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MP3 Michelle Ende' and The Bay Area Philharmonic - The Symphony No. 4 in F Major; Opus 22 - The Pastoral

This music is literally an orchestral day in the country. Depicting a pastoral day, the symphony number four in four movements is followed up by pastoral depictions of Grant Wood paintings and a day in Cracker Country

7 MP3 Songs in this album (69:55) !
Related styles: CLASSICAL: Orchestral, CLASSICAL: Modernist

People who are interested in Aaron Copland Sir Edward Elgar Charles Ives should consider this download.

The Symphony Number Four in F Major; Opus 22 – The Pastoral - Movement One – Allegretto – The movement opens in a peaceful manner, suggesting the serenity of the country. The first theme is stated clearly and quietly and gives way to a rhythmic second theme, a bounding melody stated in an unhurried, but deliberate manner with all of the energy of morning. This gives way to another peaceful interlude, which is again interrupted by timpani and horns pounding out the second theme. A restatement of the first theme is engaged among various instruments in a fragmented manner fading to nothing. (9:59)

Movement Two – Andante con Moto – The movement is a lyrical depiction of the woods and fields near home in the early afternoon as cloudbursts and storms begin to form overhead. A slow lyrical theme is woven among counterpoint and harmonic variation to paint a sophisticated portrait of a lazy afternoon in the country. (9:09)

Movement Three – Allegro Moderato – A broad expansive theme in strings is announced and is taken over in a gentle manner suggesting the rippling of water and the coolness of a discovered mountain stream tumbling through the forest from above. A second theme is briefly used as an interlude and then it is back to the main theme and a grand ending. (10:27)

Movement Four – Allegrissimo – A theme is announced and it sounds like something from childhood and we are off chasing something, maybe our dog, maybe a butterfly. It doesn’t matter as we are in country and far away from the things that drive us crazy. So we chase, running hard, running hard until we need rest. As we sit catching our breath, we notice the view and how wonderful the countryside is. This second theme is stated among the various instruments until the solace is broken by the timpani leading to a climatic close, ending the work. (8:58)

Cracker Country; Opus 30 – The crack of a whip is heard at the outset of this piece and the work begins, introducing us to another time when Florida was originally being settled. Under live oak trees, banjo players strum, wood carvers whittle, and family meals are prepared. All is in good order here in this little village. We are back in the 1800s, when cattle and livestock were the mainstay of Florida and the “Cracker” was the man with the whip, directing his herd of livestock to the depot (the solitary bell) where the trains would take them north. (7:25)

The Spring Turning; Opus 31 – This tone poem is based on the 1936 Oil painting (of the same name) by Grant Wood depicting a lone horse and plow breaking the Iowa prairie. The broad Iowa sky is depicted by the piccolo and strings and the man, plow and horse are depicted by the lower strings. The oboe brings us a theme and the orchestra slowly works it to a climax. (14:12)

Stone City; Opus 32 – This tone poem is based on the 1930 Grant Wood painting of the same name. It depicts a small, sleepy village in Iowa. Once a bustling quarry, the town stands abandoned save for the small church. The work opens depicting the solitude of the town, heightened by the church bells. Echoes of the quarry blasting are heard in the timpani, and the business of the town in the trumpets. However, as with the town, all things man made give way to the nature surrounding it and the work closes as it began with church bells tolling the loneliness of the town. (9:33)

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