Mark-Anthony Turnage 
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