UMS Concert Program, May 4, 5, 6, 7, 1961: The Sixty-eighth Annual Ann Arbor May Festival -- The Philadelphia Orchestra
Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
The University Musical Society
The University of Michigan
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
of The University of Michigan
Program of the Sixty-eighth Annual
May 4, 5, 6, 7, 1961
Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Published by the University Musical Society, Ann Arbor
Eugene Ormandy (photograph)........................ 4
University Musical Society, Board of Directors...... 5
Performing Artists.................................. 7
Concert Programs................................... 8
First Concert....................................... 17
Second Concert..................................... 29
Third Concert...................................... 44
Fourth Concert..................................... 51
Fifth Concert...................................... 60
Sixth Concert...................................... 68
Notes on the Philadelphia Orchestra and May Festival
The University Choral Union and Boys' Choir.......... 79
The Philadelphia Orchestra........................... 81
The Musical Society Orchestra........................ 82
History, Repertoire, and Resume
The University Musical Society....................... 83
The Ann Arbor May Festival........................ 84
Choral Union Repertoire............................. 85
Resume of 1960-1961 Season......................... 87
Concerts for the 1961-1962 Season................... 93
Musical Director and Conductor, The PhUadelphia Orchestra
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Board of Directors
Charles A. Sink, A.B., M.Ed., LL.D., HH.D. . . President Alexander G. Ruthven, Ph.D., LL.D., Sc.D. . Vice-President
Erich A. Walter, A.M...........Secretary
Oscar A. Eberbach, A.B..........Treasurer
Roscoe 0. Bonisteel, LL.B., LL.D., Sc.D.
James R. Breakey, Jr., A.M., LL.B., LL.D.
Harlan Hatcher, Ph.D., Litt.D., LL.D.
Harley A. Haynes, M.D.
Thor Johnson, M.Mus., Mus.D.
E. Blythe Stason, A.B., B.S., J.D.
Henry F. Vaughan, M.S., Dr.P.H.
Merlin Wiley, A.B., LL.B.
Gail W. Rector, B.Mus., Executive Director
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY is a nonprofit organiza?tion devoted to educational purposes. For eighty years its concerts have been maintained through the sale of tickets. Each year generous culture-minded citizens make contributions to the Society. These gifts, credited to the Endowment Fund, will commensurately ensure continu?ance of the quality of concert presentation, and make possible advances in scope and activity as new opportunities arise.
THE SIXTY-EIGHTH ANNUAL
ANN ARBOR MAY FESTIVAL
Eugene Ormandy, Orchestral Conductor
William Smith, Assistant Orchestral Conductor
Thor Johnson, Guest Conductor
Aaron Copland, Guest Conductor
Lester McCoy, Choirmaster
The Philadelphia Orchestra
The University Choral Union
Birgit Nilsson.................................. Soprano
Janice Harsanyi .................................Soprano
Frances Greer.................................. Soprano
Mary Mackenzie .............................. Contralto
David Lloyd ...................................... Tenor
Ara Berberian ..................................... Bass
John Browning.................................. Pianist
Anshel Brusilow ............................... Violinist
Vera Zorina and Hugh Norton Nancy Heusel, Jerrold Sandler, and Marvin Diskin
(Biographical sketches of all performers on pages 73-78).
The Steinway is the official piano of the University Musical Society. The Baldwin Piano is the official piano of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
FIRST MAY FESTIVAL CONCERT
Thursday Evening, May 4, at 8:30
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA EUGENE ORMANDY, Conductor
BIRGIT NILSSON, Soprano
Compositions of Richard Wagner Overture to Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg
Elsa's Traume, from Lohengrin
Prelude to Act I and Love-Death, from Tristan and Isolde
Excerpts from Die Gotterddmmerung:
Siegfried's Rhine Journey Siegfried's Death and Funeral March Briinnhilde's Immolation Closing Scene
SECOND MAY FESTIVAL CONCERT
Friday Evening, May 5, at 8:30
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA THOR JOHNSON, Guest Conductor
Joan of Arc at the Stake,
Dramatic oratorio......Arthur Honegger
(Text by Paul Claudel)
Joan of Arc.....................................Vera Zorina
Brother Dominic ...............................Hugh Norton
The Virgin.........................Janice Harsanyi, Soprano
Margaret............................ Frances Greer, Soprano
Catherine ....................... Mary MacKenzie, Contralto
John of Luxemburg
Reynold of Chartres
William of Flavy
A Voice f...................Ara Berberian, Bass
Second Herald J
Choruses: University Choral Union and Boys' Choir Other speaking roles: Nancy Heusel, Jerrold Sandler, and Marvin Diskin
The Voices of Heaven Catherine and Margaret
The Book The King Sets Out for Rheims
The Voices of Earth The Sword of Joan
Joan Given Up to the Beasts Trimazo (May Song)
Joan at the Stake (Finale) The Burning of Joan of Arc The Kings, or the Invention of Playing Cards
The Prologue and eleven scenes are performed without intermission.
.David Lloyd, Tenor
THIRD MAY FESTIVAL CONCERT
Saturday Afternoon, May 6, at 2:30
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA
WILLIAM SMITH, Assistant Conductor
AARON COPLAND, Guest Conductor
ANSHEL BRUSILOW, Violinist LORNE MUNROE, Violoncellist
PROGRAM Overture to Colas Breugnon................................Kabalevsky
Orchestral Variations........................................ Copland
Conducted by the composer
Concerto in A minor, for Violin and Violoncello, Op. 102 ..........Brahms
Vivace non troppo
Anshel Brusilow and Lorne Munroe
Suite from The Tender Land ................................ Copland
Introduction and Love Music
Finale: The Promise of Living
Conducted by the composer
?Suite No. 2 from the Ballet, Daphnis and ChloS..................Ravel
Daybreak Pantomime General Dance
FOURTH MAY FESTIVAL CONCERT
Saturday Evening, May 6, at 8:30
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA EUGENE ORMANDY, Conductor
ROBERT NOEHREN, Organist JOHN BROWNING, Pianist
Compositions of American composers
"Toccata Festiva" for Organ and Orchestra......................Barber
Symphony No. 7 ............................................. Piston
Con moto Adagio
Concerto No. 2 in D minor for Piano and Orchestra..........MacDowell
Larghetto calmato Presto giocoso
Largo; molto allegro
"Rhapsody in Blue"....................................... Gershwin
FIFTH MAY FESTIVAL CONCERT
Sunday Afternoon, May 7, at 2:30
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA
THE UNIVERSITY CHORAL UNION
THOR JOHNSON, Guest Conductor
William Warfield, Baritone
Janice Harsanyi, Soprano Mary MacKenzie, Contralto
Frances Greer, Soprano David Lloyd, Tenor
Elijah: A Dramatic Oratorio for Chorus,
Soloists, and Orchestra, Op. 70 .... Mendelssohn
Introduction (Baritone) As God the Lord.
Chorus Help, Lord!
Duet (Soprano and Contralto) with
Chorus Lord, bow thine ear. Recitative (Tenor) Ye people, rend your
Aria (Tenor) If with all your hearts. Chorus Yet doth the Lord. Recitative (Contralto) Elijah, get thee
hence. Recitative (Contralto) Now Cherith's
brook. Recitative (Soprano) What have I to do
Recitative (Baritone) Give me thy son. Chorus Blessed are the men who fear
Him. Recitative (Baritone) with Chorus As
God the Lord of Sabaoth Chorus Baal, we cry to thee. Recitative (Baritone) Call him louder! Chorus Hear our cry, O Baal! Recitative (Baritone) Call him louder. Chorus Baal! Baal! Recitative and Air (Baritone) Draw near,
all ye people. Chorus Cast thy burden upon the Lord
(Chorale). Recitative (Baritone) O Thou, who mak-
est thine angels spirits. Chorus The fire descends. Aria (Baritone) Is not His word like a
Arioso (Contralto) Woe unto them who
forsake Him! Recitative (Tenor) O man of God, help
thy people! Recitative (Baritone) with Youth and
Chorus O Lord, Thou has overthrown
thine enemies. Chorus Thanks be to God!
Aria (Soprano) Hear ye, Israel! Chorus Be not afraid. Recitative (Baritone and Contralto) The
Lord hath exalted thee. Recitative and Chorus Have ye not heard! Chorus Woe to him! Recitative (Tenor and Baritone) Man of
Aria (Baritone) It is enough. Recitative (Tenor) See, now he sleepeth. Trio Lift thine eyes. Chorus He, watching over Israel. Recitative (Contralto) Arise, Elijah. Recitative (Baritone) O Lord, I have la?bored in vain.
Aria (Contralto) O rest in the Lord. Recitative (Baritone) Night falleth round
Recitative (Soprano) Arise, now! Chorus Behold, God the Lord. Chorus Then did Elijah. Aria (Tenor) Then shall the righteous
Quartet O come, every one that thirsteth. Chorus And then shall your light break
Organist: Mary McCall Stubbins
SIXTH MAY FESTIVAL CONCERT
Sunday Evening, May 7, at 8:30
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA EUGENE ORMANDY, Conductor
EUGENE ISTOMIN, Pianist
PROGRAM Compositions of Sergei Rachmaninoff
Vocalise, Op. 34, No. 14
?Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18, for Piano and Orchestra
?Symphony No. 2 in E minor, Op. 27
Largo; allegro moderato Allegro molto Adagio
GLENN D. McGEOCH
The Author oj the annotations expresses his appreciation to Raymond Park for his assistance in collecting materials; and to Ferol Brinkman and Anne Barnett oj the Office of University Publications for their editorial services.
Thursday Evening, May 4
Compositions of Richard Wagner
Richard Wagner was born May 22, 1813, in Leipzig; died February 13, 1883, in Venice.
Hear my creed: Music can never and in no possible alliance cease to be the highest, the redeeming art. It is of nature that what all the other arts but hint at, through her and in her becomes the most indubitable of certainties--the most direct and definite of truths.
Wagner's ideas, like a hundred aspects of German history during the last cen?tury and a half, were perverted to evil ends in Nazi Germany. Hitler's diabolical genius seized upon them for a purpose never intended, nor even dreamed of by their creator, and interpreted them as the embodiment of a political philosophy of force and Teutonic superiority. In his hands they became a postulation of both aristocratic racialism and plebeian socialism. In the minds of many, even today, Wagner is still the symbol of these ideas.
Program notes are not the medium for discussions of this nature; but it will not be amiss to emphasize the true and moving spirit of humanity to be found in Wagner's art--a spirit that must not be overshadowed or lost by the super-imposition of false doctrines of power, brute force, and hate. Wagner's art is still accepted and reverently attended to by 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, not by means of any material institution 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
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is demagogy. It is precisely these lines . . . that attest the intellectuality of Wagner's national?ism and its remoteness from the political sphere; they betray a complete anarchistic indiffer?ence to the state, so long as the spiritually German, the "Deutsche Kunst," survives.
Not since Bach has a composer so overwhelmingly dominated his period, his contemporaries, and followers with a sovereignty of imagination and potency of expression. But Bach and Wagner share little else, aesthetically or spiritually. Bach's music is transcendent, absolute and controlled; that of Wagner is indi?vidual, emanating directly and unmistakably from his personality; it is mov?ingly sensuous, excitingly emotional, and highly descriptive. His life, unlike that of Bach, was thrilling, superbly vital, and colorful. While Bach worked oblivious to 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 overeffective-ness. Bach died in obscurity. 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 emotional significance; he empha?sized the marvelous dramatic possibilities that lay in the orchestra, thereby realizing the further 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 with a music glamorous, incandescent, unfettered, and charged with passion, he entered a world of strange ecstacies, a world to which music had never before had wings to soar.
In 1933, fifty years after the death of Wagner, Olin Downes wrote: "So far in the history of music, Wagner has only background. There is no foreground to indicate his position relative to the present and future. There can be no scales on which to weigh him until another composer, as great as he, and with an equal sweep of vision comes before us. In the meantime we remain in the shadow of a colossus. As no other person in the world of music, Wagner bestrode his age and he dominates ours."
For this reason the world of music has never made its peace with him. This is to be expected since few composers in the world's history have flung in its face such challenges--some still unanswered. Today Wagner is as great and para?doxical a problem as he was a little less than a century ago. That this is clearly evident is shown in the fact that, as the years pass and one indeterminate
Thomas Mann, Freud, Goethe and Wagner (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., 1933).
creative period follows another, the vehemence with which he is attacked increases. He has been for several decades the target for critics who make the mistake of identifying his outdated theories with his works, and for creative artists who still look at him not only as a threat, but as a symbol of everything they have learned to despise in the age he epitomizes--excessive emo?tionalism, vulgarity of overstatement, and unashamed exploitation of private feeling.
It is true that Wagner inherited and transmitted to posterity the contagion of his era. He was marked by the same giantism of thought that developed in the growing Germany of the century, when conditions favored the growth of a Teutonic philosophy that indulged in transcendental flights of thought. He was driven by a form of nineteenth century megalomania to create grandiose works of formidable proportions, and compelled to write tomes of cumbrous prose to make his purpose apparent to posterity. In these verbal explanations he over?wrote himself as he overcomposed, for he lived in a period that expected over?statement.
Unfortunately these incredibly illogical, unoriginal, and misleading writings have in our day reacted as a boomerang upon Wagner's art. They have usurped the place of significance in the minds of literary men, philosophers, musicians, and laymen until it has been generally assumed that his scores were conditioned by his theories. Nothing could be further from the truth. Wagner himself, even before he began work on The Ring, realized the impotence of his theoretical meanderings. In a letter to Theodor Uhlig in May, 18S3, we read: "Only to this degree can I look back upon my literary career of the past years with any sense of consolation--but I feel that through them, I myself have come to a clear realization of the issues involved within my own mind." Seen in proper relation to his achievements in creation, they served him merely to effect an intellectual catharsis; they purged his mind of all the artistic, moral, and ethical impurities which indeed were those of his age, and left him free to com?pose, unhampered by all the turgid intellectuality of his system.
Reduced to its simplest statement, Wagner's theory of the music drama merely demanded that opera, which in his day had become a vehicle for the display of vocal virtuosity, be restored to dramatic sanity, that subjects for operatic treat?ment should be selected which would suggest the largest amount of lyrical and emotional matter in the drama, that music should be created in accordance with the general mood of the scene or episode, and that the libretto should so far as possible approximate the spoken play except in emotional scenes, where music should supersede. This is sound operatic aesthetics in any period, and has been a guiding principle in every reform movement in the history of opera.
In his eagerness to restore dramatic significance to the opera of his day, Wag?ner quite typically overstated his central theme. "The error in the art genre of opera," he wrote in Opera and Drama (1850), "consists herein; that a means of expression (music) has been made the end, while the end of expression (drama) has been made the means." It was his conscious aim, he said, to restore the
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drama to its rightful place as the central core of opera. "For one thing there is that all the three united arts must will, in order to be free, and that one thing is the drama; the reaching of the drama's aim must be their common goal."
This theory of opera is not tenable. Had Wagner really believed it, and com?posed by it, we would not be listening here tonight to a complete program of his music. Its self-contained completeness makes it perfectly adaptable to concert per?formance. Contrary to Wagner's intention to make music the "means" of ex?pression and not the "end," we find in his great operas the subordination of drama to music carried to the furthest extreme. It is as a musician and not as a dramatist that Wagner retains and will always retain his hold upon mankind. He was great as an opera librettist only insofar as he saw instinctively as a musician the kind of plot or poetry necessary for the structure of his music, and was able to provide it. Genuine faultless poetry needs no musician, but when Wagner's music needed a poetic idea, it was often overbearing and cruel, de?priving the poetry of its true expressiveness. As he matured, Wagner more and more shaped his material in a form that would best afford the freest course to music. Always his dramatic material was selected and distributed in such a way that from The Flying Dutchman to his final work, Parsifal, he continued to ensure music its rightful place as the dominating art in opera.
To penetrate the true greatness of Wagner we must not over-emphasize him as a dramatist, poet, and philosopher, but approach him as a musician. The essence of his reform was not that he approximated the opera to drama. Far from this, he actually widened the gap between them by approximating the opera to the sym?phony. Nature had endowed him with the same symphonic gift she had bestowed upon Beethoven and Brahms; and he used this gift to deepen and enrich, in true romantic style, the musical significance of the lyric drama. Into the opera of his day, which was a loosely joined tissue of isolated musical numbers, he wove an organic symphonic texture. By incorporating the symphony into the music drama he gave to the drama a musical structure and intensity. Tristan and Isolde, for instance, is a case of drama becoming almost entirely music.
Wagner found the highest manifestation of his musical ideal for the lyric drama through the use of short melodic phrases or themes that were charged with a variety of emotional color. These he made the foundation of his musical struc?ture. These phrases, known as "leit-motives," were combined, developed, and built up as a substratum to the text and were presented generally in the orchestra, which now has a vastly greater potency and resource of expression than in former opera. The voice delivered the text in a musical declamation, a kind of endless melody of intensified expressiveness, varying in its melodic factor according to the nature of the mood to be expounded. Two elements, melodic declama?tion in the voice, and this vast, endless symphonic stream, are inseparably con?nected and built into each other's substance.
The use of the "leit-motive" sprang from the same desire, so characteristic
William Ashton Ellis, trans., "Art Works of the Future," Wagner's Prose Works (London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Triibner and Co., 1892-99), I.
of romanticism, to impart profundity and "meaning" to music What is often misunderstood is its function in opera. These themes or phrases of themes are often thought of as dramatic material, representing ideas, concepts, objects, and characters in the drama. In no place in all his writings does Wagner refer to them as such. To him they were used as a musical means, helping him to unify his gigantic scores by supplying a device of thematic derivation, development, and fragmentation, familiar since Beethoven in the construction of the symphony, but hitherto unknown in such a complete development in opera. His music, setting aside many of the old patterns that depended upon arbitrary and preconceived formulas of balance and recurrence of phrase, flowed on in one seemingly con?tinuous stream, the leit-motives threading and spreading throughout the score, alternating and intertwining with each other. Wagner's music dramas are thus colossal symphonies for orchestra, with stage accessories.
Instead of curtailing and limiting music and its function in opera, Wagner ex?panded immeasurably its expressive power and increasingly extended its boun?daries. In his writings he tried to intellectualize the music of his period-but he ended in the paradoxical position of having greatly increased its emo?tional significance. From the man who held the opinion of his period that music should be the servant of poetry and drama, who maintained that "reaching the drama's aim should be the common goal of all the arts," from the theorist who held that music was not to be regarded as the objective of the lyric theater, the following seldom if ever quoted passages will come as something of a shock--no less a revelation.
In an off-the-record conversation with Herman Ritter during a rehearsal at Bayreuth, Wagner said, "Altogether too much is talked and written about me. One single stroke of the bow is of more significance than all the usual gabble. I need an audience of people who know nothing at all about my art ideals--not those who make propaganda. The types of people that serve me best are those who do not even know that notes are written on a five-line staff."
While working on Tannhduser in 1844, he wrote the following letter to Karl Gaillard: "Before I go on to. write verses, or plot or scene, I am already intoxicated by the musical aroma of my subject. I have every note, every charac?teristic motive [leit-motive] in my head, so when the versification is complete and the scenes arranged the opera is practically finished for me."
In his essay, "A Pilgrimage to Beethoven" (1840), he wrote, "To let men sing, one must give them words. Yet who can frame in words that poesy which needs must form the basis of such a union of all the elements The poet must necessarily limp behind, for words are organs of speech far too weak for such a task."
This tendency at first coincided with the appearance of the motto theme in Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. A musical thought, in the form of a musical figure, bearing within itself some mysterious and hitherto unexplained meaning or idea, became characteristic of Beethoven, and from it sprang the method of development created by his genius. With increasing force this idea projected itself in the idee fixe of Berlioz's Symphonic fantastique and in the "unknown song whose initial solemn note is tolled by death" theme of Liszt's "Les Preludes." These nineteenth-century attempts to circumvent the infinite expressiveness of music with verbally expressed meanings were all evidences of its desire to bridge the gulf between music and speech.
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It is therefore no paradox to say that although Wagner was irresistibly im?pelled to express himself in the form of opera, he was by nature a symphonic com?poser. Thus it is not strange that the musician who was consciously trying to appear before the world as a dramatist should ultimately triumph through the domination and greatness of his music.
"I have recently said quite enough about the nature of music," he wrote in "A Communication to my Friends" in 1851, "I will refer to it simply as the good angel which preserved me as an artist, nay, which really first made me an artist, when my inner feeling commenced to revolt."
Overture to Die Meistersinger von Niirnberg
To the opera-going public, particularly in Germany, Wagner's single comedy Die Meistersinger is the most beloved of all his works. The gaiety and tune?fulness of the score, the intermingling of humor, satire, and romance in the text, are all reasons for its universal popularity.
As a reconstruction of the social life in the quaint medieval city of Niirn?berg, its truthfulness and vividness are beyond all praise. In its harmless satire, aimed in kindly humor at the manners, vices, and follies of the "tradesmen-musicians" and their attempt to keep the spirit of minstrelsy alive by dint of pedantic formulas, the plot is worthy to stand beside the best comedies of the world. Certainly it has no equal in operatic literature.
Among the great instrumental works whose fundamental principle is that of polyphony, the Prelude to Die Meistersinger stands alone. Polyphonic music, formerly the expression of corporate religious worship, now becomes the medium for the expression of the many-sidedness of individual character and the complexity of modern life. What a triumph for the man who was derided for his lack of scholarship because he had no desire to bury himself alive in dust, but who constructed, with a surety of control of all the resources of the most abstruse counterpoint, a monument of polyphonic writing reminiscent of Palestrina and Bach, and with no sacrifice of naturalness, simplicity, and truthfulness.
Like Beethoven in the "Leonore" overtures written for his opera Fidelio, Wagner constructed the symphonic introduction to his comedy so as to indicate the elements of the dramatic story, their progress in the develoment of the play, and finally the outcome.
The overture begins with the theme of the Meistersingers in heavy pompous chords which carry with them all the nobility and dignity indicative of the char?acter of the members of the guild, with their steadfast convictions and adherence to traditional rules. The theme is an embodiment of all that was sturdy, upright, and kindly in the medieval burgher.
The second theme, only fourteen measures in length, heard alternating in flute, oboe, and clarinet, expresses the tender love of Eva and Walther. With a flourish in the violins flaunted by brass, another characteristic meistersinger theme appears in the woodwinds, indicating the pompous corporate conscious-
ness of the guild, symbolized in their banner whereon is emblazoned King David playing his harp.
In an interlude the violins sing the famous "prize song" in which, in the last act, the whole work finds its highest expression. This section is abruptly ended with a restatement of the meistersinger theme, now in the form of a short scherzo in humorous staccato notes. A stirring climax is reached with the simultaneous sounding of the three main themes: the "prize song" in the first violins and first horns and cellos; the banner theme in woodwinds, lower horns, and second vio?lins; the meistersinger theme in basses of all choirs. There is little music so intricate, yet so human. In the words of Lawrence Gilman, it is "a wondrous score, with its Shakespearean abundance, its Shakespearean blend of humor and loveliness, the warmth and depth of its humanity, the sweet mellowness of its spirit, its incredible recapturing of the hue and fragrance of a vanished day, its perfect veracity and its transcendent art."
Elsa's Traume, from Lohengrin
When Wagner composed Lohengrin in 1847, he entered a new realm of expression. So new was this world that his contemporaries greeted the work with terrific antagonism, and Wagner 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 contemporary 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:
"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 known as "Elsa's Dream" occurs in the second scene of Act I, in which Elsa of Brabant, accused by Frederick of Telramund of mur?dering 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 har?monies, 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.
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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. Calmly 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 to Act I and Love Death, from Tristan and Isolde
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 goes 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 transcendent 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."
William Ashton EUis, trans., "Life of Richard Wagner," Waiter's Prose Works (London: Kegan, Paul, Trench, Triibner and Co. 1894), VI.
In the Triumph of Death, Gabrieli d'Annunzio, through his hero, eloquently expresses the vivid impression the music of the Prelude made upon him:
In the shadow and silence of the place, a sigh went up from the invisible orchestra, a murmuring voice made the first mournful call of solitary desire, the first and confused anguish in presentiment of the future torture. And that sigh and that moan and that voice mounted from vague suffering to the acuteness of an impetuous cry, telling of the pride of a dream, the anxiety of a superhuman aspiration, the terrible and implacable desire of possession. With a devouring fury, like a flame bursting from a bottomless abyss, the desire dilated, agitated, enflamed, always higher, always higher . . . The intoxication of the melodi?ous flame embraced everything; everything sovereign in the world vibrated passionately in the immense ravishment, exhaled its joy and most hidden sorrow, while it was sublimated and consumed. But, suddenly, the efforts of resistance, the cholers of a battle, shuddered and rumbled in the flight of that stormy ascension; and that great flame sank and died . . . In the shadow and silence of the place, in the shadow and silence of every soul, a sigh arose from the Mystic Gulf, a broken voice told of the sadness of eternal solitude. . . . ?
