InSymphony November 2019

Page 1


the magazine of the

Oregon Symphony

Chick Corea FE ATURED CONCER T S Stephen Hough Plays Mendelssohn | Nov. 2–4 Chick Corea | Nov. 7 Mahler’s Sixth | Nov. 16–18 Sibelius’ The Tempest | Nov. 23–25 Holiday Swing | Nov. 30–Dec. 1

Portland State University Announces the Opening of the Jordan Schnitzer museum of art at PSU November 2019

Art for All! Directly serving over 28,000 students, Portland State University’s first-ever art museum is free and open to the public, providing a cultural and intellectual hub that explores ideas relevant to our time through the lens of art. The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art at PSU joins the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art at the University of Oregon and the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art at Washington State University.

MAISON 30 3 2 N W Roosev el t

Portl a n d O re g o n

m a i s o n i n c . co m

5 0 3 . 2 95 . 0 1 5 1

The best of urban living right outside your door.

Located in the bustling South Waterfront district, Mirabella puts you steps away from a bountiful farmers market, lush green parks, and myriad restaurants and recreation opportunities. Plus, our gorgeous high-rise is filled with resort-style amenities for an unparalleled retirement lifestyle.

Call for a tour today. 503-245-4742

Mirabella Portland is a Pacific Retirement Services community and an equal housing opportunity.

The world is my reverie. The Symphony is my source. TI ME BR EAKER

G L E N D A GO L D WAT E R “John Cage couldn’t understand why people were scared of new ideas. He was scared of the old. Culture is just a part of me. Perpetual. Evolving is the only way to live.”







The 2019/20 Classical Series ignites now.

Experience the source. Buy tickets.





Gabriel Kahane

Stephen Hough Plays Mendelssohn




Chick Corea


Mahler’s Sixth




Sibelius’ The Tempest

Holiday Swing






Fascinating Boyz II MenFactoids: Jazz

Zach Galatis On a High Note: Emily Cole

Oregon Symphony programs are supported in part by the Oregon Arts Commission, the National Endowment for the Arts – a federal agency – and by the Regional Arts & Culture Council, which includes support from the Arts Education and Access Fund; Arts Investment Fund; the City of Portland; Multnomah, Clackamas, and Washington Counties; and Metro.

on the cover: Chick Corea



Tickets and Customer Service 909 sw Washington St. Portland, or 97205 Monday–Saturday, 10 am–6 pm 503-228-1353 or 1-800-228-7343 Monday–Friday, 10 am–9 pm Saturday, 10 am–6 pm

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Published by Rampant Creative, Inc. ©2019 Rampant Creative, Inc. All rights reserved. This magazine or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the expressed written permission of the publisher. Rampant Creative, Inc./Artslandia Magazine 6637 SE Milwaukie Ave., Suite 207 . Portland, OR 97202


LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT Dear Friends, With three Classical concerts and programs from our Specials, Kids, and Pops series, November’s schedule highlights the breadth of Oregon Symphony offerings, with selections ranging from dramatic and provocative to lighthearted and fun. We open the month with Stephen Hough Plays Mendelssohn (November 2–4), on a program that includes evocative work from Lili Boulanger and Schumann’s “Spring” Symphony. Next, we welcome jazz legend Chick Corea, who performs both Gershwin and an original concerto (November 7). On November 10, Pacific Youth Choir and Dance West join the orchestra for the enchanting Kids Series matinee Castles and Wizards. Then, Carlos Kalmar conducts Mahler’s thrilling Sixth Symphony, paired with Mozart’s lively Violin Concerto No. 3 (November 16–18). With Sibelius’ The Tempest (November 23–25), we launch our 2019/20 SoundSights series, a three-concert arc combining classical music with theater, animated cinematography, and puppetry. In this production, director Mary Birnbaum stages the Shakespearean play while the orchestra performs Sibelius’ score. Then, we conclude the month and launch the festive winter season with a colorful Pops performance, Holiday Swing (November 30–December 1).

The Oregon Symphony today is a symphony for all – embracing audiences far beyond the concert hall.” Throughout November, Oregon Symphony musicians present musicnow, music therapyinformed sessions of songs, movement, and joy at Lambert House Adult Day & Health Center. Our work in the community expands access to classical music and the hope and healing it may inspire. Donations fund 100% of our learning and community engagement efforts. We thank you for your support. We hope you enjoy your experience here with us today.

Scott Showalter president & ceo | 503-228-1353 11

DECEMBER CONCERTS The Tenors Christmas DECEMBER 2 Raúl Gómez, conductor

The three magnetic singers of The Tenors return to showcase the powerful crossover sound that has earned them international acclaim.

Kenny G – Celebrating 25 Years of Miracles: The Holiday Album DECEMBER 3 Take a joyous ride through the smooth sounds of jazz with the one-and-only Kenny G this holiday season. The Oregon Symphony does not perform

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis DECEMBER 6 Mannheim Steamroller’s distinctive blend of acoustic and synthesized sounds, along with dazzling multimedia effects, are a hallmark of the holiday season. The Oregon Symphony does not perform

Prokofiev’s Fifth DECEMBER 7–9 Christian Kluxen, conductor • Gabriel Kahane, vocals Beethoven: Overture to The Creatures of Prometheus • Gabriel Kahane: Pattern of the Rail: Six Orchestral Songs from Book of Travelers • Gabriel Kahane: Empire Liquor Mart Prokofiev: Symphony No. 5

Prokofiev’s richly melodic Fifth Symphony shimmers with the joy of one of the happiest times in his life.

Gospel Christmas DECEMBER 13–15 Charles Floyd, conductor Northwest Community Gospel Chorus

Clap your hands and stomp your feet along with the region’s premier gospel singers and the Oregon Symphony at this beloved annual concert.

The Storm Large Holiday Ordeal DECEMBER 16 Norman Huynh, conductor

Now in its 13th year and first time with the Oregon Symphony, Storm’s Ordeal will delight you and leave you begging for more of her wicked charm and stunning vocals.

Comfort & Joy: A Classical Christmas DECEMBER 18 Norman Huynh, conductor

Join the Oregon Symphony for an evening of good cheer with seasonal classics, a very merry sing-along, and a jubilant celebration sure to put you and yours in the holiday spirit.

Cirque Nutcracker DECEMBER 21 Norman Huynh, conductor

Troupe Vertigo bring their awe-inspiring hybrid of cirque, dance, and acrobatic art to Tchaikovsky’s beloved masterpiece.

A Viennese New Year with guests from Oregon Ballet Theatre DECEMBER 30 Carlos Kalmar, conductor

Come away to the glittering palaces of Austria as we celebrate the golden age of Viennese music with operatic melodies, Strauss waltzes, and dancers from Portland’s own Oregon Ballet Theatre.

Buy tickets to any of these concerts in the lobby of the Schnitz during intermission! 503-228-1353 your official source for symphony tickets

CONDUCTORS Carlos Kalmar Jean Vollum music director chair

Carlos Kalmar is in his 17th season as music director of the Oregon Symphony. He is also the artistic director and principal conductor of the Grant Park Music Festival in Chicago. In May 2011, he made his New York debut at Carnegie Hall with the Oregon Symphony as part of the inaugural Spring for Music festival. Both his imaginative program, Music for a Time of War, and the performance itself were hailed by critics in The New York Times, New Yorker magazine, and Musical America, and the concert was recorded and released on the Pentatone label, subsequently earning two Grammy nominations (Best Orchestral Performance and Best Engineered). Under Kalmar’s guidance the orchestra has recorded subsequent cds on the Pentatone label – This England, featuring works by Britten, Vaughan Williams, and Elgar; The Spirit of the American Range, with works by Copland, Piston, and Antheil, which received another Best Orchestral Performance Grammy nomination; Haydn Symphonies; and Aspects of America. New Yorker magazine critic Alex Ross called the Oregon Symphony’s Carnegie Hall performance under Kalmar “the highlight of the festival and one of the most gripping events of the current season.” That verdict was echoed by Sedgwick Clark, writing for Musical America, who described the performance of Vaughan Williams’ Fourth Symphony as “positively searing… with fearless edge-of-seat tempos… breathtakingly negotiated by all…” A regular guest conductor with major orchestras in America, Europe, and Asia, Kalmar recently made his subscription series debuts with three of America’s most prestigious orchestras: those of Boston, Chicago, and San Francisco. Past engagements have seen him on the podium with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Minnesota Orchestra, and the New World Symphony, as well as the orchestras of Baltimore, Cincinnati, Dallas, Houston, Milwaukee, Nashville, Seattle, and St. Louis. Kalmar, born in Uruguay to Austrian parents, showed an early interest in music and began violin studies at the age of six. By the time he was 15, his musical promise was such that his family moved back to Austria in order for him to study conducting with Karl Osterreicher at the Vienna Academy of Music. He has previously served as the chief conductor and artistic director of the Spanish Radio/Television Orchestra and Choir in Madrid as well as the music director for the Hamburg Symphony, the Stuttgart Philharmonic, Vienna’s Tonnkunsterorchester, and the Anhaltisches Theater in Dessau, Germany. He lives in Portland with his wife, Raffaela, and sons, Luca and Claudio.

Norman Huynh Harold and Arlene Schnitzer associate conductor chair

Norman Huynh has established himself as a conductor with an ability to captivate an audience through a multitude of musical genres. This season, Huynh continues to showcase his versatility in concerts featuring Itzhak Perlman, hip hop artists Nas and Wyclef Jean, and vocal superstar Storm Large. Born in 1988, Huynh is a first generation Asian American and the first in his family to pursue classical music as a career. Upcoming and recent engagements include the St. Louis Symphony, Detroit Symphony, and Grant Park Music Festival. He has served as a cover conductor for the New York Philharmonic and Los Angeles Philharmonic with John Williams. Huynh has been at the forefront of moving orchestral music out of the traditional concert hall. In 2011, he co-founded the Occasional Symphony in Baltimore to celebrate holidays by performing innovative concerts in distinct venues throughout the inner-city. The orchestra performed on Dr. Seuss’ birthday at Port Discovery Children’s Museum, Halloween in a burnt church turned concert venue, and Cinco de Mayo in the basement bar of a Mexican restaurant. Huynh currently resides in Portland and enjoys skiing, board games, and riding his motorcycle. You can follow him on Instagram @normanconductor. Jeff Tyzik principal pops conductor

Jeff Tyzik has earned a reputation as one of America’s foremost pops conductors and is recognized for his brilliant arrangements, original programming, and rapport with audiences. Now in his 26th season as principal pops conductor of the Rochester Philharmonic, Tyzik is also in his 13th season as the Oregon Symphony’s principal pops conductor and continues to serve in the same role with the Seattle Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Florida Orchestra, and Canada’s Vancouver Symphony. Tyzik is also highly sought after as a guest conductor across North America. He holds Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the Eastman School of Music. He lives in Rochester, New York, with his wife, Jill. | 503-228-1353 13

O R C H E S T R A , S TA F F & B O A R D Orchestra MU S I C D IR E C TO R



Carlos Kalmar Jean Vollum music director chair

Nancy Ives, Mr. & Mrs. Edmund Hayes, Jr. principal cello chair Marilyn de Oliveira, assistant principal Seth Biagini Kenneth Finch Trevor Fitzpatrick Antoinette Gan Kevin Kunkel

John Cox, principal Joseph Berger, associate principal Graham Kingsbury, assistant principal Matthew Berliner* Mary Grant** Alicia Michele Waite

A S S O CIATE COND U C TO R Norman Huynh Harold and Arlene Schnitzer associate conductor chair PR IN CIPAL P O P S COND U C TO R Jeff Tyzik VI O LIN

BASS Colin Corner, principal Braizahn Jones, assistant principal Nina DeCesare Donald Hermanns Jeffrey Johnson Jason Schooler

Sarah Kwak, Janet & Richard Geary concertmaster chair Peter Frajola, Del M. Smith & Maria Stanley Smith associate concertmaster chair FLU TE Erin Furbee, Harold & Jane Pollin Martha Long, Bruce & Judy Thesenga assistant concertmaster chair principal flute chair Chien Tan, Truman Collins, Sr. principal Alicia DiDonato Paulsen, second violin chair Inés Voglar Belgique, assistant principal assistant principal Zachariah Galatis second violin Fumino Ando PI CCO LO Keiko Araki Zachariah Galatis Clarisse Atcherson Ron Blessinger OBOE Lisbeth Carreno Martin Hébert, Harold J. Schnitzer Ruby Chen principal oboe chair Emily Cole Karen Wagner, assistant principal Julie Coleman Kyle Mustain** Eileen Deiss Jason Sudduth* Jonathan Dubay Gregory Ewer ENGLI S H H O RN Daniel Ge Feng Kyle Mustain** Lynne Finch Jason Sudduth* Shin-young Kwon Ryan Lee CL AR INE T Yuqi Li James Shields, principal Samuel Park Todd Kuhns, assistant principal Searmi Park Mark Dubac Vali Phillips Shanshan Zeng B A S S CL AR INE T VIOLA Todd Kuhns Joël Belgique, Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund principal viola chair Charles Noble, assistant principal Jennifer Arnold** Kenji Bunch* Silu Fei Leah Ilem Ningning Jin Brian Quincey Viorel Russo Martha Warrington


