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UMS Concert Program, November 20, 1922: Extra Concert Series -- The Detroit Symphony Orchestra

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Season: 1922-1923
Concert: SECOND
Complete Series: CCCLXXXII
Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan

F. W. KELSEY, President
Albert Lockwood, Acting Director of the University School of Music Earl V. Moore, Acting Director of the University Choral Union
VICTOR KOLAR. Conducting
RAOUL VIDAS, Violinist, Soloist
Overture, "Le Roi d'Ys"........halo
Siegfried's Rhine Journey, from "Dusk of the Gods," Act I, Scene 1 Wagner Concert Piece for Violin with Orchestra in A major . Saint-Sains
Intermission Prelude to "HaENSEL and GrETei' . . . . . Humperdinck
(a) Allegretto from Second Symphony.....Mahler
(b) Dance of the Nymphs and Satyrs . . . Gcorg Schumann
Slovakian Rhapsody .
(First time in Ann Arbor)
The Mason & Hamlin is the official piano of the Detroit Symphony Society
Overture, "Le Roi d'Ys"...... . Lalo
Edouard Victor Antoine Lalo was born at Lille, France, January 27, 1823; died April 22, 1892, at Paris.
"Le Roi d'Ys" ("The King of Is"), an opera in three acts and five tableaux, text by Edouard Blau, and music by Edouard Lalo, was performed for the first time May 7, 1888, at the Opera Comique, Paris. The overture, with which this evening's program opens, was written some years before the entire work was completed, and follows, in point of years, soon after the "Symphonie Espagnole," which was presented on the recent Elman program.
Lalo gained considerable reputation in both Germany and France, though his dramatic work received but tardy recognition. He was brought to the attention of the Parisian public first as a viola player in the Armingaud-Jacquard quartet; his activity in composition with varying degrees of success brought him in 1880 the fully deserved decoration of the Legion d'Honneur. He contributed to the fields of dramatic music, ballet, and chamber music, and was less indebted to the Conservatoire and its professors than to the direct study of Beethoven, Schubert and Schumann. Lalo excelled in richness and piquancy of orchestration.
The overture begins with a sustained introduction, in which the clarinet has an expressive solo, derived from one of the solos sung by Mylio in the opera. The main body of the overture is reached as the orchestra gathers strength and arrives at a brilliant climax. Other themes from the opera are introduced, mingled and developed, and a suggestion of the introduction leads to a rousing conclusion.
Siegfried's Rhine Journey, from "Dusk of the Gods," Act 1, Scene 1 Wagner Richard Wagner was born at Leipsig, May 22, 1813; died at Venice, Feburary 13, 1883.
Siegfried's Rhine Journey is the interlude in "Die Gotterdamerung" ("Dusk of the Gods") which separates the prelude to the first act of the music drama and the act itself.
Brunnhilde, having taught Siegfried much of her divine wisdom, now urges him forth to do the work of a hero in the world. He gives her the fatal ring as his pledge of fidelity and wanders forth in his journey along the Rhine to the castle of the Gibichungen, Gunther and Gutrune, and Hagen, their half-brother. As he departs, the orchestra commences a long interlude beginning with the Siegfried heroic motive. Brunnhilde gazes long after him from the edge of the height. The sound of Siegfried's horn is heard in the distance. This motive is developed at great length in connection with Loge's fire motive. Gradually the themes connected with Siegfried give place to those descriptive of the Rhine. The beautiful song of the Rhine-maidens (with its brilliant accompaniment) is interrupted by the "Ring" and "Rheingold'' motives. This interlude ends the Vorspiel, and when the curtain rises upon the first act proper the great hall of the Gibichungen is disclosed, with a view of the Rhine at the back.
Concert Piece for Violin with Orchestra in A major . Saint-Saeni
Camille Saint-Saens was born at Paris, October 9, 1835; died in Algiers, December 16, 1921.
The following letter, addressed by Saint Saens to M. Camille Bellaigue in 1892, gives the clue to the master's attitude to the movements in musical expression which were more or less synchronous with his years of creative activity:
"Yes, I am a classicist, nourished on Mozart and Haydn from my tenderest infancy. I wished that it might be possible for me to speak any but a clear and well-balanced language. I do not blame those who do otherwise. Like Victor Hugo, speaking of certain poetic innovations, I find certain procedures good--for others."