Excerpts from Gdtterddmmerung
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 inspiration. Nothing else in music evidences such tremendous sweep of imagination, such comprehensive conception, so unparalleled 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.t
The following descriptions are also by Lawrence Gilman:
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 Gdtterddmmerung, 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 Gdtterddmmerung: 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 war-horse, "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
Gabrieli d'Annunzio, Triumph of Death (Boston: Page & Co., 1917).
f 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 Mcistcrsinger were written during this period.
t Lawrence Gilman, Wagner's Operas (New York: Farrar and Rinehart, 1937).
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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 Gdtterddmmerung. 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.
Siegfried's Death and 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 Briinnhilde. Siegfried resumes his marvelous tale, describing with gusto his pursuit of the guiding Forest-Bird, his finding of Briinnhilde 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 Briinnhilde.
Siegfried sinks back and dies; and for a few moments the vassals and war?riors 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 a place for him at his board among the warriors."
Brunnhilde: Immolation and Closdjc Scene
This great scene, the finale of Gdtterddmmerung, 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 Gdtterddmmerung--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, Brunnhilde, 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, Brunnhilde 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 "Redemp?tion 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 grad?ually 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 unheard of:
and yet to all oaths,
to every bargain,
to faithfulest love, none has been so untrue I Know you how it was so
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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 I Know I not now, what thou wouldst
All things, all things
All I now know:
Nought is hidden; all is clear to me here I
Fitly thy ravens
take to their pinions; with tidings feared and hoped for, hence to their home they shall go. Rest thee, rest thee, 0 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!
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 1 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 I 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!
Greeting to him I 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.)
Friday Evening, May 5
Joan of Arc at the Stake............................Honegger
Arthur Honegger was born March 10, 1892 at Le Havre, France; died November 27, 1955, at Paris.
After the end of the First World War, a group of young avant-garde com?posers, rebelling against the rich and wandering chromaticism of Cesar Franck and wearying of the vagueness and evanescence of Debussy, (who they declared had "drawn French music into an impasse" with his glamorous veiled dis?sonances,) grouped themselves together as the Sociiti des nouveaux jeunes. It included Arthur Honegger, Darius Milhaud, Francois Poulenc, Germaine Tailleferre, Louis Durey, and Georges Auric. They were publicly recognized in an article appearing in Comoedia, January 16, 1920, by Henri Collet, who referred to them as Les Six, "an inseparable group who by a magnificent and voluntary return to simplicity have brought about a renaissance of French music." The only thing they really had in common as artists was the patronage of Eric Satie and Jean Cocteau and a desire to react violently against the pastel music of the Impressionists and the elaborate and involved grandiose style of late Romanticism, which they opposed with a music that was direct, clean-cut, witty, and for its time sophisticated. They were active in the day of the "fu?turists" and "cubists" in painting, a time of innovation, ridicule, and violent disputes in aesthetic matters. Actually they were quite independent of each other artistically. Of the six, only Honegger, Milhaud, and Poulenc achieved international recognition, and certainly each of these strongly individual com?posers maintained a high degree of stylistic independence throughout his career.
Honegger began to compose in an anarchic period (1917-24), a time when young composers found themselves in an artistic vacuum. The long steady tradition of Romanticism had spent its strength but no new impulse had taken its place. In France, Claude Debussy had both opposed and, in a way, brought it to fruition, but by 1915 his impressive work was finished. He died in 1918. Les Six blithely ignored the problems of composition inherited from him and the late Romanticists. In their gay, trivial, and often impertinent music they scorned all tradition. Behind their disrespect for the "presumptuous com?poser" of the past and his musical conventions was no doubt a fear that emanated from the fact that they found themselves lost and wandering in an artistic wasteland. "Atonality," "Twelve-tone technique," "Quarter-tone technique," "Barbarism," "Brutism," "Futurism," "Machine music," "Gebrauchtsmusik" were some of the sign posts that led nowhere. After so varied and futile an attempt to find a new path to the future, the name J. S. Bach finally pointed the way. It dispelled fear, curtailed sensationalism, and began a trend toward serious
He produced his first important work, the richly exuberant Quartet for Strings in 1917.
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endeavor and constructive thought. In turning back before advancing, in the music of the pre-Bach and Bach periods, composers found direction again. Neo-classicism was anticipated by Ferruccio Busoni (1866-1924) and finally estab?lished by Igor Stravinsky (Octet for Wind Instruments, 1923; Piano Concerto, 1924; opera-oratorio Oedipus Rex, 1927; and ballet Apollon Musagetes, 1928), Paul Hindemith, Alfred Casella, Francesco Malipiero, and Walter Piston. Directives of the period are reflected in a letter of Albert Roussel. "The ten?dencies of contemporary music," he wrote in 1926, "indicate a return to clearer, sharper lines, more precise rhythms, a style more horizontal than vertical; to a certain brutality, at times, in the means of expression--in contrast with the subtle elegance and vaporous atmosphere of the preceding period [Debussy and Impressionism]; to a more attentive and sympathetic attitude toward the robust frankness of Bach or Handel; in short a return, in spite of appearances, and with a freer though still somewhat hesitating language, to the traditions of the classics."
On the whole, Honnegger's music, with its powerful construction, rich polyphony, vigorous rhythms, and transparent texture, reflected a return to the objectivity and formal beauty of the classical period. Although he rose to fame as a member of Les Six, he was from the beginning, in spite of the shock appeal of some of his early works, a classicist at heart, and his position in rela?tionship to this sensational and overpublicized group was always clearly defined. In the very year of its formation, Honegger wrote to the critic of La Victoire (September, 1920), "I attach great importance to the architecture of music, and would not like to see it sacrificed to considerations of a literary or pictorial order. . . My great model is J. S. Bach. .. I do not, like certain anti-impressionist musicians, seek a return to harmonic simplicity. On the contrary, I feel we should use the harmonic materials created by the school which preceeded us [Wagner and Debussy] but that we should use them in a different way."f
Honegger's background was, in truth, largely conservative. As a pupil of the Paris Conservatory (after earlier work in Le Havre and Zurich), he studied composition with Andre Gedalge and Charles Widor, orchestration with Vincent d'Indy. The essentially traditional training received from these masters he accepted without revolt. It enabled him to steer a steady course through the confusing cross currents that often proved destructive to his contemporaries. Identifying himself early with the movement toward the classics, he used Bach and Mozart as models. But unlike his Parisian contemporaries, he dared to respect Bee?thoven, Brahms, and Wagner, while admiring Debussy and Ravel and avidly studying the scores of Richard Strauss and Schoenberg. The result was that he amalgamated classical, romantic, and modern tendencies, unwittingly blending French restraint and clarity harmoniously with the symphonic torrent and vigor of the late German romantic composers. From Bach he acquired a sense for colossal, yet succinct form; from Mozart an exquisite and delicate orches?tration; from Beethoven and Brahms an urgency and profundity of expression;
Nadia Boulanger, "Modern French Music," Rice Institute Pamphlet (Vol. 13, April 1926), p. S1-S2. t Ibid. p. 147-48.
and from Wagner a realization of the sensual potentialities of music. All these composers had tremendous influence upon him as a maturing young student. The catholicity of his culture saved him from sinking into the morass of banality around him. He approached every new idiom with caution, never per?mitting noncommunicative gulfs between himself and his audience; was never the ivory tower artist, remote and aloof, preoccupied with scholastic theories. He rose above the cold objectivity that characterized the music of those about him. His rich, diversified, and powerful voice is nowhere more evident than in Joart of Arc at the Stake, a work of stunning effectiveness that has gained steadily in stature.
This work, often designated as a "dramatic oratorio," is in truth an impres?sive compound of opera, oratorio, cantata, passion play, and choral symphony. Its balanced blend of music, spoken dialogue, dialogue with musical background, choruses, choral readings, spoken narrative, and solos render it a completely unique phenomenon in the musical output of the twentieth century. Its kaleido?scopic music, underlining every moment of the intense and complicated poem, constantly evokes a vast panorama of shifting moods, yet remains, in spite of all the other elements, the dominating art. It not only reflects every changing aspect of the text, but often illuminates obstruse passages in the poem which presuppose detailed knowledge of Joan's life and the history of her times.
Honegger always attached great importance to the texts of his vocal works. He never set a mediocre poem to music, yet, like all great vocal composers, he subjected the poem unequivocally to his will. "I demand of a poem," he wrote, "that it should provide me [the composer] with a subject and the elements of musical construction equivalent to its literary construction." To set an ordinary poetic text to music is a challenging adventure; to create a musical setting for a poem of such complexity, psychological penetration, and abstruse symbolism as Claudel's Jeanne a"Arc is hazardous. To attempt to merge spoken and sung parts, and to ask the speaking voice to hold its own against an orchestra and choral music has defeated most composers who have attempted it. Although Honegger overwhelms Joan at times, on the whole, he has met the challenge with distinction. His score unfolds with directness and compelling urgency, intensify?ing continuously the dramatic action.
Joan of Arc at the Stake was completed December 24, 1935. It was first performed at Basle, May 12, 1938 with Ida Rubinstein, to whom it was dedicated, appearing as Joan. On January 1, 1948, the work received its American premiere with the Boston Symphony under the direction of Charles Munch with Vera Zorina in the title part.
For a performance given in Brussels in 1946, Roger Secretain supplied the fol?lowing notes:
It would appear that the vocation of Mme Ida Rubinstein is the personification of martyrdom. She, who has dedicated her life to Beauty, once gave an unforgettable per-
Willy Tappolct, "Honegger and His Recent Works," Monthly Musical Record, LXXVI (May 1946).
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formance of Debussy's St. Sebastian. Today, she is enthralled by Jeanne d'Arc, who, by some secret communication, offers her the aesthetic side of sanctity. And her interpretation is inspired. The work which she imagined, she placed in Honegger's hands to translate into music, with the care of one executing a sacred vow. Honegger, inventor of rhythms, who has created astonishing plastic images of modern life, here reawakens the oratorio from its sleep of death, and rouses it into the company of masterpieces. The remaining problem was to choose the poet, someone noted for his splendid, noble work, for enlightened catholic dramaturgy. And this poet, Paul Claudel, accepted the task.
Claudel familiarized himself with the old "mystery" plays which spoke of the redemp?tion and salvation which he believes have a permanent place in the world today; and has been influenced by Rimbaud to present by his verbal genius "the physical impression of the supernatural." Inwardly, he listened to the voice of Jeanne, at whose slightest mani?festation he was carried away into the mechanism of voices and symbols.
The work which we are now to hear was first presented in an unusual dramatic form, on two separate stages. From the beginning to the end of the spectacle, Jeanne is seen fastened to the stake. Her bonds permit her to make the Sign of the Cross only with difficulty --this sign, which, Claudel says, "is the development of the four cardinal points of the human race. . . which is also the quartering of Jeanne between her earthly destiny and her divine vocation," The cross is the struggle between earth and heaven. But Jeanne never flinches for a moment before the death which will clearly be conquered at last--at last convinced. She obeys the injunction of the Virgin, who, from the top of the pillar, conjures her to let herself be embraced by her "Brother Fire" ... to let herself be drawn into heaven.
As well as Jeanne's stake--symbol of the final sacrifice, where she stands immovably throughout the oratorio (also called by the author "mimodrame")--one can see the unfolding of various images of Jeanne's life, as through Jeanne's own eyes. This synthetic vision typifies the genius of Claudel. Through his function as poet, he sets the action in the past as well as the present. She is a presence simultaneously at all corners of the earth, in posses?sion of time and space, exposed to all earthly temptation. The hour has come for this sublime heroine, he says, "to understand what she has done; to utter the supreme Yes I"
Then the dramatic procession begins; while the gentle Dominican opens the book of her life, surrealist shapes take form, escorted by celestial voices. There is room for everyone in Jeanne's life, as there is also in the poetic universe of the poet. The spiritual has its roots in the living. Nobody has so well glorified the concrete, nor set earthly reality in such words, nor used words so plain, so varied, so carnal; nobody has represented so abundantly the animation of the feeling world. The populace is shown in burlesque joy, in gross liveliness, in malice or cruel irony, in charity or prayer. The drama is buffoonery as well as tragedy. Jeanne sees them come, crowned with the heads of the Pig, the Serpent and the Ass. . . the "juridical animals," the infernal Sorbonnards, whose ferocity is exemplified by bestial masks under the hood and mitre. Next appear the Kings--Pride, Wickedness, and Avarice; the Queens--Lust, Stupidity, Bombast; the vulgar Knaves--Bedford, de Chartres, de Flavy. The pack of cards is thus personified for her, the game derisive and vile they play before her, the innocent pawn.
But there are also the Saints. The two bells of Saint Marguerite and Saint Catherine ring along the road to Rheims. And before the trumpets of the royal procession cease re?sounding, two truculent giants, the Picard Heurtebise and the Burgundian Barrel Woman, hold a festival in a bacchanalian scene celebrating the reconciliation of the two provinces. Then Jeanne rediscovers the Lorraine of her infancy, hearing the song, "Trimazo." The miracle again is present, logical and natural. She confides in Dominique, It is the lime-tree before my father's house, like a tall preacher in a white surplice in the light of the moon, who explained it all to me. At this moment, the inner conflict is resumed, ending in flames of faith, hope, and charity. For, as the final chorus says, Here on earth can be no greater love than to lay down a life for a friend.i
'Paul Claudel (1868-1955), a noted diplomat, served as French ambassador to the United States. He is recognized as one of the finest mystic poets and dramatists of his time.
tProgram notes of New York Philharmonic Society of New York, January 1 and 2, 1938.
The following is an English translation by Dennis Arundell. Because of the complexity of this score, the following text does not indicate repetitions of words or parts sounding simultaneously.
Chorus and spoken interjections
The inevitability of Joan's tragic fate is sounded in Claudel's prologue. Honegger's orchestral music creates an atmosphere of doom, as the chorus and speaking voices utter incoherent but suggestive fragments.
Chorus--Great darkness! And all France was without form and void, and a great darkness was upon the face of the whole kingdom, and the Spirit of God, finding no place where to rest, looked down on the chaos of passions and of creeds, on the chaos of ideals and of passions and of consciences, and a great darkness was upon the face of the whole kingdom, and the Spirit of God looked down on the chaos of passions and of creeds, great darkness!
Soprano--From out the deep to Thee I cry, to Thee I lift my soul, O Lord Sa?viour. Ah Saviour if Thou do come too late, O Lord, who then shall stand against the Evil man
Chorus--And all France was without form and void and a great darkness was upon the face of the kingdom. Lord from the lion's mouth and from the power of the unicorns, save us all, Eli Fortis Ischyros.
A Voice--In France there was a girl whose name was Joan.
Chorus--In France there was a girl whose name was Joan, Who ever did hear tell of so fine a story Who'd ever dare to confess he heard the like. In France there was a girl whose name was Joan. Can it be the world could e're be born in but a day Is there a nation engendered one and all in a single hour Though deep the water floods do flow, I lifted up my soul to Thee, O Lord!
A Voice--There was a girl whose name was Joan.
Chorus--Daughter of God, way away.
A Voice--Is France to be torn in two for-evermore "Whatever God hath joined together, let no man put asunder."
Chorus--Daughter of God way away. This love uniting us all to our brethren. Who! Who can be so strong as to tear it from our hearts Not brutality nor dis?couraging report nor deception nor yet high achievement, no, nor deep despair.
A Voice--There was a child whose name was Joan.
Chorus--And all France was without form and void and a great darkness was upon the face of all the kingdom.
A Voice--There was a maid whose name was Joan.
The Voices of Heaven
The howling of a dog is heard in the night. Gongs and muted bass drum, and a humming chorus establish a feeling of eeriness and mysticism. At the end, the name "Joan" is quietly uttered three times.
Scene II The Book
Joan is chained to the stake at the beginning of the work. She is startled as she hears her name called by Dominic. (Dominic is not a part of the historical record, but a means of presenting the events that lead up to Joan's capture.) He reads to her from the record of the trial. The gentle Dominican assures the deified Joan that he is different from those, who like him, wore the white robe and black scapular, but, in persecuting her, defiled the holy vestments. He confides to her that he has been sent from heaven to read her from a book. He recalls the events of her life on earth; her prosecution and martyrdom.
Joan--Who calls me Who is calling me Who said Joan
Brother Dominic--Do you not know me
Permission to reprint this text granted by G. Ricordi and Company.
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Joan--I know the Dominican habit, the white robe and the black coat.
Brother Dominic--My habit of white that all my brethren from Paris and from Rouen did so defile that nothing can cleanse it.
Joan--O Brother Dominic, the Grace of God and the blood of this innocent girl will suffice.
Brother Dominic--O Joan, my sister, so you do know me now
Joan--My brother, brother Dominic, we are creatures of one fleece. And I but one of the flock that knows the shepherd's voice.
Brother Dominic--Since my brethren and my sons have betrayed me, since those who should have been the mighty voice of Truth have set themselves against God, your hangmen and your prosecutors, Joan. . . . Since that the Word 'twixt wicked meddling hands is jargon made, Tis Dom?inic himself, I, Dominic, come down from heaven before you with this book.
Joan--Dominic, my brother Dominic, all this time I have seen so many pens at work around me."
Brother Dominic--All that did make a book.
Joan--That terrible voice which ques?tioned me. all those pens writing incessantly --all those pens grating on partchment. All that did make a book. All that did make a book, and I, I cannot read.
Brother Dominic--To understand the book I bring you, there is no need to know your A B C's. This bundle of words these butchers of Limoges have knotted together in dog-latin of Fouarre, all the proceedings they have kneaded in the lingo of Cou-tances, the Angels for all time to come have translated into heaven.
Joan--Read then, Brother, for me, in the name of the Lord; and III follow, as you read.
Brother Dominic;--In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, World without end.
Chorus--World without end. (Here Joan makes the sign of the Cross with her chained hands.)
The Voices of the Earth
Dominic reads the charges hurled at Joan during her trial--"heretic," "sorcer?ess," "apostate," "prostitute," "enemy of God," "enemy of the people," "let her be killed, burned." She is at first puzzled that the priests, whom she held in veneration, and the people, whom she loved, should scorn her and wish her dead. As the mem?ory of the events of her trial momentarily return, she once more feels the agony of the flames. Dominic assures her that her tormentors were not true ministers of God, but beasts in the form of men.
Brother Dominic--Joan! Joan! Joan! Heretic, sorceress, apostate, enemy of God, enemy of King, enemy of Country, prison her, kill her, burn her.
Joan--Heretic, sorceress, apostate, O Brother Dominic! All that is Joan of Arc It it true Am I all that
Basses--Heretic, sorceress, apostate.
Joan--But why These priests I held in reverence, these poor little people I loved. Their Joan, their poor little child who was one of them, why do they want to bum her Do they want to burn me alive
Chorus--Curse her. Let's prison her, let us kill, let us burn her. Joan!
Brother Dominic--You've hearkened to the voices from the heavens, and now give ear to what they've made of them below; give ear to what is left of them. Give ear to the voices of the earth!
Bass Solo--Afulier spiritum pythonis habens, anima quoe declinaverit ad magos et ariolos et jornicata juerit cum eis. (This woman has the soul of a python! She has preferred, she has sought necromancers, soothsayers, magicians; yes, she has even delivered her body to their lust!
Bass Solo--Ponam, ponam, jaciem meant contra earn et interficiam earn de tnrdio populi mei. (I will turn my face against her, I will destroy, I will obliterate her from the midst of my people.)
Chorus--Lex estl (It is the law I)
Latin passages, translated by Charles O'Connell, are taken from the Program Notes of the Philadelphia Orchestra, November 14, 1952. The translator gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the Rev. William E. Campbell, Ph.D., LL.D., of the faculty of Rosemont College.
Chorus--Hie, hie, hie, hie, hie est Jo?anna. Hie est Joanna peccatrix Pereatl (Insults which accuse Joan of perversion and harlotry; let her die!)
Tenor Solo--Slrygal Haeretical Relap-sal Malts artibus addicta! Inimica regis el populil Proslibulum injernil Instrumentum Satanael (Harlot! Heretic! Apostate! Maker of black magic! Instrument of evil arts! Enemy of king and people!)
Chorus--Morte moriatur! Comburatur Igne! (Burn her alive!)
Joan--Tis true. Tis true. I remember. The fire that burns, the smoke that chokes; O the intolerable pains!! Is it true I did so much harm Is it true you detested her so much, your poor Joan
Brother Dominic--No, Joan, these are not priests who have condemned you. When these beasts gather round you, with rage in their hearts, and slobber on their jowls, these priests, these men of politics, The Angel of Judgment that holds the scales aloft with one blow will tear down from their heads and their shoulders the mitre, the frock, and the cowl. (Judges enter). Look, here they are with hair cropped like convicts! Let barbers cut their hair, as suits them well! Now must Joan, as her sisters long ago, in the arena of Rome, be given up to the beasts. The chosen of God, the Saint of God, for, look, these are no priests, these are no mortal men, these are but beasts who come to judge her.
Joan Given Up to the Beasts
The court is called to order. The Tiger, the Fox, and the Serpent are summoned, but do not appear. Porcus the Pig (Cauchon, Bishop of Beauvais, who actually presided at the trial) pompously volunteers his services, and the crowd praises him in Latin. The clerk (spoken) calk the jury, whereupon bleating is heard in the chorus. It is the voice of the sheep (those who con?cur with the decisions of their superiors out of fear). The Ass serves as court recorder. Joan is asked if she is in league with the devil. She denies she is, but the Ass is instructed to record an affirmative answer.
The Herald--The court. Pray be silent. Who shall be the president
'Cochon. French for pig.
The Usher--The Tiger!
The Herald--The Tiger sends apologies.
The Herald--The Fox!
The Usher--The Fox says he is indis?posed.
The Herald--The Serpent!
The Usher--The Serpent is hissing pro?tests alone in a pit.
The Herald--But who then Is there no one for president
Chorus--But who then See! See there! Here is someone now I
The Usher--Who is it, pray, who vol?unteers to judge Joan of Arc
Porcus--Yah! I volunteer to judge this Joan of Arc.
The Usher--Who may you be What is your family name
Porcus--Porcus. My name is Cochon. Yah! They call me porker, my name is Porcus.
Chorus--Sit Porcus! praeses noster. Non habemus alium judicem nisi Porcum. Vivat et semper vivat. Porcus porcorum! Dignus est praesidere in nostro praeclaro corporet Sicut ilium inter spinas ita formosus isle intercucullos. Quis enim dedit nobis pa-tatas Ceciderunt stellae de coelo et factae sunt pro nobis patatae Quis judex sicut Porcus Dominus noster Ecce quam bonum et jucundum est habitare fratres in unum omnes comedentes patatas. Hie est Nasus inter nasos. Dijudicans truphas et patatas. Sternutatio ejus splendor ignis Porcus por?corum. Vivat et semper vivat. Porcus praeses noster! Porcus porcorum! (Porcus! Porcus! We will have no other judge than Porcus the pig! Life, long life to Porcus, pig of pigs! Worthy he is, worthy indeed is he to take the chair and preside over this body. Conspicuously worthy is Porcus, conspicuous and beautiful as a lily among the briars, he, the most beautiful of all scoundrels. Who but he has been provid?ing us with sweet potatoes Where will you find a judge like unto our judge, the Lord Pig Mark you, how good and how pleasant it is when brothers live in amity eating their sweet potatoes. Here is a Nose among noses, choosing and rooting up our truffles and our crackles like a conflagration. Life, long life to our presi-
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dent judge Porcus, this pig of pigs, our leader, Porcus, Porcus. Porcus.)
The Usher--And who will be the jury
Chorus--Beh! Beh! Beh !
The Usher--What are you called
Chorus--Ego nominor Peeeeeeecus. (Sheep)
The Usher--Take your places right and left and all receive your badges of honor. And last of all where is the recorder
The Ass--It's me, the ass!
Chorus--(A huge burst of laughter.) Hail Sir Donkey, sing away. Hee Haw. Loads of hay for you today. Lip so lovely. Pails of oats before you lay. Lip so lovely, sulky stay. Hee Haw.
Porcus--Let the prisoner appear. Joan, successit Mi procclaro tribunali, that means to say that after striving long, this wise illustrious Tribunal has at length con?trived by every means, now subtle and now severe, by patient and ingenious questionings, both physical and mental, to drag out the truth from the depths of wandering mind and from stubborn heart.
