ACO2 2014 WA Tour ANZAC DAY CENTENARY CONCERT
ACO2 © PIERRE TOUSSAINT
Message from the General Manager We are immensely proud to present ACO2 under the direction of Helena Rathbone on this extensive tour of Western Australia. Since its formation in 2007, ACO2 has quickly grown into a chamber orchestra in its own right and has increasingly played a significant role in major programs presented by the ACO. In 2012 ACO2 gave the world premiere performance of Richard Tognetti’s ground-breaking surf-movie-and-live-music spectacular The Reef on a huge tour which encompassed the northwest of Australia, from Darwin through to Perth. In 2013, ACO2 toured regional centres in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland and performed again under Richard’s direction on an 11-concert national tour which took in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Newcastle, Perth and Sydney. Tonight’s program celebrates the memory of ANZAC Day, which this year marks its centenary. The program includes music by Australian composers Peter Sculthorpe and Fredrick Septimus Kelly. Kelly’s touching Elegy was actually written in 1915 in his tent at Gallipoli. The work is a tribute to remarkable poet and fallen soldier Rupert Brooke. The concert also offers an opportunity to hear the superb 1759 Guadagnini violin which is on loan to Helena Rathbone, courtesy of the Commonwealth Bank.
Timothy Calnin General Manager Australian Chamber Orchestra
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Partner Message Wesfarmersâ€™ association with the Australian Chamber Orchestra goes back a long way. Sixteen years after we first worked together to bring this wonderful orchestra to Perth on a regular basis, we are now delighted to be able to help the ACO reach out into our regional communities in Western Australia and beyond. On this tour, ACO2 visits seven important centres across our state â€“ bringing these vibrant young musicians into concert halls as well as community halls. It will create once-in a lifetime opportunities for young people in these communities to hear and enjoy classes with some of this countryâ€™s most talented and inspirational artists. It is a privilege and a joy to support the tremendous work of the ACO as part of our commitment to making a broader contribution to the communities in which we live and work. We hope you enjoy this performance as much as we have enjoyed bringing it to you.
Richard Goyder Managing Director Wesfarmers
Program Helena Rathbone Director & Lead Violin ACO2 PETER SCULTHORPE Port Essington KELLY Elegy for String Orchestra ‘In Memoriam Rupert Brooke’ JS BACH Violin Concerto No.1 in A minor, BWV1041 INTERVAL CPE BACH String Symphony No.1 in G major CARTER Elegy for String Orchestra WALTON Sonata for Strings The concert will run for approximately 1.5 hours including a 20-minute interval. Albany Albany Entertainment Centre 5 April 8pm Bunbury Bunbury Regional Entertainment Centre 9 April 7.30pm Katanning Katanning Town Hall 4 April 8pm Mandurah Mandurah Performing Arts Centre 11 April 11am Margaret River Margaret River Cultural Centre 8 April 8pm Narrogin Narrogin Town Hall 3 April 8pm Perth Government House 13 April 4pm
This tour is made possible through the generosity of Janet Holmes à Court AC and Marc Besen AO & Eva Besen AO, Patrons of the ACO’s Education Program. 4
Program Notes Peter SCULTHORPE (b. Launceston 1929) Port Essington (Composed 1977) I. Prologue: The Bush II. Theme and Variations: The Settlement III. Phantasy: Unrest IV. Nocturnal: Estrangement V. Arietta: Farewell VI. Epilogue: The Bush The composer writes: Port Essington tells the story, in musical terms, of the attempted settlement of Port Essington on the northern coast of Australia. Two attempts were made: the first in 1824, later abandoned, and a second in 1838, abandoned in 1849. The port was, incidentally, the terminal point for Leichhardt’s overland expedition from Brisbane in 1845. It appears that the main reason for the abandonment of Port Essington was, simply, that those living there were unable to adapt to the peculiar condition of the land. The soldiers of the garrison, for instance, at all times wore uniforms appropriate to an English winter rather than to an endless Capricornian summer. For me, because my life is centred upon the idea of a culture that is appropriate to Australia, the story has a special importance. The music, broadly speaking, exists on two planes: a string orchestra represents the bush; and a string trio, playing what appears to be nineteenth-century drawing room music, represents