Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
Baritone JON SPONG, Pianist
Friday Evening, March 29, 1985, at 8:30 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
I cieli immensi .................................................Marcello
II mio bel foco -quella fiamma ..................................Marcello
Rivolgete a lui lo sguardo, K. 584.................................. Mozart
Vier ernste Gesange, Op. 121 ...................................... Brahms
Dcnn es gehet dem Menschen Ich wandte mich O Tod, wie bitter bist du Wcnn ich mit Menschen
Duna (Margorie Fickthall)................................Josephine McGill
The World Feels Dusty (Emily Dickinson)
.................. Aaron Copland
At the River (hymn tune)
Please help maintain silence during the concert; Halls Cough Tablets, courtesy of Warner-Lambert Company, are available in the lobbies.
Sixty-third Concert of the 106th Season 106th Annual Choral Union Series
Little Irish Girl (Edward Teschcmachcr) ............. Hermann Frederic Lohr
To Music (adapted from William Billings) ......................AliceJordan
(World premiere performance by Sherrill Milnes this season; commissioned by the Dcs Moines Civic Music Association in celebration of its 60th anniversary season.)
Four Songs................................................ Santoliquido
Quando lc domandai
Io mi levai dal rcntro della Terra
Qui done commande, from Henry VIII..........................Saint-Saens
Avant de quitter ces lieux, from Faust .............................. Gounod
RCA, Angel, Columbia, DGG, London, Phillips, New World, and MMG Records.
I cieli immensi ..................................... Benedetto Marcello
(1686-1739) The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament shewcth His handiwork.
II mio bel foco -quclla fiamma ..................................Marcello
My ardent longing, whether near thee I tarry or wander, constant to thee is burning; and for thy glorious eyes am I ever yearning.
I am happy to adore thee, in my heart the flame to cherish; thou doth never cease to glow.
And should fate to thee restore me, with thine eyes of light supernal brighter than the sun eternal, other light I need not know.
Rivolgete a lui lo sguardo, K. 584............... Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Mozart's original intention was to include this big aria in Cosifan tutle, but at the premiere of the opera he replaced it with a shorter one, which is still most often used today. Alfred Einstein called "Rivolgete" the most remarkable buffa aria ever written, and it stands as one of Mozart's major concert arias.
In Cosi, two officers, Ferrando and Guglielmo, are betrothed to two sisters, Fiordiligi and Dorabclla. Accepting the wager offered by Don Alfonso, an old philosopher who challenges their faith in the fidelity of their lady-friends, the officers declare to the sisters that they are being called to war and have to leave immediately. Shortly thereafter they return in foreign disguise and try their utmost to win the girls. In this aria, Guglielmo uses exaggerated gestures and words to do his best, both for himself and his friend: "My sighs are of fire, my desires as strong as bronze. In wcalt'i, we are like Croesus; in beauty, like Narcissus; in love, even Marc Antony would seem ridiculous compared to us. We are stronger than a Cyclops. If we dance, a Pick would give up. Splendid; they resist us firmly; they arc leaving and I am glad of it. Models of loyalty, they are paragons of faithfulness."
But the triumph was premature -soon his friend's fiancee, Dorabella, falls in his arms . . Cosifan tutte . . . women are like that!
Vier ernste Gesange (Four Serious Songs), Op. 121.......... Johannes Brahms
Denn esgehet dem Menschen -One thing befalleth the beasts and the sons of men; the beast must die, the man dieth also, yea, both must die; to beast and man one breath is given, and the man is not above the beast; for all things are but vanity. They go all to one place, for they all are of the dust, and to the dust they return. Therefore I perceive there is no better thing than for a man to rejoice in his own works; for that is his position. For who shall show him what will happen after him
Ich wandte mich -So I returned and did consider all the oppressions done beneath the sun. And there was weeping and wailing from those that were oppressed, and had no comfort, for with their oppressors there was power, so that no one came to comfort them. Then I did praise the dead which are already dead, yea, more than the living which linger still in life; yea, he that is not is better than dead of living; for he doth not know of evil that is wrought forever on earth.
O Tod, wie bitter bist du -O death, how bitter art thou unto him that dwclleth in peace, to him that hath joy in his possessions, and livcth free from trouble, to him whose ways are prosperous in all things, to him that still may cat! O death, how welcome thy call to him that is in want and whose strength doth fail him, and whose life is but a pain, who hath no thing to hope for, and can not look for relief! How welcome is thy call.
Wetm ich mil Menschen --Though I speak with the tongues of men, and of the angels, and have not love, then am I become as a sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I can prophesy, and understand all mysteries, and am powerful in knowledge, and though I have the gift of faith and can move mountains, and have not love, yet am 1 nothing worth. And though I give my worldly goods to feed the poor, and though 1 give my body to be burned, and have not love, it profiteth me nothing. For now we see the word darkly as through a glass, but then we shall see it face to face. Here I know but partly, but there I surely shall know it, even as I am also so known. Now abidcth faith, hope, love; but the greatest of these is love.
Four Songs..................................... Francesco Santoliquido
Le dotnandai (Abu-Said) -I asked her, "To whom do you wish to tie your destiny, you beautiful creature She responded, "To myself, because I am unique; I am the lover and the beloved; because I am the mirror, the beauty and the vision."
