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Debussy – Strauss – Novák (O)

Debussy – Strauss – Novák (O)

mon 10. february 2025, 19:30
Obecní dům Náměstí Republiky 5, Prague, cz
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180–1100 CZK
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Information about the concert

The three compositions chosen by Robert Jindra – Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra’s principal guest conductor – for his February concert are all their respective composers’ iconic pieces. Claude Debussy’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun has become the most typical example of musical impressionism besides his The Sea. With its special atmosphere, this composition is based on a poem by the symbolist Stéphane Mallarmé, depicting a hot summer afternoon in which the mythical demigod Faun rests on the seashore, whistling on his flute and reminiscing about his loves. Except for the first, all of Richard Strauss’ Four Last Songs deal with the theme of death. They exude a rare kind of calmness, reconciliation and serenity – they are a testament of an entire generation, as well as a personal confession. The beautiful vocal line is often supported by the sound of the horn. Here, a certain symbolism, a reflection on the author’s life seems to be hiding under the surface – the composer’s wife, Pauline de Ahna, was a prominent soprano, and his father a professional horn player. Strauss, the author of great symphonic poems and operas, bid a symbolic farewell to the world in 1948 with this extraordinarily lyrical opus. He wrote these songs in Switzerland, where he had to take refuge after the fall of the German Reich. He was not able to return home to Garmisch-Partenkirchen in Bavaria until the following year, just a few months before his death. One of his contemporaries was Vítězslav Novák, who approached Strauss’s Alpine Symphony in his symphonic poem In the Tatras, but he was also greatly inspired by the folklore from the Moravian-Slovak borderlands. It comes as no surprise that the Slovak Suite is his most played and most typical work.


  • Claude Debussy: Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, 10 min.
  • Richard Strauss: The Four Last Songs, 24 min.
  • Vítězslav Novák: Slovak Suite, 29 min.

The public dress rehearsal will take place on 10 February 2025 at 10:00.


Obecní dům, Náměstí Republiky 5, Prague
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