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UMS Concert Program, May 6, 7, 8, And 9, 1942: The Forty-ninth Annual May Festival -- Glenn D. Mcgeoch

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Concert: SIXTH
Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Official Program of the Forty-ninth Annual
May 6, 7, 8, and g, IQ42 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Published by The University Musical Society, Ann Arbor
Charles A. Sink, M.Ed., LL.D.........President
Alexander G. Ruthven, Ph.D., Sc.D., LL.D. . Vice-President
Oscar A. Eberbach, A.B...........Treasurer
Shirley W. Smith, A.M. . . . Assistant Secretary-Treasurer Thor Johnson, M.Mus...........Conductor
Junius E. Beal, A.B.
Roscoe O. Bonisteel, LL.B.
Harley A. Haynes, M.D.
James Inglis
Horace G. Prettyman, A.B.
E. Blythe Stason, A.B., B.S., J.D.
Henry F. Vaughan, M.S., Dr.P.H.
Durand W. Springer, B.S., A.M., LL.D., Secretary David Mattern Hardin Van Deursen
The University Musical Society is a nonprofit corporation devoted solely to educational purposes in the field of music. During its entire existence the Society has maintained its concert activities through the sale of tickets of admission. The price, at all times, has been kept as low as possible, just enough to cover the expenses of production and administration. Obviously, the problem is becoming increasingly difficult. The Society has confidence that there are among its patrons and friends those who would like to contribute to an endowment fund, for the purpose of ensuring continuance, particularly during lean years, of the high quality of the concerts. Any contributions so received will be invested, and the income will be utilized by the Board of Directors in maintaining the ideals and purposes of the Society by securing the services of the best possible artists and concerts for Society programs.
Thor Johnson, Festival and Choral Conductor Eugene Ormandy, Orchestral Conductor Saul Caston, Associate Orchestral Conductor Juva Higbee, Youth Chorus Conductor
Sopranos Helen Traubel Judith Hellwig
Contraltos Marian Anderson Enid Szantho
Tenors Jan Peerce Felix Knight
Baritone Mack Harrell
Narrator Rabbi Barnett R. Brickner
Violinist Carroll Glenn
Violoncellist Emanuel Feuermann
Pianist Sergei Rachmaninoff
The Philadelphia Orchestra The University Choral Union The Festival Youth Chorus
Notices and Acknowledgments
All concerts will begin on time (Eastern wartime).
Our patrons are invited to inspect the Stearns Collection of Musical Instruments in the foyer of the first balcony and the adjoining room.
To study the evolution of musical instruments, it is only necessary to view the cases in their numerical order and remember that in the wall cases the sequence runs from right to left and from top to bottom, while the standard cases should always be approached on the left-hand side. Descriptive lists are attached to each case.
The University Musical Society desires to express appreciation to Thor Johnson and the members of the Choral Union for their effective services; to Miss Juva Higbee, and to her able associates for their valuable services in preparation of the Festival Youth Chorus; to the several members of the staff for their efficient assistance and to the teachers in the various schools from which the children have been drawn, for their co-operation.
The writer of the analyses hereby expresses his deep obligation to Miss Dorothy Eckert for her aid in collecting materials and to the late Mr. Lawrence Gilman, whose scholarly analyses, given in the program books of the New York Philharmonic and Philadelphia Orchestras, are authoritative contributions to contemporary criticism. In some instances Mr. Gilman's analyses have been quoted in this Libretto.
The Steinway is the official concert piano of the University Musical Society and of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Wednesday Evening, May 6, at 8130
Soloist: Marian Anderson, Contralto
The Philadelphia Orchestra EUGENE Ormandy, Conductor
PROGRAM Overture in D minor..........Handel-Ormandy
Aria: "II Lamento d'Arianna" from "Arianna" .... Monteverdi
Marian Anderson
"Classical" Symphony in D major, Op. 25.......Prokofiev
Gavotte--non troppo allegro Finale--molto vivace
"San Juan Capistrano" Nocturnes.......Harl McDonald
The Mission Fiesta
Pauline's Air from "Pique-Dame"........Tchaikovsky
"Pleurez mes yeux" from "Le Cid".........Massenet
Miss Anderson
Orchestral Fragments from the Ballet, "Daphnis et Chloe"
(Second Suite)...............Ravel
Daybreak Pantomime General Dance
Waltzes from "Der Rosenkavalier"..........Strauss
Thursday Evening, May 7, at 8:3O
Judith Hellwig, Sop-ano Felix Knight, Tenor
Enid Szantho, Contralto Emanuel Feuermann, Violoncellist
Rabbi Barnett R. Brickner, Narrator Palmer Christian, Organist
University Choral Union
The Philadelphia Orchestra
Thor Johnson, Conductor
"King David," A Symphonic Psalm in Three Parts,
after a Drama by Rene Morax.........Honegger
Soloists, Narrator, Chorus, and Orchestra
Concerto in B minor for Violoncello and Orchestra, Op. 104 . . Dvorak
Adagio ma non troppo
Finale: Allegro moderate
Emanuel Feuermann
Friday Afternoon, May 8, at 2:30
Soloist: Carroll Glenn, Violinist
Festival Youth Chorus
The Philadelphia Orchestra
Saul Caston and Juva Higbee, Conductors
Overture to "Russian and Ludmilla"
Cantata for Children: "The Walrus and the Carpenter" .
Festival Youth Chorus
. . . Glinka Fletcher
"Romeo and Juliet": Overture-Fantasy (after Shakespeare) . Tchaikovsky
Concerto in D major for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 35
Allegro moderate) Canzonetta
Allegro vivacissimo
Carroll Glenn Polovetzian Dances from "Prince Igor" . .
Friday Evening, May 8, at 8:30
Soloist: Helen Traubel, Sop-ano
The Philadelphia Orchestra Eugene Ormandy, Conductor
Overture to "Tannhauser" .
Schmerzen Traume
Elsa's Traume from "Lohengrin"
Helen Traubel
Prelude and Love Death from "Tristan and Isolde"
Excerpts from "Gotterdammerung" Siegfried's Rhine Journey Siegfried's Funeral March Briinnhilde's Immolation and ClosingScene
(Brunnhilde--Miss Traubel) [8]
Saturday Afternoon, May 9, at 2:30
Soloist: Sergei Rachmaninoff, Pianist
The Philadelphia Orchestra Eugene Ormandy, Conductor
"The Isle of the Dead," Symphonic Poem, after Bocklin, Op. 29
Symphonic Dances, Op. 45
Non allegro
Andante con moto (Tempi di valse) Lento assai; Allegro vivace
Concerto for Piano No. 2, in C minor, Op. 18
Adagio sostenuto
Allegro scherzando
Sergei Rachmaninoff
The fiano used is a Steinviay.
Saturday Evening, May 9, at 8130
Judith Hellwig, Soprano Enid Szantho, Contralto
Jan Peerce, Tenor Mack Harrell, Baritone
University Choral Union
The Philadelphia Orchestra
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor
Toccata, Intermezzo, and Fugue in C major .... Bach--Ormandy
Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125.......Beethoven
Allegro ma non troppo, un poco maestoso Molto vivace; Presto
Adagio molto e cantabile; Andante moderato Allegro assai
Soloists, Chorus, and Orchestra
Wednesday Evening May, 6
Overture in D minor........... . Handel
(Transcribed by Eugene Ormandy)
George Friedrich Handel was born at Halle, February 23, 1685; he died in London, April 14, 1759.
From the beginning of his career, Handel was a composer for the people. No doubt this was due to the cosmopolitan training he received in Germany, Italy, and England, and to the fact that he chose opera as his medium, which in the eighteenth century was the most popular and spectacular form of musical entertainment. But there was also something inherent in his music that could account for the position he gained in the hearts of the public of his day; his expression was direct and simple, with no ostentatious display for its own sake. His music had little of the introspective quality that was characteristic of his greater but less popular contemporary, Bach, and it was this nonsubjective quality that made his style irresistible in its appeal to the masses.
Before Handel's day, the overture was nothing more than a mere attentioncatcher to silence the babble of the audience before the curtain rose on an opera or before the performance of an oratorio. In Handel's day, however, although it was still quite unrelated dramatically or thematically to the ensuing work, the overture had acquired an important position musically, often being performed as an independent movement. The slow evolution from this sort of an introduction to the great preludes of Wagner's music dramas is the story of the developing resources of the orchestra as an independent medium of expression.
There were two types of overtures popular in Handel's day, one based upon the Italian model of Alessandro Scarlatti with its lively beginning and ending separated by a slow section, and that which came from France, established by Jean Baptiste Lully with its stately and dignified slow beginning and ending, enclosing a lively fugal section. The French overture type was most frequently employed by Handel and Bach.
The overture on tonight's program is typical, with its opening slow movement based upon a triplet figure preceding an extended allegro in fugal style and followed by a return to the broad and solemn style of the first section. This movement originally prefaced the fifth of a set of six Concerti Grossi which were published by Handel between 1729 and 1734, although they had been written some time before.
Mr. Ormandy's transcription, which employs the full resources of the modern orchestra, retains the Handelian style and is done with the utmost respect for the original.
"II Lamento d'Arianna" from "Arianna" ..... Monteverdi
Monteverdi was born in Cremona in May, 1567; he died in Venice, November 29, 1643.
Claudio Monteverdi was one of the great formative geniuses of music history. He appeared at a time when, under the emasculating influence of the literary coterie in Florence, music was in mortal danger of desiccation. The chief intention of this group was to revive Greek drama. In practical realization, this intention, thoroughly Renaissance in spirit, resulted in the creation of a new art form--the opera, a combination of poetry, music, stage decoration, and architecture. The function of music, in such a combination, was fundamentally altered. Under the "tyranny of the word," it gave up its independence as an individual art, and became the handmaiden of poetry.f Declamation usurped the place of free-moving melody, a dull monodic vocal line over simple chordal instrumental accompaniment took the place of the plural melody style which had developed from the ninth century into a magnificently expressive medium. Just at a time when there seemed to be a complete negation of the art of music, Monteverdi appeared and gave wings to its evolution by developing an extremely
This coterie, during the last years of the sixteenth century, had experimented along the same lines as the French Pleiad group (DuBellay and Ronsard). Its aims were essentially literary. Numbered among its members were the nobleman Count Bardi; the poet Rinucinni, who wrote the first opera libretto; the composers Peri and Caccini, who together wrote the first opera, "Euridice" (1600); and Galilei (father of the astronomer).
f In Peri's preface to "Euridice" is found a complete statement of the relationship between the two arts . . . "wherefore, seeing that I had to do with dramatic poetry, and must accordingly seek, in my music, to imitate one who speaks ... I abandoned every style of vocal writing known hitherto, and gave myself up wholly to contriving the sort of imitation of speech demanded by the poem."
sensitive melody, by discovering in discord the source of infinite expressiveness, and by creating instrumental combinations full of rich and varied tonal colors.
Monteverdi wrote his great operas for the court of the Gonzagas in the city of Mantua, where he was employed. His first opera, "Orfeo" (1607) is a recognized masterpiece. We know the opera "Arianna," however, only from an extended recitative, "II Lamento d'Arianna,"--its one surviving fragment. The complete work was first performed at Mantua, May 28, 1608, in celebration of the marriage of Franscesco Gonzaga and Marguerite of Savoy. Everyone who heard it was deeply affected, especially by the lament; and the ladies were moved to tears, according to a contemporary account by Federico Follino.
The fate of "Arianna" depended upon the whim of a patron. For some unknown reason, the Duke of Mantua did not see fit to publish the score; "Arianna" therefore remained in manuscript. The lament, however, did appear in print. There is a common error today concerning the nature of its original form. It is supposed to have consisted of some twenty bars only, and to have been continuous. It was, in fact, very extended in length, and considerably interrupted.
The story is familiar. Arianna has assisted Theseus to kill the minotaur and to find his way out of the Cretan labyrinth. In return, he makes her his bride and carries her home to Attica. On the way they stop at Naxos, where he deserts her. Her grief, however, is turned to joy by the unexpected arrival of Dionysius. She becomes his wife and joins the gods above.
It is in Scene VI that Arianna laments her husband's unfaithfulness. She is not alone. The recipient of her confidences is Dorilla, her hostess at Naxos. There is also a chorus of fishermen, who, in the manner of the Greek chorus, interject philosophical reflections. The aria is sung tonight in its shortened and uninterrupted form.
Arianna: Let me die! Let me die! And how can you believe that I shall be comforted in my hard fate, in my great suffering Let me die!
The complete lament was printed by Emil Vogel in the Vierteljahrsschrift filr MusikvAssenschaft (1887), but this seems to have been overlooked by scholars. Grove makes no.mention of it. In Winterfeld's Johannes Gabrieli und sein Zeitalter (1834.) and in Gevaert's Gloires d'ltalle (1868), early collections, only the shortened version appears. Parry in the Oxford History of Music (1902), recognized the existence of only the short version. In the new edition of Parry's volume (1938), there is a note in the appendix merely stating that a "great deal more of the lament has been found."
"Classical" Symphony in D major,
Op. 25........Serge Sergievich Prokofiev
Prokofiev was born in Sontsovka, Russia, April 24, 1891.
Serge Prokofiev, a senior member of a very significant group of young Soviet Republic composers, of whom Dimitri Shostakovitch is perhaps the most sensational and promising member, has, after a few early startling excursions into the grotesque, and only an occasional sojourn into the cacophonous realm of musical modernism, produced music that is not merely interesting and clever, but brilliantly effective.
At a period when European audiences either were being doped into a state of insensibility by the vacuity of the post-impressionists, or incensed to riots by the shocking barbarism of Stravinski, or baffled into boredom by the mathematical cerebrations of Schonberg, whose music seemed, as far as emotional expression was concerned, to be hermetically sealed, the spectacle of a composer who was still able to create music that had a natural ease and fluidity, a freshness and spontaneity that was essentially "classical," was as surprising as it was eventful.
It was not without a provoking wit, and just a little satire, perhaps, that Prokofiev ever so politely thumbed his nose at the young radical "moderns" for a moment, and with his tongue in his cheek deluded the staid traditionalists by creating the impression that the "good old classicism" of the past was as alive as ever. The "Classical" Symphony, produced in 1917, has all the polished craftsmanship and mannered elegance of a true eighteenth century composition.
Employing an orchestra typical of Haydn and Mozart's day,f and adhering religiously to the formal symphonic traditions of their time, Prokofiev has almost outdone his models in charm, elegance, and nice proportion. Throughout the work, however, there are, here and there, sly intrusions of daring harmonic progressions, and pointed misshaping of phrases that would certainly have taken the curl out of the periwigs of an eighteenth century audience. But these moments provide delightful zest and engaging interest, and no little humor, to those who know well their classic composers.
Mr. A. H. Meyer, commenting upon the first performance of the work by the Boston Symphony Orchestra, wrote:
The entire Symphony is built upon the principles of pure classicism at its zenith. Prokofieff had a fancy that he would like to write a symphony in the style of the
?Prokofiev wrote the now popular "Peter and the Wolf" in 1936. His most recent work is an orchestral suite derived from his music for the film "Alexander Nevsky."
f The symphony is scored for two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons, two horns, two trumpets, tympani, and strings.
supreme classicist, Mozart. Highly seasoned, modernist pieces, came from Prokofieff before and after; the Symphony stands by itself.
To call the symphony "Mozartean" (with due reservations, naturally!) is to characterize it. ... Its formal schemes are those of the classicists at maturity before the romanticism of Beethoven had begun to modify them.
The first movement, Allegro, is based on the conventional sonata-form: a first theme, a transition, a second. All three are in the light, elegant style which justifies the appelation "Mozartean." Staccati and neatly clipped motives and phrases abound. They offer not much suggestion of what the present era calls modern harmony. Not a single one of the three themes is melodic in the lyric sense. A perfectly regular development, recapitulation, coda, round out the movement.
The second movement, Larghetto, presents much the same type of theme. The form is that of a simple rondo--three appearances of the theme with intervening episodes.
For third movement, instead of the Minuet which Mozart would surely have included, stands a Gavotte, rhythmed according to the best eighteenth-century models. In descending consecutive fifths, mildly chromatic, the main theme moves. A trio, more exactly rhythmed than the conventional Musette, offers contrast.
In the Finale the main theme with its arpeggiated staccati is as Mozartean as any in the whole work. A contrasting theme offers simple repetition of a single note in an upper voice, while there is elementary shifting between dominant and tonic harmony underneath--a characteristic device of Mozart. After the manner of a highly developed Rondo, the main theme is repeated, there is development, recapitulation, coda.
"San Juan Capistrano" Nocturnes .... Harl McDonald
The Mission Fiesta
Harl McDonald was born near
Boulder, Colorado, in 1899.
Harl McDonald spent his youth on his father's cattle ranch, moving later to Southern California. He received his first musical training from his mother, and at the age of four began to study piano. A year or two later he was given his first lessons in dictation and harmony. By the age of seven he had learned to play a number of instruments and had made his first attempt at composition.
Since then his career has been varied in the extreme. After further study in Germany, he became known as an organist, choirmaster, piano recitalist, accompanist for several vocalists and violinists, and teacher of composition in
several schools. From 1930--33, he did outstanding research work under a Rockefeller grant, collaborating with two electrical engineers and a physicist in the field of the measurement of instrumental and voice tone, new scale divisions and resultant harmonies, and in the recording and transmission of tone.
At present Mr. McDonald is a lecturer on composition and conductor of the choral organizations of the University of Pennsylvania.
Mr. McDonald has supplied the following program notes:
My two nocturnes, "San Juan Capistrano" were composed in the latter part of 1938. In subject they reflect two scenes in the little Mission community of Capistrano which lies near the Mexican Border in California. For nearly three hundred years the Mission has dominated the life of the town, and with the exception of an occasional passing automobile, life there goes on in much the same fashion as in past centuries.
