UMS Concert Program, February 12, 1953: Seventy-fourth Annual Choral Union Concert Series -- Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra
Complete Series: 3096
Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Charles A. Sink, President Thor Johnson, Guest Conductor
Lester McCoy, Associate Conductor
Seventh Concert 1952-1953 Complete Series 3096
Choral Union Concert Series
MINNEAPOLIS SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Antal Dorati, Conductor
Thursday Evening, February 12, 1953, at 8:30 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
"Eine kleine Nachtmusik," Serenade for String Orchestra Mozart
Romanza: andante Menuetto: allegretto Rondo: allegro
"La Mer," Three Orchestral Sketches......Debussy
From Dawn to Noon at Sea
Frolics of the Waves
Dialogue Between the Wind and the Sea
Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68......Brahms
Un poco sostenuto; allegro Andante sostenuto
Un poco allegretto e grazioso
Adagio; piu andante; allegro non troppo, ma con brio
Note.--The University Musical Society has presented the Minneapolis Symphony-Orchestra on previous occasions as follows: Jan. 28, 1941; Feb. 3, 1942; and Feb. 15, 1948.
The Steinway is the official piano oj the University Musical Society.
ARS LONGA VITA BREYIS
PROGRAM NOTES By CARLO FISCHER and DONALD FERGUSON
"Eine kleine Nachtmusik," Serenade for
String Orchestra.....Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
It is interesting to note that this simple, crystalline, and exquisite work was written at the height of Mozart's creative power. It was composed in 1787, the year that brought forth Don Giovanni. "Eine kleine Nachtmusik," for which there is no adequate English translation, gives the impression that Mozart, the master, had seized or made an interval in his strenuous life to recall the memories of his youthful sym?phonies, as the busy man rests and refreshes himself with early recollections. Yet with all its simplicity of construction it is a masterpiece, showing that though it may be recollections of youth it is not youth itself. The work is straightforward in form, the four movements calling for no detailed description. The appeal of the music is to the ear and to the heart and is best listened to in complete relaxation.
La Mer ("The Sea"), Three Orchestral
Sketches........Claude Achille Debussy
This is the largest in dimension of Debussy's orchestral works. It was begun in 1903 and finished two years later. It was first performed at one of the Lamoreux concerts in October, 1905, under the direction of Camille Chevillard. Its success was not overwhelming, either then or for many years thereafter, whether in Paris or abroad; but it has proved itself in public favor and must now be reckoned one of the most significant anticipations of the twentieth-century trend in music.
It is impossible to give, in our present space, any adequate analysis of the three impressionistic pictures which constitute the suite. It appeared at a time when Richard Strauss had established the symphonic poem as the apparent successor of the classical symphony, and the work was at first understood as being of that genre. Lacking any but the most general program, however, the piece is rather to be regarded as an essay in mood-painting, toward which end rather faint pictorial detail con?tributes. The form, at any rate, is not dictated by any narrative. And we can nowa?days accept without reservation Debussy's profession of faith, uttered in relation to this piece, but holding good for all his work: "No fixed rule should guide the creative artist; rules are established by works of art, not for works of art. One should seek discipline in freedom, not in the precepts of a philosophy in its decline-that is good only for those who are weak. I write music only to serve Music as best I can, and without any other intention."
The first of the three sketches is entitled "From Dawn to Noon at Sea." It begins (tr&s lent) in B minor with matter admirably designed to suggest the coming of dawn over the waste of waters. No formal thematic development occurs, or is to be expected, but a gradual clearing of the light and a gradual growth in animation may suggest the rising of the wind and the imperceptible growth of something like sentient life in the sea itself. We are thus prepared for the second phase of the picture, the "Frolics of the Waves," which follows without pause or any precise beginning. Here, although those who will can see the heaving surface, more is pictured than the swirl and tumult of the undulations. Life seems actually immanent in the waves, inspiring their joyous tussles. And there is need of still more vivid impersonation of the elements if we are to grasp the intent of the last section--the "Dialogue Between
the Wind and the Sea." Once upon a time, this might have appeared an intelligible conversation between Aeolus and Neptune. It is much more amiable, however, than that which followed the shipwreck of Aeneas.
Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68 .... Johannes Brahms
Brahms was one of the most remarkable personalities among composers in that he took the attitude that his God-given musical gifts were a sacred trust, to be used with humble reverence and conscientious devotion. He was so impressed by the genius of Bach, Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven that he felt it would be presumptious to attempt composing a symphony until he had reached mature age and had mastered the technique of his chosen art. His wealth of songs, piano pieces, and chamber music, written before he attempted a symphony, attest to his efforts to develop his genius to the highest degree, as he was forty-three before he produced his first sym?phony, in the year 1876. Twenty years previous to that, Robert Schumann, who sensed Brahms' unusual gifts, suggested that he try his hand at a symphony, but young Johannes felt that he was far from ready. At that, the germ of such a work began to take form in his mind but not until ten years later did he begin to make sketches and then another ten years passed during which the symphony was in process of creation. How well he succeeded the world now knows and the master lived long enough to enjoy the plaudits of the music-loving public not only for his first sym?phony, but his second, third, and fourth as well.
