Barber, Samuel

February 4, 2013, 7:00 pm

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Samuel Barber was only 28 years old when Arturo Toscanini premiered his Adagio for Strings in 1938 with the NBC Symphony Orchestra. He was an overnight success and became the most performed composer in the United States: His music is mostly unaffected by the modern tendencies of his time – he was out of step during the first half of the 20th century. Samuel Barber was as much a cosmopolitan as a romantic lyricist, and his writing unmistakably has its fixed stars: Bach, Brahms, and Fauré. We’ll explore his world, life, and music in this week’s program and finally face the inevitable question: A huge success at such a young age – a blessing or a curse?

Playlist

Episode 1

Samuel Barber: Adagio for Strings (excerpt)
NY Phil/Bernstein
CBS 38484
1:07

Barber: Overture to the School for Scandal (excerpt)
NY Phil/Schippers
Sony 62837
1:56

Barber:  Three Songs, Op. 2; “The Daisies” 
Hampson, baritone; Browning, piano
DG 435867-2
1:20

Barber: Interlude No. 1, “Adagio for Jeanne”
John Browning, piano
Musicmasters 67122
6:38

Barber: Serenade for String Orchestra, Op. 1
Symphony of the Air/ Golschmann
Van 1649
8:48

Barber: “Dover Beach”
Curtis String Quartet; Barber, baritone
Pearl 0049
7:50

Barber: Overture to the School for Scandal
NY Phil/ Schippers
Sony 62837
7:32

Barber: Sonata for Cello & Piano, Op. 6, II & III
Díaz, violoncello; Sanders, piano
Dorian 90241
10:47

Barber: Three Songs, Op. 2, “Bessie Bobtail”
Hampson, baritone; Browning, piano
DG 435867-2
2:45

Episode 2

Barber: Music for a Scene from Shelley
Symphony of the Air/ Golschmann
Van 1649
8:52

Barber: Three Songs, Op. 10, “I Hear an Army” 
Hampson, baritone; Browning, piano
DG 338002
2:40

Barber: String Quartet in B Minor, Op. 11
Emerson String Quartet
DG 435864
16:33

Barber: Symphony No. 1, Op. 9
NY Phil/Walter
Pearl 49
17:45

Barber: “A Nun Takes the Veil”, Op. 13 No. 1
Horne, mezzo soprano; Katz, piano
RCA 68771
1:42

Barber: String Quartet, Op. 11, finale (excerpt)
Emerson String Quartet
DG 435864
1:46

Episode 3

Barber: Overture to the School for Scandal (excerpt)
NY Phil/Schippers
Sony 62837
1:02

Barber: First Essay for Orchestra, Op. 12
Royal Scottish Nat’l Orch/Alsop
Naxos 559024
8:12

Barber: Four Songs, Op. 13, “Sure on This Shining Night” 
Studer, soprano; Browning, piano
DG 338002
2:22

Barber: Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 14, I & II
St. Paul Chamber Orch/Wolff; Hahn, violin
Sony 89029
19:36

Barber: “A Stopwatch and an Ordinance Map”, Op. 15
Symphony of the Air/Golschmann; Robert DeCormier Singers
Van 1649
5:54, :34

Barber: Capricorn Concerto, Op. 21, III
St. Louis Symphony/Slatkin;Bowman, oboe; Slaughter, trumpet; Berg, flute
RCA 68283
4:47

Barber: Excursions, Op. 20, III & IV + II
John Browning, piano
Musicmasters 67122
​5:56 + 1:29

Episode 4

Barber: Knoxville Summer of 1915
Orchestra of St. Luke’s/Previn; Battle, soprano
DG 437787
14:50

Barber: Medea’s Meditation and Dance of Vengeance, Op. 23a
St. Louis Symphony/Slatkin
EMI 86561-2
13:05

Barber: Summer Music for Wind Quintet
NY Phil Quintet
Boston Skyline 137
11:35

Barber: A Hand of Bridge, Op. 35 (excerpt)
Symphony of the Air/Golschmann; soloists
Van 1649
5:54

Barber: Souvenirs, Op. 28, VI + IV
Browning & Slatkin, pianos
RCA 60732
2:09 + 1:36

Episode 5

Barber: “Must the Winter Come so Soon?” fr. Vanessa
Met Opera Orchestra/Mitropoulis; Steber, soprano
RCA 7899
2:33

Barber: Vanessa,Op. 32, “Intermezzo”
Columbia Symphony Orch/Schippers
Sony 62837
4:07

Barber: Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 1, Op. 38, I
St. Louis Symphony Orch/Slatkin; Browning, p.
RCA 60732
14:29

Barber: Canzone for Flute & Piano, Op. 38a
Baxtresser, flute; Margalit, piano
EMI 86561
4:26

Barber: Fadograph of a Yestern Scene, Op. 44
Royal Scottish Nat’l Orch/Alsop
Naxos 8.559135
9:37

Barber: Canzonetta for Oboe & Strings
Royal Scottish Nat’l Orch/Alsop; Rancourt, oboe
Naxos 8.559135
8:45

Barber: Hermit Songs Op. 29,“Promiscuity”, “The Monk and his Cat”  
Price, soprano; Barber, piano
RCA 61983
2:56

Barber: Souvenirs, Op. 28, Waltz (excerpt)
Slatkin & Browning, pianos
RCA 60732-2
1:57