The first nocturne, "The Mission", opens in a quiet vein suggesting the tranquility of early evening. Occasionally, the soft music of the strings is punctuated by the sound of mission bells. Faintly, from a distant procession, comes the strain of a 17th century ecclesiastical melody and gradually the chanting and clangor of the bells engulf the scene. As the procession disappears in the mission the subdued and languorous music of the opening passages is heard again.
The second nocturne, "Fiesta", pictures the community baile or danza which is held in the mission-square. The movement opens with a fast Spanish-Colonial "Jota," in 6-8--3-4 rhythm there is an abrupt climax and the music then pictures the ever popular danza-dueto in Habanera tempo. A return of the "Jota" music brings the piece to a close fortissimo.
Pauline's Air from "Pique-Dame"......Tchaikovsky
Tchaikovsky wrote, in all, eight operas, and of these only two are known today, "Eugene Onegin" and "Pique-Dame." He seemed to have a fatal propensity for plunging into opera texts with fervor and excitement, but the essentially lyrical nature of his art did not permit him either to sustain enough interest throughout, or to achieve the necessary intensity and breadth of expression that his rather melodramatic texts demanded. In spite of his inherent limitation to write really great opera, his attempts do not fail to exert a peculiar charm, or to cast a unique kind of spell over the listener.
"Pique-Dame" was finished in the spring of 1890. Its libretto was written by the composer's brother, Modeste, and was based upon Pushkin's novel by the same name.
?Performed in concert form at the May Festival of 1941. [18]
The aria on tonight's program is sung by Pauline, a minor character in the story; in it she recalls, in grief, the scenes of her childhood.
My tender playmates, sweet companions,
Now hasten to the woodlands
To wind your garlands
And to dance your roundelay.
For I too in days gone by
Did take the joys of Arcady
At early dawn of day
I trod the meadows green
And drank delight of maiden rapture,
But what did life decree,
What fate to me was offered
Those youthful dreams of joy,
What promise did fulfill
And what for me ordained
Departure, departure, the end of life.
Aria: "Pleurez, mes yeux" from "Le Cid".....Massenet
Jules Massenet was born May 12, 1842, at Mondand; he died August 13, 1912, at Paris.
Massenet's facile and melodious style was evident in his earliest works, and remained without much development through his long career, the chief source of his popularity. This gift he applied with consummate tact so as to win and retain popular interest. Although his genius did not rise to exalted heights, or exhibit any marked vitality or profound inspiration, in points of technical presentation, instrumentation, fine workmanship, and versatility of subject, he won a secure place in the world of music.
His opera "Le Cid" was based by its librettists, d'Ennery, Blan, and Gallet, partly on the drama by Corneille, and partly on situations of their own invention.
"Pleurez, mes yeux" is sung by Chimene in the third act as she sits alone in her chamber at night, mourning for her father who has been slain by the hand of her lover.
The text in free translation and condensation follows:
The strife is ended, and I turn, broken in spirit, to my lonely grief. Weep, my eyes, and flow, sad tears. If there is any hope left to me, it is for death.
Orchestral Fragments from the Ballet, "Daphnis
et Chloe" (Second Suite)......Maurice Ravel
Maurice Ravel was born at Ciboure, Basses-Pyrenees, March. 7, 1875; he died in Paris, December 28, 1937.
The term "impressionism" passed from a general term to a specialized usage about 1863, when a sunset by Monet was shown in Paris at the Salon des Refuses, entitled "Impression." The name was then adopted for a whole group of painters, of which Monet, Manet, and Degas were the leaders, and later by a similar group of composers, of whom Debussy was the most important figure, and Maurice Ravel, a more recent member. Impressionism came to reject all traditions and devote itself to the sensuous side of art to the exclusion of the intellectual. It subordinated the subject for the most part to the interest of the execution, and it interpreted isolated momentary sensations, not thoughts or concrete things. In the words of Walter Pater, impressionism is "a vivid personal impression of a fugitive effect." Debussy used his art as a plastic medium for recording such fleeting impressions and fugitive glimpses. His style and technique, like that of Monet and Renoir, and early Pissarro, rendered a music that was intimate though evasive, a music with a twilight beauty and glamor, revealing a world of sense, flavor, color, and mystery. And so Debussy, working to the same end as the French impressionists in art, through the subtle and ephemeral medium of sound created an evasive world of vague feelings and subtle emotions--a world of old brocades, the glimmer of moonlight, morning mists, shadowy pools, sunlight on waves,"faint odor of dying flowers, the flickering effect of inverted images in a pool or the more vigorous and sparkling effects of an Iberian fete day.
In contrast to the ecstatic impressionism of Debussy, which fails to merge emotion into an objective lyricism, but merely allows it to spread and dissolve into vague colored patterns, the art of Maurice Ravel appears more concrete. Although he was at home among the colored vapors of the Debussyan harmonic system, Ravel expressed himself in a more tangible form and fashioned the same materials into set designs. His art, in this connection, stands in much the same relationship to musical impressionism as the art of Renoir does to the same style in painting; it restores formal values. In this structural sense lies the true secret of his dissimilarity from Debussy. But, like Debussy, he reveals the typical French genius and exquisite refinement, unerring sense of form, purest craftsmanship, attention to minute details, impeccable taste, and a finesse and lucidity in execution.
The ballet, "Daphnis et Chloe" was composed for the Russian Ballet in 1910 or 1911, at the request of Serge de Diaghilev. It was first performed in June, 1912, at Paris, with Nijinsky as Daphnis and Monteux conducting.
In the score is to be found the following descriptive note:
No sound but the murmur of rivulets fed by the dew that trickles from the rocks. Daphnis lies stretched before the grotto of the nymphs. Little by little the day dawns. The songs of birds are heard. Afar off a shepherd leads his flock. Another shepherd crosses the back of the stage. Herdsmen enter, seeking Daphnis and Chloe. They find Daphnis and awaken him. In anguish he looks about for Chloe. She at last appears encircled by shepherdesses. The two rush into each other's arms. Daphnis observes Chloe's crown. His dream was a prophetic vision; the intervention of Pan is manifest. The old shepherd Lammon explains that Pan saved Chloe, in remembrance of the nymph Syrinx, whom the god loved.
Daphnis and Chloe mime the story of Pan and Syrinx. Chloe impersonates the young nymph wandering over the meadow. Daphnis, as Pan, appears and declares his love for her. The nymph repulses him; the god becomes more insistent. She disappears among the reeds. In desperation he plucks some stalks, fashions a flute, and on it plays a melancholy tune. Chloe comes out and imitates by her dance the accents of the flute.
The dance grows more and more animated. In mad whirlings, Chloe falls into the arms of Daphnis. Before the altar of the nymphs he swears his fidelity. Young girls enter; they are dressed as Bacchantes and shake their tambourines. Daphnis and Chloe embrace tenderly. A group of young men comes on the stage.
Joyous tumult. A general dance.
Waltzes from "Der Rosenkavalier" .... Richard Strauss
Richard Strauss was born June 11, 1864, in Munich; he is now living in Vienna.
"If it's Richard, we'll take Wagner; if it's Strauss, we'll take Johann," wrote a Berlin critic after hearing the first performance of "Der Rosenkavalier" in 1911. But that is not the critical opinion of today, which might run something like this: "If it has to be Richard Strauss at all, we'll take 'Der Rosenkavalier.' "
Certainly no other of his opera scores has endeared him to so large a public, for no other abounds in such geniality, tenderness, and charm. Nor are there many of his pages that reveal such a wealth of mellifluous and engaging melody or such opulent, and at the same time, transparent orchestration.
To a public shocked and antagonized by the consuming lust and appalling realism of "Salome" or by the repellent decadence and crushing dissonance of "Electra," the warm humanity and gentility of this comedy of manners with
its engaging intrigue and its appealing blend of wit and pathos, buffoonery and nostalgic charm came as a great relief and restored to the late Victorians their faith in decency and good taste.
"Der Rosenkavalier" is a comedy of eighteenth century Vienna, written by Von Hofmansthal. It tells the story of a charming woman's reconciliation to her advancing years, and her noble renunciation of a love that has turned from her to a younger woman. The story, relieved by scenes of humor that verge on the bawdy, is so permeated with the spirit of human understanding, humility, and wisdom, that it never fails to leave the spectator with a renewed faith in the goodness in living.
The waltzes occur throughout the opera, particularly at the end of Act II, and are mostly associated with the capers of the fat and lecherous, but impoverished Baron von Lerchenan as he dances around the room, delighted with the outcome of his immediate amorous plans.
Thursday Evening, May 7
"King David," a Symphonic Psalm, in Three Parts,
after a Drama by Rene Morax ......Honegger
For Soprano, Alto, Tenor Soli, Narrator, Chorus, Orchestra, Organ, and Piano
Arthur Honegger was born March 10, 1892, at Havre.
Honegger's rise to world fame has been meteoric. With his elder contemporaries Ravel, Schonberg, Stravinski, de Falla, and Prokofiev, he now stands among the few most representative musicians of a new era as one of the important and arresting musicians of the day. This exalted position and world-wide recognition came to Honegger largely through the creation of his "King David." In the course of a few months it brought the name of its creator to the attention of the whole musical world. The work is one of astonishing daring, both in the sweep of its conception and in its convincingly eloquent realization. It is music of epic quality, conceived on a massive scale, sometimes chiseled with meticulous care, and sometimes hewn with careless sweep, but always displaying abundance, vitality, and impetuous inspiration. The written text is treated with respect, and the expressive and musical values of the words are taken into account constantly. Precision of accent, suppleness and vigor, simplicity and nobility, and evocative power lie in the score. It is essentially robust, direct, and healthy music; and these qualities were largely responsible for its almost instantaneous success. In his book Panorama de la Musique Contemforaine, Andre Coeurroy said that the success of "King David" was in a way psychological. "It appeared at a moment," he writes, "when one was surfeited with an access of airy trifles, of stillborn improvisations. ... It was the hurricane which swept away the dust."
The work is certainly a reflection of the changing norms of artistic expression in music. The tempo and pace of the past three decades of the twentieth century have left their impression on most of the traditional art forms. Poetry, drama, architecture, painting, and sculpture and the dance have undergone changes in subject matter as well as manner of expression. Directness of approach to the essence of idea, boldness of statement, omission of details that are merely decorative, condensation and concentration of expression--these are some of the characteristics of artistic technical procedure in this century in the fields of the fine arts and music.
"King David" has been heard at two previous May Festivals, in 1930 and 1935.
The score is not perfect. It suffers from a lack of unity of style, and differs from the usual treatment of the oratorio in the extreme brevity of the choruses. Except for the "Dance before the Ark," the choral psalms take from one to four minutes each. The modernity of "King David" is at once apparent when one contrasts this concision of choral writing with the expansive and extensive development of thematic materials found in the polyphonic choruses of Bach and Handel.
The work is eclectic in nature, however. The classicism of Bach joins hands with the charm of Ravel and Debussy, and with the accents of savagery in Stravinski. The Introduction, "The Canticle of the Shepherd David" is of archaic beauty. The opening psalm "All praise to Him, Lord of Glory" is almost Handelian in its simplicity and directness of appeal; it is a triumph of contrapuntal suppleness, showing no artificially determined mannerisms. "God the Lord shall be my Light" is a model of pure harmonic writing where chords interlink with the suave audacity one finds in Debussy. In the processionals and fanfares, there is a decided flavor of Stravinski's "Sacre du Printemps." In such portions describing crowds, Honegger has made successful use of themes that keep their tonal independence (polytonality). He thus creates not only a rare mixture of colors, but a new aural architecture revealing clear planes, distance, and perspective, which gives a third dimensional feeling to the orchestral picture.
In spite of its eclectic nature, and lack of style unification, this striking and exceptionally plastic work is one of the few acknowledged master works of contemporary music.
On the following page is a translation in English of the French text of "King David" made by Edward Agate.
And in those days the Lord spoke to the people of Israel through the mouth of the prophet. And God turned against Saul and spoke to Samuel, saying: Arise, fill thine horn with oil, and go; I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons. And Samuel arose, and went to Bethlehem, where David was tending his flocks and singing in the fields.
{Contralto Solo)
God shall be my shepherd kind; He will shield me from the wind, Lead His lamb to pastures cool, Guide me to the quiet pool. He shall be my staff and rod,
Restore my spirit again; E'en the darkest vale I trod
Shall not be traveled in pain. He will keep me from alarm,
Though the lightning play around; Save me with His mighty arm, The while, shelter me from harm;
Comfort I have found.
The Narrator
And Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. And Samuel said: The Lord hath not chosen these.
And Samuel said unto Jesse: Are here all thy children And he said: There remaineth yet the youngest, and behold, he keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said: Send and fetch him.
And he sent and brought him in. And the Lord said: Arise, anoint him: for this is he.
PSALM {Chorus)
All praise to Him, the Lord of glory, The everlasting God, my helper. He has avenged all my wrongs and my
woes, And by His hand my people are made
safe. When hordes of heathen arose up against
By His right hand I felt myself sustained, His thunder pealed on the heads of the
foe, Who in their malice sought my end.
{Words after Clement Marot)
The Narrator
And Saul and the men of Israel were gathered together and set the battle in array against the Philistines.
And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, a giant. And he mocked the Israelites.
And David smote him in the forehead with a stone from his sling. And the Israelites shouted and pursued the Philistines even unto the gates of Ekron.
{Chorus) David is great! The Philistines o'erthrown. Chosen of God is he, Succored and unafraid. Saul hath slain his thousands, And ten thousands, David!
The Narrator
And Michal, Saul's daughter, loved David. And the evil spirit from the Lord was upon Saul as he sat in his house with
his javelin in his hand, and David played to him. And Saul sought to smite David even to the wall with the javelin. For he was old and David was young and beautiful.
{Tenor Solo) In the Lord I put my faith, I put my
trust. How say ye unto my soul: "Flee like any
bird unto the mountain" For behold, evil is here, And the wicked bend their bow, That they may privily shoot them that
are clean and upright.
The Narrator
So David fled and escaped, and came to the prophets. And he languished and pined in the heat of the desert. And he bade farewell to Jonathan, who loved him as a brother.
PSALM (S of ratio Solo)
O had I wings like a dove,
Then would I fly away and be at rest.
Save in the tomb alone is there no comfort
Is there no balm to heal this woe of mine
Where shall I find for my head some safe shelter
Morning and eve I pray and cry aloud.
The storm of my distress blows like the tempest,
Bearing to God my cries and my prayer.
The Narrator
And Saul sent messengers to take David. And they came to Naioth, in Ramah, and they found him with the company of the prophets, prophesying.
Man that is born of woman lives but a little while.
Whichever way he turn, the path he must pursue
Is heavy to his feet.
He cometh up like grass, which in time shall be mowed down.
He fleeth as a shadow,
And the place that once he knew remembers him no more.
The Narrator
Henceforth he must wander in the wilderness; his heart assailed by want, by care and weeping.
{Tenor Solo)
Pity me, Lord, for I am weak! A refuge and harbor I seek.
My weary head Thy wings shall cover;
When will the endless night be over Pity me, Lord, for I am weak! My heart upraise To hymn Thy bounty all my days!
O sun, arise to lead me on,
That with my harp, the victory won, I may return to sing a joyful song of praise!
The Narrator
And the Lord delivered Saul into the hands of David. So David came to the people by night; and behold, Saul lay sleeping with a spear at his bolster and cruse of water at his head. And David feared to destroy the Lord's anointed.
So David took the spear and the cruse of water from Saul's bolster; and he gat him away, and no man saw it, nor knew it, neither awaked: for they were all asleep: because a deep sleep from the Lord was fallen upon them.
And war broke out anew between the Philistines and the King of Israel. Saul's army is hard pressed on the steep hillsides, for the enemy's horses draw near, and David is with the Philistines. The
people of Israel call upon the Lord in vain.
{Chorus) God the Lord shall be my light and my
What cause have I to fear God the Lord shall be my strength in
His help is ever near. Though wicked enemies came,
My foes who my flesh would fain devour,
Bright sword and lance they might claim, Yet they stumble and fall upon that
hour. E'en though an host against me should
I shall not be afraid; From field of war the Lord will hear my
cries, And their arm shall be stayed.
The Narrator
And when Saul saw the host of the Philistines in Shunem, he was afraid, and his heart greatly trembled.
And when Saul inquired of the Lord, the Lord answered him not, neither by dreams nor by prophets.
And his servants said to him: Behold, there is a woman that hath a familiar spirit at En-dor.
And Saul disguised himself, and he went, and two men with him, and they came to the woman by night: and he said, I pray thee, bring me him up whom I shall name unto thee.
Then said the woman: Whom shall I bring up unto thee And he said: Bring me up Samuel.
By fire, by water, by speech and by wind, by sight and by sound, break thy
chains, burst the locks which bind thee! Appear! 'Tis time! I call thee from Sheol's darkness. Return, and enter into the temple of nine doors! Appear! Give thy blood! Let the breath of life return to thy nostrils; come from the depths of the earth! Appear!
The fire burns me; the fire below! It enters into me, it searches the marrow of my bones. It pierces me like a sharp sword. Arise! Appear! O why hast thou deceived me for thou art Saul!
The Shade of Samuel Why hast thou disquieted me, to bring
me up
The Narrator And Samuel prophesied to Saul, saying:
Moreover the Lord will also deliver Israel
with thee into the hand of the Philistines. And Saul fell with his sons in Mount
Gilboa. And the men of Israel fled from
before the Philistines.
And the Amalekite messenger brought to David the crown and the bracelet of Saul. Then David rent his clothes, and mourned and wept for Saul, and for Jonathan his son, and for the house of Israel; because they were fallen by the sword.
{Chorus and Soli)
The Narrator
{During the Chorus)
The beauty of Israel is slain upon thy high places; how are the mighty fallen!
Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon; lest the daughters of the Philistines rejoice.
Ye mountains of Gilboa, let there be no dew, neither let there be rain, upon
you, nor fields of offerings; for there the shield of the mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil.
From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the mighty, the bow of Jonathan turned not back, and the sword of Saul returned not empty.
Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided; they were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions.
Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet, with other delights, who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel.
How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! O Jonathan, thou wast slain in thine high places.
I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan; very pleasant hast thou been unto me; thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.
How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons of war perish!
The Daughters of Israel Ah! Ah! Weep for Saul!
The Narrator
Jerusalem! Jerusalem! David is king! He hath chosen thee to cherish the ark of God. Behold, today it shall be set in the midst of Israel.
Sister, oh sing thy song!
Never hath God forsaken us,
E'en in captivity,
Or in adversity.
Chosen of Him above,
On us now 'lights His love.
God the Lord comes to bless Israel.
The Narrator
And behold, shepherds lead their flocks, the workers in the fields bring their harvest and wine from their vineyards, and all to the glory of the Lord. O Israel, now get thee to the hill, for all peoples shall receive the blessing of God.
And David played before the Lord and danced before the ark, and the earth shook, even as an harp-string trembleth beneath the hand of a virgin.
Chorus Mighty God! Jehovah, be with us! O radiance of the morn, And the splendor of noon! Mighty God, be with us!
Priests (Before the Ark) Ope wide those doors that lead to heaven! Ope wide those gates that lead to justice! For the righteous alone enter therein, In those precious portals of God the Lord.
Many nations brought me to war, Yet in Jehovah's name they were destroyed;
Compassed me round like bees that swarm, Yet in Jehovah's name they were destroyed.
Each withered bush I set on fire, In great Jehovah's name it was destroyed; For He has shielded me from harm, And His right hand has led me on. Lord above, show Thyself, and scatter all our foes!
Chorus Mighty God! Jehovah, be with us!
The Angel (Soprano Solo)
Give ear; 'tis not for thee as king To build an house unto My name. Behold, a child is born to thee, And I will set him on thy throne. And he shall be My son, And I will be his Father. Then shall he build an house for My
And Solomon he shall be called, That over Israel peace may reign.
Choir of Angels Alleluia! Alleluia!
Chorus Now my voice, in song upsoaring,
Shall loud proclaim my king afar. His wealth of splendor, fast outpouring,
Shall put to nothing e'en the loveliest
of star. Pride of Adam's race that bore thee,
A simple shepherd, wont to sing, And yet surpassing all before thee,
Thou hast been chosen by the Lord
to be our king. God will send thee sons to cherish,
Who shall inherit in their turn; Thy name in glory shall not perish, And all the people as their pastor Shall announce thee master.
The Narrator
And the blessing of God rested upon David's house. All the kings of the earth are united with him, and he is the greatest among them all. But sin entered into his heart, for it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the -roof of the king's house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite; and she was very beautiful to look upon.
And David took Bathsheba to wife, and killed her husband Uriah the Hittite with the sword. And Bathsheba bare a son; but the thing that David had done displeased the Lord. And the Lord struck the child, and on the seventh day he died.
Pity me, God, in my distress! Turn not away, but heal me again! Wash me of sin and cleanse of shame, And in Thy hot displeasure, O chasten me not!
The Narrator
And the Lord sent Nathan unto David to reprove him for his sin.
And the wrath of the Lord fell upon David's house. For a brother had ravished his sister, and a brother killed his brother. And Absalom, David's well beloved son, rose up against his father, and David escaped and sought the desert.
{Tenor Solo)
O shall I raise mine eyes unto the mountains,
From whence should come my help
The Lord shall guide thy steps, going and coming,
From henceforth, evermore.
He will not suffer thy foot to be moved,
For He is on high, watching above;
The Lord who is thy keeper neither slumbers nor sleeps.
The Narrator
So the people went out into the field against Israel; and the battle was in the wood of F.phraim. And Joab slew Absalom, whose head was caught in the thick boughs of a great oak.
And when the king heard of it he was much moved, and went up into his chamber and wept.
The Narrator
And David signaled with his hand, and the army stood still. And David said: Ye warriors of Israel, ye are my brethren, ye are my bones and my flesh. Ye have established peace in the land. Receive my thanks!
The Narrator
His enemies o'erthrown, David sings a grateful song unto the Lord.
PSALM (Chorus)
Thee will I love, O Lord, who art my
Thou art my shield, the horn of my salvation.
God is my refuge safe; I trust in Him, My rock, my strength, my tower and my
In Him I find the solace that I long for; He guideth my steps, that I may walk in
I call on Him and invoke His aid, And I am saved from my strong enemy. When waves of death encompassed me, And snares of men made me afraid, Then did He send, and take me from
above, And drew me forth out of many waters.
(Words ajter Clement Maroi)
The Narrator
And David waxed old in his palace of cedar and gold. And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number the people. So the Lord sent pestilence upon Israel; and He sent an angel unto Jerusalem to destroy it.
And David proclaimed Solomon, the son of Bathsheba, king over Israel and
over Judah. And when Nathan had crowned Solomon, David looked on the temple for the last time.
The Narrator
And Nathan said: Before all Israel and before Jehovah we anoint as king Solomon, the son of David. And the people shouted: God save King Solomon!
The Narrator
And David said: The spirit of God is within me. One cometh after me to lead my people in the fear of the Lord. O how good it was to live! I thank thee, God, Thou who gavest me life.
The Angel (Sofrano Solo)
And God said: The day shall dawn To bring a flower, newly born,
From thy stem in fullness growing, In fragrance sweet, night and morn, All my people shall adorn,
With breath of life bestowing.
Choir of Angels Alleluia! Alleluia!
Concerto in B minor for Violoncello and
Orchestra, Op. 104...........Dvorak
Anton Dvorak was born in Nelahozeves on Vltava, near Prague, September 8, 1841; he died in Prague, May I, 1904.
It is as little known among performing musicians, as it is among the general listening public that Anton Dvorak was one of the most prolific composers of the late nineteenth century. If we judge him only by the extent of his work, he is incontestably a phenomenon in the world of music. Without a doubt Dvorak was one of the most distinguished musical personalities of the nineteenth century and should take his rightful place beside Brahms, Tchaikovsky, and Franck.
He ranks today among the great masters in the copiousness and extraordinary variety of his expression.
As a traditionalist he accepted the forms of his art without question, but he regenerated them by injecting a strong racial feeling, which gave brilliant vitality, depth, and warmth to everything he wrote. Dvorak possessed genuinely Slavonic characteristics that gave an imperishable color and lyrical character to his art. With a preponderance of temperament and emotion over reason and intellect, he seemed to be always intuitively guided to effect a proper relationship between what he wished to express, and the manner in which he did so. In this connection he had more in common with Mozart and Schubert than he had with Beethoven. His expression is fresh and irresistibly frank, and although it is moody at times and strangely sensitive, it is never deeply philosophical or brooding; gloom and depression are never allowed to predominate. There was no defiance, no mystical ecstacy in his makeup. He had the simple faith, the natural gaiety, the sane and robust qualities of Haydn. His music, therefore, lacks the breadth and the epic quality of Beethoven's; it possesses none of the transcendent emotional sweep of Tchaikovsky's; but for radiantly cheerful and comforting music, for goodhearted, peasantlike humor, for unburdened lyricism, Dvorak has no peer.
The violoncello concerto was one of the last works written by Dvorak while visiting America. It was begun in November, 1894, and was finished in New York, February 9, 1895. It belongs to a period in Dvorak's creative life when his ideas were co-ordinated rather than developed, but even here his style is lucid and his workmanship skillful.
In its attractive rhythms, its noble and soulful melodies, and its broad, richly colored symphonic scoring, the Concerto ranks today as one of the finest and most attractive works in the whole literature of the violoncello.
Friday Afternoon, May 8 Overture to "Russian and Ludmilla"...... . Glinka
Michael Ivanovich Glinka was born at Novospasskoi in 1803; he died at Berlin in 1857.
In the reign of Catherine the Great, Russia showed a vigorous musical enthusiasm, but an enthusiasm which emanated from foreign sources, particularly French and Italian. No conscious effort had been made toward the formation of a national artistic style until the beginning of the nineteenth century. Glinka was the founder of that style. In his opera "The Life for the Tzar" (1834), Glinka had found a subject of national import, and in his music he established a definite Russian school. If "The Life for the Tzar" is to be regarded as a national epic, Glinka's second opera, "Russian and Ludmilla" (1842), must be credited with a significance equally nationalistic, though in a different sphere. Here he forsook history for folklore, as Wagner had done after his "Rienzi."
The influence of "Russian and Ludmilla" was tremendous. It set a style for such creations as have since come from the pens of Borodin, Rimski-Korsakov, and Stravinski. Rimski-Korsakov's "Kostchei," "Tsar Sultan," "Snow Maiden," "Sadko," "Kitesh" (performed at the 1932 May Festival in concert form), and Stravinski's "Fire Bird Suite" all have a foundation in a folklore in which the supernatural and the fantastic predominate.
But there are other elements to support this opera's claim to the distinction of being a pioneer work. It is here that oriental color is for the first time brought to Russian music. The opera is not the only field benefiting from Glinka's policy. Balakirev's piano fantasia "Islamey," an epic of the orient, Borodin's "In the Steppes of Central Asia," Korsakov's "Scheherazade," all owe their inspiration to "Russian and Ludmilla."
Ludmilla, daughter of Prince Svietozar of Kiev, had three suitors, one of whom, the knight Russian, was accepted. At her wedding Ludmilla was carried away by the magician Chernomor, and her hand was promised by her father to the suitor who would rescue her. Russian, evoking benevolent magic, received a charmed sword and rescued Ludmilla. On the homeward journey, another suitor, Farlaf, cast the pair into magic slumber and took the maiden to Prince Svietozar, demanding her hand in marriage. Russian, returning to the palace, denounced the traitor Farlaf and won the hand of Ludmilla.
The overture contains so small an amount of the musical material found in the subsequent pages of the opera as to be hardly representative of it. It is
clearly written in the classical form. The principal theme in D major, 2-2 time, is announced in the full orchestra. The second theme in F major is given out by the 'celli and violas, accompanied by the strings. There is the customary development and recapitulation, and the overture ends with a coda. The theme of the coda, however, is of unusual interest. It is used throughout the opera as a leitmotif or characteristic theme, designating the conspiracies of Chernomor. It is a descending whole-tone scale. This revolutionary tonality, usually accredited to Debussy, is remarkable in a work of 1842!
Cantata for Children, "The Walrus and
the Carpenter".........Percy Fletcher
Percy Fletcher was born December 2, 1880, in Derby, England.
It is not so easy a task as it appears to set to music a text as unusual as Lewis Carroll's "The Walrus and the Carpenter," without destroying the particular charm that comes to us through the utterly delightful nonsense of the words. To retain a sufficient amount of musical sanity and pure musical interest, and yet not evaporate the topsy-turvy mood created by the text, needs the most sensitive kind of manipulation. Mr. Fletcher has succeeded in retaining not only the atmosphere of the poem, but in actually emphasizing some of its most curious and fantastic moments.
Throughout, delightfully foolish verse is matched with the whimsical charm of a music, simple to "the point of nai'vete, but particularly adapted to the voices of children.
We have a story to relate
Which may be rather long, And so as not to worry you
We'll tell it you in song. 'Twas told to gentle Alice,
(Who reads the book will see), By Tweedledum's twin brother,
Whose name was Tweedledee.
The Walrus and the Carpenter
Is what the tale is called, And by its quaint philosophy
You soon will be enthralled. The moral of the story
We leave for you to guess; But though you may not do so,
You'll like it none the less.
The sun was shining on the sea, Shining with all his might;
He did his very best to make The billows smooth and bright,
And this was odd, because it was The middle of the night.
The moon was shining sulkily, Because she thought the sun
Had got no business to be there After the day was done:-"It's very rude of him," she said, "To come and spoil the fun!"
The sea was wet as wet could be,
The sands were dry as dry; You could not see a cloud, because
No cloud was in the sky: No birds were flying overhead,
There were no birds to fly.
The Walrus and the Carpenter Were walking close at hand;
They wept like anything to see Such quantities of sand:
"If this were only cleared away," They said, "it would be grand!"
"If seven maids, with seven mops,
Swept it for half a year, Do you suppose," the Walrus said,
"That they could get it clear" "I doubt it," said the Carpenter,
And shed a bitter tear.
"Oh, Oysters, come and walk with us!"
The Walrus did beseech-"A pleasant walk, a pleasant talk,
Along the briny beach; We cannot do with more than four
To give a hand to each."
The eldest Oyster looked at him,
But never a word he said; The eldest Oyster winked his eye,
And shook his heavy head--¦ Meaning to say he did not choose
To leave the oyster-bed.
But four young Oysters hurried up,
All eager for the treat; Their coats were brushed, their faces washed,
Their shoes were clean and neat-And this was odd, because, you know,
They hadn't any feet.
Four other Oysters followed them,
And yet another four; And thick and fast they came at last,
And more, and more, and more-All hopping through the frothy waves,
And scrambling to the shore.
The Walrus and the Carpenter
Walked on a mile or so, And then they rested on a rock
Conveniently low: And all the little Oysters stood
And waited in a row.
"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things: Of shoes--and ships--and sealing wax
--Of cabbages--and kings-And why the sea is boiling hot-And whether pigs have wings!"
"But wait a bit," the Oysters cried, "Before we have our chat;
For some of us are out of breath, And all of us are fat!"
"No hurry!" said the Carpenter: They thanked him much for that.
"A loaf of bread," the Walrus said,
"Is what we chiefly need: Pepper and vinegar besides
Are very good indeed-Now, if you're ready, Oysters dear,
We can begin to feed."
"But not on us," the Oysters cried,
Turning a little blue, "After such kindness, that would be
A dismal thing to do!" "The night is fine," the Walrus said,
"Do you admire the view"
"It was so kind of you to come,
And you are very nice!" The Carpenter said nothing, but
"Cut us another slice: I wish you were not quite so deaf-I've had to ask you twice!"
"It seems a shame," the Walrus said, "To play them such a trick,
After we've brought them out so far, And made them trot so quick!"
The Carpenter said nothing, but "The butter's spread too thick!"
"I weep for you," the Walrus said,
"I deeply sympathize!" With sobs and tears he sorted out
Those of the largest size, Holding his pocket-handkerchief
Before his streaming eyes.
"Oh, Oysters," said the Carpenter, "You've had a pleasant run!
Shall we be trotting home again" But answer came there none-And this was scarcely odd, because They'd eaten every one.
Our story now is ended,
Our fairy-tale is told; You've listened to it patiently
As Alice did of old. No doubt you like the Walrus best
Because he was so grieved; Or do you think he ate the most,
As Tweedledee believed
Then should you like the Carpenter
Because he ate the least, You must agree with Tweedledum,
He had a monstrous feast; But if you dream of them to-night,
We hope you will not end By thinking you were gobbled up
By the Walrus and his friend.
"Romeo and Juliet," Overture-Fantasy
(after Shakespeare).........Tchaikovsky
Peter llich Tchaikovsky was born at Wotinsk, May 7, 184O; he died at Saint Petersburg, November 6, 1893.
When Thordwalsen had finished his bust of Byron in Rome, Byron cried, "No, that is nothing like me, I am far unhappier than that." Here is the eponymous hero of an age. "His being," said Goethe, "consists in rich despair," and, in truth, fame, love, wealth, and beauty turned him into a despiser of the world. He was the true inventor of "Weltschmerz," the sorrow that suffers from the world, and is therefore incurable, for only by the complete abolition of the world can it be destroyed. The vulnerable spot of this hero lay not in his heel, really, but in his soul. Like Faust, he pined in enjoyment and, like Hamlet, in "to be" he constantly sensed "not to be." The soul-life of the whole epoch bore the stamp of this man for whom "sorrow was knowledge." Just as a famous picture distributes itself among mankind in thousands of reproductions cheap and expensive, coarse and fine, exact and careless, so Europe was populated with innumerable copies of Byron which, with more or less success, more or less exactly, or more or less superficially tried to reproduce the essence of this extraordinary creature.
The age was literally infected with Byronism. Already Chateaubriand, who gave such fluent and beautiful expression to the emotional ideas originated by Rousseau, has his Rene say, "Everything wearies me, painfully I drag my boredom about with me, and so my whole life is a yawn." Goethe's Werther, too, had this romantic desire to feel and suffer uniquely. Byron's Manfred reflected an increasing egoism in the expression of melancholy. Manfred, like
Werther and Rene, suffered from an unhappiness caused by hidden, indefinable longings. They felt "le desenchantement de la vie" and they suffered from a universal and self-cultivated melancholy. In the novels of the time, the heroes were all victims of a mixture of egoism and sensibility. Their philosophy was the Leopardian "sorrow and ennui is our being, and dung the earth--nothing more. Wherever one looks, no meaning, no fruit." In Pushkin's Eugene Onegin and Lermantov's Hero of Our Time, the heroes play the part of disillusioned young men, who, tired of life, wrap themselves in the mantle of Byronism. The whole world was in the grip of "la maladie du siecle" It was, as Immerman said, "as though humanity tossed about in its little bark by an overwhelming ocean, is suffering from a moral seasickness of which the outcome is hardly to be seen."
The sources for this world sickness can be found in a measure in the effects the Industrial Revolution had upon the lives of men. As a result of this tremendous reorganizing force with its consequent power and wealth, a new attitude toward life was created. The growth of a rationalistic materialism destroyed suddenly the comforting old beliefs in the Bible. It gave rise to a period of doubt and disillusionment; it seemed as though the old culture were to disappear completely. Strong spirits like Carlyle, John Stewart Mill, and Ruskin fought valiantly for the "revenge of instinct." Less fortified minds, however, fell before the onslaught of industrialism and its materialism--sunk into mental and spiritual apathy, and decayed. With decay came disease and with disease contagion crept into the souls of men. From this overfertilized emotional soil grew a decadent school of art. Chopin's supsensitive soul cried out its longing in his languorous nocturnes, Berlioz in his "Fantastique Symphony" pictured the narcotic dreams of a young artist who because of an unrequited love had attempted suicide by opium. Wagner, expressing one side of the Industrial Revolution in the imperious force and merciless drive of his music, nevertheless allowed his desiresick soul to long for death as the only release from the world. The Renunciation motive is at the basis of his great dramas. Senta renounces life for the salvation of the Dutchman, Elizabeth dies for Tannhauser, Briinnhilde throws herself upon the funeral pyre of Siegfried to redeem the race, and Tristan and Isolde live only for the night and long for death to unite them forever. Heine characterized this feeling in Germany. "People," he said, "practiced renunciation and modesty, bowed before the invisible, snatched at shadow kisses and blue-flowered scents."
