Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
University Musical Society
Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra
Vassily Sinaisky, Music Director and Conductor Gil Shaham, Violinist
Friday Evening, March 18, 1994, at 8:00 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, Michigan
PROGRAM Overture to Russian and Ludmila...........Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka
Concerto for Violin in D Major, Op. 35 .......Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Finale: Allegro vivacissimo
Gil Shaham, violinist
The Rite of Spring.....................Igor Stravinsky
Part I: The Kiss of the Earth
The Augurs of Spring
Ritual of Abduction
Ritual of the Two Rival Tribes
Procession of the Oldest and Wisest One
The Kiss of the Earth
The Dancing Out of the Earth
Part II: The Exalted Sacrifice
Mystic Circle of the Young Girls
Tbe Naming and Honoring of the Chosen One
Evocation of the Ancestors
Ritual Action of the Ancestors
Exclusive Tour Management, ICM Artists, Ltd.
Large print programs are available upon request from an usher. Forty-seventh Concert of the 115th Season 115th Annual Choral Union Series
Overture to Russian and Ludmilla
Mikhail Ivanovich Glinka
Born June 31, 1804, in Novosspaskoye, Russia; died February 15, 1857, in Berlin.
In Glinka'a youth, Russian concert halls and opera theaters were dominated by Westerners, and there was almost no truly Russian music except that of the church and the peasants. As a young man, he studied the work of the best composers from Paris and Vienna that could be heard in Saint Petersburg, then took composition lessons in Italy and Germany, and upon his return home wrote A Life for the Czar, a successful opera on a Russian subject, in the Italian style.
His second opera, Russian and Ludmilla, is based on a Russian tale by the poet Alexander Pushkin, and it is infused with the style and spirit of folk song in a way that made it the first masterpiece in the great nineteenth-century flowering of Russian music. The plot revolves around a knight, Russian, and his gallant rescue of a nobleman's daughter, Ludmilla, who has been captured by an evil dwarf. The music was completed in 1841, after three years of work, and the first performance, in 1842, did not please the public, but eventually Russian and Ludmilla came to be recognized as the cornerstore of Russia's musical art.
The Overture to the opera is a brilliant little orchestral piece based principally on the music for the wedding of the title characters in the closing scene. It is scored for two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons and contrabasson, four horns, two trumpets, three trombones, timpani and strings.
Concerto for Violin in D Major, Op. 35
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Born May 7, 1840, in Votkinsk: died November 6, 1893, in Saint Petersburg.
When Tchaikovsky and a young Russian violinist first played through the Symphonie Espagnole for Violin and Orchesgra that Edouard Lalo had written for the Spanish violinist Pablo de Sarasate, the composer dropped all his other projects in order to write a violin concerto with a true Russian flavor. In the spring of 1878 he went off to Switzerland with his brother and a violinist-friend, and within a month the new work was done. He originally dedicated the score to the Czar's personal court violinist, Leopold Auer, who promptly declared it unplayable. Nevertheless, another violinst, Adolf Brodsky, began to study the work and persuaded Hans Richter to schedule it for performance with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra on December 4, 1881. According to Brodsky, there was only one rehearsal of the difficult, exotic music, and the orchestral parts were full of errors. Since many had not been corrected by concert time, the orchestra musicians played the entire accompaniment pianissimo, hoping not to be heard.
The premiere was a complete fiasco. At the end of the concerto, the hisses drowned out the applause. Eduard Hanslick, the famous conservative Viennese critic, wrote such a scathing review of the new composition that the words are said to have haunted Tchaikovsky, who knew them by heart, till his dying day. For a while, Hanslick wrote, "The Concerto is not without genius, but soon savagery gains the upper hand. The violin is no longer played, it is yanked about, torn asunder, beaten black and blue. The Adagio, with its tender melody, almost wins us, but it breaks off aburptly to make way for a finale that places us in the midst of a Russian carnival."
Justice came to Tchaikovsky later. Hanslick praised him warmly, and Auer, after making some changes in the solo part of the Concerto, played it frequently in concert and taught it to most of his illustrious pupils, who made it one of the most popular in the repertoire.