The Herald--Silence I
Porcus--And now it has well pleased the King of England and of France, our dear and lawful sovereign, to summon you to this place to hear your lawful sentence. Now therefore, list with what great care in all its mercy, this Court, so wise, illustrious, where I, Cochon, do preside, is now re?solved to disencumber you, with aid of the pure flame of fire, from this black demon by whom you are so criminally entangled. But, first of all, we'd hear yet once again from your own lips that most solemn con?fession that's needful for the safety of our conscience. On your knees. Joanna; filia Romeae, faterisse et confiteris te tenerri-mam puellam non naturali auxilio victoriam de manibus Regis Nostri. Evulsisae et fortes exercitus ejus sincut paleam in probrosissi-mam fugam verisse (Jeanne, daughter of Rome, do you admit and confess that you, a mere girl, by means of unnatural powers did snatch away victory from the grasp of our king [Satin], and put his mighty forces to shameful flight, driving them like chaff before the wind)
The Ass--Joan, do you confess it's not by your own strength and natural means that you overcame the Englishmen
Joan--I confess it.
Porcus--Record it. Joanna, filia Ronteae, faterisme et confiteris te auxilio Diaboli po-tentissimi. Alapum dedisse Regi Nostro et fortes exercittts ejus in probrossimam fugam versisse (Joan, do you confess that it was by the help of the Devil, our almighty Lord, that you did what you did)
The Ass--(translating from the Latin) Joan, do you confess it was by the help of the Devil, our almighty Lord--
Porcus--Sit down. What imbeciles! Sit down, in the Devil's name. Joan, do you confess it was by the help of the Devil you did all that you did
Joan--I say no.
Porcus--What did she say
The Ass--She says yes.
Porcus--Write down she says yes.
Porcus--And now its time I consult the bench. Pecus, quid dicis (Sheep, what do you say)
The Ass--Habemus cosfxtenlem. (We have the guilty one.)
Porcus--Docti et sancti fratres, sic vobis justum et aequum didelur ut Joanna, filia Romae, stryga, morte condemnatur (Learned and holy brethren, does it seem just and condign to you that this, Joan, daughter of Rome and a prostitute, should be condemned to death)
Chorus--Burn the Strumpet.
Porcus--Fiat voluntas Regis Nostril Audivistis sententiam. Stryga! Haeretical Relapsa! (Let the Kings's will be done. You have heard the verdict. Strumpet!)
Chorus--Pereatt (Let her die!)
Porcus--Enemy of the King and of all humanity!
Porcus--Joanna Stryga, filia Romae t (Joan Strumpet, daughter of Rome!)
Chorus--Combwator ignel (Burn her alive!)
Scene V Joan at the Stake
Amid insistent accusations, Joan asks Dominic what she has done to deserve them. He explains that her accusers them?selves worship the Devil and are deaf to the voices of her Angels. He tries to show
her that she is a pawn in a card game in?vented by a mad king.
Joan--What dog is that howling in the night
Brother Dominic--That is no dog, that's Yblis in his despair howling alone in the depths of hell.
Joan--(and basses) Heretic, Sorceress! Apostate! Barbarian!
Joan--It is I, Joan, that am all that. The Church and the priests, everyone in the world who is respectable and capable and wise, with one voice they condemn me. Tell me, Brother Dominic, what have I done Read the book to me.
Brother Dominic--All the great men who have condemned you, doctors, schol?ars, sluggards, blockhead, scatterbrain, hunchback, hold firm belief in the Devil, but will never believe in God. The Devil Why, that's real. The Angels That is absurd. The Devil, whom you loathe, gave you aid. The Angels whom you invoked, they did nothing. Such is the wisdom of the Faculty, famous doctors who wrinkle their noses at the Pope.
Joan--But I, the poor shepherd-girl from Domremy, how have I come to this pass
Brother Dominic--You have come to this by a game of cards.
Joan--What is that, the game of cards
Brother Dominic--They are going to explain.
The Kings, or the Invention of the Game of Cards
This section is full of symbolic complex?ity. In general it refers to the inconsistency of Charles VII in his dealings with the King of England through the Duke of Burgundy. The King of France and his Queen, Her Majesty, Ignorance, the King of England and Her Majesty, Pride, and the Duke of Burgundy and Her Majesty. Avarice, and a fourth King, Death and his spouse, Her Majesty, Lust, engage in a card game. As the game progresses, the Kings change places, but their queens do not. The Jacks (Duke of Bedford; John of Luxembourg, Reynold of Chartres, William of Flavy) enter and control the game, which is of course that of war with England in which Burgundy joins England and delivers Joan into their hands. Even the loosers fill their
pockets with money. As William of Flavy leaves the company, he pays his debt by forfeiting Joan.
Herald I--Now in a pack of cards, the kings are four, four the queens, four the knaves as well.
Herald II--Not including numbers up to seven.
Herald I--And when you've finished off the game, you'll find the Kings have changed their places.
Herald II--The one that was with South is now with North.
Herald I--That one that was up with East is down with West. They're changing.
Herald II--Yet the Queens, they do not dream of changing places, they're always on the spot.
Herald I--Now let their Majesties ap?pear!
Herald III--The King of France (en?trance of the king); Her Majesty Stupidity (entrance of Stupidity); The King of Eng?land (entrance of the king), Her Majesty Bombast (entrance of Bombast); The Duke of Burgundy (entrance of the Duke); Her Majesty Avarice (entrance of Avarice).
Herald II--Who can be the fourth and final King
Herald I--In such a game of cards a silent dummy is the fourth.
Death--(Entrance of death)
Herald I--And after him there now comes his spouse and faithful, loving con?sort, she who shares the joys of his bed.
Herald III--Her Majesty Lascivious-ness (entrance Lasciviousness).
Herald I--The Kings all change their places but the Queens, Her Majesty Bom?bast, Her Majesty Stupidity, Her Majesty Avarice, Her Majesty Lasciviousness, Their Majesties do never change their places, they are always with us here.
Herald II--But those that do actually play every game never are those the kings or the queens, always they're the Knaves.
Herald I--Let all the Knaves now ap?pear!
Herald III--His Grace, the Duke of Bedford; His Highness, John of Luxem?burg; His Lordship, Reynold of Chartres; William of Flavy.
Joan--Tis he who dropped the port?cullis behind me at Compiegne.
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Herald I--Now start to play and let three games decide.
Reynold of Chartres: I have lost, I mean to say that I have won.
Bedford--I have won, I mean to say that I have lost.
William of Flavy--The highest card.
John of Luxemburg--I trump!
Reynold of Chartres--I have won.
Duke of Bedford--I have lost.
William of Flavy--I have lost and I've my pocket full of money.
Jonx of Luxemburg--I have won and I've my pocket full of money.
William Flavy--Gentlemen, I deliver you Joan of Arc, the maid.
Reynold--Good morning to you, Gen?tlemen, here's to when next we meet!
Scene VII Catherine and Margaret
In this scene the voices of her saints speak to Joan who seems to exist in both present and past. Bells toll in the night. They are bells of death. Joan remembers the voices of her saints, Catherine and Margaret. Dominic is unable to see or hear them. She recalls their insignia on the banner she carried into battle and how they urged her to escort the king in triumph to France. She asks for her sword.
Joan--What bells are those chiming in the night
Brother Dominic--The bells that toll a death.
Joan--And call all kind souls to pray for Joan of Arc. Thank you! good bells. My sisters, my friends! My voices which had become silent--there, they are speaking again!
Brother Dominic--The bell of black and the bell of white.
Joan--Catherine and Margaret. I know them well! 'Tis Catherine who says the "De Profundis" and it is Margaret all blue and white in heaven who says. "Father, Mother!" Just as I heard them long ago in Domremy. (voices, sung). My Catherine and my Margaret.
Catherine--Out of the depths I cry to Thee, O Lord. Free me, Lord, from the
mouth of the Lion when You shall come to judge the world through fire.
Margaret--(sung) Spera, spira, Jesus, Marie.
Continue Joan-... my Catherine and my Margaret! Jesus! Mary! I've written these two names on my lovely banner of blue and white. Jesus! Mary I Catherine! Margaret! And me, that little girl among nettles and buttercup fields, so wonder-struck, who forgot to eat her piece of bread-and-butter.
Margaret-] Joan, Daughter of God!
Catherine-J Way away!
Joan--I go, I go. As you order. Where is my trusty sword. I go, I go. It's done. He is mine. I lead his charger by the bridle. I escort him the gentlest of Kings. I'm bring?ing him back across the forest, I am bring?ing him back in all triumph."
Margaret and Catherine (with Joan above)--Joan, Take the King, Escort him to France in triumph.
The King Sets Out for Rheims
The populace celebrates the reconciliation of the French provinces (folk tunes, dance rhythms). The giant Heurtebise, Grinder Trusty (the People of Picardy) Mother of Barrels, La Mere aux Tonneaux (the People of Burgundy) carouse in an earthly man?ner and are upbraided by a clerk for defiling Christmas Eve, while their king is being led by Joan to Rheims to be blessed. She alone is saving and uniting her country. "Joan, Joan," Dominic exclaims, "is it for a king of the flesh that you have given your virgin blood"
Chorus--Would you like to live on clover Would you like a supper fine When is our journey over. When come we to the shrine
Boys Choir and Chorus--Would you like to live on clover Would you like a supper fine When is our journey over When come we to the shrine La, la, la! Grinder Trusty! Clean or dusty. Grinder Trusty! Finds that the sacks of flour grow fewer. Grinder Trusty, lusty wooer, Thrifty wife, what have you done to her Muffed all up in Holland gown, Silly clown. His yellowing corn despising, he offers for wine his prizing. Grinder Trusty, lusty wooer,
thrifty wife, what have you done to her Look to cheer us, Mother of Barrels, never failing, look to cheer us, hither sailing. Wine so red and wine so white. Look! To cheer us bold and bright. Grinder Trusty, Lusty wooer, Thrifty wife, a welcome to her. Full of beer from every brewer, Now we've got the wine to try. Grinder Trusty, lusty wooer, thrifty wife, a welcome to her. Grinder Trusty you and I needn't e'er again be dry. Grinder Trusty by and by. Spite of pimples on the tongue, Grinder Trusty by and by You'll every quinsy defy. Grinder Trusty, lusty wooer, thrifty wife, a welcome to her.
Grinder Trusty--Mother of Barrels, It's a long time since I've seen you.
Mother of Barrels--Grinder Trusty, husband of what a sour face, mine, your face is mighty sour, poor man, and a long time since I've seen you.
Grinder Trusty--Mrs. Barrels, I've brought you a lovely cake, the best for many a mile.
Mother of Barrels--Grinder Trusty, who bends with every breeze. I've brought you something to keep you still awhile.
Grinder Trusty--Barrels, my darling, Good bread of France and good wine of France from now on we must no longer be apart.
Mother of Barrels--Well spoken Grinder Trusty, my dear, let me take you in my arms. Here's to Grinder Trusty! Here's to the Mother of Barrels!
Chorus and Boys Choir--Would you like to live on clover, would you like a supper fine When is our journey over When come we to the shrine
The Clerk--Peasants, Wretches, Chur?lish and boorish bumpkins! Have you in?deed no shame, to make merry together like heathens this holy Christmas Eve, while our Lord the King repairs to Rheims for consecration there by Angels' hands
A Peasant--And isn't this the time then to take a little sip, now Grinder Trusty's found once more our little Johnny Grape And now that half of all France has found the other half with every joy of heart
The Clerk--Then come, my children. Gather round me here, and we'll all sing together that lovely hymn in purest Latin that I have taught you. The earth has spread a mighty carpet of snow under the
feet of our Lord, the King. And all of us, from the Loire to Rheims, must stretch a mighty carpet of our prayers.
The Clerk--Aspiciens a longe. You do know it is the Jewish people waiting the Messiah, as we do wait our Lord the King.
The Clerk--Aspiciens a longe. Gazing far off, down there in the distance, the hand shading the eyes and all is filled with darkness and confusion.
Chorus--Aspiciens a longe, Ecce video Dei Potentiam venientem. Et nebulam lo-tam terram tegentem. (Looking from a distance, behold, you shall see the coming power of God. And covering the world with word. Go and preach everywhere to those along your way. Tell us if you are He who is about to rule the people of Israel.
Boys Choir--He obviam ei et dictel
Bass Solo--Nuntia nobis si tu es Ipse.
Chorus--Qui regnaturus es in populo Israel.
Voice of Perrot--There he is, the King.
Chorus--The King of France. The King who goes to Rheims.
The Clerk--Qui regis Israel.
Chorus--Nuntia nobis si tu es ipse. Would you like to live on clover Would you like a supper fine When is our jour?ney over When come we to the shrine
The Clerk--Qui regnaturus es in populo Israel.
Joan--All this I have done!
Brother Dominic--'Tis God. Tis God brought that to pass!
Joan--'Tis God. 'Tis God and with him Joan. The voices did not deceive me. Cath?erine and Margaret, they did not deceive me.
Chorus--Blockhead, sluggard, scatter-brain, hunchback, blockhead. Crookback, declare one and all you are self cheated.
Joan--The King, He didn't want to come and so I led his charger by the bridle.
Chorus--Sorceress. Barbarian. Heretic. Disrupter. Homicide. Apostate. Imposter. Hysteric and Prostitute.
Joan--It is I who did escort him through all France.
Chorus--Pereat Sty gal Pereat Sty gat (Let the harlot die).
Joan--'Tis I did escort him to Rheims I 'Tis I who saved our France! Tis I who united all France, merged every power into
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one single power, so mighty it shall never be divided again.
Chorus--Morte moriatur; Comburatur igne. (Burn her alive.)
Brother Dominic--Joan, Joan, Joan. Was it for an earthly King you gave your maiden blood
Scene IX The Sword of Joan
Joan is possessed by sweet sounds and her visions, and relives the happy days of her youth. The voices of the two saints mingle with the songs of birds, as the stars in the heavens extinguish themselves one by one. Joan remembers her Normandy coun?tryside and her home in Lorraine and un?derstands more clearly than Dominic the meaning of her voices. As they call "Daugh?ter of God," the names "heretic" or "apos?tate" become meaningless. She explains to Dominic that it is the lime tree before her father's house, like a tall preacher in a white surplice in the moonlight, that makes things clear to her. In winter, when everything is bound in frost, it seems like death and the end of everything. And then a robin sings, a wind arises, no one knows from where; warm rain falls on her, she closes her eyes and all is changed. Everything is alive and full of color. You cannot stop the plum trees from blooming, or the cherry trees, before they bear cher?ries. It was in the early morning in spring time that Catherine and Margaret began to speak to her. She mounts her battle horse in May and all France follows her. St. Michael has given her a sword--it is not called "Hate," but "Love." Her chains burst and fall from her. The memory of Rouen and the fire is gone and she stands before God who is "strongest of all." Chil?dren's voices sing that it is the merry month of May.
Joan--I hear St. Margaret there in the sky, in a haze of the sighing of nightingales, and the sweet little twinkling stars, as she rouses them for Matins, put out their lights, first one, and then another.
Brother Dominic--The pages of night, of blood, of ultra-marine, and of purple have shed their leaves 'neath my fingers, and now there remains on the virginal parchment but one initial of gold.
Joan--How beautiful is Normandy all red and pink, all red in the joy, all pink with innocence, as she prepares herself to take Holy Communion with me in the sparkling dew. How beautiful for Joan the Maiden to rise on Heaven in the month of May! How beautiful you are, oh my beautiful Normandy. But, what would you say, Brother Dominic, if Margaret and I could tell you of our Lorraine
Brother Dominic--Tell me then, Joan, for I know there are some things a little maid can well explain to me--to me, who girt with hide and steel and eyes close-shut, did early tred the paths of peni?tence.
Joan--And what can I explain to you, when there are at least a dozen stars still in heaven who know more than I do.
Brother Dominic--Tell me, then about your sword. Is it true that you found your sword--that fear-compelling sword before which the English and Burgundians flew, in a chapel long-decayed
Joan--No, it was not in the ruins of a chapel. It was given to me at Domremy. My banner in my left hand, my sword in my right. Ah! Who could resist me Jesus, Mary! Jesus, Mary!
Catherine--Joan, Joan, Daughter of God, Way away!
Joan--I go. I go quickly. As you order.
Brother Dominic--To whom do you talk like that
Joan--Are you deaf Can you not hear the voices saying: Joan, Daughter of God, Way away.
Margaret and Catherine (intermittent?ly)--Joan!
Joan--Ah! It is no more sorceress they are saying. It is my own Christian name, the name that I was given by my God?parents, Joan.
Margaret and Catherine (intermittent?ly)--Daughter of God, Way away. Joan!
Joan--No longer heretic and apostate, what else I know not, and all these ugly names. It's Daughter of God. How sweet to be the Daughter of God. Nor is it only the saints Catherine and gentle Margaret. It's all mankind united, the living and the dead who cry Daughter of God. Joan, Daughter of God, Way away. Yes, I will go then.
Brother Dominic--But you have not explained the sword.
Joan--But before you can understand the sword, good tonsured brother, you'd have to be a little maid of Lorraine. I can't make of you a little maid of Lorraine. I can't take your hand and lead you along with us to sing in the month of May. Boys Choir--Sing in the May. Joan--Listen to what they're singing. Boys Choir--When I have been o'er field of green, When I have been o'er field of green so fine and tall the corn is seen. And fair and white the hawthorn sheen wel?coming God. Joan--O listen, listen! Boys Choir--Lulling to sleep your pretty babe, Lulling to sleep your pretty babe, May God protect him in his sleep, And in his waking safely keep, Welcoming God. Tis the May, month of May. Tis the merry month of May. A little cake care?fully made. A little egg Henny Penny laid, They're not to fry or give away, But with 'em buy a candle sweet to shed a ray at Mary's feet, Welcoming God.
Joan--You understand now, my brother Dominic Ah me. There was no need for Dunderhead and Scatterbrain to explain it to me. It's the lime-tree before my father's house, like a tall preacher in sur?plice of white in the light of the moon, explained it all to me!
Boys Choir--'Tis the May, month of May. 'Tis the merry month of May.
Brother Dominic--Explain it and I will listen.
Joan--In the days when it's cold . in winter, and the cold and the frost do shackle the world, and you would say that all is dead, and the people are dead with cold, and there is snow and ice over the world, like a sheet . . . and you think that all is dead and that all is ended.
Bass Solo--But then you feel hope again rising up triumphant.
Joan--You think that all is ended, but at that moment there is a robin-redbreast, and he starts to sing.
Margaret and Catherine--Daughter of God, Way away.
Joan--There is a naughty little breeze sprung up from nowhere and it starts to blow. There is some little soft warm rain that starts to fall on you. And then
just time to shut your eyes and to count your "One, Two, Three," and all is changed. Just time to count "One, Two, Three," and all is changed. All is white. All is pink. All is green.
Chorus--Then you feel all of the forest sun warmed start to stir awakening. Then you feel hope again rising up triumphant. Daughter of God, Way away.
Joan--The man who'd forbid the mira-bell-trees to flower'd have to be cunning indeed. The man who'd forbid the cherry-trees to bear cherries, so that all the world is full of red, ripe cherries. My father said he'd have to get up very, very early in the morning. It's then that Catherine and Margaret do start to speak.
Basses--Hunchback. Sluggard. Block?head. Scatterbrain. They all declare you are self-cheated.
Joan--And when Joan in the month of May mounts on her battle-charger, he'd have to be very cunning--the man who'd dare forbid all men of France to march. Listen, do you hear those chains on every side, snapping and splitting apart. Ah! Those chains I've got on my hands do make me laugh. I'll not always have them, sweet?heart. They've seen what Joan could do with a sword. Do you understand it now, this sword St. Michael gave to me That sword. That bright drawn sword. It is not known as Hatred, it is known as Love.
Boys Choir--To you our thanks, Lady, may we pay, To you our thanks, Lady, may we pay, for you were kind to us today. With you may Fortune ever stay, for you did help us on our way, Welcoming God.
Joan--Rouen! Rouen! You did burn Joan of Arc, but I'll be more stronger than you and you'll not always have me, There is hope, and nothing can be stronger.
(Basses--Sluggard, blockhead, scatter-brain, hunchback, Daughter of God, Way away.)
Joan--There is faith, and nothing can be stronger.
Chorus--Now I feel hope again rising up triumphant. Now I feel delight rising up triumphant. Daughter of God, Way away.
Margaret and Catherine--Daughter of God, Way away.
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Joan--There is God! There is God! and nothing can be stronger.
Boys Choir--Tis the May, month of May. Tis the merry month of May.
Scene X Trimazo (May Song)
Joan recites a child's song, singing the phrases.
Joan--A little cake carefully made, A little egg Henny Penny laid, A little tear for Joan! A little prayer for Joan! A lit?tle thought for Joan! They're not to drink and not to eat, but with 'em buy a candle sweet to shed a ray at Mary's feet. 'Tis I will make a pretty candle.
The Burning of Joan of Arc
Once more Joan is conscious of her mar?tyrdom, with love and hate about her. She refuses to recant. She cries, "My peo?ple ! People of France! Is it true, is it true that you want to burn me alive," etc.
The Virgin--I take this holy flame in gladness.
Chorus--So it reads Joan. So it reads sorceress. So it reads disbeliever. Enemy of every creature. Joan of Orleans! No more now of what she so lightly dabbled in. With her was ever discordance. No more now. For she has ever done us ill. Of what she so lightly dabbled in. So it reads Joan. She it is put all the English to flight and she it is only escorted our King to Rheims. Only by the help of Satan. Only by the help of the Lord. No more now! Joan the holy, Joan the maiden. So it reads disbeliever. Although she come from God or from Satan. So it reads.
Joan--But why, my people, people of France. Can it be that you gladly would bum me alive
Chorus--Now praise be to our brother the fire that has wisdom, strength, vigour, ardour, eagerness, all incorruptible! She now awakens as from a dream. Now praise be to our brother the fire that is skillful to tear away the spirit from the flesh and the soul from the ashes.
Joan--And that priest who was here just now holding that book, that I was reading. He's no more, he has left me. He has gone away. He is there no more and I am alone.
The Virgin--Joan. Thou art not alone here.
Joan--I hear a voice up there in the sky that says: Joan, thou art not alone.
Chorus--Joan thou art not alone here. See the people there all crowd below to watch thee! Now praise be to our brother the fire.
Joan--I do not want to die. I'm afraid.
Chorus--She's saying she does not want to die. Saying she's afraid. She's but a poor child after all. She's nothing but a little child! Saying she's afraid.
A Priest--Sign your name! Sign this paper! Confess, confess that you did lie.
Joan--And how could I sign my name when my hands are tied
The Priest--They will take off your chains.
Joan--There are other still stronger chains that prevent me.
The Priest--What other chains still stronger
Joan--Still stronger than chains of iron, the chains of love! Tis love that ties my hands, and prevent me from signing. 'Tis truth that ties my hands preventing me sign my name. I cannot do it. I cannot, cannot lie.
The Virgin--Joan, Joan, then do but trust the fire--and suffer never more.
Chorus--Now all praise to our brother the fire that is pure, living, livening, chas?tening, all invincible, all irresistible, chas?tening, ardent, incorruptible. Now all praise to our brother the fire that restores as he flashes spirit to spirit and ashes to ashes, all that is ashes to earth.
Joan--Mary! Mary, Mother of Heaven Ah! I'm afraid of fire and its pain.
The Virgin--Thou sayst thou art afraid of fire but see now thou hast trod it down.
Joan--So this blazing flame, so hideous. Is this then, is this flame indeed to be my bridal garment
The Virgin--But cannot Joan herself become a glorious flame in the darkness The flesh may die but will death be ever powerful to keep inthrall my daughter Joan
Chorus--Now all praise to our sister flame that is all pure, exultant, eloquent . . .
The Virgin--The fire, how can it ever cease its burning! So this blazing flame
that lights the heart of France! How can it ever cease. How can it ever cease its burning
Chorus--Now praise our sister Saint Joan; for she is holy, upright, vigorous, ardent, eloquent--all invincible, dazzling in glory.
The Virgin, Margaret, and Catherine --Joan, Daughter of God, Come.
Joan--There are still these chains that do prevent me.
Chorus--Now I feel delight arising up triumphant. Now I feel love arising tri?umphant.
Joan--I come. I come. They are broken. They are shattered. There is joy and noth?ing can be stronger. There is love and noth?ing can be stronger. There is God and nothing can be stronger.
Chorus--The chain that fettered Joan to Joan, the chain that fettered soul to flesh.
Boys Choir--Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for a friend.
Chorus--Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for a friend.
Saturday Afternoon, May 6
Overture to Colas Breugnon......Kabalevsky
Dmitri Borisovich Kabalevsky was bom in St. Petersburg, December 30, 1904.
Romain Rolland's novel, Colas Breugnon, Burgundian, is a diary, supposedly written by a sixteenth century craftsman. Like the tales of Till Eulenspiegel it is full of folk qualities, earthy humor, and homespun wit, as well as random anecdotes, and pungent observations on life at the height of the French Renais?sance. From this rather formless material, a libretto was created in 1937 for Kabalevsky's first opera, Colas Breugnon, the Master of Clatnecy. It was pro?duced without success in Leningrad in 1938, despite the fact that the story was used as a vehicle for Communistic propaganda. Its overture, however, became known and admired throughout the world for its magnificent vitality and bril?liant orchestration.