"For the concert hall as well as for the stage," remarks Prod'homme, in The Musical Quarterly, in the course of his review of the life and works of Saint-Saens, "the classic forms, or, to be more exact, the traditional forms, the academic forms, augmented by the symphonic poem--which he has defined as an 'ensemble of movements dependent one upon another, flowing from the original idea which they enchain, forming a single composition'-sufficed for him. At any rate, he conforms to their economy of means, their external arrangement; for, from the point of view of tonality, as a rule respected by the classic composers, Saint-Saens permits himself great liberties, profits by an independence almost modern. His thought is invariably clear, limpid, exempt from any too powerful outbreaks of feeling. He was too purely, too exclusively a musician to obtain in a country like France the popularity awarded a Gounod or a Massenet."
The output of the composer of "Samson and Delilah," "Phaeton," "Le Rouet d'Omphale," etc., spreads over a period of eighty years, and when the complete catalog of his compositions is published, it will in all probability comprise more than three hundred and fifty numbers.
Prei,ude to "Haensel and Gretel".....Humperdinck
Engelbert Humperdinck was born at Siegburg, September 1, 1854; died at Neustrelitz, September 28, 1921.
Humperdinck leaped into sudden fame through the production of his fairy opera, "Hansel and Gretel,'' at the Court Theatre in Weimar, in 1893, under the enthusiastic direction of Richard Strauss, who occupied the post of second conductor in that theatre. Within a year the opera had more than five hundred performances to its credit in Germany alone, and the vogue spread rapidly to other countries.
The story of the two children who, driven into the woods, lost their way and were enticed into the clutches of the witch who lived in the house made of gingerbread, was taken from Grimm's Fairy Tales and put into the form of a play by the composer's sister, Adelhied Wette.
A quartet of French horns and the bassoon open the prelude with the theme of the
prayer, which the children sing in the second scene before they lie down to sleep in the wood in which they have lost their way. Without following any prescribed form, several other subjects, all drawn from the scenes of the opera, are woven into a tonal fabric that charms by sheer melodic beauty and color of orchestration.
(a) Allegretto from Second Symphony . . . Mahler
Gustav Mahler was born at Kalischt, Bohemia, July 7, i860; died at Vienna, May 18, 1911.
For the first time, the name of Mahler appears on a symphony program in this community. While the excerpt is from one of the lesser known symphonies, the following brief biography from the pen of Felix Borowski presents some of the salient facts of his life and a statement of his works:
"The date of Mahler's birth, set forth above, is not altogether certain. Paul Stefan (Gustav Mahler, cine Studie iiber Personlichkeit und Werk, Munich, 1910) gives the date as July 7, but the parents of the composer, as he himself has testified, believed that he was born July 1. Mahler's father was a tradesman of comparatively humble station whose ambitions in the pursuit of culture were larger than those possessed by his fellows in the little Bohemian village in which his son was born. Soon after the birth of Gustav, his parents moved to Iglau, a town not far from Kalischt, on the German-Moravian border. There Gustav heard the hymns and songs of the Moravians, half German, half Slavonic. He was only four years old when he picked out this music, and that of the military marches which he heard, on the accordion. He practiced on an old pianoforte belonging to his grandparents, and Mahler's evident passion for music was shared only by his yearning for books. He studied at the Iglau school and for a short time at Prague. When he was about fifteen the boy was taken by his father to Julius Epstein, a pianist and much respected teacher in Vienna, in order to obtain his advice as to the career which Gustav should choose. There was no doubt about the young musician's gifts. Epstein threw the weight of his counsel upon the side of art. In the autumn of 1875 young Mahler entered the Conservatory of Vienna as a student in piano playing of Epstein, in musical theory of Robert Fuchs and of Franz Krenn. Quiet and shy as a child, Mahler's adolescence was less sedate. He gave some trouble to the authorities of the conservatory by reason of his 'rebelliousness,' but his musical progress left little to be desired and he won a prize at the end of his first year for the performance of a movement of a sonata by Schubert, and another for the composition of the first movement of a pianoforte quintet. At the time of his studentship at the Vienna Conservatory, Mahler also entered himself as a student of philosophy and history at the University of Vienna. After leaving the Conservatory, he obtained an engagement to conduct operettas and other musical trifles in a summer theater at Hall, a small place in Upper Austria. In the autumn Mahler returned to Vienna, where he gave lessons and occupied himself with composition. Later he held positions at Laibach,
Olmutz, Cassel and Prague. It was during the period in which he officiated as second conductor at the Cassel Opera that Mahler began the composition of his first symphony. It was at Prague, however, that first he gained the attention of the artistic world. His growing reputation won for Mahler an appointment as conductor at Leipzig, in 1886. He held this post until 1888 and then was called to Budapest. There he made brilliant the performances at the opera, but eventually Mahler had differences with Count Geza Zichy, the Intendant--himself a composer and pianist--and he moved to Hamburg. Mahler's next post was at Vienna, whose opera he ruled as an autocrat. He conducted in the Austrian capital also the concerts of the Philharmonic Society and those of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde. He directed operas in New York in 1907 and for two seasons after that. In 1909 he became conductor of the New York Philharmonic Society. His position there was not altogether a happy one. In 1911 his health failed. Nervousness made his relations with the orchestra and with the directors unpleasant. An affection of the heart finally drove Mahler to Europe in the hope of recovering health and strength, but pneumonia supervened and he died in Vienna in the spring of 1911.
