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2 012 2 013 SEASON 58

6 Masterworks Concerts 40 Works of Music 90 Chorus Singers 78 Orchestra Players 18 Guest Artists 15 Hours of Music-Making 11 Exciting Performances

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2 01 2 2 01 3 SEASON 58

6 Masterworks Concerts 40 Works of Music 90 Chorus Singers 78 Orchestra Players 18 Guest Artists 15 Hours of Music-Making 11 Exciting Performances

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CONCERTS

Concert II: Beethoven & Brahms...........................................................................................................7 Concert III: Bang a Drum!.....................................................................................................................19 Concert IV: Fauré’s Requiem...............................................................................................................25 Concert V: Violin Virtuosity & La Mer................................................................................................35 Concert VI: Wagner’s Ring & Mozart’s Requiem.............................................................................. 44 THE HELENA SYMPHONY

Meet the Helena Symphony....................................................................................................................4 Helena Symphony Orchestra & Chorale............................................................................................28 Helena Symphony Donors....................................................................................................................52 The Helena Symphony is grateful to its Season Partners

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©2012. Wandering Albatross Photography

ALLAN R. SCOTT conductor “Maestro Scott is as intoxicating as you could wish and has that all-too-rare feeling of risk-taking spontaneity.” New Zealand National Radio

“Maestro Scott is on a mission to bring music to the people, and if his music is as infectious as he is, then it’s only a matter of time.” Independent record

Completing his first decade as Music Director of the Helena Symphony, Maestro Allan R. Scott has been noted as one of North America’s most dynamic young figures in symphonic music and opera. He is widely recognized for his innovative approach to programming, dynamic vision, and ability to elicit top-notch performances from musicians. As the subject of SYMPHONY Magazine’s article “Big Sounds, Big Dreams,” Maestro Scott was acknowledged for his “large orchestra view” noting, “under Scott’s leadership the quality of the orchestra’s playing has skyrocketed.” Dividing his time between residences in Helena and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the Philadelphia native also marks his eleventh season as Music Director of Pennsylvania’s 4

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Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony, which is recognized among the finest regional orchestras in the Philadelphia area. In addition, he also serves as the Principal Conductor of the Wilmington Ballet Company in Delaware, and Conductor in Residence & Visiting Artist at West Chester University in Pennsylvania. For the past two season, he has also served as a guest lecturer for The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Pre-Concert Conversations. Since 2003, Maestro Scott has served as Music Director of the Helena Symphony where audiences have increased over 400% and the annual budget tripled. Each summer with the Helena Symphony, Maestro Scott leads one of the nation’s largest summer performances with Symphony Under the Stars, attracting an audience of more than 12,000. Acknowledged by the Main Line Times for “splendidly realizing the awesome spiritual power of the score,” Maestro Scott has become most closely associated with the works of Gustav Mahler. He regularly appears throughout the world as guest conductor. Recently he appeared with the world renowned National Radio Orchestra of Romania in Bucharest and New Zealand’s Christchurch

Symphony Orchestra. This season he makes his debut with the National Opera of Bucharest in a production of Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro. Throughout the past twenty-five years, Maestro Scott has served as Music Director of Philadelphia’s Main Line Philomusica Orchestra & Chorus, Principal Conductor of Bluett Theatre, Music Director of the Rocky Mountain Youth Orchestra, and Artistic Director of Colorado’s New Artists Philharmonic where he was awarded the lifetime post of Conductor Laureate. After studying piano since the age of five and his conducting studies at the age of fifteen, Maestro Scott developed his artistry under the guidance of some of the most prolific conductors of our time including Seiji Ozawa, and Charles Dutoit. He further refined his craft with Luis Biava, Zdenék Macal, Sir David Willcocks, and Jorge Mester at renowned institutions, among them the Tanglewood Music Center, California Conducting Institute, The Keene Music Festival, Ogontz Music Festival, and the Conducting Institute of South Carolina. n

Maestro Scott is exclusively represented by Wade Artist Management (New York, NY).


breanne cepeda apprentice conductor

Beginning her second season as Apprentice Conductor of the Helena Symphony, Breanne Cepeda serves as cover conductor and studies with Maestro Scott. A Montana native, Ms. Cepeda recently graduated from Montana State University where she was the Assistant Conductor

of the MSU Symphony Orchestra & Chorus. On the podium her “energy and precision were readily apparent,” and she is “energetic and demanding, and it is clear that she knew precisely what she wanted, and was not going to be shy about demanding it from the orchestra.” (Opus Colorado, 2012). Currently, she is a graduate student at University of Denver’s Lamont School of Music. There, she serves as the Assistant Conductor of the Lamont Symphony Orchestra while she pursues a Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting. While attending MSU, Ms. Cepeda founded the Orchestra da Camera whose

ARTISTIC STAFF

Allan R. Scott, Music Director & Conductor vacant, Chorale Director Breanne Cepeda, Apprentice Conductor June Lee, Staff Accompanist

ARTISTIC ADMINISTRATION

Leatrice Lily, Director of Artistic Planning Scott Kall, Operations Manager Chelsey Hallsten, Orchestra Librarian Cathy Barker & Deanna Satre, Chorale Managers

SYMPHONY OFFICERS

Kathy Bramer, President Kori R. Dee, Vice President Denny Haywood, Treasurer Eleanor Parker, Esq., Secretary

HELENA SYMPHONY FOUNDATION Ross Cannon, Esq., President Joan Poston, Esq., Chair Thomas C. Morrison, Esq., Treasurer Peter Bogy, Esq., Treasurer Darien G. Scott, Secretary Helen Ballinger Mark Huber

purpose was to provide students with a greater depth of orchestra repertory and served as a community outreach ensemble. Dedicated to education, Ms. Cepeda served as President of Montana’s collegiate division of the National Association of Music Education. She has regularly contributed columns to the Cadenza, the Montana music education publication. Currently, she teaches undergraduate courses in conducting at the University of Denver. Ms. Cepeda’s future is promising as she “shows a great deal of intelligence and composure on the podium”(Opus Colorado). n

ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF

vacant, Executive Director Mary Williams, Finance Director John Coburn, Box Office Manager Edge Marketing + Design, Marketing & Graphic Art Anderson ZurMuehlen & Co. P.C., Accountants Darcie Conquergood, Bookkeeper Allen S. Lefohn, Staff Photographer

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Kathy Bramer, Chair Helen Ballinger, Honorary Ronald Baldwin Susan Brookhart, Ph.D. James Burkholder, Orchestra Representative Sisi Carroll Kori R. Dee Denny Haywood Barbara Howe Virginia Markell, Honorary Janet Kenny, Chorale Representative Eleanor Parker, Esq. Allan R. Scott, Ex Officio Darien G. Scott, Honorary Betsey War

JUNE LEE staff accompanist Joining the Artistic Staff of the Helena Symphony in 2007, Pianist June Lee received a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance with emphasis in accompanying and pedagogy from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington, and a Master of Music in piano performance at the University of Washington, as well as a Bachelor

of Music in vocal performance. As staff accompanist, Ms. Lee works with Maestro Scott accompanying guest artists in preparation for performance, performs piano and celeste with the Helena Symphony Orchestra, serves as accompanist for the Helena Symphony Chorale, and often serves as assistant conductor of the Chorale.

She held a staff accompanist position at Pacific Lutheran University, and an assistantship in vocal accompanying at University of Washington. After completing her degrees, she spent many years as a minister and missionary. Ms. Lee currently resides in Townsend, Montana, and maintains a studio, teaching piano and voice in Helena. n www.helenasymphony.org

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Brahms’ Requiem is performed in memory of

Joseph P. Mazurek 1948 -2012

Joseph P. Mazurek, former Montana attorney general, died Tuesday, August 28, 2012, at age 64. Joe Mazurek was the gold standard as a political leader, public servant and family man. He served his country, state, community and family with distinction. Joe attended the University of Montana where he served as ASUM President and participated in the ROTC program. After graduating and marrying Patty on June 13, 1970, he served his country as a 1st Lieutenant in the United States Army from 1970-1972. He then attended the University of Montana School of Law and directed the Montana Law Review as associate editor, graduating in 1975. He went on to practice with the Helena firm of Gough, Shanahan, Johnson & Waterman, PLLP, from 1975-1992. Continuing with his political interests, Joe was elected for three consecutive terms in the Montana state Senate where he served as Senate president and Judiciary Committee chairman. He was twice elected as Montana attorney general, a position he held from 1993-2000. Joe worked with the Crowley Fleck law firm after holding office until his retirement in 2008. Throughout his professional and political career, Joe was known for his integrity, honesty, and respect for ethics. He was a unifying leader and bridge-builder. As a point of pride for Joe, he worked to pass spending increases for K-12 and higher education while in the Senate, led the state’s involvement with the FBI to bring the Freemen standoff in eastern Montana to a

peaceful conclusion, secured Montana’s settlement against the tobacco companies, and argued successfully before the U.S. Supreme Court as attorney general. He was a commissioner of the National Uniform State Law Commission from 1984 and was designated a “life member.” Joe was known for his infectious enthusiasm for good work and honor in service. Joe was a long time supporter of the Helena Symphony. In addition to being a subscriber and donor, Joe was elected to the Board of Directors, and served as Chair of the Board and President of the Helena Symphony. He also served on the boards of directors for the Special Olympics of Montana, Big Brothers and Sisters of Helena, Helena Youth Resources and a number of other charitable organizations. Despite his numerous obligations and commitments outside his home, Joe always put his family first. An outdoor enthusiast, he enjoyed river trips, fishing, hunting, skiing, golfing, and hiking. He shared his love for the outdoors with his family. He guided his family with a simple adage to “work hard and make your family a good name” which will forever be observed and cherished. Joe was recognized for his exceptional accomplishments and service when he received the University of Montana Distinguished Alumni Award in 2010. Despite his own humility, he was praised as a man of distinction, honor, and decency. He was a gift to all those who had the privilege of knowing him. n

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Exergy Masterworks Concert II

beethoven AND Brahms

SATURDAY, 20 OCTOBER 2012 / 7:30PM / HELENA CIVIC CENTER Allan R. Scott, conducting ALEXANDRA COSTIN, piano Diana Mcvey, soprano brandon hendrickson, baritone

Casper College Collegiate Orchestra Patrick E.K. Patton, artistic director

Helena Symphony Orchestra & Chorale

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37 Ms. Costin, piano I. Allegro con brio II. Largo III. Rondo: Allegro

** Intermission **

BRAHMS Ein Deutches Requiem, Op. 37 Ms. McVey, soprano Mr. Hendrickson, baritone

Performed in memory of Joseph P. Mazurek

I. Selig sind, die da Leid tragen II. Denn alles Fleisch es ist wie Gras III. Herr, lehre doch mich IV. Wie lieblich sind deine Wohnungen V. Ihr habt nun Traurigkeit VI. Denn wir haben hie keine bleibende Statt VII. Selig sind die Toten

The use of photographic and recording equipment is strictly prohibited. • Latecomers will not be seated until an appropriate time in the concert. As a courtesy to the performers and fellow concert-goers, please turn off all cell phones and electronic devices prior to the beginning of the performance. www.helenasymphony.org

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ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37 Born: Bonn, Germany, 16 December 1770 Died: Vienna, Austria, 26 March 1827

Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 is scored for solo piano, two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons, two horns, two trumpets, timpani, and divided strings.

Duration: 35 minutes

parallel events / 1800 The White House is built and first inhabited by President John Adams A tie in the popular vote of Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr causes the House of Representatives to narrowly elected Jefferson the 3rd U.S. President U.S. Library of Congress is established Beethoven’s First Symphony premieres Friedrich Shiller writes the play Mary Stuart Abolitionist John Brown and U.S. President Millard Fillmore are born Worcestershire Sauce is created and sold 8

About the Composer Beethoven once described himself as someone “who did everything badly except compose music,” and yet he aroused intense personal devotion not only by his music, but by his personality, rough and ill-mannered, violent and wrong-headed though his actions often were. The nature of his personality and the fact he was virtually uneducated gave his musical utterance simplicity and a sincerity that are without parallel among the great composers. It is these qualities, combined with his strong sense of humanity and his inexhaustible power of striving for the ideal, that have earned him his unique place in affections of music-lovers of all types. Dedicating himself principally to composition from the early 1800s, Beethoven supported himself partly by public concerts, in which he presented his works and his skill as an improviser, and partly through dedication fees, sales of publications, and generous gifts from patrons. Determined to survive as a freelance musician, Beethoven eventually ended his career as a performer for full time composing due to the gradual onset of incurable deafness. Like his musical idol, Handel, Beethoven embodied his own musical era and at the same time contributed to the overall progression of music in technique and artistic form. Unlike Handel (and even Mozart) however, Beethoven did not have the luxury of speed and instantaneous perfection in his composing; he needed to make several drafts and revisions to most of his works. Certain pieces were often started, interrupted by other projects, and finished much later, at times several years later. Beethoven’s large output of works in all genres includes much occasional music, some of which is rather mediocre. In every genre, however, there are works of the greatest mastery, and the finest of them are unmatched in originality and expressiveness. His works include one opera (Fidelio), incidental music (Egmont, The Ruins of Athens), two ballets, nine symphonies, two mass settings (Mass in C and Missa

Solemnis), oratorios, including Christ on the Mount of Olives, and other choral works, five piano concertos, a violin concerto, string quartets and quintets, chamber music with winds, sonatas for violin and cello, piano trios, 32 piano sonatas, many variation sets for piano, works for solo and duet piano, dance sets, concert arias and songs, and canons. The Father of Romanticism What chiefly distinguishes Beethoven from his predecessors is his personal connection to his art. Recognized as the father of the Romantic Era in music (the period between 1820 and the early 1900s), Beethoven is best understood by gaining an insight to his works, particularly his symphonies, string quartets, and the Missa Solemnis. With Romanticism, the art and the artist are inseparable. This connection between art and artist is the driving force that most music has thrived on for the past two centuries, whereby music strives to attain the unattainable, the ideal, and the larger-than-life. This is not to suggest that Beethoven surrendered the structures and forms established by Haydn and Mozart; on the contrary, Beethoven is regarded as the link between the Classical Era of form and reason and the Romantic Era of emotion over reason and art for art’s sake. Beethoven’s own personal ideas, hopes, and faith, or lack of faith, are represented in his symphonic output. He wrestled with his own fate in Symphony No. 5; he strove to obtain ideal heroism in Symphony No. 3; and held true to the notion that the city of man can and should be equal to the city of God in Symphony No. 9. About the Work A few weeks before his twenty-second birthday, Beethoven moved to Vienna in 1792, where he would stay for the rest of his life. A year earlier, Mozart was buried in an unmarked grave. Beethoven considered Vienna the city of Mozart, and while there is no record that the two composers ever met, Beethoven paid homage to Mozart by composing a work based on a theme from a Mozart opera, and also performed one of Mozart’s piano concertos. A few years later in 1800 Beethoven planned a concert to include continued on page 10


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a Mozart symphony along with a newly composed piano concerto (his Piano Concerto No. 3); however, for reasons unknown, Beethoven performed one of his earlier piano concertos instead. Like Mozart, Beethoven wrote works to display his virtuosity at the keyboard and his skills as a composer, and soon he established himself as Vienna’s best pianist. After some revisions, the Piano Concerto No. 3 premiered on a concert (some three years after it was composed) that also featured the premiere of his Symphony No. 2 and his oratorio Christ on the Mount of Olives, in addition to a reprise of his Symphony No. 1 (not an uncommon amount of works or duration at the time). Much like his Second Symphony, the Piano Concerto No. 3 couples the spirit of Mozart with the gut-wrenching sounds of the “heroic” Beethoven. Also as with Mozart, Beethoven’s works allowed him to become more known as a composer than a performer, and in many ways it was the premiere of his Piano Concerto No. 3 that gave Beethoven his independence as a composer. The only one of his five piano concertos written in a minor key, the Piano Concerto No. 3 becomes the doorway that opens up to the sounds of his Symphonies No. 3 (Eroica) and 5 – the sounds that have defined him for centuries. Given the increasing symptoms of deafness since the late 1790s, the Concerto was also the last work which Beethoven composed for himself as soloist. Opening with an extensive introduction by the orchestra, the Concerto at first seems like a symphony as Beethoven almost seems to forget there is a piano soloist.

