As it’s January I thought I would feature some pieces this month to put a smile on your face after that usual post-holiday gloom. The Listen Here buttons connect to Spotify where you can listen to pieces.
Beethoven’s Symphony No 4 ‘Pastorale’
I would not normally call myself a huge fan of Beethoven (I know…don’t know why but that’s how it is.) Anyway, I played this piece once with a conductor who imitated cows, sheep, birds etc while he conducted the 2nd movement. We thought he was a bit eccentric at the time but every time I play it now I hear his voice and smile when I play that movement.
Bach Brandenburg Concerto No 3
One of my favourite pieces to play and one that always cheers me up is Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No 3. This is the on with strings only (there are 6 of them with various solo instruments.) Bach around the time of writing these concertos was in the employ of Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Köthen. Unfortunately, by the early 1720s, the prince’s increased military expenses led to budget cuts in Bach’s orchestra. (We know what that’s like…) Bach decided that it might be wise to start seeking work elsewhere so wrote these concertos.
Piazzolla Four Seasons Buenos Aires
Tango inspired classical music? What's not to like! This is of one of the greatest works by the master of the Argentinean tango, Astor Piazzolla. I first discovered this piece about 6 years ago and honestly it is just so much fun to play! Click the link below for a recording of the Piazzolla along with the famous Vivaldi Four Seasons to compare.
How can a piano playing hedgehog not put a smile on your face?