B A S S O ON Carin Miller Packwood, principal Evan Kuhlmann, assistant principal** Nicole Haywood, assistant principal* Adam Trussell ** Steve Vacchi*

TR UMPE T Jeffrey Work, principal David Bamonte, assistant principal, Musicians of the Oregon Symphony Richard Thornburg trumpet chair Doug Reneau TR OMB ONE Casey Jones, principal Robert Taylor, assistant principal Charles Reneau B A S S TR OMB ONE Charles Reneau TUBA JáTtik Clark, principal TIMPANI Jonathan Greeney, principal Sergio Carreno, assistant principal PE R CU S S I ON Niel DePonte, principal Michael Roberts, assistant principal Sergio Carreno HAR P Jennifer Craig, principal LIB R ARY Joy Fabos, principal Kathryn Thompson, associate Sara Pyne, assistant O R CHE S TR A PE R S ONNE L MANAGE R Leah Ilem AR TI S T- IN - R E S ID EN CE Johannes Moser Artist-in-Residence program is sponsored by Drs. Cliff and Karen Deveney

CR E ATIVE CHAIR Gabriel Kahane

CONTR AB A S S O ON Evan Kuhlmann** Steve Vacchi*

* Acting position ** Leave of absence

Administration Ethan J H Evans, patron MAR KE TING , Scott Showalter, president and ceo COMMUNI C ATI ONS & S ALE S services representative Diane M. Bush, executive assistant Ethan Allred, marketing and Rebecca Van Halder, Susan Franklin, assistant to the web content manager lead patron service, teleservices music director Danielle Jagelski, patron Ellen Bussing, vice president Liz Brown, marketing partnership and group sales manager services representative for development Katherine Eulensen, audience Emily Johnstone, lead patron Charles Calmer, vice president development manager services, ticket office for artistic planning Chris Kim, patron services Janet Plummer, chief financial John Kroninger, front of house manager Lisa McGowen, marketing representative and operations officer operations manager Nils Knudsen, ticket office manager Steve Wenig, vice president John Zinn, director of marketing Christy McGrew, director of and general manager and sales patron services B U S INE S S O PE R ATI ONS Jen McIntosh, patron O PE R ATI ONS Allison Bagnell, art director services representative Jacob Blaser, director of operations David Fuller, tessitura applications Elliot Menard, patron Ryan Brothers, assistant stage manager administrator services representative Monica Hayes, Hank Swigert director, Tom Fuller, database administrator Carol Minchin, patron learning and community Julie Haberman, finance and services representative engagement programs administration associate Amanda Preston, patron Susan Nielsen, project manager, Randy Maurer, creative services services representative Gospel Christmas and publications manager Tyler Trepanier, patron Darcie Kozlowski, director of Peter Rockwell, graphic designer services representative popular programming Robert Trujillo, patron services D E VE LO PMENT Steve Stratman, orchestra manager representative Meagan Bataran, annual fund director Lori Trephibio, stage manager Hilary Blakemore, senior director Jacob Wade, manager, operations and S ALEM of development artistic administration Laura AgĂźero, director of Kerry Kavalo, annual giving manager Oregon Symphony TI CKE T O FFI CE Ella Rathman, development associate in Salem programs Leslie Simmons, director of events Adam Cifarelli, teleservices manager L. Beth Yockey Jones, operations Courtney Trezise, foundation Karin Cravotta, patron services manager and corporate giving officer representative

Board of Directors O FFI CE R S


Robert Harrison, chair Dan Drinkward, vice chair Tige Harris, vice chair & treasurer Rick Hinkes, vice chair Nancy Hales, secretary

Courtney Angeli Rich Baek Janet Blount Christopher M. Brooks Eve Callahan Cliff Deveney Lauren D. Fox Robyn Gastineau Jeff Heatherington J. Clayton Hering Sue Horn-Caskey Judy Hummelt Braizahn Jones

LIFE TIME D IR E C TO R S William B. Early RenĂŠe Holzman Gerald R. Hulsman Walter E. Weyler Jack Wilborn

Grady Jurrens Gerri Karetsky Kristen Kern Thomas M. Lauderdale Martha Long Priscilla Wold Longfield Peggy Miller Roscoe C. Nelson III Dan Rasay Lane Shetterly, ex-officio Scott Showalter, ex-officio James Shields Amanda Tucker Chabre Vickers Derald Walker | 503-228-1353 15



Ever since the spring of 2018, when singer/songwriter/ composer Gabriel Kahane premiered his groundbreaking oratorio emergency shelter intake form with the Oregon Symphony to packed houses and wildly enthusiastic audiences, Kahane and the Symphony have been thinking about ways to further their creative relationship. In August, the Symphony announced Kahane’s appointment to a brand new position as the Symphony’s creative chair, a three-year collaborative partnership in which Kahane will be developing two new concert series for the Symphony’s lineup. Kahane will also compose three significant new works for the Symphony to premiere over the next three seasons. 16

“Coming out of emergency shelter, I felt a really warm connection with the orchestra and staff,” says Kahane about the origins of this new partnership. “I thought, ‘Here was an organization that was really putting action to words.’ I had coffee with [President and ceo] Scott Showalter, and I said, ‘It would be great to deepen this relationship in some way,’ and he said, ‘We were thinking the same thing.’ It was like a first date that went well.” After that initial discussion, Kahane met with Charles Calmer, the orchestra’s vice president for artistic planning, to brainstorm further and hammer out details. “As a freelancer, I have to be very proactive. I can’t assume people think I want to do things, so I have to tell them what I’d like to do,” says Kahane.

At this point in his career (Kahane is 38), he’s beginning to think about the importance of working in a curatorial role, as he also continues exploring his own musical projects. “Making room for other voices is important,” Kahane declares.

In my conversations with my colleagues at the Symphony, my appeal to them is that I have my ear to the ground in the new music and pop music worlds. Both of those genres relate to broadening the way popular music programming works.” In the Open Music Series, which will begin in March 2020, Kahane says he wants to “demystify what being a composer is for the audience.” Guest composers will join Kahane onstage at the Alberta Rose Theatre and other venues to examine their creative approach and “semi-curate their own concert.” Kahane will be on stage as moderator, friend, conversationalist, and occasionally a cameo performer; a small ensemble from the Oregon Symphony will serve as house band. For the inaugural Open Music concert, Kahane has invited composer Caroline Shaw, whose Pulitzer Prize-winning Partita for 8 Voices will be performed by the acclaimed vocal ensemble Roomful of Teeth on the Oregon Symphony’s March 14–16 concert Berio’s Sinfonia by Rose Bond. “I wanted Caroline to be my first guest because the way that she talks about her process and what excites her in music is deeply moving,” says Kahane. “She will dump her creative brain all over the stage. She is inspired by a wide variety of things, and she’s an enchanting, spritelike person who is all joy.” The other series Kahane is launching is so new it doesn’t yet have a name, but it will feature indie pop artists performing with the orchestra in newly created orchestrations of their music. “The basic idea is to have the orchestra be much more than decorative. For example, there’s so much great writing that uses

strings as a rhythm section, and there are plenty of opportunities to use the orchestra more dynamically.” Kahane notes the rise of a new generation of singer/songwriters who are more fluent with orchestral writing. “A huge space has opened up for ‘art’ pop music,” he says. “Take Radiohead: all of their arrangements are done by lead guitarist/keyboardist Jonny Greenwood, who studied music at a conservatory. Or Shara Nova, lead singer for My Brightest Diamond. She trained as an opera singer; now she fronts a rock band and writes her own orchestrations. More people who have studied classical music are moving into the pop realm as the boundaries between pop and classical blur and dissolve. It’s no longer extraordinary to have a band and write orchestral music. The fluidity of those aesthetic borders creates a demand that orchestras can fill. Some young people felt classical music institutions were too static, and they became disenchanted with the classical world. So they took their training in concert music outside the concert hall. Now the loop completes itself – people who started outside the concert hall are being invited back in.” Kahane’s appearance with the Symphony next month serves as a partial preview of this unnamed series. On December 7–9, Kahane will present the World premiere of Pattern of the Rail, six orchestral settings from his 2018 album Book of Travelers, which was inspired by a cross-country train trip through America following the contentious 2016 presidential election. Kahane will also premiere a new orchestral version of “Empire Liquor Mart (9127 S. Figueroa St.)” from his acclaimed 2014 album The Ambassador. “On March 16, 1991 – 13 days after the videotaped beating of Rodney King – a 15-year-old African American girl named Latasha Harlins walked into the Empire Liquor Market at 9127 South Figueroa St. in South Central Los Angeles. This is what I know of her story.” These brief remarks preface the starkly intense ten-minute song Kahane wrote about Harlins, who was shot and killed by the store’s co-owner, Soon Da Joon, who claimed Harlins stole a bottle of

orange juice. Witnesses in the market at the time of the shooting testified that Harlins had money in her hand (she was found clutching a handful of one-dollar bills and clearly intended to pay for the juice. Joon was found guilty of voluntary manslaughter. Her sentence included a $500 fine, 400 hours of community service, and five years probation, but no prison time. Public outcry about Joon’s sentence grew, and many people believe Harlins’ death and Joon’s sentence were major factors leading up to the 1992 Los Angeles riots, which began about six weeks after Harlins’ death. “[Latasha Harlins’ story is] central to the Afro-American conception of what led to the Rodney King riots,” says Kahane. “White America understood [the riots] to be a reaction to the Rodney King verdict, but tension between Korean and Afro-American communities had been simmering long before that.” “Empire Liquor Mart” marks a shift in Kahane’s approach to his own music. “My politics had always been a big part of who I was,” he explains. Before “Empire Liquor Mart,” Kahane’s political views, however, remained largely absent from his work. “Since ‘Empire Liquor Mart’, I’ve transitioned; now the politics are woven inextricably into the work, because of my gradual awakening to my own privilege and the injustices I always knew were there in issues of climate change, race, economics, digital access. Now I want to use my platform – whatever platform I have – to make people ask questions.”

This program tilts toward things that are emotionally intense. That being said, for me, there is a weird relationship in the way sad art can leave you feeling fulfilled and energized and more alive.” Gabriel Kahane performs with the Oregon Symphony on December 7, 8 & 9 on a program that also includes Prokofiev’s Fifth Symphony. Find tickets and more at | 503-228-1353 17

STEPHEN HOUGH PLAYS MENDELSSOHN SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 2019, 7:30 PM SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2019, 2 PM MONDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2019, 7:30 PM Clemens Schuldt, conductor Stephen Hough, piano Lili Boulanger

Of a Sad Evening

Lili Boulanger

Of a Spring Morning

Felix Mendelssohn

Piano Concerto No. 1 in G Minor Molto allegro con fuoco Andante Presto—Molto allegro e vivace Stephen Hough

INTERMISSION Robert Schumann

Symphony No. 1 in B-flat Major, “Spring” Andante un poco maestoso—Allegro molto vivace Larghetto Scherzo: Molto vivace—Molto più vivace—Tempo I Allegro animato e grazioso ARLENE SCHNITZER CONCERT HALL

CONCERT CONVERSATION Conducted one hour before each performance, the Concert Conversation will feature conductor Clemens Schuldt and host Robert McBride. You can also enjoy the Concert Conversation in the comfort of your own home. Visit to watch the video on demand.


Clemens Schuldt With this concert, Clemens Schuldt makes his debut with the Oregon Symphony. Schuldt is one of the most exciting young conductors emerging from Germany today and is the principal conductor of the Munich Chamber Orchestra. Schuldt is widely praised for his innovative interpretations of Classical and Romantic Germanic repertoire, often using his creativity to include lesser known and contemporary repertoire in his programs.


The 2019/20 Season sees Schuldt give his debut in London with the Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall with Augustin Hadelich, Orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin with Christian Tetzlaff, Bremer Philharmonic with Frank Peter Zimmermann, St. Gallen Symphony Orchestra with Kian Soltani, and the Tonkünstler Orchestra. Across the continents, he gives his debuts with the Oregon Symphony, Kyoto Symphony Orchestra, and the Xi’an Symphony Orchestra with Anne-Sophie Mutter.

Ancient history


STEPHEN HOUGH PLAYS MENDELSSOHN Much anticipated opera highlights include his debut at Venice Biennale conducting George Benjamin’s opera Written on Skin in September 2019, as well as his debut at Garsington Opera conducting Mozart’s early opera Mitridate in spring 2020. Last season, Schuldt conducted a new production of Così fan tutte with the Munich Chamber Orchestra to great critical acclaim. Clemens Schuldt won the prestigious Donatella Flick Conducting Competition in London in 2010 and was the assistant conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra for one year. Born in Bremen, he studied the violin in the Gürzenich Orchestra Cologne and the German Chamber Philharmonic Bremen, before taking up his conducting studies in Dusseldorf, Vienna, and Weimar.



Airs Wednesdays on KATU’s AM Northwest from 9–10 AM & Afternoon Live from 2–3 PM

Stephen Hough Stephen Hough last appeared with the Oregon Symphony on November 21, 2016, when he performed Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto No. 5 with conductor Ludovic Morlot.