The introduction, however, is quintessential Beethoven – clear, simple, rhythmic energy, and memorable. Just as the first movement begins to develop the themes, Beethoven remembers to bring in the piano soloist. With three dramatic scales followed by a heroic statement of the principal theme (using double-fisted octaves), the piano finally enters and dominants the focus for the rest of the work. With a subtle stroke of uniqueness, he even begins the conclusion of the movement with a duet between the piano and the timpani until the movement triumphantly concludes. Set in the distant and in the unrelated key of E major, the intricate second movement is one of the most elegant slower movements he ever composed. Despite the extremely slow tempo, the movement spins a long, graceful melody that shows hints of the future sounds of Schumann and Chopin. One of the highlights of the movement is a magical duet between the flute and the bassoon while the piano creates a liquid-like undercurrent. With a touch of melancholy coupled with restrained reflection the second movement ends with a sense of time suspended. Returning to the original key of C minor, the third movement is a witty, driving finale with brief unaccompanied solo passages for the piano and furious, virtuosic passagework. Interjecting between the theme played by the solo piano and the energetic strings is a tender, charming section for clarinet and bassoon. As the work closes, a faster section (now in C major) races to the finish almost like a conclusion to a comedic opera. n

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guest artist

Alexandra Costin piano

“A reflexive artistic nature, Pianist Alexandra Costin belongs to the category of pianists that filters their emotional impulse through a bright intelligence,” proclaims a music critic. Born in Bucharest, Romania, Ms. Costin graduated from the

National University of Music in Bucharest, earned her Master’s degree at Baylor University, her Doctorate of Musical Art in piano performance from Boston University. Winner of national and international competitions, Ms. Costin made her debut at age 14, and since then has performed over 200 concerto performances. In 2008, Ms. Costin made her Carnegie Hall debut performing Grieg’s Piano Concerto with the New England Symphonic Ensemble led by John Rutter. She has appeared with some of the leading orchestras in the world, including most of the Romanian orchestras, the Symphony Orchestra of Maracaibo (Venezuela), National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan, Orquesta Sinfónica del Estado de México, Mitteldeutsche Kammerphilharmonie Schönebeck, Münchner Bachsolisten, Gewandhausmusikern

Leipzig of Germany, Orchestra Sinfonica di Pescara, I Solisti di Napoli, and Orchestra di Grosetto, and North Czech Philharmonic. In addition to her performances with orchestras, Ms. Costin has given recitals in her native country Romania as well as in Austria, Germany, France, Greece, and the United States. She has been invited to perform in the world renowned George Enescu Festival, Ebracher Musiksommer Festival in Germany, the Finca Festival in Spain, the Mozart Festival at Boston University, and the Les Amis de la Musique en Vendomois Festival de Piano in France. Alexandra Costin has made numerous recordings for radio and television. She has appeared in broadcast performances with the Radio Romania Symphonic Orchestra, and has recorded piano concertos by Saint-Saëns, Beethoven, Grieg, and Schumann. n

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ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

JOHANNES BRAHMS

Ein deutsches Requiem, Op. 45 (A German Requiem) Born: Hamburg, Germany, 7 May 1833 Died: Vienna, Austria, 3 April 1897

Brahms’ German Requiem is scored for piccolo, two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons, contrabassoon, four horns, two trumpets, three trombones, tuba, timpani, harps, optional organ, divided strings, mixed chorus, soprano and baritone solos.

Duration: 70 minutes

parallel events / 1868 U.S. President Andrew Johnson is impeached and later acquitted Southern states are readmitted to the United States U.S. Congress passes 14th Amendment to grant citizenship to freed slaves Ulysses S. Grant is elected 18th U.S. President Wagner’s opera Die Meistersinger premieres Monet paints The River Louisa May Alcott writes Little Women Russian Czar Nicholas II and musician Scott Joplin are born U.S. President James Buchanan and composer Gioacchino Rossini die First Memorial Day Typewriter and tape measure are patented 12

About the Composer After Beethoven left the world nine great symphonies, very few composers attempted to rise to the challenge of writing a symphony. As a result, most composers produced works that were less structured than a symphony and more programmatic, such as operas or tone poems. In the immediate post-Beethoven world, the majority of composers followed the leadership of opera composer Richard Wagner, who led the movement of a new German school of composing. More exotic instruments such as the tuba and English horn were used in the orchestra, the number of strings tripled, and the overall sound took on larger-than-life intensities. Inaugurated by the later works of Beethoven, the Romantic Period saw the production of works of art expressing the will, dreams, hopes, disappointments, fears, and emotions of the artist. The Romantic artist is inseparable from her art, where in the previous eras of Mozart and Haydn (Classical) or Bach and Handel (Baroque), artistic output was simply another occupation not prone to personal passions or influences. Johannes Brahms rejected this new way of thinking. Brahms embraced the more structured forms of the Classical era of Mozart, Haydn, and early Beethoven. Above all else, Brahms hated wearing his heart on his sleeve and tried to avoid using music as a means to paint pictures or tell stories. Yet in a sense Brahms was more of a Romantic than most of those who branded him an anti-Romanticist. Whether or not he acknowledged it, Brahms composed from personal experience, especially heartache. Like many Romantic artists, Brahms was plagued with what Beethoven called an “inner demon.” Beethoven lost his hearing; Tchaikovsky struggled as a homosexual with serious bouts of depression; and Robert Schumann went insane. Brahms suffered from

a more common and perhaps more painful demon – loneliness. Ironically and tragically, Brahms loved the wife of one of his greatest supporters and closest friends – the composer Robert Schumann. Clara Schumann happened to be one of the world’s finest pianists and the first major woman pianist. After Robert Schumann’s death in 1856, Brahms and Clara decided to go their separate ways, but their friendship remained the deepest and only emotional anchor Brahms ever knew. Artistically, the heartache and anguish sowed the seeds of several major compositions, many of which took him years to complete. As a craftsman, Brahms was a perfectionist who sought to refine every bar to a flawless finish. He offered advice to a fellow musician saying, “Go over it and over it again and again until there is not a bar you could improve on….Whether it is beautiful also is an entirely different matter, but perfect it must be.” Perhaps for this reason, Brahms, unlike Beethoven, did not undergo a steady pattern of evolution and progress in his works. Rather, Brahms seemed complete as an artist from the start. As a result, Brahms became the heir-apparent to Beethoven even before Brahms completed his first of only four symphonies. Brahms surpassed his contemporaries in his ability to control the intertwining melodic lines coupled with richly expressive harmonies. Yet all of this was framed in the methodical and structured styles of his immediate predecessors, like Beethoven, Mozart, and Haydn. Brahms’ imaginative skill to phrase a musical line with the seemingly perfect orchestral timbres and colors is unprecedented, even today. About the Work Brahms’ spirituality was intrinsically linked to his intellect and his artistry. In his popular Ein deutsches Requiem (German Requiem), Brahms does not deal with the soul of the departed that travels to be judged or saved by God; instead, Brahms reflects on the continued on page 14


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individuals left behind in this world mourning the dead. In fact, the liturgical text used in the Requiem is abandoned and substituted with the Beatitude, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” Upon reflection, Brahms was bothered by the title. “German” merely referred to the language that the work is sung in (as opposed to the conventional Latin). “I should like to leave out the word “German,” Brahms said. “And refer to instead to Humanity.” For Brahms addresses us, the listeners, not the dead, and a sacred, humanistic view permeates the work. In fact, Brahms refused to make references to Christianity (“Jesus” or “Christ” are never mentioned) or any redemption of the Lord. Avoiding the horrific images of Judgment Day used in the Roman Catholic funeral rite, Brahms arranges a poetic tapestry of hope that transcends any specific faith or religion. In stark contrast to the overwhelming sorrow of Mozart’s unfinished Requiem or the operatic wailing of the famous 19th century Requiems of Verdi and Berlioz, Brahms offers peace and hope. The restrained and lyrical German Requiem influenced future Requiems of Gabriel Fauré and Maurice Duruflé, and Brahms’ freedom with the text inspired Benjamin Britten’s haunting War Requiem. While uncertain, it is likely that the deaths of Robert Schumann (1856) and Brahms’ mother (1865) gave impetus to the German Requiem. He labored over the work for eleven years (1857-1868) and the German Requiem is Brahms’ longest work, becoming his magnum opus that ultimately premiered on Good Friday, 10 April 1868 at the Cathedral Church in Bremen, Germany. More importantly, the German Requiem is a candid and rare glimpse into Brahms’ heart where he expressed the universal longings of humankind, and an occasion to give comfort to the bereaved and for the rejoicing in the certainty of Paradise. Brahms’ hallmark of brilliant mastery of instrumental and choral textures, pacing, and dense harmonies embodies the German Requiem, resulting in a richness of sound that is without parallel. “It is a work of bold contrasts,” explains a Brahms’ scholar, “prone to erupt from its general tranquility

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in solemn, sometimes even stern pronouncements. You are comforted in the harmonic language and splendid orchestra of the late century, but the bitter truths of the human experience are established too, and with severity.” Brahms achieves magnificent colors of the work by careful balance and selection of instruments. In the first movement, the violins are left out, thereby darkening the orchestra palette. When the violins enter in the second movement, they enter muted and in close harmony, giving a reflective sense to the mournful text (“For all flesh is as grass”). The German Requiem is set in a seven movement arch with the music of the brightest comfort at its center. The second and sixth movements are the darkest (and longest). The third and fifth movements feature soloists in meditations, the baritone seeking hope, the soprano bestowing it. The gorgeous and well known chorus of tranquility, “How Lovely is thy Dwelling Place,” is nestled in the middle. As so often in Brahms’ music, the end and the beginning become one. The theme of the opening of “Blessed are they that mourn” is now set to “Blessed are the dead,” to convey blessings, first upon the living, and the dead – recognizing the soul of the departed as the chorus drifts away echoing the word “selig” (“blessed”). Almost at once, we are reminded of the mystery of faith, where death is overcome by the immortality of the spirit. During the same period that Brahms composed his Requiem for humankind, an American poet was writing a similar mediation on death after seeing the destruction from the Civil War. If Brahms was able to read English, he would have found a kindred spirit who shared the same heartbreak, understanding, hope, and consolation. hope, and consolation. n …the debris of all the slain soldiers of the war. They themselves were fully at rest, They suffered not, The living remained and suffered, The mother suffered, And the wife and the child And the musing comrade suffered.

