Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Antonín Dvořák: Complete Chronological Catalogue

"Perhaps to have composed the Stabat Mater, is rather better, after all, than to understand Latin."  Antonín Dvořák reflects on his stay in Cambridge, where he received an honorary Doctoral degree.

Among composers not specialized in opera, Dvorak is perhaps the finest tunesmith since Schubert. If I were a pop songwriter and found myself in a uninspired mood, I would put on this playlist on shuffle and copy all the catchy themes crowded in even the least known works. I'd have to write so fast that couldn't even find a moment to stop and wonder how did this man turn his head into a fountain of ravishing melodies.

Dvorak's pieces were not published in the order he wrote them, and his publisher gave his works opus numbers corresponding to publishing date. This playlist was compiled after an authoritative chronological catalog of his œuvre, sorted by Burghauser number. The only addition is an arrangement of the A major Piano Quintet recorded by Windscape and Jeremy Denk. All tracks except for a few early works are available on Spotify USA.

Here's the Spotify playlist: Antonín Dvořák: Complete Chronological Catalogue (680 tracks, total time: 2 days) Ctrl (CMD)+G to browse in album view. Also check out the excellent Naxos Educational audiobooks, Life And Works: Dvorak and Classisc Explained: New World Symphony.