Stories Take 5 with Baiba Skride

By Alyssa Porambo

Latvian violinist Baiba Skride joins the BSO this weekend to perform Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto, widely known as one of the most popular violin concertos of all time. Earlier this week, Baiba gave us the Top 5 pieces she’s listening to right now. If you’re in the mood for some Schubert, Brahms or Beethoven, check it out!

Schubert’s Piano Trio No. 2, op. 10
Baiba’s mixed tape begins with one of the last compositions by Franz Schubert (dated 1827). The piece was published in late 1828, shortly before his death. Below is a clip from the Trio’s second movement, which has been used in a variety of ways in contemporary film and TV, including Stanley Kubrick's 1975 British-American period drama Barry Lyndon, The Hunger (1983 British horror film featuring David Bowie) andthe HBO miniseries John Adams.



Brahms’ Piano Quartet, op. 26
The ordering of Johannes Brahms’ Piano Quartet after Schubert’s Piano Trio perhaps alludes to the fact that Brahms drew influence from Schubert for this piece. At 50 minutes, this is the longest of Brahms’ chamber works. Below you’ll find the first movement. 


Schumann’s Symphony No. 4

Robert Schumann’s Symphony No. 4 has a slight air of controversy. It was first completed in 1841 and heavily revised in 1851. After Robert’s death, his widow Clara and Johannes Brahms – who went on to have one of the most mysterious relationships in music history – disagreed about the merits of the later version. Clara preferred the heavier, statelier version, whereas Brahms greatly preferred its earlier version. Brahms published his favorite in 1891, despite Clara's strenuous objections. The revised 1851 version (and Clara’s favorite) is below.


Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 16, op .135

Written in October 1826, this was the last substantial work that Beethoven finished before his death.


Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 2

We’re beginning to see a pattern with Baiba’s selections here: as the final piece on her mixed tape, she’s selected Dimitri Shostakovich’s last known concerto also composed shortly before his death.  Listen to its first movement here.