Essential Classics Weekend: Celebrate Labor Day With Beethoven, Mozart And More

Photo collage: CPR/Brad Turner
Bach, Mozart, Beethoven and Brahms will all be there!
Image: Essential Classics 2016 Labor Day collage
Bach, Mozart, Beethoven and Brahms will all be there!

Labor Day Weekend is a time to savor the final days of summer -- and a great time to relax and enjoy some amazing music. This year, CPR Classical is ready to provide the soundtrack all weekend long.

Starting at 2 p.m. Thursday, listen for your favorite masterworks by some of the greatest composers who ever lived. The party kicks off with Modest Mussorgsky's "Night on Bald Mountain." The playlist includes classics from Bach, Mozart and Beethoven; American masters like Aaron Copland and George Gershwin; and modern standouts like Jennifer Higdon and Caroline Shaw.

Scroll down for a taste of what you can expect this weekend. For more Labor Day listening options, try one of our podcasts. Explore the music of Mozart and Leonard Bernstein in our Great Composers podcast and check out new episodes of Centennial Sounds, featuring Colorado performances of music by 21st-century composers.

Thursday highlights:

  • Bach: Brandenburg Concerto No. 2
  • Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 5, "Emperor"
  • Prokofiev: Symphony No. 1, "Classical"

Friday highlights:

  • Rossini: Overture From "The Barber of Seville"
  • Ravel: "Mother Goose" Suite
  • Mozart: Symphony No. 25
  • Aaron Copland: "Rodeo"
  • Handel: Music for the Royal Fireworks

Saturday highlights:

  • Rachmaninoff: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini
  • Britten: Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra
  • Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue
  • Higdon: Concerto For Orchestra
  • Mozart: Symphony No. 40
  • Shaw: Entr'acte

Sunday highlights:

  • Pachelbel: Canon & Gigue
  • Vivaldi: Gloria
  • Beethoven: Symphony No. 5
  • Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 2
  • Dvorak: String Quartet No. 2, "American"
  • Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto

Monday highlights include:

  • Elgar: Salut d'Amour
  • Camille Saint-Saens: Carnival of the Animals
  • Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 4, "Italian"
  • Mozart: Eine Kleine Nachtmusik
  • Schubert: Symphony No. 5
  • Tchaikovsky: 1812 Overture