Tchaikovsky, like Byron, was a child of his age. It is truly said of Byron that he had but one subject--himself, and that saying is equally true of Tchaikovsky. If his personality is less puissant and terrible than that of Byron, his artistic instincts are reflected none the less forcibly in his self-cultivated and exhibitionistic art. His persistent penchant for melancholy expression, his feverish
sensibility, his revulsions of artistic feeling, and his superficial emotions which sink him into morbid pessimism, deadening depression, and neurotic fears on the one hand, or raise him to wild hysteria on the other--picture him in the framework of his age.
"And if bereft of speech,
Man bears his pain,
A god gave me the gift
To tell my sorrow," wrote Tasso. Of this gift, Tchaikovsky had his share.
In "Romeo and Juliet," Tchaikovsky wrote some of the most beautifully expressive and richly poetic music in his entire career. Written when he was young and full of romantic yearnings, the score, uneven as it is, is full of wistful passion, lyrical loveliness, and poignant melancholy. With it all, there is dramatic intensity and extreme vitality. It was inspired, obviously, by Shakespeare's tragedy; but it was written at the suggestion of the Russian composer, Mily Balakirev, who in some instances even outlined the character of the themes.
The overture was composed in the autumn of 1869, when Tchaikovsky was supposed to have been deeply moved by the fact that the beautiful French singer, Desiree Artot, jilted him to marry another. Literary mythologists and sentimentalists never tire of retelling the story of this passion, or of suggesting it as the source of the melancholy and despair found in the pages of "Romeo and Juliet." They have been aided in this belief by Kashkin, who a year later, sitting next to Tchaikovsky at a theater where Artot was performing, wrote that "when the singer came on the stage, Peter Illyich put his opera glasses to his eyes and kept them there till the end of the performance, although it is doubtful how much he could see, for the tears ran unheeded down his cheek." This demonstration, however, was small proof of grief for unrequited love, for tears came easily to Tchaikovsky. Music was often paid such a tribute. It is highly improbable that Artot left any unhealed wounds in Tchaikovsky's soul. Years later he chanced to sit next to her at dinner. To his brother Modeste he wrote, "She was in evening dress and fat as a bubble. We were friends instantly, as though the past had never been. I was inexpressibly glad to see her and found her as fascinating as ever." Tchaikovsky was not of the stuff of which husbands are made, and it is much more probable that Shakespeare and the enthusiastic suggestions of Balakirev were the real sources of his inspiration.
An introduction of a religious nature is intended to suggest the character of Friar Lawrence (clarinets and bassoons, Andante non tanto, quasi moderato, F-sharp minor, 4-4). It is followed by an Allegro section in B minor, depicting the conflict between the opposing houses of Capulet and Montague. Then follows the expressively beautiful love music, based upon two themes, one rhap[38]
sodic in nature and heard in the English horn with muted violas, supported by horns. The other is an exquisite chordal passage for divided and muted strings. Again the scene of conflict returns with its strife and fury, against which the Friar Lawrence theme contends in vain. With greater intensity the passionate love music is heard again, and culminates in a great climax. After a brief and forbidding silence, there occurs a woeful reminiscence of the ecstatic first love theme (celli, violins, and bassoon over drum beats and pizzicato basses) and an elegiac conclusion is formed from a modification of the love song heard in high unison strings, supported by woodwinds, horns, and harp.
Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, D major, Op. 35 . Tchaikovsky Allegro moderato; Canzonetta--Andante; Finale--Allegro vivacissimo.
A Russian to the core, Tchaikovsky was nevertheless criticized severely by those self-styled "nationalists," "The Five," for being too strongly influenced by German and French methods and styles to be a true exponent of Russian music. He, on the other hand, found much to admire in their art, and was very enthusiastic in his praise of Rimski-Korsakov in particular. Nevertheless, he resented the assumption of superiority and the canons of judgment laid down by this coterie. He turned rather to Beethoven and to the scholarly technique exhibited in the construction of his symphonies and concerti. At the same time he was not immune to the charm of Italian music, and although he deprecated its superficial use of the orchestra, he did sense in the music of Italy the eternal value of pure melody, which he brought to fullest beauty through his superb and unequaled knowledge of instrumental effects. From Beethoven, Tchaikovsky no doubt gained his superior sense of architectural design and unity of style, but so intent was he on the fascination and charm of the single episode, and so aware of the spell of the immediate melodic beauty and the particular suggestive power of the orchestral coloring, that he never gained the superb structural heights or the completely epic conception found in Beethoven. The constant oscillation between sudden exaltation, violent passion, and unresisted submission in his temperament excluded the sustaining and impersonal elements necessary to the true epic. He gave himself up, as Sibelius noted when speaking of his music, to every situation without looking beyond the moment, and in spite of the fact that his symphonies and concerti rank among the finest examples of musical architecture, their spirit, like those of Schubert, is not symphonic. But such is the beauty and power of his themes, so fine is their general architectural construction, and above all so masterful and effective is the use he makes of the orchestral palette that we do not consider it a discrepancy to find so thoroughly a lyric conception encased in such epic forms.
As in the case of Brahms, Mendelssohn, and Beethoven, a single concerto for violin is Tchaikovsky's contribution to the literature for violin virtuosi. Al[39]
though completed in the spring of 1878 with the assistance of Kotek, a violinist who was visiting the composer at Clarens, almost four years elapsed before the work was given a public performance. Tchaikovsky had dedicated the concerto to Leopold Auer--the celebrated teacher of the performer of the composition on this occasion--who was then the principal teacher of violin at the Petrograd Conservatory. On account of the difficulties of the solo part, the famous virtuoso could not bring himself to undertake a presentation of the work.
Brodsky, a concert artist of considerable reputation and a teacher of violin at the Moscow Conservatory with which Tchaikovsky also was connected as instructor in composition, produced the Concerto for the first time in Vienna at a concert of the Philharmonic Society, Hans Richter conducting. The result of the performance was indecisive, since there had been only one rehearsal and the orchestra accompanied -pianissimo throughout, so that if anything went wrong the effect would be less displeasing. The reviewers of the work were almost unanimous in its condemnation, though there had been much applause at the concert. The criticism which hurt the composer most, when in Italy he chanced on reviews of the performance of which he had been totally unaware, was written by Hanslick and published in the Neue Freie Presse of Vienna. It would seem from the following that Hanslick had neither sympathy for Russian music in general, nor respect for Tchaikovsky:
The violin is no longer played, it is yanked about, it is torn asunder, beaten black and blue. I do not know whether it is possible for any one to conquer these harassing difficulties, but I do know that Mr. Brodsky martyrized his hearers as well as himself.
For several paragraphs the reviewer continued in this vein, seeming to go out of his way to discover phrases of opprobrium to cast at this work.
The fact that the concerto has since made a "triumphal progress" through the concert halls of Europe and America and has been interpreted by the greatest virtuosi (only those of supreme technical powers can essay it) is significant proof that the initial verdict of the Vienna critics was neither final nor just.
Analysis First Movement {Allegro moderato, D major, 4-4).
The first theme heard in the first violins is not the principal subject. This is announced by the solo instrument after an anticipation of it in the orchestra. After some brilliant passages, the second theme is also announced by the solo instrument. Following a short episode, the development section manipulates the first theme. The solo instrument is heard interpolating a great amount of complicated passage work, and after further treatment of the first theme in the orchestra, a long and rather elaborate cadenza is played by the violins. The recapitulation of the first section follows and the movement ends with a brilliant coda.
Second Movement (Canzonetta--Andante, G minor, 3-4).
After a twelve-measure introduction in the woodwinds, the violins announce the first theme. The solo instrument presents the second theme, which is marked by a triplet figure. This finally leads to a return of the first theme still in the solo instrument, with an accompanying arpeggio figure in the clarinet. The introduction to the movement returns and then leads without pause into the finale.
Third Movement (Allegro vivacissimo, D major, 2-4).
After a sixteen-measure introduction and cadenza for the solo violin, the principal theme of this movement is announced in the solo violin. It is in reality a Russian dance known as the "Trepak." In a more tranquil section, the second theme is heard in the violin over a drone bass. After a return of the "Trepak" theme there is some development of it. The second theme reappears and the movement ends with an extended and extremely brilliant coda built upon material from the opening theme.
Polovetzian Dances from "Prince Igor"......Borodin
Alexander Porphyrievich Borodin was born November 12, 1834, at Petrograd; he died there, February 27, 1887.
"Slovo O Polku Igorevy," or the "Song of the Army of Igor," is one of the oldest of Russian manuscript chronicles, dating from the twelfth century, and may be said to compare with the Arthurian legends in historical significance. The story is told in rhythmic prose and abounds in lyrical beauties, stressing throughout the close ties that exist between man and nature.
The plot for the opera was derived from this old national epic, which deals with the expedition of Russian princes against the Polovetzians, a nomadic race, akin to the ancient Turks, who had invaded Russian principalities.
The story concerns Igor, Prince of Seversk, who sets out to punish a tribe of these Eastern nomads, is defeated and taken prisoner with his son, and later escapes. That is the whole of the essential stuff of the drama. The remaining action that pads out the prologue and the four acts appears to be extraneous.
Borodin's attention was first turned to the medieval epic of Prince Igor as a possible subject for an opera by Stassov in 1871. He lived with the poem for sixteen years, as Beethoven lived with Schiller's "Ode to Joy" for thirty, and Goethe with the "Faust" legend all his life. The story of Igor, with its wealth of contrasting character, skillful combination of tragedy, comedy, and barbaric energy, appealed to Borodin from the beginning, and although he realized that
Vladimir Vassilievich Stassov was a celebrated art critic and literary champion of the "New Russian School of Music" (The Five). His influence on contemporary Russian art was immense.
the subject was unsuitable for a dramatic purpose, he returned to it over and over again, after having abandoned it.
His love for the story led Borodin into vast researches in the fields of history, archaeology, and folk music, and every persistent fragment was carefully studied so that not merely the superficial atmosphere of the time should be reproduced, but its essential spirit made to live again. And in Borodin, the spirit of that old barbarism of the vast steppes and the nomadic warriors did live again. Borodin captured the spirit of Igor so miraculously that the weakness of the dramatic substance in which it is embodied is not particularly disconcerting; although the spirit of the opera is often too strong for the stuff in which it is embedded. For a few hours we watch the pictures of Russia's heroic age, while our receptive faculties and imagination are quickened by the superb vitality and barbaric color of the music. The fate of Igor scarcely interests us at all, compared with that of Boris, but the atmosphere in which he moves and lives does communicate its life to us. The real subject of the opera is then not the person of Prince Igor, but the spirit of a great people and the glamorous atmosphere of a distant period, and this is caught essentially in Borodin's music, to such a point, in fact, that the work becomes most vital when the happenings on the stage illustrate the music. The music is the subject, the action and stage picture, the objective manifestations. The music is seldom used to characterize, or bring us into personal contact with the essence of the dramatic movement. From this point of view the opera "Prince Igor" is as far removed from Moussorgsky's "Boris Godounov" as "Boris" is from Wagner's "Tristan." In its racy humor, its robust realism, and its barbaric energy, it is entitled to rank as one of Russia's finest national operas, and in this connection justly claims a close affinity with Moussorgsky's powerful music drama.
One of the superb moments in "Prince Igor" is at the end of the second act, where Polovetzian Dances are featured. "No composer has understood better," writes Habets,f "either the charm or the wildness of these rhythms and harmonies of the East, which convey to us the profound expression of a civilization so different from our own. Never has a composer attained a greater vividness of coloring than in the dances of the Polovetzy, where we find, side by side with the rhythmic sonority of the most primitive instruments, the voluptuous charm of the oriental melodies. . . . We feel that all this belongs to a race and period different from our own--barbarous, if you will, but none the less full of grandeur and magnificence."
At his death in 1887, the score was still unfinished, with some numbers in a fragmentary state and nothing orchestrated. The work was completed by Korsakov and Glazunov and published in 1889.
t Alfred Habets, Borodin and Liszt (translated by Rosa Newmarch). London: Digby, Long and Co., 1895.
Friday Evening, May 8
In Nazi Germany today, Wagner's ideas, like a hundred aspects of German history during the last century and a half, have been perverted to evil ends. Hitler's diabolical genius has seized upon them for a purpose never intended, nor even dreamed of by their creator, and has interpreted Wagner's art to be the embodiment of a political philosophy--the true expression of force and might and Teutonic superiority--the postulation of both aristocratic racialism and plebeian socialism.
Program notes are not the medium for discussions of this nature; but it will not be amiss at a time like this, when violent prejudices are beginning to crystallize, to emphasize the true and moving spirit of humanity that is to be found in Wagner's art--a spirit that must not be overshadowed or lost by the superimposition of false doctrines of power, brute force, and hate. Wagner's art is still accepted, and reverently attended to, by what still remains of the civilized world, as one of the most profound and searching expressions of the deepest sources of the human spirit. For Wagner, racial and national-socialist goals were to be achieved through art and music, and the invisible Volk-soul--not by means of any material institutions or through coercion.
In the words of the great contemporary German humanitarian, Thomas Mann, Wagner's aim was:
To purify art and hold it sacred for the sake of a corrupt society. . . . He was all for catharsis and purification and dreamed of consecrating society by means of aesthetic elevation and cleansing it from its greed for gold, luxury, and all unloveliness. ... It is thoroughly inadmissible to ascribe to Wagner's nationalistic attitudes and speeches, the meaning they would have today. That would be to falsify and misuse them, to besmirch their romantic purity.
The national idea, when Wagner introduced it as a familiar and workable theme into his works--that is to say, before it was realized--was in its historically legitimate heroic epoch. It had its good, living and genuine period; it was poetry and intellect-a future value. But when the basses thunder out at the stalls the verse about the "German Sword," or that kernel and finale of the "Meistersinger": "Though Holy Roman Empire sink to dust, There still survives our sacred German art," in order to arouse an ulterior patriotic emotion--that is demagogy. It is precisely these lines . . . that attest the intellectuality of Wagner's nationalism and its remoteness from the political sphere; they betray a complete anarchistic indifference to the state, so long as the spiritually German, the "Deutsche Kunst" survives.
Thomas Mann, Freud, Goethe and Wagner. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., 1933.
Not since Bach has a composer so overwhelmingly dominated his period, so completely overtopped his contemporaries and followers with a sovereignty of imagination and potency of expression. But Bach and Wagner share little else, actually, aesthetically, or spiritually. Bach's music is transcendent, abstract, absolute, impersonal, and detached; that of Wagner is most individual, emanating directly and unmistakably from his personality; it is movingly sensuous, excitingly emotional, and highly descriptive. His life, unlike that of Bach, was thrilling, superbly vital, brilliant, and colorful. While Bach worked oblivious of posterity, Wagner, sustained by a prophetic vision and knowledge that he was writing for distant generations, worked consciously for fame. It gave to his music a self-consciousness, an excessiveness, and at times an overefFectiveness. Bach died in obscurity, while Wagner lived to see every one of his major works performed on the stages of the world. He died with universal recognition and the realization that in the short space of his life he had changed the whole current of the tonal art, and that his mind and will had influenced the entire music of his age.
The synthetic and constructive power of Wagner's mind enabled him to assimilate the varied tendencies of his period to such a degree that he became the fulfillment of nineteenth-century romanticism in music. He conditioned the future style of opera, infusing into it a new dramatic truth and significance; he emphasized the marvelous emotional possibilities that lay in the orchestra, thereby realizing the expressive potentialities of instrumentation. He created not a "school" of music, as many lesser minds than his have done, but a school of thought. His grandiose ideas, sweeping years away as though they were minutes, have ever since found fertilization in the imaginations of those creators of music who have felt that their world has become too small. He sensed Beethoven's striving for new spheres of emotional experience; and in a music that was new and glamorous, incandescent, unfettered, and charged with passion, he entered a world of strange ecstasies to which music had never before had wings to soar.
In all the volumes of essays that Wagner wrote explaining and defining his system, a few facts stand forth conspicuously as the foundation of that system. His attempt was to reverse the relation in which music stood to the drama in the conventional opera, and to place the emphasis upon the drama, with music only one of the subsidiary elements employed to express the true meaning of the text--it was one of the means of expression, not the principal end, the others being action, declamation, and scenic art. These are fused together in a pure organic union working harmoniously for the expression of the poet's thought. The libretto must be in and of itself a consistent and reasonable drama and not merely a series of disconnected and unrelated episodes as it was in the conventional opera form.
Likewise the music, setting aside many of the old forms so necessary to it as a pure art, becomes, in the music drama, a flexible, plastic medium for dramatic ideas. Instead of developed melodic patterns, regular in form, involving a certain balance and recurrence of phrase, such as fill the pages of Mozart or Rossini, we have in the music drama an ever-changing dramatic melody depending for its effect on the accompanying action and setting, as well as on the orchestral accompaniment. In place of a strong harmonic basis, i.e., comparatively few chords, and those well knit together, we have in the music drama a restless, many-colored tone picture, changing rapidly to match the changing emotions of the drama.
Overture to "Tannhauser" ........ Richard Wagner
Richard Wagner was born May 22, 1813, at Leipzig; he died February 13, 1883, at Venice.
