Dvořák: Legends Nos. 1, 9, 2
Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 2 in F minor, op.21
Schumann: Symphony No. 2 in C major, op.61
Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya (OBC)
Cristian Zacharias, piano and conductor
Schumann’s music is romanticism in its purest state, combining passion, longing, love, happiness, laughter, melancholy, and sadness. He was encouraged to compose symphonies by his wife, Clara, finally producing four masterpieces: “I would often like to smash my piano, it has become too feeble for my ideas”.The second symphony is intense and profound, composed at a very turbulent time in his life. It was premiered by his friend Felix Mendelssohn. Chopin launched his musical career in Vienna as a 19-year-old pianist and composer, with spectacular success. On his return to Warsaw, he composed two concertos for piano. The concerto performed today by Cristian Zacharias is a perfect blend of virtuoso musicianship and the lyricism of a young composer who was to become known, years later, as the “poet of the piano”. The programme opens with some of Dvořák’s freshest and most elegant pieces: a selection of his engaging Legends, composed originally for piano duet and orchestrated by the composer himself.