26/05/23, 19:00

When Brno native, pianist Igor Ardašev, and I were planning the content of his three performances for the 2017/2018 Philharmonic season, in which he was our resident soloist, one of the pieces under consideration was Khachaturyan's Piano Concerto. However, due to the ongoing reconstruction of the Janáček Theatre, we abandoned this idea at the time with a heavy heart. Now, after five years, the time has come for us to return to it and realize it, notably under the baton of Petr Altrichter, the former chief conductor of the Brno Philharmonic.
Armenian composer Aram Khachaturyan (1903 to 1978) came out of Russian musical romanticism in his work; he proved his originality in particular by his masterful use of the influences of the folklore of the Transcaucasian peoples and the synthesis of European and Oriental sensibilities, unfolding not on the level of "Zhdanov" socialist realist intelligibility, populism and massism, but in the intentions of professional interest and extraordinary admiration for traditions. This is where characteristic features of his music stem from, such as quasi-improvisational broad-breathed (oriental) melodies or a penchant for vigorous motor rhythms. Khachaturian became famous primarily as the author of the ballets Gayans, Spartacus and Masquerade, as well as violin and piano concerts. All these works, to a greater or lesser extent, reflect the "internal program" of Armenian art of the 20th century, connecting three time zones - the tragic past, the creative present, and the bright future.
The last, sixth symphony of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840–1893) was created in an unusually short time. This is also apparent from a letter that the composer addressed to his nephew Vladimir Davydov in February 1893 (to whom he later dedicated the work): While traveling, it occurred to me to write (…) a symphony, this time programmatic, but with such a program that would remain a puzzle to everyone. Let them argue! (…) The program itself is highly permeated with subjectivity and I often cried a lot, composing it in my mind on my travels. Now, after my return, I began to write sketches, and my work went so feverishly and so quickly that in less than four days I had the first sentence completely finished, and the rest of the sentences were already forming clearly in my head. (…) In terms of form, this symphony will have a lot of new things and, for example, the finale will not be a thunderous Allegro, but rather an extremely long Adagio. And in August of the same year, in another letter to his nephew, he added to the symphony: ... personally, I definitely consider it the best and, above all, the most sincere of all my things. I like her like I didn't like any of my other musical children.

PETR ILYCH TCHAIKOVSKY Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74 "Pathetic"

Igor Ardashev piano
Brno Philharmonic
conductor Petr Altrichter