UMS Concert Program, February 8, 1965: Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra --
Complete Series: 3455
Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
1964 Eighty-sixth Season 196S
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
Charles A. Sink, President Gail W. Rector, Executive Director Lester McCoy, Conductor
Seventh Concert Eighty-sixth Annual Choral Union Series Complete Series 3453
Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra
STANISLAW SKROWACZEWSKI, Conductor
Soloist: HENRYK SZERYNG, Violinist
Monday Evening, February 8, 1965, at 8:30 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Concert Music for Strings and Brass Instruments . . Hindemith
Moderate speed, with force Lively; slow; lively
Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, Xo. 2 .... Szymanowski
Moderato; cadenza; allegremente molto energico Andantino, allegremente animato (Played without pause)
?Symphony No. 5 in E minor, Op. 64 .... Tchaikovsky
Andante; allegro con anima
Andante cantabile, con alcuna licenza Valse: allegro moderato
Finale: andante maestoso; allegro; allegro vivace
Recorded by the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra on Mercury Living Presence Records.
Note.--The University Musical Society has presented the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra in the Choral Union Series on five previous occasions.
ARS LONGA VITA BREVIS
PROGRAM NOTES by Paul S. Ivory
Concert Music for Strings and Brass Instruments . . . Paul Hindemith
Hindemith was born in Hanau, near Frankfurt, on November 16, 189S, and died December 28, 1963, in Frankfurt. His Concert Music was composed in 1930 for the Boston Symphony's fiftieth anniversary, and they first performed it on March 4, 1931, with Koussevitzky conducting.
Although Hindemith lived in the United States for many years and taught in several universities (the longest time at Yale), he was never an American musically, though he became a citizen in 1946. He followed the German line deriving from Bach and Beethoven and was influenced by Brahms, Strauss, and Wagner, the latter through Reger. He wrote all kinds of music: large-scale operatic music, symphonies and other big orchestral works, chamber music (including a series of sonatas with piano accom?paniment for practically all the winds and strings), music for professionals, amateurs, children, and debutantes, music for films, marionettes, bands, and mechanical pianos. And the lists, in most categories, are long. Besides the music, there are important peda?gogical works--books on fundamental musicianship and advanced harmony and theory.
He was above all, a practical man. He played viola in theaters as early as age eleven. His theorizing, which was considerable, he kept rooted in practice. Gebrauchs-musik, music for use, was an early enthusiasm. His feeling for the past, especially the Reformation, expressed itself in a neoclassicism which made counterpoint natural and clarity of texture and form more important than color. Jazz elements were often included. Hindemith emphasized the basic necessity of communication between com?poser and public.
His harmony became reasoned extensions of earlier methods, usable today and taking notice of all twelve tones. The harmonic triad is unabashedly present, often at beginnings and ends of pieces. He made considerable use of bitonality or of two or more keys at once between times and did not avoid dissonance.
The easiest way to think of Hindemith's work is in two parts: the early, forma?tive period of satire, impersonality, even of harshness; and the latter, mellowed period of lyricism, neoromanticism, and versatility, as exemplified tonight. Concert Music for Strings and Brass Instruments should present few difficulties to the listener. It is unpre?tentious, pleasant, strong music with a few simple and beautiful thoughts relieving the tension, some exciting rhythms, and a general air of festivity.
Concerto for Violin and Orchestra No. 2, Op. 35 . . Karol Szymanowski
Szymanowski was born at Timoshovka in the Ukraine, Russia, September 21, 1883; he died near Lausanne, Switzerland on March 29, 1937. He was a Polish nationalist,
nevertheless. The Slav intensity is surely in his music, combined though it is with Impressionism, which, after all, was the Frenchman Debussy's creation.
But it includes, also, considerable chromaticism, some atonal and polytonal ele?ments, and shows the influence of ancient Polish folk music from the mountains and the modal melodies with their irregular rhythms that Poles have long loved.
The concerto tonight is the composer's second of two for violin, first performed in Warsaw on October 6, 1933. Szymanowski was a pianist himself, but the violin concertos have a special worth of their own and have been needlessly neglected here and abroad.
