Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
THE UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
Lorin Maazel, Music Consultant
PHILIPPE ENTREMONT Conductor and Pianist
ANNE MARTINDALE WILLIAMS, Cellist
Thursday Evening, May 2, 1985, at 8:30 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Dedicated to the memory of Eugene Ormandy, 1899-1985 May Festival conductor 1937-1982 inclusive
Russian Easter Overture, Op. 36 ........................ Rimsky-Korsakov
Schelomo, Hebraic Rhapsody for Cello and Orchestra ................ Bloch
Anne Martindale Williams
Concerto No. 17 in G major for Piano and Orchestra, K. 453........ Mozart
Allegro Andante Allegretto
Rapsodie espagnole ............................................... Ravel
Prelude a la nuit Malaguena Habanera Feria
Mr. Entremont performs on a Bosendorfer piano provided by Kitnball International.
Sixty-sixth Concert of the 106th Season 92nd Annual May Festival
by Dr. Frederick Dorian in collaboration with Dr. Judith Meibach
Russian Easter Overture, Op. 36 ................ Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
In Soviet Russia, the religious impact of the Easter Festival has obviously lost much of its traditional exuberance, but in Czarist Russia, the observance of Holy Week included various features that were pagan in origin. Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov was inspired by this legendary and heathen side of Russian Easter. The transition from the tragic evening of Passion Saturday to the unbridled rejoicing on the morning of Easter Sunday gave rise to the composer's Russian Easter Overture.
In his autobiography, Rimsky-Korsakov explains that, in order to fully appreciate his overture, it was necessary to have attended the Russian Easter morning service at least once, in one of the ancient Greek Orthodox cathedrals thronged with people from every walk of life, with several priests conducting the service. He prefaced the orchestra score with two verses from Psalm 68, "Let God arise, let His enemies be scattered," etc., and by a reference to the sixteenth chapter of St. Mark: the empty tomb of Christ is discovered on the morning of the resurrection. To these quotations Rimsky-Korsakov added the following: "And the joyful tidings were spread abroad all over the world, and they who hated Him fled before Him, vanishing like smoke. 'Resurrexit!' sing the choirs of the angels in heaven, to the sound of the archangels' trumpets and the fluttering of the wings of the seraphim. 'Resurrexit!' sing the priests in the temples, in the midst of clouds of incense, by the light of innumerable candles, to the chiming of triumphant bells."
The score bears Rimsky-Korsakov's touching dedication of the Russian Easier Overture to the memory of his friends, Mussorgsky and Borodin. These two composers, along with Rimsky-Korsakov, Balakirev, and Cui, were members of a group that became known as "The Mighty Handful"; recently, historians have simply referred to them as "The Five." The informal establish?ment of this musical consort coincided in time with the growing international recognition of certain Russian writers, notably of Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, and Turgenev.
The musicians who were collectively named The Five committed themselves to strongly national tenets. They wrote their music in close collaboration and consultation with one another and frequently exchanged ideas, analyzed, argued, and criticized each other's compositional technique. Such a creative procedure, unusual as it was in the history of Russian music, was perhaps requisite for these artists for, with one exception, they set out as amateurs; music was not their first "official" profession. Rimky-Korsakov, the guiding spirit of The Five, began his career as an officer in the navy of Tsar Nicholas II; Alexander Borodin (1833-1887) was a respected professor of chemistry at the Academy of Medicine in St. Petersburg; Modest Mussorgsky (1839-1881) became a clerk in the Ministry of Communications; Cesar Cui (1835-1918) was appointed professor at the Engineering Academy. Only Mily Balakirev (1837-1910) decided early in life that music was to be his vocation. He began as pianist and composer and eventually founded a school of music.
The influence of The Five on the next two generations was profound, in Russia as well as abroad. In addition to his own lifework, Rimsky-Korsakov is remembered as the revered teacher of Stravinsky. Miaskovsky, Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Kabalevsky, and Khachaturian are likewise direct descendents of The Five in terms of their aesthetic guideposts. When Debussy served in Russia as music teacher for the children ofMmc Nadezhda von Meek (Tchaikovsky's patroness), the French composer became acquainted with the work of The Five; he was particularly attracted to Mussorgsky's music. Other names might well be added to demonstrate the considerable impact of The Five. As to Rimsky-Korsakov, he revised many scores written by the group and saw to it that they were performed and published.