the settlement. During the two opening sections of the work, the two planes co-exist in a not unharmonious manner, but, as the work progresses, the insistence of the music of the string orchestra brings about a withdrawal of the music played by the string trio. Following this withdrawal, the string trio makes a final statement, and the music is echoed by the string orchestra, suggesting that some kind of agreement could have been possible. The work is made up of six sections played without breaks. It should be mentioned that the theme heard in the Prologue is an adaptation of an Aboriginal melody ‘djilile’ (‘whistling-duck on a billabong’) from Arnhem Land, collected by Professor A.P. Elkin. This melody serves as a theme for the complete work, which is a double set of variations, one in my own manner and one in a nineteenth-century European manner. Port Essington was commissioned by Musica Viva Australia for the Australian Chamber Orchestra, who gave the premiere performance in Brisbane in August 1977. Peter Sculthorpe © 1977
Program Notes Frederick Septimus KELLY (b. Sydney 1881 – d. Beaucourt-sur-Ancre 1916) Elegy for Strings ‘In Memoriam Rupert Brooke’ (Composed 1915–16) Frederick Septimus ‘Cleg’ Kelly was one of those rare individuals who was, either by virtue or determination, graced with a remarkable combination of athleticism, musical talent, and by the accounts of those around him: rigorous discipline, intellect, and leadership. Born in Sydney, Kelly attended Sydney Grammar, Eton College, and Balliol College at Oxford, where he immersed himself in his passions of music and rowing. He was a member of England’s rowing team at the 1908 London Summer Olympics, and was awarded the Gold Medal in the Men’s Eights. As a student of composition and piano he studied in Frankfurt am Main, and in 1911 he made his professional debut with the Sydney Symphony in Sydney Town Hall. As a chamber musician he performed alongside collaborators including the great Pablo Casals. After Britain’s formal entry into World War I in 1914, Kelly volunteered to join the Royal Naval Division, it was in September of that year he met the poet Rupert Brooke, with whom he served in active duty, sailing toward the Dardanelles. They developed a deep and close friendship. It was only a matter of months before Rupert Brooke would die from a blood infection in April 1915, before reaching Gallipoli. Kelly fought in the Gallipoli campaign in May, but was wounded in June. It was during his recovery that he completed his Elegy for Rupert. Later that month he was promoted to Lieutenant and in July returned to Gallipoli. Kelly’s bravery was especially notable. He was one of the three officers who remained at the observation post in the front trenches during the final evacuation, and one of the last men to leave the peninsula in January 1916. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his efforts in the campaign. The English pianist Leonard Borwick included the following in a Balliol College history entry on his friend ‘Cleg’ Kelly: ‘No record, however slight, of his musical life may leave unnoticed the Elegy for String Orchestra written in 1915 and dedicated to the memory of his friend Rupert Brooke. Here he is the poet of deep imagining, finding and utterance in music which, linked by its modal inflections to the Past, is no mere expression of personal grief or loss, but, a symbol, rather, of the continuity of life, giving thoughts of Eternity – and as such, for all who knew and loved ‘Cleg’ Kelly, his own most fitting and perfect memorial.’ The Elegy was first performed in 1916 at a Memorial Concert to Rupert Brooke, conducted by Frank Bridge. Alan J. Benson © 2014 Fragment: I strayed about the deck, an hour tonight I strayed about the deck, an hour, to-night Under a cloudy moonless sky; and peeped In at the windows, watched my friends at table, Or playing cards, or standing in the doorway, Or coming out into the darkness. Still No one could see me. I would have thought of them --Heedless, within a week of battle--in pity, Pride in their strength and in the weight and firmness And link’d beauty of bodies, and pity that 6
This gay machine of splendour ‘ld soon be broken, Thought little of, pashed, scattered. . . Only, always, I could but see them---against the lamplight--pass Like coloured shadows, thinner than filmy glass, Slight bubbles, fainter than the wave’s faint light, That broke to phosphorous out in the night, Perishing things and strange ghosts--soon to die To other ghosts--this one, or that, or I. Rupert Brooke, April 1915.