– Walt Whitman


guest artist

diana mcvey soprano Making her debut with the Helena Symphony last season performing Mahler’s Symphony No. 8, versatile Soprano Diana McVey is an artist whose consummate skills as both a singer and an actress have made her highly visible in opera, oratorio and as a soloist with symphony orchestras. Noted for performances of “Violetta” in La Traviata and “Lucia” in Lucia Di Lammermoor, she has also performed leading roles with Opera Tampa, Opera Columbus, Lake George Opera Festival, Jacksonville Lyric Opera, Treasure Coast Opera, Opera Naples, Light Opera Oklahoma, Ocean State Lyric Opera, the Salt Marsh Opera Company, Boston Academy of Music, Rhode Island Philharmonic, and Opera Providence among others. In concert, Ms. McVey has appeared with the Florida West Coast Symphony, Pioneer Valley Symphony, Longwood Symphony, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Albany Symphony, New Bedford Symphony, Eastern Connecticut Symphony, Greater Bridgeport Symphony, and Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra, among others. In 2006, Ms. McVey made her Carnegie Hall debut performing Mozart’s Requiem and Coronation Mass, and traveled to Dubai, United Arab Emirates for a production of Carmen. In addition to several opera performances, Ms. McVey also performed Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Fauré’s Requiem, and the Four Last Songs by Richard Strauss. Upcoming engagements include a production of Die Zauberflöte with Opera Omaha, Mozart’s Requiem with the Missoula Symphony, a concert appearance with the New Bedford Symphony, Mahler Symphony No. 4 with the Pioneer Valley Symphony, and Le Nozze di Figaro with Florentine Opera. n

Ms. McVey appears courtesy of Wade Management (New York, NY).

guest artist

brandon hendrickson baritone Making his debut with the Helena Symphony Orchestra, Baritone Brandon Hendrickson appears in operas and concerts throughout the country. Opera News praised Mr. Hendrickson for his “beautiful baritone.” In the 201112 season, his engagements included performances in La Bohème, Dialogues of the Carmelites, Carmen, Gianni Schicchi, and Handel and Gretel. Mr. Hendrickson has performed with the Charleston Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Sounds of South Dakota, Pensacola Opera, Opéra Louisiane, and Dallas Opera. In concert, he has appeared with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, Spoletto Festival, Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony Orchestra, South Dakota Symphony Orchestra, Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra, Louisiana Sinfonietta, South Dakota Chorale, and Swiss Choral Society. An Iowa native, Mr. Hendrickson studied voice at Simpson College (Indianola, IA), and received his masters and doctoral degrees from Louisiana State University. In addition to his performance career, he also serves as professor of voice and opera at the University of South Dakota. n

Mr. Hendrickson appears courtesy of InterArts Management (New York, NY). www.helenasymphony.org

15


OVIDIU MARINESCU Special Solo Appearance byWorld-renowned Cellist Ovidiu Marinescu

FRIDAY, 11 JANUARY 2013

7:30PM / MYRNA LOY CENTER

After last season’s much celebrated performance, critically-acclaimed Cellist Ovidiu Marinescu returns for a special solo recital. Mr. Marinescu is considered one of the leading recording artists and cellists of our time. Experience his artistry in an intimate setting in a rare solo recital appearance! 16

Helena Symphony

•

406.442.1860


guest chorale

casper college collegiate chorale Patrick E.K. Patton, artistic director As the premiere performing vocal ensemble of Casper College (Casper, Wyoming), the Casper College Collegiate Chorale is a 40-voice ensemble that presents a fourconcert series presentation in addition to numerous performances throughout Casper and the state of Wyoming. The Chorale has performed numerous times with the Helena Symphony Orchestra & Chorale.

Led by the former Chorale Director of the Helena Symphony, Patrick E.K. Patton, the Casper College Collegiate Chorale presents “Music of the Masters” as well as “Music of the World” concerts, and hosts an annual Madrigal Feaste, combining a study of Renaissance music and lifestyle with a 21st century approach to politics, humor, and fun. The Collegiate Chorale is active

in the biennial All-State Music Educators State Convention, participating with other select collegiate choral ensembles in the state in a concert presentation at the All-State Opening Concert. As a guest ensemble, Dr. Patton prepares the Collegiate Chorale to perform with several Wyoming orchestras, including the Cheyenne Symphony and Wyoming Symphony. n

PATRICK E.K. PATTON artistic director Patrick E.K. Patton, artistic director, recently completed seven seasons as Chorale Director with the Helena Symphony Chorale. For over three decades, Dr. Patton has served as Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Casper College in Wyoming. Previously, he served as Chair of the department of music and currently conducts the Casper College Collegiate Chorale, Women’s and Men’s Choirs, and the

Contemporary Singers vocal jazz ensemble and teaches Voice. He directs the annual Casper College Madrigal Feast and serves as codirector of the Casper College Jazz Festival, and his choruses have performed on numerous occasions at national and regional conventions and festivals. Dr. Patton has made over 400 appearances nationally and internationally as guest conductor,

adjudicator, and workshop clinician, including performances at Lincoln Center in New York, European tours, festivals in London, Brazil, and Thailand. He holds the Doctor of Musical Arts and the Master of Music degrees in Choral Conducting from the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri in Kansas City, and received his Bachelor of Music in Education degree from the University of Wyoming. n

A Symphony of Sweetness! 42 N LAST CHANCE GULCH 442-1470

WWW.PARROTCHOCOLATE.COM

Focused on your investment needs

Proud Supporters of the Helena Community 1728 9th Avenue • Helena

406.442.2400 www.helenasymphony.org

17


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FAMILY TOGETHERNESS FAMILY TOGETHERNESS DOESN'T HAVE TO HAPPEN IN DOESN'T HAVE TO HAPPEN IN ONE ROOM. ONE WhenROOM. relatives visit, you will have the

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Exergy Masterworks Concert III

Bang a drum!

SATURDAY, 26 JANUARY 2013 / 7:30PM / HELENA CIVIC CENTER Allan R. Scott, conducting LYNN VARTAN, percussion

Helena Symphony Orchestra

SCHWANTNER Percussion Concerto+ Ms. Vartan, percussion I. Con forza II. In memoriam: Misterioso III. Ritmico con brio

** Intermission **

BARTÓK Concerto for Orchestra+ I. Introduction: Andante non troppo – Allegro vivace II. Game of the Pairs: Allegretto scherzando III. Elegy: Andante non troppo IV. Interrupted Intermezzo: Allegretto V. Finale: Presto

+ = Premiere performance by the Helena Symphony.

The use of photographic and recording equipment is strictly prohibited. • Latecomers will not be seated until an appropriate time in the concert. As a courtesy to the performers and fellow concert-goers, please turn off all cell phones and electronic devices prior to the beginning of the performance. www.helenasymphony.org

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ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

JOSEPH SCHWANTNER Percussion Concerto

Born: Chicago, Illinois, 2 March 1943 Living: New York City, New York

Schwantner’s Percussion Concerto is composed for piccolo, three flutes, two oboes, English horn, two clarinets, bass clarinet, two bassoons, contrabassoon, four horns, three trumpets, three trombones, tuba, piano, harp, timpani, bass drums, triangles, suspended cymbals, tomtoms, tam-tam, xylophone, glockenspiel, vibraphones, amplified marimba, crotales, timbales, bongos, break drum, anvils, water gong, bundle of twigs, Japanese wind chimes, shekere, and several Almglocken (herd bells), and divided strings.

Duration: 30 minutes

parallel events / 1995 Bombing in Oklahoma City O.J. Simpson is acquitted in murder trial Baseball strike ends after 232 days 342 snow geese die at Berkely Pit in Butte, MT

The Houston Post closes after 116 years Guys & Dolls closes after 1,143 performances Actor Dean Martin, baseball legend Mickey Mantle, Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy (at age 104), former Chief Justice Warren Burger, and actresses Lana Turner and Eva Gabor die 20

For nearly four minutes, the audience in Lincoln Center stood and cheered a composition’s world premiere: not a standard response in contemporary musical life. At least some of the enthusiasm for Joseph Schwantner’s half-hour Percussion Concerto could be attributed to the fact that the composition had none of the medicinal quality audiences have long associated with new music…There was always enough sonic inventiveness to keep the ears busy. – The New York Times (1995) Trained at the Chicago Conservatory and Northwestern University, Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer Joseph Schwantner is considered one of the most prolific and popular composers today. Marked by numerous distinctions and awards, Schwantner has won three BMI Student Composer Awards in his early career, and since has won the Bearns Prize, a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, two Grammy Award nominations, and the Pulitzer Prize in 1979. Schwantner has been commissioned by many of the leading orchestras in the United States, including the New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, among many others. In addition, he has served on the faculties of The Juilliard School, Eastman School of Music, and Yale University. As one of the most performed works of the past decade, Schwantner’s Percussion Concerto was commissioned by the New York Philharmonic in celebration of the Philharmonic’s 150th anniversary. The Percussion Concerto exemplifies Schwantner’s hallmark sounds, such

as the implementation of luminous color and fluctuating rhythms. The Percussion Concerto has some of the most accessible, thrilling, unique, dramatic colors. Schwantner biographer Cynthia Jo Folio summed up his music, explaining that “it is in the areas of timbre and texture that many of Schwantner’s most distinctive stylistic traits are found… especially his fondness for sounds which hang in the air.” While there are a handful of percussion concertos, most are composed for a single instrument, particularly the marimba. Schwantner innovatively uses an array of percussion instruments, from the conventional, such as bass drum, marimba, bongos, to the bizarre and exotic, such as shekere (an African instrument), Japanese wind chimes, anvil, Alpine herd bells, and water gong. Schwantner also has the percussion soloist performing in two areas – one behind the orchestra where the percussion section plays, and one in front of the orchestra where a soloist traditionally performs. So the soloist moves back and forth between the two locations during the three movement work. The composer gives an introduction to the Percussion Concerto: The Percussion Concerto, cast in a three-movement arch-like design, opens with the soloist stationed near the other percussionists. A collaborative relationship develops between the soloist and his/her percussion colleagues in an extended percussion ensemble that also includes piano and harp. The soloist, forcefully and propulsively, articulates the primary musical materials with a battery of timbaletas, a pair of bongos, amplified marimba, xylophone, and a two-octave set of crotales. The marimba and drums are most prominently featured in the first movement. Throughout the second movement,


“In Memoriam,” a slow, dark-hued elegy, the soloist is placed center stage while the other percussionists remain silent. The soloist employs a vibraphone (played both with mallets and a contrabass bow), a rack of nine Almglocken (pitched Alpine herd bells), a high-octave set of crotales (played with beaters and with bow), two triangles, two cymbals, a water gong (a tam-tam lowered into a large kettledrum filled with water), a concert bass drum, and a tenor drum. Two principal ideas appear: a pair of recurrent ringing sonorities played on the vibraphone, and an insistent “heartbeat” motif articulated on the bass drum. The second movement leads directly into the fast and rhythmic third movement, which begins with an improvisatory section for the soloist. While continuing to improvise, the soloist walks back to his/her initial performance position of the first movement. As in that movement, the amplified marimba is again prominently

featured, but here the soloist plays angular and strongly accented gestures in four-mallet block voicings. The final section, drawn from the drum motifs of Movement I, proceeds to a high-energy cadenza (unaccompanied section for the soloist) and conclusion. The effect of the diverse array of percussion instruments and position of the instruments on stage not only allows the sounds to “hang in the air,” but creates sounds, colors, and textures that are ethereal at times as well as explosive. From the other-worldly sounds of the water gong and a string bow sliding over a vibraphone and crotales (small pitched cymbals), to the evocative clang of the Alpine herd bells and the sheer power of the bass drum, the Percussion Concerto captivates and transports the audience in a way that only the sounds percussion can – and the magic is that Schwantner does it with grace and passion. n

guest artist

lynn vartan percussionist An international performer and educator, Percussionist Lynn Vartan returns to perform with the Helena Symphony after her wonderfully received performance of Rosauro’s Marimba Concerto in 2009. Recognized for her dynamic athleticism and exciting energy on stage, Ms. Vartan has appeared on the Los Angeles Philharmonic Green Umbrella Series, the Different Trains Series, at Montana State University, the Hanoi Conservatory, Cornell University, with the Sierra Wind Symphony, at the World Trade Expo in Seim Reap, Cambodia. She is regularly presented on the Music at the Court series in Pasadena, California, where she produces her own solo percussion concerts. An advocate for diversity in music. In addition to her position at SUU, Dr Vartan is the percussionist for Southwest Chamber Music, the violin-percussion duo 61/4 which she founded with Shalini Vijayan, and the Exacta duo she formed with Tambuco’s Miguel Gonzalez. As a new music percussionist Ms. Vartan has worked with Michael Colgrass, Vinny Golia, Arthur Jarvinen, Ursula Oppens, Joan Tower, Glen Velez, Xtet, James Newton, Chinary Ung, the Hilliard Ensemble, and the Tambuco Percussion Ensemble. She has commissioned and/or performed countless new works for percussion by composers such as Donald Crockett, William Kraft, Steve Hoey, Veronika Krausas, Erica Muhl, Arthur Jarvinen, Sean Heim, Jeff Holmes, and Shaun Naidoo. An advocate for diversity in music, Ms. Vartan is well known as a recording artist, and has appeared on the ECM New Series, New World Records, Bridge Records, Albany

Records, and was twice Grammy® nominated on the Cambria label with Southwest Chamber Music for “Best Classical Album of the Year.” n

Ms. Vartan is endorsed by the Paiste Corporation, Remo Inc., and Marimba One, whom she travels for as artist and performer. www.helenasymphony.org

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ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

BÉLA BARTÓK

Concerto for Orchestra Born: Nagyszentmiklós, Hungary, 25 March 1881 Died: New York City, New York, 26 September 1945

Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra is composed for piccolo, three flutes, three oboes, English horn, three clarinets, bass clarinet, three bassoons, contra-bassoon, four horns, three trumpets, three trombones, tuba, timpani, side drum, bass drum, cymbals, triangle, tam-tam, two harps, and divided strings.

