April 25 Dateline

Famous Birthdays

1599 - Oliver Cromwell, English Lord
1908 - Edward R. Murrow, Journalist
1917 - Ella Fitzgerald, Jazz Singer
1940 - Al Pacino, Actor
1945 - Bjorn Ulvaeus, Singer
1969 - Renee Sellweger, Actress

Broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow

Giacomo Puccini's opera Turandot 

Below is the famous "Nessun dorma" from Turandot most famously interpreted by the late tenor Luciano Pavarotti. YouTube, uploaded by noé èon. Accessed April 25, 2018.

Turandot Links for Listening: 

Puccini: Turandot. Montserrat Caballé - Luciano Pavarotti. Chailly 1977.  YouTube, uploaded by ENCOREPAPAGENO. Accessed April 25, 2017. Artists: Montserrat Caballé. Calaf: Luciano Pavarotti. Liù: Leona Mitchell. Timur: Giorgio Tozzi. L'imperatore: Raymond Manton. Ping: Dale Duesing. Pang: Rémy Corazza. Pong: Joseph Frank. Un Mandarino: Aldo Bramante. Tre Principesse: Pamela South, Carol Vaness, Gwendolyn Jones. Conductor: Riccardo Chailly. San Francisco. November 4, 1977.

Turandot. An Opera by Giacomo Puccini.  The Opera 101. Accessed April 25, 2017.

Historical Events

1859 - The construction of the Suez Canal in Egypt begins. The 101-mile-long (162.5 km) artifical canal allows ship access from the Mediterranean Sea to the Indian Ocean via the Red Sea, rather than having to sail around Africa's Cape of Good Hope.

1881 - Gilbert and Sullivan's operetta Patience is first staged, in London.

April 24 Dateline

Famous Birthdays

1580 - Vincent de Paul, Saint
1815 - Anthony Trollope, Writer
1904 - Willem de Kooning, Painter
1905 - Robert Penn Warren, Poet
1934 - Shirley Maclaine, Actress
1942 - Barbra Streisand, Singer and Actress 
1952 - Jean-Paul Gaultier, Fashion Designer
1960 - Paula Yates, TV Presenter

Fashion Designer Jean-Paul Gaultier
Actress Shirley Maclaine

Featuring Haydn's oratorio The Seasons

♪ Die Jahreszeiten / The Seasons, Hob. XXI:3 (1799-1801) oratorio by Joseph Haydn is in four parts. Text is by Gottfried van Swieten.

Here's a link to a performance in English: Haydn's The Season.  Gabrieli Consort & Players, Wrocław Baroque Orchestra, National Forum of Music Choir, Paul McCreesh.  Soloists:  Carolyn Sampson, soprano. Jeremy Ovenden, tenor.  Andrew Foster-Williams, bass-baritone. (YouTube, Uploaded by E.V. Accessed April 24, 2018)

Below's video is performed in German.
Performing Artists: Hanne - Dorothea Röschmann, soprano. Lukas - Michael Schade, tenor.  Simon -  Floriam Boesch, baritone.  Konzertvereinigung Wiener Staatsopernchor. Ernst Raffelsberger, chorus master. Wiener Philharmoniker, conducted by Nikolaus Harnoncourt.

Historical Events

1184 B.C.E. - Greeks storm the city of Troy by hiding inside the Trojan Horse.

1801 - Joseph Haydn's oratorio The Seasons is first performed in Vienna.

April 23 Dateline

Famous Birthdays

1564 - William Shakespeare, English Poet, Playwright and Actor (It's always a challenge to verify facts about him, but it is believed that on this day, Shakespeare was born, and baptized on the 26th. He died in Stratford on the same day, April 23, in 1616.  He is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language, and world's pre-eminent dramatist.) Resource: W. Shakespeare - Poet

1676 - King Frederick I of Sweden
1775 - William Turner, Ornithologist
1857 - Ruggiero Leoncavallo, Italian Opera Composer (Famous for his opera I Pagliacci)
1891 - Sergei Prokofiev, Soviet Composer, Pianist, Conductor
1928 - Shirley Temple, Actress and Singer
1936 - Roy Orbison, Singer
1939 - Lee Majors, Actor
1955 - Judy Davis, Actress

Composer Sergei Prokofiev

Enjoy a video of S. Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 1, featuring Martha Argerich with Alexandre Ravinovitch conducting. Filmed at the La Roque d'Anthéron festival on July 29th, 2005. (Two other Prokofiev works you might want to listen to: "Classical Symphony" and his famous symphonic fairy tale "Peter and the Wolf.") 

Historical Events

1533 - The Archbishop of Canterbury annuls the marriage of Catherine of Aragon and King Henry VIII. First, he had to pass a law repudiating jurisdiction of the Roman Catholic Church over England.

1942 - Germans begin the Baedeker Raids on England during World War II, beginning with a bomb strike over Exeter in retaliation for the British raid on Lubeck.