"Mahler composed nine symphonies. The first was begun in 1883-1884; the second was begun at Leipzig and produced under the direction of Richard Strauss at Berlin, March 4, 1895. The third symphony was completed in 1896 and parts of it were brought out at concerts given at Berlin and Hamburg in 1896. The first productoin of the whole symphony was at Krefeld, at a concert of the Allgemeiner Deutscher Musikverein, in June, 1902. The fourth symphony was composed in 1899-1900, and given at Munich in 1904. The fifth was produced at a Giirzenich concert, Cologne, October 18, 1904. At a concert of the Tonkiinstler Fest at Essen, given May 27, 1906, the sixth symphony was brought out, and the seventh was first played at an Austellungs Concert, Prague, September 19, 1908. The eighth symphony was begun in 1906 and produced at Munich, September 12, 1910. A ninth symphony was completed in 1909 and heard for the first time in Vienna in June, 1912."
(b) Dance of the Nymphs and Satyrs . . . Georg Schumann
From "Amor and Psyche," Opus 3
Georg Schumann was born at Koenigstein, October 25, 1866.
The choral work "Amor and Psyche," from which this number is drawn, was produced May 5, 1888, at the Gewandhaus, Leipzig, Georg Schumann having been the director. The performance of the work, which took three hours to unfold itself, was praised by the reviewer for the Musikalisches Wochenblatt, who, however, testified that the orchestral interpretation left something to be desired.
The composition is founded upon the fairy tale "Amor und Psyche," by Dr. Bulhaupt, who, in his turn, had based his work upon the "Golden Ass" of Lucius Apuleius, the most famous portion of which is (the romance of Cupid and Psyche.
The Dance of the Nymphs and Satyrs is scored for two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets,
(wo bassoons, four horns, two trumphets. three trombones, kettledrums, triangle, cymbals and strings. The piece is simply constructed in the three-part form peculiar to many dances. The first part is preceded by an Introduction (Allegro, F major, 6-8 time), of which the material is announced by the violas. Passages for wood-wind and strings alternate, and a pause leads into the theme of the first part, given to the bassoon lightly accompanied by the strings pizzicato. The second part (Moderato) is announced in a dotted figure in E major, played by the full orchestra (triangle and cymbals included) fortissimo. The third part is a slightly modified repetition of the first, and the dance is brought to an end with a short coda (Presto).
Slovakian Rhapsody . . . . . . . . . Kolar
Victor Kolar was born at Budapest, February 12, 1888.
The appended analysis of the work is drawn from the program book of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, on the occasion of the first performance of the Rhapsody in Detroit;
"The Rhapsody lends itself more generously than any other form of instrumental composition to the identification of character. Liszt notably demonstrated that Rhapsody can and to be effective must have structure; a structure as definite and technically correct as any other musical form. One speculates how much the Magyars owe to Liszt for his interpretation to the world of their national soul. Kolar is not a Hungarian, nor even a Bohemian, but a Slovak. Akin to the Czechs, yet separated as the mountaineer is always separated from his kinsfolk of the plain. The line of demarcation may be very slender, but it is there, as this composition proves. Slovak history may emphasize it, but the discovery of Kolar sufficiently pursues Slovakia back into the twilight where dwells ever Russia, half of the Eeast and half of the West, half Asiatic, half European. It is not surprising that Slovakia traces its native melodies to the Orient; it is only surprising that such evidence exists, that it has been captured and for the first time enshrined in serious classical composition.
"Mr. Kolar, examining a collection of folk-songs in the possession of a friend, found a number of Slovakian folk-songs, and among them these two he utilizes in the Rhapsody. He was profoundly impressed and intrigued to discover in them not the familiar Slavic atmosphere but a strain of pure Orientalism, an Orientalism so clearly marked, so unmistakable fhat it admitted of no question. The hearer accustomed to Liszt will not fail to observe the transference from vigorous rhythm to more sensuous opulence. The composition was awarded one of the three prizes at this year's Norfolk Festival, where, under the terms of the award, it was given its initial presentation before an enthusiastic audience.