Duration: 6 minutes

parallel events / 1943 Height of World War II in Europe and the Pacific Italy surrenders to Allies Aaron Copland composes Fanfare for the Common Man Picasso paints First Steps Leonard Bernstein first conducts the New York Philharmonic as a last minute substitute Composer and pianist Rachmaninoff dies Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! premieres 22

While several composers have portrayed their national heritage in their music, Hungarian composer Béla Bartók is remembered more than any other composer for capturing the sounds of the folk music of his homeland. His life’s ambition was “to contribute to the good of Hungary and of the Hungarian nation.” Although he made his living primarily as a pianist and teacher, Bartók is now recognized for his compositions and his lifelong devotion to collecting and publishing the folk songs of his country. Raised as a Roman Catholic, Bartók became an atheist, and then later a Unitarian. He believed that the existence of God could not be determined and it was not necessary to know. The young Bartók demonstrated musical abilities at an early age. He could distinguish different dance rhythms before he learned to speak in complete sentences, and by the age of four, he was able to play some forty works on the piano. After his father died when Bartók was seven, his family moved and he focused on his musical studies more formally. He gave his first public recital when he was eleven where he also performed his own first composition. By his early twenties, Bartók was studying with a student of Franz Liszt and at the Royal Academy of Music in Budapest. Like so many other young composers, Bartók was strongly influenced by the music of Richard Strauss. At first, Bartók’s largerscale works were in the style of Brahms and Strauss; however, Bartók focused most of his career and life on discovering the folk music of Eastern Europe. Along with his classmate and friend, Hungarian composer Zoltán Kodály, Bartók traveled throughout the regions of Hungary and Romania to collect, analyze, and catalogue the

native folk music. Using primitive recording equipment, Bartók and Kodály produced two volumes for solo piano containing 80 folk tunes. Bartók composed works that combined folk music, asymmetrical dance rhythms, and pungent harmonies. After his earlier works, Bartók became deeply influence by the modernist techniques of the twentieth century, such as the works of Igor Stravinsky. Bartók claimed that his music was always tonal, although his works rarely use the conventional chords or scales of tonality. In addition to one opera (Bluebeard’s Castle), Bartók composed two ballets, many works for solo piano, six superb string quartets, concertos for violin, piano, and viola, several orchestra works, including his Concerto for Orchestra – his most popular work, and great masterpiece. By 1940, Bartók reluctantly immigrated to the United States because of the increasing political unrest in Europe. While in the hospital in 1943 suffering from symptoms that would eventually be diagnosed as leukemia, he was commissioned by the music director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Serge Koussevitzky, for a $1,000 to compose a new symphonic work. The commission seemed to give some temporary relief to Bartók and he completed the Concerto for Orchestra in three months. The premiere performance on December 1, 1944 was a triumph – rare for Bartók’s music for American audiences at the time. Composed during the height of Fascism in Europe on the eve of War World II, the Concerto for Orchestra was conceived and composed as a personal expression “of homesickness and hope for his country, and of peace and brotherhood for the world,” Bartók confided in a several Hungarian friends. The final years of the War “gave rise to a number of orchestral works by various composers that were conceived in a spirit of optimism and undisguised


warmth of heart, suggests musicologist Richard Freed, “including Copland’s Appalachian Spring. A Bartók biographer further explained that the Concerto for Orchestra “is the portrayal of Hungary’s tragic fate…where the national finally rises above the chaos of destruction. Bartók always believed that even a people’s outward fate can change for the better only through inner purification.” Bartók explained in the program notes that “the general mood of the work represents – apart from the jesting second movement – a gradual transition of the first movement and the lugubrious death song of the third movement, to the life-assertion of the last movement.” As stated in the title, the Concerto for Orchestra is designed to treat individual instruments and groups of instruments as soloists. While a handful of other concerto for orchestras existed at the time, Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra has become the paradigm of a work featuring the individual sections, and today is considered one of the most prolific works of the twentieth century. Opening with an ominous atmosphere in the lower strings, Bartók depicted the first movement as “sternness;” yet, once the entire orchestra enters there are wonderful, prominent sections for brass and exciting lyrical passages until the movement triumphantly crashes to a close. The “sternness” of the first movement is interrupted by the second movement “Game of Pairs,” whereby a string of

duets by each of the woodwinds and trumpets play different folk-like melodies after a very dry side drum introduction. Titled “Elegy,” Bartók delighted in the third movement’s “night music,” which serves as the arch of the entire work. Using two folk-like themes, the heart-warming melodic passages of the fourth movement, titled “Interrupted Intermezzo,” are coupled with wonderfully fun, almost-circus like interjections until the movement quietly and simply just stops. The finale is based largely on bagpipe tunes Bartók collected on his field trips to Transylvania, and there are even hints of Edvard Grieg’s Norwegian Dances. In a musical rollercoaster ride, the final movement represents “the brotherhood of all nations, in spite of wars and conflicts,” explains Bartók. It is “a whirling paroxysm of dance in which all the peoples of the world join hands.” In a round dance, the strings exert a wild perpetual motion, while the brass rejoices proclaiming Bartók’s “life-assertion” in a blazing ending. After conducting the premiere performance, Koussevitzky declared the Concerto for Orchestra “the best orchestra piece of the last 25 years.” Tragically, just when American audiences began to take an interest in Bartók’s music, his poor health continued, and he died from the leukemia in 1945 at the age 64. While his body was initially interred in New York, in 1988 Bartók’s two sons had his remains exhumed and transferred back to Budapest for burial. n

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Exergy Masterworks Concert IV

FAURÉ’s Requiem MONDAY, 25 FEBRUARY 2013 / 7:30PM / CATHEDRAL OF ST. HELENA

Allan R. Scott, conducting SAUNDRA DEATHOS, soprano KEVIN MATHEWS, baritone

Helena Symphony Orchestra & CHORALE

GÓRECKI Symphony No. 3, Op. 36, Symphony of Sorrowful Songs+ Ms. DeAthos, soprano I. Lento – Sostenuto tranquillo ma cantabile II. Lento e Largo – Tranquillissimo III. Lento – Cantabile semplice

** Intermission **

FAURÉ Requiem, Op. 48 Ms. DeAthos, soprano Mr. Mathews, baritone I. Introit and Kyrie II. Offertory III. Sanctus IV. Pie Jesu V. Agnus Dei VI. Libera me VII. In paradisium

+ = Premiere performance by the Helena Symphony.

The use of photographic and recording equipment is strictly prohibited. • Latecomers will not be seated until an appropriate time in the concert. As a courtesy to the performers and fellow concert-goers, please turn off all cell phones and electronic devices prior to the beginning of the performance. www.helenasymphony.org

25


ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

HENRYK GÓRECKI

Symphony No. 3, Op. 36, Symphony of Sorrowful Songs Born: Czernica, Poland, 6 December 1933 Died: Katowice, Poland, 12 November 2010

The Symphony of Sorrowful Songs is composed for two piccolos, four flutes, four clarinets, two bassoons, two contrabassoons, four horns, four trombones, harp, piano, divided strings, and soprano solo.

Duration: 54 minutes

parallel events / 1976 Jimmy Carter is elected 39th U.S. President U.S. Supreme Court rules that capital punishment is constitutional Episcopal Church allows women to become priest West Point Military Academy allows women to enroll Earthquake in Central America kills 23,000 North and South Vietnam officially reunify Apple Computer Company is founded Hank Aaron hits his 755th and final homerun

Laverne & Shirley premieres on TV Chinese communist leader Mao Tse-tung, mystery novelist Agatha Christie, and actor Lee J. Cobb die 26

The world outside of Poland first became aware of Henryk Górecki’s music after the 1991 recording of Górecki’s Symphony No. 3, Symphony of Sorrowful Songs (composed in 1976), topped the Billboard charts, selling over a million copies. Today, Górecki’s music offers a directness and emotional impact that has established him as a major figure of contemporary music. Apart from two brief periods of study in Paris in the 1960’s and a stay in Berlin in 1973, Górecki has remained loyal to his roots in southern Poland where his affinity for and awareness of Polish folk culture and religious heritage formed the foundation of his musical language. Whether in abstract and large-scale works or in more intimate chamber works, Górecki has increasingly allowed the simplicity of his musical utterances to stand on their own. Górecki’s determination to find his own musical voice began while using many of the compositional techniques of legendary Hungarian composer Béla Bartók and Polish composer Karol Szymanowski. Górecki’s earlier works were more radical and dissonant and he was considered one of most avant-garde composers during the 1950’s and 1960’s. Like Penderecki (a Polish champion of avant-garde music), Górecki believed that the more dissonant and the harsher the sounds, the better. The “Polish School of the 1960’s” became known as “sound mass composition” or “sonoristic composition,” where composers reduced music to pure sound, stripping away melody and tonality and leaving only tone color with clashes of vertical and horizontal sound patterns. Many of Górecki’s earliest works exemplify his formative style, namely his Genesis Cycle, Four Piano Preludes, Old Polish Music, and the aggressive orchestra tone poem Scontri.

As Górecki’s compositional style evolved, his music began to rid itself of all extraneous elements that were not linked to his own personal expression. During the 1970’s, he worked to achieve a direct link between his musical architecture and the emotional and spiritual content of texts (both sacred and Polish folk texts). Like many 20th century composers, Górecki turned to Renaissance music for inspiration, particularly 16th century polyphony. His focus on vocal music resulted in a simplification of the harmonic and textural elements of his works and his works changed from harsh, dissonant sounds to more melodic and appealing compositions. This exploration also claimed roots in minimalism, a popular 20th century compositional technique that uses rudimentary elements such as simple scales and few-note melodies that remain fairly stagnant throughout, with slow, layering developments. It was this style that gave birth to Górecki’s most popular work, his Symphony No. 3 – Symphony of Sorrowful Songs. Composed at the end of 1976 in Poland, the work is symbolic of his transition between a dissonant earlier style and more tonal sounds. The result has Górecki seemingly rejecting the values typically associated with contemporary classical music, meaning musical development, harmonic exploration, and often several ideas occurring simultaneously. The sounds and aural colors literally emerge from silence as the guiding force. The music is meditative, hypnotic, and repetitive that seems to favor simplicity, transparency, and serenity. The lack of any real harmonic development combined with the very repetitive phrases in the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs allows the listener to get consumed by waves of ethereal sounds. Górecki almost creates a transition from the earthly world to another place where time stands still. When the angelic-like soprano soloist enters in each movement, the work continued on page 30


guest artist

saundra deathos soprano

Lyric Soprano Saundra DeAthos has been heralded for the remarkable quality of both her vocal and dramatic presentations. Ms. DeAthos has appeared with the Helena Symphony several time, including the title role of Madame

Butterfly in the Helena Symphony’s fully-staged production in 2011, and past performances of Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro and Handel’s Messiah. Maestro Scott and Ms. DeAthos recently appeared with the Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony Orchestra last season. Excelling in a varied and broad repertoire, she began her career in the Merola Opera Program and as an Adler Fellow with the San Francisco Opera. Flourishing in the spotlight, Ms. DeAthos claimed principal assignments with the San Francisco Opera in Alcina, Ariadne auf Naxos, The Cunning Little Vixen, La Cenerentola, Die Entführung auf dem Serail, La Finta Giardiniera, Edgar and Emily, and Così Fan Tutte. Ms. DeAthos has graced the stages of many outstanding opera companies and symphonies across the United States including San Francisco Opera, Western Opera

mony Harmony time. at tax time.

Theater, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Boston Lyric Opera, Virginia Opera, Eugene Opera, Sacramento Opera, Opera North, Opera Illinois, West Bay Opera, San Francisco Symphony, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra, Sinfonia da Camera, Illinois Symphony Orchestra, Fresno Symphony Orchestra and the Elgin Symphony Orchestra among others. Ms. DeAthos recently performed Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem with Charleston Symphony Orchestra in a performance that was recorded for PBS telecast, and returned to Charleston to perform “Micaëla” in Carmen with Denyce Graves for Opera Charleston. Upcoming engagements include concerts with Illinois Symphony Orchestra, and a return to Madama Butterfly with Amarillo Opera. n

Ms. DeAthos appears courtesy of InterArts Management (New York, NY).

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HELENA SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA VIOLIN

VIOLA

piccolo

horn

Stephen Cepeda Concertmaster Eleanor Parker Associate Concertmaster Allison Elliott Acting Concertmaster Linda Meuret*+ Principal Second Chelsey Hallsten Associate Principal Second Sylvia Allen Cathy Bourne Colleen Casey Allison Elliott+ Laura Dalbey Sarah Hallgrimson Anita Ho Kathryn Huether Jaime Huestis Jeffrie Iams Heather Irby* Megan Karns Barbara Kirk Amy Letson Heidi Martin Michael Mleko Mary Murphy Cathyanne Nonini Steve Olson Melyssa Ostler Grace Palmer Emily Paris Rachel Petite Melanie Pozdol Betsy Rivers Erin Robbins Laura Schneider Rebecca Sharp Erika Syroid Geoffrey Taylor Liliana Vaughn Roslyn Weiss Coral White

John Peskey+ Principal Jared Wiley Associate Principal Lisa Bollman Julia Borden Jeff Brainard Carissa Gates Patricia Gates Jamie Huestis Amy Letson Rebecca Sharp Jennifer Smith Richard Wells

Elizabeth Burke

Nancy Roe+ Principal Warren McCullough, Associate Principal Brooke Mortensen Laura McDonald

String section players are listed alphabetically as seating rotates.

* Leave of Absence + Players Council 28

Helena Symphony

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flute Barbara Berg+ Principal Elizabeth Burke Kathy Chase+ Amy Olinger

oboe Becky Tipler Principal Sandra Rolan Sue Logan

cello Linda Kuhn Principal Jesse Ahmann Katharine Beckman Elizabeth Coogan Lindsay Crosby Don Harmsworth Bethany Joyce Lucas Poe-Kiser Diane Sine Matthew Wellart John Wheeler Carson Yahvah

english horn Beth Antonopulos

trumpet Michael Hamling Acting Co-Principal Matthew Makeever, Acting Co-Principal John Halko Duane Zehr

trombone Don Stone Principal Brad Elison Scott Kall

clarinet Jill Miller Principal James Burkholder Associate Principal Jennifer Skogley

bass clarinet Jennifer Skogley

bass

e-flat clarinet

Kezia Vernon Principal Sarah Burdick John Coefield April Cooper Thomas Larson Trebor Riddle

James Burkholder

bassoon Dana Nehring Co-Principal Alicia McLean Co-Principal David Horne

contrabasson Paul Gates

tuba Phil Johnstone

harp Tess Michel Angela Espinosa

piano & celeste June Lee

organ & harpsichord Joe Munzenrider

timpani Kerry G. Brown+

percussion Kerry G. Brown+ Principal Mark Schummer+ John Dorr Brianna Kienitz Lauree Wenger


HELENA SYMPHONY CHORALE soprano Fay Buness Sue Brookhart Christine Brown Heidi Browne* Sue Clarke* Mackenzie Deobald Kelly Downing Laurie Ekanger Christine Gardner Jill Guthrie Nancy Harper Jemma Hazen Fong Hom Linda Keim Janet Kenny Carolyn Linden Barbara Martin Sharon Maynard Patty Mazurek Karen McLean Laura Pippin Sanna Porte Deanna Satre

Rachael Schwaller Carol Waniata Mary Williams Tasha Zoanni*

Judy Nakagawa Roberta Nelson Cecily Norine Carol Potuzak Kelly Sprekelmeyer

alto

Marty Thieltges

Cathy Barker

Michelle Wiseman*

Andrea Bateen Kathy Bramer Connie Conley*

Echolyn Travis Cathy Wright Dawn Zehr

Naci Forkan Pat Callbeck Harper Lois Hudson Christine Kaufmann Brenda Lamb Rika Lashley Barb Leake Sharon Madsen Beverly Magley Michelle Maltese

David Buness Robert Caldwell Ed Canty John Flink Hal Fossum Ed Glenn Gary Guthie Bradley Johnson Jim Keil Pat Keim