Quatido le domatidai (Ncgi de Kamare) -When I asked the reason for our distance, she responded, "I will tell you I am your eyes, I am your soul. Why does it surprise you that you do not see me Tell me, is one ever able to see the soul Tell me."
Io mi levai dal centro delta Terra (Omar Khayam) -I am lifted from the center of the earth, across the seventh door, and present myself at the throne of Saturn. I answer many enigmas on thejourncy, but not the enigma of human death nor that of destiny.
RiJIessi (Santoliquido) -Oh, beautiful reflections of the sun, of yellow and gold that illuminate the garden like immense fireworks that flood me also with your warm phosphores?cence of gold. I forget in you the wonders of stars, speech, fireflies, pearls, rubies and emeralds. My tired eyes are blinded by your light, my soul drinks and is intoxicated by light and color. Oh, beautiful reflections of the sun, red flashes of burning flame, shine! I need you! Flood the brook, the garden, and the leaves in a shower of gold!
-Translation by NSM
Qui done commande, from Henry VIII..................Camille Saint-Saens
It has been confirmed that Pope Clement VII is opposed to Henry VIII's demand for a divorce from Catherine of Aragon in order to marry Anne Boleyn. In the aria here, Henry laments this and confesses he no longer reigns over his own heart. It is his new love for Anne that dictates his actions in a way that he has never before known. This lack of control over his own emotions leaves him frustrated and somewhat angry.
Avant de quitter ces lieux, from Faust ......................Charles Gounod
With a sacred medallion in hand, given to him by his sister Marguerite, Valentin prays to God to protect his sister while he is away fighting for his country.
About the Artists
Sherrill Milnes is now at the height of an extraordinary career that has taken him from the plains of the American Midwest to the great opera houses and concert stages of the world. Acknowl?edged internationally as perhaps the foremost operatic baritone of today, Milnes has sung virtually all of the major roles for his voice. At the Metropolitan Opera he has been honored with three opening nights, seven national telecasts, and no less than fourteen new productions.
There has always been a special emphasis in the Milnes career on the works of Giuseppe Verdi. From the pivotal baritone parts of Trovatore, Laforza del dcstiiw, and Otello to the monumental title parts of Rigolctte, Simon Boccanegra, Macbeth, and Nabucco, he has sung them all to worldwide critical and audience acclaim. Among the nearly seventy roles Milnes has undertaken, he has also demon?strated a mastery of the other great baritone roles and many of the more obscure roles as well. His Scarpia in Puccini's Tosca has been received with enthusiasm both in the United States and Europe, where his portrayal was filmed by Unitel and telecast nationally in this country over PBS stations.
Milnes has appeared in seven "Live from the Met" telecasts: Olello, Luisa Miller, Don Carlo, 1 Pagiiacci, Eritani, Simon Boccanegra, and a joint concert with Placido Domingo. The most recorded American opera star ever, Milnes has made over sixty recordings with many solo and duet albums. His latest recording is Thomas' Hamlet with Joan Sutherland, on the London label.
While Milnes is an American-trained artist, he has been in constant demand in Europe's great opera houses: London's Covcnt Garden, Hamburg, Paris, Vienna, Munich, Berlin, LaScala, and the Tcatro Colon in Buenos Aires. In the United States, in addition to the Metropolitan, he has sung with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the San Francisco Opera, and with the opera companies of Pittsburgh, Houston, Cincinnati, Miami, Seattle, San Diego, and the New York City Opera. He is also the host of "A New World of Music," a syndicated radio program devoted to the diverse heritage of American music as recorded on New World Records.
Highlights of the baritone's current season include lago in Otello, as well as a new production of Simon Boccanegra at the Metropolitan, Ernani with the San Francisco Opera, operatic appearances in Vienna and Berlin, and numerous recitals across the country.
Jon Spong, pianist for Sherrill Milnes since 1964, is a private vocal coach in New York City. His multifaceted career includes numerous appearances as an organ recitalist and active involvement as a published composer, arranger, and editor of organ music. He also teaches at the New School for the Arts in Montclair, New Jersey.
Both Mr. Milnes and Mr. Spong have received the Alumni Distinguished Service Award and Centennial Award from their alma mater, Drake University. The two men have given numerous public performances together, including two programs at the White House, and they have appeared as a team on national television in "Love, Sidney" with Tony Randall. In addition, they have recorded together on RCA and New World Records.
In Ann Arbor, Mr. Milnes and Mr. Spong make their second appearance together, while Mr. Milnes has previously made four operatic appearances and three May Festival appearances as well.
Ann Arbor May Festival
Wednesday-Saturday, May 1, 2, 3, 4
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra The Festival Chorus, Donald Bryant, Director
Guest Conductors Sixten Ehrling Philippe Entremont Sir Alexander Gibson
Itzhak Perlman, Violinist Philippe Entremont, Pianist
Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Soprano Henry Herford, Baritone Anne Martindale Williams, Cellist
Ann Arbor Summer Festival 1985
June 29 -July 23 inclusive Write for new brochure with complete information.
New 1985-86 Concert Season
Choral Union, Chamber Arts, Choice, and
Debut & Encore Scries, plus special concerts
To he announced April 22.
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
Burton Memorial Tower, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1270 Phones: (313) 665-3717, 764-2538