Wednesday, July 15, 2015


What an epic week I've had! And in the best way: I played, for hopefully the first time of many times in my career, Ein Heldenleben. For my non-classical readers out there it's a tone poem by Richard Strauss and translates to A Hero's Life. It's been one of my favourite symphonic works to listen to and I was so excited to get this opportunity to play it in a professional orchestra. Even if you don't like classical music please have a listen. My favourite moment is at 29'12". It's actually orgasmic. There's something compellingly heroic about E flat major (thanks Beethoven for the Eroica symphony!) and the climb up to this climax is incredible. I actually had goosebumps playing it and being swept up by the horns.

This video is Mariss Jansons conducting the Symphonie Orchester der Bayerischen Rundfunks.
Having wiki-ed Heldenleben I found that Strauss actually titled movements (although it's played straight through, the titles are basically like those of Alpinesinfonie to be found on a much older blog post) and apparently he requested they be removed so they're not in later editions. For first-time listeners I think it might be nice to know them:

1. Der Held (The Hero)
2. Des Helden Widersacher (The Hero's Adversaries)
3. Des Helden Gefährtin (The Hero's Companion)
4. Des Helden Walstatt (The Hero at Battle)
5. Des Helden Friedenswerke (The Hero's Works of Peace)
6. Des Helden Weltflucht und Vollendung (The Hero's Retirement from this World and Consummation)

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