Although Kabalevsky is best known in America as the composer of this exciting work, he has created much music in the Russian nineteenth century tradition. He has written incidental music for plays, for the ballet, and for the movies; three piano concertos; a violin concerto; choral works (The Poem of Struggle; Requiem for Lenin; a cantata, My Great Fatherland; People's Avenger); and four symphonies.f The titles above indicate the strong national?istic inspiration behind Kabalevsky's works.
Aaron Copland was born in Brook?lyn, New York, November 14, 1900.
A little over three decades ago a virile and tremendously active group of composers appeared in America. Among the outstanding names were those of Marc Blitzstein, George Antheil, Roy Harris, Henry Cowell, Randall Thompson, Virgil Thomson, Howard Hanson, Walter Piston, Roger Sessions, and Aaron Copland. These composers energetically espoused the cause of American music, although as individuals they represented every variety of background, attitude, and musical style. Some were mildly conservative, others daringly experimental, but in their enthusiasm and newly awakened nationalistic feeling, they possessed a common goal--to uphold the autonomy of their art, to free it from all the extramusical trappings inherited from nineteenth-century Europe, and to make the world aware that America had come of age musically through the discovery of an idiom that was indigenous to her. According to Roger Sessions, writing in Modern Music in November, 1927, . . . "young men are dreaming of an entirely different kind of music--a music
Kabalevsky's model was Richard Strauss's Till Eulenspiegel.
t The Third Symphony was rearranged as the Requiem lor Lenin in 1933.
which derives its power from forms beautiful and significant by virtue of inherent musical weight, rather than intensity of utterance; a music whose impersonality and self-sufficiency preclude the exotic, which takes its impulse from the realities of a passionate logic, which in the authentic freshness of its moods is the reverse of the ironic, and in its very aloofness from the con?crete preoccupations of life, strives rather to contribute form, design, a vision of order and harmony."
The most authoritative voice among this group was that of Aaron Copland. The volume and importance of his output and his diversified activity in the world of American music reached into the realms of radio, theater, films, and pedagogy. He drew the attention of the world to the music of his own country by defining, in a more specific way than ever before, the meaning of an indigenous American idiom. His initial attempts were in the field of jazz, the techniques of which he mastered and applied with telling effect in two works, Music for the Theater (1925) and Concerto for Piano and Orchestra (1927). Aware of the expressive limitations in this direction, he began to write in a simple but extremely austere manner, producing in the Piano Variations (1930), Short Symphony (1934), and the Piano Concerto (begun in 1935, finished in 1941), vital works of ingenious craftsmanship and originality, but of limited appeal. Realizing the danger of working in a vacuum if he pursued further in this manner, and sensing the growth of a new public for music through radio, films, and the phonograph, he began what he described as his "tendency toward an 'implied simplicity' " which produced some very colorful and directly appealing works: El Saldn Mexico (1936); music for radio, "Saga of the Prairie," (1936); music for films including Of Mice and Men (1939), The City (1939), Our Town (1940), and North Star (1943); and music for the ballet in such engaging scores as Billy the Kid (1938), Rodeo (1942), and Appalachian Spritig (1944), all of which employed American folk tunes. His Third Symphony (1946), Clarinet Concerto (1950), and Piano Quartet (1950) turned again toward abstract expression without traces of jazz or folk cliches, but revealing a new inventiveness and maturity that result in an economy of means and an avoid?ance of elaboration without ending in aridity. More recent works include Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson (1950); an opera The Tender Land (1954) and a 1956 revision of his earlier work Symphonic Ode (1932). His last work, a Nonet (a composition for nine instruments) dedicated to Nadia Boulanger, had its premiere in Washington, D.C., March 2, 1961.
Winthrop Sargeant wrote in the introduction to Boosey and Hawkes cata?logue of Copland's works (June 1957), "Any glance at the state of contemporary music in America must take Aaron Copland as a leader. Copland heads what is probably the strongest 'movement' in American composition at the present time. Critical analysis of his works and aestheticsf is therefore very important to anyone concerned with the future of music in America."
See page 47.
t Copland's ideas on music, perhaps the most articulate written today, may be found in his What to Listen jor in Music (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1939); Mushand Imagination (Cambridge: Harvard Uni?versity Press, 1952); and Copland on Music (New York: Doubleday and Co., 1960).
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"Orchestral Variations" were composed by commission of the Louisville Orches?tra, first performed in Louisville, March 5, 1958. At that performance Mr. Copland furnished the following information about the work:
The "Orchestral Variations" were completed on December 31, 19S7. The work is an orchestral transcription of my "Piano Variations" composed in 1930. The notion of tran?scribing the "Piano Variations" for orchestral performance had been a recurrent thought of mine for some years past. The offer of a commission from the Louisville Orchestra pro?vided the incentive for carrying out the project.
My purpose was not to create orchestra] sounds reminiscent of the quality of a piano, but rather to re-think the sonorous possibilities of the composition in terms of orchestral color. This would have been impossible for me to do when the work was new, for at that time the piano tone was an integral part of its conception. But with the perspective of twenty-seven years it was a comparatively simple matter to orchestrate as I have in the past, using the original as a piano sketch with orchestral possibilities.
The over-all plan of the work remains as it was: an eleven measure theme, dramatic in character, followed by a series of twenty variations and a coda. The intention was to make each variation cumulative in effect, with the coda as a kind of summation of the emotional content of the work.
Nothing has been added to the notes themselves except a few imitative voices. These were needed in an occasional variation to fill out what might otherwise have been too thin a texture. Although the rhythms have remained the same, the bar lines have been shifted in some cases to facilitate orchestral performance.
The "Piano Variations" were dedicated to my friend, the American writer, Gerald Sykes.
The theme is eleven bars long, but the core of it is a four note figure, E-C-E-flat-C-Sharp which is heard in every variation and is inescapable to the attentive listener. The figure may be played by brass, winds, or strings, the value of the notes varies, but it is always there. The composition is a unified whole, there is no feeling that it is broken into separate varia?tions, to be analyzed separately, and as individual variations are mentioned by number it is only to indicate distance passed, as milestones.
The brass, in subdued tones, open the work and the theme is presented in a restrained vein. This quietness continues until Variation VII when the mood becomes emboldened; singing tones of the strings in VIII and IX predominate; in No. XI the oboe's pleading tone is in duet with a solo flute. From Variation XII on there is a steady building climax, with an increasing use of brass, while No. XVIII is a scherzo, with flute and clarinet in the lead. An ingenious section for drums closes the last variation and leads to the coda which is brilliant.
Concerto in A minor, for Violin and Violoncello, Op. 102 . Brahms
Johannes Brahms was born in Hamburg, May 7, 1833; died in Vienna, April 3, 1897.
In a letter to Clara Schumann, Brahms wrote concerning his concerto for violin and cello: "Indeed it is not at all the same thing to write for instruments whose nature and timbre one has in one's head, as it were, only from time to time, and hears only with one's intelligence, as it is to write for an instrument which one knows through and through, as I do the piano, in which case I know thoroughly what I am writing, and why I write in this way or that."
It is obvious that Brahms did not feel quite at ease with this work, as to either form or expression, and there is no doubt that this awkward embarrass?ment reflected itself in his music. Hanslick detected it when he said that this concerto was the product of a great constructive mind, rather than an irresistible
inspiration of creative imagination and invention. Even those who admired Brahms unconditionally, as Hanslick certainly did, were often aware of calcula?tion and of workmanship due merely to an astonishing artistic understanding, which Brahms evidently applied in the conviction that he was employing his genius. The great violinist and personal friend of Brahms, Joachim, once actually warned him not to let himself be "disturbingly or forcibly urged by his will power," and the beloved Elizabeth von Herzogenberg reluctantly ventured at one time to express the same opinion. "Here I can no longer follow, no echo is awakened in me. And because I am so anxious to be enthusiastic, not to say warmly prejudiced in favor of Brahms, I ask myself, ever so softly, but still I ask myself, whether he does not give us many things in the birth of which his heart's blood had no share, but only his sagacity, his refinement, his craft, and his mastery. One misses the need that lets the best in an artist appear like something conditioned by nature, something created out of eternity for all eternity."
It must be noted that the Double Concerto on this evening's program was re?ceived with no more than cool admiration and that it remains one of the most cerebral of the Brahms compositions. This curiously somber and contemplative work, with its rigid themes, its introspectiveness, its mechanical and almost obstinate movement, its equation-like development, seems congealed into a kind of strange frosty greatness.
This, the last of the Brahms concertos, was an experiment in the revival of the old Italian form of the orchestral concerto or "concerto grosso" of the seventeenth century, in which the orchestral "tutti" of the concerto grosso contrasted with a "concertino" for several soloists. Perhaps the deliberate choice of an old classical form and the endeavor to make the most out of as little material as possible led Brahms to mistake the means for the end. In spite of its pleasing effect upon a wide public through its often eloquent lyricism, the Double Con?certo is considered by many to be a work elaborated by strictly mechanical method rather than an expression of an intense inner experience. In the second movement, however, there is a rich mysterious quality that makes its appeal for the moment, but soon leaves us again on the barren plains. The beauty of statement, in this particular case, has a validity above the expression of the "things of the spirit." These purely abstract elements can in themselves be a source of a kind of beauty, but a beauty that depends almost entirely upon the absolute, technical perfection of the execution. The Double Concerto, unlike most of the great works of Brahms, succeeds or fails with an audience on the basis of the quality and distinction of the performance.
Suite from The Tender Land.......Copland
The Tender Land was commissioned by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammer-stein II on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the League of Composers, and composed between 1952 and 1954. The text is by Horace Everett. The opera had its first performance by the New York City Opera Company under the direc-
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tion of Thomas Schippers at the New York City Center, April 1, 1954. It was per?formed by the opera department of the Berkshire Music Center at Tanglewood on August 2 and 3, 1954, and (revised from a twointo a three-act opera) by the Oberlin Conservatory on May 20 and 21, 1955.
The plot was related to the New York Herald Tribune by Mr. Copland in advance of the first performance.
The opera takes place in the mid '30s, in June, spring harvest time. It's about a farm family -a mother, a daughter who's just about to graduate from high school, a younger sister of ten, and a grandfather. There's big doings in the works -no one in the family has ever graduated before, and a whopping party is planned for the occasion.
Then two drifters come along asking for odd jobs. The grandfather is reluctant to give them any, and the mother is alarmed because she's heard reports of two young men molesting the young girls of the neighborhood. Nevertheless, the fellows are told they can sleep in the shed for the night.
The graduation party itself begins at the opening of the second act. The heroine, who by a genuine coincidence has the same name--Laurie--as the gal in Rodgers & Hammerstein's Oklahoma!, has, naturally, fallen in love with one of the drifters. And they prove it by singing a twelve-minute love duet. That, I can tell you, is revolutionary. After all, love duets are a sort of rarity in modern opera, and twelve minutes is a long time.
But about their budding love affair there is something of a complication. You see, she associates him with freedom, with getting away from home, and he associates her with settling down. Martin (that's the hero's name) asks Laurie to run away with him, and she, of course, accepts. But in the middle of the night, after a long discussion with his fellow hobo, Top, he decides that his kind of roving life is not for Laurie, so he silently steals off.
When Laurie discovers that she's been jilted, she decides to leave home, anyway, and at the conclusion of the opera the mother sings a song--a song of acceptance that is the key to the opera. In it she looks to her younger daughter as the continuation of the family cycle that is the whole reason for their existence.
The first movement of the Suite begins with the music from the Introduction to Act III and is followed by an almost complete version of the Love Duet from Act II.
The Party Scene is, as indicated, music from the Act II graduation party, especially the square dance material from that act.
The Finale is an exact transcription for orchestra of the vocal quintet that concludes Act I of the opera.
Horace Everett's text of the Quintet ("The Promise of Living") is as follows:
The promise of living With hope and thanksgiving Is bom of our loving Our friends and our labor.
The promise of growing With faith and with knowing Is born of our sharing Our love with our neighbor
The promise of living The promise of growing Is born of our singing In joy and thanksgiving.
(Copyrighted by Boosey and Hawkes)
THIRD CONCERT Suite No. 2 from the Ballet, Daphnis et Chloe . . . 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 specialized usage about 1863, when a sunset by Monet was shown in Paris at the Salon des RefusSs, 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 largely to the sensuous side of art. It sub?ordinated the subject for the most part to the execution, and it interpreted isolated momentary sensations, not thoughts or concrete things. In the words of Walter Pater, impressionism was "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, Renoir, and early Pissarro, render a music that is 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 impres?sionists 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, 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 he differs from Debussy. But, like Debussy, he reveals the typical French genius, an 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 Chloi, was composed for the Russian Ballet in 1910, at the request of Sergei 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 munnur 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 Chlo6. 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 Chlo?'s crown. His dream was a prophetic vision; the intervention of Pan is manifest. The old shepherd Lammon explains that Pan saved Chlo6, in remembrance of the nymph Syrinx, whom the god loved.
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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.
Saturday Evening, May 6 "Toccata Festiva," for Organ and Orchestra .... Barber
Samuel Barber was born March 9, 1910, at West Chester, Pennsylvania.
Samuel Barber received his early musical training at Curtis Institute, Philadel?phia, where he studied piano, voice, and composition. In 1935, three years after graduating, he won both the Pulitzer Prize in music (conferred upon him again the following year) and the Prix de Rome, which carried two years of study in Italy.
From the beginning, Barber's music won the affection of the public and at?tracted the attention of the world's foremost interpreters. The list is imposing. Toscanini introduced his First Essay for Orchestra and the now familiar and appealing Adagio for Strings at a concert of the NBC Orchestra in New York City (1938); his first Violin Concerto was originally performed by Albert Spald-ing and the Philadelphia Orchestra (1941); the Second Essay by Bruno Walter and the New York Philharmonic (1942); the Second Symphony with Koussevitzky (1944); the Cello Concerto with Raya Garbousova and the Boston Symphony (1945); his Piano Sonata by Horowitz (1949); the song cycle Melodies passageres by the French singer Bernard Bernac, accompanied by Francis Poulenc; and the Hermit Songs by Leontyne Price (1952). The list continues with a ballet Medea, dedicated to and danced by Martha Graham (1946), and since then performed throughout the United States, Europe, and the Far East; Souvenirs (1953) was played by Fritz Reiner and the Chicago Symphony; Prayers of Kierkegaard with Charles Munch and the Boston Sym?phony (1954). His opera Vanessa had its world premiere at the Metropolitan and its European premiere at the Salzburg Festival in 1958. It won the Pulitzer Prize the same year.
Barber has never forgotten that music must be communicative. The sincerity and directness of his art establishes at once a rapport between composer and audience. His lucid and poised writing comes as a refreshing relief from much of the robust, nervous, and erratic music produced by so many of our young American composers today. His is an art that does not surprise, explode, or per?spire; it has no conscious stylistic purpose, it shows no compulsion to direct American music along new or indigenous paths. In its coherence, simple logic, and economy, Barber has given America a music that is aristocratic, yet warmly articulate.
The "Toccata Festiva" was commissioned by Mrs. Mary Curtis Zimbalist for the dedication of the new Aeolian-Skinner organ she presented to the Academy of Music. Barber began its composition early in 1960 at "Capricorn," his country home near Mt. Kisco, New York, and completed it in Munich, Germany,
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last May. He dedicated it to Mrs. Zimbalist, and it was first performed on September 30, 1960, by Paul Callaway.
The work is in one movement and was designed to display, to the best ad?vantage, the new organ in combination with the Philadelphia Orchestra. The full orchestra announces (Allegro con brio) a sweeping, scale-like passage which is answered by the organ. The second lyrical theme offers a strong con?trast. It later presents itself in chorale style to bring the toccata to a dramatic close. An extended and highly embellished cadenza for the organ pedals alone provides the performer an opportunity to display high virtuosity.
Symphony No. 7...........Piston
Walter Piston was born at Rock-land, Maine, January 20, 1894.
Unquestionably, the music of Walter Piston reflects our time, yet it is neither shockingly aggressive nor distressingly acrid. In fact, among contemporary com?posers he is often, always respectfully, referred to as a "conservative" and a "classicist." If by classicist is meant an artist of impeccable taste and meticulous workmanship, one who has scrupulously adhered to a logical method of produc?ing well-ordered music in which content, expression, and form are sensitively balanced, and if by conservative is meant a composer who has consistently produced fine and distinguished music that has steadily held the respect of musicians and the general public alike, then Walter Piston is indeed the most eminent classicist and honored conservative in American music today.
His fastidious voice was at first faintly heard amid the anarchy of conflicting theories, bewildering experiments in extreme individualism, and the plethora of new systems that marked the decade of the twenties. Only when neo-classicism had established its tenets and had finally emerged as a body of syntax, did Piston's music begin to command attention. He has consciously applied to a modern idiom the governing principles of all classic art, identification of ex?pression and design, reconciliation of emotional impulse and intellectual organiza?tion. The result has been, in spite of the complexity of his musical texture, a clear and forthright music, communicating forcefully and directly.
The Seventh Symphony had its world premiere in Philadelphia, February 10,1961. It was commissioned by the Philadelphia Orchestra Association and was composed last summer and early in the fall. The Symphony, written for full orchestra, has three movements. Of these Mr. Piston writes: "The titles of these movements should suffice to give the listener an idea of their general character. As to form, the first movement follows the main outline of sonata form with two themes; the second movement consists of a principal melody played by the oboe followed by four variations and a coda. The third movement is a rondo with three themes. The Symphony is quite without descriptive or programmatic in?tentions." In composing this work Mr. Piston tells us that he had the particular sound of the Philadelphia Orchestra in his mind, "a circumstance I had already
See notes on Honegger, page 28.
experienced in my Sixth Symphony, written for the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Although I am somewhat less familiar with the Philadelphia Orchestra than I am with the Boston, I could not help hearing it mentally as I worked on the composition. Another intriguing factor was that I knew the Philadelphia Orches?tra would play the Symphony in Boston in March and that I also knew that their sound is not quite the same there as it is in the Academy of Music. These acoustic matters constitute one of the many absorbing and fascinating problems to be faced by the composer."
Concerto No. 2 in D minor for Piano and Orchestra,
Edward MacDowell was bom in New York, December 18, 1861, and died in New York, January 23, 1908.
The musical public today seldom realizes the debt it owes to a group of pioneer composers who, as young men in the 1880's, were drawn together by ties of friendship and a common interest in music. John Knowles Paine (1839-1906), George Chadwick (1854-1931), Arthur Foote (1853-1937), Horatio Parker (1863-1919), and Edward MacDowell (1861-1908) were the first native composers to win recognition at home and respect abroad. A good deal of missionary spirit was needed, for those endowed with musical talent were placed in the uncomfortable position of having to justify their profession and convert an indifferent America. These composers accomplished both feats by producing a great deal of honest, serious, and pleasant, if not original music, for they were men of culture, intelligence, and taste.
Their names rarely appear on programs today, and even MacDowell, to the present generation, is mainly associated with two piano miniatures from the Woodland Sketches--"To a Water Lily" and "To a Wild Rose." Even bis major works--the four piano sonatas (Tragica, 1893; Eroica, 1895; Norse, 1900; and Keltic, 1901); the First Modern Suite (1883), one of his best known works; the Twelve Virtuoso Studies (1894); the symphonic poems Hamlet and Ophelia (1885), Lancelot and Elaine (1888), and the Second Indian Suite-awaken only a faint memory as they fade into the limbo of forgotten things. Only the Second Piano Concerto seems to have won a permanent if not prominent place in today's repertory. Yet less than fifty years ago MacDowell was our most eminent composer when American music for the first time became a distinct reality on both sides of the Atlantic.
MacDowell was trained in Europe, as were the others of his group (with the exception of Arthur Foote) so that his music was saturated with the washback of German Romanticism. In 1876, he was a pupil at the Paris Conservatory and a fellow pupil of Debussy, and in 1878, he went to Germany to enter the Frankfort Conservatory as a pupil of Joachim Raff, who introduced him to Liszt. At Liszt's suggestion his two suites for piano and the First Piano Concerto were published in Leipzig by Breitkopf and Hartel. After twelve years in Europe, he returned to America and took up residence in Boston. His fame
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spread fast under the guidance of three conductors of the Boston Symphony: Gericke, Nikisch, and Paur, who performed his works as fast as he completed them.
In spite of its debt to European nineteenth-century music, MacDowell's art was the sincere expression of a very sensitive and poetic nature attuned to the psychological temper of the American environment. He failed to become the leader of a new American school, because he lived at the end of a cultural period; artistic ideals formulated as the nineteenth century came to its close could not have retained permanent value; they merely protracted those of the past. MacDowell's originality was scarcely strong enough to surmount the influence of his German training. Twentieth-century composers could find nothing in his music to give them a new direction. It is little wonder that his successors, in the fruitless years that followed, were doomed to oblivion.
MacDowell wrote two piano concertos, the first in A minor, Op. IS in 1884 and the second in D minor, Op. 23 in 1889-90, both comparatively early works showing evidence of his early training. Although the second Concerto is admittedly eclectic, with overtones of Grieg and Tchaikovsky in particular, the work has retained a sort of vernal freshness. It possesses everything characteristically Romantic--full-throated melodies; rich, tender lyricism; and dramatic, sweeping climaxes--all in the grand manner. Without any doubt it reveals the hand of a master craftsman in complete control of his medium, aware of all the expressive potentialities inherent in the instrument for which he writes. It remains a landmark in the cultural history of our country.
"Rhapsody in Blue".........Gershwin
George Gershwin was bom in Brooklyn, Septem?ber 28, 1898; died in Hollywood, July 11, 1937.
We must acknowledge popular forces such as jazz, as typical American music products, which, despite their divided allegiance between commerce and art, are of much greater cul?tural value than the average American suspects.
Toward the end of the nineteenth century, a popular pianist, T. M. Turpin, wrote a piano piece called "Harlem Rag" and in 1897 Kerry Mills produced "The Georgia Camp Meeting," one of the first well-known cakewalks. Following in their footsteps, W. Scott Joplin composed the famous "Maple Leaf Rag" in 1899. No one knows when the syncopated melodies of the Negro were taken into the white man's dance halls, but with these notable successes ragtime, as a distinctly American expression, made its raucous debut. The sources of this popular idiom are to be found in the early minstrel-show tunes around 1840, the so-called "coon songs"; cakewalk, buck and wing, and jig.
Ragtime was essentially a pianistic idiom, improvisatory in creation and per?formance, and more instrumental than vocal in style. One of the earliest bands playing in this free manner was that of the Negro, Buddy "King" Bolden, around
One of the most popular was "Old Zip Coon" or, as we know it today, "Turkey in the Straw" (1834).
1895 in New Orleans. Bolden's five or seven musicians, unable to read a note of music, improvised collectively with dissonant, accidental, but amazingly con?trapuntal effects. Between 1900 and 1905, John Philip Sousa and his band toured Europe four times, and in 1910--11, traveled around the world. On these occasions he played ragtime for the Emperor of Germany, the Czar of Russia, and King Edward VII of England (who, by the way, asked for more!). Sousa considered ragtime a legitimate and characteristic American expression, and Europe listened with open and intrigued ears.
In an article in the Seven Arts Magazine (1917), Hiram Moderwell wrote, "I like to think that ragtime is the perfect expression of the American city, with its bustle and motion, its multitude of unrelated details, and its under?lying rhythmic progress toward a vague somewhere ... it is the one true music."
But to the conventional Daniel Gregory Mason, ragtime was "the musical expression of an attitude toward life, only too familiar to us all, an attitude shallow, restless, avid of excitement, incapable of sustained attention, a mean?ingless stimulant, a commotion without purpose, an epilepsy simulating con?trolled muscular action." The controversy over the value of America's popular music raged on, the critical voice of Mr. Mason fading into a faint echo.
It was around 1910-11 that ragtime reached its peak in America with Irving Berlin's "Alexander's Ragtime Band" (written 1911, published 1912), but it lingered on in Zez Confrey's "Kitten on the Keys" (1921). These pieces had none of the rhythmic complexity of true "rag," for they really belonged to that period which saw the transition to jazz (1902-12). Between the writing and publication of "Alexander's Ragtime Band," the Negro, W. C. Handy, pro?duced the first of those indigo plaints, "Memphis Blues" (1909, published in 1912), originally a Memphis mayoralty campaign song, and the more famous "St. Louis Blues" (1914). Handy took as his source the Negro work songs and spirituals. Into these major-key melodies he interpolated a flat third and seventh, calling them "blue" notes, and filled in the pauses between the verses with instrumental or vocal embellishment. He made much use of the portamento and easy flowing rhythm, achieving a smoother, less staccato and percussive effect than in ragtime. "I took the humor of the coon song," wrote Handy, "the syncopation of ragtime, and the spirit of the Negro folk tune and called it 'blues.'" In the waning ragtime and the birth of the blues, the earliest ingredi?ents of "jazz" (a word of uncertain originf) were found.