The Concerto's brilliant Allegro moderate first movement is followed by a lyrical Canzonetta, Andante, that is reminiscent of the Lalo Symphonie Espagnole. A brief cadenza leads into the Allegro vivacissimo, a dashing, dazzling rondo. The score calls for two flutes, two oboe, two clarinets, two bassoons, four horns, two trumpets, timpani and strings.
The Rite of Spring
Born June 17, 1882, in Oranienbaum: died April 6, 1971, in New York.
The Rite of Spring is Stravinsky's masterpiece, at once an evolutionary, revolutionary and seminal work. Its strong roots in the past were at first obscured by its shocking novelty and they were later overlooked in the excitement about the new music that sprang from it. It now seems clear that it was conceived in the tradition of such Russian composers as Borodin and Stravinsky's teacher, Rimsky Korsakov, that it was an extension of the new musical freedoms and liberties that Stravinsky had exercised in his two preceding major works, The Firebird and Petrushka, and that it immediately became a model for such other composers as Prokofiev and Bartok.
Fifty years after its first performance, composers in Europe and the Americas still went to this score for ideas on form, instrumental writing and especially rhythm. In 1965, when Stravinsky revisited the house in Switzerland where he had worked on this music fifty-four years earlier, his ancient landlady recalled the neighbors complaints that "Monsieur Stravinsky played only wrong notes." Stravinsky, not amused, replied, "The wrong notes for them, but the right ones for me."
In his memoirs, Stravinsky told that he had the idea for the ballet that became The Rite of Spring in 1910, before Petrushka. "I saw in imagination," he wrote, "a solemn pagan rite: wise elders, seated in a circle, watching a young girl dance herself to death. They were sacrificing her to propitiate the god of spring." He developed the scenario in collaboration with his friend, Nicolas Roerich, an artist and designer who had an archeologist's knowledge of ancient slavic life.
The impresario Serge Diaghilev agreed that his Ballets Russes company would produce The Rite of Spring. The costumes and stage sets were designed by Roerich, but Diaghilev had the unfortunate idea of entrusting the choreography to Vaslav Nijinsky, his leading male dancer, for whom the subject and style were too remote, even foreign, and who had the additional handicap, Stravinsky later wrote, of being "ignorant of the most elementary ideas about music."
The first performance was given in Paris on May 29, 1913, a date of great importance in the history of music, with Pierre Monteux conducting the orchestra. The dancers had had 120 rehearsals an enormous number and a dress rehearsal had gone well, but the first-night audience rioted at the savage music and the grotesque dancing. Until the very end of his life Stravnisky resented their reaction to that first performance. As soon as the curtain went up, the audience began to laugh and to shout in protest. As Stravinsky's supporters called for silence, the outcries grew louder. Fists were shaken and blows struck. "It was war over art for the rest of the evening," the American critic Carl van Vechten reported, "and the orchestra played on unheard . . . The figures on the stage danced in time to music that they had to imagine they heard, beautifully out of rhythm with the uproar in the auditorium."
There have been many different productions of the ballet since that time, but the music has always proved too strong for the dance and has overpowered the choreography and the stage effects. In 1914, in Moscow, Serge Koussevitzky gave the first concert performance of the score, and during the next fifty years it slowly established its place in the concert repertory wherever orchestras and audiences could cope with its unprecedented difficulties. Now it is a popular repertoire piece. It is no less difficult to play, but its musical language is no longer strange to us.
The work is divided into two parts, which are subtitled The Kiss of the Earth and The Exalted Sacrifice. They are separated in concert by a brief pause. The sections of Part One are Introduction, Augurs of Spring, Ritual of Abduction, Spring Rounds, Ritual of the Two Rival Tribes, Procession of the Oldest and Wisest One, The Kiss of the Earth, and The Dancing Out of the Earth.
Part Two, The Exalted Sacrifice, opens with an Introduction that Stravinsky intended to represent 'pagan night' and continues with the Mystical Circle of the YoungGirls, The Naming and Honoring of the Chosen, Evocation of the Ancestors, Ritual Action of the Ancestors, and finally the Sacrificial Dance.
