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Intimate Conversations: Conversations with Samuel Rhodes and David Finckel

This week Bill has conversations with two chamber musicians with over 100 years of great music-making experiences between them: Samuel Rhodes, former violist of the Juilliard Quartet, and David Finckel, former cellist of the Emerson Quartet and co-Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Rhodes describes the musical dialogues exchanged by the Juilliard Quartet, and we will listen to them performing Ravel, Carter, and Brahms. Then Bill turns to Finckel, who tells us about his admiration for violinist Oscar Shumsky and German baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. The Emerson and Juilliard quartets will both play music of Bartok for us.  Lastly, Finckel will describe the devastation that lies deep within Shostakovich’s string quartets.

Program 1

Violist Samuel Rhodes joins Bill in describing the musical dialogues exchanged by the instruments of Juilliard Quartet performing music from such composers as Ravel, Carter and Brahms. Join Bill in bidding the 44-year-long renowned performer a proper farewell as he asks Rhodes about what makes these pieces special to him. 

Smetana: String Quartet #1 In E Minor, From My Life, I
Juilliard Quartet
Sony 63302
Brahms: String Quartet #2 In A Minor, Op. 51/2, I
Juilliard Quartet
Sony 66285
Carter: String Quartet #2 (excerpt)
Juilliard Quartet
Sony 47229
Ravel: String Quartet In, II
Juilliard Quartet
Sony 62712
Haydn: String Quartet In D, Op. 20/4, III
Juilliard Quartet
Sony 62712
Bartók: String Quartet #5, SZ 102, III
Juilliard Quartet
Sony 62712
Mendelssohn: String Quartet #2 In A Minor, Op. 13, III
Juilliard Quartet
Sony 60579


Program 2

Learn what inspired Samuel Rhodes to begin playing the viola while working alongside Walter Trampler. Also, hear what classifies as agitation, and a woman's loyalty, or lack thereof, within these pieces. 

Brahms: String Quartet No.3 in B-flat Major, Op. 67
III. Agitato- Allegretto non troppo
Juilliard String Quartet
Sony 66285
Beethoven: Quartet No. 14 In C-sharp Minor, Op. 131
I. Adagio, Ma Non Troppo e Molto Espressivo
II. Allegro Molto Vivace
Juilliard String Quartet
CBS 37873
6:21, 3:03
Schoenberg: Verklärte Nacht, Op. 4
Sehr Langsam Breiter Schwer Betont: Schwer Betont
Sehr Breit und Langsam
Sehr ruhig
Juilliard String Quartet w/ Walter Trampler, vla.; Yo-Yo
Ma, vc.
Sony 62709
3:44, 15:39
Sibelius: String Quartet in D minor, Op. 56, Voces Intimae
V. Allegro
Juilliard String Quartet
Sony 48193
Program 3

This time, join Bill in seeing off a 34-year-long performing cellist, David Finckel of the Emerson String Quartet, as he tells the stories of how he started with his father's help. Finckel describes the inspiring feeling he gained from Rostropovich's performance, and Finckel's budding friendship with the world-famous cellist and pianist.

Beethoven: String Quartet Op.59 No. 1, Rasumovsky, I
Emerson String Quartet
DG 447075
Edwin Finckel/Boyd Raeburn: Boyd Meets Stravinsky (excerpt)
Boyd Raeburn Band
Ann Ronell, arr. E. Finckel: Variations on a Theme:
Willow Weep for Me
Finckel, vc.; Wu Han p.
Artistled 19902
Bach, arr. Finckel: Adagio from Toccata in C minor
Finckel Cello Quartet
Saint-Saëns: Concerto No. 1 for Cello & Orchestra
Orchestra; Rostropovich, vc.
Rachmaninoff: “O never sing to me again”
Rostropovich, p.; Galina Vishnevskaya, s.
DG 471620
Dvorák: Trio in f, Op. 65, Poco Adagio
Wu Han, p.; Philip Setzer, v.; David Finckel, vc.
Artistled 11201


Program 4

Hear from more of David Finckel's mentors, Oscar Shumsky and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau as they exhibit their own musically driven speech. Also, listen to both the Juilliard and Emerson String Quartets perform Bartok here. 

