2013/11/29, 12:04:48, UTC

 Antonin Dvorak: Carnival Overture, Op. 92

From the first, Antonin Dvorák was always a strong advocate for his native Czech folk music. He even insisted to his German publisher (who granted him a contract at the urging of fellow composer Johannes Brahms) that the Czech titles for his works be printed on the covers of his works. By the time he reached his 50th year, in 1891, he was teaching composition at the Prague Conservatory of Music, demonstrating to his students how one could deftly set folk themes in classical forms. His Symphony No. 8 and Requiem recently completed, Dvorák began at this time to write shorter orchestral works in the form of overtures and tone poems. Carnival is the center of a triptych of overtures composed on the themes of "Nature, Life, and Love." He began writing the first piece, In Nature's Realm, in March 1891; Carnival followed, depicting life, and Othello, representing love, was completed in January, 1892. Dvorák conducted the overtures at their premiere in Prague on April 28, 1892, at a concert that became his farewell appearance before took the directorship of the new National Conservatory of Music in New York. The three pieces were also performed as his welcome to the U.S. at a concert in Carnegie Hall later that October. According to the composer's own program note, Carnival depicts "a lonely, contemplative wanderer reach[ing] at twilight a city where a festival is in full swing. On every side is heard the clangor of instruments, mingled with shouts of joy and the unrestrained hilarity of people giving vent to their feelings in songs and dances." The ebullient opening section with its rapid tempos and 'clangorous' percussion leads to a slower Andantino section, featuring a solo ostinato by English horn. The English horn is soon joined by flute to represent, as Dvorák wrote, "a pair of straying lovers." The festive motifs return and the overture ends with a breathless, brilliant coda. June 10, 2007 Program notes from http://www.barbwired.com/barbweb/programs/dvorak_carnival.html

Source type: Recording
Ambisonic order: F (4 ch) 1st order 3D
Recording device: Alesis HD24
Microphone name: Calrec Soundfield MkIV #99
Capsule type: Capsules replaced by SFR in 2004
Calibration method: Richard Lee tweaked circuitry

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