Archive for the ‘Handel’ Category

Handel week on BBC Radio 3

April 10, 2009
Approaching the mid-point of its broadcasts of all 42 Handel operas on Thursday afternoons, BBC Radio 3 continues its spectacular celebration of Handel’s great art with a fine week of special programming, starting tomorrow.

You’ll be able to catch many of the programmes online – via BBC iPlayer.

Highlights include:

* Easter Sunday, Michael Berkeley recalls nine guests who have chosen Handel pieces in Private Passions;

* Radio 3 Requests features listeners’ requests with a Handel focus;

* Mon-Fri: Composer of the Week is dedicated to Handel’s oratorios, including Esther, Messiah and Judas Maccabeus.

* Messiah from Westminster Abbey on the exact 250th anniversary of his death, Tuesday April 14th.

* the European Broadcasting Union Handel Day on April 19th presents twelve hours of musical celebrations from across the continent.

Details: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio3; Handel pages in Composers of the Year website: http://www.bbc.co.uk/composers/handel/

As a long-time admirer of Radio 3, but scornful critic/reluctant funder (via taxation) of the bloated BBC, I’d willingly pay a subscription to hear this kind of quality programming. Pity that I also have to pay for all the other crap that seeps from the broadcaster.

Gerry Smith

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Handel’s La Resurezzione, at the Barbican tonight

March 31, 2009
Handel’s La Resurezzione, at London’s Barbican tonight, was a two hour delight: exquisite, uplifting, life-affirming.

The star was Handel himself. He wrote this masterwork, only his second oratorio, in 1708, at the age of 22. It’s a lyrical, driving, compelling work, packed with engaging leitmotifs and stunning melodic runs.

Tonight’s other star was conductress Emmanuelle Haim and her fabulous chamber orchestra, Le Concert d’Astree. They were equal to the task of interpreting such great music. But, then, they always are.

The quintet of vocalists was most commanding when singing as a choir at the end of both parts. In the arias, bass Lorenzo Regazzo (Lucifer) and soprano Kate Royal (Magdalene) were magnificent.

Tonight’s Handel was the first of a trio of sacred music gigs for Easter that I’ll be attending. To come: Bach’s St Matthew Passion on Sunday, followed by St John Passion next Wednesday. Not bad for an atheist!

Rave on those Baroque master musos!

Gerry Smith

Bach, Handel and The Smiths on BBC Four tonight

March 13, 2009
BBC Four, sometime* patron of music for grown-ups, has a wonderfully eclectic roster tonight – JS Bach at 1930, followed by some divine Handel and then a doc on, and clips from, Rough Trade, the seminal London indie record label which introduced The Smiths and Pulp, among others, to an unsuspecting world.

This is inspired programming by the digital TV channel for grown-ups.

*BBC Four’s music programming generally brings great musicians to a new audience, but some of its recent output has been dire – ill-chosen pap, schlock-filled profiles of show biz entertainers, blah blah… – somebody is slipping up….

Gerry Smith

Sacred music for Easter by Bach, Handel and Haydn at King’s College Cambridge

March 11, 2009
You don’t have to be a believer to appreciate the great Christian cultural legacy – soaring Gothic cathedrals, the cadences of the English language of the King James Bible, and a canon of sacred music that could keep you enthralled for a lifetime.

Easter’s the high point of the Christian calendar, which usually means some great sacred music gigs.

This year’s Easter offering by King’s College Cambridge is mouth-watering. The highlights are Handel’s Messiah, Bach’s St John Passion and a celebration of Haydn.

I’m going to the Bach gig on Wed 8 April. King’s is one of the great iconic music venues of the English-speaking world; it’s my first visit, so I’m counting the days.

www.kings.cam.ac.uk/chapel/foundation

Gerry Smith

Mozart, Handel, Purcell: a classical feast on Radio 3

March 2, 2009
There’s classical riches aplenty to feast on in the next few weeks:

* Mozart: the great man’s latter days are celebrated in Radio 3’s Composer Of The Week on BBC Radio 3 this week – 1200 and 2200.