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Combining a distinguished career as a pianist with those of composer and writer, Hough is regarded as a Renaissance man of his time. The first classical pianist to be awarded a MacArthur Fellowship and a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (cbe), his mastery of the instrument as well as an individual and inquisitive mind has earned him a multitude of prestigious awards and a longstanding international following. Since taking first prize at the 1983 Naumburg Competition in New York, Hough has performed with the world’s

S T E P H E N H O U G H P L AY S M E N D E L S S O H N major orchestras and given recitals at the most prestigious concert halls. His recent North American engagements include performances with the New York and Los Angeles philharmonics, the Cleveland and Minnesota orchestras, and the San Francisco, Montreal, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, and Detroit symphonies among many others; recitals in New York at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and the 92nd St. y; at the Kennedy Center; and in Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Toronto; and festival appearances at Aspen, Blossom, the Hollywood Bowl, Mostly Mozart, Ravinia, and Tanglewood. Internationally, he appears with orchestras and in recital in major music centers such as London, Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin, Milan, Zurich, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Beijing, Singapore, Shanghai, Sydney, and Melbourne. He has made more than 25 appearances at the bbc Proms, and in summer 2019, played Queen Victoria’s own piano in celebration of the 200th anniversary of her birth, performing Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. Highlights of Hough’s 2019/20 Season include re-engagements with the National, Dallas, Toronto, Oregon, Nashville, and North Carolina symphonies; tours to Australia, China, Korea, and Vietnam; recitals at Caramoor, the Van Cliburn Foundation, and Queen Elizabeth Hall at the Southbank in London; and a multi-concert series at London’s Wigmore Hall. Hough’s extensive discography of over 60 cds has garnered international awards including the Diapason d’Or de l’Année, several Grammy nominations, and eight Gramophone Awards including Record of the Year and the Gold Disc. Recent releases include solo piano works by Debussy; the Dream Album, a compilation of Hough’s favorite short works; and a live recording of Schumann and Dvořák’s piano concertos with Andris Nelsons and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, all for Hyperion Records. A recording of the five Beethoven concertos with the

Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Hannu Lintu conducting, also on the Hyperion label, will be released in May 2020. His award-winning iPad app The Liszt Sonata was released by Touch Press in 2013. As a composer, Hough has written for orchestra, choir, chamber ensemble, and solo piano. He has been commissioned by Wigmore Hall, Musée du Louvre, London’s National Gallery, Westminster Abbey, Westminster Cathedral, the Genesis Foundation, Gilmore International Keyboard Festival, Indianapolis Symphony, the Walter W. Naumburg Foundation, and the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet. His music is published by Josef Weinberger Ltd. A noted writer, Hough has written articles for The New York Times, The Guardian, The Times (uk), The Telegraph, Evening Standard, Gramophone, and bbc Magazine. A major anthology of essays by Hough on musical, cultural, lifestyle, and spiritual subjects – titled Rough Ideas: Reflections on Music and More – was published by Faber & Faber (uk) in 2019 and will be published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (us) in 2020. This follows his first novel, The Final Retreat, published by Sylph Editions in March 2018. Also an avid painter, Hough gave his first exhibition of nearly 20 abstract acrylic paintings in London in 2012. Hough is an honorary member of the Royal Philharmonic Society, a visiting professor at the Royal Academy of Music, holds the International Chair of Piano Studies at the Royal Northern College of Music, and is on the faculty of The Juilliard School in New York.

Program Notes LILI BOULANGER 1893–1918

Of a Sad Evening Of a Spring Morning composed: 1917–18 first oregon symphony performance instrumentation: piccolo, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, English horn, 2 clarinets, bass clarinet, 2 bassoons, sarrusophone (or contrabassoon), 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, bass drum, castanets, cymbals, tambourine, tam-tam, timbales, triangle, celeste, harp, and strings estimated duration: 16 minutes 11 minutes (Of a Sad Evening) 5 minutes (Of a Spring Morning) Women composers, like other female creative artists, have had to fight battles their male counterparts do not. Even today, a woman artist, writer, or composer often gets evaluated on criteria that have little or nothing to do with her work and everything to do with her gender, her appearance, or her life circumstances. Lili Boulanger was no exception. The younger sister of composer and pedagogue Nadia Boulanger, who taught composition to many of the 20th century’s most distinguished composers, Boulanger revealed her enormous talent at a very young age. A musical prodigy born into a musical family, she became the first woman to win the coveted Prix de Rome, France’s most prestigious composition prize, in 1913, at the age of 20. Boulanger’s compositional style, while grounded in the prevailing aesthetics associated with Debussy, is nonetheless wholly her own. Her music features rich harmonic colors, along with archaic modal tonalities, hollow chords (open fifths and octaves), ostinato figures, running arpeggios, and static rhythms. Along with her tremendous musical ability, Boulanger was born with a chronic, debilitating intestinal illness, | 503-228-1353 21

S T E P H E N H O U G H P L AY S M E N D E L S S O H N probably Crohn’s disease. Today there are drugs and other therapies to manage this condition, but in Boulanger’s time, the illness itself had neither name nor cure, and its treatment was likewise little understood. Throughout her short life, Boulanger suffered from chronic abdominal pain, bouts of uncontrollable diarrhea, and constant fatigue; all these symptoms naturally impacted her stamina and her ability to work. Contemporary reviews of Boulanger’s work always emphasized her physical fragility, often in lieu of a thoughtful assessment of her music. Despite her illness, Boulanger continued composing, even on her deathbed. Of a Sad Evening and Of a Spring Morning are two of the last works she wrote. The two works treat the same opening melodic and rhythmic theme in different ways: in Of a Sad Evening, the tempo is slow and the mood elegiac, while the same melodic/rhythmic fragment receives a cheerful, puckish treatment in Of a Spring Morning. Of a Sad Evening cannot escape being interpreted as Boulanger’s own musical obituary, and perhaps also an elegy for the soldiers lost in World War I, while Of a Spring Morning can be heard as a nostalgic reflection on happier days gone by.


Piano Concerto No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 25 composed: 1830–31 most recent oregon symphony performance: November 12, 1991; Norman Leyden, conductor; Bella Davidovich, piano instrumentation: solo piano, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, timpani, and strings estimated duration: 21 minutes


Felix Mendelssohn may not have been an iconoclast, like Ludwig van Beethoven, but he did stretch musical expectations on occasion, particularly in the opening moments of the G Minor Piano Concerto. The solo piano announces itself with an almost defiant aura (piano concertos of this period usually began with a long orchestral introduction before the soloist entered). The agitated Sturm und Drang (Storm and Stress) of G minor dominates the outer movements, while the rhapsodic central section features an intimate duet between piano and strings. In another break from convention, Mendelssohn links all three movements without pause, presenting the concerto as a unified whole. The last movement has a “look what I can do” quality, as the soloist executes dazzling runs of shimmering notes. The soloist’s virtuosity is on full display here, and the pianist hardly gets a moment’s rest as the music catapults forward to an exuberant conclusion. Mendelssohn performed the solo part at the concerto’s premiere in Munich on October 17, 1831. “My concert took place yesterday and was much more brilliant and successful than I had expected,” wrote Mendelssohn to his father the day after the premiere. “The affair went off well, and with much spirit … My concerto met with a long and vivid reception. The orchestra accompanied well and the work itself was really quite wild.” The G Minor Concerto became a standard of the repertoire of several virtuoso 19th-century pianists, including Clara Schumann and Franz Liszt. Opus 25’s popularity led to an “incident” described by Hector Berlioz in which an Erard piano, which had been used to perform the concerto 30 times in a row, became possessed by the music and could not stop playing it – sans pianist – until it was unceremoniously chopped up with an axe and burned. Berlioz ends his “anecdote” with a nod and a wink: “Such a fine instrument! We were heartbroken, but what could we do?”


Symphony No. 1 in B-flat Major, Op. 38, “Spring” composed: 1841 most recent oregon symphony performance: January 14, 2013; Christoph König, conductor instrumentation: 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, timpani, triangle, and strings estimated duration: 30 minutes “I wrote the symphony in that rush of spring which carries a man away even in his old age, and comes over him anew every year. Description and painting were not a part of my intention, but I believe that the time in which it came into existence may have influenced its shape and made it what it is.” – Robert Schumann Why would anyone compose a symphony with the subtitle “Spring” during the month of January? In the midst of the darkest, coldest time of year, thoughts of spring can ease the harshness of winter. As Robert Schumann sketched out his First Symphony during four hectic days in January 1841, his longing for spring in the midst of a bitter Leipzig winter inspired him. Spring and its associations of love, fertility, and new beginnings were foremost in Schumann’s thoughts; he was a newly married man, having wed Clara Wieck in the autumn of 1840. “After many sleepless nights comes prostration,” Schumann wrote in his diary after completing the orchestration for the “Spring” Symphony, in February 1841. “I feel like a young woman who has just given birth – so relieved and happy, but also sick and sore.” The reference to childbirth was not accidental; that winter, Clara was pregnant with their first child, Marie. Schumann tended to immerse himself in particular genres over specific periods of time. In 1841, he composed no less than four works for orchestra, and scholars have come to call 1841 his “symphonic year.”

STEPHEN HOUGH PLAYS MENDELSSOHN Before 1841, Schumann had been known for piano music, songs, and chamber works; some considered him more critic than composer, because of his writings in Die Neue Zeitschrift für Musik and the fact that he had not yet produced the pinnacle of compositional achievement, a symphony. In 1839, Clara wrote in her diary, “it would be best if he [Schumann] composed for orchestra; his imagination cannot find sufficient scope on the piano… His compositions are all orchestral in feeling… My highest wish is that he should compose for orchestra – that is his field!” Schumann’s musical ideas for the “Spring” Symphony came from a poem by Adolph Böttger, which begins with the lines “O wende, wende deinen Lauf/Im Thale blüht der Frühling auf!” (O turn, O turn and change your course/In the valley spring blooms forth!). The symphony opens with an instrumental setting of these two lines: the brasses, in Schumann’s description, “summon to life,” while the orchestra reveals a valley glowing with spring flowers. Schumann originally wrote a descriptive title for each movement, rather than a simple tempo marking. The Larghetto was originally called “Evening,” and its graceful, somewhat elegiac main theme, played first by the violins and later by a solo horn and oboe, are a tranquil backdrop against which the energy of the Scherzo (“Merry Playmates”) creates a marked contrast. The last movement, “Farewell to Spring,” begins with a grand orchestral flourish, followed by a dainty theme for strings, which Schumann cautioned should not be “played too frivolously.” Felix Mendelssohn conducted the premiere with the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra on March 31, 1841. “The performance of the symphony went magnificently,” writes Gewandhaus Orchestra historian Alfred Dörffel. “The listeners were extraordinarily excited… the success with all present was such that the symphony was much discussed and Schumann was viewed in a much different light and recognized to a greater degree than previously.”


The 2019 Calvin and Mayho Tanabe Address “Health Care Transformation and Its Ethical Challenges” PRESENTED BY

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For tickets and information:


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Steven Mercurio, conductor Chick Corea, piano Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Chick Corea

Overture to Don Giovanni Piano Concerto No. 1 (in 3 movements) Chick Corea

INTERMISSION George Gershwin

Selections for Solo Piano Chick Corea

George Gershwin

Rhapsody in Blue Chick Corea



Steven Mercurio With this concert, Steven Mercurio makes his debut with the Oregon Symphony. Mercurio is an internationally acclaimed conductor and composer whose musical versatility encompasses the symphonic and operatic worlds. He became the music director of the Czech National Symphony Orchestra in 2019. Mercurio is also a soughtafter collaborator for many awardwinning recordings, arrangements, and 24

film projects. Mercurio received his master’s degree from The Juilliard School and his bachelor’s degree from Boston University. For the stage, he has conducted more than 45 different operas in seven different languages. His engagements have taken him to many of the world’s best-loved opera houses including the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome, the Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels, English National Opera, and the American opera companies of San Francisco, Washington, Philadelphia, Seattle, Detroit, Dallas, and Cincinnati. In addition to Mercurio’s operatic repertoire, his symphonic appearances have included the London Philharmonia, London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony, and the Sacramento and San Diego symphony

orchestras in addition to his own Spoleto Festival Orchestra. Recent recordings by Mercurio include Il Trovatore, Pagliacci, and Cavalleria Rusticana for Decca Records and Manon Lescaut with the Teatro de la Maestranza, Seville. Mercurio’s relationship with sony Classical has led him to collaborate on a great number of recordings, most notably, Christmas in Vienna with the Three Tenors (Carreras, Domingo, and Pavarotti). As a composer, Mercurio’s compositions include songs, chamber works, and pieces for large orchestra. For Lost Loved Ones was given its World premiere by Zubin Mehta and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. His composition Mercurial Overture was given its World premiere by the Oslo Philharmonic in a concert telecast honoring the Nobel Peace Prize winners with Mercurio conducting.


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CHICK COREA shattering bands of Miles Davis in the late ’60s and early ’70s.