Early jazz inherited various devices of syncopation from regular ragtime phrasing; from the blues it developed a more vocal type of melody. From 1912 jazz spread from the cheap saloons ("barrel houses") to various newly formed bands. One of the most famous of these, known as the "Original Dixieland Jazz Band," a white, not a Negro group, was the earliest to make recordings. Its members had no knowledge of music but plenty of primitive instinct for it,
As early as 1896, Johannes Brahms wrote to his American friend, Arthur Abell, that he had heard an example of American ragtime, played by an American tourist, and that, intrigued by its fascinating rhythmic effects, he was thinking of introducing them into a composition. Claude Debussy in 1906-08 wrote "Golliwoggs' Cake-Walk" long after ragtime had danced itself out of popularity in America.
t The word "jazz" first appeared in print in 1916.
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and more than a little ingenuity. On into the early twenties the temperature of jazz continued to rise until it reached the "hot" stage, while America, unashamed, danced herself into a frenzy, shouting in strident voice as a relief from war and prohibition. American doughboys carried this unorthodox expression of non-Puritan ancestry overseas, as once more Europe opened astonished ears. Igor Stravinsky fulfilled the hope Brahms had of using America's unique idiom by creating piano rag music. In 1918, the day of the Armistice, he produced his "Ragtime for Eleven Instruments," and other serious European composers were intrigued by its vigor and boldness, making use of its formulas and technical devices.
Refining elements began to affect "hot jazz" and to transform it into some?thing quite different. The piano relinquished its position of prominence to other instruments. Reeds (clarinets and saxophones), brasses (trumpets, cornets, and trombones), and occasional strings expanded the size of the band, until free in?dividual improvisation became difficult. In place of impromptu creation conscious prearranged instrumental effects were worked out meticulously in rehearsal, the arranger emerging on an equal footing with the composer. With the increased size of the band came a more pretentious style, Paul Whiteman's "symphonic" jazz, completing the metamorphosis. Whiteman had called a halt to "hot jazz," but he offered his own shock to the musical world when he began to "jazz" Rimsky-Korsakoff s "Song of India" and other classics. Indignation arose, and the musical purists and academicians raised eyebrows, hands, and finally wrath?ful voices, to join those long since issued from the pulpit--ladies' societies for the preservation of American culture, and all the various self-appointed members of a national purity league.
But jazz, the wanton, born in a "barrel house," reared in a night club, con?tinued her musical ascent. After several successful introductions into Broadway musical comedies and revues, where she cultivated her voice and improved her manners, she was led, in 1923, into the inner sanctum of Aeolian Hall. Her courageous guide was a serious concert singer, Eva Gautier, who pre?sented her to an ultra audience through a group of popular songs by Jerome Kern, Irving Berlin, and George Gershwin. Although the appearance caused quite a commotion in the upper circles, and she was somewhat snubbed, at least she was not evicted from the hall.
It was on the afternoon of February 12, 1924, however, that jazz made a legitimate and professional debut. On that propitious date, so closely associated with the idea of emancipation, Paul Whiteman snatched jazz from Tin Pan Alley to be presented formally at Aeolian Hall to a group of the social and musical elect, with dignity and charm. Whiteman had, in the words of Osgood, "made an honest woman of her." Whiteman called the affair "an experiment in modern music," and it made American musical history. It showed what jazz as a tech-
Among the more important are Hindemith: 1922 Suite; Milhaud: "La Creation du monde" (1923); Honegger: "Concertino for Piano and Small Orchestra" (1924-25); Krenek: "Johnny Spielt auf" (1927); Ravel: Violin sonata (second movement is a Blues) (1927); Lambert, C: Elegiac Blues (1927), "Rio Grande" (1928), Piano Sonata (192&-29), Piano Concerto (1931); Tansman: "Sonatine Transatlantique" (1930).
nique or a manner of treatment could do to the conventional melodies of Logan, MacDowell, and Friml, by infusing into them a rich inventiveness of rhythm and a saliency and vividness of orchestral color. Furthermore, it revealed what a symphonic treatment could do to enhance the popular tunes of Irving Berlin --"Alexander's Ragtime Band," "A Pretty Girl is Like a Melody," and "Orange Blossoms in California." But most important of all, it introduced George Gershwin as a serious composer with the piece de resistance, "Rhapsody in Blue." Until the creation of "Rhapsody in Blue," Gershwin had neither studied nor practiced composition in the symphonic manner. He had only his natural in?ventiveness and wit to call upon when Whiteman requested a special composition for his "experimental" concert. The request was made so casually that Gershwin didn't take it seriously until he saw the newspaper announcement that a new work by Mr. Gershwin would appear on the program. He set to work frantically and at the end of ten days the "Rhapsody in Blue" in a version for two pianos was completed. David Ewen in his Story of George Gershwin quotes the com?poser on the composition of the Rhapsody:
I resolved, if possible, to kill that misconception (of the function of jazz) with one sturdy blow. Inspired by this aim, I set to work composing. I had no set plan, no structure to which my music could conform. ... It was on the train, with its steely rhythms, its rattly-bang that is so often stimulating to a composer, that I suddenly heard--even saw on paper--the complete construction of the Rhapsody from begin?ning to end. No new themes came to me, but I worked on the thematic material already in my mind, and tried to conceive the composition as a whole. I heard it as a sort of musical kaleidoscope of America--our vast melting-pot, our incomparable na?tional pep, our blues, our metropolitan madness. By the time I reached Boston, I had the definite plot of the piece, as distinguished from its actual substance.
The middle theme came upon me suddenly, as my music often docs. It was at the home of a friend, just after I got back to Gotham. ... As I was playing, without a thought of the Rhapsody, all at once I heard myself playing a theme that must have been haunting me inside, seeking outlet. No sooner had it oozed out of my fingers than I realized I had found it. Within a week of my return from Boston I had com?pleted the structure, in the rough, of the "Rhapsody in Blue."
Ferde Grofe then orchestrated it, and three weeks from its inception White?man had it in rehearsal. One week later it was presented in Aeolian Hall to an audience of eminent critics and distinguished musicians, among them W. J. Henderson, Olin Downes, Virgil Thomson, Pitts Sanborn, Walter Damrosch, Jascha Heifetz, Fritz Kreisler, John McCormack, and Sergei Rachmaninoff. The Rhapsody was acclaimed by an audience that was surprised and charmed by the novelty of cheerful Broadway tunes, nostalgic blues, and impertinent jazz syn?copation, all woven together into one symphonic whole. There is no need to re?count the speed with which the Rhapsody became universally popular, nor to defend or justify its place today in the symphonic repertory of the whole world. To engage in any analysis of its form or thematic material would be as imperti?nent as superfluous. An American audience does not have to be told how to ap?preciate a music that is so much a part of them.
David Ewen, The Story 0 George Gershwin (New York: H. Holt & Co., 1946), pp. 92-93.
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One year after the "Rhapsody in Blue," the Symphony Society of New York, at the suggestion of Walter Damrosch, commissioned Gershwin to write a piano concerto. It was performed in Carnegie Hall on December 3, 1926, with Gershwin at the piano, under the direction of Damrosch, who introduced the work with the following remarks:
Various composers have been walking around jazz like a cat around a plate of hot soup, waiting for it to cool off, so that they could enjoy it without burning their tongues, hitherto accustomed only to the more tepid liquid distilled by books of the classical school. Lady Jazz, adorned with her intriguing rhythms, has danced her way around the world, even as far as the Eskimos of the North and the Polynesians of the South Sea Isles. But for all her travels and her sweeping popularity, she has en?countered no knight who could lift her to a level that would enable her to be received as a respectable member in musical circles.
George Gershwin seems to have accomplished this miracle. He has done it boldly by dressing this extremely independent and up-to-date young lady in the classic garb of a concerto. Yet he has not detracted one whit from her fascinating personality. He is the Prince who has taken Cinderella by the hand and openly proclaimed her a princess to the astonished world, no doubt to the fury of her envious sisters.
The English-Russian conductor, Albert Coates, in 1930, when asked to make a list of the fifty best musical compositions of all time, chose Gershwin's Piano Concerto as the only work by an American composer to take a place with the other forty-nine world masterpieces. The selection, based as all such selec?tions upon personal bias, was determined by universality of appeal, survival in time, and significance as an expression of the age that produced it. Whether or not all agree with Mr. Coates, the Piano Concerto furthered Gershwin's cause and established him more firmly as a serious and legitimate American composer.
In the Rhapsody and the Concerto, the crass vulgarity of jazz disappeared, leaving only its gaiety and wit. Into this music the nervous buoyancy and erratic vitality of jazz breathed its spirit and life. Jazz capable of symphonic treatment was no longer jazz; through George Gershwin the sublimation of a popular idiom into a truly American art-music was established.
Taine once wrote: "A new style is born when an artist's acquired technical habits are put to work in new surroundings--when interests residing in life, not in art, arouse him to personal utterance capable of imparting its flavor of direct experience." Gershwin was such an innovator; he worked without con?scious effort and with absolute honesty. Living all his life close to the source of American popular music, he kept his finger on the pulse of the nation; felt the underlying rhythm of his people, and this he infused into a new and fresh idiom, expressed without ostentation. There was no self-conscious aim to create an indigenous American music, totally foreign to the basic theory that art springs from subconscious sources, an integral part of the emotional and spiritual life of a people. Gershwin was unconscious of employing the acquired technical habits of popular jazz in a new surrounding; he was honest in not attempting to say anything he had not known or experienced. At Gershwin's death Koussevitsky wrote:
To speak of George Gershwin, the composer, is to approach the real, the essential
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part of his being. Like a rare flower which blossoms forth once in a long while, Gershwin represents a singularly original and rare phenomenon. Like a flower his life was short-lived, but the blossom of his soul has, is, and will be an inspiration to many a renowned composer of our day and of days to come. The voice of his music spread far beyond his country; it is heard overseas. To understand the nature of his gift and his mission, is to realize that Gershwin composed as a bird sings, because it is natural, it is inborn, it is part of his being. His was an elementary source which sprang from the soil. His richly endowed nature absorbed and crystallized the essence of American lore and poured it out into melody and rhythm with all the spontaneity, originality, and dynamic strength which were his own.
Since Gershwin gave dignity to an idiom that had been held in contempt and revealed the fact that our popular music had all the fecundity of folk music, several of our composers have recognized it as an accepted phenomenon in American musical life.f Aaron Copland predicted that American music would show its full influence eventually. "Since jazz is not exotic here but indigenous," he wrote, "since it is the music an American has heard as a child, it will be traceable more and more frequently in his symphonies and concertos." Ameri?can music may not be jazz, but one thing certain: jazz is American music. It reveals in certain prominent features its American origin, and this is recog?nized by the whole world.
Between the superlatives and extravagant claims of enthusiasts on the de?fensive, and condescendingly solemn pompousness of highbrow critics on the attack, lies the real significance and value of jazz in the formation of an indigenous American music. Certainly the musical historians of today and the future will find the task of evaluating it inescapable. Some time ago John Alden Carpenter wrote these words, "From the standpoint of art, it will be interesting to find out if the charm and vigor of jazz can be successfully diluted with the so?phistication of the trained creative impulse. In any event, I do not see how it can be ignored by any American composer who feels his native soil under his feet."
Merle Armitage, George Cershuin (London, New York, Toronto: Longmans, Green & Co., 1938), p. 114.
t A few of the works based on the jazz Idiom are John Alden Carpenter's "Concertino for Piano and Orchestra" (1915), Ballet, "Krazy Kat" (1921), and "Skyscrapers" (1926); Louis Gruenberg's "The Daniel Jazz" (1925); Aaron Copland's "Concerto for Piano and Orchestra" (1926); Randall Thompson's "Jazz Poem for Piano and Orchestra" (1928); Mark Blitzstein's opera, "The Cradle Will Rock" (1937); William Schuman, Symphony No. 4 (1941) and Symphony for Strings (1943); Norman Dello Joio's "Variation, Chaconne, and Finale" (1948); Leonard Bernstein's Symphony No. 2 ("The Age of Anxiety") (1949); Gunther Schuller, "Transformation" (1957); and Harold Shapero, "On Green Mountain" (1957).
Sunday Afternoon, May 7
Elijah, A Dramatic Oratorio for Chorus, Soloists, and
Orchestra, Op. 70..........Mendelssohn
Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy was born in Hamburg, February 3, 1809; died in Leipzig, November 4, 1847.
It is well in these chaotic days to turn to a perfectly balanced nature such as Mendelssohn's, in whose life and art all was order and refinement. There are few instances in the history of art of a man so abundantly gifted with the good qualities of mind and spirit. He had the love as well as the respect of his con?temporaries, for aside from his outstanding musical and intellectual gifts, he possessed a genial yet pious nature. Moses Mendelssohn, the famous philoso?pher, was his grandfather and in an atmosphere of culture and learning, every educational advantage was his. His life was spared the economic insecurity felt so keenly by many composers; he knew neither poverty nor privation, never ex?perienced any great soul-stirring disappointments, suffered neglect, nor any of the other ill fortune that seemed to beset Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert, or Verdi. His essentially happy spirit and healthy mind were unclouded by melancholy; no morbidity colored his thinking. His genius was of the highest order, but it was untried, untempered in fire, unstrengthened by forces of opposition. It pro?duced an art that was, like his life, cultured, well-ordered, and serene.
Mendelssohn's music, like that of its period in Germany, for all its finesse and high perfection, has something decidedly dated about it. Full of priggish formulas, it was the delight of Queen Victoria and the English--thoroughly conventional, polite, stylish music--as rear guard as Frederick IV, who ad?mired and promoted it. Influenced by the oratorios of Handel and Haydn, the Waldlieder of Weber, and the piano music of Schubert, Mendelssohn's art was eclectic in detail, but in general it bore no relation whatever to contemporary music in France, nor to the overpowering romanticism of his own country. His habitual forms were those of the classical school, yet his idiom was often fresh and ingenious. In the minds of some, grief might have lent a deeper undertone to his art, or daring innovation have given it a vitality and virility. But innovation was foreign to Mendelssohn's habit of mind and he rarely attempted it. He must be thought of as a preserver of continuity with the past, rather than as a breaker of new paths. His instinctively clear and normal mind, however, produced a music that should refresh us today with its inner logic, its order, and its tranquillity.
Few today would place Mendelssohn's Elijah in the same class with Handel's Messiah, or Bach's Mass in B minor, yet it remains a classic of its kind. Its fine style and consummate good taste have endeared it to a great public.
Mendelssohn's particular genius was lyrical and not epic, so that some of the more dramatic moments in the text may seem to be unrealized or under-
written. Today we might wish for a more dramatic treatment in the music of Elijah taunting the prophets of Baal, invoking the storm, receiving the vision on Horeb, and being swept up to heaven in a whirlwind. But in the more quiet moments in which Elijah heals the son of the widow, pathetically declares his failure in "It is enough," and receives comfort from an angel in "O rest in the Lord," Mendelssohn is at his lyrical best, writing music that is moving in its simple beauty. Dr. Ernest Walker, in his article on "Oratorio" in Grove's Diction?ary of Music and Musicians, states that "his religious music gives the impression that he lived in untroubled unconsciousness of anything outside mid-nineteenth century Protestantism." Yet his particular form of religious sentiment, which had such tremendous appeal to Victorian England, is sincerely and deeply, if not too intensely, felt.
The following analysis by Dr. Albert Stanley was published in the Official Program Book, May Festival 1920-21:
The work opens with sombre chords by the trombones, which introduce a recitative in which Elijah proclaims There shall be neither dew nor rain these years, but according to my word. Then begins the overture with a most suggestive phrase given out by the 'celli, pianissimo, which is developed with the admirable clearness so characteristic of the com?poser. His significant grasp of the technique of polyphonic writing and his mastery of the orchestra, coupled with the reserve always evident in the work of a master, are displayed long before the magnificent crescendo leading into the opening chorus, Help Lord, in which his power as a choral writer is no less in evidence. This chorus leads through choral reci?tatives to a duet, for soprano and contralto, with chorus, Lord, bow Thine ear. This is founded on an old traditional Hebrew melody. It will be noticed that the music has proceeded without any interruption up to this point. The unity thus secured is most admirable and establishes a mood that heightens the effect of the following recitative and aria, with all your hearts, and gives added force to the succeeding "Chorus of the People," which, beginning with cries of despair, He mocketh at us, ends with a solemn choral, For He, the Lord our God, is a jealous God. The closing measures, His mercies on thousands fall, are so permeated with the spirit of the recitative, For He shall give His angels charge over thee, which follows, that the effect of unity is not lost but rather strengthened.
All this, as well as the inspiring scene in which Elijah brings comfort to the sorrowing widow by the restoration of her son to life, and the chorus, Blessed are the men who fear Him--full of musical beauty and dramatic fervor as they are--is but preliminary to the wonderful episodes beginning with the recitative and chorus, As God the Lord of Sabaoth liveth, and ending with the chorus, Thanks be to God. This whole section is so instinct with life, so full of dramatic intensity, that were it necessary to substantiate Mendelssohn's claim to greatness, no other proof were needed. A composer of less power, or lacking in discrimination, would have so exhausted his resources earlier in this episode that an anti?climax would have been inevitable. Not so Mendelssohn. By happy contrasts the interest is maintained, and the hearer is led on, gradually but surely, by the force of the ever-expanding dramatic suggestion.
After the Priests of Baal have failed; when, in response to the appeals of the worshippers, Hear and answer, Baal, no answer comes; when Elijah, after that sublime prayer, Lord God of Abraham, and the chorus, Cast they burden upon the Lord, calls aloud on the Almighty, Thou who makesl Thine angels spirits, Thou, whose ministers are flaming fires, Let them now descendl what could be more intense than the chorus, The fire descends from heav'n; the flames consume his off'ring Note the effect of the choral which, beginning pianissimo, gradually gains in fervor until, at the words, And we will have no other gods before the Lord, nothing could be more convincing. Where in the whole literature of the oratorio is
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there a more beautiful effect than that produced by the dominant seventh (on A) at the word gods We have no space to comment on the solos leading up to the prayer of the people, when, kneeling, they ask the Lord to Open the heavens and send us relief, for now comes the real climax. The Youth, who has been sent to look toward the sea, after gazing long in vain, finally cries, Behold, a little cloud ariseth from the waters; it is like a man's hand! The heav'ns are black with clouds and with wind. The storm rusheth louder and louderl Then comes the final chorus, Thanks be to God, a paean of thanksgiving than which no greater has ever been written, with the possible exception of the Hallelujah Chorus.
In Part II the composer moves on to the second great climax, the "Whirlwind Chorus." This part begins with a noble soprano solo, Hear ye, Israel, the concluding sentence of which, Be not afraid, forms the basis of the strong and dignified chorus into which the solo merges. When the people, forgetting all they owe to the prophet, turn again to the worship of Baal, and, stirred up by the Queen, seek his life, comes that pathetic aria, It is enough, from a purely musical point of view the most beautiful in the whole oratorio. Then, as he sleeps under the juniper tree, the "Angels' Trio," Lift thine eyes, and the chorus, He watch?ing over Israel slumbers not nor sleeps, speak assurances of comfort; as waking, he cries, O that I might die, the angel sings, 0 rest in the Lord. The prevailing sentiment is not dis?turbed by the succeeding chorus, Behold, God the Lord passed by, for, after the exhibition of power--the wind--the earthquake--the fire--comes a "still, small voice," and "in that still, small voice onward came the Lord." Now comes the real climax of the work, the "Whirlwind Chorus," to the text: Then did Elijah the prophet break forth like a fire; his words appeared like burning torches. Mighty kings were by him overthrown (note the imposing theme first stated by the basses!) he stood on the mount of Sinai, and heard the judgments of the future, and in Horeb its vengeance"--"And when the Lord would take him away to heaven, Lot there came a fiery chariot, with fiery horses; and he went by a whirl?wind to Heaven." Here the work ends, were we to consider it from the point of view of dramatic fitness alone.
All that follows is reflective. The tenor solo, Then shall the righteous shine; the quartet, O come, every one that thirsteth, and the concluding chorus, And then shall your light break forth, combine in the establishment of a mood so at variance with the feelings underlying the expressions given voice in the beginning of the First Part that thereby a contrast is secured, such as must exist in a great unified work.
Elijah--As God the Lord of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but ac?cording to my word. Kings 17:1.
The People--Help, Lord! Wilt Thou quite destroy us
The harvest now is over, the summer days are gone, and yet no power cometh to help us; Will then the Lord be no more God in Zion Jeremiah 18:21. Recitative Chorus
The deep affords no water; and the rivers are exhausted! The suckling's tongue now cleaveth for thirst to his mouth; the infant children ask for bread, and there is no one breaketh it to feed them! Lament. 4:4.
Duet and Chorus
The People--Lord! bow Thine ear to our prayer!
Duet--Zion spreadeth her hands for aid; and there is neither help nor com?fort. Lament. 1:17.
Obadiah--Ye people, rend your hearts, and not your garments, for your trans?gressions the Prophet Elijah hath sealed the heavens through the word of God. I therefore say to ye, Forsake your idols, return to God; for He is slow to anger, and merciful, and kind and gracious, and repenteth Him of the evil. Joel 2:12-13. Air
If with all your hearts yc truly seek me, ye shall ever surely find me. Thus saith our God.
Oh! that I knew where I might find Him, that I might even come before His presence. Deut. 4:29; Job 23:3.
The People--Yet doth the Lord see it not; He mocketh at us; His curse hath fallen down upon us; His wrath will pursue us, till He destroys us!
For He, the Lord our God, He is a jealous God; and He visiteth all the fathers' sins on the children to the third and fourth generation of them that hate Him. His mercies on thousands fall--fall on all them that love Him and keep His commandments. Deut. 28:22; Exodus 20:5,6.
An Angel--Elijah! get thee hence; depart, and turn thee eastward; thither hide thee by Cherith's brook. There shalt thou drink its waters; and the Lord thy God hath commanded the ravens to feed thee there; so do according unto His word. Kings 17:3.
An Ancel--Now Cherith's brook is dried up, Elijah, arise and depart, and get thee to Zarephath; thither abide, for the Lord hath commanded a widow woman there to sustain thee. And the barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the Lord send-eth rain upon the earth. Kings 17:7, 9,14.
Recitative and Air
The Widow--What have I to do with thee, O man of God art thou come to me, to call my sin unto remembrance to slay my son art thou come hither Help me, man of God! my son is sick! and his sickness is so sore that there is no breath left in him! I go mourning all the day long; I lie down and weep at night. See mine affliction. Be thou the orphan's helper.
Elijah--Give me thy son. Turn unto her, 0 Lord my God; in mercy help this widow's son! For Thou art gracious, and full of compassion, and plenteous in mercy and truth. Lord, my God, O let the spirit of this child return, that he again may live!
The Widow--Wilt thou show wonders to the dead Shall the dead arise and praise thee
Elijah--Lord, my God, O let the spirit of this child return, that he again may live!
The Widow--The Lord hath heard thy prayer; the soul of my son reviveth!
Elijah--Now behold, thy son liveth!
The Widow--Now by this I know that thou art a man of God, and that His word in thy mouth is the truth. What shall I render to the Lord for all His benefits to me
Both--Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
O blessed are they who fear him! Kings 17:17, 18, 21-24; Job 10:15; Psalm 38:6, 6:7, 10:14, 86:15, 16, 88:10, 127:1. Chorus
Blessed are the men who fear Him: they ever walk in the ways of peace. Through darkness riseth light to the up?right. He is gracious, compassionate; He is righteous. Psalm 128:1, 112:1, 4. Recitative
Elijah--As God the Lord of Sabaoth liveth, before whom I stand, three years this day fulfilled, I will show myself unto Ahab; and the Lord will then send rain again upon the earth.
Ahab--Art thou Elijah art thou he that troubleth Israel
Chorus--Thou art Elijah, he that troubleth Israel!
Elijah--I never troubled Israel's peace; it is thou, Ahab, and all thy father's house. Ye have forsaken God's commands; and thou has followed Baalim!
Now send and gather to me the whole of Israel unto Mount Carmel: there sum?mon the prophets of Baal, and also the prophets of the groves, who are feasted at Jezebel's table. Then we shall see whose god is the Lord.
Chorus--And then we shall see whose god is God the Lord.
Elijah--Rise then, ye priests of Baal: select and slay a bullock, and put no fire under it; uplift your voices, and call the god ye worship; and I then will call on the Lord Jehovah; and the God who shall by fire answer, let him be God.
