Here at the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra we care about our earth and nature. Today, let’s stop and think about how we can make a positive change and act on this year’s global theme “Trees for the Earth.”
Music associated with nature has been a popular inspiration for many composers over the years. In celebration of Earth Day 2016 we’ve created a playlist below for your enjoyment. Happy Earth Day!
The Four Seasons
Composed between 1723 and 1725, The Four Seasons is a set of four violin concertos based on spring, summer, fall and winter. Each piece features pictorial literalness, sounds that represent specific seasons including the arrival of spring, the merciless summer sun, the rustic harvest of autumn and the shivering and chattering teeth of winter.
Symphony No. 6 (The Pastoral Symphony)
The Pastoral Symphony was composed in two spurts of activity in the summers of 1807 and 1808. Principal elements of this pastoral style are stylizations of bird song, rustic dances, shepherds’ pipes, the bleating sheep themselves, water flowing, leaves rustling, etc. And, among the more violent aspects of nature, the thunderstorm. Beethoven employed all these devices, drawing his inspiration from observations made while living in the then-rural retreats of Heiligenstadt and Baden, outside Vienna.
Aquarium from Carnival of the Animals
Saint-Saëns traveled the world as a virtuoso pianist, visiting Africa, South America (he composed Uruguay’s national anthem), Russia – where he became friendly with Tchaikovsky – and the United States. Carnival of the Animals is a musical suite of 14 movements influenced by his travels. Aquarium, one of the more musically rich movements is evocative of a peaceful, dimly lit aquarium.
Symphony No. 1 (Winter Dreams)
Composed in 1866, Symphony No. 1 cost Tchaikovsky more labour and anguish than any other work. Perhaps this was to be expected, as it was his first major effort as a professional composer. The symphony’s title Winter Dreams is Tchaikovsky’s own and references the charm of the Russian winter landscape.