Chick Corea With this concert, Chick Corea makes his debut with the Oregon Symphony. Corea has attained iconic status in music. The keyboardist, composer, and bandleader is a DownBeat Hall of Famer and nea Jazz Master, as well as the fourth-most nominated artist in Grammy Awards history with 63 nods and 22 wins, in addition to a number of Latin Grammys. From straight-ahead to avant-garde, bebop to jazz-rock fusion, children’s songs to chamber and symphonic works, Corea has touched an astonishing number of musical bases in his career since playing with the genre-

Yet Corea has never been more productive than in the 21st century, whether playing acoustic piano or electric keyboards, leading multiple bands, performing solo, or collaborating with a who’s who of music. Underscoring this, he has been named “Artist of the Year” three times this decade in the DownBeat Readers Poll. Born in 1941 in Massachusetts, Corea remains a tireless creative spirit, continually reinventing himself through his art. As The New York Times has said, he is “a luminary, ebullient and eternally youthful.” Corea’s classic albums as a leader or co-leader include Now He Sings, Now He Sobs (with Miroslav Vitous and Roy Haynes), Piano Improvisations, Return to Forever (with Return to Forever: Joe Farrell, Stanley Clarke, Airto Moreira and Flora Purim), Romantic Warrior (with rtf’s quartet lineup: Stanley Clarke, Lenny White, and Al Di Meola), as well

as Crystal Silence (with Gary Burton), My Spanish Heart, Remembering Bud Powell, and Further Explorations (with Eddie Gomez and Paul Motian). A venturesome collaborator, Corea has teamed with artists from jazz legend Lionel Hampton to new-generation pianists Hiromi, Stefano Bollani, and Gonzalo Rubalcaba, and from banjoist Béla Fleck to vocal superstar Bobby McFerrin. Corea’s duo partnerships with Gary Burton and Herbie Hancock have endured decades. Corea’s 2014 release ranks as a new classic in his discography: Trilogy, a live triple-disc set with bassist Christian McBride and drummer Brian Blade. Winner of two Grammys, the album documents this trio interpreting classic Corea compositions (such as Spain), plus previously unreleased pieces by the pianist (Piano Sonata: The Moon), an array of jazz standards, and even a Prelude by Alexander Scriabin. All About Jazz noted: “This one certainly ranks

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CHICK COREA among his most memorable trios… [Corea] has never been more active – and with albums as superb as Trilogy… clearly at the top of his game.” Rare for a jazz musician, Corea received the Richard J. Bogomolny Award from Chamber Music America in 2010, and he broke new ground as a composer with The Continents: Concerto for Jazz Quartet and Chamber Orchestra, released in 2013 by a storied classical label, Deutsche Grammophon. Corea recorded his first album for solo piano in 1971, and he continued his intimate journey with the instrument on Solo Piano – Portraits. For the 2013 album The Vigil, Corea put together a newera electro/acoustic sextet, featuring himself on keyboards and longtime associate Tim Garland on reeds, Hadrien Feraud and Carlitos Del Puerto on bass, Charles Altura on guitar, Marcus Gilmore on drums, and Luisito Del Puerto on percussion. Recently, Corea finds himself as active as he’s ever been. A major recent highlight was Corea’s hugely acclaimed world tour with fellow piano legend Herbie Hancock, reuniting for their first fullscale tour as a duo since 1978. That first duet outing – just the pair of world-class musicians playing acoustic pianos – resulted in a pair of massively popular albums, still viewed as benchmarks today. Corea and Hancock filled some of the greatest venues on the planet. Said Corea about the tour, “Herbie is my longtime friend, one of my most important teachers and big musical inspirations. To be able to share the stage each night with him is such a highlight of the creative imagination for me.” His latest album, Chinese Butterfly, is the culmination of 50 years of musical kinship with the legendary drummer Steve Gadd. Corea and Gadd went into the studio with Lionel Loueke, Steve Wilson, Carlitos Del Puerto, and Luisito Quintero. You need to hear what they came out with: a nonstop musical rush, full of joy and beauty, showcasing six new Corea compositions and a brilliant new take on his classic “Return to Forever.”

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2019 / 2020 SEASON




Overture to Don Giovanni


most recent oregon symphony performance: May 13, 2019; Carlos Kalmar, conductor


instrumentation: 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, timpani, and strings

Piano Concerto No. 1


composed: 1787

estimated duration: 7 minutes




up-tempo section, whose lighthearted quality reflects da Ponte’s description of the libretto as an “opera giocoso” (comic opera). Don Giovanni’s enduring popularity rests in part on Mozart and da Ponte’s ingenious alternation of comic scenes with moments of grave import as they present the Don’s flawed character.

The day before Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart conducted the premiere of his opera Don Giovanni, he hurriedly jotted down the individual instrumental parts for the overture. According to several biographical accounts, the overture was finished – Mozart usually composed in his head before he wrote anything down – but, as was often his habit, Mozart did not commit the overture to paper until the last possible moment. When he led the orchestra in Prague’s Estates Theatre on October 29, 1787, Mozart conducted from memory. Don Giovanni, Mozart’s second of three collaborations with the brilliant librettist Lorenzo da Ponte, tells the story of Don Juan, the world’s most famous seducer (legend credits him with more than 2,000 conquests). After the Don tries his luck with the noblewoman Donna Anna, her father, the Commendatore, challenges him to a duel; the Don subsequently kills him. In the opera’s final moments, the Commendatore’s ghost, in the form of a stone statue, returns to cast Don Juan into the eternal flames of Hell. Two heavy D minor chords open the overture’s slow introduction; these chords announce the ghost’s arrival in the Don’s sumptuous villa. Ascending and descending scales plus formidable brass writing combine to foreshadow the opera’s powerful conclusion. Mozart contrasts this fateful beginning with an

b. 1941

composed: 1989 first oregon symphony performance instrumentation: solo piano, 2 flutes (1 doubling piccolo), 2 oboes, 2 clarinets (1 doubling bass clarinet), 2 bassoons, 2 horns, vibraphone, marimba, xylophone, vibraphone, celesta, gong, bell tree, triangle, claves, snare drum, tom toms, bass drum, suspended cymbals, crash cymbals, Chinese cymbal, tam-tam, solo acoustic bass, and strings estimated duration: 31 minutes “This is music for the millennium.” – bbc Music Magazine review of Chick Corea’s Piano Concerto No. 1 In 1981, jazz pianist Chick Corea and pianist Friedrich Gulda recorded Mozart’s Concerto for Two Pianos in E-flat Major with Nikolaus Harnoncourt and the Concertgebouw Orchestra. “The experience of playing with that sound and the quality of that musicianship just did it for me,” Corea later recalled. “I then wanted to involve myself with orchestral music.” Corea, whose eclectic musical explorations defy categorization, found himself attracted to the possibilities of orchestral composition. “The form of solo piano against and within an orchestral sound is one of the most pleasing sounds for me,” Corea observed in the 1999 program note for his First Piano Concerto, “and, of course, as a pianist, there is no other experience

CHICK COREA like intermingling my sound with the beautiful sounds of the orchestra,” Inspired by Mozart, Corea structured his first concerto along similar lines: three movements in a standard fast-slow-fast configuration. Also typical of a Mozart concerto, Corea includes an improvised cadenza in the first movement. Tim Page, reviewing the February 25, 1986, premiere at Town Hall in The New York Times, wrote, “There is much to like in this concerto… Mr. Corea has an ear for atmospheric color; his melodies are both sweet and sturdy, and one admired many elegant details throughout (a one-measure coda to the first movement, for example, altered its character completely).” The first movement conveys an optimistic, buoyant feeling; Corea’s use of the piano’s brooding lower register and the elegant curve of the string theme shape a pensive, episodic central section, with inflections of Spanish rhythms. The third movement’s propulsive drive suggests Corea’s most famous composition, Spain, as the soloist and orchestra bounce phrases back and forth. “The real pleasure, back then, was in writing the piece,” said Corea about the 1986 premiere. “But I hadn’t really given myself time to let my experience with a large work come together. It didn’t come out the way I wanted it to.” Dissatisfied with the orchestral writing, Corea put the concerto aside. A decade later, a colleague gave Corea several useful suggestions for improving the orchestral sections. Corea made a number of changes, including writing out parts for various percussion instruments. “Funnily enough, because of my percussion background, I pay the least amount of attention to the percussion parts,” Corea admitted. “In my jazz groups, I rarely write anything out for the drummer.” As he revised, Corea added several new percussion instruments to the original drum kit; the timbres of the bells and other pitched instruments give the concerto added sparkle and depth.


Selections for Solo Piano Rhapsody in Blue composed: 1924 (Rhapsody in Blue) most recent oregon symphony performance: November 6, 2017; Carlos Kalmar, conductor; Kirill Gerstein, piano (Rhapsody in Blue) instrumentation: solo piano, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, 3 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, timpani, bass drum, cymbals, gong, glockenspiel, snare drum, celesta, triangle, banjo, and strings estimated duration: 15 minutes (Rhapsody in Blue) Corea will announce his solo piano selections from the stage. Rhapsody in Blue occupies a special place in American music: it introduced jazz to classical concert audiences, and simultaneously made an instant star of its composer. From its iconic opening clarinet glissando right through its brilliant finale, Rhapsody in Blue epitomizes the Gershwin sound and transformed the 25-year-old songwriter from Tin Pan Alley into a composer of “serious” music. The story of how Rhapsody in Blue came about is as captivating as the music itself. On January 4, 1924, Ira Gershwin showed George a news report in the New York Tribune about a concert put together by jazz bandleader Paul Whiteman, grandiosely titled “An Experiment in Modern Music,” that would endeavor to trace the history of jazz.

Gershwin into writing the concerto. Whiteman also sweetened the deal by offering to have Ferde Grofé do the orchestrations. Gershwin completed Rhapsody in Blue in three weeks and was at the piano when Paul Whiteman and his Jazz Orchestra premiered Rhapsody in Blue at Aeolian Hall in New York on February 12, 1924. In 1931, Gershwin described to biographer Isaac Goldberg how the ideas for Rhapsody in Blue came to him during a train trip to Boston: “It was on the train, with its steely rhythms, its rattle-ty bang, that is so often so stimulating to a composer – I frequently hear music in the very heart of the noise… And there I suddenly heard, and even saw on paper – the complete construction of the Rhapsody, from beginning to end… I heard it as a sort of musical kaleidoscope of America, of our vast melting pot, of our unduplicated national pep, of our metropolitan madness. By the time I reached Boston, I had a definite plot of the piece, as distinguished from its actual substance.” At the premiere, Gershwin’s unique realization of this “musical kaleidoscope of America,” coupled with his phenomenal abilities at the keyboard, wowed the audience as much as the novelty of hearing jazz idioms in a “classical” work. The original opening clarinet solo, written by Gershwin, got its trademark jazzy glissando from Whiteman’s clarinetist Ross Gorman. This opening unleashes a floodgate of colorful ideas that blend seamlessly. The pulsing syncopated rhythms and showy music later give way to a warm, expansive melody that suggests the lush romanticism of Sergei Rachmaninoff. © 2019 Elizabeth Schwartz

The report concluded with a brief announcement: “George Gershwin is at work on a jazz concerto.” This was certainly news to Gershwin, who was then in rehearsals for a Broadway show, Sweet Little Devil. Gershwin contacted Whiteman to refute the Tribune article, but Whiteman eventually talked | 503-228-1353 29


Carlos Kalmar, conductor Alexi Kenney, violin Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Violin Concerto No. 3 in G Major, “Strassburg” Allegro Adagio Rondo: Allegro—Andante—Allegretto— Allegro Alexi Kenney


Symphony No. 6 in A Minor, “Tragic” Allegro energico, ma non troppo Andante moderato Scherzo: Powerful Finale: Allegro moderato This concert is being recorded for future broadcast. We ask our audience to be as quiet as possible during the performance. ARLENE SCHNITZER CONCERT HALL

CONCERT CONVERSATION Conducted one hour before each performance, the Concert Conversation will feature Music Director Carlos Kalmar and Brandi Parisi, host of All Classical Portland. You can also enjoy the Concert Conversation in the comfort of your own home. Visit to watch the video on demand.


Alexi Kenney With this concert, Alexi Kenney makes his debut with the Oregon Symphony. The recipient of a 2016 Avery Fisher Career Grant, violinist Kenney has been named “a talent to watch” by The New York Times, which also noted his “architect’s eye for structure and space and a tone that ranges from the achingly 30

fragile to full-bodied robustness.” His win at the 2013 Concert Artists Guild Competition at the age of 19 led to a critically acclaimed Carnegie Hall debut recital at Weill Hall. Recent highlights include debuts with the Omaha Symphony, Sinfonia Gulf Coast, Asheville Symphony, and Wheeling Symphony, and his return to the Indianapolis Symphony. Kenney has appeared as soloist with the Detroit, Columbus, California, Amarillo, Jacksonville, Portland, Riverside, Santa Fe, and Tulare County symphonies. He has appeared in recital on Carnegie Hall’s Distinctive Debuts series and at Caramoor, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and Jordan Hall in Boston, the

Phillips Collection in Washington D.C., the Green Music Center at Sonoma State University (ca), and Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival. He has been profiled by Strings magazine and The New York Times, has written for The Strad, and has been featured on Performance Today, wqxr-ny’s Young Artists Showcase, wfmtChicago, and npr’s From the Top. Chamber music continues to be a main focus of Alexi’s life – he is a member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s The Bowers Program (formerly cms Two). He tours with Musicians from Marlboro and musicians from Ravinia’s Steans Institute and regularly performs at festivals including the Marlboro Music Festival, Music@Menlo, Ravinia, and


















| 01 BELL EVUE • 20



MAHLER’S SIX TH Yellow Barn. He has collaborated with artists including Pamela Frank, Miriam Fried, Steven Isserlis, Kim Kashkashian, Gidon Kremer, and Christian Tetzlaff. Born in Palo Alto, California, in 1994, Kenney holds a Bachelor of Music and Artist Diploma from the New England Conservatory in Boston, where he studied with Donald Weilerstein and Miriam Fried. Previous teachers include Wei He, Jenny Rudin, and Natasha Fong.


