On this day in classical music: Bela Bartok’s “Dance Suite” received its premiere in 1923 during a concert celebrating the 50th anniversary of the union of the Hungarian cities of Buda and Pest. The suite features six movements, a work that gave a nod to Hungarian, Romanian and Arabian melodies. Although the work has much to recommend it, the “Dance Suite” hasn’t become one of the composer’s most popular works. Listen to Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra perform first three movements. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZl55SGIzoU
On this day in the musical theatre: The musical “The Biograph Girl” opened in London in 1980. Featuring a score by David Heneker and Warner Brown, “The Biograph Girl” chronicled the silent film era and five pioneers of American cinema: Mary Pickford, Lillian Gish, D. W. Griffith, Mack Sennett and Adolph Zukor. The musical managed an abbreviated run of 57 performances.
Musical musings: The Biograph Girl” is a sweet lament for lost innocence and a minor miracle. This delightfully unassuming show contains the same naive charm as those early flicks’ themselves. – Jack Tinker in The London Daily Mail