The legacy of French composer and conductor Hector Berlioz can be gleaned from his towering Symphonie Fantastique. First performed in 1830, it flaunts the composer's visionary orchestral techniques and its dynamic, sometimes volatile, use of the ideee fixe (a musical theme representing his beloved) hints at his polar personal temperament. Born December 11, 1803, he was a self-taught flautist, guitarist, and composer, and wrote small chamber pieces in his youth. He entered for the Prix de Rome four times before winning, which is an all too representative example French society's life-long disregard for the composer. Among his most important influences were Shakespeare, whose plays inspire three major works, the Irish Shakespearean actress Harriet Smithson, whom he wed after a fantastically bizarre courtship (which included composing Symphonie Fantastique), and Beethoven. Widely underappreciated, he relied on journalism and criticism for a living, producing the scathing satire of musical life in 19th century France in Evenings with the Orchestra. Between1842 and 1863, Berlioz spent most of his time touring Europe. He died on March 8, 1869.
Hector Berlioz Concert Films
Keeping Score - Berlious Symphonie Fantastique
Runtime: 1 hr 50 minIn 1827, Berlioz saw Harriet Smithson for the first time, playing Ophelia in a production of Hamlet. Hopelessly smitten, he turned his entire life upside down to meet her. Frantic months turned into years when he suddenly heard rumors about Harriet and another man. Believing himself cured, he wrote a ‘fantastic’ symphony complete with a special theme, the idée fixe, to represent his former obsession.
Hector Berlioz Top Tracks
Discovering Masterpieces of Classical Music - Ravel - Bolero
Runtime: 25 minThe “Bolero”, originally composed as a ballet, is Maurice Ravel's most successful work at all. The world famous melody of the “Bolero” has been featured in popular music, motion pictures and even video games. Pianist and writer Paul Roberts vividly explains the music and its structure and also lets the audience know why Ravel was a stringent critic of his own work.
St. Matthew's Passion
Johann Sebastian Bach
Runtime: 1 hr 33 minJohann Sebastian Bach composed the St. John Passion in Cöthen during the winter of 1722/23. The text is drawn from chapters 18 and 19 of the Gospel according to St. John, and includes some excerpts from St. Mathew and additional text from a Passion poem by the Hamburg town councillor Barthold Heinrich Brockes. The composer led the first performance at the Good Friday services on 7 April 1724 at St. Nicholas Church in Leipzig, where he had since become municipal music director and cantor of the Thomasschule. This Passion is heard less often today than the St. Matthew Passion, perhaps because the St. John Passion is in some ways more raw and evokes the anguish of the Passion more painfully than the St. Matthew work. A musician’s musician, an occasional firebrand and a constant paradox – Nikolaus Harnoncourt (born in 1929) is one of the most profound and intriguing conductors of our time. Considered one of the world’s leading specialists of Baroque music, he has long since turned his attention to Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, and even to Jacques Offenbach and Johann Strauss. He spent many years as a cellist with the Wiener Symphoniker before founding the "Concentus Musicus Wien" with his wife Alice in 1953. It soon became one of the world’s most respected ensembles specializing in the performance of early music on original instruments. In the 1970s, Harnoncourt joined forces with Jean-Pierre Ponnelle to stage a series of Monteverdi operas at the Zurich Opera House. This universally acclaimed cycle contributed to a renaissance of Monteverdi’s music and set standards for early Baroque performance practice. He later began to turn his attention more and more to the music of Mozart, whom he considers "the most romantic of all composers". Harnoncourt did not make his official debut at the Salzburg Festival until 1992. He has been conducting there regularly since then and is a sought-after guest conductor of such reputable ensembles as the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics, the Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.
Symphony No. 4 in G-Dur - The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (2010)
Runtime: 1 hr 7 minBernard Haitink is one of the most sought-after Mahler conductors of our day. In this concert of Mahler’s Fourth Symphony, recorded live at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, he conducts the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. The American Maria Ewing fascinates with her interpreation of the soprano solo featured in the work’s finale.
Bernard Haitink first conducted the Concertgebouw Orchestra in 1956.
Beginning in 1963, Haitink was chief conductor for 25 years, during which time the orchestra developed significantly. Particularly Haitink’s interpretations of Mahler and Bruckner made a worldwide impression. The Concertgebouw Orchestra was founded in 1888. On the occasion of its 100th anniversary in 1988, the orchestra officially received the appellation ‘Royal’.
Runtime: 2 hr 4 minGiuseppe Verdi - Nabucco movie was released Sep 25, 2007 by the Naxos studio. Igor Morosow, Bruno Ribeiro, and Gabriella Morigi star in this Festival St. Giuseppe Verdi - Nabucco movie Margarethen production of the Verdi opera with Ernst Maerzendorfer conducting the Europasymphony Orchestra & Chorus, 2007.
Robert Herzl directs this 2007 performance of Verdi's biblical opera NABUCCO, with Enrst Märzendorfer conducting the Europasymphony and Arad State Philharmonic Chorus Giuseppe Verdi - Nabucco video.
The Ring of the Nibelung - Götterdämmerung - Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires
Runtime: 1 hr 23 minTo honor Richard Wagner’s 200th birthday, Latin America’s famous opera house in Buenos Aires hosts a one-of-a-kind project: Performing Wagner’s powerful music drama “The Ring of the Nibelung” on stage in a single day. Stage Director Valentina Carrasco, who has worked with the award-winning Catalonian theatre group “La Fura dels Baus” for the past ten years, transposes the “Colón Ring” into the 1970s – the period of Argentina’s military dictatorship. Symbols of that age are seen on the costumes, while the characters also make references to the period in their behavior and gestures.
Keeping Score - Beethoven's Eroica
Ludwig van Beethoven
Runtime: 1 hr 51 minExplore the Eroica score to learn how Beethoven created this masterpiece. Learn how Beethoven wove the themes in Eroica to shape the emotional journey of the music. Find out why keys were so important to Beethoven. Hear insights about the music from MTT and the musicians of the San Francisco Symphony. And then, explore the stories behind the Eroica.