"Into this work," wrote Wagner, "I precipitated myself with my whole soul, and with such consuming ardor that, the nearer I approached its end, the more I was haunted with the notion that perhaps a sudden death would prevent me from bringing it to completion; so that when the last note was written I experienced a feeling of joyful elation, as if I had escaped a mortal danger." But Wagner gave even further testimony to the flame of enthusiasm which burned within his soul when "Tannhauser" was in process of creation. "This opera," he wrote, "must be good, or else I never shall be able to do anything that is good. It acted upon me like real magic; whenever and wherever I took up the work I was all aglow and trembling with excitement. After the various long interruptions from labor, the first breath always transported me back into the flagrant atmosphere that had intoxicated me at its first conception."
Wagner has, himself, left an explanation of the overture to "Tannhauser," of which the following is a translation:
At the commencement the orchestra represents the song of the pilgrims, which, as it approaches, grows lounder and louder, but at length recedes. It is twilight; the last strain of the pilgrims' song is heard. As night comes on, magical phenomena present themselves; a roseate-hued and fragrant mist arises, wafting the voluptuous shouts of joy to our ear; we are aware of the dizzy motion of a horribly wanton dance.
These are the seductive magic spells of the "Venusberg" which at the hour of night reveal themselves to those whose breath is inflamed with unholy desire. Attracted by these enticing phenomena, a tall, manly figure approaches; it is Tannhauser, the Minnesinger. Proudly exulting, he trolls frorth his jubilant love song as if to challenge the wanton magic crew to turn their attention to himself. Wild shouts respond to his call; the roseate cloud surrounds him more closely; its enrapturing fragrance
overwhelms him and intoxicates his brain. Endowed now with supernatural vision, he perceives in the dim, seductive light spread out before him, an unspeakably lovely female figure; he hears a voice which, with its tremulous sweetness, sounds like the call of sirens, promising to the brave the fulfillment of their wildest wishes.
It is Venus herself whom he sees before him; heart and soul, he burns with desire; hot consuming longing inflames the blood in his veins; by an irresistible power he is drawn into the presence of the goddess, and with the highest rapture raises his song in her praise. As if in response to his magic call, the wonder of "Venusberg" is revealed to him in its fullest brightness; boisterous shouts of wild laughter re-echo on every side; Bacchantes rush hither and thither in their drunken revels; and, dragging Tannhauser into their giddy dance, deliver him over to the love-warm arms of the goddess, who, passionately embracing him, carries him off, drunken with joy, to the unapproachable depths of the invisible kingdom. The wild throng then disperses, and their commotion ceases; a voluptuous plaintive whirring alone now stirs the air, and a horrible murmur pervades the spot where the enrapturing magic spell had shown itself, and which now again is overshadowed by darkness.
Day at length begins to dawn, and the song of the returning pilgrims is heard in the distance. As their songs draw nearer, and the day succeeds to night, that whirring and murmuring in the air, which but just now sounded to us like the horrible wail of the damned, gives way to more joyful strains; till at last, when the sun has risen in all its splendor and the pilgrims' song with mighty inspiration proclaims to the world, and to all that is and lives, salvation won; its surging sound swells into a rapturous torrent of sublime ecstasy. This divine song represents to us the shout of joy at his release from the curse of the unholiness of the "Venusberg." Thus all the pulses of life palpitate and leap for joy ia this song of deliverance; and the two divided elements, spirit and mind, God and nature, embrace each other in the holy uniting kiss of love.
Schmerzen 1 T, ,,T
t.. y...........Richard Wagner
Traume J
Between November 30, 1857, anc May 1, 1858, in the city of Zurich, while working on "Tristan and Isolde" Wagner composed five songs to poems of Mathilde Wessendonk ("Fiinf Gedichte fur eine Frauenstimme").
The song "Traume" (Dreams) was described by Wagner as a "study" for "Tristan." Its theme is heard in the duet in Act II to the words, "O sink' hernieder, Nacht der Liebe." "Schmerzen" (Sorrows) was rewritten twice by Wagner, and it remains perhaps the greatest of the five songs in depth of feeling and emotional intensity. While there is no direct connection between this song
Mathilde Wesendonk first met Wagner in Zurich in 1852, when she was twenty-three year of age. She became his inspiration for Isolde. In 1861, two years after the completion of this work, he wrote to her: "For my havingwritten 'Tristan and Isolde,' I thank you from my deepest soul, to all eternity."
and the score of "Tristan," there is, harmonically speaking, a resemblance to the Introduction to Act II. Wagner was often, as he once stated, "already intoxicated by the musical aroma" of his dramatic subject long before that subject took shape, and before the versification was completed or the scenes arranged. These songs are further proof of the contention that Wagner, more often than not, actually conditioned his poetry and drama to fit a previously conceived musical idea. In a letter to Princess Marie Wittgenstein he once wrote "In the second act of 'Tristan'--but you know nothing about that yet--it is all at present, only music." In this instance, a part of that music had been conceived and written in these songs before it took its final and full-bodied shape in Act II.
Sun, that every evening weepest
Tears that crimson all the sky, Sad to ocean's heart thou creepest
All too early must thou die. Yet, tomorrow thou wilt rise,
Glorying in another birth, Flaunt thy banner through the skies,
Triumph o'er the conquered earth! Why should I, then, cry my sorrow,
Why, my heart, shouldst thou repine, Since the sun must die each morrow.
Daily suffer pangs like mine And if death be life's beginning,
Grief the gate that leads to bliss, Joy eternal am I winning!
Nature, take my thanks for this!
TRAUME (Dreams)
Say what mystic dreams have bound me, Lulled me with their sweet deceiving,
Long their potent spells surround me;
Why their magic still be weaving Dream thoughts bearing me a message.
Day by day more fair, more new, Thrilling with its heavenly presage,
All my raptured spirit through! Dream thoughts, like a ray of glory,
On my weary spirit falling, Writing there the endless story,
All forgetting, all recalling! Dream thoughts, like a ray of glory,
On my weary spirit falling, Writing there the endless story,
All forgetting, all recalling! Dream thoughts, like the sun that kisses
Flowers that sleep beneath the snow, With the promise of new blisses,
That the summer shall bestow, Bids them blossom, grow in splendor,
Dream their fragrant life away On thy bosom warm and tender;
Then sink lifeless, and decay!
Elsa's Traume, from "Lohengrin".......Wagner
When Wagner composed "Lohengrin" in 1847, ne entered a new realm of expression. So new was this world that his contemporaries greeted it with terrific antagonism, and Wagner, as its creator, was vilified with a fury and persistence that seems incredible today. Ignorance, chauvinism, race hatred, pedantry, and philistinism united to form an opposition such as no other man has ever been confronted with outside of religion or politics. The "gentlemen of the press" greeted him as "The Bavarian Buffoon," "Vandal of Art," "Murderer of Melody," "The Marat of Music." But the writings of the leading con[47]
temporary critics will bear witness to their prejudice in hearing a "new" music for the first time. How mercilessly and yet how glibly they damned themselves with the stroke of their own pens! Thus they wrote in 1850 of "Lohengrin":
"The music of 'Lohengrin' is a disagreeable precipitate of nebulous theories-a frosty sense and soul--congealing tone whining. It is an abyss of ennui .... Nine-tenths of the score contains miserable utterly inane phrases. The whole instrumentation breathes of an impure atmosphere." "Every sentiment for what is noble and dignified in art protests against such an insult to the very essence of music." . . . "The music of 'Lohengrin' is blubbering baby talk." . . . "Its music is formlessness reduced to a system, the work of an anti-melodious fanatic."
The aria familiarly know as "Elsa's Dream" occurs in the second scene of Act I, in which Elsa of Brabant, accused by Frederick of Telramund of murdering her brother, Gottfried, for his estates, is brought before Henry the Fourth, King of Germany, to answer her accusers. It is decreed that justice will be done through ordeal by battle. Reluctantly at first, Elsa, when asked who her defender will be, tells of a knight in shining armor who had appeared to her in a dream. Against an accompaniment of shimmering color and ecstatic harmonies, which create the impression of a vision, she exclaims that the knight will appear to fight her cause. In answer to her call Lohengrin appears and, in combat with Telramund, defeats him.
The text, condensed and freely translated, follows:
Elsa: Oft in the lonely hours, I had prayed to God for aid. In sorrow and tears, and with a heavy heart, I had prayed in vain. But one night in a dream I saw in splendor shining, a knight of glorious mien. Tranquilly on me he gazed, and with tender words brought solace to my heart. My guardian, my defender, he shall be; and this prize shall I offer to him whom heaven shall send: my lands, my crown, my heart.
Prelude and Love Death, from "Tristan
and Isolde"..........Richard Wagner
Wagner himself prefaced an explanatory note to be used when the Prelude was linked with Isolde's death song for concert performance. It is interesting to note that he gives the title, "Liebestod," not to the Finale but to the Prelude --designating the Finale merely as "Transfiguration." The description which follows was used on a program given in Vienna and conducted by Wagner, December 27, 1863:
Tristan as bridal envoy conducts Isolde to his uncle, the King. They love each other. From the first stifled moan of quenchless longing, from the faintest tremor to
unpent avowal of a hopeless love, the heart goest through each phase of unvictorious battling with its inner fever, till, swooning back upon itself, it seems extinguished as in death.
Yet, what Fate divided for this life, in death revives transfigured: the gate of union opens. Above the corpse of Tristan, dying Isolde sees transcend.ent consummation of their passionate desire, eternal union in unmeasured realms, nor bond nor barrier, indivisible!
No one in our generation of music critics has so beautifully and effectively put into words the significance of Wagner's music as Lawrence Gilman, whose description of these excerpts follows:
Tristan is unique not only among Wagner's works, but among all outgivings of the musical mind, because it is devoted, with an exclusiveness and concentration beyond parallel, to the rendering of emotional substances. This is the stuff of life itself; the timeless human web of desire and grief, sorrow and despair and ecstasy.
In this Prelude and its companion piece, the "Liebestod," Wagner is at the summit of his genius. The terrible disquiet of the first, the "high, immortal, proud regret" of the second, its dying fires, its mood of luminous reconciliation, have called forth the greatest that he could give. In the prelude he has uttered, once and for all, the inappeasable hunger of the human heart for that which is not and never can be--not merely and grossly the desire of animal for animal; and in the death song of Isolde he has prisoned forever that ancient wonderment of seers and poets at "the idleness of tears." He has steeped this sovereign in music, with its immemorial pain and its soaring exaltation, in a tragic beauty so suffusing and transfiguring that our possession of it is needlessly renewed.
For Tristan, like all excelling masterworks, becomes at every hearing a revival in the deeper sense, a thing as modern as tomorrow's dawn. "In great art are not only the hopes men set their hearts upon," wrote a sensitive student of imaginative values, "but also their fulfillment. For posterity, the passion of an age lives principally as a preparation for its poetry. And where but in poetry is the consummation Where is to be found Dante's Paradise Where, in all reason and sufficiency, but in Dante!" And where is to be found that paradise of the dreaming mind and the desirous will toward which Wagner agonized through all his life--where, but in this insuperable song
Like Blake, Wagner in his greatest score transfigured the living flesh, bending his fiery gaze upon it until it became translucent, and he saw through it immortal, incandescent shapes, immortal patterns--"holy garments for glory and for beauty."
Wagner reached the very peak of his artistic maturity in "The Ring." f Here he towered to the sublime and reached one of the summits of human
William Ashton Ellis' translation (Life of Richard Wagner, Vol VI). The German text appears in the Sammtliche Schrijten und Dichtungen (Vol. 12).
t The composition of the four "Ring" dramas extends over a period of about twenty years. The words were printed in entirety in 1853; music sketches of "Siegfried" (the first one written) were begun in 1854, and the whole series finished in 1874. "Tristan und Isolde" and "Die Meistersinger" were written during this period.
inspiration. Nothing else in music evidences such a tremendous sweep of imagination, such a completely comprehensive conception, so unparalleled an integration of divergent elements, and such an overwhelming richness of effect. In the words of Lawrence Gilman:
There is no such example of sustained and vitalized creative thinking as "The Ring" in music or in any other art. This vast projection of the creative vision and the proponent will; this four-part epic in drama and in tones whose progress unfolds a cosmic parable of nature and destiny and gods and demigods and men; which begins in the ancient river's depths and ends in the flaming heavens that consume Valhalla's deities and bring the promise of a new day of enlightened generosity and reconciliatory love--this was a work without precedent or pattern. No one before had dreamed of creating a dramatic symphony lasting fourteen hours, organized and integrated and coherent. Only a fanatically daring brain and imagination, only a lunatic or genius, could have projected such a thing; only a superman could have accomplished it.
The following descriptions are by Lawrence Gilman:
GOTTERDAMMERUNG Siegfried's Rhine Journey
Siegfried and Briinnhilde have dwelt for a while in Briinnhilde's mountain retreat; and now, in the second episode of the Prologue of "Gotterdammerung," Briinnhilde is about to send the hero forth to new deeds of glory, after having endowed him with all the wisdom that she had acquired from the gods. The stage-setting is that of the Third Act of "Die Walkiire" of the Finale of "Siegfried," and of the preceding scene of "Gotterdammerung": the summit of the Valkyrie's rock. Day dawns, and as the red glow in the sky waxes, Loge's guarding fires grow fainter and fainter. When the daily miracle is accomplished in the East, Siegfried and Briinnhilde enter from the cave, the hero in full armor. Briinnhilde urges him forth to fresh exploits. They exchange vows, and Siegfried acquires from his bride her warhorse, "Grane," in exchange for the curse-bearing Ring; whereupon the hero begins his Rhine-journey, to experience love of another kind, and black betrayal, and a murderous end. Briinnhilde watches from the cliff as Siegfried disappears down the mountainside. From afar in the valley comes the sound of his horn. As the curtains close, Wagner's orchestra passes into an extended interlude, which connects the Prologue with Act I of "Gotterdammerung." This magnificent tonal epic, descriptive of Siegfried's Rhine-journey, is derived from a combination of certain among the chief themes of the Tetralogy--Siegfried's horn call, the motive of Love's Resolution, Loge, The Rhine, the Song of the Rhine-maidens, the Ring, Renunciation, the Rheingold, and Servitude.
?Lawrence Gilman, Wagner's Operas. New York: Farrar and Rinehart, 1937. [50]
Siegfried's Funeral March
In the second scene of Act III, Siegfried, resting in the woods with the assembled huntsmen--Gunther and Hagen and the vassals---relates to them the tale of his life and adventures. As his narrative approaches its end, Hagen interrupts the hero to press upon him a horn of wine in which he has mixed a magic brew that will remove from Siegfried's mind the cloud that has obscured his memory of Brunnhilde. Siegfried resumes his marvelous tale, describing with gusto his pursuit of the guiding ForestBird, his finding of Brunnhilde on the flame-girded mountain-top, and his waking of the enchanted sleeper by his kiss. As he reaches this exultant climax, two ravens fly up from a bush, and Hagen asks him, "Canst read the speech of these ravens, too" As Siegfried turns to look after them, Hagen thrusts his spear into the hero's back. Siegfried attempts to crush Hagen with his shield, but his strength leaves him, and he falls backward, like the crashing to earth of some towering forest tree. The vassals, who have tried vainly to restrain Hagen, ask in horror what this deed is that he has done; and Gunther echoes their question. "Vengeance for a broken oath!" answers Hagen, as he turns callously away and strides out of sight. Then the stricken hero, supported by two of the vassals, raises himself slightly, opens his eyes, and sings his last greeting to Brunnhilde.
Siegfried sinks back and dies; and for a few moments the stricken vassals and warriors gathered about him in the darkening woods stand speechless beside the silent figure stretched on its great war-shield. Then, at a gesture from Gunther, the vassals lift the shield with its incredible burden upon their shoulders and bear it in solemn procession over the heights, hidden at last by the mists that rise from the river, while the mightiest death-song ever chanted for a son of earth ascends from the instrumental choir.
This is no music of mortal lamentation. It is rather a paean, a tonal glorification. "There is grief for the hero's passing, and there is awe at the catastrophe. But the grief is mixed with thoughts of the high estate into which the chosen one has entered, and the awe is turned to exultation. For a Valkyr will kiss away his wounds, and Wotan will make place for him at his board among the warriors."
Brunnhilde: Immolation and Closing Scene
This great scene, the finale of "Gotterdammerung," reveals Wagner at his greatest as a musico-dramatic artist, and nowhere has he reached more exalted heights than in the closing scene of this tremendous music drama.
The setting is that of the third scene of Act III of "Gotterdammerung"--the Hall of the Gibichungs beside the Rhine (as in Act I). It is night; the moonlight is reflected in the river. The body of the murdered Siegfried lies on its bier in the center of the hall. Gunther, too, is dead, slain in his struggle with Hagen for the Ring; and Hagen has been cowed by the threatening, supernatural gesture of Siegfried's
upraised hand as he tried to seize the Ring from the dead hero's finger. In that moment of subduing horror, Briinnhilde, veiled and sovereign, no longer wholly of this world, advances with quiet and tragical solemnity from the back. Reflection and revelation have made clear to her the whole vast tangle of fate and sin and retribution that enmesh them all. Pitifully, she rebukes the bitter and wailing Gutrune. Then, after gazing long upon Siegfried's body, she turns to the awe-struck vassals, and orders them to build a funeral pyre by the river's edge and to kindle thereon a towering fire that shall consume the dead hero and herself.
As the vassals erect the funeral pyre in front of the hall, beside the Rhine, Briinnhilde begins that matchless valedictory, overwhelming in its utterance of grief and reproach and prophecy and lofty dedication, which is the dramatic and musical culmination of the whole Tetralogy. It is a farewell to earth and earthly love and all felicity beside which every other leave-taking in poetry or drama seems dwarfed and limited. But it is also an implied foreshadowing of the new order, the new day of love and justice, which is to succeed the twilight of the gods and the night of their destruction. Briinnhilde's vision is that of a seeress discerning a regenerate world of love and equity; and she prepares to join her dead hero on the pyre in order that she may fulfill the last necessity which shall make that vision a reality.