The latter part of his work has been most admired. A Stabat Mater, 1928, based on music from Tatra mountain dwellers, showed his ability to use such material in a way significant outside his native land, as well as inside it. His treatment of the mazurka goes far beyond Chopin's. According to Kolinsky, "Everything they [the mazurkas] contain of the meeting of East and West is very instructive . . . After Chopin, Karol Szymanowski is the most representative composer of Poland . . ."
Symphony No. 5, in E minor, Op. 64 ... Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky was born May 7, 1840 in Votinsk, district of Viatka, Russia; he died in St. Petersburg, November 6, 1893. His fifth symphony was com?posed in 1888 and first performed November 17 of that year in St. Petersburg, with the composer conducting.
Standing between the more Russian fourth and the long wail of the sixth, the fifth is probably Tchaikovsky's greatest work of construction in the field of symphony composing. It made its way slowly to recognition, however, his brother Modest being of the opinion that this was owing to the fact that Peter conducted at the first two performances. Modest felt he simply was not a very efficient conductor, and that the symphony, therefore, was not presented as attractively as it otherwise could have been.
The same features of the work's construction that make it a unified whole have suggested to many that the symphony is also following a "program," according to the English critic, Newman, a program that "embodies an emotional sequence of some kind," which he cannot identify, lacking a clue from the composer. The quality of the theme which begins the symphony, in the clarinets, and recurs in each movement, con?vinces him of this. It "is a peculiarly somber and fateful" theme.
It tinges the beauty of the second, slow movement. The almost false gaiety of the waltz in the third movement is interrupted by it. It makes the triumph of the last movement something less than that, for in that place it is also disturbing. The questions thus raised in the symphony seem to have to do with those of life and death, and they may not, possibly cannot, have been answered by Tchaikovsky or anybody else. But they do not fail to have touched us all the same.
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY INTERNATIONAL PRESENTATIONS
Marian Anderson, Contralto.....Wednesday, April 14
Tickets now on sale
?Paris Chamber Orchestra......Sunday, February 14
Adolf Scherbaum, Trumpet; and Michel Renard, Cello Paul Kuentz, Conductor
?Netherlands Chamber Choir.....Saturday, February 27
Detroit Symphony Orchestra . . . . (2:30) Sunday, February 28
Sixten Ehrling, Conductor
Program: Prelude and Quadruple Fugue .... Alan Hovhaness
Symphony No. 1 in E minor ...... Sibelius
Symphony No. 1 in F minor ..... Shostakovich
(Replacing Polish Mime Theatre in the Extra Series, originally scheduled for February 23)
Rosalyn Tureck, Pianist.......Monday, March 1
Program: All Bach--
Prelude and Fugue on the Name of BACH
Capriccio on a Departing Brother
Three Two-Part Inventions
?Chicago Little Symphony.......Sunday, March 7
Thor Johnson, Conductor
Sinfonia in B-flat major.........Bach
Divertissements, Op. 5..........Kxebe
Meditation and Processional for Viola and Orchestra . . . Bloch Concerto da camera for Flute, English Horn, and Strings . . Honegger The Lark Ascending--A Romance for
Violin and Orchestra......Vaughan Williams
Sinfonia Breve da Camera No. 1......Inghelbrecht
Robert Merrill, Baritone.......Friday, March 12
?Solisti di Zagreb.........Tuesday, March 30
National Ballet of Canada......Saturday, April 3
Tickets: $4.50--$4.00--$3.50--$3.00--$2.25--$1.50 Standing room only
Tn Rackham Auditorium CHAMBER MUSIC FESTIVAL
Budapest String Quartet . . February 17, 18, 19, 20, (2:30 p.m.) 21 Beethoven cycle (5 concerts)
Series tickets: $12.00--$9.00--$7.00 Single concerts: $3.50--S2.5O--$2.00
196S MAY FESTIVAL. Season tickets: $25.00--$20.00--$16.00--$12.00--$9.00
(Beginning March 1, any remaining tickets will be placed on sale for single concerts at
$5.00--$4.50--$4.00--$3.50--$3.00--$2.50 and $1.50
For tickets and information, address UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY, Burton Tower
University Musical Society