Boston Symphony Orchestra Performs Russian Fireworks

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Thursday, October 22, 2015

Andris Nelsons makes his debut as the new Boston Symphony music director at Symphony Hall in Boston. Andris Nelsons makes his debut as the new Boston Symphony music director at Symphony Hall in Boston. (Chris Lee)

Listen to the archived broadcast of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus performing Russian orchestral works, recorded live on Thursday October 22. Jeff Spurgeon hosts with special guest, mezzo-soprano Susan Graham.

Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky takes listeners into medieval Kievan Rus' – swathes of land inhabited by East Slavic tribes. Depicting battle and victory against the Germanic Teutonic Knights, Prokofiev’s music recreates powerful aural scenes with the sheer power of a large orchestra and chorus.

Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances, a colorful orchestral suite marking the composer’s late style, resonates with Russian spark. Like Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique, it is embedded with the funereal Dies Irae chant and leads to a wild rousing finale.

Andris Nelsons first appeared with the Boston Symphony in 2011 to replace an ailing James Levine at Carnegie Hall. Subsequent appearances led to Nelsons' appointment in 2013 including a recent decision to extend his contract from 5 to 8 years. He studied conducting in St. Petersburg and is mentored by fellow Latvian conductor Mariss Jansons.

Program Details:

Boston Symphony Orchestra
Andris Nelsons, Music Director and Conductor
Nadezhda Serdyuk, Mezzo-Soprano
Tanglewood Festival Chorus
James Bagwell, Guest Chorus Conductor


PROKOFIEV Alexander Nevsky
RACHMANINOFF Symphonic Dances

We asked listeners to share their thoughts during the broadcast using #CHLive. Here is a collection of those tweets and photos:

Comments [1]

Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha, NJ from Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, Boonton, NJ

Who having seen the film ALEXANDER NEVSKY can forget the tremendous impact visually and dramatically. I sang the title role of Alexis in Prokofieff's THE GAMBLER in its professional opera premiere in 1957. His Peter and the Wolf, Classical Symphony and WAR AND PEACE did not prevail against the ignorance of Stalin who claimed he heard no melody.
Last Saturday, October 17th, I sang my very best of my entire operatic career in a repriese of my first of two ALL WAGNER 3 hour long solo concerts at the Isaac Stern Auditorium of Carnegie Hall of the Father's Day June 18th, 1995 event programming 14 selections which I calculated chronologically exemplified Wagner's special genius. I have had and continue to have a love affair with the music of RICHARD WAGNER. Two of my four solo three-hour long concerts in the main hall of CARNEGIE hALL have been ALL-WAGNER concerts. The concert was held at the New Life Expo at the N.Y.C. Pennsylvania Hotel on Saturday October 17th at 7 PM. All the selections sung at that concert may be heard in unretouched live performance of my singing them at Carnegie Hall by downloading them, free, at my Recorded Selections venue on my website On the home page alongside the 7 foot poster that was displayed at Carnegie Hall is a single page listing of my live concert program of the fourteen selections alongside pictures of me at my solo debut at the Hall there and my current appearance and info on my coaching Shakespeare and also all the Wagner opera roles as the director of the Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute in Boonton, NJ. My two Shakespeare operas will be on my websites in JULY 2017.

Oct. 24 2015 04:35 PM

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