"The work opens moderato assai with a brief choral prelude. Bassoons and lower strings then announce part of the first folk-song, this passing quickly to clarinets, to horns and to upper strings, with increasing rhythm. What follows throughout is not variation but reconstruction, the composer developing in pure technical form a Rhapsody of lavish
Asiatic splendor. The lovely clarinet passages and the contrasting sequences (Amabile) and the more sonorous phrases (molto lento), with the suggestive interlude of almost cathedral solemnity, the pacing step of the second folk-song being here utilized, and merely the ranging manifestation of development, broadly imaginative and vigorous in expression. Following the Allegro, II doppo piu tnosso, where the folk-song statement (original) appears like a rushing wind, each gust dropping its contribution of melody to the earth, there is a charming duet in the woodwinds, fleet-footed but brilliant, an arching sentence which plunges headlong into the rising mass of color gathering itself together for the climax. ' Long breaths are drawn in for a few rigid measures, and the Rhapsody surges up and over to its ringing finale.
"It is perhaps the most noticeable thing about the Rhapsody that in its passages where abandon seems to press almost beyond control there is a sudden restraint, usually expressed in the woodwinds, a refinement of orchestration it is in the technical sense, which restores .. poise, reclaims the fundamental rhythm and punctuates the structural features of the work.
"Mr. Kolar's First Symphony already has introduced this young composer substantially to Detroit audiences. As assistant conductor his work has won him the praise of a critical public, and especially in the formation and interpretation of popular programs, not only in Detroit but elsewhere, he is happy and successful beyond the ordinary.
"Kolar was a protege of Kubelik at Prague for six years, during two of which he had lessons from Dvorak in composition, and graduated at the Conservatory in 1904. When he came to the United States he was at first soloist with the Chicago Orchestra on a western tour under Rosenbecker. From 1905 he played in the Pittsburgh Orchestra under Paur; in 1907-19, in the New York Symphony Society, becoming assistant conductor in 1915, whence he came to a similar position with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. In 1916 he conducted Casals' first New York concert, and in 1917 directed the Red Cross Pageant at Huntington, L. L, and its New York repetitions. He has published songs, violin pieces and the symphonic suite "Americana," which won the prize offered by the Illinois Music Teachers' Association (1914, New York Symphony Society). He has also written two symphonic poems, "Hiawatha" (1908, Pittsburgh Orchestra) and "A Fairy Tale" (1913, New York Symphony Society) ; a "Lyric" Suite; a Symphony No. 1, in D (1916, New York Symphony Society), and a string quartet in E minor (1917, Flonzaley Quartet)."
MARY GARDEN will appear in the Choral Union Series on TUESDAY, DECEMBER 5, instead of on the date otherwise announced. This change was necessitated by a delay in her return from Europe.
ALFRED CORTOT, PIANIST, will give the third concert in the EXTRA CONCERT SERIES Monday evening, December 4.
THE NEXT FACULTY CONCERT will take place in Hill Auditorium, Sunday, November 26, at 4:15 o'clock. No admission charge.
TWILIGHT ORGAN RECITALS will take place regularly every Wednesday at 4:15 o'clock. They will be omitted on account of conflicts in dates on November 22.
THE UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF MUSIC offers instruction in all branches of music. For catalogue call at office, Maynard Street.
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY is organized' under an Act of the State of Michigan providing for the incorporation of associations not for pecuniary profit. Its purpose is "to cultivate the public taste for music." All fees are placed at the lowest possible point compatible with sound business principles, the financial side serving but as a means to an educational and artistic end, a fact duly recognized by the Treasury Department of the United States by exempting from war tax admissions to concerts given under its auspices, and by the United States Postoffice Department in admitting its publications to second-class privileges.
TRAFFIC REGULATION.--By order of the Police Department, on the nights of Concerts vehicles of all kinds will be prohibited on North University Avenue between Thayer and Ingalls Streets; taxi-cabs must park on the west side of Thayer Street, facing south between North University Avenue and Washington Street; private autos may be parked on Ingalls and Washington Streets. Persons on foot are requested to refrain from leaving from the taxicab entrance at the Thayer Street side of the Auditorium.
LOST ARTICLES should be enquired for at the office of Shirley W. Smith, Secretary of the University, in University Hall, where articles found should be left.

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