Schelomo, Hebraic Rhapsody for Cello and Orchestra........... Ernest Bloch
Through their very titles, several scores by Ernest Bloch reveal their inspirational sources in terms of Jewish subject matter. Thus from 1912 to 1914 Bloch composed a setting of Psalms and, in 1913, Trois primes Juifi. Between 1930 and 1933, Bloch wrote his Sacred Service, based on a liturgical Hebrew text. This score is regarded by some authorities as the modern epitome of Jewish ritual music.
Bloch arrived at his individual style through a strong personal identification with the Hebrew world, but in the perusal of his lifework, other affinities must not be overlooked. The Swiss-born composer paid homage to his native country in his symphonic fresco Helvetia. He arrived in the United States in 1916 and became decisively associated with American music. America, his epic rhapsody in three parts, is an expression of his love for his adopted country. In 1920 Bloch was appointed director of the Cleveland Institute of Music. Five years later he became director of the San Francisco Conservatory. Subsequently a professor of composition at the University of California in Berkeley, he was the teacher of important American musicians, notably the late Roger Sessions.
Bloch composed Schelomo in Geneva during the first part of 1916, the year of his departure for the New World. The work, dedicated to Alexander and Catherine Barjansky, was first performed in New York on May 3, 1917 at a concert of the Society of the Friends of Music.
The score offers no literary clue apart from its title: Schelomo is the Hebrew name for Solomon. In this Hebrew Rhapsody, then, the composer refers to the biblical Solomon, the poet-king, who lived in the tenth century B.C. Solomon was the son of David and Bathshcba and he succeeded his father as ruler of the kingdom of Israel. Under Solomon's reign, Israel reached its highest glory -in contrast to the troubled times which preceded and followed Solomon's era. We learn that the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream and promised to grant him a wish. Solomon humbly asked for a discerning heart. He was rewarded with the most precious gift -that of wisdom. To this, the Lord added riches and military glory.
Schelomo evolves in one continuous movement. From the first bar, the solo cello assumes the lead. A lento moderato unfolds as an opening cadenza. The following piu animato introduces one of the principal melodies. Here, as everywhere, the cello evokes the personality of the poet-king: now with its freely streaming melos and lyricism, now with dramatic emphasis and passionate expression. Before long, the voice of the solo cello blends with the outburst of the multi-colored orchestra. But a chant of melancholia prevails as the solo wanders, in a rhapsodic manner, from one episode to the next.
Again the feeling is ambivalent, turning from lyrical repose to restlessness, which increases to a threatening tempest in the full orchestra. The music is driven into feverish curves, accentuated by the pulsations of the percussion. The storm subsides and the cello solo embarks on a long recitative, accompanied by high strings or by long-held notes in the winds. This gives way to another passionate speech of the orchestra, led by the violins in octaves. When the cello remains alone for another cadenza, the first portion of the rhapsody has come to a close.
The central section commences as an allegro moderate A dance is proposed with the motive first given out by the bassoon and later, "very rhythmically," by the oboe. The dance motive is seized and developed by the cello at considerable length. This phrase dovetails with the recapitulation of the rhapsody's chief motives.
Once more, the cello suggests the weighty pronouncements of Solomon, the prophet, the seer. The cello now conveys an almost vocal expression -a tone-speech, evoking the diction and accents of biblical prose. The rhapsody ends tranquilly with the subdued monologue of the cello.
Concerto No. 17 in G major, K. 453,
for Piano and Orchestra.....................Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
In 1781, when Mozart traveled from his native Salzburg to visit Vienna, he did not realize that the Austrian capital would remain his home for the rest of his life. Mozart became friendly with another Salzburg family -the Ployers -who had likewise moved cast. Babette Ployer, their talented daughter, studied the piano with Mozart. They played much music together, and Mozart composed two concertos for her. One of these is the Concerto in G major, K. 453, dated April 12, 1784, in Mozart's own catalog of his works.
