Berwald, Strauss and Schumann
Fresh winds are blowing in Berwaldhallen with three symphonic poems, all with a strong connection to clear blue skies and mountain tops beautifully enveloped in clouds! The cherry on top of the cake: Richard Strauss’ Alpine Symphony.
Mahler’s passing in 1911 inspired Strauss to reassume work on An Alpine Symphony, which he had begun twelve years earlier. Despite the name, the single movement piece is not a symphony, but depicts a day’s hike in the mountains, from sunrise to night-time. Lord Byron’s ghost story Manfred also takes place in the mountains, and has been interpreted by both Tchaikovsky, and, like here, by Robert Schumann. Franz Berwald’s Memory of the Norwegian Alps is one of his most national romantic pieces, full of longing, and with a clear inspiration from folk songs.