Saturday, February 11, 2012

The Fine Prince

Last night's concert at Alice Tully in NYC, it turns out, held a special surprise.  The program (see item below) was comprised of three Beethoven chamber pieces and one from Haydn, featuring the splendid Jupiter Quartet,  in tribute to Prince Lobkowicz, who commissioned so many important LvB creations--such as, oh, the 3rd, 5th and 6th symphonies.  And there in the hall, up in the balcony near the stage, were members of the Lobkowicz family, flown in from Prague for the occasion.  The co-directors of the Chamber Music Society at Lincoln Center, David Finkel and Wu Tan, had decided on this program after a profoundly moving tour of the Lobkowicz castle and museum in Prague, where they met one member of the family (which lost everything to the Nazis, and then the Soviets, then regained some of it).

You might enjoy the following.  It's from the quite good BBC film Eroica, which portrays the famous first rehearsal of the 3rd symphony at a Lobkowicz mansion in Vienna.  The Prince is there, as you will see, along with Ian Hart as Ludwig and the always wonderfully evil Tim Pigott-Smith as a hostile guest.  Hart, who also played John Lennon in a biopic, now co-stars as one of the goofy horse gamblers in the new HBO series Luck.  The entire Eroica film is at YouTube in several segments.

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