Berlioz for Spring

Hector Berlioz’ song cycle, Les nuits d’été, Op. 7  (“Summer Nights”), based on the poetry of Théophile Gautier, dramatizes the progression of love from youthful innocence, to death, to ultimate rebirth. Villanelle, the first of the six songs, evokes the arrival of spring and the joyful exuberance of young love. The text celebrates the abundance of nature, from flowers and berries to the wildlife of the forest.

Berlioz’ song, composed on March 23, 1840, teems with this fresh, carefree energy. The melody is filled with surprising harmonic twists and turns. Listen to the way the instrumental voices of the orchestra spring to life and converse with the vocal line in continuous, weaving counterpoint.

In January, we explored a new release featuring English tenor Ian Bostridge with Ludovic Morlot and the Seattle Symphony. This is another excerpt from that recording:


  • Berlioz, Ravel, and Debussy: Ian Bostridge, Ludovic Morlot, Seattle Symphony Amazon (also available from Acoustic Sounds in a 5.1 digital surround format)

About Timothy Judd

A native of Upstate New York, Timothy Judd has been a member of the Richmond Symphony violin section since 2001. He is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music where he earned the degrees Bachelor of Music and Master of Music, studying with world renowned Ukrainian-American violinist Oleh Krysa.

The son of public school music educators, Timothy Judd began violin lessons at the age of four through Eastman’s Community Education Division. He was a student of Anastasia Jempelis, one of the earliest champions of the Suzuki method in the United States.

A passionate teacher, Mr. Judd has maintained a private violin studio in the Richmond area since 2002 and has been active coaching chamber music and numerous youth orchestra sectionals.

In his free time, Timothy Judd enjoys working out with Richmond’s popular SEAL Team Physical Training program.

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