Violin Concerto No. 3 in G Major, K. 216, “Strassburg” composed: 1775 most recent oregon symphony performance: January 7, 2002; Pavel Kogan, conductor; Robert McDuffie, violin instrumentation: solo violin, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 horns, and strings estimated duration: 24 minutes

them as the composer’s “serenade style… a youthful music of yearning but not of grief, imbued with an innocent utopianism, a faith in perfectibility, beauty, and sensual fulfillment.” The opening Allegro features a melody Mozart wrote for his opera Il re pastore (The Shepherd King), first performed in Salzburg the spring of 1775. Mozart’s use of this tune in two contemporaneous compositions – one staged and sung, the other using only instruments – lends a theatrical dimension to the concerto, recasting the soloist as the star of an unfolding drama. Continuing the analogy, the Adagio’s expressive melody becomes a wordless aria for the solo violin, as winds provide an understated accompaniment. In the concluding movement, Mozart showcases a Hungarian melody known as the “Strassburger.” This tune features an odd shift of meter – from 3/8 to 2/2 – and a corresponding alternation between G minor and G major. With these quick changes of rhythm and key, Mozart brings his third concerto to a lively conclusion.


When we think of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart performing, we tend to imagine him seated at a keyboard. Mozart wrote nearly 30 concertos for piano but also penned concertos for other solo instruments, including five for violin. We know less about Mozart’s violin concertos than those for piano – particularly why and for whom they were written. Mozart wrote most of his piano concertos as performance vehicles for himself. The same may be true of the violin concertos, as Mozart was a first-rate violinist, thanks to the influence of his father Leopold. In his time, Leopold Mozart had a reputation as a skilled violinist and violin teacher; his treatise on violin pedagogy is still in print. As a young boy, Mozart traveled all over Europe as Leopold showed off his son’s virtuosity on both violin and keyboard. During his travels, Mozart also absorbed Italian musical style, with its emphasis on lyricism and bravura technique. Both qualities infuse Mozart’s violin concertos. Biographer Maynard Solomon describes 32

Symphony No. 6 in A Minor, “Tragic” composed: 1903–04, rev. 1906 most recent oregon symphony performance: November 5, 2012; Carlos Kalmar, conductor instrumentation: piccolo, 4 flutes (2 also doubling piccolo), 4 oboes (2 doubling English horn), piccolo clarinet, 3 clarinets, bass clarinet, 4 bassoons, contrabassoon, 8 horns, 6 trumpets, 3 tenor trombones, bass trombone, tuba, timpani, bass drum, birch rod, cowbells, cymbals, deep bells, glockenspiel, hammer, rattle, 2 snare drums, tam-tam, triangle, xylophone, celesta, 2 harps, and strings estimated duration: 80 minutes In November 1901, Gustav Mahler entered a period of personal and professional fulfillment. He was at the height of his prestigious, high-powered conducting career in Vienna; his own music was beginning to garner more

support and acclaim, and, after more than 40 years as a bachelor with a gossipworthy personal life, he met a vivacious, artistic woman, Alma Schindler, 20 years his junior. Mahler and Alma pursued a brief, intense courtship and married four months after their first meeting. Their first daughter, Maria Anna, arrived in November 1902; the following summer, at his lakeside villa in the Austrian Alps, Mahler composed two of the movements for his Sixth Symphony. A year later, Mahler left a heavily pregnant Alma in Vienna to return to the Alpine village of Maiernigg and finish the symphony. After Alma gave birth to their second daughter, Anna Justina, she joined Mahler at Maiernigg for the remainder of the summer. What compelled Mahler, in the midst of so much happiness and creative productivity, to write a symphony full of dark, profoundly despairing music? Mahler dithered about adding the nickname “Tragic” to his A Minor Symphony – he included it on the program of the premiere performance and an early version of the score – but there is no appellation more apt: the music veers from doom-laden portents to moments of mounting anxiety, fear, and hopelessness, and evocations of times past filled with grief, even defeat. The Sixth Symphony was just one example of Mahler’s compulsion to create the darkest possible music: during this time, Mahler also set some of poet Friedrich Rückert’s Kindertotenlieder (Songs on the Death of Children). Mahler maintained a sincere belief in an artist’s ability to prognosticate or even influence future events through art, but once that artistic vision was realized, there was no escaping its fateful predictions. As the Sixth Symphony poured out of him, Mahler became frightened of what it foretold. “No other work flowed so directly from his heart as this one,” wrote Alma. “We both cried at the time; we felt so deeply what this music meant, what it forebodingly told us. The Sixth is [Mahler’s] most personal work and is also a prophetic one. In the Songs on the Death of Children and in the Sixth, he ‘musically anticipated’ his life… In the last

MAHLER’S SIX TH movement, he describes himself and his downfall, or as he said later, the downfall of his hero. ‘The hero who receives three blows from fate, the third of which fells him, like a tree.’ These are Mahler’s words… He too, received three blows from fate, and the third did fell him. At the time however, he was cheerful, conscious of the greatness of his work.” The “three blows” fell a year after Mahler led the premiere of the Sixth Symphony in Essen on May 27, 1906. After a long and vicious campaign mounted by his detractors, Mahler was forced to resign his position with the Vienna State Opera in May 1907. That summer at Maiernigg, both of Mahler’s daughters caught scarlet fever and diphtheria; Anna eventually recovered, but Maria died. In the days following her death, Mahler was diagnosed with an incurable heart ailment. Mahler presents several themes in the first movement, some of which recur in later sections. The opening march sets the mood, a determined foray into depths unknown. Trumpets sound a bright A major chord, which shifts into an oboe chorus transforming the chord to a melancholy A minor. This brief but significant moment serves as an aural signpost, or perhaps the musical equivalent of Dante’s warning at the entrance to Hell: “Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.” “After he had finished the first movement,” Alma wrote, “Mahler came down from the woods and said, ‘I have tried to capture you in a theme; I do not know whether I have been successful. You will have to put up with it.’ It is the long, sweeping theme of the first movement of the Sixth Symphony.” The unbridled passion of Alma’s string theme contrasts starkly with the ominous music preceding it. As was his wont, Mahler often continued revising his symphonies, even after they were premiered and published. With regard to the Sixth, Mahler experimented with the order of the two inner movements. The manuscript and first printed edition, which was issued before the first performance, has the Scherzo second and the Andante third. However, according to a contemporary

of Mahler’s who was present at the rehearsals and premiere in Essen, Mahler could not decide if he should perform the symphony as written, or switch the order of the Andante and Scherzo. At the last moment, Mahler reversed himself and moved the Andante to second; when the second printed edition of the score came out, Mahler stuck to his revised ordering. There are numerous accounts of Mahler later regretting this decision and favoring his original version. Musically valid arguments can be made for either choice, and conductors continue to wrestle with this artistic conundrum today. The Andante, the only one of the symphony’s four movements not grounded in A minor, offers a gentle escape into nostalgic memories of childhood. Its themes unwind sinuously as a pastoral idyll. Mahler uses cowbells to evoke the countryside, but their sound also triggered a series of sad childhood memories, which he described in an 1879 letter, “I go to the meadow, where the tinkling of cowbells lulls me to dreaming… Behind me in the village, the evening bells chime, and their chorus is borne across to me by a kind breeze… Shadowy memories of my life pass before me, like longforgotten ghosts of departed happiness.” Mahler indicated the Scherzo’s tempo as “Wuchtig” (weighty or ponderous). Its heavy tread recalls the mood of the first movement. Alma said Mahler described the trio section as “the arrhythmic playing of two children, staggering through the sand. Horrible – those children’s voices become more and more tragic, and at the end there is one fading little voice, whimpering.” The abrupt juxtaposition of the trio and the Scherzo is a chilling, grotesque caricature. The Finale sums up all the musical and psychological ideas of the preceding three movements. Although it is the longest finale in any Mahler symphony, its impact derives not from length but from an accumulation of psychic/emotional weariness. The hammer blows obliterate any lingering hope of rescue from the tragic fate Mahler conjured up with this immense, powerful music.

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© 2019 Elizabeth Schwartz | 503-228-1353 33



Carlos Kalmar, conductor Mary Birnbaum, stage director and script adaptor Portland State University Chamber Choir Ethan Sperry, artistic director Sara Jean Tosetti, costumes Anshu Bhatia, sets and lighting design Justin Dunlap, lighting design Jon Wangsgard, stage manager See program insert for full cast and biographies. Jean Sibelius/ William Shakespeare

The Tempest Overture Act 1 Miranda Falls Asleep Ariel Flies In Chorus of the Winds Ariel Hurries Away Ariel’s First Song Ariel’s Second Song Act 2 Interlude [Prospero] The Oak Tree Ariel’s Third Song Interlude [Caliban] Stephano’s Song Caliban’s Song Act 3 Interlude [Miranda] Humoreske Canon Devil’s Dance Ariel as a Harpy Dance II [The Devils Dance Away] Intermezzo



Act 4 Ariel Flies In Ariel’s Fourth Song The Rainbow Iris’ Recitation Juno’s Song Dance of the Naiads The Harvester Ariel Flies In Ariel Flies Off Ariel Flies In The Dogs Act 5 Overture Intrada Ariel’s Fifth Song Cortège Epilogue ARLENE SCHNITZER CONCERT HALL

CONCERT CONVERSATION Conducted one hour before each performance, the Concert Conversation will feature Music Director Carlos Kalmar and Christa Wessel, host of All Classical Portland. You can also enjoy the Concert Conversation in the comfort of your own home. Visit to watch the video on demand.

First presented in 2016/17, our SoundSights series featured collaborative works with visual artists Michael Curry and Rose Bond, and director Mary Birnbaum. All three artists return this season with new productions to make you think afresh about music and art.


Mary Birnbaum Mary Birnbaum last appeared with the Oregon Symphony on September 26, 2016, when she stage directed Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle with conductor Carlos Kalmar. Birnbaum, whose stage direction of opera and theater The New York Times critic Anthony Tommasini called “viscerally overwhelming” (Rape of Lucretia at

Juilliard) and “genuinely insightful … vibrant” (The Classical Style at Carnegie Hall), works both internationally, from Taiwan (Otello) to Central America (L’elisir d’amore and La bohème at the National Theaters of Costa Rica and Guatemala), Australia, and Israel, and across the United States (Opera Philadelphia, Seattle Opera, Opera Columbus, Virginia Arts Festival, Ojai Festival, and Boston Baroque). In Opera Magazine, George Loomis wrote that Birnbaum’s “thoughtful direction [of Eugene Onegin at Juilliard] was rich with imaginative touches,” and the Houston Press termed her Hansel and Gretel a “stunner, perhaps the company’s most perfect realization. [The Company] has found a director of real quality in Mary Birnbaum.”

Birnbaum has been honored to work with such musical artists as Stephen Wadsworth, Jeremy Denk, Matt Aucoin, Kristin Kuster, Susanna Phillips, Stuart Skelton, and Steven Stucky. Currently associate director of the post-graduate Artist Diploma in Opera Studies program at Juilliard, Birnbaum teaches and coaches acting for singers at Juilliard, Bard College, and in the Lindemann Young Artists Program at the Metropolitan Opera. A graduate of Harvard College, Birnbaum trained professionally in physical theater at L’École Jacques Lecoq in Paris. She is a past nominee at the International Opera Awards, and her production of La bohème opened the Santa Fe Opera season in 2019. | 503-228-1353 35


Sara Jean Tosetti

Anshuman Bhatia

Sara Jean Tosetti is a New York Citybased costume designer, originally from Paris, France. Designs include Salome (LA Opera, directed by David Paul), Xerxes, Cato in Utica (Glimmerglass Festival, directed by Tazewell Thompson), the World premiere of Laura Kaminsky’s As One (Brooklyn Academy of Music, directed by Ken Cazan), Radamisto (Julliard, directed by James Darrah), Carmen (Central City Opera, directed by Danny Pelzig), Orpheus in the Underworld, Rinaldo, Cendrillon (cco, directed by Marc Astafan), A Flea in Her Ear (Del Rep & Westport, directed by Mark Lamos), Manuscript, The Exonerated (Daryl Roth Theatre, directed by Bob Balaban), The Maids, ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore (Red Bull Theatre at the Duke, directed by Jesse Berger), West Side Story, Much Ado About Nothing (Barrington Stage Company, directed by Julianne Boyd), Into the Woods, and Richard III (Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival). Additional credits include the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Opera Bastille, Ceasar’s Palace in Las Vegas, and multiple Broadway Shows.