Olivia Destiche Chris Deveny

BASS

tenor Henry Elsen Bob FitzGerald Rusty Harper Paul Hutter Duane Johnson Jacob Johnson John Mundinger Phil Robison Neil Squires

Lona McClanahan

Dale Wanita

Liz Moore

Alex Worthy

Ron Nelson Brett O’Neil Francisco Roman Torry van Slyke Robert Snyder Gordon Stockstad Michael Swisher Brad Ulgenes Dick Weaver Greg Zeihen

* Leave of Absence

©2012. Allen S. Lefohn

www.helenasymphony.org

29


continued from page 26

becomes personal and at times heart-breaking. For each of the three movements, Górecki uses three different scenes or laments to transcend specific ideas. Despite the fact that many listeners and scholars have attempted to explain the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs as a response to a political or historical event (namely the Holocaust or World War II), Górecki has maintained that the work is an evocation of the ties between mother and child. “It’s not about war,” says Górecki. “It’s not a Dies irae (part of the funeral service); it’s a normal symphony of sorrowful songs.” Using somewhat of an unconventional make up of instruments (no oboes, trumpets, or percussion), Górecki constructs a 54-minute work around simple harmonies taken from medieval and renaissance music. At the same time, the work has the emotional impact of late Romantic composers. “It is mournful, like Mahler’s music, but without the bombast of percussion, horns, and choir – just the sorrow of strings and the lone soprano,” said the Chicago Sun Times. Each of the three movements is marked Lento, indicating the very slow tempo and rarely does the music reach a fortissimo (very strong dynamic). After a slow, drone-like opening where the strings layer sound upon themselves, the very lengthy first movement focuses on a late 15th century lament in which the Virgin Mary speaks to her Son dying on the cross: “O my son, beloved and chosen, Share your wounds with your mother…” In the second movement, Górecki uses an inscription scrawled on the wall of a cell of a Gestapo prison by an 18 year old Polish woman in 1944, which read, “No, Mother, do not weep. Most chaste Queen of Heaven, support me always.” Górecki explains that the young Jewish woman before her execution “seeks comfort and support in simple, short but meaningful words.” Unlike the other cries of rage and desperation written on the prison walls, this young woman “does not despair, does not cry, does not scream for revenge,” says Górecki. “She does not think about herself. She only thinks about her mother: because it is her mother who will experience true despair.” The movement is resolved as the strings sustain a chord

without diminishing in sound for nearly one and a half minutes as the soprano sings the first two lines of the Polish “Ave Maria.” Beginning with “Where has he gone, my dear son,” the third and final movement describes a mother’s mourning for a son lost in war and probably dates from 1919-1921. Unlike the few short, simple lines in the first two movements, the poem from the third movement contains eight “wonderfully poetic” stanzas, the composer explains. “It is not sorrow, despair or resignation, or the wringing of hands,” says Górecki, “it is just the great grief and lamenting of a mother who has lost her son.” The early recordings of the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs were widely criticized by the press outside Poland, suggesting that Górecki had strayed too far from the established avant-garde style, calling the work “decadent trash” that wanders outside of modern music. By the mid 1980’s, the Symphony of Sorrowful Songs was used by filmmakers, rock bands, and radio stations in the U.S. and Britain started playing the work. After the fall of communism in Eastern Europe, Polish music gained more attention, and Górecki’s music was being performed throughout the world. After the 1991 recording of the work made by the London Sinfonietta, conducted by David Zinman and featuring soprano soloist Dawn Upshaw, audiences around the world were intrigued, and more than 700,000 copies were sold. It climbed to number six on the mainstream UK album charts, and stayed at the top of the classical charts in the U.S. for 38 weeks. Today, over a million copies have been sold. The allure of the work for listeners is not just based on the beautifully tragic songs of lament. It may be because of the irresistible spiritual hypnosis that Górecki imposes on us. The Symphony of Sorrowful Songs forces time to stop as the work seems to drift off into an infinite space. We are forced to hang on until the music lets go of us. While Górecki suggests that the work is not dealing with historical events or religious dogma, it is hard to deny that the work’s theme of anguish becomes a journey to discover one’s spiritual identity. n

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ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

GABRIEL FAURÉ Requiem, Op. 48

Born: Pamiers, France, 12 May 1845 Died: Paris, France, 4 November 1924

Fauré’s Requiem originally published with an orchestra of two flutes, two clarinets, two bassoons, four horns, two trumpets, three trombones, timpani, harp, organ, divided strings, soprano and baritone solos, and mixed chorus. The work was revised to meet the composer’s intentions and is scored for two bassoons, four horns, two optional trumpets, optional timpani, harp, organ, violas, cellos, basses, solo violin, soprano and baritone solos, and mixed chorus.

Duration: 40 minutes

parallel events / 1888 Benjamin Harrison is elected 23rd U.S. President Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony premieres Rimsky-Korsakov composes Scheherazade Van Gogh paints Portrait of a Young Man in a Cap National Geographic Society is founded Songwriter Irving Berlin, poet T.E. Eliot, author Ian Fleming, playwright Eugene O’Neill, family patriarch Joseph Kennedy, and comedian Adolph Author “Harpo” Marx are born Kodak invents the box camera 32

Throughout history, composers have been compelled by the idea of writing a requiem mass – the work considered by many to be the defining mark in the career of a composer. It is not surprising that some of the most performed and loved choral works are requiems, such as those by Mozart, Verdi, Brahms, and Fauré. Through the requiem mass, composers have been able to confront and express their ideas of death and an afterlife in many unique ways. Mozart’s controversial Requiem suggests death is more about judgment, while Verdi offers dramatic opera-like images of and desperate pleadings to a larger-than-life being in his Messa da Requiem. It is Fauré, however, who would challenge the conventional ideas of a requiem. Fauré’s Requiem, one of more intimate proportions, is grave, rather than tragic, and is untouched by the grandiose visions, dramatic contrasts, and apocalyptic attitudes of his predecessors’ requiems. The sixth child of a French schoolmaster and his wife, Gabriel Urbain Fauré served as a church organist and educator for the majority of his life. Trained at the School of Classical and Sacred Music, Fauré eventually succeeded his teacher, friend, and well known composer, Camille Saint-Saëns as organist at the Church of La Madeliene and as professor of composition at the Paris Conservatory. Fauré wrote during the postBeethoven Romantic era, where most composers followed the trends of overstatement dominated by Wagner; however, Fauré in a sense, like Brahms, began a real rejection of these trends. Fauré composed subtler, seemingly simple music, yet equally as captivating as the bombastic sounds of Wagner. Through an interweaving of melodic figures combined with the most noble of orchestral colors, Fauré essentially laid the foundation to what scholars now call impressionism in music. Most of what Debussy is credited with today is largely due in part to the curriculum

Fauré imposed on Debussy’s years at the Paris Conservatory where Fauré served as director. Like most great composers of perfect melodies, Fauré did not exhaust his melodic gems in long, drawn out works. He wrote dozens of brief orchestral works, with and without chorus during the course of his forty-year career as a composer. He spent the last fourteen years of his life haunted by deafness and died in Paris at the age of 79. It is believed that Fauré began work on the Requiem in 1886 and completed the work in 1888. Despite the fact that his mother had died on 31 December 1888, and his father two years prior, Fauré maintained that the work was composed solely “for the pleasure of it.” Fauré’s Requiem is not theatrical in character; the drama is essentially interior. The conflicts and resolutions, aspirations and fears that find expression are transfigured into musical terms, and they demand no externalization of gesture, scenery, or orchestral variation. His Requiem in many ways is the culmination of Fauré’s genius for melody, his precision of thought, and subtlety of emotion. Through the use of a soprano solo set to the text of Pie Jesu (Blessed Jesus) and his almost complete exclusion of the standard requiem text – Dies irae, dies illa (Day of wrath and doom) and Tuba mirum (Trumpet sounds), Fauré evokes a mood of serenity, emphasizing mercy and hope. Fittingly, the first and last utterances define the entire work – Fauré begins and ends with the word “requiem” (“rest”). Whereas many attribute the source of Verdi’s Requiem to opera, Fauré’s Requiem is rooted in the art of song. Moreover, Fauré’s Requiem is characterized by its “quietness,” and a certain transparency of texture which displays the fine balance between sense and intelligence, and the spirit over the flesh. Fauré confirms this, stating that “altogether my Requiem is as gentle as I am myself.” Though Beethoven desired to compose a requiem himself and did not, he had definite thoughts about such a work. “A Requiem ought to be quiet music – it needs no trump of doom; memories of the dead require no hubbub.” Gabriel Fauré obviously agreed. n


guest artist

kevin mathews baritone Popular Helena Baritone Kevin Mathews is a frequent Helena Symphony guest artist. Mr. Mathews has previously appeared with the Helena Symphony in performances of the inaugural “Night at the Opera,” Family Holiday Concert, multiple Symphony Under the Stars concerts, Handel’s Messiah, and as “Anthony Hope” in Sweeney Todd, “Zuñiga” and “Moralès” in Bizet’s Carmen, “Count Almaviva” in The Marriage of Figaro, “Fiorello” in The Barber of Seville, and the “Imperial Commissioner” and recently as “Prince Yamadori” in Madame Butterfly. Mr. Mathews is well known to the Helena community for his appearances in The King and I and Urinetown at Grandstreet Theatre, as a vocal soloist with Ballet Montana, as a frequent soloist with the Helena Chamber Singers, and recently for his portrayal of “Count Malcom” in Helena Theater Company’s production of Sondheim’s operetta A Little Night Music. He has also appeared as soloist with the Bozeman Symphonic Choir and Montana State University Orchestra & Chorale. In 2011, Mr. Mathews appeared in a production The Pirates of Penzance with the Glacier Symphony & Chorale. n

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Exergy Masterworks Concert V

Violin Virtuosity and La Mer SATURDAY, 23 MARCH 2013 / 7:30PM / HELENA CIVIC CENTER

Allan R. Scott, conducting RICHARD AMOROSO, violin

Helena Symphony Orchestra

SHOSTAKOVICH Violin Concerto No. 1 in A minor, Op. 77+ Mr. Amoroso, violin I. Nocturne: Moderato II. Scherzo: Allegro III. Passacaglia: Andanta – Cadenza — IV. Burlesque: Allegro con brio – Presto

** Intermission **

RESPIGHI Ancient Airs & Dances: Suite No. 2 I. Laura soave: Balletto con gagliarda saltarello e canrario II. Danza rustica III. Campanae Parisienses & Aria IV. Bergamasca DEBUSSY La Mer+ I. De l’aube à midi sur la mer (From Dawn to Noon on the Sea) II. Jeux de vagues (Wave Play) III. Dialogue du vent et de la mer (Dialogue of Wind & Sea)

+ = Premiere performance by the Helena Symphony.

The use of photographic and recording equipment is strictly prohibited. • Latecomers will not be seated until an appropriate time in the concert. As a courtesy to the performers and fellow concert-goers, please turn off all cell phones and electronic devices prior to the beginning of the performance. www.helenasymphony.org

35


ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH

Violin Concerto No. 1 in A minor, Op. 77 (Op. 99) Born: St. Petersburg, Russia, 25 September 1906 Died: Moscow, Soviet Union, 9 August 1975

Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 1 is scored for solo violin, piccolo, three flutes, three oboes, English horn, three clarinets, bass clarinet, three bassoons, contra-bassoon, four horns, tuba, timpani, xylophone, tambourine, tam-tam, harp, celeste, and divided strings.

Duration: 40 minutes

parallel events / 1955 Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat on a bus Winston Churchill resigns as Prime Minister of U.K. Elvis Presley makes television debut Simon & Garfunkel, Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Little Richard, and John Coltrane all begin their careers Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita, and J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings are published Gunsmoke, The Honeymooners, Lawrence Welk Show, Mickey Mouse Club, and Captain Kangaroo all debut on television Disneyland opens in California Board game Scrabble debuts Scientist Albert Einstein, jazz musician Charlie Parker, and baseball player Cy Young all die 36

About the Composer Some composers are often identified by their nationality or a national movement than by their own music. Verdi was uniquely tied with Italian unity, Copland with the American frontier, and Shostakovich with the former Soviet Union. Described as “the conscience of the Soviet Union,” Dmitri Shostakovich has become one of the most discussed figures in music since the composer’s death, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the turn of the 21st century. Publicly Shostakovich was a member of the Communist Party and, unlike his Russian colleagues Prokofiev and Stravinsky who lived abroad, Shostakovich emerged because of, rather than despite of, the Soviet regime. Shostakovich’s upbringing was rooted in music as his parents were both amateur musicians. After graduating from the St. Petersburg Conservatory, Shostakovich felt the need to choose between a career as a pianist or composer. Although composing did not come easily, he chose a career as a composer and quickly gained international attention with his First Symphony, which he composed when he was eighteen years old. Like any artist, Shostakovich’s curiosities led him to seek other influences, especially the works of Prokofiev and Stravinsky who had become “Western-ized.” Shostakovich’s discovery of modernism and post-modernism was quickly squashed by the Soviet government, as everything in the Soviet Union was viewed in political terms. Soviet musicologists proclaimed that the new Soviet Union awaited “a composer whose melodies will touch the hearts of all sections of the populations and… will not only warm the concert hall but the streets and fields as well, because it will be music with roots deep in