Program Notes Johann Sebastian BACH (b. Eisenach 1685 – d. Leipzig 1750) Violin Concerto in A minor, BWV 1041 (Composed c. 1730) I. Allegro II. Andante III. Allegro assai From December 1717 to April 1723, Bach was engaged in the north German town of Cöthen as Kapellmeister and Director of the Royal Chamber Music. Both the court and the principality had adopted the Reformed Calvinistic faith, and so Lutheran church music, which occupied Bach heavily in his prior and succeeding posts at Weimar and Leipzig, gave way to instrumental music as the Kappellmeister’s principal activity. From this time come the six Brandenburg concertos, the E major and A minor violin concertos, and the A minor concerto for two violins. Bach wrote many more concertos during this time; which have been lost in their original version, but some of which exist through his Leipzig arrangements for one or more harpsichords. In this conventionally three movement, Venetian-type concerto, the central slow movement is flanked by two fast outer movements. In these, between the sharply defined orchestral ritornellos (those passages which return, but each time in a different key) come the solo moments – opportunities not only for virtuosic display, but presentation of contrasting material and dialogue between soloist and orchestra. The firm, opening Allegro, with its diversity of articulation and rhythmic character, contrasts with the flowing nature of the closing Allegro assai section. And, maintaining a close relationship with the E major concerto, the central movement is defined by its distinctive, motif-driven bass line and the free-flowing invention of the solo line that weaves on top of it. The concerto is brought to its close with a ritornello, reminiscent of Italianite style. ACO © 2014
Program Notes Carl Philipp Emanuel BACH (b. Weimar 1714 – d. Hamburg 1788) String Symphony No.1 in G major, Wq.182 (Composed 1773) I. Allegro di molto II. Poco adagio – III. Presto In 1768, Carl Philip Emanuel Bach, second son of Johann Sebastian Bach, finally terminated his 30-year appointment as court harpsichordist to Prussia’s Frederick the Great in Berlin. Famous throughout Europe as a keyboardist and teacher, he moved to Hamburg, where he succeeded his godfather Telemann in the leading position of Kantor at the Johanneum. Hamburg suited Emanuel very well after decades confined in the stiff atmosphere of the Prussian court. Although he was busy (duties included about 200 performances a year, and that was only the beginning of it) he was a natural administrator and revelled in the company of the artistic and intellectual types were drawn to free-thinking Hamburg. Among his casual visitors was the Imperial Ambassador to Berlin, Baron Gottfried van Swieten, who travelled to Hamburg just to meet Emanuel. Swieten is one of those under-appreciated figures in musical history. A keen amateur and true patron of the arts, he is also the dedicatee of Beethoven’s first symphony and the librettist (after Milton) of Haydn’s The Creation. It was he who commissioned Mozart to re-orchestrate Handel’s Messiah. For him, Emanuel wrote a set of string symphonies, now catalogued as Wq.182. Such ‘daring flow of ideas’, ‘variety and novelty’ and ‘peculiar, high-spirited character’ are in abundance in the first of these six string symphonies. A fractured, moody brilliance is achieved through dynamic contrasts and unisons, an increased verticality of texture (as opposed to the seamless, horizontal counterpoint of his father’s music) and by surprising harmonic turns. Not exactly Baroque, neither do they fit into a Classical mould. They are unique, individual pieces that offer an intriguing glimpse of a noteworthy musical personality. Emanuel’s compositions were admired by musicians such as Mozart, Haydn and Neefe (one of Beethoven’s more influential teachers). His treatise on the art of playing the keyboard remains a seminal work. Adapted from a note by Meurig Bowen/K.P.Kemp © 2000/03
Program Notes Elliott CARTER (b. New York 1908 – d. New York 2012) Elegy for String Orchestra (Composed 1943, arranged for string orchestra 1952) Elliott Carter was one of the great, towering and prolific American composers of the 20th century, having combined elements of European modernism and American style into an aesthetic of intense rhythmic vitality and dramatic contrast. Born in New York in 1908, Carter recalled the days of World War I in the United States: ‘the Hudson River was full of English warships…I remember that very distinctly.’ And when the first War had ended, he and his father made a haunting trip to Europe, when Carter was just nine years of age. ‘It was absolutely devastating to me…because we not only went to see the famous battlefields of Verdun, but we also went to Germany, when the waiters stole food off the table when we ate. I remember that impressed me as a boy very much — this awful poverty that Germany was suffering from.’ Carter’s early years as a composer included study in Paris with the highly regarded Nadia Boulanger, whose teachings have made a significant contribution to American musical life and whose pupils also included Aaron Copland and Leonard Bernstein. ‘I arrived to study with Nadia Boulanger at the time when Hitler had the Reichstag fire — when he took over the government,’ Carter said. ‘Paris, throughout almost my entire three years, was filled with German refugees. It was a very tragic and terrible time.’ Carter himself recalled Boulanger as ‘very fussy, with an intense focus on the music itself. She felt that the [musical] notes, they must mean something and be important. Every Wednesday afternoon, we’d sing a Bach Cantata. We must have gone through a hundred cantatas while I was there studying.’ During World War II Carter worked for the Office of War Information in Maryland, and it was during that time that he composed his Elegy, originally for cello and piano, subsequently adapted for string quartet, and ultimately, the string orchestra version we hear in this program. The Elegy dates from period in Carter’s compositional life when he was writing in a distinctly ‘American’ style, and one can hear Boulanger’s influence in the gentle yet strict counterpoint reminiscent of Bach’s choral writing, with each musical line and note serving a purpose. Alan J. Benson © 2014
Program Notes William Walton (b. Oldham 1902 – d. Ischia 1983) Sonata for Strings (Composed 1972) Arranged by the composer from his String Quartet in A minor (1945–47) I. Allegro II. Presto III. Lento IV. Allegro molto Walton spent the Second World War working as a composer of film music. Propaganda films demanded most of his attention, but he also made time to score such classics as the 1942 Macbeth and the 1944 Henry V with Laurence Olivier. Unfortunately, Walton found that techniques he used in film were not automatically applicable to more abstract music, and when in 1945 he returned to work on a new String Quartet (his second), he found his task surprisingly hard going. In a letter of January that year he complained: ‘I’m in a suicidal struggle with four strings and I am making no headway whatever. Brick walls, slit trenches, Siegfried Lines bristle as never before. I’m afraid I’ve done film music for too long!’. Work on the Quartet eventually came to a standstill during the last months of the War, and it was only during peace time that Walton returned to complete it. He dedicated the Quartet in gratitude to Ernest Irving, one of the conductors who had worked on his wartime film scores, and it was first performed in May 1947. In 1970 Neville Marriner, director of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, unsuccessfully tried to get the elderly William Walton to write a new work for string orchestra. Walton’s stated 1956 plan to write ‘a Sonata for Strings, for no one in particular’ had been long forgotten. Facing a blank refusal from Walton, Marriner then suggested a less troublesome task, an orchestral arrangement of the 1947 String Quartet. To this the composer assented, aware however: ‘that critics and others will ask why I can’t write something new instead of rehashing an old 4tet – in fact, I’d like to know too. But I’m not going to!’ Marriner also asked him to shorten the first movement, but Walton was ambivalent. ‘I said I’d do that…but I’ve been through it time and time again, and I’ve found it impossible without its sounding castrated, had its stomach out, with hysterectomy thrown in.’ Nevertheless, he did manage to excise up to 33 bars of the original, slightly recasting what remained. He also found a repeat in the second movement ‘which is easily removed and is the better for it’. Writing earlier, Walton had commented that the new version might still ‘have a solo string quartet in it, as in the Introduction and Allegro of Elgar’. And it’s with this in mind that he started the Sonata for Strings, as the revision was to be called, exactly as in the quartet original, with four solo strings. Only later does the remainder of the string band enter, and thereafter solo strings continue to appear within the full string texture. The Sonata received its world premiere in Perth in March 1972 during an Australian tour by the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Adapted from a note © Graeme Skinner
ACO2 ÂŠ PIERRE TOUSSAINT
