23 Jan 2018

Eight summer inspired tunes to bask in

From Upbeat, 12:00 pm on 23 January 2018

This summer’s heat cries out for music to relax to even when your break comes to a close.  Get the holiday vibe back with these summer inspired tunes with a classical twist.

1. Vivaldi – Summer from the Four Seasons

Have a nap, or get up and move to this famous work that tells the story of the summer heat, bird song at sunset, and the forces of nature. You can hear this piece in May performed by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

2. Mendelssohn – Wedding March from A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Instantly recognisable, this is the perfect tune for summer and a popular choice for weddings. The regal tune with its bright fanfares is perfect to bring a bit of light back into the occasional grey summer days.

3. Shapeshifter – One

It can’t be a Kiwi summer without drum and bass legends Shapeshifter. They teamed with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra in 2006 to bring orchestral music to a whole new crowd. The entire gig is worth a listen, while soaking up the summer sun.

4. Rimsky-Korsakov – Flight of the Bumblebee

Get inspired to plant some bee-friendly flowers in your garden with this buzzy tune. Arguably one of the hardest pieces to play, Flight of the Bumblebee conjures images of busy bees going about their business. (Maybe it could be used to get inspiration for when you go back to work.)

5. Gershwin - Summertime

Summertime, and the living is easy (except for when you have to go back to work). The song, composed by George Gershwin for the opera that debuted in 1935, was originally performed as a lullaby. It has become one of the most covered tunes in the history of recorded music, with more than 33,000 artists giving it their spin.

6. Glazunov – Summer from The Seasons Op. 67

This stunning piece is the perfect tune to accompany a summer romance. It was composed for the Russian Imperial Ballet by Alexander Glazunov, who was the director of the St Petersburg Conservatory. Snuggle up with a significant other and bask in this piece that depicts flowers waltzing in the breeze.

7. Prokofiev – Concerto for Turntables

Summer is full of music festivals so why not crank out your glow sticks and have a mini-rave to this piece created by Gabriel Prokofiev – grandson of Sergei Prokofiev. DJ plays turntables, accompanied by an entire orchestra, offering classical music with a twist. The second movement (about 6.44 in) will get you going.

8. Verdi – Brindisi (the drinking song) from La traviata

Get in the summer party mood with Verdi’s drinking song from La Traviata. In this lively song a toast is offered and the crowd is encouraged to drink from joyous chalices until they enjoy a brief moment of inebriation. Sounds like a fun party.