Greatest cello music ever

Concerto for cello and orchestra by Antonín Dvorák, born this day in 1941.

slow movement performed by Jacqueline du Pré, Daniel Barenboim and the Chicago Symphony.



Flying waltz for legs of unequal length

Listen to the Valse Boiteuse by my all-time favorite composer, Erno Dohnanyi, celebrating his 140th birthday today.

This is from a suite of waltzes for orchestra (each one an independent gem) arranged by the composer for two pianos.   Vintage recording of the composer with Edward Kilenyi on the other piano.

This piece includes phrases of 5 beats.  The joke is that it is all in 3/4 time, and to demonstrate this there is an overlaid melody in straight hemiola 3/2 time, overlaid on each two measures.  In the full orchestral version it is easier to hear the 5-beat phrases in the winds, and then the second time through the 3/2 overlay in the strings.

Erno Dohnanyi

There is no commercial recording of this gorgeous and deeply moving composition by a Hungarian master of music.  The sound quality of this live recording isn’t great, but the music shines through.  Composed in 1953, when Dohnanyi was 76 years old, recorded in Budapest two years ago.