There was a while when Brahms' First Symphony was considered as too com?plex and involved for the average listener, but this feeling has long since vanished through the repeated performances of the First and other symphonies, and a better understanding of the man and his ideals. Brahms was a simple, unassuming, retiring soul, worshipped by those who knew him personally and beloved by those who knew him only through his music. He had a great love for his fellow men and for nature, and these qualities made themselves felt in all his works. He came of humble sur?roundings and had his share of hardships before gaining recognition, but a keen sense of humor stood him in good stead throughout his career and helped overcome many a difficult problem, both personal and musical.
The first movement of the C minor symphony "is one of the most stoutly knit, impassioned pieces of writing Brahms--or anyone else for that matter--ever put on paper." The second movement is calm, contemplative, lovely, and serene. The third is dominated by a gentle mood, while the final movement is one of the greatest achievements in the entire literature of Brahms.
THE BUDAPEST QUARTET will appear in the three concerts of the Cham?ber Music Festival, Friday, February 20, 8:30; Saturday, February 21, 8:30; and Sunday, February 22, 2:30. Rackham Auditorium.
HEIFETZ will be heard in the fourth concert in the Extra Concert Series, Tuesday, February 17, at 8:30, in Hill Auditorium.
APRIL 30, MAY 1, 2, 3, 1953
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA AT ALL CONCERTS
ZINKA MILANOV, Soprano DOROTHY WARENSKJOLD, Soprono JANICE MOUDRY, Contralto HAROLD HAUGH, Tenor KENNETH SMITH, Baritone CESARE SIEPI, Bass ZINO FRANCESCATTI, Violinist
MYRA HESS, Pianist RUDOLF FIRKUSNY, Pianist EUGENE ORMANDY, Conductor THOR JOHNSON, Conductor ALEXANDER HILSBERG, Conductor MARGUERITE HOOD, Conductor UNIVERSITY CHORAL UNION
FESTIVAL YOUTH CHORUS
THURSDAY, APRIL 30, 8:30
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor Soloist: Myra Hess, Pianist
"Academic Festival" Overture . . Brahms Concerto in A minor, Op. 54, for
Piano and Orchestra . . . Schumann
Myra Hess Symphony N'o. 5. Op. 100 . .
FRIDAY, MAY 1, 8:30
The Philadelphia Orchestra
University Choral Union Thor Johnson, Guest Conductor
Dorothy Warenskjold, Soprano
Janice Moudry, Contralto
Harold Hough, Tenor
Kenneth Smith, Bass
Mass in B minor .....Bach
SATURDAY, MAY 1, 2:30
Alexander Hilsberg and Marguerite Hood,
Festival Youth Chorus
Soloist: Zino Francescatti, Violinist
Overture, "Italiana in Aigeri" . . Rossini
Suite of Sonus . . . Benjamin Britten Festival Youth Chorus
Overture-Fantasia. "Komeo and Juliet" ....
Concerto in D major for Violin and Orchestra .... Zino Franckscatti
Tchaikovsky . Beethoven
SATURDAY, MAY 2, 8:30
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor Soloist: Ccsarc Siepi, Bass
Tnne Poem. "Don Juan," Op. 20
"Mentre ti lascio, o fislia" (K. 513) . Mozart
Cesare Siepi Symphony, "Mathls der Maler" . Hindemith
"K.lla ci ammai m'amo" from Don Carlo Verdi "Di sposo di padre" from Salvator Rosa Gomez
Mr. Siepi Polka and Fugue from "Schwanda" Weinberger
SUNDAY, MAY 3, 2:30
The University Choral Union
Thor Johnson, Conductor
Soloist: Rudolf Firkusny, Pianist
Overture in the Italian Style . . Schubert
"Prairie" .... Normand Lockwood
University Choral Union Concerto No. 3 for Piano and
SUNDAY, MAY 3, 8:30
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor Soloist: Zinka Milanov, Soprano
Symphony No. 7 in C major . . . Haydn
"Ah, perfido," Op. 65 ... Beethoven
Second Essay for Orchestra . . . Barber
"Pace, pace" from Forza del Dcstino . Verdi
"Ritorna vincitor" from Aida . . . Verdi
Mme Milanov "La Valse".......Ravel
SEASON TICKETS NOW ON SALE--$11.00--$9.00--$8.00--at Uni?versity Musical Society, Burton Memorial Tower.