Compact Discoveries
a series of one-hour radio programs produced, written, hosted, recorded and edited by Fred Flaxman
©2003 by Compact Discoveries, Inc.

Program 46
"Music for Insomniacs"

MUSIC: Ravel: Pavane for a Dead Princess, performed by the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leonard Slatkin [Telarc CD-80558, track 1] under the following: [6:32]

FLAXMAN: Welcome to Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide, Fred Flaxman. The music in the background is Pavane for a Dead Princess by the French composer Maurice Ravel. It is performed by the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leonard Slatkin.

In my opinion the Pavane is one of the most beautiful tunes ever written. It is also one of the most relaxing. In fact it is so relaxing, I give it my highest recommendation as a piece to put on your compact disc player when you have trouble falling asleep.

The next hour will be devoted completely to this kind of soft, beautiful, hypnotizing music. I call this program "Music for Insomniacs," and I must start with a warning: Listening to this program while driving or operating machinery may be hazardous to your health. Although I'll come back between selections to wake you up, I can't be legally or morally responsible for whatever happens to you if you ignore my warning. And I would hate to lose a single listener!

MUSIC: up until the end of the above piece

FLAXMAN: Maurice Ravel's Pavane for a Dead Princess. Leonard Slatkin led the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra on a Telarc compact disc called "Night Air: The relaxing side of classical music."
Let's hear two more cuts from the same CD. First Erik Satie's Gymnopédie No. 1. Then Ralph Vaughan Williams' Fantasia on Greensleeves.

MUSIC: Satie: Gymnopédie No. 1 with the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leonard Slatkin Telarc CD-80558, track 4] [2:47]

MUSIC: Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on Greensleeves with the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leonard Slatkin Telarc CD-80558, track 12] [4:27]

FLAXMAN: Leonard Slatkin led the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra on a Telarc compact disc in Erik Satie's Gymnopédie No. 1 followed by Vaughan Williams' Fantasia on Greensleeves.

You are listening to Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide, Fred Flaxman, and in this hour we are listening to "Music for Insomniacs."

Next, Eiji Oue leads the Minnesota Orchestra in Tchaikovsky's Andante Cantabile from his String Quartet No. 1 on a Reference Recordings CD. The second movement of the string quartet was based on a folk song. The string orchestra arrangement which we hear now is by Clark McAlister.

MUSIC: Tchaikovsky Andante Cantabile with the Minnesota Orchestra conducted by Eiji Oue [Reference Recordings RR-99CD, track 10] [7:01]

FLAXMAN: Tchaikovsky's Andante Cantabile from his String Quartet No. 1, Opus 11. Eiji Oue led the Minnesota Orchestra on a Reference Recordings compact disc.

You are listening to "Music for Insomniacs" on this hour of Compact Discoveries. I'm your guide, Fred Flaxman.

I'm usually so exhausted by the time I go to bed that I fall asleep quite promptly. Nevertheless I keep a CD player on my night table along with a small collection of very special classical compact discs. You are listening to pieces from these CDs now. The one by the Minnesota Orchestra is called "Reveries." The title piece, originally written for piano, is by Debussy.

MUSIC: Debussy: Reverie, the Minnesota Orchestra conducted by Eiji Oue [Reference Recordings RR-99CD, track 2] [4:28]

FLAXMAN: Reverie, originally written for piano by Claude Debussy. The Minnesota Orchestra was conducted by Eiji Oue.

Tomaso Giovanni Albinoni lived from 1671 until 1751. He is known today for one piece and one piece alone: an Adagio for Strings. But if he were to miraculously come back from the dead and hear this piece now, he might not recognize it. A bass part and fragments of a melody were all that were discovered in a library in Dresden only after the Second World War by an Italian musicologist named Remo Giazotto. Giazotto reconstructed the piece that is so popular today.

Here, it is played by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Charles Rosekrans on a Telarc compact disc.

MUSIC: Albinoni: Adagio for Strings, performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Charles Rosekrans [Telarc CD-80562, track 4] [10:34]

FLAXMAN: The Adagio for Strings by Albinoni as reconstructed by Giazotto. Charles Rosekrans led the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

You are listening to "Music for Insomniacs" on this hour of Compact Discoveries. I warned you at the beginning of this program that it might be dangerous to drive while listening. I hope you pulled over to the side and parked since then.

We've heard very relaxing music by French, English, Russian and Italian composers so far. Well, American composers can put you to sleep with the best of them. As living proof, here's some by Samuel Barber. Better set your alarm.

MUSIC: Barber: Agnus Dei (based on Adagio for Strings), with the Robert Shaw Festival Singers conducted by Robert Shaw; Arietha Lockhart, soprano [Telarc CD-80503, track 9] [10:58]

FLAXMAN: Samuel Barber's Agnus Dei, based on the composer's famous Adagio for Strings, but even more hypnotic. If that piece doesn't help insomniacs fall asleep, I don't know what will. This was from a Telarc CD called "American Adagios."

You are listening to Compact Discoveries. This hour is devoted to "Music for Insomniacs." I'm your guide, Fred Flaxman.

In this program I am suggesting music which will help you fall asleep. But I also want to wish you pleasant dreams. Love dreams preferably, as in Franz Liszt's Liebesträume No. 3 as performed by harpist Elizabeth Hainen on a Naxos compact disc.

MUSIC: Liszt: Liebesträume No. 3 performed by harpist Elizabeth Hainen [Naxos 8.555791, track 1] [5:28]

FLAXMAN: Liebesträume No. 3 by Franz Liszt, performed by harpist Elizabeth Hainen.

MUSIC [under the following]: Schubert/Godowsky: Gute Nacht (Good Night) performed by Konstantin Scherbakov, piano [Marco Polo 8.225187, track 4]

FLAXMAN: We conclude this hour of "Music for Insomniacs" with a song by Franz Schubert which Leopold Godowsky has transcribed for piano. It is called, most appropriately, Gute Nacht (Good Night). And that is just what I wish you. The pianist is Konstantin Scherbakov.

MUSIC: up, then under the following:

FLAXMAN: You have been listening to Compact Discoveries. I hope you have enjoyed this program. My name is Fred Flaxman, and you can reach me in care of this station or by e-mail at compactdiscoveries@fredflaxman dot com.

Compact Discoveries is a production of Compact Discoveries, Incorporated, and is a presentation of WXEL-FM, West Palm Beach, Florida.

MUSIC: ends at 58:00

 
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