Onjunc 10, 1784 the Ployers gave one of their regular musicales. In Mozart's words: "Fraulein Babette is playing her new Concerto in G, and I am performing the quintet. We are then playing together the Grand Sonata for Two Claviers." The friends who gathered for the evening at the Ployer's home in the suburb of Dobling must have been enchanted with the new music.
The Concerto in G is extremely playful and replete with highly original details. In the first measures, the theme appears unaccompanied. In the second measure, the lower strings and horns join; in the fourth, the winds take up counterpoint. Thus, the main melody is gradually accompanied in delicate and cheerful installments of tone colors. The subsidiary subject is based on a "sighing motive" sung by the first violins and tenderly continued by flute, oboe, and bassoon. With a run leading into the chief theme, performed legato, the piano solo enters. Soon the orchestra competes with the keyboard in a delightful conversational tone. The dominant key of D introduces a new theme on the part of the piano. The development displays numerous pianistic permutations of the tone material stated by the exposition. Lively passages, rapid broken chords, embellishments, and other characteristics of eighteenth-century keyboard style enrich the fabric. The reprise is free and leads to the traditional cadenza. Mozart himself provided two separate sets of cadenzas for the first two movements.
In the second movement, a deeply felt, expressive andante is intoned by the strings over a descending bass line. The statement comes to a standstill in the fifth measure. Silence functions throughout this movement with an eloquence that equals the music itself. Pauses occur on five different occasions (counting also the rest yielding to the cadenza). Each time the mood varies, and each time the music continues in an unexpected vein. This is a movement of passionate expression behind simple three-part writing. The modulations stride far away into the distant region of G-sharp. Various tunes, grace notes, and trills make this andante a subtle carrier of classical ornamentation.
Mozart's petty cash book lists a transaction directly related to the finale, recording a payment of thirty-four kreutzer for the theme of this allegretto. On May 27, 1784 he made the following entry into this book: "Vogcl Stahrl 34 kr. Das war schon!" And in notescript he recorded the starling's happy tune. Mozart bought the bird whose song so enchanted him. He became very attached to it, and when the starling died, Mozart gave him a grave with an inscription in his garden.
The finale of the concerto consists of five variations on the bird's song. The starling must have taken his tempo in a comfortable allegretto, which Mozart's variations retain. Technically, we refer to this type of variations as "doubles," i.e., the repeats arc cither varied or entirely contrasting. Mozart temporarily departs from the lightheartcd expression of this movement to writing of a serious and complex nature. This is demonstrated by the contrapuntal quality and intense imitation of certain sections. At its end, the allegretto is linked to a presto, which brilliantly concludes this extraordinary concerto immortalizing Mozart's little starling.
Rapsodie espagnolc........................................Maurice Ravel
Je Suis Basque -"I am Basque" was Ravel's favorite statement concerning his ethnological identity. The usually taciturn, extremely retiring composer stressed his spiritual solidarity with the pays basque that had been marked for centuries by its cultural isolation. It was in particular the Basque language that retained a curious independence from both the Spanish and French languages. Many inhabitants of the Basque provinces are bilingual, conversing in Basque and French, or Basque and Spanish, depending on their residences west or cast of the Franco-Spanish border near the Atlantic coast.
Today the visitor to the Basque land is likely to approach Ciboure, Ravel's birthplace, from the main road leading from Bordeaux to San Sebastian, one of the principal cities of the Spanish Basque province. Cibouri, as it is called in Basque, is a fastidiously maintained, quaint village on French territory. A bridge across the river Nivelle joins Ciboure with the resort town of St. Jean-de-Luz. In fifteen minutes one may drive to Biarritz, which was, during Ravel's time, a glamorous seaside resort known for its fine beaches, elegant hotels, and gambling casino. By contrast, Ciboure has remained to this day a sleepy residential suburb.
Throughout his life, Ravel keenly felt his ethnic roots. His mother came from an old Basque aristocratic family. The French-educated composer sublimated his Basque nostalgia in a series of works, emphasizing the Basque element in its close proximity to Spanish culture.