Chorus--Yea; and the god who by fire shall anwer, let him be god.
Elijah--Call first upon your god; your numbers are many: I, even I. only remain, one prophet of the Lord! Invoke your forest-gods and mountain-deities. Kings 17:17, 18:1, 15, 18, 19, 23-25. Chorus
Priests of Baal--Baal, we cry to thec!
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hear and answer us! Heed the sacrifice we offer! hear us! O hear us, Baal!
Hear, mighty god! Baal, O answer us! Let thy flames fall and extirpate the foe! O hear us, Baal!
Elijah--Call him louder, for he is a god! He talketh; or he is pursuing; or he is on a journey; or, peradventure, he sleepeth; so awaken him; call him louder!
Priests of Baal--Hear our cry, O Baal! now arise! wherefore slumber
Elijah--Call him louder! he heareth not. With knives and lancets cut yourselves after your manner; leap upon the altar ye have made: call him, and prophesy! Not a voice will answer you; none will listen, none heed you.
Priests of Baal--Hear and answer, Baal! Mark! how the scorner derideth us! Hear and answer! I Kings 18:1,15, 17, 18, 19, 23-29.
Recitative and Air
Elijah--Draw near, all ye people: come to me!
Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel! this day let it be known that Thou art God; and I am Thy servant! O show to all this people that I have done these things according to Thy word! O hear me, Lord, and answer me; and show this people that Thou art Lord God; and let their hearts again be turned! Kings 18:20, 36, 37.
Angels--Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and He shall sustain thee. He neveT will suffer the righteous to fall; He is at thy right hand.
Thy mercy, Lord, is great; and far above the heavens. Let none be made ashamed that wait upon Thee. Psalm 55:22,16:8,108:5, 25:3.
Elijah--O Thou who makest Thine angels spirits, Thou whose ministers are flaming fires, let them now descend! Psalm 104:4.
The People--The fire descends from heaven; the flames consume his offering!
Before him upon your faces fall! The Lord is God; and we will have no other gods before the Lord! Kings IS:38, 39.
Elijah--Take all the prophets of Baal; and let not one of them escape you: bring them down to Kishon's brook, and there let them be slain.
The People--Take all the prophets of Baal; and let not one of them escape us: bring all, and slay them! Kings, 18:40.
Elijah--Is not His word like a fire: and like a hammer that breaketh the rock into pieces
For God is angry with the wicked every day: and if the wicked turn not, the Lord will whet His sword; and He hath bent His bow, and made it ready. Jer. 23:29; Psalm 7:11,12.
Woe unto them who forsake Him! de?struction shall fall upon them, for they have transgressed against Him. Though they are by Him redeemed, yet they have spoken falsely against Him. Hosea 7:13.
Recitative and Chorus
Obadiah--O man of God, help Thy people! Among the idols of the Gentiles, are there any that can command the rain, or cause the heavens to give their showers The Lord our God alone can do these things.
Elijah--O Lord, Thou has overthrown thine enemies and destroyed them. Look down upon us from heaven, O Lord; re?gard the distress of Thy people: open the heavens and send us relief: help, help Thy servant now, O God!
The People--Open the heavens and send us relief: help, help Thy servant now, O God!
Elijah--Go up now, child, and look to?ward the sea. Hath thy prayer been heard by the Lord
The Youth--There is nothing. The heavens are as brass above me.
Elijah--When the heavens are closed up because they have sinned against Thee, yet if they pray and confess Thy name, and turn from their sin when Thou dost afflict them: then hear from heaven, and
forgive the sin! Help! send Thy servant help, O God!
The People--Then hear from heaven and forgive the sin! Help! send Thy Ser?vant help, O God!
Elijah--Go up again, and still look to?ward the sea.
The Youth--There is nothing. The earth is as iron under me!
Elijah--Hearest thou no sound of rain Seest thou nothing arise from the deep
The Youth--No; there is nothing.
Elijah--Have respect to the prayer of Thy servant, O Lord, my God! Unto Thee will I cry, Lord, my rock; be not silent to me; and Thy great mercies re?member, Lord!
The Youth--Behold, a little cloud ariseth now from the waters; it is like a man's hand! The heavens are black with clouds and with wind; the storm rusheth louder and louder!
The People--Thanks be to God for all His mercies!
Elijah--Thanks be to God for He is gracious, and His mercy endureth for evermore!
Thanks be to God! He laveth the thirsty land! The waters gather; they rush along; they are lifting their voices!
The stormy billows are high; their fury is mighty. But the Lord is above them, and Almighty. Psalm 93:3, 4; Jer. 14:22; II Chron. 6:19, 26, 27; Deut. 28:23; Psalm 28:1, 106:1; I Ktngs 18:43, 45.
PART II Air
Hear ye, Israel; hear what the Lord speaketh: "Oh, hadst thou heeded my com?mandments!"
Who hath believed our report; to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed
Thus saith the Lord, the Redeemer of Israel, and His Holy One, to Him op?pressed by tyrants: thus saith the Lord: "I am He that comforteth; be not afraid, for I am thy God, I will strengthen thee. Say, who art thou, that thou art afraid of a man that shall die; and forgettest the Lord thy Maker, who hath stretched for thee the heavens, and laid the earth's foun?dations Be not afraid, for I, thy God, will
strengthen thee." Isaiah 48:1, 18, 53:1, 44:7, 41:10, 51:12, 13.
Be not afraid, saith God the Lord. Be not afraid; thy help is near. God, the Lord thy God, saith unto thee, "Be not afraid!" Isaiah 41:10.
Elijah--The Lord hath exalted thee from among the people, and o'er his people Israel hath made thee King. But thou, Ahab, has done evil to provoke him to anger above all that were before thee: As if it had been a light thing for thee to walk in the sins of Jeroboam. Thou hast made a grove and an altar to Baal, and served him and worshipped him; Thou hast killed the righteous, and also taken possession. And the Lord shall smite all Israel as a reed is shaken in the water; and He shall give Israel up, And thou shalt know He is the Lord. Kings 14:7, 9, 15; 16:30-33.
Recitative and Chorus
The Queen--Have ye not heard, heard he hath prophesied against Israel Hath he not prophesied also against the king of Israel And why hath he spoken in the Name of the Lord Doth Ahab govern the kingdom of Israel, while Elijah's power is greater than the King's The gods do so to me, and more, if by tomorrow about this time, I make not his life as the life of one of them whom he hath sacrificed at the brook of Kishin!
Hath he not destroyed Baal's prophets Yea, by sword he destroyed them all. He also closed the heavens. And called down a famine upon the land. So go yet forth and seize Elijah, for he is worthy to die; slaughter him! do unto him as he hath done.
Woe to him! He shall perish, he closed the heavens, And why hath he spoken in the name of the Lord
Let the guilty prophet perish! Woe to him; He shall perish! He hath spoken falsely against our land, and us, as we have heard it with our ears! Let the guilty prophet perish! So go ye forth: seize on him! He shall die. Jeremiah 26:9, 11; I Kings 18:10, 19:2, 27:7; Ecclesiastes 48:2, 3.
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Obadiah--Man of God, now let my words be precious in thy sight. Thus saith Jezebel: "Elijah is worthy to die." So the mighty gather against thee, and they have prepared a net for thy steps; that they may seize thee, that they may slay thee. Arise, then, and hasten for thy life; to the wilderness journey. The Lord thy God doth go with thee: He will not fail thee. He will not forsake thee. Now be?gone, and bless me also.
Elijah--Though stricken, they have not grieved! Tarry here, my servant: the Lord be with thee. I journey hence to the wilder?ness. Kings 1:13; Jer. 5:3, 26:11; Psalm 59:3; I Kings 19:4; Deut. 31:6; Exodus 12:32; I Samuel 17:37.
Elijah--It is enough, O Lord; now take away my life, for I am not better than my fathers! I desire to live no longer; now let me die, for my days are but vanity!
I have been very jealous for the Lord God of Hosts! for the children of Israel have broken Thy convenant, thrown down Thine altars, and slain Thy prophets with the sword: and I, even I, only am left; and they seek my life to take it away. Job 7:16; I Kings 19:10.
Obadiah--See now he sleepeth beneath a juniper tree in the wilderness: and there the angels of the Lord encamp round about all them that fear Him. Kings 19:5; Psalm 34:7.
Angels--Lift thine eyes to the moun?tains, whence cometh help. Thy help cometh from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He hath said, thy foot shall not be moved; thy Keeper will never slumber. Psalm 121:1, 3.
Angels--He, watching over Israel slum?bers not nor sleeps. Shouldst thou, walking in grief, languish, He will quicken thee. Psalm 121:4, 138:7.
An Angel--Arise, Elijah, for thou hast a long journey before thee. Forty days and forty nights shalt thou go; to Horeb, the mount of God.
Elijah--O Lord, I have labored in vain; yea, I have spent my strength for naught!
O that Thou wouldst rend the heavens, that Thou wouldst come down; that the mountains would flow down at Thy pres?ence, to make Thy name known to Thine adversaries, through the wonders of Thy works!
O Lord, why hast Thou made them to err from Thy ways, and hardened their hearts that they do not fear Thee O that I now might die. Kings 19:8; Isaiah 44:4, 64:1, 2, 63:7.
An Angel--O rest in the Lord; wait patiently for Him, and He shall give thee thy heart's desires. Commit thy way unto Him, and trust in Him, and fret not thy?self because of evil-doers. Psalm 37:1, 7.
Elijah--Night falleth round me, O Lord! Be Thou not far from me! Hide not Thy face, O Lord, from me; my soul is thirsting for Thee, as a thirsty land.
An Angel--Arise now! get thee without, stand on the mount before the Lord; for there His glory will appear and shine on thee! Thy face must be veiled, for He draweth nigh. Psalm 143:6, 7; I Kings 19:11.
Behold! God the Lord passed by! And a mighty wind rent the mountains around, brake in pieces the rocks, brake them before the Lord: but yet the Lord was not in the tempest.
Behold! God the Lord passed by! And the sea was upheaved, and the earth was shaken: but yet the Lord was not in the earthquake.
And after the earthquake there came a fire; but yet the Lord was not in the fire.
And after the fire there came a still, small voice; and in that still, small voice onward came the Lord. Kings 19:11, 12.
Elijah--I go on my way in the strength of the Lord.
For thou art my Lord; and I will suffer for thy sake.
My heart is therefore glad, my glory rejoiceth and my flesh shall also rest in hope! Kings 19:15, 18; Psalm 71:16; 16:2, 9.
Elijah--For the mountains shall de?part, and the hills be removed; but Thy kindness shall not depart from me, neither shall the covenant of Thy peace be re?moved. Isaiah 54:10.
Then did Elijah the prophet break forth like a fire; his words appeared like bum-ing torches. Mighty kings by him were overthrown. He stood on the mount of Sinai, and heard the judgments of the future; and in Horeb, its vengeance.
And when the Lord would take him away to heaven, lo! there came a fiery chariot, with fiery horses; and he went by a whirlwind to heaven. Ecclesiastes 48:1, 6, 7; II Kings 2:1, 11. Air
Then shall the righteous shine forth as
the sun in their Heavenly Father's realm. Joy on their head shall be for everlasting, and all sorrow and mourning shall flee away for ever. Matthew 13:43; Isaiah 51:11.
0! come every one that thirsteth, O come to the waters: come unto Him. O hear, and your soul shall live for ever! Isaiah 55:1, 3.
And then shall your light break forth as the light of morning breaketh; and your health shall speedily spring forth then; and the glory of the Lord ever shall reward you.
Lord, our Creator, how excellent Thy name is in all the nations. Thou fUlest heaven with Thy glory. Amen! Isaiah 58:8; Psalm 8:1.
Sunday Evening, May 7
Compositions of Sergei Rachmaninoff
Sergei Rachmaninoff was born April 2, 1873, in Novgorod; died March 28, 1943, in Beverly Hills.
The somber beauty and brooding melancholy that courses through Rach?maninoff's art marks him, as it did Gustav Mahler and Richard Strauss, as one of the last of the Titans of musical romanticism, an artist who lived beyond the fulfillment of an era. He carried to epic climax the soul of his country, of an epoch, with the gloom and despair of man's struggle against re?lentless destiny. Like the other late romanticists, he clung tenaciously to a dying tradition, regretful at its passing, nostalgic with its memories.
Virgil Thomson, writing in the New York Herald Tribune for Sunday, February 26, 1950, has summed up his position thus:
The career of Sergei Rachmaninoff was that of a major talent. His natural gifts of ear and hand were impeccable; his training was nowhere short of completeness; recognition in professional life came early. The only kind of success he never enjoyed was that of intellectual distinction. He would have liked being a popular musician, a conservative musician and an advanced one all at the same time. But as a young mod?ernist he suffered defeat at the hands of his contemporary, Alexander Scriabine, and there is reason to believe that later he entertained some bitterness about the impregnable position occupied in the intellectual world of music by his junior compatriot, Igor Stravinsky.
There is no question, however, about Rachmaninoff's mastery. He composed, as he played the piano, in complete fullness and control. The nature of his expression-his passionless melancholy, his almost too easy flow of melody, his conventional but highly personal harmony, the loose but thoroughly coherent structure of his musical discourse--is often distasteful to musicians. They tend to find it a retreat from battle, an avoidance of the contemporary problem. But it is not possible, I think, to withhold admiration for the sincerity of the sentiments expressed or for the solid honesty of its workmanship. Rachmaninoff was a musican and an artist, and his expression through the divers musical techniques of which he was master, seems to have been complete.
Whether success in the world was a deep desire of Sergei Rachmaninoff I do not know, but success was his in a way that musicians seldom experience it. It came to him in his own lifetime, moreover, and through the practice of three separate musical branches. As a composer, as a conductor, and as a touring virtuoso of the pianoforte he received worldwide acceptance and acclaim. His domestic life, too, seems to have been remarkably satisfactory. A more optimistic temperament than his would probably have glowed with happiness.
Actually, his letters and recorded conversations are consistently gloomy. Like Tchaikovsky, whom he adored, and who usually wept a little on almost any day, he seemed to find his best working condition a dispirited state. Indeed, even more than in the case of Tchaikovsky, his depressive mentality has come to represent to the Western world a musical expression both specifically Russian and specifically attractive through the appeal of sadness. Whether this opulence of discontent is found equally present in the Soviet Union I do not
know; but Rachmaninoff, in spite of his conservative political opinions, has been adopted since his death as a Russian classic master in Russia. This success is another that would have pleased him profoundly, I am sure, though he would no doubt have acknowledged it with a mask of woe.
There is probably some resemblance between contemporary Russia and the United States underlying Rachmaninoff's great glory in both countries. The official mood of cheer?fulness is in both cases a thin surface through which wells of rich blackness gush forth constantly, relieving the emotional poverty of sustained optimism and providing for accepted states of mind both a holiday and a corrective. Rachmaninoff's music is no toner-up of depressed nations. It is most heartily enjoyed in those countries where the national energies are strong enough to need a sedative.
Vocalise, Op. 34, No. 14
A "vocalise" in its generic meaning is a wordless technical exercise for the voice. It has acquired a derogatory connotation, identified with a vocal pedagogy no longer respected or with scores from the "golden age of singing" quite frankly meant to display vocal pyrotechnics. To consider the human voice purely as an instrument has fallen into disrepute. In this essentially instrumental age of ours, on the other hand, one seldom meets a comparable scorn vented on the numerous cadenzas that intrude upon violin and piano concertos, where the performer glories in the potentialities of his instrument and in his own technical mastery of it.
The fact is that the absence of words in vocal music enables the singer to use his voice in a manner not possible with the variety of word sounds, that in many instances conspire against the emission of pure vocal tone.
Throughout the history of music, composers have recognized this fact. From the time of the vocal melismas in Gregorian chant, the textless tenor parts of thirteenth-century motets, and many of the extended passages of the ballades and madrigals of the fourteenth century, to a considerable literature of the sixteenth century, the publications of which were often inscribed with the words de cantare a sonare (to be sung or played), wordless song has soared above the mundane meaning of words. Bach and Handel scores are full of such wordless vocalizations that often take flight and thrill us with, as Richard Wagner once wrote, "the nameless joy of a paradise regained."
In recent history, composers have failed to utilize the human voice with any telling effect. Exceptions may be noted, however, in Debussy's "Sirens," Medtner's "Sonata-vocalise," Op. 41a, and "Suite-vocalise," Op. 416, Ravel's "Vocalise en forme d'habanera," and Aaron Copland's more recent "Vocalise" --all stunning revivals of an old and still effective practice.
In 1912, Rachmaninoff composed a series of fourteen songs with piano accom?paniment. Upon the last of these, a wordless song, he lavished a haunt-ingly beautiful melody. In its expressive power it equals or surpasses anything that could be made more specific in meaning by the addition of a text. This wordless melody is as profound and poignant in its significance as any specific emotion that the addition of words might possibly evoke.
In 1915-16, Serge Koussevitzky was conducting concerts in Moscow. At that
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time he requested Rachmaninoff to make an orchestral version of the "Vocalise," giving the vocal melody to the first violins.
Concerto for Piano No. 2, in C minor, Op. 18
Rachmaninoff was born in the gloomiest period Russia had experienced for over a century. All the sublime efforts of the generation that had entertained such high hopes in the seventies, had ended in defeat. The great social reforms (includ?ing the abolition of serfdom in 1861) brought about by Alexander II, were looked upon as grave mistakes. The reactionary elements that rallied around Alexander III after the assassination of his liberal-minded father in 1881 tolerated no oppo?sition. The new emperor counteracted the excessive liberalism of his father's reign by indicating he had no intention of limiting or weakening the aristocratic power inherited from his ancestors. A feeling of hopeless despair was shared by the young "intellectuals" whose inability to solve problems of renovation or to break the inertia of the masses soon became tragically apparent. Their loss of faith in the future, the destruction of their illusions, was impressively reflected in the short stories of Vsevolod Garshin and in the nostalgic fiction and drama of Anton Chekhov.
Rachmaninoff, like so many young men living in Moscow at the turn of the century, suffered from the contagion of his times. His melancholy turn of mind and pessimistic outlook offered little protection against the disappointments and frustrations he met at the outset of his career as a composer. His first symphony, written in 1895 and produced in St. Petersburg, was a complete failure, receiving one performance and never heard again. This threw the young composer into the depths of despair. In his memoirs he writes:
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 thought 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 Satins. 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. 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 foun?dation for my existence. Nor could I hope that the Conservatoire would offer me a situation as a pianoforte teacher.t
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:
The Satins were dose friends of the composer. On April 28, 1902, he married Nathalie Satin, t Sergei Rachmaninoff, Recollections, trans, by Rutherford (New York: The Macmillan Co., 1934).
My relatives 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, his 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 miracu?lous 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.
The Second Concerto needs no further explanation. It is among the most famous and familiar of all Rachmaninoff's compositions. Its facile melodies have already found their way into the popular music of our day.
Symphony No. 2 in E minor, Op. 2 7
Six years after the composition of the Second Concerto, Rachmaninoff turned again to the symphony. After the disastrous first attempt in 1895 and restoration of faith in himself as a composer, he created the Second Symphony with confidence in his talent. In 1906, he left Moscow with his wife and young daughter to seek relief from his professional duties as pianist and conductor. Dresden offered an environment favorable to creative work, and in temporary seclusion he produced his most successful compositions for orchestra, The Isle of the Dead and the Second Symphony. The Symphony had its world premiere in St. Petersburg, February 8, 1908, and its first performance in Moscow, November 26, 1909. Success was immediate. Two months earlier it had been awarded the coveted Glinka Prize.
The work is dedicated to Sergi Ivanovitch Taneiew, successor to Tchai?kovsky as teacher of composition at the Moscow Conservatory. Tchaikovsky continued in an honorary position and Rachmaninoff came briefly under his guidance when he entered in 1885. The influence of the master upon the impressionable young composer is nowhere more evident than in the two major works on tonight's program. Their introspective melodies, rich dark harmonies,
MAY FESTIVAL PROGRAM
and opulent instrumental colors, and especially their restless, shifting moods from quiet contemplation or brooding melancholy to rhapsodic fervor and impassioned eloquence, are all in the Tchaikovsky idiom.
The reasons for the immense popularity of the Second Symphony and the Second Concerto are obvious. Both are melodious, sonorous, and eminently vital works. They do not perplex or attempt to say anything new. The forms are academic, the expression familiarly Romantic, products of an age that saw the fading of the Romantic ideal and the advance of the realistic, logical, and scientific ideas of the twentieth century. They are epilogues echoing from a vanishing world, increasingly remote, now irrecoverably lost.
May Festival patrons are invited to visit the Stearns Collection of Musical Instruments on the second floor foyer of Hill Auditorium. The collection consists of approximately 1,500 primitive and oriental instru?ments from all over the world, as well as historical forms of present-day Western instruments. A special exhibit features the history of the clarinet.
NOTES ON THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA AND MAY FESTIVAL ARTISTS
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA gave its first concert November 16, 1900. The German musician, Fritz Scheel, first permanent conductor, and his successor, Carl Pohlig, laid firm foundations for the orchestra. Leopold Stokow-ski was engaged the thirteenth season, remaining as conductor until 1940 when Eugene Ormandy became fourth conductor. The orchestra has made three tours of Europe--one including Russia. It was the first symphonic organization to make recordings under its own name with its own conductor (1917); the first to broadcast over a radio network for a commercial sponsor (1929); the first to be featured in films (1937); and the first to be televised nationally (1948). And finally, the orchestra has become a champion of new music, achieving an impressive list of American and world premieres.
EUGENE ORMANDY, at the age of five, entered the Royal Academy of Music in Budapest, Hungary. At nine he became a pupil of the great violinist, Jeno Hubay (after whom he was named). Soon he began to perform before the Royal family--on one such auspicious occasion before the Emperor, Franz Josef. At seventeen he received his professor's diploma at the Royal Academy, and was given degrees in violin playing, composing, and counterpoint. He con-certized, then taught at the State Conservatory in Budapest. A proposed con?cert tour of the United States in 1921 got only as far as New York, where, without further concert bookings or funds, he turned his talents to playing violin in the Capitol Theater orchestra. His career as a conductor gained sudden impetus in 1931, when he substituted for Toscanini, conducting the Philadelphia Orchestra. A representative of the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra in the audience immediately signed Ormandy as guest conductor. He later became its permanent conductor, a post he held until 1936, when he was made music director and conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra, twenty-five seasons ago.
WILLIAM SMITH, Assistant Conductor of the Philadelphia Orchestra since 1953, is New Jersey-born. A versatile musician, Smith understudies Mr. Or?mandy in the preparation of all scores, conducts reading rehearsals of new works, assists in the preparation of all choral groups and vocal soloists, and serves also as official pianist and organist of the orchestra. Throughout the season he conducts both in Philadelphia and on tour. He founded the Phila?delphia Orchestra Chorus a few years ago. He also serves as conductor of the orchestra at the Curtis Institute of Music, and Director of Choirs and Orchestra at the University of Pennsylvania.
THOR JOHNSON lived most of his early life in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He was graduated from the University of North Carolina before coming to The University of Michigan for graduate study. In 1935, he was granted a Beebe Foundation Scholarship providing for a year's study in Europe
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with conductors Weingartner, Abendroth, Malko, and Bruno Walter. Upon his return he became conductor of the University Symphony Orchestra; and founded the University of Michigan Little Symphony, which toured throughout the country. In 1940 he became conductor of the University Choral Union, and since 1947 has returned each spring to conduct at the May Festival. In World War II he served in the United States Army, conducting the first Army Sym?phony Orchestra, and later instructing at the Armed Forces School of Music at Shrivenham, England. In 1946, he conducted the Juilliard Orchestra, leaving to accept the directorship of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, a position he held for eleven seasons.
Since 1959 he has been head of orchestral activities at Northwestern Uni?versity, as well as a member of the President's Advisory Committee on the Arts, which sent him to Iceland, Czechoslovakia, Korea, The Philippines, and to Japan, for guest-conducting and surveys. He is also Director of the Peninsula Music Festival in Wisconsin, and the Chicago Little Symphony, which in this first season gave concerts from Mexico to Canada.