Russian life…” As Shostakovich’s early musical efforts became internationally recognized, the Soviet Union was quick to capitalize on Shostakovich’s success (how ironic!) and adopted Shostakovich as the country’s “musical spokesperson.” His music would provide propaganda for the Soviet government and the communist way of life to an international community. The relationship between the Soviet government and Shostakovich was complex. His music suffered two official denunciations and periodic bans of his work. At one point, the Communist Party declared Shostakovich’s music offensive and harmful to Soviet citizens as it contained “decadent Western manners” and “formalist perversions.” At the same time, he received a number of accolades and state awards, and served in the Supreme Soviet. Shostakovich was reminded by the Stalin regime that his duty was to compose for the Soviet people and his works should provide inspiration for the communist way of life. Despite the official controversy, Shostakovich remained the most popular Soviet composer of his generation. Shostakovich reacted, at least publicly, by accepting the political ideology of the Soviet government and composed several works that, at least superficially, embraced the communist regime. He proceeded to speak out against Western music. Looking back and seeing the dreadful alternatives, he had no choice. While he composed some private works such as his string quartets and the tragic Tenth Symphony, Shostakovich mainly produced “acceptable” compositions, including the patriotic oratorio The Song of the Forests, the cantata The Sun Shines Over Our Land¸ and Symphony Nos. 5, 7 (titled Leningrad), 11 (titled The Year 1905), and 12 (titled The Year 1917). After suffering from severe heart problems and from his life long bout with tuberculosis, Shostakovich continued on page 38


guest artist

richard amoroso violin Violinist Richard Amoroso joined The Philadelphia Orchestra in 1998. Born in 1970 to a musical family, Mr. Amoroso is wellknown for his involvement in the Philadelphia musical community and for his extensive work with young people. A former pupil of past Philadelphia Orchestra concertmasters, Norman Carol and William de Pasquale, Mr. Amoroso continues in the long and rich tradition of these artists. Recently, he has served as Acting Assistant Concertmaster. Recent engagements include performances of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto with the Ambler Symphony Orchestra and Delaware County Youth Orchestra, and a performance of Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with Maestro Scott and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he has appeared in recital at Carnegie Hall, and a solo appearance with the Philly Pops Orchestra. In addition, Mr. Amoroso speaks from the stage to both subscription and young audiences of the Philadelphia Orchestra. He is also a frequent participant in the Orchestra’s chamber music series and Family Concerts. Mr. Amoroso’s relationship with The Philadelphia Orchestra began at the age of 14 when, as winner of the orchestra’s student concerto competition, he performed as soloist with the Orchestra on the stage of the famed Academy of Music. He continued his studies at the Settlement School of Music and later earned his bachelor’s degree from Dickinson College, graduating Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa. Mr. Amoroso plays on a Nicolai Gagliano violin made in 1765. n

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ultimately died a painful death from lung cancer. His death coincided with the anniversary of the first performance of his Seventh Symphony and with the eleventh birthday of his grandson Dmitri, Maxim’s son. Three decades after Shostakovich’s death and less than twenty years after the fall of the Soviet Union, the West has rediscovered Shostakovich as a composer of immense integrity and of fearless perseverance and courage. Today we realize that he spoke through a mask of conformism using musical codes. Shostakovich gave the Soviet authorities what they demanded, yet he deliberately maintained a musical expression that spoke to his audience – the people who were suppressed by the communist government.

David Oistrakh, the Violin Concerto was originally numbered as Opus 77, but because it did not premiere until 1955, it was renumbered as Opus 99. Toward the end of his life, Shostakovich decided to restore the original opus number to the Concerto in order to establish the work’s true chronology, while retaining the later number as well, in order to emphasize the point of the delay from the time of its composition to the time of its premiere, and to demonstrate to the world what he did to preserve his creativity for his own survival. In Testimony: The Memoirs of Dmitri Shostakovich, the controversial biography of Shostakovich, the composer explains the inspiration behind the First Violin Concerto:

About the Music After the Soviet government denounced Shostakovich, Prokofiev, and other composers in 1948, charging them with the sin of “formalism,” the Soviet musical community went into a period of darkness that ended only with Stalin’s death five years later. While Shostakovich completed his first violin concerto in 1947, he waited until two years after Stalin’s death to unveil the work when there seemed to be a thaw from the Stalin years. Composed for the renowned virtuoso violinist,

Jewish folk music has made a most powerful impression on me. I never tire of delighting in it; it’s multifaceted, it can appear to be happy while it is tragic. It’s almost always laughter through tears… [But] this is not purely a musical issue; this is also a moral issue. The Jews became the most persecuted and defenseless people of Europe [during World War II]. It was a return to the Middle Ages. Jews became a symbol for me. All of man’s defenselessness was concentrated in them. After the War, I tried to convey that feeling in my music.

Helena Symphony

406.442.1860


While Jewish music is not specifically present in the Violin Concerto, the work invokes the Jewish spirit in a general way, with hints of ethnic flavor, specifically in the second and final movements. Shostakovich considered his First Violin Concerto a “symphony for solo violin and orchestra,” given the somewhat unorthodox layout of the work in four movements in lieu of three. Likewise it has such meaningful depth of expression and fully developed musical argument, that it has little in common with the conventional concerto. Even though Shostakovich would often begin a work with a slow movement, the opening of the Violin Concerto is unlike anything else he composed. With a hushed restraint, Shostakovich titles the first movement a Nocturne or “night music,” – typically reflective or somber at times. The ebbing and flowing of the lower strings gives shape to the movement as the soloist speaks, and, at times, seems to pine with sense of longing. To capture an intensity, the writing for the solo violin is very high until the solo comes swirling down out of the darkness of the night music. By contrast, the Scherzo movement is a wonderful, yet rough, dance that skittishly scampers the second movement to an unrelenting close. In the third movement Shostakovich

uses a passacaglia – a slow, grave dance with imposing majesty. With horn fanfares ringing in the movement, the woodwinds sing a somber tune before the solo violin enters with a sense of profound inwardness, and soars above the ominous subject below. The orchestra dies away and the passionate theme yields to a lengthy unaccompanied solo for the violin (the cadenza). Simply marked “quiet but majestic,” the violin solo first plays a meditation on the passacaglia theme and then it gradually becomes faster and more agitated recalling the rigid rhythm and skittish theme from the scherzo until it launches into the final movement. Labeled a “burlesque,” the final movement implies a mocking or joking character, and almost sneering at times. With folk-like vigor and stinging sounds of the xylophone, the finale interjects Shostakovich’s defiant wit that has, if not entirely optimistic, certainly a triumphant ending. At the time of the premiere performance in 1955, the violin soloist, David Oistrakh, explained that “the Concerto is a real challenge to the soloist: it may be likened to a Shakespearian role, demanding from the artist the greatest emotional and intellectual dedication… you can always sense the profoundest meditation on life, on the fate of mankind.” n

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39


ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

OTTORINO RESPIGHI

Ancient Airs and Dances, Suite No. 2 Born: Bologna, Italy, 9 July 1879 Died: Rome, Italy, 18 April 1936 While Europe was on the brink of World War I in 1913, Italy launched

Ancient Airs and Dances, Suite No. 2 is scored for piccolo, two flutes, two oboes, English horn, two clarinets, two bassoons, three horns, two trumpets, three trombones, timpani, harp, four-hand harpsichord, celeste, and divided strings. Duration: 20 minutes

the career of its two most prominent musicians of the century. To great acclaim (especially Italians), Arturo Toscanini conducted the world premiere of Ottorini Respighi’s symphonic poem, The Fountains of Rome. Born into a musical family, Respighi was educated at the local conservatory in Bologna in Italy; however, his most influential studies occurred under the tutelage of Russian composer Rimsky-Korsakov in St. Petersburg, where Respighi worked as a violist in the opera orchestra. The lessons must have had a profound effect on the young Italian musician, because within a few years Respighi gave up a full time career as a soloist and member of a string quartet for a life as a composer and teacher at the Conservatory of St. Cecilia in Rome. Even though Respighi wrote nine operas, several ballets, and chamber

parallel events / 1924 Largest stock market boom, with Ford Motor Company stocks equal to $1 billion Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue premieres

music, he is mostly remembered and admired for his musical tone poems (not unlike his Russian mentor). Tone poems, for all practical purposes, allowed composers to experiment with orchestra color without having to be concerned with

Douglas Fairbanks’ film, The Thief of Baghdad, premieres

symphonic structure.

Richard Strauss’ opera Intermezzo premieres

inspired by another work of art such

Soviet dictator Stalin comes to power MGM film studios open Olympics in Paris Calvin Coolidge is elected the 30th U.S. President Marlin Brando is born 40

A symphonic tone poem can be defined as a musical work that is as a painting, poetry, or other music, that does not maintain the form and evolution of a symphony, but does

of Respighi. During a time when Italian heritage and unification were personally important to almost any Italian artist (especially Verdi), and in terms of orchestral music rather than operatic, Respighi alone put his country on the artistic map of the twentieth century. Even though the three tone poems that comprise the Roman Triptych (The Fountains of Rome, The Pines of Rome, and Roman Festival) often receive the most performances and attention, Respighi’s additional symphonic poems are equally noteworthy. With a passion for music of the past, Respighi spent much time editing works by early Renaissance composers. Like the Roman Triptych, Respighi’s Ancient Airs and Dances evolved into three separate suites. All three suites derive from transcriptions of music written for the lute by Italian and French Renaissance composers. The second suite of the Ancient Airs and Dances dating from 1924 (the same year that the second of his Roman Triptych appeared – The Pines of Rome) is a four-movement work that includes three rhythmic dances and one breathtaking, lyrical air. Respighi took basic melodic lute excerpts from over four-hundred years ago, and in turn, crafted a work that is refreshingly new, unmistakably reflective, and intimately joyous. Like all of his symphonic tone poems the boundary between the perception of sight and sound is almost impenetrable or at the very

maintain similar orchestral size or

least, blurred, perhaps only rivaled

scope. For Respighi, the symphonic

by Stravinsky. If nothing else, these

tone poem became his medium

Suites are worthy of performance

of choice and form at which he

in order to hear the brilliance

mastered. Even the lyrical skills of

of Respighi’s ability to draw out

Puccini and Rossini do not compare

orchestral colors and timbres that

with the orchestration abilities

today are still unparalleled. n


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41


ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

cLAUDE DEBUSSY La Mer (The Sea)

Born: Saint Germain-en-Laye, France, 22 August 1862 Died: Paris, France, 5 March 1918

Debussy’s La Mer is score for piccolo, two flutes, two oboes, English horn, two clarinets, three bassoons, contrabassoon, four horns, three trumpets, two cornets, three trombones, tuba, timpani, bass drum, cymbals, triangle, tam-tam, glockenspiel, two harps, and divided strings.

Duration: 24 minutes

parallel events / 1905 Theodore Roosevelt begins first full term as 26th U.S. President (he completed William McKinley’s term after his assassination) Russia Revolution begins Norway declares independence from Sweden Alfred Einstein presents theory of relativity Richard Strauss’ opera Salome premieres Mahler’s completes his Seventh Symphony Picasso paints Boy in a Collar Baseball great Ty Cobb makes major league debut Actor Henry Fonda, industrialist and aviator Howard Hughes, and band leader Tommy Dorsey are born Rotary Club is founded 42

There are very few defining moments in music history that drastically altered the future of music. Certainly Beethoven’s Third and Ninth Symphonies, Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring, and Debussy’s Prelude to Afternoon of a Faun, which premiered 22 December 1894. In a single ten-minute work, the grandiose late-Romantic era shaped by Richard Wagner collapsed, and the sounds of twentieth century were ushered in and, as modern composer and conductor Pierre Boulez often claims, “the art of music began to beat with a new pulse.” The thirtytwo year old pianist, Claude Debussy indeed did create a completely new sound of music with this tone poem that was inspired by Stéphane Mallarmé’s poem of the same name written almost two decades earlier. The subject matter of Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun however, is not the main interest of the composer; rather, it is the images left over from the faun’s dreams that Debussy attempts to capture, or as Debussy states, “it is the general impression of the poem.” The effect of this sensuous, fluid, subtly constructed music and supremely refined style of composition became known as impressionism in music, and thereby linking Debussy with painters such as Monet, Renoir, and Seurat. For Debussy, music was rooted in memory. In a letter to a pupil, Debussy wrote: “Collect impressions. Don’t be in a hurry to write them down. Because that’s something music can do better than painting: it can centralize variations of color and light within a single picture.” This very statement became Debussy’s credo, mirroring statements from the impressionist and post-impressionist painters.

Earlier in his largely self-taught compositional career Debussy won the coveted Prix de Rome for composition in 1884; composed in Italy (even playing for Liszt); discovered and rejected the growing Wagnerian cult; then returned to Paris more focused and musically mature. It was then that he composed his well-known string quartet and Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun. While Debussy’s music contains the color and ambiguity of Wagner’s harmonies, he avoids its emotional tensions. Through his own discoveries, musically and otherwise, Debussy learned to prefer suggestion to direct statement. He trusted no “lifeless rules invented by pendants,” as Debussy said; rather, it was his instinct that he followed, and in the process he brought to music a unique world of sensibility. In addition to his landmark Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, Debussy is most recognized for the tone poem La Mer (The Sea). In many ways La Mer has become the work most connected with the composer. It is astonishing that La Mer is only Debussy’s seventh major orchestra work, as is a sophisticated, wellconstructed three movement staple of twentieth century music. Organized in three movements (which are never performed alone, unlike Debussy’s Nocturnes), La Mer is the closest Debussy gets to composing a symphony. Subtitled Three Symphonic Sketches for Orchestra, the tone poem is a masterpiece of suggestion and subtlety as it depicts the ocean and its motionlessness, unpredictability, and power. Debussy gives some insight to his overwhelming adoration of the sea as he refers to the ocean as “that great blue Sphinx.” Musicologist Caroline Potter in Debussy & Nature explains that Debussy’s depiction of the sea “avoids


monotony by using a multitude of water figurations… They evoke the sensation of swaying movement of waves and suggest the pitter-patter of falling droplets of spray.” The work opens with a movement titled “From Dawn to Noon on the Sea,” where a slow introduction depicts the sea taking shape from the darkness of morning to the bright sun of midday. The slower introduction “floats in on rippling violins and violas and more deeply undulating cellos…bringing a variety of themes along with extraordinary climax of conflicting rhythms,” explains program annotator Gerald Larner. The movement culminates as the most important themes gloriously emerge to a brilliant sunrise. Titled “Play of Waves,” the second movement is the most thrilling of the three, yet in many ways seems at times the least “Debussy-like.” Puccini referred to La Mer as “Debussy’s revolt against Debussy-ism.” Rooted in a more realistic scene and less of an image, “Play of Waves” captures the unpredictable changes in the wind and the waves. Debussy captures the changes, both subtle and not, and the playfulness of the sea with a dancelike English horn, decorative violins trilling, rhythmic figures in the woodwinds, and the call of a trumpet until a waltz-like figure ensues in the strings. The result is images of color and reflections foreshadowing the sudden coming of dusk. Instead

of the wind making the sea dance, the third movement portrays a “Dialogue of the Wind and the Sea.” In a tempestuous dialogue, there is little calm in the final movement of La Mer . As the low rumble of the cellos and basses convey the approaching storm and the woodwinds give a gust of wind, the theme from the opening movement returns and the natural forces of the sea are mysteriously and wildly unleashed. La Mer was not well-received at its premiere performance, partially because the orchestra was under rehearsed and partially because Parisians were publicly outraged at Debussy for leaving his wife for a singer. Critics also did not praise La Mer , saying the work was “rubbish,” “cacophonous,” and it was a “symphonic pictures of seasickness.” Despite that Debussy was often only admired exclusively for his harmonies, it was his images that were guided by clear melodic passages that contributed to his popularity. Many of Debussy’s works were criticized as being “boneless tonal vibrato,” yet his music was capable of powerful, but controlled eruptions when needed. La Mer remains one of the greatest tone poems in all of music today, picturing the peaceful, turbulent, uncontrolled, all-consuming, reflective, shimmering, dramatic, endless motion of the mysterious ocean. n

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Exergy Masterworks Concert VI

Wagner’s Ring & Mozart’s requiem SATURDAY, 20 APRIL 2013 / 7:30PM / HELENA CIVIC CENTER

Allan R. Scott, conducting Amy Little, soprano TERESA BUCHHOLZ, mezzo soprano KIRK DOUGHERTY, tenor JOSEPH FLAXMAN, baritone

Helena Symphony Orchestra & Chorale

WAGNER

Orchestral Excerpts from Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung)+

DAS RHEINGOLD Entry of the Gods into Valhalla DIE WALKÜRE Ride of the Valkyries Wotan’s Farewell & Magic Fire Music SIEGFRIED Forest Murmurs GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG (Twilight of the Gods) Siegfried’s Death & Funeral March Brunnhilde’s Self-Immolation & Finale

The use of photographic and recording equipment is strictly prohibited. • Latecomers will not be seated until an appropriate time in the concert.

