The ASO on GPB, March 13 & 16

The French festival continues this week on GPB's Atlanta Symphony broadcasts, with a concert recorded in October 2007 at the Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta.

The orchestra performs a symphony Haydn wrote for Paris (No. 83, "The Hen), Chausson's Poem for violin and orchestra, Saint-Saens' Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, and Saint-Saens' "Organ" Symphony. Pinchas Zukerman guest conducts, and the soloist is his former student - 30-year-old German violinist Viviane Hagner.

We'll also hear an excerpt from the eerie story by Ivan Turgenyev, "The Song of Triumphant Love," that inspired Chausson's musical poem. We'll meet ASO principal keyboard player Peter Marshall, who gets to pull out all the stops in the "Organ" Symphony. And we'll hear how Saint-Saens' great finale tune sounds as it shows up in the 1995 farmyard flick Babe - as the song "If I had words" - with a beat, and sung by mice.

(Note: Those crazy mice didn't get there first. For even more of a trip, check out the 1977 version of "If I had words" with British one-hit wonders Scott Fitzgerald and Yvonne Keeley. And, oh yeah, the song was also covered by Hawaiian singer Keali'i Reichel.)

The ASO is on GPB Thursday at 8 p.m. with a rebroadcast Sunday night at 10. Join us!