Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
Los Angeles Philharmonic
CARLO MARIA GIULINI Music Director and Conductor
Tuesday Evening, December 7, 1982, at 8:30 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Symphony No. 4 in C minor ("Tragic"), D. 417
Adagio molto, allegro vivace Andante
Menuetto: allegro vivace Allegro
Symphony No. 9 in D minor .............
Feierlich, misterioso (solemn, mysterious) Scherzo: bewegt, lebhaft (agitated, lively) Adagio: langsam, feierlich (slow, solemn)
Deutsche Crammoplwn, CBS Mastcrworks, and London Records.
This concert by the Los Angeles Philharmonic has been underwritten, in part, by Michigan Bell in association with the Bell System as part of its "American Orchestras on Tour" program.
Twentieth Concert of the 104th Season 104th Annual Choral Union Series
PROGRAM NOTES by Orrin Howard
Symphony No. 4 in C minor, D. 417 .......................Franz Schubert
It would have been difficult if not impossible for a Viennese composer growing up in the first two decades of the 19th century to have avoided going through a Beethoven period. As a teenager, however, as he went about developing his own singular musical voice in hundreds of compositions, Schubert at one-point in time must have thought himself the heir-apparent to the mighty Beethoven. That point was in 1816, when at nineteen and apparently under the Ludwig spell, he wrote his Fourth Symphony, later subtitling it Tragic. The work, if somewhat self-consciously dramatic, is still distinctive and compelling in its own right and stands high in the affections of any Schubertphile.
In spite of its Beethoven mannerisms of rhythm and accent and of orchestral dynamism, and even though its key is C minor, one of Beethoven's favorites for fist-clenched urgency, the Symphony is less tragic than merely emotional and thus largely begs the issue of its subtitle. The drama opens with a probing Adagio introduction that leads to the movement proper, an Allegro vivace having as its main idea a taut theme that seethes quietly for ten measures before releasing its full energy. In the course of the movement, Schubert avoids the Classical conventions of key relationships by setting the secondary theme in A-flat and the recapitulation in G minor. The movement ends with shining C major fanfares, which, however, are only superficially jubilant, and fail to bring a Beethovenian spirit of triumph-after-struggle for which the young composer apparently was striving.
The Andante second movement is the Schubertian heart of the Symphony, its song-like main theme (so prophetic of the A-flat Impromptu for Piano, Op. 142, No. 2, composed in 1827) set into bold contrast by a memorable, dramatic, minor-keyed episode. Conversely, the Minuet is about as unSchubcrtian a section as one can imagine, with bold syncopations and a surprising melodic chromaticism as its striking elements. The last movement is perhaps the most remarkable music of the Symphony, partly for its own vivid imagery and partly for its anticipation of the kind of serious, minor-keyed vigor set into motion some years later by Mendelssohn. It is hardly the ending for a truly tragic symphony; but, after all, what's in a name
Symphony No. 9 in D minor.............................Anton Bruckner
Like Schubert, Mozart, and Beethoven, Bruckner found the lure of Vienna too great to resist, and moved there from the provincial town of Linz in 1868. At 44, he was long past his formative years; still, the years of his greatest productivity were ahead of him. He devoted himself almost exclusively to the writing of symphonies, composing eight of his nine massive works in the form there. That he persevered in this compositional direction is a testament to the strength of character and unswerving faith in God which were intrinsic to his Catholic peasant nature, for his music encountered the kind of opposition that might have destroyed a man with less spiritual fortitude.
Symphony No. 9 in D minor is the formal title of the work by Beethoven most often referred to simply as the Choral Symphony. That Bruckner chose to set his ninth symphony in D minor can be looked upon as symbolic of his reverence for the final symphony of Beethoven. He was indeed tremendously impressed and influenced by the mighty work, by its mysterious opening (all of Bruckner's first movements begin in an atmosphere of quiet, expectant awe), by the character and scope of its movements and, in his eighth and ninth symphonies, by the sequence of its movements. The placement of the Scherzo as the second movement and the Adagio as the third is of particular value in the present work, for since Bruckner never wrote a fourth movement for it, the Symphony is infinitely more impressive ending as it does with the exalted beauty of the Adagio than it would be concluding with dieScheTZO. Bruckner worked on his Ninth Symphony from 1887 through 1894. During the two subsequent years until his death in 1896, he made some sketches for a finale, one that almost certainly would have capped the Symphony with the kind of dynamic expansiveness that characterizes the closing movements of his other symphonies.
