Composers of the Middle Romantic

Today, we con­tin­ue our occa­sion­al series fea­tur­ing com­posers from dif­fer­ent parts of the Roman­tic Era.

That means, essen­tial­ly, com­posers born around the first half of the 19th Cen­tu­ry, give or take a few decades — this musi­cal eras busi­ness is not an exact sci­ence).

In this pro­gramme, we are look­ing at music from around the mid­dle of the peri­od, with a few minor excep­tions to include some Good Stuff: in oth­er words, we’re fea­tur­ing com­posers born between around 1820 and 1840 (but as I say, don’t hold me to that).

Thus in today’s pro­gramme you can enjoy the likes of Brahms, Bruck­n­er, Franck, Saint-Saens, Wag­n­er, Mus­sorgsky and oth­ers, plus a few less­er-known per­son­al favourites, like Amer­i­can com­pos­er and vir­tu­oso pianist, Louis More­au Gottschalk (1829–69) — whom I tend to think of (com­plete­ly erro­neous­ly I sus­pect) as “Amer­i­ca’s Satie” because of his refresh­ing abil­i­ty to have a bit of fun.

Mind you, there is quite a bit of fun in the rest of today’s show, includ­ing Johannes Brahms’ rous­ing romp, the Aca­d­e­m­ic Fes­ti­val Over­ture (in a mar­vel­lous per­for­mance by the Colum­bia Sym­pho­ny Orches­tra con­duct­ed by Bruno Wal­ter). You don’t think of Brahms as par­tic­u­lar­ly light-heart­ed, but this piece is extreme­ly live­ly; and towards the end, the score urges the vio­lins to “Play as loud as pos­si­ble”. Can’t be bad.

Today’s pro­gramme is pre­sent­ed by Elrik Mer­lin and pro­duced by Radio Riel in con­junc­tion with our friends at the Alexan­dri­an Free Library Con­sor­tium of Sec­ond Life. You can lis­ten to the pro­gramme in-world now at, or sim­ply click here to start your play­er, if your brows­er is con­fig­ured to do so. Lis­ten­ers in the Unit­ed States are encour­aged to tune in using this link:

For more infor­ma­tion on the Alexan­dri­an Free Library, cur­rent exhibits and the work of Con­sor­tium mem­bers in gen­er­al, please vis­it the Alexan­dri­an Free Library web­site, or one of their branch­es in-world.

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