ACO2, the Australian Chamber Orchestra's precocious little sister, delivers the ACO's regional touring and education programs. ACO2 connects the next generation of talented young Australian musicians with the stars of the ACO, creating a combined ensemble with a fresh, energetic performance style. The young musicians have all participated in the ACO's Emerging Artist Program and many already play in the state symphony orchestras but choose to spend time experiencing the ACO's high-octane performance style. The best go on to tour nationally and internationally with the ACO and it is testament to the program's success that former ACO2 member Rebecca Chan has been appointed a member of the ACO. ACO2 commenced touring in 2007 and have visited over 60 regional centres in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Northern Territory and Western Australia. Guest stars have included Tim Freedman from The Whitlams, oud player Joseph Tawadros, recorder player Genevieve Lacey and violinists Pekka Kuusisto (Finland), Lara St. John (USA), Thomas Gould (UK) and Dale Barltrop (Canada/Australia). ACO2 performed in the Classical Destinations II television series screened worldwide and now released on CD and DVD by Sony. ACO2 runs workshops for school-aged students in regional and metropolitan areas. Thus the ACOâ€™s Education Program identifies, connects and mentors three generations of Australian string players, making the future very bright indeed. www.aco.com.au
Profile HELENA RATHBONE Director and Lead Violin
IMAGE © PAUL HENDERSON-KELLY
Helena Rathbone was appointed Principal Second Violin of the Australian Chamber Orchestra in 1994. Since then she has performed as soloist and Leader with the ACO in Australia and overseas. In 2006 Helena was appointed Director and Leader of the ACO’s regional touring ensemble, ACO2, which sources musicians from the ACO’s Emerging Artists Program. Helena studied with Dona Lee Croft and David Takeno in London and with Lorand Fenyves in Banff, Canada. Before moving to Australia, she was Principal Second Violin and soloist with the European Community Chamber Orchestra and regularly played with ensembles such as the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields. When not performing with the ACO, Helena has been leader of Ensemble 24, guest leader of the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and is a frequent tutor and chamber orchestra director at National Music Camps and with the Australian Youth Orchestra. She has appeared in the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, the Christchurch Arts Festival, the Sangat Festival in Mumbai and the Florestan Festival in Peasmarsh, Sussex. As a regular participant of the International Musicians Seminar at Prussia Cove (Cornwall), Helena played in the IMS tour of the UK in 2007. The group, led by Pekka Kuusisto, won the Royal Philharmonic Society Award for chamber music 2008. In November 2013, Helena appeared as guest-leader of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra for concerts and recordings in Europe, with the pianist Leif Ove Andsnes. Helena plays a 1759 Guadagnini violin loaned to her by the Commonwealth Bank.
Musicians on stage Violin Helena Rathbone (ACO) ACO2 Director and Lead Violin Aiko Goto (ACO) Christina Katsimbardis+ Elena Phatak Emily Sheppard* Jennen Ngiau-Keng+ Lachlan Oâ€™Donnell+ Peter Clark+ Thibaud Pavlovic-Hobba+ Zoe Freisberg* Viola Carol Cook^ William Clark+ Katie Yap* Cello Eve Silver+ Rebecca Proietto* Paul Zabrowarny+ Bass Josef Bisits+ * 2014 Emerging Artist + ACO Emerging Artist ^ Courtesy Lyric Opera of Chicago
Thank you The ACO would like to thank the supporters of ACO2’s WA Tour. In particular we thank our government and corporate partners, the trusts and foundations and the many generous patrons of our Emerging Artists and Education Programs who have made this tour possible. PRESENTING PARTNER
PATRONS – NATIONAL EDUCATION PROGRAM Janet Holmes à Court AC
Marc Besen AO & Eva Besen AO
TRUSTS AND FOUNDATIONS Holmes à Court Family Foundation
The Ross Trust
The Neilson Foundation
The ACO is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.
The ACO is supported by the NSW state government through Arts NSW.
VENUE PARTNERS Narrogin Town Hall
Katanning Town Hall
Bunbury Regional Entertainment Centre 14
Albany Entertainment Centre Mandurah Performing Arts Centre
Margaret River Cultural Centre Perth Government House
Emerging Artists & Education Patrons $10,000+ Mr Robert Albert AO & Mrs Libby Albert Australian Communities Foundation â€“ Ballandry Fund Daria & Michael Ball Steven Bardy & Andrew Patterson The Belalberi Foundation Guido & Michelle Belgiorno-Nettis Liz Cacciottolo & Walter Lewin John & Janet Calvert-Jones Carapiet Foundation Mark Carnegie Stephen & Jenny Charles Darin Cooper Family Daryl & Kate Dixon Geoff & Dawn Dixon Ian & Caroline Frazer Chris & Tony Froggatt Daniel & Helen Gauchat John Grill & Rosie Williams Catherine Holmes Ă Court-Mather Belinda Hutchinson AM Angus & Sarah James PJ Jopling QC Miss Nancy Kimpton Bruce & Jenny Lane Prudence MacLeod Alf Moufarrige Louise & Martyn Myer Foundation Bruce Neill Jennie & Ivor Orchard Alex & Pam Reisner Mark & Anne Robertson Margie Seale & David Hardy Tony Shepherd AO Beverley Smith John Taberner & Grant Lang The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP & Ms Lucy Turnbull AO John & Myriam Wylie E Xipell Anonymous (3)
Australian Chamber Orchestra Richard Tognetti AO Artistic Director and Lead Violin Timothy Calnin General Manager PO Box R21 Royal Exchange NSW 1225 www.aco.com.au ABN45001335182