The mysticism of Bruckner's religiosity is immediately apparent in the opening of the Ninth Sym?phony. As strings maintain a quiet tremolo on the keynote, D, for the first 18 measures, eight unison horns softly announce the main theme, a severe and solemn idea that at last expands intervalically and harmoni?cally. The aura of expectancy is heightened by the following agitated but still quiet motif in the violins, which is answered by the winds. This material reaches an anxious and broad climax, during which a powerful idea, containing Bruckner's favorite triplet rhythm, is declared by the full orchestra in unison. After a pause, an eerie passage of pizzicato strings under quiet, alternately ascending and descending cries throughout the winds, leads to the warm, lyrical second theme. This is given by first violins, as second violins weave a counter melody. Other ideas are introduced, the most important one being a kind of martial theme (with a Brahmsian flavor), given by the strings. The remainder of the movement builds repeatedly to granitic climaxes which are followed by mystical, sometimes chorale-like passages. The final full-orchestra measures bring the movement to a demonic close, with trumpets blazing dissonantly on a three-note descending figure taken from the main theme.
The Scherzo movement, with its repeated note idee fixe is, for Bruckner, a daring piece of music, filled with dissonances, an aura of grotesqueric, and a steely rhythmic thrust prophetic of such 20th century composers as Bartok and Prokofiev. A brief contrast to this tautness comes with a sprightly oboe melody, and an extended departure from it in a quicksilver, almost Mendelssohnian trio.
The eloquent expressiveness of the lengthy Adagio is represented in the opening notes of unaccom?panied violins. A warm, rapturously beautiful melody in strings brings solace to music that moves from resignation to fierce anger and back again. At about the half-way point, a shattering climax grows out of a presentation of the warm melody, this time given in extended note values. To end his unfinished Sym?phony, Bruckner introduces quotations from his two preceding symphonies, closing the work in touching, sighing serenity.
About the Artists
The 64-year history of the Los Angeles Philharmonic extends from its founding in 1919 to the preeminent position it now occupies among international symphonic organizations. As Los Angeles' major musical institution, the Philharmonic is known throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia by way of annual tours, recordings, and radio and television broadcasts. At home, it performs a 24-week winter subscription season and an 11-week summer season at Hollywood Bowl. Additionally, it presents a wide range of musical events both in Los Angeles and various Southern California communities: chamber music -the Los Angeles Philharmonic Chamber Music Society; contemporary music -the Philharmonic New Music Group; recitals and concerts by visiting ensembles -Celebrity Series at the Music Center, Virtuoso Series at Hollywood Bowl; young people's programs in schools and at Hollywood Bowl; Jazz at the Bowl; and most recently, opera -in April 1982, eight sold-out performances of Verdi's Falstaff in a co-production with London's Royal Opera House and the Teatro Comunale, Florence, under Maestro Giulini's direction.
Walter Henry Rothwell was the first conductor to lead the Philharmonic and remained as music director until his death in 1927. Six renowned conductors headed the Orchestra until 1978: Georg Schneevoigt, Artur Rodzinski, Otto Klemperer, Alfred Wallenstein, Eduard von Beinum, and Zubin Mehta. After the 16 enormously progressive years of the Philharmonic-Mehta collaboration (1962-1978), the distinguished Italian conductor, Giulini, assumed for the first time the music directorship of an American orchestra. Since 1978 Mr. Giulini has taken the Orchestra on six tours, the most recent a highly successful tour of Japan and Korea in May 1982. This season includes the current tour of the Eastern and Midwestern United States, and a return visit to Europe in MayJune 1983.
The Philharmonic's recordings with Maestro Giulini have met with distinct success throughout the world. Since 1978 eight recordings have been released, with three more albums (including Verdi's Falstaff, recorded live) due for release this year, all on the Deutsche Grammophon label. For the past four seasons, all of the Orchestra's subscription concerts have been broadcast on the more than 200 member stations of the National Public Radio system, and in the spring of 1983 a second series of four television programs entitled "The Giulini Concerts" will be seen nationwide on the PBS Network. Two months ago Mr. Giulini and the Philharmonic, with violinist Itzhak Perlman, performed a concert for live broadcast by the European Broadcasting Union, the prestigious association that services 31 countries in Europe as well as 47 countries throughout the world. The Los Angeles Philharmonic is one of only three American orchestras (with the Boston and Chicago Symphonies) ever to have been selected for EBU's International Concert Seasons, which began in 1967 and presents six concerts yearly.