From a scholarly point of view, his compositional procedure raises more questions than it answers. The fact remains, however, that some of Ravel's most inspired music evokes the atmos?phere of Spain. To this Iberian group belong his humorous opera L'heure espagnole, the orchestral Pavane pour line infante definite, and Bolero.
The most "Spanish" of all Ravel's compositions is the Rapsodie espagnole, a cyclic composition of four movements completed in 1907. The first movement, "Prelude a la nuit," commences "very moderately," with a gentle tone line given out by the muted violins and violas. A cadenza for two clarinets is interspersed. A brief reprise of the initial pattern follows.
Without a break, the "Malaguciia" begins. According to Spanish tradition, it is performed by two dancers who never touch one another. The "Malaguena" opens in the low registers. Strings and trumpets blend in provocative triple rhythm. In slower time and free recitation, the English horn sounds a whimsical solo. The initial motives briefly return.
Next we listen to the "Habanera," originally a Cuban dance. Oboe and English horn take the lead, until attention shifts to the four times divided violins. The habanera theme returns and dies away.
The finale is the "Fcria," the festival of the people. It is ushered in by a leaping theme of the solo flute, "sufficiently fast," in swift 68 rhythm. Of the entire Rapsodie this farewell dance is the most fiery. It displays Ravel's impressionistic orchestra in a truly virtuosic manner.
The first performance of the Rapsodie espagnole took place in Paris on March 19, 1908; Edouard Colonne, founder of the Concerts Colonnc, conducted.
Reproduction of the program notes requires the permission of the author and of the Pittsburgh Symphony Society.
About the Artists
One of the foremost musicians of his native France, Philippe Entremont has won great acclaim for over two decades as concert pianist and, in the past sixteen years, as conductor. He belongs to the tradition of major artists who divide their activity between conducting and solo performance.
In the coming year, Mr. Entremont celebrates his fifth season as music director of the New Orleans Philharmonic and his ninth year as music director of the Vienna Chamber Orchestra. In addition, he will guest conduct and perform with the Denver Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Oakland Symphony, and in a number of key cities in North America. This month, following the May Festival, he takes the New Orleans Philharmonic on its first tour of South America, and next month he will lead the Vienna Chamber Orchestra on tour in Japan. Additionally, he has an extensive series of conducting and solo engagements in Europe.
Highlights of Mr. Entremont's current season with the New Orleans Philharmonic included a special gala opening concert featuring Leontyne Price, as well as a second East Coast tour which included a highly successful performance in New York's Carnegie Hall on March 21. He led the ensemble at the opening of the New Orleans World's Fair and in several subsequent performances throughout the Fair. Last summer Mr. Entremont led the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra for the first time, both as conductor and conductorpianist.
Since his widely acclaimed American debut in 1953 in Washington's National Gallery at age nineteen, and on the following day his New York debut, Philippe Entremont has performed as piano soloist with most of the major orchestras of the world. His tours have taken him to five continents as guest artist with symphony orchestras and in recital. He has conducted such orchestras as the Royal Philharmonic, Orchestre National de France, Oslo Philharmonic, Orchestre Lamourcux, Vienna Symphony Orchestra, Warsaw Philharmonic, Ensemble Orchestre de Paris, and the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Ficlds. In North America, he has guest conducted the symphonies of San Fran?cisco, Detroit, Houston, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Montreal, Quebec, and New York's Mostly Mozart orchestra.
In the recording field, he has made definitive recordings of the works of Stravinsky, Bernstein, Milhaud, and Jolivct. Among his latest discs arc recordings of works by Satic, Dohnanyi, Richard Strauss, Saint-Saens, and Litolff.
Born in Rhcims, France, in 1934, Mr. Entremont entered the Paris Conservatory at the age of twelve and studied under the guidance of Jean Doyen. That year he won the Harriet Cohen Piano Medal. At sixteen he made his professional debut in Barcelona, Spain, and in 1953 he became the first Laureate and Grand Prize winner of the Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud Competition.