She draws the Ring from Siegfried's finger, and puts it upon her own, to be recovered from her ashes by the waiting river and the Rhine-daughters, who will cherish forever the cleansed and purified gold. She turns toward the back, where Siegfried's body has already been laid upon the flower-strewn pyre. She seizes a great firebrand from one of the staring vassals, and hurls it among the logs, which break into sudden flame. Two -young men bring forward her horse. She goes to it, quickly unbridles it, bends to it affectionately, addresses it. In rising ecstasy, she cries aloud their joint greeting to the dead Siegfried, swings herself onto Grane's back, and together they leap into the flames.
The fire blazes up, filling the whole space before the hall, as the terrified men and women crowd toward the back. The Rhine overflows, and the Rhine-maidens are seen swimming forward. Hagen plunges into the flood, and is drawn beneath the surface by two of the Nixies as the Curse motive is thundered out by three unison trombones. Flosshilde displays exultantly the recovered Ring. The Valhalla theme is chanted with tragic portent by the brass, and high in the violins and flutes the motive of "Redemption Through Love" soars above the wreckage of cupidity and the selfish pride of gods. As the hall falls in ruins, an increasing glow in the heavens reveals the doomed Valhalla, the gods and heroes seated within. Flames seize the castle of those who were once so mighty and so ruthless and so proud; and in the orchestra, a final transfigured repetition of the motive of Redeeming Love tells us of the passing of the old order and the coming of a new.
An English translation of Briinnhilde's words and Wagner's stage direction follows:
(Alone in the center of the stage; after she has for a long while, at first with a deep shudder, then with almost overpowering sadness, contemplated Siegfried's face, she turns with solemn exaltation to the men and women.)
Build me with logs, aloft on its brim a heap for the Rhine to heed; high and bright kindle the flame; let its fiery tongue the highest hero consume!
His horse guide to my hand, to be gone with me to his master;
for to share the hero's
highest honor my body madly burns. Fulfill Briinnhilde's command!
(The younger men raise a great funeral pyre in front of the hall, near the bank of the Rhine; women dress it with hangings on which they strew herbs and flowers. Briinnhilde, who has again been lost in contemplation of the dead Siegfried, is gradually transfigured by an expression of increasing tenderness.)
Like glorious sunshine
he sends me his light; his soul was faultless that false I found! His bride he betrayed by truth to his friendship: from his best and dearest only beloved one,
barred was he by his sword-Sounder than his, are oaths not sworn with; better than his
held never are bargains; holier than his, love is unreard of: and yet to all oaths, to every bargain, to faithfulest love,
none has been so untrue!
Know you how it was so Oh ye, who heed our oaths in your heaven,
open your eyes
on my fullness of woe, and watch your unwithering blame!
For my summons hark,
thou highest god! Him, by his daringest deed-that filled so deftly thy hope,
darkly thy means
doomed in its midst to ruin's merciless wrong;
me to betray he was bounden, that wise a woman might grow! Know I not now, what thou wouldst
All things, all things
All 1 now know:
Nought is hidden; all is clear to me here!
Fitly thy ravens
take to their pinions; with tidings feared and hoped for, hence to their home they shall go. Rest thee, rest thee, O god!
(She signs to the men to lift Siegfried's body and bear it to the funeral pyre: at the same time she draws the ring from Siegfried's finger, contemplates it during what follows, and at last puts it on her finger.)
My heritage,
behold me hallow!-Thou guilty ring!
Ruinous gold!
My hand gathers,
and gives thee again.
You wisely seeing
the Rhine's unresting daughters, I deem your word was of weight!
All that you ask
now is your own;
here from my ashes
now you may have it!-The flame as it clasps me round, frees from its curse the ring!-Back to its gold
return it again,
and far in the flood
withhold its fire, the Rhine's unslumbering sun, that once you lost to your bane.
(She turns toward the back, where Siegfried's body lies already on the pyre, and seizes a great firebrand from one of the vassals.)
Away, you ravens! Whisper to your master what here among us you heard!
By Briinnhilde's rock
Your road shall be bent;
who roars yet around it,
Loge--send him to Valhall! For with doom of gods is darkened the day;
so--set I the torch
to Valhall's towering walls!
(She flings the brand into the heap of wood, which quickly blazes up. Two ravens have flown up from the bank and disappear toward the background. Two young men bring in the horse; Briinnhilde seizes and quickly unbridles it.)
Grane, my horse, hail to thee here! Knowest thou, friend, how far I shall need thee Behold how brightens hither thy lord, Siegfried--my sorrowless hero. To go to him now neigh'st thou so gladly Lure thee to him the light and the laughter -Feel how my bosom
fills with its blaze! Hands of fire hold me at heart; my master enfolding, held fast in his arms, in love everlasting, made one with my own! Heiaho! Grane! Greeting to him!
Siegfried! Behold!
Blissfully hails thee thy bride!
(She has swung herself stormily on to the horse and rides it with a leap into the burning pyre.)
Saturday Afternoon, May 9
"The Isle of the Dead," Symphonic Poem, after
Bocklin, Op. 29........Sergei Rachmaninoff
Sergei Rachmaninoff was born April i, 1873, in Onega, Government of Novgorod.
Arnold Bocklin's "Die Toteninsel" was inspired by the somber beauty of the Mediterranean coast line. The island in this picture is one of the Ponza group just north of the Bay of Naples. Although some of these islands are inhabited, others are gaunt masses of rock whose ledges shoot forth blue-green cypress trees, and where no sound seems to have ever disturbed their deathlike solemnity. Such an island is pictured in Bocklin's "The Isle of the Dead." Remote and forgotten it lies, in a still sea, where no cry of bird or sound of of voice is heard. A boat drifts into a nook hidden among the towering cypress. A white and quiet figure dwarfed by the giant rocks of the island stands at the prow of the boat before a coffin.
Sergei Rachmaninoff, the last of the Titans in musical romanticism, carrying to an epic climax the soul-life of his country and his epoch with its rich despair of man's struggle against a relentless destiny, created in his music a dramatic parallel to the somber beauty and brooding melancholy that comes to us through the dark hues and mysterious shadows of Bocklin's picture. The mutual affinity between Rachmaninoff's music and Bocklin's art is obvious and natural. The complete desolation and fatalism caught by the artist permeates the music of Rachmaninoff's tone poem throughout. The music deepens the spiritual gloom and the fatalistic impression of the picture by embodying in sound those abstract qualities which the forms and colors of the picture particularize.
Rachmaninoff's instinctive artistry and his impeccable taste as a musician save him here, as in his setting to Poe's "The Bells," from the pitfalls that have often proved fatal to composers with less musical integrity. Avoiding the danger of submitting the art of music to the indignity of merely serving pictorial suggestions, he seldom makes any attempts at realism, but rather, by means of an
?Arnold Bocklin was a Swiss painter born in Basel, October 16, 1827. He spent most of his life in Rome, Munich, Zurich, and Florence, where he died on January 16, 1901. His paintings inspired several composers. Felix Weingartner composed a symphonic poem on his picture, "Elysian Fields"; and Max Reger's "Four Tone Poems" were written after "The Isle of the Dead," "The Hermit Fiddling before the Statue of the Madonna," "Sports of Waves," and "Bacchanale."
almost endless variety of combinations of orchestral instruments in new and varied rhythmic and harmonic effects, suggests, not the details of the picture,
but the poetic idea behind it-------the inexorable force of Death, its mystery, its
terror, and its reconciling peace. By so doing he keeps the art of music in the shadowy sphere of the abstract and does not limit its unique expressiveness.
Oskar von Riesemann gives the following description of Rachmaninoff's work:
The Symphonic Poem, "The Isle of the Dead," closes the group of Dresden works--all of which are preoccupied with the question of life and death--with Bocklin's vision of the rocky island overgrown with cypress-trees and radiating eternal peace. Musical history does not show many pictorial compositions. It will always be a bold venture to try to reproduce the static visual impression by means of the dynamic interplay of sounds. But if anyone has ever succeeded it is Rachmaninoff with his "The Isle of the Dead." Already the first motive of five notes, given out by harp and violoncellos, is full of suggestive power: it ripples as monotonously as the leaden waters stirred by Charon's boat, and gradually and irresistibly draws and holds the listener into an imaginary world revolving about death, and dissolution, tranquillity and oblivion, and surrenders him unconditionally to the uncanny, yet fascinating mood induced by such an atmosphere. It is natural that in this picture, which, like the symphony, is masterfully orchestrated, there should be a preponderance of melancholy, oppressive, shadowy colouring which is, after all, Rachmaninoff's specialty. Unique in effect is the passage where the old liturgic melody of the Dies Irae pierces the gloom of the orchestra in a tremolo from the violas, like a shuddering premonition of death.
Symphonic Dances, Op. 45.....Sergei Rachmaninoff
The Symphonic Dances were written during the summer and autumn of 1940 at Rachmaninoff's home in Huntington, Long Island, and it is the first score of this distinguished Russian composer's to be written in America. The first performance took place in Philadelphia, January 3, 1941; and since then its performances by the Cleveland Symphony in concert and on radio have aroused enthusiastic response from audiences throughout the country.
Originally, the three sections were to be titled "Midday," "Twilight," and "Midnight," but later they were left to create their impressions unhampered by literary designations.
Other outstanding instances of compositions which owe their origin to the inspiration derived from particular paintings are "Pictures at an Exposition" in which Moussorgsky attempted to translate into tone a series of art works by the Russian painter Victor Hartmann; the early French impressionistic works which sought direct inspiration through the pictures of Degas, Manet, and Monet; and recently, "Mathis der Maler" (Matthias the Painter) by Hindemith, in which he attempts to catch the feelings that were aroused by looking at the "Isenheim Altar" painted by Matthias of Gruenewald, a German painter who lived at the end of the fifteenth century.
First Dance (Non allegro, 4-4). This movement is cast in a simple threepart form. The first section is announced fragmentarily in solo woodwind instruments, with a string background. Suddenly, the whole orchestra bursts forth with the fully stated theme which thereafter receives ingenious development. The second section presents a digressing theme, the figure of which is closely related to the main subject in the first section and heard in the alto saxophone and in the accompanying solo clarinet. Section one returns, and the movement ends on a poised coda, in which the original figure from which the movement originated is faintly heard.
Second Dance (Andante con moto, 6-8 and 9-8). The second movement is a waltz introduced by muted horns and trumpets and later heard in the English horn. After much elaboration, a contrasting section, as in the first movement, makes great use of the woodwind section. The waltz theme returns in the traditional da cafo of the first section.
Third Dance (Allegro vivace, 9-8 and 6-8). The third movement is introduced by a brief slow section. The dance is bold, exciting and climactic, with its wild syncopations and brilliant orchestral colors. There is a definite American dance music idiom to be noted here. Perhaps Rachmaninoff, in his first score written in our land, has touched his finger to the pulse of America.
Concerto for Piano No. 2, in C minor,
Op. 18..........Sergei Rachmaninoff
After the complete failure of his "First Symphony" at St. Petersburg, Rachmaninoff wrote in his memoirs:
I returned to Moscow a changed man. My confidence in myself had received a sudden blow. Agonizing hours spent in doubt and hard thinking had brought me to the conclusion that I ought to give up composing. I was obviously unfitted to it, and therefore it would be better if I made an end to it at once.
I gave up my room and returned to the Satins.f A paralysing apathy possessed me. I did nothing at all and found no pleasure in anything. Half my days were spent lying on a couch and sighing over my ruined life. My only occupation consisted of a few piano lessons which I was forced to give in order to keep myself alive. This condition, which was as tiresome for myself as for those about me, lasted more than a year.
Rachmaninoff's Recollections. New York: The Macmillan Co., 1934. English translation by Mrs. O. Rutherford.
t The Satins were close friends of the composer. On April 28, 1902, he married Nathalie Satin.
I did not live; I vegetated, idle and hopeless. The thought of spending my life as a piano-teacher gave me cold shudders. But what other activity was there left for me Once or twice I was asked to play at concerts. I did this and had some success. But of what use was it to me The opportunities to appear at concerts came my way so seldom that I could not rely upon them as a material foundation for my existence. Nor could I hope that the Conservatoire would offer me a situation as a pianoforte teacher.
In 1898, he had great success in London conducting and playing the piano, but continued to remain in a depressed mental state. In 1900 the Satins sent him to a psychiatrist by the name of Dr. N. Dahl.
My relations had told Dr. Dahl that he must at all costs cure me of my apathetic condition and achieve such results that I would again begin to compose. Dahl had asked what manner of composition they desired and had received the answer, "A concerto for pianoforte," for this I had promised to the people in London and had given it up in despair. Consequently I heard the same hypnotic formula repeated day after day while I lay half asleep in an armchair in Dahl's study. "You will begin to write your concerto. . . . You will work with great facility. . . . The concerto will be of an excellent quality. . . ." It was always the same, without interruption. Although it may sound incredible, this cure really helped me. Already at the beginning of the summer I began again to compose. The material grew in bulk, and new musical ideas began to stir within me--far more than I needed for my concerto. By the autumn I had finished two movements of the concerto--the Andante and the Finale--and a sketch for a suite for two pianofortes whose Opus number 17 is explained by the fact that I finished the concerto later by adding the first movement. The two movements of the concerto (Op. 18) I played during the same autumn at a charity concert directed by Siloti. The two movements of my concerto had a gratifying success. This buoyed up my self-confidence so much that I began to compose again with great keenness. By the spring I had already finished the first movement of the concerto and the suite for two pianofortes.
I felt that Dr. Dahl's treatment had strengthened my nervous system to a miraculous degree. Out of gratitude I dedicated my second concerto to him. As the piece had had a great success in Moscow, everyone began to wonder what possible connection it could have had with Dr. Dahl. The truth, however, was known only to Dahl, the Satins, and myself.
First Movement {Moderato, 2-2, C minor). After a few introductory chords for the piano, the first theme is introduced in the strings over arpeggio figures in the piano. The subsidiary theme is then stated by the piano. In the development section the orchestra takes up the first theme and works it up at some length. A recapitulation of the main theme in the strings, accompanied by chords in the brass and a counter subject in the piano, is varied and modified. The subsidiary theme in the recapitulation is sounded in the horns in augmen[58]
tation (time values of the notes lengthened). The coda, or added section, is again based upon the principal subject.
Second Movement {Adagiosostenuto, 4-4). The movement is introduced by sustained chords for strings and wind. The principal theme is given out first in the flute, and then in the clarinet, over an accompaniment in the piano. The piano then states the theme accompanied by arpeggio figures in the clarinets and pizzicato violins. An acceleration leads to a cadenza for the piano. A shortened return of the first part of the movement and a coda in strings and woodwinds brings the movement to a close.
Third Movement {Allegro scherzando, 4-4). The piano states the first subject which receives immediate development. The subsidiary theme is announced in the oboe and 'celli and is then taken up in the piano, following which the first subject is developed further to a fugato treatment as in the second movement. An acceleration in speed and a great crescendo lead to the climax and another cadenza for the piano. The subsidiary theme originally announced by the oboe and 'celli is now sounded by the full orchestra with chords in the piano bringing the Concerto to a brilliant and dramatic finale.
Saturday Evening, May 9
Toccata, Intermezzo, and Fugue in C major......Bach
(Transcribed for orchestra by Eugene Ormandy)
Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Eisenach, March. 21, 1685; he died in Leipzig, July 28, 1750.
"There is no musical field in which Bach is not dominant and indispensable," wrote Charles Sanford Terry. "Music emanated from him with apparent equal ease in all its forms, but not, one is sure, with equal satisfaction. Inadequate material, vocal and instrumental, too often alloyed his pleasure, particularly in the rendering of his larger concerted works. On that account, if for no other, he was happiest at the organ, on which his supreme virtuosity completely expressed his design. Of all others it was the medium most responsive to the emotion that swayed him. In its company he soared in free communion with the high intelligences that inspired him. To it he confided his most intimate thoughts, and could he have foreseen the immortality that posterity bestowed on him, he would undoubtedly have associated it with his favorite instrument."
The Toccata and Fugue in C major dates from the period between 170817, when Bach was employed as court organist to the Duke of Weimar. During these happy years, the young composer, then in his early twenties, acquired all of the details and subtleties of the organ idiom, in which he soon surpassed all of his predecessors and contemporaries.
The Toccata (from the Italian word "toccare," to touch) a conventional and familiar form in Bach's day, was a kind of prelude which offered an opportunity to display the "touch" or execution of the performer. As a form it lacked definition, but like a fantasia, it was improvisatory in its style, and often very showy in character.
As in the case of every other form Bach touched, he likewise transformed the Toccata into a medium of profound expression. In his hands it took on a musical value and architectural firmness quite foreign to it. From an improvisatory, rhapsodic introduction, he gave the Toccata a fullness and completeness of form by passing into a second section, serene and contemplative by contrast, through a transitional passage of great harmonic suspensions, to a telling climax in a highly
Charles Sanford Terry, "Bach," The Historical Approach. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1930.
developed Fugue, where all the brilliant technical devices that can be imagined, retain the spirit of the old Toccata.
Mr. Ormandy's transcription has, with telling effect, made full use of the color possibilities of the modern orchestra.
Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125.....Beethoven
Ludwig von Beethoven was born in Bonn, December 16, 1770; he died in Vienna, March 26, 1827.
Beethoven embodied in his art the true spirit of the French Revolution, which announced to a startled world the breaking up of an old civilization and the beginning of a new social regime. In the true meaning of the words "liberty," "equality," and "fraternity," he found the motivating force that gave sustaining vitality to everything he wrote, from the somber fury of the "Appassionata Sonata," the symbol of early revolt, with its unyielding tension and its sovereign inhumanity, to the Choral Ninth Symphony with its all-embracing affection for mankind so sorely wounded by the violence of revolution and its final outburst of joy at the thought of a better world to come.
This force, this spirit, that infused itself into the music of Beethoven had already driven deep into the minds of men, and had with a shocking suddenness unleashed its fury, leaving in its wake a devastated society and a wreckage of tradition.
When finally its violence was spent and the tension had relaxed, when fears and hatreds were dispelled, a new world seemed to emerge like a phoenix from its ashes, a world bright with hope and full with the promise of benevolence. The ecstasy of relief, the joy of being alive, created a new subject matter for artistic expression.