44

Helena Symphony

406.442.1860


** Intermission **

MOZART Requiem, K. 626 Ms. Little, soprano Ms. Buchholz, mezzo soprano Mr. Dougherty, tenor Mr. Flaxman, baritone I. Introit: Requiem aeternam II. Kyrie III. Sequenz Dies irae Tuba mirum Rex tremendae Recordare Confutatis Lacrimosa IV. Offertorium Domine Jesu Christe Hostias V. Sanctus VI. Benedictus VII. Agnus Dei VIII. Communio: Lux aeterna

+ = Premiere performance by the Helena Symphony.

As a courtesy to the performers and fellow concert-goers, please turn off all cell phones and electronic devices prior to the beginning of the performance. www.helenasymphony.org

45


ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

richard wagner

Orchestral Excerpts from The Ring of Nibelungen Born: Leipzig, Germany, 22 May 1813 Died: Venice, Italy, 13 February 1883

The four operas that make up The Ring Cycle were originally orchestrated for two piccolos, four flutes, four oboes, English horn, four clarinets, bass clarinet, three bassoons, contra-bassoon, four horns, four trumpets, four trombones, tuba, four Wagner tubas, timpani, triangle, cymbals, glockenspiel, snare drum, tam-tam, anvils, six harps, and divided strings.

Duration: 16 hours

parallel events / 1876 Colorado becomes 38th U.S. State Thomas Edison patents the mimeograph Rutherford B. Hayes is narrowly elected 19th U.S. President by one electoral vote even though he lost the popular vote Alexander Graham Bell makes first telephone call Brahms’ First Symphony premieres Tchaikovsky completes ballet Swan Lake Monet paints Dans La Prairie and La Repos Dans le Jardin Cellist Pablo Casals is born National League of Professional Baseball Clubs is founded 46

About the Composer Even as one of the most controversial figures in all of music, Richard Wagner remains one of the most influential figures in history. In his lifetime, and for decades after, Wagner inspired almost fanatical devotion amongst his followers, and to some, even had godlike status. Born into a theatrical family, Wagner’s boyhood dream was to be a poet and playwright, but at the age of 15 he was so overwhelmed by Beethoven’s music that he decided to become a composer. Wagner was always to state that after witnessing rehearsals and a performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony he could find “no event that produced so profound an impression on me.” With only three years of formal training in music theory, Wagner was mainly self-taught, and he never mastered an instrument. Wagner led a tumultuous personal life. He ran up countless debts that were rarely paid off; illegitimate children; multiple affairs; and several marriages, with his final marriage to Cosima von Bülow, 24 years younger than Wagner, the wife of his conductor friend, and the illegitimate daughter of Franz Liszt. During his early twenties, Wagner conducted in small German theaters and wrote several operas. After spending two miserable years in Paris, he returned to Germany for the production of his first major work, Rienzi. The immense success of the opera launched his career and he became the most famous opera composer and conductor throughout Europe. In addition to two early successful operas, Die Feen (The Faires) and Das Liebersverbot (The Ban on Love), Wagner composed eleven operas which still are part of most opera houses’ repertoire today: Rienzi, The Flying Dutchman, Tannhäuser, Lohengrin, Tristan und Isolde, The Mastersingers of Nürnberg, Parsifal, and The Ring Cycle (a sixteen hour collection of four operas – Das Rheingold¸ Die Walküre, Siegfried, and Götterdämmerung).

About Wagner’s Music Wagner’s compositions, particularly those later in his career, are notable not only for the contrapuntal texture, rich chromaticism, harmonies, and orchestration, but also because his operas have influenced authors, playwrights, philosophers, and theologians. Wagner called his operas music dramas and he considered the opera house a temple in which the spectator should be overwhelmed by music and drama. Within each act of his works there exists a continuous musical flow (Wagner called this “unending melody”), instead of the traditional pauses in an opera created by solos and then recitatives, and narrative sections. Wagner described his vision of opera as a Gesamtkunshtwerk or “total artwork,” in which music, song, dance, poetry, visual art, and stagecraft were unified. Philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer’s deeply pessimistic view of the human condition influenced Wagner, and Wagner’s music was used in Nietzsche’s writings. Writing his own libretti, which he called poems, Wagner based most of his plots on Northern European mythology and legend. In addition to writing for his operas, Wagner authored hundreds of books, poems, and articles covering politics, philosophy, conducting, his autobiography, and a detailed analysis of his own operas. Wagner also changed the logistics of how operas are performed, by having the lights dimmed during performances and using a sunken orchestra pit. More than anything else, however, was Wagner’s concept of leitmotif. A form of musical expression, leitmotif is a short musical idea associated with a person, an object, a scene, or thought in the drama. This concept is a common form of composition today, especially in film music, for example in John Williams’ film scores, characters have specific musical themes associated with them and even certain reoccurring ideas in the story have motifs assigned to them. Wagner’s subjects to his operas, writings, politics, beliefs, and unorthodox lifestyle also made continued on page 48


guest artist

amy little soprano Soprano Amy Little is one of the most sought-after and versatile artists today. This past season Ms. Little performed the role of “Mimi” in the Atlanta Opera’s studio tour of La Boheme. With a busy concert career she was also featured in Handel’s Messiah and solo concerts of sacred songs and standard repertoire. A regular soloist with the Atlanta Opera, Ms. Little’s previous engagements have also included appearances in productions of Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Verdi’s Aida and Il Trovatore, and Carlisle Floyd’s Cold Sassy Tree, and Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro with the Atlanta Baroque Orchestra. In concert, Ms. Little has appeared in performances of Handel’s Messiah, Dubois’ The Seven Last Words of Christ, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and SaintSäens’ Christmas Oratorio, and Vivaldi’s Gloria. Upcoming engagements include performances of Le Nozze di Figaro with Peach State Opera, and performances with the Atlanta Opera, a performance of Brahms’ German Requiem. Originally from Augusta, Georgia, Ms. Little studied at Shorter College in Rome, Georgia. This performance of Mozart’s Requiem marks Ms. Little’s debut with the Helena Symphony. n

Ms. Little appears courtesy of Wade Artist Management (New York, NY).

guest artist

teresa buchholz mezzo soprano Making her debut with the Helena Symphony in a performance of Mozart’s Requiem, Mezzo Soprano Teresa Buchholz is known for her colorful, clear voice, and thoughtful interpretation. After a successful solo debut with The Bard Music Festival in 2008, Ms. Buchholz returned to the festival for a performance featuring the works Brahms and a performance Wagner opera excerpts. Ms. Buchholz made her Carnegie Hall debut in 2012 in a performance of Duruflé’s Requiem. She has also appeared in concert with Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Greenwich Choral Society, East Texas Symphony, Monmouth Civic Chorus, and the Berkshire Bach Society, and several others. She has performed many of the major masterworks, including Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Bach’s Mass in B Minor, Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, Handel’s Messiah. Upcoming solo engagements include performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas, Haydn’s Mass in the Time of War and C.P.E. Bach’s Magnificat with the Fairfield Chorale, Mozart’s Requiem with the Oklahoma Mozart Festival, and a return to the Bard Music Festival. In addition she has appeared with the New Jersey Philomusica, Berkshire Bach Society, and the American Symphony Orchestra at Lincoln Center. Ms. Buchholz’s opera recent appearances include performances of Carmen with the Roanoke Opera, Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor with the Asheville Lyric Opera and the Opera Company of North Carolina, Hansel and Gretel and Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro with the Duke Symphony, and Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice at The Bard Festival, to name a few. A graduate of the Yale University Opera Program, Indiana University, and the University of Northern Iowa, Ms. Buchholz continued her studies with the Santa Fe Opera, the Opera Theatre of St. Louis, and the Natchez Opera. n

Ms. Buchholz appears courtesy of Wade Artist Management (New York, NY). www.helenasymphony.org

47


continued from page 46

him a controversial figure. Even after his death, twentieth century Germany continued to make Wagner politically and socially controversial, mainly because propagandists selectively used Wagner’s comments on Jews, and because Adolf Hitler inflated Wagner’s anti-Semitic views. Some have suggested that Wagner deliberately imposed anti-Semitic characters in his operas. A much debated subject, the overly forthcoming Wagner never stated any intention to caricature Jews in his operas, despite his misguided statements in other writings. Until recently, the state of Israel imposed bans on performing Wagner’s operas, specifically Parsifal which some suggest is a racist opera. In all fairness, Wagner’s notorious anti-Semitic remarks were nothing near the doctrine espoused by Nazism. For Wagner, everything was secondary to his artistic goals. Ironically, it is well established that Wagner is the natural child of his mother’s lover, a Jewish actor named Ludwig Geyer, and not his mother’s husband Carl Wagner. Wagner’s subjects to his operas, writings, politics, beliefs, and unorthodox lifestyle also made him a controversial figure. Even after his death, twentieth century Germany continued to make Wagner politically and socially controversial, mainly because propagandists selectively used Wagner’s comments on Jews, and because Adolf Hitler inflated Wagner’s anti-Semitic views. Some have suggested that Wagner deliberately imposed anti-Semitic characters in his operas. A much debated subject, the overly forthcoming Wagner never stated any intention to caricature Jews in his operas, despite his misguided statements in other writings. Until recently, the state of Israel imposed bans on performing Wagner’s operas, specifically Parsifal which some suggest is a racist opera. In all fairness, Wagner’s notorious anti-Semitic remarks were nothing near the doctrine espoused by Nazism. For Wagner, everything was secondary to his artistic goals. Ironically, it is well established that Wagner is the natural child of his mother’s lover, a Jewish actor named Ludwig Geyer, and not his mother’s husband Carl Wagner. As one of the greatest self-promoters, Wagner was not just a composer, but a phenomenon. As music scholar Bill Parker suggests, Wagner was “a ringmaster and the center attraction of his own one-man circus. By sheer force of personality, if not character, he dominated the musical headlines. He was a driven man who could not stand to not get his way. He would build his own theater and orchestra and create a cult of musicians. He literally established a religion with himself as the savior of music.” Like Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven before him, and Mahler and Stravinsky after him, Wagner transformed music. About The Ring Cycle The plot that spans over four operas (totaling 14-16 hours long) is based on German and Nordic legends where a magic ring forged from gold found in the Rhine River transforms the lives of two generations of gods and demi-gods. Wotan, the chief of the gods, 48

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406.442.1860

steals the Ring, but is forced to hand it over to the giants. Over several generations, Wotan schemes to regain the Ring. The hero Siegfried wins the Ring, but is eventually betrayed and slain. Finally, the Valkyrie Brünnhilde, Siegfried’s lover and Wotan’s estranged daughter, returns the Ring to the Rhine maidens. In the process, the gods and their home, Valhalla, are destroyed. There are, of course, several more characters (including dwarfs, giants, a dragon, and mermaids), sub plots, and themes. Despite the overwhelming similarities, J.R.R. Tolkien denied any influence of Wagner’s Ring Cycle on Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. Using the principal musical themes from The Ring Cycle, American conductor Lorin Maazel arranged a lengthy display of orchestral highlights titled The Ring without Words. “The orchestra – that’s where it all is [in The Ring Cycle] – the text behind the text… its orchestral score…becomes story, legend, song, philosophy in countless cosmic overtones and human undertones.” The orchestral highlights of The Ring Cycle begin with the final scene of the first opera, Das Rheingold (The Rhine Gold). The all-powerful Ring of the Rhine River has been created and Wotan, the ruler of the gods, leads his fellow deities across a rainbow bridge into the newly-completed Valhalla, where they will live as heroes for eternity. Wotan uses the ring made from stolen gold to pay off a giant for building Valhalla; a god strikes a hammer to summon thunder and lightning to clear the way to the hall; and the clouds part to reveal a rainbow bridge. With the horns playing the triumphant Valhalla motif, “The Entry of the Gods into Valhalla” grows in intensity until the gods enter their new home. The action heightens with the second opera, Die Walküre (The Valkyries), which focuses on Wotan’s daughter, the Valkyrie Brünnhilde. The opera’s third act opens with some of the most famous music Wagner ever composed. “The Ride of the Valkyries” depicts the Valkyries, a fierce race of female warriors, gathering at a mountaintop with slain heroes destined for Valhalla. “Wotan’s Farewell” and “Magic Fire Music” takes place as Wotan reprimands his daughter Brünnhilde, and puts her in an enchanted sleep – a spell that can only be broken by someone who does not fear death. The third opera is named for the hero who will rescue Brünnhilde – Siegfried. In Act II of Siegfried, the young hero (Siegfried) slays a dragon, and during the music to “Forest Murmurs,” he learns from the forest birds about the beautiful Brünnhilde. Having freed Brünnhilde from the magical spell, Siegfried’s demise is the subject of the final opera in The Ring Cycle – Götterdämmerung (The Twilight of the Gods). “Siegfried’s Death & Funeral Music” musically depicts how Siegfried was killed in an act of betrayal. Out of grief for her beloved, Brünnhilde rides into the burning funeral pyre and sacrifices herself (Immolation Scene), as the Rhine River floods the scene, cleansing the earth, setting Valhalla on fire – destroying the gods and returning the Ring to its rightful place. n