Philippe Entremont is former President of the Ravel Academy in St. Jean-de-Luz and is a Knight of the Legion d'Honneur. He has been the recipient of many honors, including the Grand Prix du Disque, the Ncthcrland's Edison Award, New Orleans' International Order of Merit, and a Grammy nomination.
In Ann Arbor, Mr. Entremont makes his eighth appearance as piano soloist and his third as conductor.
Anne Martindale Williamsjoined the Pittsburgh Symphony as assistant principal cello in 1976 and within three years became the first woman in the orchestra's history to be named principal cello. She made her solo debut with the orchestra in May 1980 at Heinz Hall, performing Schumann's Cello Concerto in A minor. Since that time she has been a featured soloist in works by Tippctt, Previn, Strauss, and Haydn, both in Pittsburgh and on tour in Carnegie Hall and Avery Fisher Hall in New York City, at the Academy of Music of Philadelphia, and in Florida. She has appeared annually in chamber music recitals presented by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra with Andre Previn and Christoph Eschenbach, among others.
Her solo in "The Swan" on the Pittsburgh Symphony's recording of Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Sacns was described by Grammophon's critic as "the most memorable performance of all."
Ms. Williams divides her time between the orchestra, faculty duties at Carnegie-Mellon Univer?sity, and chamber music activities. On a nationally televised segment of "Previn and the Pittsburgh" shejoincd Yehudi Menuhin and Andre Previn in a performance of Beethoven's Trio in C minor. She is cellist of the Previn-Greenberg-Williams Trio, with Andre Previn and former Pittsburgh Sym?phony associate concertmastcr Herbert Greenberg. The trio has made several acclaimed recital appearances in Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Minneapolis, and other cities. Ms. Williams also has appeared as guest artist with local and metropolitan orchestras, including the Westmoreland and Johnstown symphonies. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music where she studied with Orlando Cole, she has played with the Pennsylvania Ballet Orchestra, the Philadelphia Opera Orchestra, and The Philadelphia Orchestra.
This evening's performance marks Anne Martindale Williams' solo debut in Ann Arbor.
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra becomes the fourth symphonic ensemble to take up residence in Ann Arbor's prestigious May Festival. It follows in the line of the Boston Festival Orchestra (1894-1904), the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (1905-1935), and The Philadelphia Orchestra (1936-1984), and we extend the same hospitality and welcome to each Pittsburgh musician in this 92nd annual festival as accorded their counterparts since 1894.
During the last decade, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has confirmed its standing among the world's greatest orchestras. It earned the highest critical acclaim at every stop during both its 1978 and 1982 European tours and on tour to the Hong Kong Arts Festival and the Casals Festival in Puerto Rico. The orchestra met with great success during its extensive domestic touring, un?derwritten from 1979 to 1983 by American Telephone and Telegraph as part of its "Bell System American Orchestras on Tour" program. The Pittsburgh Symphony was selected to participate in this prestigious Bell System project with six other major American orchestras -those of Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, New York, and Philadelphia. A further recognition came during the 1981-82 season when the British Council in London extended to the orchestra a S50,()00 grant to present a Festival of British music in Pittsburgh, New York, and Washington, D. C. This grant marked the first time that an American orchestra received funds from a foreign government.
This decade also saw the orchestra's expansion of its subscription series in its elegant Heinz Hall home to twenty-four weeks, a reentry into the recording world, and increased national attention through both the popular PBS television series "Previn and the Pittsburgh" and National Public Radio's broadcasts of the symphony's highly successful 1982-83 and 1983-84 concert series. Round?ing out its yearly schedule, the orchestra presents far-reaching educational and community pro?grams, a 'Pops' scries, an annual two-week Juncfest at Heinz Hall, and outdoor summer concerts in downtown Pittsburgh's Point State Park. Sponsored by the City of Pittsburgh, these "Symphony at the Point" concerts draw an estimated audience of 140,000 each year. Members of the Pittsburgh Symphony also comprise the orchestras for the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre and the Pittsburgh Opera.