It was this spirit that drove Beethoven to the creation of a music which his world had not yet even dared to imagine, a music torrential in its passion for freedom, strong in its conviction, deep and moving in its heartfelt compassion, and exuberant at its release from confining tradition.
The outburst of exuberance in Beethoven's music is one of its most striking traits. His opera, "Fidelio," based upon a drama of rescue from oppression and tyranny with its overtures of abounding joy, the gargantuan Scherzi of his symphonies, the overture to Goethe's "Egmont" with its "Symphony of Victory," the overpowering vitality of the finales of his Fifth and Seventh Symphonies, and, finally, the "Ode to Joy" in the Ninth Symphony, are only a few of the many instances that attest the manifestation of this spirit. Beethoven had been
guided by a humanitarian spirit for many years, through the lofty impulses of Goethe, the austere ethics of Kant, the magnanimity of Shakespeare, and the passionate optimism of Schiller, whose poem, "Lied an die Freude" (Ode to Joy) had, from the early years of his creative life, inspired him with the hope that one day he would find a musical expression worthy of the text. Through the written words of these great minds Beethoven had caught a glimpse of a better, freer world, when men would ultimately live together in freedom, equality, and mutual understanding; a world, which, after a century of subsequent torment, we have not been able to realize.
Oscar Wilde once said that a map of the world on which Utopia is not shown is not worth looking at, for it omits a shore on which mankind will always land. Both Schiller and Beethoven saw that shore and marked their courses with abiding confidence that humanity would some day reach it. Schiller's denial of the realities of the past and his vision of the unrealities of the future, his uncompromising idealism, his unlimited and elemental shout to a glorious future in which all mankind would be held in the bond of brotherhood, spoke directly to Beethoven's great heart and strengthened his conviction that man's destiny was to be glorious and fine.
During a period of chaos very much like ours today, Beethoven stood like a colossus, bridging with his mighty grasp the two centuries in which he lived-one which saw devastation, the other, hope based upon that destruction. He embodied the ideas of both the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, becoming the sage of the one and the prophet of the other. Too big and timeless for ordinary classification as a romanticist or a classicist, he created epoch-making masterpieces based upon firm foundations of the past, liberated, however, from all confining elements of tradition and set free to discover new regions of unimagined beauty.
The Herculean reach of his conceptions, the sovereignty of their expression, and the constant search for new methods, new techniques, the stretching of existing forms to an unheard-of degree, his dramatic success in seeking a harmonious embodiment of opposing forces by fusing them into a great architectural oneness, gives the impression that a daemonic force was working through his brain, and directing the bold strokes of his pen.
Of all Beethoven's concrete contributions to the art of music, the most powerful and original were: the treatment he gave the first movement form, so full of titanic and elemental struggle; the tumultuous humor and elfin wit, the
The intention of utilizingSchiller's "Ode" dates from the year 1793. The text occurs again in a sketchbook of 1798; some of it is intermingled with sketches for the Seventh and Eighth Symphonies made in 1811, and from this time on references to it occur with ever-increasing frequency.
bacchanalian exultation of the great Scherzi; the mystic and ethereal lyricism of the incomparable adagio movements, and the amazing musical architecture found in the variation form.
The Choral Ninth Symphony in all its movements reveals mature and culminative treatment of all of these innovations. The originality in Beethoven's music is due in the last analysis to the fact that he thought more deeply, that he was moved more profoundly by life and by an ideal of life than his predecessors; and that his music represented that deeper and more profound thought sublimated into broader conceptions of musical form and technique.
Beethoven completed his Eighth Symphony in 1812, and for eleven years no other symphony came from his pen. In a sketchbook of the year 1816, however, are to be found passages which later became subjects for the first movement and the Scherzo of the Choral Symphony.
The actual composition was begun in 1817, the sketches for that year being again confined to the first movement and the Scherzo. In 1818, Beethoven conceived the idea of writing twin symphonies, and in a sketchbook of that year he made the following memorandum:
"Adagio Continue": Sacred song in a symphony in an old mode (We praise Thee, O God--Alleluia), either to stand alone, or as introduction to a fugue. The whole Second Symphony to be based perhaps on its melody. The singing voices enter in the last piece, or as early as the adagio, repeated in a certain manner in the last piece, the singing voices being first introduced little by little. In the adagio the text of a Greek myth "Cantique Ecclesiastique" in the allegro, festival of Bacchus.
The Ninth Symphony was the result of the merging of these two ideas, when at last, in the vortex of Beethoven's mind, eruptions and mystic amalgamation took place, and fragmentary ideas submitted to his imperial reason, and were fashioned by his powerful hand into a single monumental form.
The question of Beethoven's success in writing the Choral Finale to this great symphony has been in the minds of musical critics for a long period. It is no longer arrogance or sacrilege to question his judgment in writing it. Critical opinion today considers that it was ill-advised, and that it plays the iconoclast in a temple. The fatal mistake of the Choral Finale was the attempt to mix poetry, the concrete and finite, with music, the abstract and infinite, in equal proportions. Music might be inspired by, but should not be dependent upon, the subject of a poem. This being a symphony, the chief source of expression is musical and not poetic, and the greatest, the most unique and complete expression is found when the composer, freed from the finite meaning of words, gives fervent and eloquent expression through the art of music alone. Schiller's "Ode" served Beethoven well by inspiring him to some of the most glorious music he
ever wrote, but when he actually harnessed his tones to Schiller's lines, he stopped their flight and dragged them down from the "cloud-capped peaks" of the first three movements, to a "humiliating and belittling concreteness."
Beethoven himself became conscious of the temporary rejection of his art. Czerny told Jahn that after the first performance Beethoven emphatically declared he was dissatisfied with the "Hymn to Joy" and wished to write another movement without vocal parts, to take the place of this failure. Unfortunately for posterity Beethoven failed to carry out his intention.
In addition to this fundamental error, Beethoven could not write for the voice, and failed completely to realize the potential expressive beauty that lies in the proper treatment of it as a unique instrument. Thinking almost entirely in terms of the orchestra, he grew impatient with its limitations. His ruthless treatment of the voices in the "Hymn to Joy" invariably turns legitimate singing into unholy screeching. Having forced the human instrument entirely out of its sphere, the music given to it loses all real expressive quality; and, as a result, much of it in the finale is oppressively trivial and even unforgivably dull.
Wagner was not unmindful of the fact that, without words, Beethoven might have soared to the heights he sought in the first three movements, and he reminds us that the great theme of this movement first presented itself to us unburdened by words:
"Thus we find the master still abiding in the realm of the world's idea," he writes,f "f°r it ls not the meaning of the word that really takes us with his entry of the human voice--neither is it the thought expressed in Schiller's verses that occupies our minds thereafter, but the familiar sound of the choral chant. It is obvious especially with the chief melody proper, that Schiller's words have been built in perforce and with no great skill, for this melody had first unrolled its breadth before us as an entity per se, entrusted to the instruments alone, and there had thrilled us with the nameless joy of paradise regained."
Wagner's astute critical mind has sensed the real reason for Beethoven's failure at the end of the Finale--his attempt to achieve a fuller meaning by joining poetry with music in equal proportions; and he has revealed the only, and
Traces of the "joy theme" can be found scattered throughout Beethoven's work for over a period of thirty years. It occurred in the first part of a song-, "Senfzer eines Ungeliebten und Gegenliebe" composed about 1795, and again in a setting of Liedge's poem "An die Hoffnung," made in 1805, to the words "Freude schoner Gottes Funken." It is appropriate that the joy movement in the Ninth Symphony should have grown out of a song about hope. The motive appears again in a little song written in 1810, "Mit einem gemalten Band."
tW. A. Ellis (ed.), Richard Wagner's Prose Works, Vol. V, p. 102.
everlasting, source of Beethoven's powerful expression--an unadulterated, selfsufficient, and transcendent music.
Whatever this music means to each individual who hears it is beyond knowing, but to a world again torn asunder by war, to a world seething with national and racial hatreds, to a joyless world, this great culmination to Beethoven's creature life speaks perhaps with greater significance than ever before. It offers a renewed faith in the essential goodness of man and a new realization of his inherent nobility of mind. But it does more than this, it re-echoes the cry that has been heard down through the ages, and that has always arisen from the deepest impulses of mankind whenever those impulses have been thwarted or suppressed by tyranny, the cry for a world in which liberty, equality, and fraternity, the complex of the true democratic ideal, shall reign supreme, and all repression, hatred, and lust for power shall have disappeared from the face of the earth. This is the ideal for which men have fought and died in centuries past and are fighting and dying for today. But Beethoven lived for this ideal and by this ideal he wrote a music that has, and will, survive all wars and revolutions. Beethoven's map of the world still shows a Utopian shore, and furthermore, it charts the course by which mankind may some day reach it.
Following is the text of the Choral Finale--English version by Natalia Macfarren:
Baritone Recitative
O friends, no more these sounds continue! Let us raise a song of sympathy, of gladness. O Joy, let us praise thee!
Baritone Solo, Quartet, and Chorus Allegro assai, D major, 4-4
Praise to J07, the God-descended
Daughter of Elysium! Ray of mirth and rapture blended,
Goddess, to thy shrine we come. By thy magic is united
What stern Custom parted wide, All mankind are brothers plighted
Where thy gentle wings abide.
?London: Novello and Co., Ltd.; New York: H. W. Gray Co., Agents.
Ye to whom the boon is measured,
Friend to be of faithful friend, Who a wife has won and treasured,
To our strain your voices lend! Yea, if any hold in keeping
Only one heart all his own, Let him join us, or else weeping,
Steal from out our midst, unknown.
Draughts of joy, from cup o'erflowing,
Bounteous Nature freely gives Grace to just and unjust showing,
Blessing everything that lives. Wine she gave to us and kisses,
Loyal friend on life's steep road, E'en the worm can feel life's blisses,
And the Seraph dwells with God.
Tenor Solo and Chorus
Ulegro assai vivace, alia marcia, B-flat major, 6-8 Glad as the suns His will sent plying Through the vast abyss of space, Brothers, run your joyous race, Hero-like to conquest flying.
Praise to Joy, the God-descended
Daughter of Elysium! Ray of mirth and rapture blended,
Goddess, to thy shrine we come. By thy magic is united
What stern Custom parted wide, All mankind are brothers plighted
Where thy gentle wings abide.
Andante maestoso, G major, 3-2 O ye millions, I embrace ye! Here's a joyful kiss for all! Brothers, o'er yon starry sphere Surely dwells a loving Father.
Adagio ma non troppo, ma divoto, G minor, 3-2 O ye millions, kneel before Him, World, dost feel thy Maker near Seek Him o'er yon starry sphere, O'er the stars enthroned, adore Him!
Chorus Allegro energico, sempre ben marcato, D major, 6-4
"Praise to Joy, the God-descended Daughter of Elysium" etc.
"O ye millions, I embrace ye! Here's a joyful kiss for all!" etc.
O ye millions, kneel before Him, World, dost feel thy Maker near Seek Him, o'er yon starry sphere.
Brothers! Brothers!
O'er the stars enthroned, adore Him!
Quartet and Chorus Allegro ma non tanto, D major, 2-2; Poco adagio
Joy, thou daughter of Elysium,
By thy magic is united What stern Custom parted wide.
All mankind are brothers plighted Where thy gentle wings abide.
Prestissimo, D major, 2-2 "O ye millions, I embrace ye!" etc.
Founded in 1879
Sixty-third Season, 1941-1942
Thor Johnson, Conductor John Wheeler, Accompanist Leonard Gregory, Librarian
Camilla Ayers Marian Bailies Doris Ball Marian Batchelor Ellen Bates Doris Bazant Jacqueline Bear Hannah Belcher Aveline Bowman Lola Bradstreet Frances Capps Lois Clinton Josephine Cole Marian Dingle Stephney Doranchak Dorothy Dubuisson Margaret Emery Eunice Funkhouser Helen Gadberry Shirley Gale Marilyn Goldberg Marjorie Gould Betty-Rae Hileman
Dorothy Amendt Mary Blanchard Margaret Bowman Suzanne Chilman Marion Chown Jean Cox
Ellen Hooper Jean Hubbard Janet Hummon Florence Jaaksi Betty-Lou James Alwilda Kelly Mary Leighton Ruth Lofgren Marjorie Lovejoy Phyllis Lovejoy Helen MacLaren Margaret Martin Katherine Miller Jean Mitchell Florence Morehouse Jo Anne Morris Dorothy Munro Roberta Munro Elizabeth Newell Helen Nutting Edna O'Connor Catherine Osborn Lois Parker
Marian Edgar Ellen Edwards Ruth Fritz Jean Gilman Lucile Hankinson Muriel Hull
Beatrice Patton Alice Phelps Harriet Porter Eleanor Rew Ruth Rodenbeck Marilyn Ruch Frances Sacks Freda Sass
Eugenia Schwartzbek Jean Scott Ruth M. Selby Vera Smith Virginia Smith Beverly Stewart Priscilla Stockwell Hazel Stone Merle Taylor Imogcne Tenniswood Ellen Was Virginia White Jane Woltzen Florence Wong Ruth Zuidema
Geraldine James Esther Jewell Ann Louise Kahn Mary Louise Knapp Dorothy Larson Dorothy Loomis
. [69]
Margaret Murphy Eileen Nielsen Ruth Owen Marguerite Palmer Ruth Reinhard Phyllis Robison
Dorothy Ager Anne Alexander Virginia Anderson June Anutta Donna Baisch Edith Brockway Carol Campbell Ruth Clifford Nadillae Cooper Virginia Crall Margaret Deinzer Grace Eager Ruth Engel Anne Eulderink Mary Falcone Betsy Follin Kathryn Foreman Nancy Frank Carolyn Fries Lucille Genuit Frances Gray
Hazel Ayers Maxine Bertucci Marion Beyer Grace Blake Gertrude Bogart Frances Bostwick Betty-Alice Brown Ruth Cleary Eleanor Cresswell Mary Lou Cummings Judith Donnan
Marillyn Schultz Mary Shinkman Joan Stevens Marjorie Taylor Gladys Teaboldt Marion Teclu Marion Thompson
Nancy Groberg Leanor Grossman Helen Harris Marjorie Hollis Mary Hummon Ruth Ives Marian Leininger Betty Likely Wilma Loeffler Florence McCracken Jeannette McCurdy Glenn McDaniel Gwendolyn McKinley Elizabeth McOmber Marjorie Mellott Miriam Mellott Irene Mendelsohn Viola Modlin Dorothy Morton Helen Parlin
Monna Heath Esther Hibbard Rita Hyman Elizabeth Ivanoff Mary Lowery Norma Malmros Grace Miller Laura Mohrman Violet Oulbegian Virginia Phelps Betty Pratt
Grace Tupper Marian Verwys Ruth Vogel Ruth Wehner Elizabeth Wilson Margaret Wright
Mary Parrish Janet Peterson Henrietta Poppen Elinor Porter Erma Reany Ann Rice Mary Romig Era Rose Aline Ross Elizabeth Rundell Mary Schneyer Rosemary Smith Evelyn Spamer Lynette Spath Ruth Van Natter Mae Waggoner Bettyanne Wall Jean Westerman Dorothy Wiedman Louise Wiedman Helen Zeeb
Betty Rosa Margot Schlesinger Famee Shisler Thelma Shook Mary Snedecor Martha Van Arnam Catherine Wienert Betty Wilson Hadassah Yanich Marguerite Zumstein
Robert Burgan Verne Bidlack Charles Brockway W. Paul Converso Peter Dejong John Eidson
Joseph Barber Joseph Carlebach John Dexter Albert Engstrom Arch H. Hall
George Ablin Gene Beatty James Boult Jack Burton Eugene Bychinsky William Clark Norman Colbath John Crandell Marshall Crouch C. Hobart Edgren Julian Frederick
Eugene Andrie John Belknap John Coons Gilbert Deibel Ted Evans
Allen Hamilton Robert Hamilton Charles Matheson Anthony Mignery James Osburn Lewis Pankaskie
SECOND TENORS Charles Killin Noah Knepper Richard Koch Homer Marple Robert Martin
FIRST BASSES Charles Fries Stuart Gould Harry Hansen Ed Hascall Roger Hazard Clair Heatley Theodore Hildebrandt Leo Imperi Glen Kring Edwin Kruth Lowell Loeffler Philip Malpas
SECOND BASSES Roger Goodwin Earle Harris Arno Heyn Dudley Howe Louis Hurd
Chandler Parker Laurence Reynolds Albert Richards Kenneth Rhoads Thomas Shuler
Gilbert McWethy Andrew Minor Alfred Sukey Corwin Van Husen Rex Wilder
Herbert Mauch Woodrow Ohlsen Irving Ralph Wilfred Roberts D. Richard Stewart James Terrell John Theiler William Trezise Caleb Warner John Wheeler Milan Yancich
James Merrill Donald Plott John Redfield Stan Summers
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor Saul Caston, Associate Conductor Harl McDonald, Manager Louis A. Mattson, Assistant Manager
Alexander Hilsberg, Concertmaster
David Madison,
Asst. Concertmaster
Alfred Lorenz,
Asst. Concertmaster
Alexander Zenker Dayton M. Henry Harry Aleinikoff Jasha Simkin Henry Schmidt Israel Siekierka Arthur B. Lipkin Yasha KayaloE George Beimel David Cohen Louis Gesensway Julius Schulman Frederick Vogelgesang Allan Farnham Sol Ruden John W. Molloy A. Gorodetzky Benjamin Sharlip Domenico Bove Meyer Simkin S. Dabrowski Max Zalstein Anthony Zungolo Schima Kaufman Lois Putlitz Frank Costanzo Manuel Roth Paul C. Shure
Matthew J. Mueller Emil Kresse
Samuel Lifschey Samuel Roens Leonard Mogill Paul Ferguson Wm. S. Greenberg Gordon Kahn Simon Asin J. K. Bauer Gabriel Braverman Alexander Gray Gustave A. Loeben Sam Singer
VIOLONCELLOS Samuel H. Mayes { Benar Heifetz j Soli B. Gusikoff William A. Schmidt Samuel Belenko Emmet R. Sargeant Adrian Siegel Elsa Hilger Harry Gorodetzer Morris Lewin J. Sterin form Gray
BASSES Anton Torello A. Hase
Vincent Lazzaro, Jr. Heinrich. Wiemann Max Strassenberger
M. Pauli S. Siani
Waldemar Giese Carl Torello William Torello
Lynne Wainwright Reba Robinson
FLUTES W. M. Kincaid Albert Tipton Harold Bennett John A. Fischer
Marcel Tabuteau Louis Di Fulvio
John Minsker
CLARINETS Bernard Portnoy Jules J. Serpentini N. Cerminara Leon Lester William Gruner
Sol Schoenbach John Fisnar F. Del Negro William Gruner
Clarence Mayer Ward O. Fearn Theodore Seder A. A. Tomei Anton Horner James Chambers Mason Jones Herbert Pierson
Saul Caston Sigmund Hering Harold W. Rehrig Melvin Headman
Charles Gusikoff
TROMBONES Charles Gusikoff Gordon M. Pulis Paul P. Lotz William Gibson C. E. Gerhard
Philip A. Donatelli Heinrich Wiemann
TYMPANI Oscar Schwar Emil Kresse
BATTERY Benjamin Podemski James Valerio
CELESTA AND PIANO Frederick Vogelgesang Gustave A. Loeben Joseph S. Levine
EUPHONIUM Charles Gusikoff
LIBRARIAN Marshall Betz
On leave--in U.S. Service.