* Handel: all the operas on Radio 3, every Thursday afternoon from 2 – they’re revelatory.

* Purcell: a feast of the 17thC composer as Radio 3 devotes the weekend of 21/22 March to the great man.

Great musicians… great radio station…

Many BBC Radio 3 programmes are broadcast live online. Some are also accessible online via iPlayer for a short period after transmission:

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer

Gerry Smith

Bob Dylan, American folk, Handel

January 30, 2009
FREE! Music for grown-ups on the BBC in the next 10 days

Hidden among its vast TV and radio output, the BBC broadcasts some magnificent music for grown-ups every week of the year. And it’s all free – well, sort of….

Friday 30 Jan
1400 Cecilia Bartoli in Handel’s opera Rinaldo Act 3 – BBC Radio 3
2100 Folk America (2/3) – BBC4

Sat 31 Jan
2200 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Sun 1 Feb
2000 Folk America (2/3) – BBC4
2100 Neil Young, Don’t Be Denied – BBC4
2200 Neil Young, In Concert (1971) – BBC4
2400 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC 6Music

Tues 3 Feb
2355 Joni Mitchell, In Concert – BBC4
0105 Joan Baez, In Concert – BBC4
0135 Neil Young, In Concert (1971) – BBC4

Wed 4 Feb
2100 Buddy Holly, Arena (1985) – BBC4

Thurs 5 Feb
1400 Handel’s opera Il Pastor, overture & Act 1 – BBC Radio 3
2300 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2
0055 Later… Folk America – BBC4

Fri 6 Feb
1400 Handel’s opera Il Pastor Acts 2&3 – BBC Radio 3
2100 Folk America (3/3) – Blowin’ In The Wind – BBC4
2200 Dylan At Newport – The Other Side Of The Mirror – BBC4
2320 Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee, In Concert – BBC4

Online access: many BBC radio programmes are broadcast live online – please see the channels’ web sites for details. Some BBC radio and TV programmes are also accessible online via iPlayer for a short period after transmission:

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer

All of the musicians listed above are profiled in my new book, Music For Grown-Ups. For full details, please click on the book cover at the top left of the Home Page of the master website:

www.musicforgrown-ups.com

Gerry Smith

Dylan, Haydn, Handel

January 13, 2009
FREE! Music for grown-ups on the BBC in the next 10 days

Hidden among its vast TV and radio output, the BBC broadcasts some magnificent music for grown-ups every week of the year. And it’s all free – well, sort of….

Wed 14 Jan
1200 & 2200 Handel, Composer Of The Week – BBC Radio 3
(3/5, continues Thurs-Fri)

Thurs 15 Jan
2300 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Sun 18 Jan
2400 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC 6Music

Mon 19 Jan
1200 & 2200 Haydn, Composer Of The Week – BBC Radio 3
(1/5, continues Tues-Fri)

Thurs 22 Jan
1400 Handel’s opera Agrippina Acts 1 & 2 – BBC Radio 3
2300 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Friday 23 Jan
1400 Handel’s opera Agrippina Act 3 – BBC Radio 3
2100 Folk America – Birth Of A Nation (1/3) – BBC4

Online access: many BBC radio programmes are broadcast live online – please see the channels’ web sites for details. Some BBC radio and TV programmes are also accessible online via iPlayer for a short period after transmission:

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer

And Dylan, Haydn and Handel are profiled in my new book, Music For Grown-Ups, published on 15 Jan 2009.

For full details, please click on the book cover at the top left of the Home Page of the master website:

www.musicforgrown-ups.com

Gerry Smith

Handel: Composer Of The Year, recommended in Music For Grown-Ups, the new book

January 12, 2009
Handel is one of four Composers Of The Year selected by BBC Radio 3 for 2009.

The major celebration concerns the broadcasting of every one of his 42 operas, which started last week. And this week, Handel’s the subject of the consistently fine Radio 3 series, Composer Of The Week, broadcast at 1200 and 2200 each weekday and online at:

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer

Handel’s also highly recommended in Music For Grown-Ups – the book I’ve been working on while writing this daily column for the past six years – and now available.

