Fireworks have been used in many cultures for hundreds of years as a way to celebrate. Join host Liz Lyon and producer Melanie Renate as we explore pieces of music inspired by fireworks.
Episode 92 playlist
Claude Debussy: Feux d’Artifice — This piece is the last of Debussy’s 24 preludes. It is a challenging piece to play and can help you imagine a spectacular fireworks display over Paris.
LISTEN — Claude Debussy: Feux d’Artifice
Oliver Knussen: Flourish With Fireworks — Knussen wrote this piece to celebrate his friend Michael Tilson Thomas as he began his first season as principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra.
LISTEN — Oliver Knussen: Flourish With Fireworks
Peter Tchaikovsky: 1812 Overture - Finale — This piece features a cannon that adds to the intense celebratory flavor. When the music is played with cannons in concert, you might see a member of the orchestra within sight of those working the cannon who cues the team with the cannon so that its booming sound hits its mark within the music.
LISTEN — Peter Tchaikovsky: 1812 Overture - Finale
George Fredrich Handel: Music for the Royal Fireworks — This piece was written to celebrate peace in London. There were fireworks that accompanied the music when it was performed in April 1749. However, because rainy weather caused many firework misfires and one pavilion of the performance space caught fire, Handel’s music was the true star of the show.
LISTEN — George Fredrich Handel: Music for the Royal Fireworks
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