Organized in 1879. Incorporated in 1881.
Henry Simmons Frieze, 1879-1881 and 1883--1889 Alexander Winchell, 1881-1883 and 1889-1891 Francis W. Kelsey, 1891--1927 Charles A. Sink (Executive Secretary, 1904--1927) 1927-MUSICAL DIRECTORS
Calvin B. Cady, 1879-1888 Albert A. Stanley, 1888-1921 Earl V. Moore, 1921--1939
Founded by Albert A. Stanley in 1894
Albert A. Stanley, 1894-1921 Earl V. Moore, 1922-1939
Thor Johnson, 1940-ORGANIZATIONS
The Boston Festival Orchestra. Emil Mollenhauer, Conductor, 1894-1904
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Frederick Stock, Conductor, 1904--; Eric De Lamarter, Associate Conductor, 1918--1935
The Philadelphia Orchestra. Leopold Stokowski, Conductor, Saul Caston and Charles O'Connell, Associate Conductors, 1936; Eugene Ormandy and Jose Iturbi, Conductors, 1937; Eugene Ormandy, Conductor, 1938; Eugene Ormandy, Conductor, Saul Caston, Associate Conductor, Harl McDonald and Georges Enesco, Guest Conductors, 1939; Eugene Ormandy, Conductor, Saul Caston, Associate Conductor, Harl McDonald, Guest Conductor, 1940
The University Choral Union, Albert A. Stanley, Conductor, 1894--1921; Earl V. Moore, Conductor, 1922--1939; Thor Johnson, Conductor, 1940-The Young People's Festival Chorus (now the Festival Youth Chorus), trained by Florence B. Potter, and conducted by Albert A. Stanley, 1913-1918 Conductors: Russell Carter, 1920; George Oscar Bowen, 1921--1924; Joseph E. Maddy, 1925-1927; Juva N. Higbee, 1928-1936; Roxy Cowin, 1937; Juva N. Higbee, 1938; Roxy Cowin, 1939; Juva N. Higbee, 1940The Stanley Chorus, trained by Margaret Martindale, 1934 The University Glee Club, trained by David Mattern, 1937 The Lyra Male Chorus, trained by Reuben H. Kempf, 1937
Gustav Hoist (London, England), 1923, 1932
Howard Hanson (Rochester), 1926, 1927, 1933, 1935
Felix Borowski (Chicago), 1927
Percy Grainger (New York), 1928
Georges Enesco (Paris), 1939
Harl McDonald (Philadelphia), 1939, 1940
1894 Manzoni Requiem, Verdi
1895 Damnation of Faust, Berlioz
1896 Lohengrin, Act I, Finale from Die Meistersinger, Wagner
1897 Arminius, Bruch; Stabat Mater, Rossini
1898 Manzoni Requiem, Verdi
1899 German Requiem, Brahms; Samson and Delilah, Saint-Saens
1900 Lily Nymph, Chadwick; Hora Novissima, Parker
1901 Elijah, Mendelssohn; Golden Legend, Sullivan
1902 Orpheus, Gluck; Faust, Gounod Caractacus, Elgar; A'ida, Verdi
American premiere at the May Festival Concerts.
1904. Fair Ellen, Bruch; Dream of Gerontius, Elgar; Carmen, Bizet
1905 St. Paul, Mendelssohn; Arminius, Bruch
1906 Stabat Mater, Dvorak; A Psalm; A Psalm of Victory, Stanley; A'ida, Verdi
1907 Messiah, Handel; Samson and Delilah, Saint-Saens
1908 Creation, Haydn; Faust, Gounod
1909 Seasons, Haydn; Damnation of Faust, Berlioz
1910 Fair Ellen, Bruch; Odysseus, Bruch; New Life, Wolf-Ferrari
1911 Judas Maccabeus, Handel; Eugene Onegin, Tchaikovsky
1912 Dream of Gerontius, Elgar; Samson and Delilah, Saint-Saens; Chorus Triomphalis,
1913 Laus Deo, Stanley; Manzoni Requiem, Verdi; Lohengrin, Act I, and Finale from
Die Meistersinger, Wagner; The Walrus and the Carpenter (Children), Fletcher 1914. Caractacus, Elgar; Messiah, Handel; Into the World (Children), Benoit
1915 New Life, Wolf-Ferrari; Children's Crusade, Pierne
1916 Paradise Lost, Bossi; Samson and Delilah, Saint-Saens; Children at Bethlehem
(Children), Pierne
1917 Dream of Gerontius, Elgar; Aida, Verdi; The Walrus and the Carpenter (Children), Fletcher
1918 The Beatitudes, Franck; Carmen, Bizet; Into the World (Children), Benoit
1919 Ode to Music, Hadley; Faust, Gounod; Fair Land of Freedom, Stanley
1920 Manzoni Requiem, Verdi; Damnation of Faust, Berlioz
1921 Elijah, Mendelssohn; Aida, Verdi; Voyage of Arion (Children), Moore
1922 New Life, Wolf-Ferrari; A Psalmodic-Rhapsody, Stock; Tannhiiuser (Paris version), Wagner; A Song of Spring (Children), Busch
1923 B-minor Mass (Excerpts), Bach; fHymn of Jesus, Hoist; Dirge for Two Veterans,
Hoist; Samson and Delilah, Saint-Saens
1924 B-minor Mass (Excerpts), Bach; fLa Primavera (Spring), Respighi; fSea Drift,
Delius; Excerpts from Ai'da and La Forza del Destino, Verdi
1925 The Bells, Rachmaninoff; B-minor Mass (Excerpts), Bach; La Gioconda, Ponchielli; Alice in Wonderland (Children), Kelley
1926 Elijah, Mendelssohn; Lohengrin, Wagner; The Lament of Beowulf, Hanson; The
Walrus and the Carpenter (Children), Fletcher
1927 Missa Solemnis, Beethoven; fChoral Symphony, 2d and 3d movements, Hoist;
Carmen, Bizet; Heroic Elegy, Hanson; Voyage of Arion (Children), Moore
1928 St. Francis of Assisi, Pierne; Marching Song of Democracy, Grainger; Aida, Verdi;
Quest of the Queer Prince (Children), Hyde
1929 German Requiem, Brahms; New Life, Wolf-Ferrari; Samson and Delilah, SaintSaens; Hunting of the Snark (Children), Boyd
1930 Magnificat, Bach; King David, Honegger; Manzoni Requiem, Verdi; A Symphony of Song (Children), Strong
1931 St. Francis of Assisi, Pierne; Boris Godounov (original version), Moussorgsky; Old
Johnny Appleseed (Children), Gaul
1932 Creation, Haydn; Symphony of Psalms, Stravinski; fChoral Fantasia, Hoist;
fLegend of Kitesh, Rimski-Korsakov; The Spider and the Fly (Children), Protheroe
1933 Belshazzar's Feast, Walton; Merry Mount, Hanson; Spring Rapture (Children),
World premiere at the May Festival Concerts, t American premiere at the May Festival Concerts.
1934. The Seasons, Haydn; fEin Friedenslied, Heger; By the Rivers of Babylon,
Loeffler; The Ugly Duckling, English J935 Songs from "Drum Taps," Hanson; King David, Honegger; Boris Godounov
(original version), Moussorgsky; Jumblies (Children), James
1936 Manzoni Requiem, Verdi; Caractacus, Elgar; Children at Bethlehem (Children),
1937 A'fda, Verdi; fThe Seasons, Fogg; Spring Rapture (Children), Gaul; Excerpts
from Parsifal, Wagner
1938 The Bells, Rachmaninoff; Cantata, Paul Bunyan (Children), James; Carmen,
1939 Otello, Verdi; Choral Symphony, McDonald; Psalmus Hungaricus, Kodaly;
Onward, Ye Peoples, Sibelius; Alto Rhapsody, Brahms
1940 Samson and Delilah, Saint-Saens; Cantata: The Inimitable Lovers, Charles
Vardell, Jr.
1941 Alleluia, Randall Thompson; Requiem, Brahms; Eugene Onegin, Tchaikovsky;
Saint Mary Magdalene, d'Indy; Songs, M. E. Gillett
1942 King David, Honegger; Ninth Symphony, Beethoven; The Walrus and the Carpenter (Children), Fletcher
World premiere at the May Festival Concerts, t American premiere at the May Festival Concerts.
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY, in addition to the annual May Festival, maintains other concert series. The programs provided in these concerts during the season of 1941--42 were as follows:
FIRST CONCERT Wednesday Evening, October 22, 1941
Grace Moore, Soprano Isaac Van Grove, at the Piano
PROGRAM Four Shakespeare Songs
Orpheus with His Lute, from "Henry VIII"..........Sullivan
Hark, Hark, the Lark! from "Cymbeline".....Castelnuovo-Tedesco
Come Away, Death! from "Twelfth Night"..........Quilter
Come, Buy! from "A Winter's Tale" ..........Buzzi-Peccia
Ouvre ton coeur, from "Carmen"................Bizet
Waltz................ ........ Arensky
Toi seul . . . .-.................Tchaikovsky
La Maja y el ruisenor, from "Goyescas"............Granados
Danse apache, from "The Jewels of the Madonna".......Wolf-Ferrari
SpringVoices .....................Quilter
Tus ojos Falla
Ma Curly-Headed Babbie .................Clutsam
Aria, "Un bel di" from "Madame Butterfly"...........Puccini
Thursday Evening, October 30, 1941
Emanuel Feuermann, Violoncellist
Albert Hirsh, Accompanist
Sonata in F major, Op. 99, No. 2...............Brahms
Variations on a Theme by Mozart, in E-flat major........Beethoven
Sonata in E major...................Valentini
Suite in Five Movements (for 'cello alone)...........Hindemith
Apres un reve ......................Faure
At the Fountain ....................Davidoff
Introduction and Polonaise, Op. 3...............Chopin
Sunday Afternoon, November 9, 1941
Cleveland Symphony Orchestra
Artur Rodzinski, Conductor
Overture to "Euryanthe" ................von Weber
Symphony No. 5 in E-flat major, Op. 82............Sibelius
"Iberia," Impressions for Orchestra, No. 2............Debussy
"Scenario for Orchestra" on Themes from "Show Boat"........Kern
Thursday Evening, November 18, 1941
Giovanni Martinelli, Tenor
Ezio Pinza, Bass
An die Musik.....................Schubert
Die Mainacht .....................Brahms
"Ch'ella mi creda" from "Girl of the Golden West".........Puccini
Giovanni Martinelli
Tu lo sai....................... ToRELLI
Lungi dal caro bene....................Sarti
Ich grolle nicht....................Schumann
Der Atlas ......................Schubert
Ezio Pinza
"O Paradiso" from "L'Africana"..............Meyerbeer
Mr. Martinelli
Velvet Shoes.....................Thompson
Thunderin', Wonderin' (Negro Spiritual)...........MacGimsey
Nebbie .......................Respighi
"II lacerato spirito" from "Simon Boccanegra"...........Verdi
Mr. Pinza
Apres un reve .....................Faure
"La fleur que tu m'avais jetee" from "Carmen"........, . . Bizet
Mr. Martinelli
Duet: I Mulattieri....................Massini
Mr. Martinelli and Mr. Pinza
Sunday Afternoon, November 30, 1941
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Frederick Stock, Conductor
Suite No. 2 in B minor for Strings and Flute............Bach
"On the Shores of Sorrento," from Symphonic Fantasia, "Aus Italien," Op. 16 . Strauss
Fantasia, "Francesca da Rimini," Op. 32 ..........Tchaikovsky
Variations on an Original Theme, Op. 36 .............Elgar
Capriccio Espagnol, Op. 34 . . . ..........Rimski-Korsakov
Wednesday Evening, December 10, 1941
Boston Symphony Orchestra
Serge Koussevitzky, Conductor
Symphony in D major (Haffner) (K. 385) ...........Mozart
Symphony No. 3.................William Schuman
Symphony No. 4 in E minor, Op. 98...............Brahms
Monday Evening, January 19, 1942
Robert Casadesus, Pianist
Gavotte; Le Rappel des Oiseaux; Les Cyclopes; Les Sauvages; Les
Niais de Sologne...................Rameau
Carnaval, Op. 9....................Schumann
Ballade, Op. 23; Berceuse, Op. 57; Tarantelle, Op. 43........Chopin
Le Retour des Severac
La Soiree dans Grenade...................Debussy
Alborada del Gracioso................... Ravel
Tuesday Evening, February 3, 1942
Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra
Dimitri Mitropoulos, Conductor
Overture, "Academic Festival"................Brahms
Symphony No. 3 in F major, Op. 90..............Brahms
Suite, "Le Tombeau de Couperin" ...............Ravel
Toccata No. 1 in C major...............Bach-Weiner
NINTH CONCERT Thursday Evening, February 19, 1942
Joseph Szigeti, Violinist Andor Foldes, at the Piano
Concerto in D minor...................Tartini
Rondo in D major................ Schubert-Friedberg
Sonata in A major....................Franck
Slavonic Dance in G minor..............Dvorak-Kreisler
Study in Thirds..................Scriabin-Szigeti
Snow (Norwegian Song).................Lie-Szigeti
Intermezzo from "Hary Jdnos" Suite...........Kodaly-Szigeti
Maidens in the Garden................Mompou-Szigeti
Russian Dance (From "Petrushka")..........Stravinski-Dushkin
Tuesday Evening, March 3, 1942
Vitya Vronsky and Victor Babin, Pianists
Sonata in G.....................J. S. Bach
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring ...............J. S. Bach
Duettino concertante, after Mozart...............Busoni
Second Suite, Op. 17.................Rachmaninoff
Three March Rhythms ...................Babin
Scherzo, Op. S....................Saint-Saens
Ritmo ........................Infante
"Der Rosenkavalier" Waltzes ..............Strauss-Babin
"M E S S I A H" Georg Friedrich Handel
Marie Wilkins, Sofrano Edwina Eustis, Contralto
Ernest McChesney, Tenor Douglas Beattie, Baritone
Palmer Christian, Organist
University Choral Union
University Symphony Orchestra
Thor Johnson, Conductor
ALEC TEMPLETON, Pianist Thursday Evening, February 26, 1942
Fantasy in C major ...................Handel
Prelude and Fugue in C-sharp minor..............Bach
Impromptu in F-sharp major ................Chopin
Prelude, Chorale, and Fugue.................Franck
Pagode; Heather; Little Shepherd; Serenade for a Doll;
Sarabande; Toccata..................Debussy
Turkish March (Mozart) ; Haydn Takes to Ridin'; Improvisation on
Five Notes; Doin's at the Ruins; Improvisation on Four Melodies . . Templeton
Lecture Hall, Rackham Building
January 23 and 24, 1942
Roth String Quartet
Feri Roth, Violin Julius Shaier, Viola
Rachmael Weinstock, Violin Oliver Edel, Violoncello
Quartet in D major, Op. 76, No. 5...............Haydn
Quartet in F major.....................Ravel
Quartet in A Minor, Op. 41, No. 1..............Schumann
Quartet in D major, Op. 11...............Tchaikovsky
"Rispetti e Strambotti" .................Malipiero
Quartet in G minor, Op. 33, No. 5.............BOCCHERINI
Quartet in D major (K. 499) ................Mozart
Four Preludes and Fugues................Roy Harris
Quartet in F major, Op. 135 ...............Beethoven
announces the following CONCERTS FOR THE SEASON OF 1942-1943
Sixty-Fourth Annual Choral Union Series
October 20 Don Cossack Chorus, Serge Jaroff, Conductor October 29 Gladys Swarthout, Mezzo-Soprano
November 8 Cleveland Symphony Orchestra, Artur Rodzinski, Conductor
November 19 Albert Spalding, Violinist December 3 Arthur Schnabel, Pianist
December 9 Boston Symphony Orchestra,
Serge Koussevitzky, Conductor
January 18 Josef Hofmann, Pianist February 16 Jascha Heifetz, Violinist
March 3 Detroit Symphony Orchestra,
Sir Thomas Beecham, Guest Conductor
March 17 Nelson Eddy, Baritone
Golden Jubilee May Festival May 5, 6, 7, 8, 1943. Six Concerts.
Annual Christmas Concert December 13. "Messiah" by Handel.
Third Annual Chamber Music Festival
January 22 and 23, 1943. The Roth String Quartet in three concerts. [84]

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