Soloist: Philip Fisher, piano
This piece was written by Shostakovich for his son Maxim’s 19th birthday, which is likely the reason it is much more upbeat than most of his music. As a youth, our guest pianist, Philip Fisher performed this piece for Maxim himself (Maxim being the first person to ever play it publicly.) Philip Fisher hails originally from Britain and studied at both the Royal Conservatory of Music and Juilliard in NYC.
Scheherazade is considered Rimsky-Korsakov’s most popular work, and is based on One Thousand and One Nights, sometimes known as The Arabian Nights. Steven Griffiths perhaps said it best:
“The reasons for its popularity are clear enough; it is a score replete with beguiling orchestral colors, fresh and piquant melodies, with a mild oriental flavor, a rhythmic vitality largely absent from many major orchestral works of the later 19th century, and a directness of expression unhampered by quasi-symphonic complexities of texture and structure.”
- Piano Concerto No. 2 in F major, Op. 102 – Dmitri Shostakovich
- Scheherazade, Op. 35 – Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
A pre-concert lecture about the repertoire by Dr. Ryan Dudenbostel starts at 2:15. Admission is free; but these are very popular, and fill fast!