Scenic and lighting designer Anshuman Bhatia’s designs for opera, theater, and dance have been seen at Santa Fe Opera, Beijing’s National Center for the Performing Arts, Dublin’s Civic Theater, Soho Rep, The Public, The Atlantic, Arena Stage in Washington D.C., The Park Avenue Armory, Bard Music Festival, wp Theater, The Juilliard School, Madison Opera, Classic Stage Company, here Arts Center, LoftOpera, Ma-Yi Theater Company, Keen Company, Pacific Symphony, Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, Virginia Arts Festival, Rattlestick Theater, The Sheen Center, and Troy’s empac. Upcoming work can be seen at Columbus Opera, Opera Omaha, and Montclair’s Peak Performance Series.

She was awarded the Princess Grace Award in Design as well as the Bel Geddes Design Enhancement Award. She earned a bfa and mfa from nyu’s Tisch School of the Arts, with Outstanding Achievement in Design.


Portland State University Chamber Choir Classics Today calls The Portland State University Chamber Choir “amongst the finest choirs in the world.” Since its founding in 1975, the Chamber Choir has performed and competed in venues across the country and around the world, earning over 30 medals and awards in international choir competitions including being the only American choir to have won the Seghizzi International Competition for Choral Singing in Italy in 2013, and the Bali International Choral Festival in Indonesia in 2017. The Chamber Choir has performed

multiple times at national and divisional conferences of the American Choral Director’s Association and The National Association for Music Education, and in 2014 hosted the national conference of the National Collegiate Choral Organization. In the summer of 2020, they will represent the United States at the World Symposium on Choral Music in Auckland, New Zealand. In February 2011, the Chamber Choir collaborated with Portland-born composer Morten Lauridsen, who described their singing as “an absolutely top-notch superb display of choral artistry.” The Chamber Choir’s 2012 cd A Drop in the Ocean was favorably reviewed and featured in both Fanfare and Stereophile magazines and was a finalist for the 2012 American Prize in Choral Music. Their 2014 recording Into Unknown Worlds was named a “Recording to Die For” by Stereophile magazine. It was the first-ever student recording to receive this distinction and was a finalist for the 2014 cara Award for Best Classical Album. Their latest album, The Doors of Heaven – Music of Eriks Esenvalds, was released by Naxos. It debuted at #1 on the Billboard Traditional Classical Chart (a first for a university choir) and was also a #1 seller on Amazon and iTunes. Apple Music added the album to its “A-List Classical Playlist.” Since 2013, the Portland State Chamber Choir has performed regularly with the Oregon Symphony in works as diverse as Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Symphony No. 9, Handel’s Messiah, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, and Stravinsky’s Persephone in a fully staged production directed by Michael Curry, whose credits include The Lion King and Cirque du Soleil. In 2014, they presented the Portland premiere performances of both David Lang’s Little Match Girl Passion and Samuel Barber’s The Lovers.


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SIBELIUS’ THE TEMPEST PORTLAND STATE UNIVERSITY CHAMBER CHOIR ROSTER Soprano Rachel Bard Emily Bevard Racheal Bingold Hannah Delgado Elli Fagliano Jessie Flasschoen Madisen Hallberg Mercy Hallman Natalie Hurley Maeve Stier Alto Olivia Alfso Aimee Altamirano Shayla Bailey Abigail Graves Elizabeth Harper Isabella Moore Lydia O’Brien Rebecca Parsons Alyssa Paulson Hannah Schacht Ruthb Taziyeva Vanessa Zmolek

Tenor Garrett Bond Briargate Curry Reid Duhrkoop Brandon Hilsabeck Andrew Lucht Avesta Mirashrafi Bryan Morris-Brand Chase Shoemaker Ulises Zavaleta Bass Rex Bennett Jeff Evans André Flynn Zach Frunk Spencer Hughes Jorden Moss Nicholas Nipp Eric Olson Luis Ortiz-Rodriguez Daniel NyounaiHerrera John Yang

Program Notes OPEN MON-SAT: 10-6 SUN: 12-5


The Tempest, Op. 109 composed: 1925–26



318 SW TAYLOR, PORTLAND @artisticportland facebook/artisticportland


first oregon symphony performance instrumentation: 5 solo singers, 6 actors, satb chorus, 3 flutes (2 doubling piccolo), 2 oboes, 3 clarinets (1 doubling bass clarinet), 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, timpani, bass drum, castanets, cymbals, glockenspiel, military drum, snare drum, tambourine, triangle, harmonium, harp, and strings estimated duration: 130 minutes In 1901, Axel Carpelan wrote to his friend Jean Sibelius, “Now look here Mr. S., shouldn’t you someday direct your interest to the dramas of Shakespeare… The Tempest should be very appropriate for you: Prospero (magician), Miranda, spirits

of the earth and air etc.” At the time, Sibelius was busy with other projects, but Carpelan’s suggestion lingered in the composer’s mind. In the spring of 1925, Sibelius’ Danish publisher Wilhelm Hansen inquired, “Have you written any music to The Tempest?” Hansen told Sibelius of the Royal Theatre of Copenhagen’s upcoming production of Shakespeare’s play and mentioned that producer Johannes Poulsen, who was familiar with Sibelius’ theater music, had requested a score from Finland’s greatest composer. Sibelius accepted and completed the commission; his Opus 109 contains 34 distinct sections of varying length, totaling just over an hour of music. William Shakespeare wrote The Tempest just two years before his death in 1613. The Tempest, along with Cymbeline, The Winter’s Tale, and Pericles, characterize a new type of Elizabethan play: the romance, or tragicomedy. Magic, romantic entanglements, fantastical journeys, jealousy, and loss drive the action of a typical tragicomedy. With The Tempest featuring such a wide array of creative story elements to work with, and the promise of a larger-than-usual orchestra and a resident chorus at the Royal Theatre, Sibelius had a wealth of resources from which to craft a musically rich narrative. After The Tempest, Sibelius’ final theatrical score, he composed Tapiola, an orchestral tone poem that turned out to be his last completed work. After Tapiola’s premiere, in late December 1926, Sibelius largely retreated from public life. He continued writing music, but his age, failing health, alcoholism, and impossibly high standards of selfperfection prevented him from finishing anything. Aino, Sibelius’ wife, recalled, “In the 1940s, there was a great autoda-fé at Ainola [the Sibelius’ country home]. My husband collected a number of the manuscripts in a laundry basket and burned them on the open fire in the dining room… I did not have the strength to be present and left the room...” In this context, The Tempest is a valediction, a leave-taking, although neither its composer nor his audience knew it at

SIBELIUS’ THE TEMPEST the time. Sibelius hints at this musical subtext, particularly in the music he wrote for Prospero, which occasionally verges on the elegiac. Sibelius’ opening Overture depicts a shipwreck in a maelstrom, “one of the most effective and terrifying ‘storms’ in all music,” according to biographer Robert Layton. “… Ralph Wood aptly called it ‘the most thoroughly onomatopoetic stretch of music ever written.’ This is no overstatement: the surging seas, strange distant lights and howling gusts of wind (percussion, horns) make an almost physical impact. It is a piece of the utmost virtuosity, and as sheer tone-painting is extraordinarily powerful.” Several other distinct sections stand out. The Oak Tree presents an ethereal portrait of the spirit Ariel, who yearns to be released from servitude to the magician Prospero. A haunting solo flute meanders through a doleful melody accompanied by harp arpeggios, like a caged bird dreaming of freedom. The full orchestra introduces the “monster” Caliban, a hideous creature also forced to do Prospero’s bidding. Caliban’s music begins with a forceful and unpredictably lopsided string theme followed by an odd wind countermelody. Sibelius also signals Caliban’s “otherness” through the use of “exotic” percussion instruments: triangle, xylophone, cymbals, and bass drum. Miranda’s Interlude, a short lilting string melody, reveals a sheltered young woman, innocent to the workings of the world, who has grown up under her father’s close supervision. Prospero’s Interlude, a chorale for strings, has an air of nostalgia. Prospero promises to both relinquish his magic powers and set Ariel free, once Prospero, with Ariel’s help, has brought about the marriage of Miranda and young Ferdinand. Ariel sings several songs (“Full Fathom Five,” “Come Unto These Yellow Sands,” “While You Here Do Snoring Lie,” “Before You Can Say ‘Come’ and ‘Go,’” and “Where the Bee Sucks”). In Sibelius’ music, the orchestral interludes introducing the main characters also have a song-like quality, with their clear thematic framework. In our production,

the singer/actors will use English for their spoken dialogue and perform their sung lines in the original Finnish. Poulsen’s and Sibelius’ The Tempest premiered on March 15, 1926, at the Royal Theatre in Copenhagen to warm reviews. Sibelius’ music earned particular notice and praise. One critic observed, “Shakespeare and Sibelius, those two geniuses, have found each other.” Mary Birnbaum, who made her Oregon Symphony debut with her 2016 production of Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle, returns to direct The Tempest. “I was so excited to sink my teeth into the task of combining the dramaturgy of the Shakespeare with Sibelius’ music, which is only one hour,” Birnbaum said in a recent interview. “We’re doing all of Sibelius’ music, but I’ve reduced the number of characters; some very minor characters get cut. However, everybody will understand the story; we haven’t eliminated any of the story elements. It’s a streamlined production.” Birnbaum noted that Sibelius’ The Tempest music has action embedded within it. “All the music is character driven,” she explained. In some scenes, the music moves the narrative forward without dialogue. “For example, in most productions, the wedding procession with Juno and Ceres and Iris is usually staged as a big pageant. Ours will just feature the music, and some action happens through movement rather than words. It’s a spare production, but it will feel like a full-hall event, like we’re on the island with the characters. Because the piece is really about the reveal of Prospero’s art, i.e., that it’s all artifice, there will be wonderful visual moments.” The Tempest is often staged as a postcolonial narrative, an interpretation Birnbaum will incorporate into her production. “We’re in a time of burgeoning ‘wokeness’ about immigration and indigenous land rights, and we’re starting to be more conscious of infringement [on others], past the boundaries of what we own. Those ideas are going to figure heavily in what we do.”

RECOMMENDED RECORDINGS FROM STEPHEN HOUGH PLAYS MENDELSSOHN Boulanger: Of a Sad Evening and Of a Spring Morning Yan Pascal Tortelier – bbc Philharmonic Orchestra Chandos 9745 Mendelssohn: Piano Concerto No. 1 Stephen Hough, piano Lawrence Foster – City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra Hyperion 66969

Schumann: Symphony No. 1, “Spring” Leonard Bernstein – Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra 2-Deutsche Grammophon 453049 FROM MAHLER’S SIXTH Mozart: Violin Concerto No. 3 Arthur Grumiaux, violin Sir Colin Davis – London Symphony Orchestra 2-Philips 438328 Mahler: Symphony No. 6, “Tragic” Bernard Haitink – Chicago Symphony Orchestra 2-cso Resound 901804 FROM SIBELIUS’ THE TEMPEST Sibelius: The Tempest Osmo Vanska – Lahti Symphony Orchestra & Chorus bis 581

Recordings selected by Michael Parsons, who studied music at Lewis & Clark College and has worked professionally with classical recordings for several decades. Select recordings will also be available for purchase in the Grand Lobby.

© 2019 Elizabeth Schwartz | 503-228-1353 39


Jeff Tyzik, conductor Byron Stripling, trumpet and vocals Jeff Tyzik Traditional/Arr. Robinson Traditional/Arr. Tyzik

The Skater’s Overture: Variations on a Theme by Waldeufel What Child Is This? Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

Billy Hayes/Jay W. Johnson/ Arr. Hayes

Blue Christmas

Traditional/Arr. Finkel/Cook

Have a Little Dreidel

Traditional/Arr. Grimes

Silent Night

Traditional/Arr. Mackrel

Go Tell It on the Mountain Byron Stripling

INTERMISSION Arr. Tyzik John Frederick Coots/ Haven Gillespie/Arr. Tyzik Irving Berlin/Arr. Cook Traditional/Arr. Tyzik Felix Bernard/ Richard B. Smith/Arr. Tyzik John Newton/Arr. Marr/Weister Traditional/Arr. Cook

Carol of the Drums Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town White Christmas O Come All Ye Faithful Winter Wonderland Amazing Grace Joy to the World Byron Stripling




Byron Stripling A powerhouse trumpeter, gifted with a soulful voice and a charismatic onstage swagger, Byron Stripling has delighted audiences internationally. As soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra, Stripling has performed frequently under the baton of Keith Lockhart; he has also been the featured soloist on the pbs television special Evening at Pops with conductors John Williams and Lockhart. Currently, Stripling serves as artistic director and conductor of the highly acclaimed Columbus Jazz Orchestra.

