Igor stravinsky columbia symphony orchestra cbc symphony orchestra festival singers of toronto the s


As Nazi Germany extended its sphere of influence in the late 1930s and Hungary appeared in imminent danger of capitulation, Bartók found it impossible to remain there. After a second concert tour of the United States in 1940, he immigrated there the same year. An appointment as research assistant in music at Columbia University , New York City, enabled him to continue working with folk music , transcribing and editing for publication a collection of Serbo-Croatian women’s songs, a part of a much larger recorded collection of Balkan folk music. With his wife, the pianist Ditta Pásztory, he was able to give a few concerts. His health, however, was never very strong and had begun to deteriorate even before his arrival in the United States.

I never thought I would ever hear Stravinsky’s superlative recordings of “Orpheus” and “Apollo” for RCA on CD. What a gift! Thank You.

It is quite natural that Stravinsky expressed his fascination with and deep understanding of Ukrainian folk elements in his early orchestral compositions, as well as in his revolutionary ballets. Given his significant compositional output in that period, it is apparent that his inspiration was often drawn from the legends, melodies, and sounds of the Ukrainian tradition. In turn, Ukrainian culture is deeply rooted in the Kievan Rus’ and Trypillia cultures, themselves thousands of years old.

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By May 1910 Stravinsky was discussing his idea with Nicholas Roerich , the foremost Russian expert on folk art and ancient rituals. Roerich had a reputation as an artist and mystic, and had provided the stage designs for Diaghilev's 1909 production of the Polovtsian Dances . [15] The pair quickly agreed on a working title, "The Great Sacrifice" (Russian: Velikaia zhertva ); [16] Diaghilev gave his blessing to the work, although the collaboration was put on hold for a year while Stravinsky was occupied with his second major commission for Diaghilev, the ballet Petrushka . [15]

Igor Stravinsky conducting the Philharmonic Orchestra in rehearsal at the Royal Festival Hall, London. Terry Fincher/Getty Images hide caption


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