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Regular Features
Live in Studio 4A
Our showcase for artists invited to perform on the program and talk about their music
The PT 50
Our list of 50 essential classical CDs
Piano Puzzlers
Bruce Adolphe's "name that composer" piano quiz
Nikolaus Harnoncourt
and the Vienna Philharmonic
Nikolaus Harnoncourt Conductor Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the venerable Vienna Philharmonic have just wrapped up a seven-city American tour. NPR's Lisa Simeone caught up with Harnoncourt in Washington, DC to discuss his thoughts on the music.
Harnoncourt also reflects on that waltz composing dynasty with which the Philharmonic will forever be linked -- the Strausses.

Schubert's "Tragic" Symphony
How could Schubert, at the early age of 19, write about tragedy? Harnoncourt points to the death of Schubert's mother, as well as the shared sentiments of melancholy, pessimism, and at the same time joy among the Viennese people. He also reveals the demoralizing effect that Italian composer Gioacchino Rossini's "brilliant" music had on the classic Viennese composers, including Schubert and Beethoven. (6:01)

Dvorák and the music of Bohemia
Harnoncourt delves into Dvorák's close connection to his homeland and the wealth of folkloric music in Bohemia. Harnoncourt claims that all Slavonic music possesses a sense of homesickness. (4:17)

Dvorák and the New World
Does Dvorák's "New World" Symphony sound more American or Czech? (2:59)

Keeping music fresh
How does Harnoncourt get something new out of a work he has conducted many times before? (1:59)

Universality of the waltz
Why does everyone around the world love the waltz? Harnoncourt believes it has to do with the melting pot mentality of the Viennese. (3:47)

The Strauss Dynasty
Harnoncourt illustrates how the music of Johann Sr., Johann Jr., Josef and Eduard compare. (1:37)

Orchestras on tour
Will orchestras continue to tour despite the huge monetary expense? Harnoncourt asserts the importance of spreading different orchestral sounds around the world and argues that you can't put a price on art. (1:48)

The 2003 Vienna Philharmonic New Year's Day Concert

Known as the world's most popular classical music concert, the event is broadcast to more than one billion viewers and listeners around the globe. From the Golden Hall of the Musikverein in the heart of Old Vienna, Nikolaus Harnoncourt conducts the world-famous Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in a program featuring the music of Austria's favorite sons: the Strauss family -- Johann Sr., his son, Johann Jr., and his brother, Josef -- plus Carl Maria von Weber, Hector Berlioz, and Johannes Brahms.
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The Vienna Philharmonic in the PT 50

Beethoven | Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67
Vienna Philharmonic
Carlos Kleiber, conductor
Deutsche Grammophon 447 400-2
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(with Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 in A major, Op. 92)

Brahms | Symphony No. 4 in E minor, Op. 98
Vienna Philharmonic
Carlos Kleiber, conductor
Deutsche Grammophon 457 706-2
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Purchase this CD

In Depth