Since his Carnegie Hall debut with the New York Pops, Stripling has emerged as one of the United States’ most popular symphony pops guest artists, having performed with over 100 orchestras around the world including the Boston Pops, National Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Toronto Symphony, and Dallas Symphony, to name a few. He has been a featured soloist at the Hollywood Bowl and performs at jazz festivals throughout the world. An accomplished actor and singer, Stripling was chosen, following a worldwide search, to star in the lead role of the Broadway-bound musical Satchmo. Television viewers have enjoyed his work as soloist on the worldwide telecast of the Grammy Awards. Stripling earned his stripes as lead trumpeter and soloist with the Count Basie Orchestra under the direction of

Thad Jones and Frank Foster. He has also played and recorded extensively with the bands of Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Herman, Dave Brubeck, Lionel Hampton, Clark Terry, Louis Bellson, and Buck Clayton, in addition to The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, The Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, and The grp All Star Big Band. Stripling enjoys conducting seminars and master classes at colleges, universities, conservatories, and high schools. His informative talks, combined with his incomparable wit and charm, make him a favorite guest speaker to groups of all ages. Stripling was educated at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and the Interlochen Arts Academy in Interlochen, Michigan. One of his greatest joys is to return, periodically, to Eastman and Interlochen as a special guest lecturer. A resident of Ohio, Stripling lives in the country with his wife, Alexis – a former dancer, writer, and poet – and their beautiful daughters.


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OUR SUPPORTERS The Oregon Symphony thanks these individuals for their generous contributions received in the 2018/19 Season (July 1, 2018–June 30, 2019). We apologize for any omissions or misspellings. Please notify us of any adjustments. TRANSFORMATIONAL: $100,000–ABOVE

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BRONZE BATON: $4,000–$5,999

Anonymous (6) An Advised Fund of ocf Ajitahrydaya Gift Fund Carole Alexander Kirby & Amy Allen Trudy Allen & Bob Varitz Meredith & Robert Amon David & Jacqueline Backman Bob Ball & Grant Jones Ed & Becky Bard Wayne Bartolet & Susan Remick Michael & Barbara Besand in Memory of Lillian (Lee) Besand David Blumhagen Josh & Wendie Bratt Gregory & Susan Buhr Tom Burke & Axel Brunger Ellen E. Bussing§ Eve Callahan* & Scott Taylor Mrs. Robert G. Cameron Cynthia & Stanley Cohan Mike & Becky DeCesaro Nicholas & Jamie Denler Ginette DePreist Richard B. Dobrow, M.D. Donald & Katharine Epstein Kenneth & Carol Fransen Y. Fukuta Liz Fuller & Brent Barton Richard Gallagher Robert & Carolyn Gelpke Daniel Gibbs & Lois Seed Jamieson & Tiffanie Grabenhorst Don Hagge & Vicki Lewis Paul Hamilton Jamey Hampton & Ashley Roland Kirk & Erin Hanawalt Sonja L. Haugen Dennis & Judy Hedberg Diane M. Herrmann Dan & Pat Holmquist Brad & Bente Houle Dennis Johnson & Steven Smith

Anonymous (1) Anne M. Barbey David E. & Mary C. Becker Fund of ocf John & Yvonne Branchflower Kay Bristow Margery Cohn & Marvin Richmond Terry & Peggy Crawford Dr. & Mrs. David Cutler J. M. Deeney, M.D. Allen L. Dobbins Wayne & Julie Drinkward Mr. & Mrs. Dale Dvorak Mark & Ann Edlen Susan & Andrew Franklin Dr. Steve Grover Robert & Dorothy Haley Hibler Franke Foundation Marsh Hieronimus Carrie Hooten & David Giramma William H. Hunt Oregon Symphony Association Fund Jeff & Krissy Johnson Mark & Katherine Kralj Paul Labby Dorothy Lemelson Fernando Leon, M.D. & Dolores Leon, M.D. Mr. & Mrs. Robert McCall June McLean Hannelore Mitchell-Schict+ Hester H. Nau Susan Olson & Bill Nelson Michael & Janice Opton Barbara Page Mark Palmen Parsons Family Fund of the ocf Jane Partridge Franklin & Dorothy Piacentini Charitable Trust Fedor G. Pikus

CONDUCTOR’S CIRCLE: $2,500–$3,999

Penelope Johnstone Barbara Kahl & Roger Johnston Susan D. Keil David & Virginia Kingsbury Drs. Arnold & Elizabeth Klein Lakshman Krishnamurthy & Rasha Esmat Mary Lago Paul W. Leavens Cary & Dorothy Lewis Eric & Hollie Lindauer Peter & Allison Lyneham Dana & Susan Marble M. & L. Marks Family Fund of ocf Sir James & Lady McDonald Designated Fund of ocf Duane & Barbara McDougall Bonnie McLellan Violet & Robert+ Metzler Anne K Millis Fund of ocf Dolores & Michael Moore Lindley Morton & Corrine Oishi John & Nancy Murakami Jon Naviaux & Anne Kilkenny Ward & Pamela Nelson John & Ginger Niemeyer Larry & Caron Ogg George & Deborah Olsen Barbara & Art Palmer Charles & Ruth Poindexter Janet C. Plummer§ & Donald S. Rushmer Katie Poppe & Sam House Lawrence Powlesland & James Russel Vicki Reitenauer & Carol Gabrielli Jeff & Kathleen Rubin Brooks & Wendi Schaener Susan Schnitzer Mrs. & Mr.* Francine Shetterly Peter Shinbach Jaymi & F. Sladen Sue & Drew Snyder George & Molly Spencer Annetta & Ed St. Clair David Staehely Jack & Crystal Steffen Garry & Ardith Stensland Straub Collaborative, Inc. Eustacia Su Drs. John & Betty+ Thompson Robert Trotman & William Hetzelson Charles & Alice Valentino Ravi Vedanayagam & Ursula Lukert David & Christine Vernier Drs. Bastian & Barbara Wagner Wells Family Foundation Elaine M. Whiteley+ Robert & Margaret Wiesenthal

Davida & Slate Wilson Loring & Margaret Winthrop Jeffrey Yandle & Molly Moran-Yandle Zephyr Charitable Foundation Inc. Charlene Zidell

CONCERTO SOCIETY: $1,000–$2,499

Anonymous (10) Markus Albert Joseph Allan & Karen Saul Dr. Christopher Amling Jonathan & Deanne Ater Michael Axley & Kim Malek Stephen S. Babson+ Steve & Mary Baker James & Kathryn Bash John & Claudette Beahrs Eric Bell Broughton & Mary Bishop Family Advised Fund of cfsww Paul Black & Greg Eicher Priscilla Blumel Lynne & Frank Bocarde Henry Bodzin Benjamin & Sandra Bole Mrs. Fanny P. Bookout Fred & Diane Born Mr. & Mrs. Peter Brix Christopher Brooks* & Brittney Clark Craig & Karen Butler Martin & Truddy Cable Barbara & Robb Cason Carlos Castro-Pareja Audrey & Stephen Cheng

Charles Clarkson Classical Up Close‡ Holly Cohen Maurice Comeau, M.D. Jeffrey G. Condit Susan & Mark Cooksey James & E. Anne Crumpacker Abby & Marvin Dawson Enrique deCastro Edward & Karen Demko William Dolan & Suzanne Bromschwig Kay Doyle Tom & Roberta Drewes Gerard & Sandra Drummond Charlene Dunning & Donald Runnels Richard & Jill Schnitzer Edelson Douglas Egan & Susan Bach Ray & Nancy Friedman Paul Gehlar David & Kiki Gindler Michael & Gail Gombos Harriet & Mitch Greenlick David & Caroline Greger Dr. & Mrs. Price Gripekoven Jeffrey & Sandy Grubb Louis & Judy Halvorsen Drs. James & Linda Hamilton Howard & Molly Harris Pamela Henderson & Allen Wasserman Jane & Ken Hergenhan Frances F. Hicks Joseph & Bette Hirsch Margaret & Jerry Hoerber Eric & Ronna Hoffman Fund of ocf Joseph Holloway, Sr.

Lee & Penney Hoodenpyle Pamela Hooten & Karen Zumwalt Pam Horan Arthur Hung Doug Inglis Jon Jaqua & Kimberly Cooper David Jentz Harlan Jones Bob Kaake Peter & Patricia Kane Carol Brooks Keefer Alexis Kennedy Douglas & Selby Key Fred Kirchhoff & Ron Simonis Sheldon Klapper & Sue Hickey John Kochis Kevin Komos & Bruce Suttmeier Sarah Kwak‡ & Vali Phillips‡ Frank Langfitt & MJ Steen Thomas M. Lauderdale* Dr. & Mrs. Mark Leavitt Dr. John & Elaine Lemmer, Jr. Phyllis J. Leonard Carol Schnitzer Lewis Fund of ocf Joanne Lilley Patrice Louie & Jeffrey Courion Richard & Diane Lowensohn Jerome Magill Linda & Ken Mantel Gayle & Jerry Marger Bel-Ami & Mark Margoles Dante Marrocco & Julia Marrocco Bob Martindale & Gwyneth Paulson Carolyn McMurchie

Karen McNamee Anthony Merrill & Cheryl Thompson-Merrill Eric & Sarah Merten Sherrey & Robert Meyer Mia Hall Miller & Matthew Miller Greg & Sonya Morgansen Drs. Beth & Seth Morton Virginia S. Mullen+ Chris & Tom Neilsen Ralph & Susan Nelson Peter & Cassie Northrup Libby Noyes Marianne Ott Thomas Palmer & Ann Carter Yoona Park & Tom Johnson Duane & Corinne Paulson Richard & Helen Phillips Diane Plumridge Hugh Porter & Jill Soltero Wally & Bettsy Preble William Pressly & Carole Douglass Dr. & Mrs. Kevin Proctor Ronald & Lee Ragen Dr. Gerald & Alene B. Rich Jan Robertson Anna Roe & Ken Schriver Rebecca Rooks Debora Roy Joshua Sabraw Robert & Ann Sacks Michael Sands & Jane Robinson Steven & Karen Schoenbrun Dr. & Mrs. George Sebastian Chris Sherry Gregory Shields The Shulevitz Family

Dr. Rick Simpson Albert Solheim Ben & Jill Souede Jack & Charlene Stephenson Anne Stevenson Rabbi Ariel Stone & Dr. Joe Thaler Barbara J. & Jon R. Stroud Sandra Suran Drs. Donald & Roslyn Elms Sutherland Matt & Bethany Thomas Richard & Larie Thomas Mike & Priscilla Thompson Laura Tomas & Jason Martin Ann Van Fleet Don & Marian Vollum Bill & Peggy Wagner Bill & Janet Wagner Kevin & Sharon Wei Joan & David Weil Weiss Fund of ocf Cameron J. Wiley & Carey Whitt Wiley Carol S. Witherell Bing Wong Jane Work Darrell & Geneva Wright Dr. Candace Young Lawrence & Jo Ann Young *current board ‡current musician §current staff

One person. One single, generous person, just like you, can make an impact. And when generous people, just like you, join together, they can make an exponential impact. We help make this happen. See how other people have partnered with Oregon Community Foundation to plan and amplify the impact of their giving across the state of Oregon at



O R E G O N C F.O R G / YO U | 503-228-1353 43





Encore Society The Oregon Symphony Encore Society was established to thank and recognize those generous individuals who have remembered the Oregon Symphony in their estate plans. For more information, please contact the Development Office at 503-416-6325. Anonymous (13) Markus Albert Kirby & Amy Allen Margaret A. Apel Margaret & Scott Arighi Laurel Bardelson+ Lynda R. Bell Steve & Patt Bilow Leola J. Bowerman+ Dean Boyd & Susan Wickizer John & Yvonne Branchflower Steve & Kristine Brey Ellen E. Bussing§ Craig & Karen Butler Elaine Calder & William J. Bennett Carl & Connie Clark Debi Coleman Terry & Peggy Crawford Dr. Jim Darke Niel B. DePonte‡ Ginette DePreist Jess Dishman Allen L. Dobbins William Dolan & Suzanne Bromschwig Clarke Donelson Gerard & Sandra Drummond Bill* & Karen Early George Fabel Louise P. Feldman Harry & Gladys Flesher Mark Gardiner & Mary Nolan Robyn Gastineau* Jim & Karen Halliday Susan Halton Betsy & Gregory Hatton Diane M. Herrmann Henry M. Hieronimus Rick* & Veronica Hinkes Renée* & Irwin Holzman Donna Howard Beth & Jerry* Hulsman Judy & Hank Hummelt Anne & Charles Jochim Dennis Johnson & Steven Smith Karen & Keith Johnson Richard & Ruth Keller Richard Kaiser & Virginia Shipman Georgia A. Koehler Sally & Tom Kuhns Kyle & Marcia Lambert Wayne & Carolyn Landsverk Barbara A. Lee Cary & Dorothy Lewis Ardath E. Lilleland A. G. Lindstrand Lynn & Jack Loacker

Michele Mass & Jim Edwards Dr. Louis & Judy McCraw Roger & Pearl McDonald Stephanie McDougal+ Duane & Barbara McDougall Edward+ & June McLean Sheila McMahon Karen McNamee Ruben J. & Elizabeth Menashe Robert+ & Violet Metzler Geri & Bruce F.+ Miller Mia Hall Miller Richard Patrick Mitchell Carol N. Morgan Christi R. Newton Ann H. Nicholas Roger N.+ & Joyce M. Olson Marianne Ott Jane S. Partridge Janice E. Phillips Janet Plummer§ & Don Rushmer Arnold S. Polk Harold & Jane Pollin David Rabin Tom & Norma Rankin Richard & Mary Raub Barbara Perron Reader Ed Reeves & Bill Fish Mary & Mike Riley Sherry Robinson & Steve Shanklin Peter Rodda & Vincenza Scarpaci Betty Roren Walt Rose Betsy Russell William C. Scott Scott Showalter§ V. L. Smith & J. E. Harman George & Molly Spencer Anne Stevenson Hank Swigert Diane Syrcle & Susan Leo Herman Taylor & Leslye Epstein Bruce & Judy Thesenga Mike & Diana Thomas Leslie & Scott Tuomi Linda & Stephen VanHaverbeke Randall Vemer John & Frances von Schlegell Les Vuylsteke Joella B. Werlin Jack* & Ginny Wilborn Gary Nelson Wilkins Roger & Kathleen Wolcott Nancy Wolff & E. David Booth + in memorium

The Arts Card gets you 2-for-1 tickets to hundreds of performances & events.

