Donald Macleod surveys the life and music of Russian-born composer Igor Stravinsky.

In this week’s episode, Donald explores the composer who is said, in his music, to have ushered in the 20th century: Igor Stravinsky. His name is probably still most associated with the utterly extraordinary, revolutionary evening that prompted that accolade – the premiere of The Rite of Spring in Paris on the 29th of May 1913. We’ll hear about his pivotal relationships with fellow musician Rimsky-Korsakov, his assistant Robert Craft and the impresario Sergei Diaghilev. Plus, Donald delves into some of the most formative periods in Stravinsky’s life: his creative move towards neo-classicism, the death of his wife, his lonely exile to the USA, and his experiments with serialist methods.

Music featured:
Rite of Spring
Scherzo in G minor
Four Etudes, Op 7, Nos 3 and 4
Symphony in E flat major (1st and 2nd movements)
Faun and Shepherdess
Scherzo Fantastique
The Firebird Suite
Three Movements from Petrushka
Pulcinella (Overture)
Mavra: Russian Song (arr for cello & piano)
Octet (2nd movement)
Symphony of Psalms
Concerto in E flat major ‘Dumbarton Oaks’
Ebony Concerto (1st and 2nd movements)
Scherzo a la Russe
Symphony in Three Movements
Rake’s Progress: Act I Scene 3 (excerpt)
Mass (Kyrie, Gloria)
In Memoriam Dylan Thomas
Movements for Piano and Orchestra
Agon: Act IV
The dove descending breaks the air
Canticum Sacrum

Presented by Donald Macleod
Produced by Martin Williams for BBC Wales

For full tracklistings, including artist and recording details, and to listen to the pieces featured in full (for 30 days after broadcast) head to the series page for Igor Stravinsky

And you can delve into the A-Z of all the composers we’ve featured on Composer of the Week here:

from Composer of the Week