Music For Grown-Ups – the book – celebrates 171 musicians from all genres, summarizing their art, recommending their best CDs and explaining why you might wish to give them a try.

Like the website, the book’s coverage is “seriously eclectic”, covering genres from rock to jazz, opera to country, blues to folk and many, many more.

Copies bought directly from the Music For Grown-Ups master website are supplied with an exclusive bonus not available from any retailer.

For full details, please click on the book cover at the top left of the Home Page of the master website:

www.musicforgrown-ups.com

Gerry Smith

Handel, Dylan, Morrissey

January 6, 2009
FREE! Music for grown-ups on the BBC in the next 10 days

Hidden among its vast TV and radio output, the BBC broadcasts some magnificent music for grown-ups every week of the year. And it’s all free – well, sort of….

Wed 7 Jan
1200 & 2200 Purcell, Composer Of The Week – BBC Radio 3
(3/5, continues Thurs-Fri)

Thurs 8 Jan
2300 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Sat 10 Jan
2300 Roy Orbison, Legends – BBC4
2400 Roy Orbison And Friends: A Black & White Night – BBC4
(2350, Morrissey, new single video – C4)

Sun 11 Jan
2400 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC 6Music

Mon 12 Jan
1200 & 2200 Handel, Composer Of The Week – BBC Radio 3
(1/5, continues Tues-Fri)

Thurs 15 Jan
2300 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Fri 16 Jan
2000 Karajan: Beauty As We See It – BBC4

Online access: many BBC radio programmes are broadcast live online – please see the channels’ web sites for details. Some BBC radio and TV programmes are also accessible online via iPlayer for a short period after transmission:

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer

And nearly all of the musicians listed above are profiled in my new book, Music For Grown-Ups, published on 15 Jan 2009 – details at:

www.musicforgrown-ups.com

Gerry Smith

Handel, Keith Richards, Prog Rock

December 23, 2008
FREE! Music for grown-ups on the BBC in the next 10 days

Hidden among its vast TV and radio output, the BBC broadcasts some magnificent music for grown-ups every week of the year. Xmas/New Year is particularly good. And it’s all free – well, sort of….

Wed 24 Dec
1200 & 2200 Puccini, Composer Of The Week (3/5, continues Thurs-Fri) – BBC Radio 3
1830 Carols from King’s – BBC2
1900 Bach at Christmas (3/3) – BBC Radio 3
2200 Bach, Christmas Oratorio from Weimar (4/6, concludes Thurs) – BBC Four

Thurs 25 Dec
1400 Festival Of Nine Lessons & Carols, from King’s – BBC Radio 3
1500 Hansel und Gretel, from Covent Garden – BBC2
1950 Handel’s Messiah, LSO/Davis, from The Barbican – BBC Four
2300 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Fri 26 Dec
1400 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC 6Music
2200 Quincy Jones: The Many Lives Of Q – BBC Four

Sat 27 Dec
2200 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Mon 29 Dec
1200 Berlioz, Composer Of The Week (1/5, continues Tues-Fri) – BBC Radio 3
2400 Keith Richards, My Top Ten (1/2) – BBC 6Music

Tues 30 Dec
2400 Keith Richards, My Top Ten (2/2) – BBC 6Music

Thurs 1 Jan
1400 Gounod’s Faust, with Alagna and Gheorghiu – BBC Radio 3
2300 Bob Dylan, Theme Time Radio Hour – BBC Radio 2

Fri 2 Jan
2100 Prog at the BBC – BBC Four
2200 Prog Rock Britannia – BBC Four

Online access: many BBC radio programmes are broadcast live online – please see the channels’ web sites for details. Some BBC radio and TV programmes are also accessible online via iPlayer for a short period after transmission:

www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer

And on the commercial networks:

Thurs 25 Dec
1810 The Three Tenors – More4

Sun 28 Dec
2400 White Stripes Live In Blackpool – 4Music

Gerry Smith