AARON COPLAND, born in Brooklyn, New York, on November 14, 1900, was educated in the public schools of Brooklyn, and graduated from Boys' High School in 1918. His sister first taught him the piano, his studies continuing with Leopold Wolfson, Victor Wittgenstein, and Clarence Adler. In 1917 he began to study theory with Rubin Goldmark, and in the summer of 1921 Copland enrolled as a student of composition at the newly established Fontaine-bleau School of Music in France, subsequently studying with Nadia Boulanger in Paris. During this period he also studied piano with Ricardo Vines. In 1924 he returned to the United States, where his compositions were first heard at a concert of the League of Composers. The following year he was the first composer awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. His first orchestral performance, a symphony for organ and orchestra, was given by Walter Damrosch and the New York Symphony Orchestra with Nadia Boulanger as organ soloist, in January, 1925. In 1930, he was the recipient of the $5,000 award from RCA Victor Company for his Dance Symphony. He is composer-chairman as well as a director of the League of Composers--I.S.C.M.; Vice-President of the Kous-sevitsky Music Foundation; and Director of the Edward MacDowell Association, the Walter W. Naumburg Music Foundation, and the American Music Center. For eight years he was President of the American Composers' Alliance. Inter?mittently he has taught composition at Harvard University, and at the Berk?shire Music Center, where he is Chairman of the faculty and head of the Composition Department. In 1942, Copland was elected a member of the National Institute of Arts and Letters, and in 1946 a member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers. In 1956, he received the Gold Medal for Music awarded by the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and an honorary Doctor of Music conferred by Princeton University. He has been increasingly busy as guest conductor of major symphony orchestras.
Further biographical material on Mr. Copland is found on pages 44 and 45.
NOTES ON FESTIVAL ARTISTS
LESTER McCOY, conductor of the University Choral Union since 1947, prepares the chorus for the extensive May Festival repertoire. Each December he conducts the Choral Union in its traditional "Messiah" presentations. He received his Master of Music degree from The University of Michigan in 1938. Prior to coming to Ann Arbor he trained and taught at Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa. He serves as Minister of Music of the First Methodist Church in Ann Arbor; and for the past three seasons has conducted the Michigan Chorale, a group of southern Michigan high school singers, which tours abroad each summer as part of the Youth for Understanding Student Exchange Program.
BIRGIT NILSSON was born at Svenstad in the township of West Karup, Sweden. She received her musical training at the Royal Musical Academy in Stockholm, making her debut at the Stockholm Opera in 1946. Her successes in Berlin, Vienna, Bayreuth, Glyndenbourne, Florence, Naples, and South America, were followed in 1956 by her first appearances in America, at the Hollywood Bowl and the San Francisco Opera. On December 18, 1959, her debut at the Metropolitan Opera as Isolde was a triumph which brought her in constant de?mand for concert and opera appearances throughout the world. The span of her repertoire is enormous. Her Wagnerian roles include Senta, Elsa, Elisabeth, Venus, Sieglinde, two Briinnhildes, and Isolde. Other composers in whose operas she has sung are: Strauss, Puccini, Verdi, Hindemith, Tchaikovsky, and Mozart. In private life she is the wife of a Stockholm restauranteur, Bertil Niklasson. They maintain homes both in Stockholm and Zurich.
JANICE HARSANYI, born and trained in America, now lives in Princeton, New Jersey. In addition to recitals and oratorio performances, Miss Harsanyi has been heard as soloist with many leading orchestras. Since her first appear?ance with the Philadelphia Orchestra in October of 1958, she has appeared as soloist ten times at the invitation of Mr. Ormandy, recently recording Orff's "Carmina Burana" with the Orchestra. Other appearances with orchestras included a gala performance at the United Nations with the Symphony of the Air, conducted by Leopold Stokowski; and solo appearances with the National Symphony Orchestra under Howard Mitchell, and the Little Orchestra of New York under Thomas Sherman. Her performances at the Ann Arbor May Fes?tival mark her first appearances here.
FRANCES GREER, Associate Professor of Voice in the University of Michigan School of Music, came to Ann Arbor in 1957, after nine years in leading roles at the Metropolitan Opera and the Philadelphia Opera Company. Her career has encompassed concert and recital tours throughout this country and in Europe, as well as summer opera engagements in Cleveland, Kansas City, Dallas, Houston, Memphis, and Detroit. She was soloist on CBS for three years and a recording artist for RCA. She is a graduate of Louisiana State University.
MARY MACKENZIE, a native New Yorker, was graduated from the Juilliard School of Music. One year ago she was chosen from among seventeen finalists as
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the winner of the Metropolitan Opera auditions--the award, a contract with the Metropolitan Opera. In 1955, Miss MacKenzie won the Walter W. Naum-berg Foundation Award, and was presented at New York's Town Hall. She has appeared in leading roles with the Chicago Lyric, the Dallas Civic, and the New Orleans Opera Companies; and on tour with the NBC Opera Company. Among her many awards are scholarships to Juilliard and Tanglewood, and the Bayreuth Master Class: a National Federation of Music Clubs award; the Alice Breen Memorial Prize.
DAVID LLOYD is Minneapolis-born. American-trained. On the recom?mendation of Dimitri Mitropoulos he studied at the Curtis Institute of Music, which granted him a special diploma. He joined the Navy in 1943. With his return to civilian life, he began his singing career in earnest. He has been heard repeatedly with the Boston Symphony, the New York Philharmonic, and the orchestras of Chicago, Cleveland, San Francisco, Los Angeles. Washington, and Pittsburgh. He has scored successes at Festivals in Glyndebourne, Prague, Edinburgh, and Athens; and in America, at the Berkshire Festival, Ravinia, and in several previous Ann Arbor Festivals. Last season he accepted a post as head of the Vocal Department at the University of Iowa, but continues an active recital and orchestral soloist career.
WILLIAM WARFIELD was born in Arkansas, but when a small child, moved to Rochester, New York. As a senior in high school there, he won the first prize in the competition of the National Music Educators' League. His award was a music scholarship with the Eastman School of Music at Rochester. He graduated and entered four years of military service, after which he returned for his master's degree. His career gained impetus in Broadway musicals, and later, an auspicious debut at Town Hall in 1950. This catapulted Warfield into the ranks of the great singers. He took part in many leading shows, notably the Gershwin opera, Porgy and Bess. Another memorable occasion was his performance as De Lawd in Green Pastures. He has been chosen on four occasions as a cultural emissary to foreign shores by the Department of State, and has been lauded on every continent across the seas.
ARA BERBERIAN, originally of Detroit, and a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, has launched into a busy career in concert and opera. Most recently, he appeared as soloist with the Little Orchestra Society of New York and the Goldowsky Grand Opera Theater, participating in cross?country tours of both organizations. He has been a star of the New Orleans Opera, and the Philadelphia Grand Opera Company: also the Clarion Concerts at New York's Town Hall. He has sung with the Dallas Symphony, the Pitts?burgh Symphony, Cincinnati Orchestra, Kansas City Orchestra, Milwaukee Symphony, and others. This will be his second May Festival appearance; his first was as a member of the University Choral Union, when he was selected to do the solo part in Brahms' "Triumphlied" at the 1953 May Festival.
JOHN BROWNING was born in Denver twenty-seven years ago. He made his orchestral debut at the age of ten, playing a Mozart concerto. Moving to
NOTES ON FESTIVAL ARTISTS
Los Angeles, he continued his piano training with Lee Pattison, his academic studies in public schools and at Occidental College. Later, in New York he attended the Juilliard School of Music on scholarship, studying with Madame Rosina Lhevinne. Since 1956, Mr. Browning has made five tours of Europe, and has toured extensively in the Near East, Mexico, and in the United States. In February, 1957, he gave six performances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. His career was then interrupted to enter the Army; but while still in uniform he was engaged as soloist at the Hollywood Bowl. He has won many significant honors, among them the Steinway Centennial Award in 1954, the Edgar M. Leventritt Award in 1955, and the Queen Elizabeth Gold Medal Award of the Concours International Musical in 1956. He represented the United States in recital at the Brussels Worlds' Fair in September of 1958, shortly thereafter making his triumphant New York recital debut.
EUGENE ISTOMIN was born in New York City in 1925. His training in music began very early. By ten he had entered a professional children's school in Manhattan, studying piano at the Mannes School of Music with Ralph Wolfe, later, with Sascha Gorodnitsky. In 1939, he entered the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and studied with Serkin and Horszowski. Winning the Philadelphia Orchestra Youth contest offered him his first appearance with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy. He won the Leventritt Award, which carried an appearance with the New York Philharmonic under Rodzinski. Appearances with all major United States orchestras followed. His recordings have been numerous. Nearly every year since 1950, when Istomin first became associated with Casals, he has performed in the succeeding festi?vals in Europe and in Puerto Rico. Since 1956, he has circled the globe three times in concert appearances. He appeared in Ann Arbor on one previous occa?sion in the Choral Union Series, October 1946.
ROBERT NOEHREN was born in Buffalo, New York; studied at Juilliard School of Music; and later won a scholarship to the Curtis Institute of Music, where he was a student of organ with Lynnwood Farnam. He studied composition under Hindemith. He received a Bachelor of Music degree at The University of Michigan, and an honorary degree from Davidson College. He has concertized and recorded extensively, having made six concert tours of Europe. Since 1949, he has held the position of head of the Organ Department of the School of Music at The University of Michigan.
ANSHEL BRUSILOW, Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra, is a native of Philadelphia, thirty-one years old, a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music. He entered the Institute at the age of eleven, where he studied with the famous violinist and Director of the School, Efrem Zimbalist. Later he continued under Dr. Jani Szanto at the Philadelphia Musical Academy, where he was a scholarship student, and was graduated from that institution. Engaged as concertmaster beginning the 1959-60 season, he has since frequently appeared as soloist. He is a member of the faculty of Temple University Department of Music, and conductor of the Temple Symphony Orchestra.
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LORNE M UN ROE has been principal cellist of the Philadelphia Orchestra for the past ten years. He was born in Winnipeg, Canada, in 1924. When he was ten, he toured Europe with British composer-pianist, Arthur Benjamin, and later studied at the Royal College of Music in London. He received further training at Curtis Institute under Felix Salmond and Gregor Piatigorsky; and while an undergraduate, won one of the Philadelphia Orchestra student concert auditions. In 1949, he won the coveted Naumberg Award, making his Town Hall debut the same year. Prior to coming to the Philadelphia Orchestra, he was a member of the Cleveland Orchestra, and principal cellist with the Minne?apolis Symphony. Mr. Munroe posseses one of the most valuable instruments in the orchestra--a Gofriller, made in Venice in 1707.
VERA ZORINA'S stage career began in Norway at the age of six; two years later she gave her first dance recital. A career as a prima ballerina first won her recognition, touring with her own ballet company in Europe, then in the Ballet Russe, before musical comedy and films provided her with other expressions of her art. Then straight dramatic roles, among them Shakespeare's "The Tempest," and a revival of "Louisiana Purchase" preceded her performances in the first American portrayal of Honegger's "Joan of Arc at the Stake" with the New York Philharmonic under the direction of Charles Munch. She has appeared as narrator in several first performances, recordings among which are the Honegger "Joan of Arc," and "A Parable of Death" (Lukas Foss).
HUGH NORTON was born in northern New York, where he later attended State College; then came to The University of Michigan where he received both his graduate degrees. He began at an early age to do professional stage work both as an actor and director, leading him to stock companies and Broadway, in both the theater and radio. For several years he made recordings of classics for the American Foundation for the Blind--under the aegis of the Library of Congress. For five years during the summers he did professional feature roles for the Mohawk Drama Festival of Union College in Schenectady, New York. He first directed a production in Hill Auditorium in 1941. Since 1945, Dr. Norton has directed plays for the Michigan Players of the Department of Speech at the University, which have included also two years as director of the operas presented in conjunction with the School of Music.
NANCY HEUSEL is a graduate of the University's Department of Speech. She lives in Ann Arbor, and has done extensive dramatic work in local produc?tions, including the Ann Arbor Civic Theater.
JERROLD SANDLER is a graduate of The University of Michigan, re?ceiving his master's degree in speech. He is producer-editor of the University's broadcasting service, and is currently responsible for a series of dramatic recordings of Greek drama.
MARVIN DISKIN, of Detroit, is a graduate student in the University's Department of Speech, where he is also on the staff in radio and television. He participates actively in the University Players of the Department of Speech.
THE UNIVERSITY CHORAL UNION
Thor Johnson, Guest Conductor Lester McCoy, Conductor George Hunsche, Pianist
FIRST SOPRANOS Abel, Mary L. Adler, Maryann L. Allen, Ruth M. Atkinson, Jeanne O. Bird, Ellen Anne Bradstreet, Lola M. Burr, Virginia A. Collie, Marilyn Cook, Mary Linda Dierking, Sharon L. Dorstewitz, Ellen M. Evatt, Margaret K. French, Nancy Alice Hanson, Gladys M. Huber, Sally Anne Hummel, Patricia I. Hutch, Lois Ann Jensen, Karen Fay Jerome, Ruth O. Johnson, Doris E. Lake, F. Mildred Leggett, Iris M. Lightfoot, Letitia J. Locy, Dorothy Ann Luecke, Doris L. Malan, Fannie Belle Matalavy, Ruth G. McDonald, Ruth M. McLeod, Barbara H. Melin, Ann Elizabeth Meyerson, Melody Peck, Laurel E. Pott, Margaret F. Rabson, Carolyn R. Ramee, Dorothy W. Ramee, Ellen K. Retzler, Ralian T. Robinson, K. Lisa Robinson, Susan A. Schlote, Gerda Sevilla, Josefina Skinner, Elizabeth B. Smith, Florence J. Spaulding, Patricia A. Stevens, Ethel C.
SECOND SOPRANOS Anderson, Barbara L. Buchanan, Gale F. Burns, Leslie E. Clark, Elaine C. Crayne, Gari L. Curtis, Margaret L.
Datsko, Doris Douglas, Roberta M. Dumler, Carole H. Erickson, Mary Ann Friedrich, Lynne Gunn, Katherine Heemstra, Lois Sue Hendrickson, Marianne Iafolla, Hazel Myrle Jones, Marion Anne Kalliondzi. Elizabeth Karapostoles, LaVaughn Q. Keller, Suellen Kellogg, Merlyn L. Kramer, Chris Marilyn McAdoo, Mary J. McNichoI, Marilyn K. Miller, Nandeen Morrison, Judith Myers, Sandra Fay Nelson, Delia Nessle, Paula A. Peckens, Virginia L. Pines, Laurie Beth Reisig, Anne Mills Rysse, Marguerite Skaff, Carolyn Anne Slazinski, Elaine M. Spoor, Lorelie Holly Steen, Sonja C. Stooddard, Lois L. Trautwein, Janet L. Vandeveer, Patricia B. Vig. Jeanne Marie Vlisides, Elena C. Waterhouse, H. Rosemary Wiers, Berenice Wilson Wolfe, Charlotte Anne Wylie, Winifred Jane
FIRST ALTO Auld. Janet R. Andrews, Joyce M. Baker, Janet Kay Barzler, Ann Elizabeth Beam, Eleanor Box, Linda Diane Church, Elizabeth K. Darling, Persis Evans, Daisy L. Eiteman, Sylvia C. Flynn, Eileen Deborah Fulton, Ann Adele L. Gross, Ruth A.
Hahn, Christel R. Hangas, Nancy D. Herrick, Sonnie Jo Hodgman, Dorothy B. James, Innez L. Jones, Mary Keller, Gail M. Lane, Rosemarie Lehiste, Use Manson, Hinda Markeson, Carole J. Marsh, Martha M. McCoy, Bernice Mehler, Hallie J. Mueller, Kay A. Murtaugh, Iris H. Peterson, Phyllis J. Robertson, Sharon L. Rubinstein, Sallie Saphire, Marilyn S. Sawyer, Sally Jo Scheiner, Carolyn Schuurmans, Marilyn J. Schwartz, Carla Rae Smalley, Joan W. Spurrier, Laura J. Swenson, Judith Ann Thomson, Jean Townsend, Mary E. Wentworth, Elizabeth B. Westerman, Carol F. Whitaker, Margaret C. Wiedmann, Louise P. Zeeb, Helen R.
SECOND ALTOS Arford, Wyntie M. Arnold, Helen M. Beardsley, Grace Blake, Susan Jane Bogart, Gertrude J. Crossley, Winnifred M. Cummings, Ann Damouth, Helen L. Detzer, Dorothy D. Dorney. Edith A. Enkemann, Gladys Eyre, Kathleen E. Farnsworth, Martha S. Foster, Vera L. Gault, Gertrude Y. George, Betty R. Grzesiek, Judith Ann Hockley, Barbara R.
UNIVERSITY CHORAL UNION
Huey, Geraldine E. Irwin, Christine M. Jenkins, Bernice Johnston, Theolia C. Katona, Marianna V. Katz, Jeannette D. Kemp, Katherine L. Kerwin, Judith M. Knight, Mona J. Kuiper, Lillian Jane Johnson, Grayce E. Lidgard, Ruth M. Liebscher, Erika Lovelace, Elsie W. Ludwig, Katherine A. Lutz, Elizabeth A. Mackle, Jennie Mahurin, Joan Marie Mastin, Neva M. Peterson, Carol G. Pfeffer, Jean Adele Rummel, Sally Lynne Runkle, Diane Ruth Schoon, Carol Jane Sorensen, Cynthia J. Stribe, Katherine M. Summers, Ann Elizabeth Sweeney, Ellen L. Wainger, Janice Sue Way, Annette Wilderson, Ida-Lorraine Wilbur, Althea L. Williams, Nancy P.
FIRST TENORS Baker, Hugh E. Bennett, Gene Lake Brandenburg, Kurt Edward Brewer, David Dutch Craven, James William Gade, Fred Eric Haering, Emil E. Hammer, Richard Edward Hartman, Robert Hendershott, Marcus Dee Hiatt, Robert Allan Hobbs, Arthur M. Johnson, Arthur G.
Aldwinkle, Robert Berger, John Cannell, Ted Cares, Chris Churchill, Stuart Cranson, Robert Jr. Davis, Alan Evans, Richard Fensler, Franklin Henry, George
Lowry, Paul T. Matthews, Donald E. Moore, Richard Pumplin, Jonathan Conrad Ramee, Allan L. Shovan, Timothy John Thompson, Frazier
SECOND TENORS Amette, James Beyer, Hilbert Carpenter, Gerald R. Dennison, Terry King Dimsa, Leonard Robert Fidler, William F. Glace, William Hartz, Theodore McDougall Humphrey, Richard Jackson, Daniel Klinesteker, Chase F. McHale, John C. Peterson, Bernard C. Raub, James R. Sain, Robert L. Spooner, Thomas E. E. Thomson, James William Tibbits, John Allen Toles, Harvey J., Jr. Walters, David Royal Yessie, William Ziegler, Max M., Jr.
FIRST BASSES Bartz, Gary Lynn Bates, Herman D. Beam, Marion L. Bowen, Max Edward Boyd, Jerry Lee Brueger, John Martin Burr, Charles F. Cathey, Owen B. Chase, John Proctor Clements, Peter John Damouth, David E. De Young, James Harold Dwyer, Donald Harris Farrar, Howard Hartwig, C. Dean Heiple, David
Hunsche, David Hunsche, Richard Kelly, George Rentes, Peter Kikuchi, Carl Morgan, Kenneth Murtaugh, Tim Pott, Timothy Robbins, David Rupas, Peter
Johnson, Harvey Clifford Kays, J. Warren Kazmierowski, John R. Kissel, Klair Kitchen, Kenneth R. Kochanowski, Alfred S. Lloyd, Richard Alan Long, Jerry R. Morgan, Douglass H. Pleska, Thomas A. Pullen, Frank D. Sandstrom, Mark Schteingart, Dr. David Stokeley, Donald Suydam, Ronald Giles Waterstripe, Robert Werder, Larry Frederick Wackrus, Frank Winkleman, Kenneth
5EC0ND BASSES Abdella, Victor M. Baker, Alan D. Barton, Ben F. Bird, Richard Nixon Blackwell, Walter Herman Briggs, Dean E. Clark Philip Maclean, Jr. Conrad, Janus Crosman, A. Hurford Eckert, Roger Lawrence Eichenbaum, Daniel M. Gall, Lawrence Arthur Headings, Verle Emery Herrmann, Lothar N.M.I. Hodges, Lawrence W. Huber, Franz Eugene Keller, Timothy William Kincaid, William H. Landgren, Robert C. Lipkea, William Harry McAdoo, William P. Natanson, Leo Nauman, John D. Peterson, Robert Ross Steinmetz, George P. Upton, John Vandeveer, James F. Werner, Peter Christian
Scherdt, Donald Shaltis, Larry Simmons, Charles Sprentall, John Steinke, Jerry Trabandt, Terry Van Esmond, Allen Wall, Tom Warner, Allen Westerman, Kenneth
THE PHILADELPHIA ORCHESTRA
Eugene Ormandy, Music Director and Conductor William Smith, Assistant Conductor
Roger G. Hall, Manager Joseph H. Santarlasci, Assistant Manager
Conccrtmaster Madison, David
Associate Concertmasttr Sbulik, Morris Reynolds, Veda Ruden, Sol Lusak, Owen Costanzo, Frank Saam, Frank E. Grunschlag, David Simkins, Jasha Stahl, Jacob Putlitz, Lois Goldstein, Ernest L. Simkin, Meyer Gesensway, Louis Arben, David Schmidt, Henry W.
Rosen, Irvin Schwartz, Isadore Wigler, Jerome Di Camillo, Armand Eisenberg, Irwin I. Tung, Ling Sharlip, Benjamin Black, Norman Ludwig, Irving Dreyfus, George Miller, Charles S. Roth, Manuel Lanza, Joseph Gorodetzky, Aaron Light, Herbert Kaufman, Schima
Cooley, Carlton Mogill, Leonard Braverman, Gabriel Curtiss, Sidney Ferguson, Paul Primavera, Joseph P., Jr. Iglitzin, Alan Kaplow, Maurice Bogdanoff, Leonard Granat, Wolfgang Kahn, Gordon Greenberg, William S.
VIOLONCELLOS Munroe, Lome Hilger, Elsa Gorodetzer, Harry de Pasquale, Francis Druian, Joseph Belenko, Samuel Brennand, Charles Saputelli, William Farago, Marcel Caserta, Santo Phillips, Bert Stokking, William, Jr.
BASSES Scott, Roger M. Torello, Carl Arian, Edward Maresh, Ferdinand Eney, F. Gilbert Lazzaro, Vincent Strassenberger, Max Batchelder, Wilfred Gorodetzer, Samuel
FLUTES Pellerite, James Cole. Robert F. Terry, Kenton F. Krell, John C. Piccolo
de Lancie, John Raper, Wayne Morris, Charles M. Rosenblatt. Louis English Horn
Gigliotti, Anthony M. Montanaro, Donald Serpentini, Jules J. Lester, Leon Bass Clarinet
Montanaro, Donald BASSOONS
Garfield, Bernard H.
Angelucci, A. L.
Del Negro, F. Contra Bassoon
HORNS Jones, Mason Hale, Leonard Fearn, Ward O. Mayer, Clarence Lannutti, Charles Pierson, Herbert
TRUMPETS Johnson, Gilbert Krauss, Samuel Rosenfeld, Seymour Rehrig, Harold W. Hering, Sigmund
TROMBONES Smith, Henry C. Ill Brown, Keith Cole, Howard Harper, Robert S. Bass Trombone
Torchinsky, Abe Batchelder, Wilfred
Hinger, Fred D. Bookspan, Michael
BATTERY Owen, Charles E. Bookspan, Michael Abel, Alan Roth, Manuel
CELESTA, PIANO, AND ORGAN
Putlitz, Lois HARPS
DeCray, Marcella LIBRARIAN
Taynton, Jesse C. PERSONNEL MANAGER
Schmidt, Henry W. STAGE PERSONNEL
Barnes, Edward Manager
Hauptle, Theodore E.
Sweeney, James PHOTO PUBLICITY
MUSICAL SOCIETY ORCHESTRA
Lester McCoy, Conductor Thor Johnson, Guest Conductor
Green, Elizabeth Concertmaster Bloom, Lynn Fossenkemper, Neva Joseph, Alice Merte, Herman Miller, Susan Perejda, Cynthia Rainaldi, Mary Rupert, Jeanne
Tirrell, Louise, Principal Alexander, Ellen Cary, Nora Jensen, Peter Lake, Ruth Mary Pannitch, Ellen Tate, Barbara Wise, Carolyn
Wilson, George, Principal
Krbechek, Blanche Mueller
Gabrion, Janet, Principal Amos, Connie Corrello, Clyde Dunne, Tom Farrar, Rodney Gabrion, Charles Goldberg, Carl Merrill, Elizabeth Raike, William
Spring, Peter, Principal Brinker, Gerald Dealy, John Smith, Pat Teeple, John Wigginton, Richard
Cowan, Connie Rearick, Martha
Bradley, Gertrude Sheldrup, Louise
Farrer, John Shaw, Larry Ober, Carol
BASS CLARINET Buss, Arthur
BASSOONS Barris, Robert Lehman, Paul Williams, James
HORNS Stout, Louis Schneider, Vincent Kohn, Judith Shubart, Richard
TRUMPETS Carbon, Dale Gillis, Donald Lindeneau, John Tison, Donald Wolters, David
TROMBONES Mattison, Thomas Eickmann, Paul Christie, John
TIMPANI Clay, Omar McCluskey, Fred
MANAGER AND LIBRARIAN Ungar, Edward
A combined list of personnel participating with the Choral Union in the two Messiah performances and in preparation for the May Festival choral works.
