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Symphonie fantastique

Past Event
Fri, 12. May 2023 | 19:30 UhrKKL Luzern, Konzertsaal

Extra concert | Symphonic concert

  • Sergej Prokofjew (1891 – 1953)

    • Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No.2 in G minor Op.16

  • Hector Berlioz (1803 – 1869)

    • Symphonie Fantastique Op. 14

The work and life of a composer cannot always be neatly separated, and certainly not in this case. Prokofiev’s Second Piano Concerto is probably one of the most demanding works in the piano concerto repertoire, especially in the horrendously difficult solo cadenza in the first movement. This is a man pouring out his rage, dejection and grief – grief for his good friend Maximilian Schmidthof, who succumbed to cancer at an early age. This is just as much autobiographical music as Hector Berlioz’s «Symphonie fantastique». In Paris, an English acting troupe gave a guest performance of Shakespeare’s «Hamlet». The role of Ophelia was played by the famous Harriet Smithson. Hector Berlioz, then a hot-headed 24-year-old, happened to be at the performance. He fell in love with this Ophelia, but she was unresponsive to the young composer’s feelings. (She was indeed to become his wife a few years later, unfortunately for her as well as him). This unrequited love gave the stimulus for an autobiographical symphony that would soon establish itself as the key work of Romantic French music.

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