J.S. Bach: Sonata for Solo Violin, BWV 1001, Presto
Oscar Shumsky, v.
Nimbus 2557
Ernö Dohnányi: Ruralia Hungarica
Oscar Shumsky, v.; Seymore Lipkin, p.
Private collection
Franz Schubert: “Du Bist Die Ruh”, D. 776
“Sei Mir Gegrüsst”, Op. 20/1, D 741
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, bar.; Gerald Moore, p.
EMI 69503
Beethoven: Quartet In C, Op. 59/3 Rasumovsky,
III. Menuetto: Grazioso
IV. Allegro Molto
Guarneri Quartet
RCA 60457
Béla Bartók: String Quartet No. 4, Sz. 91, I, III
Juilliard String Quartet
Sony 63264
5:48, 5:13
Béla Bartók: String Quartet No. 4, Sz. 91, III
Emerson String Quartet
DG 423657
Franz Schubert: Quintet for Strings in C Major, IV
Emerson String Quartet; M. Rostropovich, vc.
DG 289 459 151


Program 5

David Finckel explains the inception of his musical and marital partnerships with pianist Wu Han, and the devastation that lies behind Shostakovich's quartet piece among many others. Finckel talks about the panic behind the time's music and indicates where a KGB knock can be heard within it. 

Mozart: Quartet in C Major, Dissonance, KV 465 (excerpt)
Emerson String Quartet
DG 427657
Brahms: Piano Quartet in C minor, Op. 60, III
Gilbert Kalish, p.; Jennifer Frautschi, v.; Paul Neubauer,
vla.; David Finckel, vc.
A. Scriabin: Piano Sonata No. 4 in F-sharp Major, Op. 30
Wu Han, piano
Artistled 10701
D. Shostakovich: Quartet No. 8, IV & V
Emerson String Quartet
DG 459670
Beethoven: String Quartet #13 In B-Flat, Op. 130
V. Cavatina, Adagio Molto (excerpt)
VI. Grosse Fuge, Espressivo (Op. 133), excerpt
Emerson String Quartet
DG 447075-04
Dvorák: Cello Concerto In B Minor, Op. 104, Finale
Taipei Symphony Orchestra/Felix Chiu-Sen Chen;
David Finckel, vc.
ArtistLed B000SVIXNC



The Exploring Music streaming website is supported by Mr. & Mrs. William Gardner Brown and the Richard P. and Susan Kiphart Family.  
You have opened up the world of Classical Music to me, where previously, it seemed too complicated.
Steffen Demeter
This is simply one of the very best radio programmes in the medium!...The study of the people, the times, and the events that inform the music we otherwise enjoy and even, heaven forbid, take for granted, brings the entire world of the music and the composer to life.
Walther Davies
There isn't a program you broadcast on Exploring Music" that isn't of interest. I find them all engaging. It is a combination of variety of subject, intellectual curiosity and your obvious enthusiasm which characterize your satisfying programs.
Michael Sanders
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I Love this program! I am in 7th grade and I am the complete opposite of the other kids. I am 4th chair in the orchestra and I love to read. But most of all, I LOVE classical music!
Claudia Wertz
Your show has helped open my mind and heart to this world of music, and every show I hear confirms my place in music and gives me new ideas for where I'd like to go with it in the future….I grew up with classical music as a child and always held it in my heart, but I didn't have the confidence to be a good student (or a good violinist.)
Christine Anderson
Listening to you is almost interactive.You invite us in with so many well modulated dramatic and informative comments, enticing, enthusiastic interpretations, and coherent, beautiful presentations. It's a privilege to follow you into the musical space you create.
Sally Rosenbaum
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