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
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-
Calvin B. Cady, 1879-1888 Albert A. Stanley, 1888-1921 Earl V. Moore, 1922-1939
Thor Johnson, 1939-1942 Hardin Van Deursen, 1943-1947 Thor Johnson (Guest), 1947-Lester McCoy, Associate Conductor, 1947-1956; Conductor, 1956-
Ross Spence (Secretary) 1893-1896 Thomas C. Colburn (Secretary) 1897-1902 Charles K. Perrine (Secretary) 1903-1904
Charles A. Sink (Executive Secretary, 1904-1927); President, 1927-Gail W. Rector (Assistant to the President, 1945-1954); Executive Director, 1957-
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY, which this year observes its eighty-second season, was organized during the winter of 1879-80, and was incor?porated in 1881. Its purpose was to maintain a choral society and an orchestra, to provide public concerts, and to organize and maintain a school of music which would offer instruction comparable to that of the University in its schools and colleges. Ars longa vita brevis was adopted as its motto.
THE UNIVERSITY CHORAL UNION was an outgrowth of a "Messiah Club," made up of singers from several local churches. For a decade and a half, assisted by distinguished professional artists and organizations, it partici?pated in numerous Choral Union concerts. In 1894, as a climax to its offerings, the "First Annual May Festival" was inaugurated. Gradually the number of con?certs in the Choral Union Series was increased to ten; and the May Festival, from three to six concerts. In 1946, with the development of musical interest, a sup?plementary series of concerts was added--the Extra Concert Series. Handel's Messiah, which had been performed at intervals through the years, became an annual production; and since 1946 has been heard in two performances each season. In 1941, an annual Chamber Music Festival of three concerts was in?augurated. Thus, at the time of its eighty-second year, the Musical Society has presented throughout the season, twenty-nine major concerts performed by dis?tinguished artists and organizations, both American and foreign.
The "Ann Arbor School of Music" was organized in 1879, and in 1892 was reorganized as the "Univer?sity School of Music." In 1929, the University provided partial support, and students and faculty were given University status. In 1940, the University Musical Society relinquished full control and responsibility for the School to The University of Michigan.
THE ANN ARBOR MAY FESTIVAL
Maintained by the University Musical Society and founded by Albert A. Stanley and his associates in the Board of Directors in 1894
Albert A. Stanley, 1894-1921 Earl V. Moore, 1922-1939
Thor Johnson, 1940-1942 Hardin Van Deursen, 1943-1946 Thor Johnson (Guest), 1947-
Gustav Hoist (London, England),
1923, 1932 Howard Hanson (Rochester), 1926,
1927, 1933, 1935 Felix Borowski (Chicago), 1927 Percy Grainger (Australia), 1928
Jose Iturbi (Philadelphia), 1937 Georges Enesco (Paris), 1939 Harl McDonald (Philadelphia),
1939, 1940, 1944
Virgil Thomson (New York), 1959 Aaron Copland (New York), 1961
ORGANIZATIONS The Boston Festival Orchestra, Emil Mollenhauer, Conductor, 1894-1904.
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Frederick Stock, Conductor, 1905-1935; Eric De Lamarter, Associate Conductor, 1918-1935.
The Philadelphia Orchestra, Leopold Stokowski, Conductor, Saul Caston and Charles O'Connell, Associate Conductors, 1936; Eugene Ormandy, Con?ductor, 1937, 1938; Eugene Ormandy, Conductor, Saul Caston, Associate Conductor, 1939-1945; Eugene Ormandy, Conductor, Alexander Hilsberg, Associate Conductor, 1946-1953, and Guest Conductor, 1953; Eugene Ormandy, Conductor, 1954-; William Smith, Assistant Conductor, 1957-.
The University Choral Union, Albert A. Stanley, Conductor, 1894-1921; Earl V. Moore, Conductor, 1922-1939; Thor Johnson, Conductor, 1940-1942; Har?din Van Deursen, Conductor, 1943-1947; Thor Johnson, Guest Conductor, 1947-; Lester McCoy, Associate Conductor, 1947-1956, and Conductor, 195 7-.
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, 1940-1942; Marguerite Hood, 1943-1956; Geneva Nelson, 1957; Marguerite Hood, 1958.
UNIVERSITY CHORAL UNION REPERTOIRE
Bach: Mass in B minor (excerpts)--1923, 1924, 192S (complete), 19S3
Magnificat in D major--1930, 19S0 Beethoven: Missa Solemnis in D major, Op. 123--1927, 1947, 19SS
Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125--1934, 1942, 1945 Berlioz: The Damnation of Faust--1895, 1909, 1920, 1952 Bizet: Carmen--1904, 1918, 1927, 1938 Bloch: "America," An Epic Rhapsody--1929
Sacred Service (Parts 1, 2, 3)--1958 Bossi: Paradise Lost--1916
Brahms: Requiem, Op. 45--1899 (excerpts), 1929, 1941, 1949 Alto Rhapsodie, Op. 53--1939 Song of Destiny, Op. 54--1950 Song of Triumph, Op. 55--1953 Bruch: Arminius-1897, 1905
Fair Ellen, Op. 24--1904, 1910 Odysseus--1910
Bruckner: Te Deum laudamus--1945 Carey: "America"--1915
Chabrier: Fete Polonaise from Le Roi malgre lui--1959 Chadwick: The Lily Nymph--1900 ChAvez, Carlos: Corrido de "El Sol"--1954t, I960 Delius: Sea Drift--1924 Dvorak: Stabat Mater, Op. 58--1906 Elcar: Caractacus--1903, 1914, 1936
The Dream of Gerontius. Op. 38--1904, 1912, 1917 Fogg: The Seasons--1937 Franck: The Beatitudes--1918 Gabrieli: In Ecdesiis benedicto domino--1958 Gianntni: Canticle of the Martyrs--1958 Gluck: Orpheus--1902
Goldmark: The Queen of Sheba (March)--1923 Gomer, Li.ywel.yn: Gloria in Excelsis--1949 Gounod: Faust--1902, 1908, 1919
Grainger, Percy: Marching Song of Democracy--1928 Hadley: "Music," An Ode, Op. 75--1919 Handel: Judas Maccabeus--1911 Messiah--1907, 1914 Solomon--1959
Hanson, Howard: Songs from "Drum Taps"--1935 Heroic Elegy--1927 The Lament for Beowulf--1926 Merry Mount--1933 Haydn: The Creation--1908, 1932
The Seasons--1909, 1934 Heger: Ein Friedenslied, Op. 19--1934t Holst: A Choral Fantasia--1932t A Dirge for Two Veterans--1923 The Hymn of Jesus--1923t First Choral Symphony (excerpts)--1927f Honegcer, Arthur: King David--1930, 1935, 1942
"Jeanne d'Arc au buchcr"--1961 KodAly: Psalmus Hungaricus, Op. 13--1939 Lambert, Constant: Summer's Last Will and Testament--1951t Lockwood, Normand: Prairie--1953
World premiere t American premiere t United States premiere
UNIVERSITY CHORAL UNION REPERTOIRE
McDonald, Harl: Symphony No. 3 ("Lamentations of Fu Hsuan")--1939 Mendelssohn: Elijah--1901, 1921, 1926, 1944, 19S4, 1961
Menndt, Peter: Symphony No. 4, "The Cycle"--19S0 Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov--1931, 193S Mozart: Great Mass in C minor, K. 427--1948
Requiem Mass in D minor, K. 626--1946
"Davidde penitente"--1956 Orff, Carl: Carmina Burana--1955 Parker: Hora Novissima, Op. 30--1900 Pierne: The Children's Crusade--1915
Saint Francis of Assisi--1928, 1931 Ponchielli: La Gioconda--1925 Poulenc: Secheresses--1959 Prokofiev: Alexander Nevsky, Op. 78--1946 Rachmaninoff: The Bells--1925, 1938, 1948 Respichi: La Primavera--1924t Rlmsky-Korsakov: The Legend of Kitesh--1932t Rossini: Stabat Mater--1897
Satnt-Saens: Samson and Delilah--1896, 1899, 1907, 1912, 1916, 1923, 1929, 1940, 1958 Schoenberc: Gurre-Liedcr--1956
Schuman, William: A Free Song (Cantata No. 2)--1945 Sibelius: Onward Ye Peoples--1939, 1945 Smith, J. S.: Star Spangled Banner--1919, 1920 Stanley: Chorus Triumphalis, Op. 14--1897, 1912, 1921
Fair Land of Freedom--1919
Hymn of Consecration--1918
"Laus Deo," Choral Ode--1913, 1943
A Psalm of Victory, Op. 8--1906 Stock: A Psalmodic Rhapsody--1922. 1943 Stravinsky: Symphonie de psaumes--1932, 1960 Sullivan: The Golden Legend--1901 Tchaikovsky: Episodes from Eugen Onegin--1911, 1941 Thompson, Randall: Alleluia--1941
Vardell, Charles: Cantata, "The Inimitable Lovers"--1940 Vaughan Williams, Ralph: Five Tudor Portraits--1957
"Flos Campi"--1959 Verdi: Aida--1903, 1906, 1917, 1921, 1924 (excerpts), 1928, 1937, 1957
La Forza del Destino (Finale, Act II)--1924
Requiem Mass--1894, 1898, 1913, 1920, 1930, 1936, 1943, 1951, 1960
Villa-Lobos, Heitor: Chores No. 10, "Rasga o corac,ao"--1949, 1960 Vivaldi-Casella: Gloria--1954 Wagner: Die ftiegende Hollander--1918
Lohengrin--1926; Act 1--1896, 1913
Die Ateistersinger, Finale to Act III--1903, 1913; Choral, "Awake," and Chorale Finale to Act III--1923
Scenes from Parsifal--1937
Tannhauser--1902, 1922; March and Chorus--1896; "Venusberg" Music--1946 Walton, William: Belshazzar's Feast--1933, 1952 Wolf-Ferrari: The New Life, Op. 9--1910, 1915, 1922, 1929
t American premiere
1960 UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY-1961
Resume of Concerts and Music Performed
Concerts--Twenty-nine events were presented as listed below. The total number of appearances of the respective artists and organizations, under the auspices of the University Musical Society, is given in parentheses.
Eighty-second Annual Choral Union Series
Mary Curtis-Verna, Soprano ..............................................October 6
Boston Symphony Orchestra, (41); Charles Munch, conductor, (17) ..........October 29
Van Cliburn, Pianist, (2) ...............................................November 2
Krsmanovich Chorus of Yugoslavia; Bogdan Babich, conductor ............November 6
Artur Rubinstein, pianist, (10)...........................................November 14
Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra; Witold Rowicki, conductor ................January 18
Henry Szeryng, violinist ..................................................February 14
Brian Sullivan, tenor (2) .................................................February 28
Dallas Symphony Orchestra; Paul Kletzki, conductor .........................March 10
Toronto Symphony Orchestra (2); Walter Susskind, conductor ................March IS
Soloist: Ilona Kombrink, soprano, (2)
Fifteenth Annual Extra Concert Series
Jerome Hines, bass, (2) ...................................................October 17
Van Cliburn, pianist ......................................................October 31
Robert Shaw Chorale and Orchestra, (5); Robert Shaw, conductor, (5) .....January 12
Zino Franccscatti, violinist, (5) ............................................March 21
Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam, (2); Eugen Jochum, conductor........April 23
Handel's Messiah .................................................. December 3 and 4
Phyllis Curtin, soprano Donald Bell, bass
Evelyn Beal, contralto Mary McCall Stubbins, organist, (29)
Walter Carringer, tenor Lester McCoy, conductor, (27)
University Choral Union Musical Society Orchestra
Twenty-first Annual Chamber Music Festival Vienna Octet ................................................... February 17, 18, 19
Michigan Chorale, (2), Lester McCoy, Conductor, (2)......................September 13
Solisti di Zagreb ........................................................November 7
Budapest Quartet, (31) .....................................................March 26
Sixty-eighth Annual May Festival
Six concerts--May 4, 5, 6, 7
The Philadelphia Orchestra. (158); Conductors: Eugene Ormandy, (88); Thor Johnson, (45); William Smith, (5); University Choral Union, (236); and soloists-Birgit Nilsson, soprano Ara Berberian, bass
Janice Harsanyi, soprano John Browning, pianist
Frances Greer, soprano Eugene Istomin, pianist, (2)
Mary MacKenzie, contralto Robert Noehren, organist
David Lloyd, tenor, (12) Anshel Brusilow. violinist, (2)
William Warfield, baritone, (4) Lome Munroe, violoncellist, (2)
Vera Zorina and Hugh Norton Nancy Heusel, Jerrold Sandier, and Marvin Diskin
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Repertoire--The complete repertoire of the concerts this season includes music which represents a wide range of musical forms and periods. The compositions, classified into categories of (1) symphonic; (2) instrumental (by chamber music groups and virtuoso artists); (3) vocal (solo); and (4) choral with orchestra, are listed below. Works first performed here are denoted by asterisks.
Beethoven ?Overture, "The Consecration of
the House," Op. 124..........Toronto
Symphony No. 3 in E-flat major,
Op. 55 ("Eroica").....Concertgebouw
Brahms Symphony No. 1 in C minor,
Variations on a Theme by
Haydn, Op. 56a................Dallas
Suite from "The Tender
?Variations, Chaconne and Finale.. .Boston Dvorak ?Symphony No. 2 in D minor,
Symphony in D minor............Boston
?Symphony in C minor, No. 95.....Dallas
?Symphony in B-flat major, No. 98. .Boston Hovhaness
?"Mysterious Mountain" Op. 132___Dallas
Kabalevsky Overture "Colas Breugnon". ..Philadelphia
?Mazurka, from "Straszny Dwor". .Warsaw Piston
?Symphony No. 7...........Philadelphia
Rachmaninoff Symphony No. 2 in
E minor, Op. 27..........Philadelphia
?Vocalise, Op. 34, No. 14......Philadelphia
"Daphnis and Chloe," Ballet Suite No. 2.........Philadelphia
Overture to "The Bartered Bride".......................Warsaw
Tone Poem from "Don Juan," Op. 20.....Concertgebouw
Tchaikovsky Overture to "Romeo and Juliet"___Dallas
Siegfried's Death and Funeral March from "GStterdammemng". .Philadelphia
Siegfried's Rhine-Journey, from "Gotterdammerung". .Philadelphia
Overture to "Die Meistersinger" ............Philadelphia
Prelude to Act I, and Love-Death, From "Tristan and
Isolde" .......Nilsson and Philadelphia
"Andante and Allegro," from
Sonata in A minor..........Francescatti
?Sonata, Op. 26..............Van Cliburn
?"Toccata Festiva" for Organ and
Orchestra.....Noehren and Philadelphia
Beethoven Quartet in A major,
Op. 18, No. S.........Budapest Quartet
Quartet in C major,
Op. 59, No. 3.........Budapest Quartet
Quartet in B-flat major,
Op. 130..............Budapest Quartet
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Sonata No. 7 in C minor,
Op 30, No. 2..................Szeryng
?Septet in E-flat major,
Op. 20...................Vienna Octet
Concerto in B-flat major for Violoncello and strings...............Janigro with
Solisti Di Zagreb Brahms
Clarinet Quintet in B minor,
Op US..................Vienna Octet
Concerto in A minor, Op. 102, for Violin, Cello and Orchestra.. .Brusilow and Munroe with Philadelphia Hungarian Dance No. 7............Szeryng
Chopin Ballade in A-flat major,
Op. 47, No. 3.............Van Cliburn
Etude in C-sharp minor,
Op. 10, No. 4...............Rubinstein
Etude in G-flat major,
Op. 10, No. S...............Rubinstein
Etude in C minor,
Op. 10, No. 12.............Rubinstein
Etude in E minor,
Op. 25, No. S...............Rubinstein
Fantasia in F minor, Op. 49. .Van Cliburn
Scherzo in C-sharp minor,
Op. 39, No. 3.............Van Cliburn
Sonata No. 2 in B-flat minor,
Op. 35...................Van Cliburn
Sonata No. 3 in B minor,
Op. 58....................Van Cliburn
Waltz No. 5 in A-flat major,
Debussy Sonate .........................Szeryng
Falla Ritual Fire Dance.............Rubinstein
Franck, Cesar Prelude, Chorale, and Fugue in B minor...................Rubinstein
Gershwin "Rhapsody in Blue".......Browning and Philadelphia
Handel ?Sonata No. 1................Francescatti
Haydn ?Divertimento in G major.........Vienna
Kelemen ?Concertante Improvisations.......Zagreb
?Sonata in D major..............Szeryng
Liszt Sonata in B minor...........Van Cliburn
?Concerto No. 2 in D minor for Piano and Orchestra... .Browning and Philadelphia
?Divertimento in D major, K. 136.. .Zagreb ?Divertimento No. 10 in F major,
K. 247...................Vienna Octet
?Divertimento No. IS in B-flat major,
K. 287...................Vienna Octet
?Divertimento No. 17 in D major,
K. 334...................Vienna Octet
Poot ?Octet......................Vienna Octet
Prokofieff Marche from Love for Three
Sonata in D major,
Visions Fugitive, Op. 22
(12 Pieces) ................Rubinstein
Rachmaninoff Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18.......Istomin and Philadelphia
Roussel ?Sinfonietta, Op. 52...............Zagreb
Sapasate Spanish Dance..................Szeryng
Schubert Octet in F major, Op. 166___Vienna Octet
Carnaval, Op. 9...............Rubinstein
Shostakovich Prelude ....................Francescatti
Stravinsky ?Duo Concertante............Francescatti
Suk ?Love Poem.....................Szeryng
?Violin Concerto No. 1,
Op. 35 ......Wilkomirska and Warsaw
?"Allegro giusto," from Octet. .Vienna Octet
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Concerto in C minor for Strings. .Zagreb ?Concerto in E major for Violin
and Strings... .Stanic, Jelka, and Zagreb
The Concerti of the Seasons, Op. 8 ........................Zagreb
Prole do Bebe................Rubinstein
?Sleep Now ................Curtis-Verna
Song of the Flea..................Hines
Aria, "Flower Song" from Carmen ................Sullivan
Bridge ?Love Went a-Riding............Sullivan
?Poeme de 1'Amour et de la Mer,
Op. 19........Kombrink with Toronto
Cilea Lamento di Federico from
O del mio amato ben......Curtis-Verna
?Spirate pur, spirate.............Sullivan
Duke ?Morning in Paris...........Curtis-Verna
Duparc "L'Invitation au voyage"...........Hines
Felconieri ?Occhietti amait....................Hines
Go Down, Moses..................Hines
?He Never Said a Mumblin' Word. .Hines
Giaxnini ?Tell Me, Oh Blue, Blue Sky. .Curtis-Verna
?Amor ti victa from Fedora......Sullivan
Grieg "Ein Traum"...................SuUivan
Recitative and aria, "Sound an Alarm," from Judas Maccabaeus
?What Land Is This," from
Where'er You Walk, from
?"Largo" from Xerxes..............Hines
?Aubade, from Le Roi d'Ys......Sullivan
Lehmann Recitative and Air, Ah, Moon of
My Delight ..................Sullivan
A Little Song of Life............Sullivan
Mozart Aria, "Den vieni alia finestra,
Leporello's Aria, "Madamina" from
Aria, "Non piu andrai" from The
Marriage of Figaro..............Hines
Se tu m'ami sesospiri........Curtis-Vema
Puccdji Aria, "E lucevan le stelle" from
Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal.. .Sullivan Ravel
"Asie," from Sheherazade.... Curtis-Verna "La Flute enchantee" from
?Brother Will, Erother John........Hines
?Gia il sole dal Gange.......Curtis-Verna
?Traum durch die Dammerung... .Sullivan ?Wiegenlied ................Curtis-Verna
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Mit deinen blauen Augen___Curtis-Verna
Zueignung .... Sullivan and Curtis-Vema Heimliche aufforderung..........Sullivan
"Le Tambour major," from Le Caid .......................Hines
Aria, "Ernani involami" from Ernani ................. Curtis-Vema
Aria, "Pace, pace, mio Dio" from
La Forza del Destino......Curtis-Verna
Brunhilde's Immolation and Closing Scene from Gotterdammerung
..........Nilsson and Philadelphia
"Einsam in truben Tagen" (Elsa's Dream) from Lohengrin, Act. I
..........Nilsson and Philadelphia
"Liebestod" from Tristan and Isolde
..........Nilsson and Philadelphia
?Due villote del fiore
(Two Flower Dances)___Krsmanovich
We Need Thee,
Oh Lord.............Michigan Chorale
Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied___Shaw
?Evening Song of
the Weary...........Michigan Chorale
A Ceremony of Carols.............Shaw
Ecce Saccrdos..........Michigan Chorale
Brahms ?In stiller Nacht............Krsmanovich
Byrd ?Ave Verum Corpus... .Michigan Chorale
Carissimi ?Jephthah ........................Shaw
Dan on ?Kozara ...................Krsmanovich
Finney, Ross Lee Four Songs (Pilgrim Psalms)
?He's Got the Whole World In His
Hands (spiritual)... .Michigan Chorale ?Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho
(spiritual) ..........Michigan Chorale
?Let Us Break Bread
?Po jezeru bliz Triglava......Krsmanovich
Soon Ah Will Be Done
?Umog dike ................Krsmanovich
Jadovanka za Teletom......Krsmanovich
Messiah .................Chorale Union
Haymj ?"The Sayings of the Saviour on the
Cross" from Seven Last Words.. .Shaw Hercigonja
Hon'xecger Joan of Arc
.... Chorale Union and Philadelphia Keyes
?Waves of the Amur........Krsmanovich
Elijah... .Chorale Union and Philadelphia Monteverdi ?"Credo," from Messa a quattro voci
An Instrument of Thy
Peace ..............Michigan Chorale
Price, Percival ?Song of the Bell, for carillon and
Rodgers ?Selections from South
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
?Requiem: Njest Sviat......Krsmanovich
Sibelius ?Onward Ye People......Michigan Chorale
Skalovski ?Humoreska ...............Krsmanovich
?Vospojte Gospodi, iz "Cetiri Duhovni Stiha" from Four Religious
Vesnijkov The Rowan Tree..........Krsmanovich
Classification Number of Compositions First Performances at these Concerts Composers Represented
Symphonic ........................ 28 61 53 43 12 22 23 39 20 32 33 31
Vocal .. .....
Totals . 185 96 Less duplicati 116 3ns -19
Concerts for the 1961-1962 Season
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
CHORAL UNION SERIES
George London, Bass..........Wednesday, October 4
Roger Wagner Chorale..........Thursday, October 19
Boston Symphony Orchestra......2:30, Sunday, October 22
Charles Munch, Conductor
Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra......Friday, November 3
Herbert von Karajan, Conductor ?Bayanihan (Philippine Songs and Dances) . . Monday, November 6
Yehudi Menuhin, Violinist......2:30, Sunday, November 12
Galina Vishnevskaya, Soprano......Tuesday, November 21
Emil Gilels, Pianist...........Tuesday, February 13
Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra . . . . 2:30, Sunday, March 4
Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Conductor ?American Ballet Theatre.........Saturday, March 24
?Mazowsze (Polish Songs and Dances).....Tuesday, October 24
Cleveland Orchestra.........Thursday, November 16
George Szell, Conductor
Rudolf Serkin, Pianist.........Monday, November 27
Boston Pops Tour Orchestra.....2:30, Sunday, February 18
Arthur Fiedler, Conductor Leontyne Price, Soprano..........Monday, March 12
Boston Symphony Orchestra . . (homecoming) Saturday, October 21
Charles Munch, Conductor
Messiah (annual Christmas concerts) . . 8:30, Saturday, December 3
2:30, Sunday, December 4
Ilona Kombrink, Soprano Ara Berberian, Bass
Lili Chookasian, Contralto Mary McCall Stubbins, Organist
Richard Miller, Tenor Lester McCoy, Conductor
University Choral Union and Orchestra
CHAMBER MUSIC CONCERTS
New York Pro Musica........2:30, Sunday, October 29
Richard Dyer-Bennet, Classical Folk Singer . . . Friday, January 12
Chamber Music Festival (3 concerts).....February 23, 24, 25
Juilliard Quartet; Eger Players; Beaux Arts Trio
ANN ARBOR MAY FESTIVAL
The Philadelphia Orchestra..........May 3, 4, 5, 6
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor; guest conductors and soloists.
?Note--The events designated by asterisks will utilize special stage sets, lighting, and curtain, to enhance the productions. These innovations make possible presentation of certain staged musical and dance groups not previously considered for Hill Auditorium.
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY