Steven Isserlis Plays Schumann
Steven Isserlis is a huge Schumann fan, and an enthusiastic advocate for his music, as performer, author, broadcaster and programmer.
He's also one of the finest and most thoughtful cellists around, an ideal interpreter for Schumann's personal, poetic Cello Concerto.
Schumann wasn't interested in the concerto form as a vehicle for the ego of a superstar soloist. He entrances his listeners not with virtuosity but with deep emotion, in music so expressive it could almost be improvised.
Liszt's short symphonic poem, Orpheus, is just the thing to whet our appetites for the Schumann.
He calls on two harps to represent Orpheus' lyre, a symbol across the centuries for the power of music itself. Liszt himself explained that he wanted to encapsulate 'the song radiated by every work of art'.
To complete this rich and engaging programme, Simone Young conducts Schubert's Fourth Symphony, the Tragic.
Don't be fooled by the melodramatic title (which Schubert added some time after completing it, aged just 19).
There's more vigour and drama than tragedy in its outer movements, framing a slow movement brimming with tenderness, and a jaunty minuet.
- Philharmonia Orchestra
- Simone Young conductor
- Steven Isserlis cello
- Liszt: Orpheus - symphonic poem, S.98
- Schumann: Cello Concerto
- Schubert: Symphony No.4 in C minor (Tragic)
Where to watch
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Dates & times
First broadcast: available from 7.30pm on Fri 30 Apr and available to buy until Fri 30 Jul.
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