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1408 SW 6th Avenue, Portland 97201 | 503.484.1099 RESERVATIONS AT NELCENTRO.COM | 503-228-1353 45

OUR SUPPORTERS Corporate Partners The Oregon Symphony thanks these corporations for their generous contributions received in the 2018/19 Season (July 1, 2018–June 30, 2019). TR ANS FO RMATI ONAL $10 0 , 0 0 0 A ND A B OV E

VIR T U O S O S O CIE T Y $5 0 , 0 0 0 – $ 9 9,9 9 9

O P U S S O CIE T Y $ 2 5 , 0 0 0 – $ 49,9 9 9

M OZ AR T S O CIE T Y $10 , 0 0 0 – $ 24 ,9 9 9











Foundation and Government Support The Oregon Symphony thanks these organizations for their generous contributions received in the 2018/19 Season (July 1, 2018–June 30, 2019). TR ANS FO RMATI ONAL $10 0 , 0 0 0 A ND A B OV E




VIR T U O S O S O CIE T Y $5 0 , 0 0 0 – $ 9 9,9 9 9

O P U S S O CIE T Y $ 2 5 , 0 0 0 – $ 49,9 9 9

M OZ AR T S O CIE T Y $10 , 0 0 0 – $ 24 ,9 9 9















S ILVE R B ATON $ 6 , 0 0 0 – $ 9,9 9 9



B R ONZ E B ATON $ 4 , 0 0 0 – $5 ,9 9 9



CON CE R TO $1, 0 0 0 – $ 2 , 49 9


MASON CHARITABLE TRUST | 503-228-1353 47



When asked how to define jazz, Louis Armstrong famously stated, “IF YOU HAVE TO ASK, YOU’LL NEVER KNOW.”


NEW ORLEANS WAS THE BIRTHPLACE OF JAZZ and, not surprisingly, hometown to several legends such as Buddy Bolden, King Oliver, Louis Armstrong, and Jelly Roll Morton.


IMPROVISATION, OR COMPOSING MUSIC ON THE SPOT, IS A HALLMARK OF JAZZ. While it is spontaneous creation, it is also impossible without a solid theoretical knowledge of music, the endless practice of scales, and experience.


With the national and global spread of jazz, the improvisational nature of the art form fueled derivative and fusion genres. SWING, BIG BAND, BEBOP, SMOOTH JAZZ, AND LATIN JAZZ ARE JUST A FEW EXAMPLES OF MUSICAL STYLES THAT EVOLVED FROM OR WERE INFLUENCED BY JAZZ.


IN 1949, LOUIS ARMSTRONG BECAME THE FIRST JAZZ MUSICIAN TO BE FEATURED ON THE COVER OF TIME MAGAZINE. Other jazz stars to be featured include Dave Brubeck in 1954, Duke Ellington in 1956, Thelonious Monk in 1964, and Wynton Marsalis in 1990.


IN 2005, GUERNSEY’S AUCTION HOUSE IN NEW YORK HOSTED THE FIRST AUCTION DEDICATED SOLELY TO JAZZ ARTIFACTS. Among the items on the block were Charlie Parker’s go-to horn in the 1950s (a King alto saxophone, with mother-of-pearl keys), John Coltrane’s original sheet-music sketches for A Love Supreme, Thelonious Monk’s tailored jacket, and a gown worn by Ella Fitzgerald.


THE 1920S ARE CONSIDERED TO BE THE “JAZZ AGE,” THANKS TO THE EXPLOSION OF THE GENRE AND ACCOMPANYING DANCE STYLES. Prohibition, the Harlem Renaissance, and radio concerts fueled the period of cultural shift.


JAZZ, WHICH EMERGED FROM AFRICAN AMERICAN COMMUNITIES, IS ONE OF THE MOST HYBRID FORMS OF MUSIC. The genre has roots in African rhythms, blues, ragtime, and even European classical music.



MANY JAZZ STARS STARTED THEIR CAREERS AT THE FAMOUS APOLLO THEATER IN HARLEM, NEW YORK. The club’s Amateur Night began in 1934 and was broadcast live on the radio. At 15 years old, Ella Fitzgerald was one of the first winners of the evening contest.

THE SLANG OF THE JAZZ WORLD IS CALLED “JIVE.” Cab Calloway’s Hepster’s Dictionary, published in 1938, defined 200 words of the jive vernacular and is believed to be the first dictionary written by an African American. . | 503-228-1353 49


Emily Cole Oregon Symphony violin

Emily Cole at Jo Bar & Rotisserie on nw 23rd Avenue, one of her favorite places to go on a night out. Photo by Christian Rudman.


Seat tle native and powerhouse violinist Emily Cole joined the Oregon Symphony in 2011. An avid chamber musician, she performs as a member of Mousai Remix, a quartet of female string musicians who also play with the Symphony, and appears locally as a member of 45th Parallel Universe. During the summer months, Cole has performed with the Oregon Bach Festival, the Seattle Opera, and the Apollo Music Festival. A former faculty member at Lewis & Clark, she also coaches chamber musicians with Portland Summer Ensembles and Music Northwest in Seattle. Her education includes a bachelor’s in music from University of Texas at Austin (Go Longhorns!), a master’s from the University of North Texas, and additional study under former Seattle Symphony Concertmaster Ilkka Talvi. When and why did you start playing the violin? As a kid, I loved the opening sequence of Disney’s Fantasia, which features a shadowy Stokowski conducting Bach’s Toccata and Fugue. I particularly liked the part in the music where the violin section played their fast notes all together. My mom is a violinist, and she would set me up with her violin under my chin so I could mime the orchestra onscreen! Even though I didn’t know what I was doing, it was terrifically fun. I started proper lessons a few years later, at age eight. Is anyone in your family aside from your mother musical? What are their musical interests and abilities? There are a lot of musicians in my family. Several are orchestral musicians; some are vocalists; some play jazz; some write music. As a child, I thought everyone’s parents played an instrument. What advice do you have for someone wanting to follow in your footsteps? To have a shot at winning an orchestral audition, you must be very focused in your training. There’s a lot of emphasis on the “end goal,” but once you reach that goal, new challenges arise. Taking care of yourself physically and mentally, understanding and maneuvering through

the ins-and-outs of the industry, and maintaining a work-life balance are all vital to protecting the longevity of your career. Developing a holistic approach to your musical livelihood might feel counterintuitive when your training is very single-minded, but it’s essential if you don’t want to burnout. What was the first tune you learned? I’m sure I started with Hot Cross Buns on the black keys of the piano. It’s probably the only piano piece I can still play. If you had not become a professional musician, what do you imagine you would you be? I’d like to have studied physical therapy or some other modality that helps people recover from injury and manage pain. What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given about anything? Several years ago, when I found myself in a place of intense self-doubt, a friend pointed me toward The Four Agreements, a book of Toltec wisdom by Don Miguel Ruiz. The agreements are: 1. Be impeccable with your word. 2. Don’t take anything personally. 3. Don’t make assumptions. 4. Always do your best. I draw on these principles every day. Does your mind ever wander when you play onstage? Often! If I’m sitting near the front of the stage, I find myself watching audience members out of the corner of my eye. I like to see how people respond to the music. Whenever we perform Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2, I always see a few people wiping away tears. At the end of Respighi’s Pines of Rome or Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, people leap to their feet. I love watching the “superfans” if we’re playing with a popular singer or band, and performing for an audience of kids is always quite entertaining! Which famous musicians do you admire? Why? We’re fortunate to have many wellknown soloists come to perform with the Oregon Symphony. I’ve admired some of

them – Emanuel Ax, Gil Shaham, Pinchas Zuckerman – since childhood. Having to be in absolute top form night after night, compounded with the stresses of life on the road, must be immense pressure. Sometimes I’ll hear them woodshedding a passage very slowly in their dressing room or at the piano backstage during the orchestra break. It’s a good reminder that instrumental mastery is a daily devotion, no matter how accomplished you are in your career. What are your fondest musical memories? The Oregon Symphony’s performance at Carnegie Hall’s Spring for Music Festival in 2011 was extraordinary. So many people came from Portland to attend that concert, and I remember walking out onstage and seeing them waving their green “Spring for Music” handkerchiefs. I was fairly new to the orchestra at the time, but I had a powerful sense of what a proud moment it was for the organization, as well as for the city. How do you handle mistakes during a performance? I have to let them go in the moment, but I file them away for later when I can use them to improve. Do you get nervous before a performance? Do you have any pre-show rituals? I’ve been told I look very calm when I perform, but I can get quite nervous. My secret’s out! The best thing I can do to manage nerves it to be as prepared as I possibly can. Artslandia’s theme for the 2019–20 season is A Night Out. Describe for our readers your perfect night out. For me, a night out often begins postconcert when many people have already had their night out! Dessert or a glass of wine after a performance is very satisfying (maybe even pasta or a burger if the music was especially tough). The most important element, though, is good company. . | 503-228-1353 51

o te




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ASK URSULA THE USHER She’s not the sweetest usher in town (for which competition is fierce), but she knows her stuff.

Greetings, Artslandians.

Email your questions to



The lines to use the restroom at intermission can be so long! It just doesn’t seem possible to take care of business and get back to my seat in time for the start of the second act. What advice do you have for navigating the situation? Is it OK to duck out of the first act a few minutes early to get a head start on the crowds? – When You’ve Got to Go… A


While my devotion to propriety nearly precludes the discussion of bodily functions, the mere suggestion of leaving your seat before the curtain falls gives me fits. So, upon my soapbox I go. This aspect of crowd management is high on the minds of ushers far and wide. I’ve said it once, and you’d better believe I’ll say it a million times: a joy of live performing art is that it’s a shared experience. Hence specific considerations come into play. If it were up to me, I’d deliver personal reminders of this as I hand over the magnificent playbill. (I’d also seize your cell phone at that time, but alas, I’m at the leading edge of that frontier.) So, When You’ve Got to Go…, for the love of Pete, do not plan to leave your seat while the performers are onstage! If you are a child at a production of children’s theater, then, by all means, answer the call of nature as it beckons. If you have a condition that makes forgoing the facilities for 90ish-minutes challenging, my lovely compatriots in the box office are always happy to assist with accommodations. Otherwise,

I’m Portland’s foremost and awardwinning expert in propriety, crowd management, security, and patron services administration. I’m Ursula the Usher. Yes, that’s right. What’d you think? That ushers just stand around handing out the playbills and pointing to seats? You don’t even know the things we do to keep you safe and comfortable. Ushers are the unsung heroes of the performing arts. .

accept that the experience will entail sitting quietly and reasonably still between the rise and fall of the curtain. Now, stepping down off my soapbox, I’ll address the rest of your query. Indeed, I do have advice for navigating the situation. First and foremost, I’ll tell you the same thing I tell my five children, 14 grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren: Relieve yourself before you take your seat. Period. Very simple.

2019 - 20 season JUSTICE (JUST US) connecting Portland to the international movement of restorative justice and forgiveness-based healing, through new chamber music

“More than ever, Portland composers and audiences really do fear no music.” - The Oregonian, 2019

Fortunately, we of Portland and its environs are blessed with a bounty of new and recently renovated venues with ample facilities for all who seek intermission relief. A long queue may seem like cause for concern, but more often than not, traffic will flow briskly enough for a timely return to your seat. Know that we ushers closely monitor this aspect of crowd management. Allow me to share, for purposes of education and because I know everything, that Broadway’s bathroom problem is well-documented amongst ushers. In the Big Apple, turn-of-the-century venues have not kept pace with changing liquid intake trends and the simplifying of female garments. Historical landmark designations complicate building updates. It’s quite a conundrum. But I digress, and now I’ve grown tired of your question and all this potty talk. To review, go before you sit, trust in modern theater design, and rely on ushering magic. If you feel you must resort to a creative approach, identify a restroom just outside the theater and hotfoot it there during intermission. – Ursula the Usher | 503-228-1353 53


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Retirement living with the city as your backyard

Whatever the indulgence, seeing is believing. Parkview at Terwilliger Plaza invites you to see floorplans, ponder interior treatments, and soak up the splendor of what makes Parkview so special. Why wait? ■

Take a tour

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Find out about Charter Member privileges

503-808-7870 or

Parkview at Terwilliger Plaza is a not-for-profit continuing care retirement community for residents age 62+.