8. 9. 2021
OPENING CONCERT OF HARMONIA MORAVIAE 2021 FESTIVAL
Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic begins its new 2021-22 concert season in great style with the opening evening of the 19th Harmonia Moraviae Festival. This performance is also the inaugural concert for Robert Kružík, the Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic's new Chief Conductor, and putting her own unique stamp on this evening's programme is our soloist - the world-renowned Russian-German pianist Olga Scheps.
Beethoven had been contemplating his third piano concerto since 1796, working gradually on the piece over the next four years to enable it to be performed at his own benefit concert in Vienna in April 1800. His ambitious plan, however, did not succeed as he proved unable to complete the work in time, and he had to play another work at the concert. The concerto eventually received its first public performance three years later with the composer himself as the soloist when, as a matter of interest, he played the part entirely from memory, not having had enough time to commit the score to paper.
In the second half of the concert we hear Josef Suk's Symphony in E major, with the unmistakable influence of the composer's father-in-law Antonín Dvořák and also the evident inspiration of the music of Brahms. Suk began work on the first sketches of his symphony in London in 1897 but set the work aside once the first two movements were complete in order to give his full attention to other pieces he was writing, returning to the work later and completing it in July 1899. The symphony was premiered in Prague that November by the Czech Philharmonic under the baton of the then 25-year-old conductor Oskar Nedbal and was subsequently published by Simrock very soon after. The piece in four movements is classed as part of the composer's early work building on the tradition of Dvořák, with Suk's rich and typically lyrical melodies, markedly dynamic and colourful touches, finely honed instrumentation and solid formal structure.