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Tone Poem - Thematic Index. Best Classical Tunes.
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   Borodin
       On the Steppes of Central Asia (Borodin) (Tone Poem)

1    First theme, in its first entrance by the clarinets. (On the Steppes of Central Asia)


2    Second theme, on the English horn.

       Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor (Borodin) (Tone Poem)

1    Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor - introductory theme on flutes


2    The first main theme (and most well-known fragment 'Stranger in paradise') is the Gliding Dance of the Maidens, introduced by the oboe, with the harp in the background, then joined by clarinets and bassoons, then taken up by the strings.


3    The second theme is the Wild Dance of the Men, a sort of dervish, with extremely rapid clarinet passages, later joined by oboes and bassoons, then by violins.


4    The third theme is a General Dance, dramatically introduced by the timpani, then tutti. At this point in the opera, a chorus sung praises to the tribe's Glorious Khan.


5    The fourth theme is a slow chromatic tune on the strings, which later acts as a counter-melody to the General Dance.


   Debussy
       L'Après-midi d'une Faune (Debussy) (Tone Poem)

1    Main theme


   Delius
       In a Summer garden, 1st theme B (Delius) (Tone Poem)

1    In a Summer garden, 1st theme B

       La Calinda from Koanga (Delius) (Tone Poem)

1    Main theme


   Dukas
       Sorcerer's Apprentice ( L'Apprenti Sorcier) (Dukas) (Tone Poem)

1    Mystical introduction theme


2    Sorcerer's Apprentice, main comic tune on bassoon.


3    Third theme, lots of activity.


   Fauré
       Pavanne in F# Minor for orchestra Op 50 (Fauré) (Tone Poem)

1    Main theme


   Gershwin
       An American in Paris - 3rd theme (Blues) (Gershwin) (Tone Poem)

1    An American in Paris - 3rd theme (Blues)


   Gomersall
       Floating - for piano and strings (Gomersall) (Tone Poem)

1    piano floating above quiet strings


2    piano gliding around above strings


3    strings join piano, bursting out with a lyrical tune

       Mysteria - Tone Picture for Orchestra. (Gomersall) (Tone Poem)

1    Mysterious introductory theme.


2    Cor Anglais (English Horn) main theme - simple scale passage

       The Blackbird (Tone Poem) (Gomersall) (Tone Poem)

1    The Blackbird (Tone Poem)


   Grieg
       To Spring - from Lyric Pieces Op 43 No.6 (Grieg) (Tone Poem)

1    To Spring - from Lyric Pieces Op 43 No 6


   Ketèlbey
       In a Persian Market (Ketèlbey) (Tone Poem)

1    The camel drivers gradually approach the market


2    The beggars ask for alms, "Back-sheesh, Allah"


3    The beautiful princess arrives at the marketplace


   Mussorgsky
       A Night on Bare Mountain (Mussorgsky) (Tone Poem)

1    An agitated swirling string passage introduces this tone-poem


2    A lugubrious dramatic contrast from the deep brass


3    Woodwinds start a rapid dialogue with the strings


4    The bassoon starts this passage slowly, then accelerates.


5    After a sudden quiet change, the flute plays this plaintif tune.

       Hut with Legs, from Pictures at an Exhibition (Mussorgsky) (Tone Poem)

1    Main theme

       Pictures at an Exhibition - full work. (Mussorgsky) (Tone Poem)

1    Promenade (Intro)


2    The Old Castle


3    Tuileries


4    Bydlo


5    Ballet of Unhatched Chickens


6    Samuel Goldenberg


7    Market Place at Limoges


8    Con mortuis in lingua mortua


9    The hut of Baba Yaga


10    The great gate of Kiev

       The Great Gate of Kiev, from Pictures at an Exhibition (Mussorgsky) (Tone Poem)

1    Main theme


   Ravel
       Bolero (Ravel) (Tone Poem)

1    Bolero, main theme, first on flutes, then clarinets.


2    Second theme, on alto saxophone.


   Respighi
       Fountains of Rome - the Fountain of Valle Giulia at Dawn (Respighi) (Tone Poem)

1    Fountains of Rome - the Fountain of Valle Giulia at Dawn

       Pines of Rome (Respighi) (Tone Poem)

1    Pines of Villa Borghese. The cor anglais plays an old Roman nursery rhyme tune, as children play in this popular Roman park.


