Sunday Classics preview: A quick musical peek at the place in Italy that really captured Tchaikovsky's heart
Florence: Il Duomo. We hear, in orchestral guise, the end of the second movement, Adagio cantabile e con moto, of the Tchaikovsky string sextet Souvenir de Florence ("Memory of Florence"). We're going to hear the complete performance of this movement in the click-through.
In last Friday's preview we kicked off this composers' celebration of Italy with Tchaikovsky's Capriccio italien, a souvenir of the composer's happy visit to Rome. But the city that really captured his heart was Florence, which inspired one of his chamber masterpieces, the string sextet Souvenir de Florence (Memory of Florence). (For the record, the main work we heard in Sunday's post, "Young Felix Mendelssohn traveled to Italy, and when he returned home . . . ," was Mendelssohn's Italian Symphony.)
Tchaikovsky stressed that he was composing six solo parts that would combine in a unique way. Which hasn't stopped orchestras from beefing the sextet up to chamber-orchestra proportions. And I thought we would start tonight by listening to the glorious slow movement both in its composed form and then in orchestral guise. The orchestral version may not have been what the composer had in mind, but once you hear it, I think you'll understand why orchestras like to claim it as their own.
TO HEAR THE ADAGIO OF SOUVENIR DE
FLORENCE PLAYED BOTH WAYS, CLICK HERE