The work is scored for a gigantic orchestra: two piccolos, two flutes, alto flute, four oboes, two English horns, three clarinets, one E-flat clarinet, two bass clarinets, four bassoons, two contrabassons, eight horns, two Wagner tubas, five trumpets, bass trumpet, three trombones, two tubas, five timpani, bass drum, cymbals, antique cymbals, tambourine, triangle, tam-tam, grater and strings.
About The Artists
Newly appointed as Music Director of the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra, the charis?matic Russian conductor Vassily Sinaisky was bom in Leningrad in 1947. After graduating from the Leningrad Conservatory, where he studied conducting under the legendary Ilya Muslin, he became Kiril Kondrashin's assistant at the Moscow Philharmonic (1972-74). In 1973 Mr. Sinaisky was awarded the Gold Medal at the Herbert von Karajan Competition in Berlin, the only Soviet conductor to be so honored. As a result, he was increasingly en?gaged as guest conductor in the West and Japan and was appointed Chief Conductor of the Latvian Symphony Orchestra in Riga. While in Riga (1975-1987) he also devoted time to the Opera, leading two notable new productions of Boris Gudunov (orch. Shostakovich) and Tchaikovsky's Queen of Spades.
Mr. Sinaisky is frequent guest conductor with the Hungarian State Symphony Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic, the RAI Turin Orchestra and Orchestra of the Teatro della Fenice. In addition, he has given many concerts with the St. Petersburg (formerly Leningrad) Philharmonic and the St. Petersburg Symphony. He made a stunning American debut with the San Diego Symphony in February 1989 and was immediately re-engaged for its "Teasures of the Soviet Union Festival" the following November.
Other recent highlights of Sinaisky's career have been his United Kingdom debut with the English Chamber Orchestra in a 150th-anniversary Tchaikovsky concert at the Barbican; concerts with the Detroit and Atlanta symphony orchestras, the Netherlands Philharmonic and the Monte Carlo Opera Orchestra; and a tour of France with the USSR State Symphony.
With the Moscow Philharmonic, he toured Spain, Portugal and the U.K. in August 1992 and taped their first recording in the West, an album of Russian masterpieces for Virgin Classics.
Formerly associated with the Bolshoi Theatre and the Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra, Maestro Sinaisky became Principal Guest Conductor of the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, a post newly created for him, with the start of the 1992-93 season.
Tonight's concert marks Maestro Sinaisky's UMS debut.
At age 22, violinist Gil Shaham is already internationally recognized by noted critics and leaders of the world's most celebrated sym?phonic ensembles as a veteran virtuoso of the instrument. Since his 1981 debut with the Jerusalem Symphony conducted by the late Alexander Schneider, he has been acclaimed consistently for his performances with the New York Philharmonic, the Boston Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orches?tra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the San Francisco, Montreal and Detroit symphonies. Abroad, his achievements are equally outstand?ing, covering concerts with the Berlin Philhar?monic, l'Orchestre de Paris, the Hamburg Philharmonic, the Israel Philharmonic, the Ba?varian Radio Orchestra, Japan's NHK Sym?phony, the Royal Philharmonic, the Philharmonia Orchestra and the London Sym?phony, with which, under the baton of Michael Tilson Thomas, he made two dramatic, highly
praised appearances in 1989 as substitute, on a day's notice, for an ailing Itzhak Perlman.
Mr. Shaham's current schedule remains distinguished and wide-ranging. During the 1993-94 season, he appears with numerous North American orchestras, including those of Baltimore, Colorado, Detroit, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Montreal, San Antonio and Washington, D.C. (the National Symphony). With the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra he will be performing and recording Vivaldi's Four Seasons in anticipation of a tour with that ensemble during the 1994-95 season. He is also a featured soloist on this Moscow Philharmonic United States tour.
An exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist, Gil Shaham has recorded concertos by Mendelssohn, Bruch, Paganini and Saint-Saens with Giuseppe Sinopoli leading the Philharmonia Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic; Wieniawski's Concertos Nos. 1 &. 2 and Sarasate's Zigeunerweisen with Lawrence Foster and the London Symphony; and solo discs devoted to music by Schumann, Richard Strauss, Elgar, Ravel, Franck, Kreisler, Paganini, Saint-Saens and Sarasate. The summer of 1993 saw the release of another collaboration with Maestro Sinopoli and London's Philharmonia, featuring the Tchaikovsky and Sibelius Concertos.
Television audiences have seen him on ABC's Good Morning America and PBS's Nova, where he was featured in the documentary "Child's Play: Prodigies and Possibilities." Peter Jennings of ABC News named him "Person of the Week" following the aforementioned 1989 London event, which made global headlines.
Gil Shaham was born in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, in 1971. In 1973 he moved with his parents to Israel where at the age of 7 he began violin studies with Samuel Bernstein of the Rubin Academy of Music and was immediately granted annual scholarships by the American-Israel Cultural Foundation. In 1980, while studying with Haim Taub in Jerusalem, he made debuts with the Jerusalem Symphony and the Israel Philharmonic. That same year he began his studies with Dorothy DeLay and Jens Ellerman at Aspen. In 1982, after taking first prize in Israel's Claremont Competition, he became a scholarship student at Juilliard, where he has worked with Ms. DeLay and Hyo Kang.
Mr. Shaham was awarded the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant in 1990. He is a graduate of the Horace Mann School in New York City and has also attended Columbia University. He plays a 1699 Stradivarius named after Countess Polignac, who was reputedly the French mistress of Benjamin Franklin while he was America's first ambassador to France.
Tonight's performance marks Mr. Shaham's UMS debut.
The Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra, regarded as one of the world's finest symphonic ensembles, was founded in 1951 by Samuel Samosud, a distinguished conductor of the Bolshoi Opera. Originally part of the All-Union Radio Committee, the orchestra was established primarily for the broadcasting of operatic music and was given its current title in 1953. Under the direction of its founder Mr. Samosud, the Moscow Philharmonic performed the works of many new Soviet composers and also gave concert performances of operas seldom heard by Soviet audiences.
In 1958 Kiril Kondrashin, beginning a long-lasting relationship with the Orchestra, conducted the ensemble during the first International Tchaikovsky Competition and in 1960 was named Music Director, a post he held until 1975. Under Kondrashin's direction, the Moscow Philharmonic toured extensively, participating in numerous festivals of modern music throughout the Soviet Union and in many of the world's important music centers. In 1963 the Orchestra toured Hungary, Yugoslavia, England and France and in 1965 made a highly successful seven-week tour of the United States (including an Ann Arbor appearance with cellist Mstislav Rostropovich.) The orchestra returned to the United States in 1970, 1979, 1990 and 1992.
In 1976 Dmitri Kitaenko was named Music Director of the Moscow Philharmonic. He infused the orchestra's musicians with a new creative force, and, under his direction, they gave the first performances in the Soviet Union of Mahler's Symphony No. 8, Messiaen's Turangalila Symphonie, Puccini's Messa di Gloria and many other works. Maestro Kitaenko resigned his post in 1990. In 1991, Vassily Sinaisky was named as his successor.
Among the many distinguished guest conductors of the Moscow Philharmoinic have been such musicians as Igor Stravinsky, Zubin Mehta and Igor Markevich. The orchestra is involved in a wide range of creative endeavors that comprises a full artistic program.
The ensemble's repertoire encompasses the complete works of Russian classical composers and of the contemporary Soviet School, as well as the music of Mahler, the Second Viennese School and such American composers as Copland, Bernstein and Gershwin. In addition, the orchestra performs numerous works of the Soviet and Western avant-garde.
The Moscow Philharmonic has made over 100 recordings, many of which have been honored with some of music's most coveted prizes. It has also participated regularly in the most prestigious music festivals of Europe and has performed in over 4000 concerts.
Tonight marks the fifth UMS performance by the Moscow Philharmonic.
Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra
Grigorii Krasko, Concertmaster
Second Violins Mikhail Chemiakhovsky Mark Dvoskin Evsei Bemadsky Anatolii Fedorenko Konstantin Bcnderov Evgenia Zimakova Vladimir Brodsky Yurii Sheikhet Vladimir Spektur Leonid Gorbachev Vsevolod Vasiliev Oleg Artemenko Svetlana Kaplan Vasilii Grechishnikov Ateksandr Shteiman
Lev Kaplan' Nikolai Kondrashin Aleksandr Khersonskii Vladimir Zimakov Aleksandr Konsistorum Natalia Ivanova Dmitrii Potiomkin Maya Kuznetsova Igor Smirnov Natalia Panasiuk Leonid Muravin Yulii Sychev-Zborovskii Svetlana Kondrashina
Aleksandr Zagorinsky' Anatolii Lukianenko Leonid Goldberg Aleksandr Kovalev
Tatiana Ustinova Aleksandr Kasianov Boris Khusid Tatiana Grokhotova Olga Grafskaya Nikolai Dobychin Olga Mozhar Mikhail Yakovlev
Doublebasses Vasilii Zatsepin' Igor Gaidai
Alexei Khodorchenkov Yurii Ter-Mikhailov Vladimir Kuznetsov Aleksandr Agadjanov Rinald Vasilevsky Roman Krakovsky Robert Devoyan Viacheslav Kuznetsov
Sergei Smirnov" Elizaveta Zueva Aleksandr Saveliev
Sergei Grishin Stanislav Kochnev
Albert Gofman Sergei Turmilov Vladimir Maidanovich Vladimir Pakulichev Ekaterina Gofman
Nikolai Mozgovenko" Igor Panasiuk Sergei Vedenin Aleksandr Krakovsky Vladimir Simkin
Aleksandr Klechevsky Viacheslav Sazykin Igor Ladygin Viktor Egorov Emanuil Chudner
Leonid Melnikov Boris Afanasiev Aleksei Boiko Boris Boldyrev Vladimir Pavliuk Andrei Romanov
Leonid Speransky Igor Lifanovsky
Trumpets Mikhail Khanin' Yurii Krivosheev Aleksei Parshenkov Konstantin Moskvin Mikhail Naydin
Trombones Aleksei Sholomko Yurii Dobrogorsky Mikhail Deriugin Oleg Eremeev
Tubas Yurii Larin Yurii Afonin
Ltudmila Vartanian Tatiana Ponomareva Svetlana Paramonova
PianoCelesta Vladimir Tchukhnov
Perrcussion Dmitrii Luldanov Valerii Barkov Ilia Spivak Pavel Kurkudenko Andrei Schtefutsa
AdministrativeTechnical Staff Aleksandr Plet2er, General Manager Anton Shershnev, Stage Manager Yurii Iliukhin, Librarian Larisa Zhuravliova, Wardrober Gurgen Amshanian, Technician Mikhail Petrovsky, Technician Eilina Tikhomirova, Gen. Director of Sovinart Dmitrii Fedoulov, Sovinart Rep.
CM Artists Touring Division Byron Gustafson,
Senior Vice President and Director Leonard Stein, General Manager Tanya Jastrebov, Assistant Manager Gerald Breault, Stage Manager
Prinicipal Reserve Member
The University Musical Society is pleased to welcome to this concert the fifth grade students at Thurston School and their teacher, Sue Sinta. These students, parents and teachers are here as a part of the Gigi Andresen Memorial Project. This project, honoring a friend to many in our community, is designed to prepare students for enjoying a world-class symphony orchestra concert while enabling them to attend this concert with a good understanding of what they will hear and the context in which the music was written.
Gigi Andresen, who for several years was employed by the Musical Society, had many associations with Thurston School. Gigi and Tim Andresen's daughter, Angela, was a student at Thurston and had many happy musical experiences while in attendance. Gigi was active in parent groups at the school and supported it through time given to many projects (including the lunchroom.)
It is our hope that meaningful music opportunities like this will continue for Thurston students in the future thanks to this program set up in Gigi's memory after she died in February 1992.
If you would like to be a part ot funding this program, please contact the UMS Development Office (313) 764-8489.
Supported by the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs ig