Orchestral subscription concerts in Pittsburgh began rather tentatively in 1896, and, although the "Pittsburgh Orchestra" flourished around the turn of the century, in 1910 it faltered financially
and remained silent for sixteen years. Ten years later, Pittsburgh musicians banded together, pulled S2.000 from their own pockets, and worked through unpaid rehearsals, resulting in a rebirth of the orchestra in 1926 as the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
A host of famous conductors, music directors, and composers have spearheaded the orchestra's growth, among them Victor Herbert, Emil Paur, and Eugene Goossens. After a year's reorganiza?tion headed by Otto Klemperer in 1937-38, the orchestra selected as its first permanent conductor Fritz Reiner, who furnished the discipline and high standards necessary to a world-class orchestra. William Steinberg assumed the conductorship in 1952, instilling in his twenty-four-ycar tenure even greater standing, as a precedent for the level of excellence maintained from 1976 to 1984 by its most recent music director Andre Previn.
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra's appearances in Ann Arbor date back to 1899. Victor Herbert was the conductor for concerts in 1899, 1900, 1902, and 1904, and Emil Paur conducted in 1904. 1905, and 1906. Forty-four years elapsed before the orchestra's next appearance under guest conductor Paul Paray in 1950. William Steinberg was on the podium for concerts in 1959, I960, and 1963, and the orchestra's most recent visit was in 1981 under Andre Previn.
The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra will return to Ann Arbor again next spring for another residency in our 1986 May Festival. Guest conductors for the four concerts, April30dnnoogbMay3, will be the celebrated musicians Robert Shaw, Christoph Eschenbach andJcan-Punnrar Ranujwil. Other artists and complete program information will be announced in December.
Lorin Maazel, Music Consultant Michael Lankester, Associate Conductor
Andreas Delfs, Steinberg Fellow Marshall W. Turkin, Vice President and Managing Dmttsm
First I 'iolins Fritz Siegal
Concertmaster Victor Romanul
Assoc. Concertmasler Huci-Sheng Kao
Asa. Concertmaster Brian Reagin
Assl. Concertmaster Ozzie DePaul Richard DiAdamo Stuart Discount Donald Downs Samuel H. Elkind Wilbert Frisch David Gillis Edward F. Gugala Charles Hardwick Sara Gugala Hirtz Eugene Phillips Akiko Sakonju Roy Sonne Second Violins Teresa Harth Constance Silipignij: M. Kennedy Linge Leslie McKie JohnJ. Corda Stanley Dombrowski Emma Jo Hill Albert Hirtz Lois Hunter Stanley Klein Morris Neiberg PaulJ. Ross Peter Snitkovsky Stephen Starkman
Richard M. Holland
Lynne Ramsey Irvine
Samuel C. Kang
Anne Martindale Williams
Lauren Scott Mallory
Charlotta Klein Ross
Georgia Sagen Wochr
Robert H. Leiningerf
Rodney Van Sickle
Gretchen Van Hoesen
Ethan M. Stang
Thompson Bernard Cerilli E-Flat Clarinet Thomas Thompson Bass Clarinet Richard Page Bassoons
Leonard Sharrow Nancy Goeres Mark Pancerev Contrabassoon Carlton A. Jones Homs
Howard L. Hillyer Martin Smith Peter AltobelliJ Richard Happc Ronald Schneider Kenneth Strack
Trumpets Charles Hois Charles Lirette Jack G. McKie Roger C. Sherman
Rdbam D. Hmmnidk
Stanley S.. Lsomuroit" John Soroka Pmusotm John Soroka Gerald Ungei Don S. Lunzi Edwjrd I.
Patricia Prams Jennings' Personnel Xlmuger Aaron Chaifetz Asst. Personnel lmager Charles Hardwiik Production Xlamager Harold McDonald Librarian
Christian G. Woehr Assistant Librarian Joann McCollum Stage Technicians Thomas Gorman John Karapandi
Orchestra Photographer Ben Spiegel
Principal Co-Principal Associate Principal ?Assistant Principal
Angel and Philips Records
The Pittsburgh Symphony string section utilizes revolving seating on a systematic basis. Players listed alphabetically change seats periodically.
USAir is the official airline of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.
UNIVERSITY MUSICAL SOCIETY
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