Carlo Maria Giulini was born in Barletta in Southern Italy in 1914. At age 16 he entered the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome where he studied viola and composition and later, in 1938, enrolled in the conductors course at the Accademia. The outbreak of World War II caused the cancellation of Mr. Giulini's first conducting engagement with the famous Augusteo Orchestra, and it was not until 1944 that the aspiring conductor was chosen to lead that orchestra in its first concert celebrating the liberation of Rome. In the years to follow, Mr. Giulini formed close relationships with Arturo Toscanini and Victor de Sabata. In 1951 he succeeded the latter as principal conductor of Milan's historic opera house, La Scala, where his fame grew rapidly and his productions with director Luchino Visconti and soprano Maria Callas are now considered legendary. He made his American debut in 1955 as guest conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, where he was appointed principal guest conductor in 1969. For three years he was also chief conductor of the Vienna Sym?phony. In Europe, Maestro Giulini had a long and distinguished association with the Philharmonia Orchestra of London, and has frequently appeared with all the leading orchestras in Europe and the United States, among them the New York and Berlin Philharmonics, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Boston Symphony, and Philadelphia Orchestra.
Mr. Giulini is the recipient of many honors: honorary membership in Vienna's Gesellschaft der Musik freunde in 1978, joining such illustrious historical figures as Beethoven, Brahms, and Bruno Walter; Gold Medals of both the Bruckner Society and International Gustav Mahler Society in 1978; an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from De Paul University in Chicago; and on September 1,1982, he was awarded the prestigious "Una vita nella musica" (A Life in music) prize in Venice, Italy.
This evening marks the Los Angeles Philharmonic's fourth concert in Ann Arbor (1970,1975, and 1980); Mr. Giulini made his first appearance with the Orchestra in 1980, returning now for the second time.
A Season to Celebrate!
Gift certificates available for all concerts
Pittsburgh Ballet, Tchaikovsky's "Nutcracker"...........Fri.-Sun. Dec. 17-19
Guarneri String Quartet .....................................Sun. Jan. 9
Tamburitzans Folk Ensemble ..................................Sat. Jan. 15
Santiago Rodriguez, Pianist .................................Thurs. Jan. 27
Marcel Marceau, Mitnist ..........................Sat. & Sun. Jan. 29 & 30
HAkan HagegArd, Baritone.....................................Wed. Feb. 9
Songs of Mozart, Busoni, Schubert, Berg, Wolf, and Scandinavian composers
Guarneri String Quartet ....................................Sun. Feb. 13
Pilobolus Dance Theatre .........................Tues. & Wed. Mar. 1 & 2
Belgian Chamber Orchestra and
Miha Pogacnik. Violinist......................................Fri. Mar. 4
Hindemith: Five Pieces; Bach: Violin Concerto in D minor; Haydn: Violin Concerto in C major; Dvorak: Serenade for Strings
Dresden StaatskapelleHerbert Blomstedt.....................Sun. Mar. 6
Zimmerman: Sinfonia; Strauss: Death and Transfiguration; Beethoven: Symphony No. 7
Ballet Folclorico Nacional de Mexico.......................Tues. Mar. 8
Ali Akbar Khan, Sarod.....................................Thurs. Mar. 10
I Solisti Aquilani and
Gary Karr, Double Bassist....................................Sat. Mar. 12
Music of Corelli, Pergolesi, Rolla, Dragonetti, Zafred, and Bucchi
Faculty Artists Concert (free admission)......................Sun. Mar. 13
Boston Symphony OrchestraSeiji Ozawa.....................Wed. Mar. 16
Beethoven: Symphony No. 1; Stravinsky: "Firebird" (complete)
New Irish Chamber Orchestra and
James Galway, FlutistDirector .................................Fri. Mar. 18
Telcmann: Suite in A minor; Quantz; Flute Concerto in G major; Duff: Irish Suite for Strings; Vivaldi: Concern, Op. 10, Nos. 1, 2, & 3
Murray Perahia, Pianist ....................................Thurs. Mar. 24
Mozart: Fantasy in D minor, Rondo in D major; Mendelssohn: Variations serieuses; Beethoven: Sonata, Op. 10, No. 3; Liszt: Sonata in B minor
Michael Lorimer, Guitarist ....................................Sat. Mar. 26
World premiere of a new work by Leslie Bassctt
Fitzwilliam String Quartet ....................................Fri. Apr. 8
Tchaikovsky: Quartet in B-flat major; Shostakovich: Quartet No. 11; Delius: "Swallows'; Beethoven: Grossc Fuge, Op. 133
Chicago Symphony OrchestraGeorg Solti..................Thurs. Apr. 14
Mozart: Magic Flute Overture; Bartok: Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celeste; Dvorak: Symphony No. 9 ("New World")
Joffrey II Dancers ..............................Tues. & Wed. Apr. 19 & 20
90th Annual May Festival............................Wed.-Sat. Apr. 27-30
The Philadelphia Orchestra and Riccardo Muti; Theo Alcantara, guest conductor; soloists, programs, and ticket information to be announced next week.
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Burton Memorial Tower, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109 Phones: (313) 665-3717764-2538