Three programmes of real interest this weekend

Rob Cowan makes a welcome return to Classic FM this evening to begin his new Saturday evening show: Cowan’s Classics.We look forward to knowing what he has chosen as this week’s Sure Shot and hearing works by his artist of the week, the legendary American soprano Jessye Norman.

You can listen to Cowan’s Classics here.

Also this evening, starting at 6pm, Radio 3 are broadcasting a performance of Rossini’s Semiramide that was recorded at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. This overlooked masterpiece of Rossini’s had not been performed at the Royal Opera House for more than 120 years. The opera tells the dramatic story of the Queen of Assyria, who conspired with her then lover Assur, an army commander, to poison her husband, King Nino, whose corpse comes back from the underworld to claim justice. The performance stars the mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato and is conducted by Sir Antonio Pappano.

Rupert Christiansen, writing in the Daily Telegraph, said “This is a production to change minds and hearts: I’ve previously found Semiramide rather a bore: after this knockout performance, I can’t wait to hear it again.”

© Bill Cooper

Visit this page, shortly after the start of the broadcast, to listen.

On Sunday evening between 7pm and 9pm, David Mellor has his regular slot on Classic FM that is usually well worth listening to. This week his programme is going to focus on the late Sir Georg Solti so at iClassical we are particularly looking forward to this edition.

Listen to David Mellor here.