2    Pines near a catacomb. Introduced by a quiet trumpet.


3    Pines of the Gianicolo. A pensive clarinet theme.


4    Pines of the Appian Way. Quiet double basses mark the distant approach of Roman soldiers, then as they pass, a gradual brass crescendo is heard.


   Rimsky-Korsakov
       Alborada from Capriccio Espagnol (Rimsky-Korsakov) (Tone Poem)

1    An exuberant full orchestra starts the alborada

       Alborada No.2 from Capriccio Espagnol (Rimsky-Korsakov) (Tone Poem)

1    A new orchestration of the opening alborada

       Fandango AsturiaNo.from Capriccio Espagnol (Rimsky-Korsakov) (Tone Poem)

1    Main theme

       Scena e Canto Gitano.from Capriccio Espagnol (Rimsky-Korsakov) (Tone Poem)

1    First theme of 'Gypsy Song'


2    Second theme

       Variations from Capriccio Espagnol (Rimsky-Korsakov) (Tone Poem)

1    Main tune


   Saint-Saens
       Danse Macabre (Saint-Saens) (Tone Poem)

1    Flutes introduce 'dance of the bones'


2    A solo violin introduces the second theme.


   Sibelius
       Finlandia (Sibelius) (Tone Poem)

1    Dramatic and sombre brass opening theme


2    A contrasting quieter theme on strings and woodwinds.


3    The well-known stirring tune, to which patriotic words have been set in Finland.

       Swan of Tuolena (Sibelius) (Tone Poem)

1    First theme

       Valse Triste from Kuolema Op 44 (Sibelius) (Tone Poem)

1    first main theme, very sad and slow, on strings.


2    Much cheerier second theme, on flute, echoed by the clarinet


3    Third theme on strings


   Smetana
       Vlatava from Ma Vlast (Smetana) (Tone Poem)

1    Vlatava from Ma Vlast


2    This broad melody represents the river flowing majestically toward the sea.


   Strauss-Richard
       Also Sprach Zarathustra - intro theme (Strauss-Richard) (Tone Poem)

1    Also Sprach Zarathustra - intro theme

       Don Juan Op 20 (Strauss-Richard) (Tone Poem)

1    The whole orchestra rushes up to a high climax in the first few seconds.


2    Strings continue the excitement with another dramatic ascending passage


3    Strings introduce this sweet melody.


4    Cellos enter with this theme


5    Oboes quietly play this plaintive tune.


6    The horns strike out this dramatic and memorable tune, the most famous tune in Don Juan,

       Till Eulenspiegels Lustige Streiche (Strauss-Richard) (Tone Poem)

1    Till Eulenspiegels Lustige Streiche starts with a happy, cheeky tune on the strings.


2    This is Till's leitmotif. The horn theme is a lilting melody that reaches a peak,using notes of the natural harmonics of F, then drops to the fundamental.


3    Here the clarinet theme is crafty and wheedling, so Till seems to be puting out his tongue at everyone, after his naughty prank.


   Tchaikovsky
       Capriccio Italien Op 45 (Tchaikovsky) (Tone Poem)

1    first theme


2    second theme


3    third theme


4    fourth theme


   Vaughan-Williams
       Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis (Vaughan-Williams) (Tone Poem)

1    First theme


2    Second theme

       Fantasia on Greensleeves (Vaughan-Williams) (Tone Poem)

1     It starts with a lovely descending flute passage accompanied by the harp


2    Then the full string orchestra comes in with the well-known English folk song "Greensleeves".

       The Lark Ascending (Vaughan-Williams) (Tone Poem)

1    The Lark Ascending

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