guest artist

kirk dougherty tenor Tenor Kirk Dougherty made his debut with the Helena Symphony last season in a performance of Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 Originally from Sleepy Hollow, New York, Mr. Dougherty most recently appeared with Tri-Cities Opera (Binghamton, NY), Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre, North Shore Music Festival, Opéra Louisiane, and New York City Chamber Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. Past performances include concerts with Salt Marsh Opera, Greenwich Choral Society, Manhattan Concert Productions, Loon Opera, The Orchestra of St. Peter by the Sea, Bronx Opera, Mercury Opera Rochester, Central City Opera, Opera Saratoga, Missouri Civic Orchestra, Rochester Bach Festival, Cortland Choral Arts Union, and the Delaware Valley Opera, among others. Mr. Dougherty’s opera performances include appearances in Les Contes d’Hoffmann, La Traviata, Gianni Schicchi, L’Elisir d’Amore, CosÍ fan tutteo, The Magic Flute, Lucia di Lammermoor, Gounod’s Faust, and Boris Godunov. Upcoming engagements for Mr. Dougherty include appearances in productions of La Boheme, Carmen, and Babes in Toyland. In addition to training as a resident artist at many festivals, Mr. Dougherty recently a festival artist at Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre, a resident artist at Tri-Cities Opera, a principal artist at Oberlin in Italy, an apprentice artist at Central City Opera, and a singer at the Franz Schubert Institute in Austria. He received the Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance and the Performer’s Certificate in Voice from the Eastman School of Music. n

Mr. Dougherty appears courtesy of Wade Artist Management (New York, NY).

guest artist

joseph flaxman baritone Noted by The New York Times as a singer “with a voice that exudes good health and promise, Baritone Joseph Flaxman has been described as a “robust and powerful” by the New York Daily News. After earning his graduate degree at the Manhattan School of Music, Mr. Flaxman has appeared in productions of Le nozze di Figaro, Così fan tutte, Die Zauberflöte, La Bohème, I Pagliacci, Die Fledermaus, Candide, Madama Butterfly, Gianni Schicchi, Faust, Orpheus in the Underworld, and Rigoletto. Mr. Flaxman has performed with Opera Memphis, Sarasota Opera, Opera Saratoga, Des Moines Metro Opera, Tri-Cities Opera, BARD Summerscape, Ash Lawn Opera, Brevard Music Center, American Opera Projects, Bronx Opera, Chelsea Opera, Opera Company of Brooklyn, Opera Manhattan, the Martina Arroyo Foundation, the Manhattan School of Music, and at Fredonia State University. This performance of Mozart’s Requiem marks Mr. Flaxman’s debut with the Helena Symphony. n

Mr. Flaxman appears courtesy of Wade Artist Management (New York, NY). www.helenasymphony.org

49


ABOUT THE PROGRAM By Allan R. Scott©

wolfgang amadeus mozart Requiem, K. 626

Born: Salzburg, Austria, 27 January 1756 Died: Vienna, Austria, 5 December 1791 About the Composer No other composer has mastered

Mozart’s Requiem, as completed by Franz Xavier Süssmayr, is scored for two basset horns (usually played by clarinets), two bassoons, two trumpets, three trombones, timpani, organ, divided strings, mixed chorus, and soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone solos.

Duration: 50 minutes

every musical form as Mozart did, and done so with such ease. For him, it seemed to be a nuisance to transcribe his musical thoughts onto paper. Like Handel, but to an even higher degree, Mozart would develop and achieve perfection in his imagination before his hand ever began to write. Whereas most composers, even the great Beethoven, would go through countless drafts

Mozart’s operas, The Magic Flute and La Clemenza di Tito premiere

and structure associated with the Classical era that was fathered by composer Franz Joseph Haydn. Mozart’s Death Fifty-five minutes past mid-night, December 5, 1791, the spirit and genius of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart left his ailing body; his tragic, misunderstood life on earth; and left the most controversial and immortal Mozart’s final musical thought (at

draft.

least on paper) is an insight and an

As a child prodigy, Mozart was

enigma to his perception of life. The

immediately recognized as an

world can only speculate to what that

unprecedented musical genius.

is, for in the unfinished Requiem,

Under his father’s tutelage, the young

Mozart’s voice and final spiritual

Mozart became a virtuoso performer

testament will remain unfinished.

Europe, performing for dignitaries,

Priestly Riots occur in Birmingham, England

scores exhibited an order, balance,

work, Mozart’s first draft was his final

symphony and had toured most of

Vermont becomes the 14th U.S. state

the centers of thought, Mozart’s

piece of music in all of history.

age of nine, he had composed his first

Bank of U.S. and U.S. Mint are established

when liberty and fraternity were

and revisions before completing a

on the keyboard and violin. By the

parallel events / 1791

American and French Revolutions,

royalty, and prominent composers of the day, who were simply awed by the youth’s abilities and musical imagination. During his brief 35 years, Mozart composed over 600 works, including dozens of operas (both comic and dramatic operas), many mass settings, choral works, songs, ballets, 41 symphonies (the last three of which some believe Mozart never heard and are considered to be his

Mozart seemed to be in good health up until a few months before his death. Romantic embellishments, such as being poisoned by his colleague Antonio Salieri or eating rotten pork, have brought attention to Mozart’s death at the age of 35, especially due to Peter Shaffer’s play and film Amadeus. Since Mozart was buried in a common grave (as was the custom for middle class at the time), no autopsy of his remains can be performed, and medical professionals can only make educated guesses about the cause of Mozart’s death. Most agree that the actual

The world’s first Sunday newspaper, The Observer, is first published in Britain

finest), divertimentos, instrumental

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart dies

concertos, and other concertos for

Pianist Carl Czerny, inventor Samuel Morse, chemist John Mercer, Mozart’s sixth child Franz Xavier, and 15th U.S. President James Buchanan are born

flute, clarinet, bassoon, horn, a new

2010, medical professionals have

arrangement of Handel’s Messiah,

concluded that Mozart suffered

and a Requiem, his final work.

from perhaps rheumatic fever, brain

50

dances, marches, serenades, sonatas, 31 piano concertos, five violin

Born into the Age of Enlightenment – the era of the

cause of death was kidney failure, but the reason why his kidneys shut down is not certain. As recent as

hemorrhage, pneumonia, or another type of infection, such as strep throat.


About the Requiem

sketch out nearly all of the vocal lines and much of

Mozart actually had several works he needed to

the figured bass line (that provides the harmonic and

complete before he could begin composing his

rhythmic structure) for most of the Requiem, but the

Requiem. The strange circumstances in which

remaining eleven movements were left incomplete.

Mozart’s Requiem have stumped historians in terms

The essential origins (and genius) of the Requiem

of the origins of the actual music contained in the

were laid out in piecemeal by Mozart, including

Requiem. Living as a struggling musician, Mozart was forced to take nearly every commission that was offered. He was approached by a stranger acting on behalf of an anonymous patron who wished to commission Mozart to write a Requiem mass. Today we know that the mysterious benefactor was Count Franz von Walsegg-Stuppach, who delighted in copying original scores of other composers and passing them off as his own at concerts in his home. To secure his anonymity Walsegg always sent an agent on his behalf to Mozart’s residence, usually unannounced. The visits had the hallmarks of the supernatural for Mozart, who was prone to superstitions and possibly sensed his own death. Mozart had already become terminally ill when he started composing the Requiem. While he was generally in good spirits, he composed much of the work while in bed. Because he was given a down payment in advance for the work, Mozart’s wife Constanze, had to ensure that the Requiem was completed and delivered to the mysterious benefactor before news traveled about her husband’s death. Constanze gave the work to several composers who made minor additions to the Requiem, but made very little headway in completing work because they knew any original ideas they might bring to the work would never stand up to Mozart’s writing. Finally, the Requiem was given to Mozart’s student Franz Xavier Süssmayr. As one of Mozart’s more promising

the famous trombone solo in the section, and passages of most of the inner movements. Nothing at all, however, remains of Mozart’s ideas for the closing sections of the work. Using dark colors in the orchestra (no flutes, oboes, or horns are used at all), it is the chorus, along with the quartet of solo voices, that drives the entire Requiem. The work has some of the most incredible moments in all of music, including sighing strings, regal rhythms, and most of all an overall sense of judgment through the drawn out section of the Dies irae. A copy of the completed score was copied before delivering it to Count Walsegg’s messenger, and no mention was made of Mozart not completing the work himself. Among Mozart’s circle, however, the truth was well known. Consequently the authenticity of the work was questioned for several decades. Even though Mozart discussed the work at length with Süssmayr, and it is very likely Mozart passed on much of the music in his head that was yet to be written down, it can never truly be known what parts were Mozart’s and what parts were original from Süssmayr. With a twist of fate and heart-breaking beauty, Mozart’s last measures he ever composed were the first eight bars of the Lacrymosa – “the day of tears and mourning, when ashes shall rise…” “In our own time,” suggests program annotator Steven Lowe, “Mozart’s Requiem has attained

students, Süssmayr spent many of Mozart’s final

the status of a cultural icon, artistically because

days with him and they discussed the Requiem at

of its exploration and expression of the full range

some length, including the orchestration and the

of human emotion, and historically because of its

layout of the movements.

poignant around-the-world performances on the

Astonishingly, only the opening movement, the Kyrie, was completely finished by Mozart. He did

first anniversary of the horrific events of September 11, 2001.” n

wE’ll kEEp yoUR tEcHnology woRking HARMONIOUSLY DUanE JoHnson, ownER

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51


THANK YOU FOR YOUR CONTINUING SUPPORT, LOYALTY AND GENEROSITY

The revenue of the Helena Symphony comes from a variety of important sources: donations, performance proceeds, program advertising, concert sponsorships, grants, patron-planned annuities, the Montana Cultural Trust, and the Helena Symphony Foundation. This year, we honor all who give by naming the various gift levels with the minerals and precious gemstones from the state of Montana. The Helena Symphony is grateful to all who generously give allowing us to truly create community through music here in the Treasure State Please note: Donor list includes individual cash donations or in-kind contributions up through 1 October 2012.

sapphire $25,000 and above Anonymous Janet Brosius & James Carkulis Eleanor Parker Exergy Development Group Joan Poston

diamond $15,000 to $24,999 Anonymous Pamela Bompart

palladium $10,000 to $14,999 Esther B. Collishaw Foundation Jack Collishaw Linda Knoblock Treacy Foundation

platinum $5,000 to $9,999 Boeing Company Kathy Bramer City of Helena Helena Community Credit Union Susan & Scott Mainwaring Mary D. Munger Linda & Lew Reeves Maestro Allan R. Scott Student Assistance Foundation

gold $1,000 to $4,999 Allegra American Chemet Corporation Anderson ZurMuehlen Anonymous ATA Corporation Dr. & Mrs. William Ballinger Jeanne & Ronald Baldwin 52

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Lora & Stephen Behlmer Peter Berry Vanessa & Gordon Brittan Toni & Clark Broadbent Susan & C. Franklin Brookhart James Burkholder Dana Hillyer & Robert Caldwell Beth & Russell Cargo SiSi & Wil Carroll Carolyn & Ward Cole CTA Architects Engineers DBC Solutions Deloitte Consulting Doubek, Pyfer, & Fox, LLP Dick Anderson Construction Luke Duran* Doubek & Pyfer Law Firm Edge Marketing & Design* Montana Credit Union Network Frozen Moose* Lori and Warren Dupuis Elizabeth and Jeffrey A. Goldes Gary and Jill Guthrie Barb Howe & Jim Hunt Peter Johnson Marie Kall Linda and Pat Keim Laurie Lamson Lewis & Clark County Patty & Joseph Mazurek The Montana Club New West Health Services Nancy & Alan Nicholson Sue Northup Lucy Dayton & Mark O’Keefe Cookie & Robert Pfeffer Rick Pyfer J. Anne & Joseph Roberts Joyce Schillinger Harlan & William Shropshire Peter W. Sullivan Sullivan Financial Group Scottie & Thomas Trebon U.S. Bancorp Foundation Valley Bank Van’s Thrift Way* Betsey & Bill War

406.442.1860

silver

copper

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American Federal Savings Bank Anonymous Wanita & Glen Berg Fay & David Buness Colleen & Mike Casey Valerie & John Cook Kori & Steve Dee Jean A. Davis Diana & Tom Dowling Donna & Donald Eisenmenger Sarah & John Etchart Lisa & Thomas Evans First Interstate Bank First Security Bank Robert Fitzgerald Susan & Robert Ganter Leila Goldes Libby & Jeff Goldes

Charles Aagenes Jane Amadahl Sally & Clyde Angove Anonymous Ellen Arguimbau ArtBeats Tanya Ask Raymond Bell Margaret Bentwood Birds & Beasleys Beverly Black Janice & Peter E. Bogy Marie & Kent Brown Drea & Richard Brown Joyce & Raymond Brown Donna Burgess Amie Butler Ross W. Cannon Cannon Law Firm Loretta & Lonzo Carter Shirley & Michael Chovanak Carmen & Julius Christianson Sherry Cladouhos Carrie & Carr Cleveland Donna & James H. Cloud Samantha Sanchez & Robert T. Coulter Crowley Fleck Attorneys Bruce Desonia Colleen & Curtis Drake Kathy & Larry Dreyer Bruce Duenkler Joan & Jon Eaton Kay & Tom Ellerhoff Josh Elliott Karen Fairbrother Louise & Barry Ferst Judith & Fred Flanders John Flink Philip Forbes Robert Fox Chelsey Frank Lorretta Lynde & Robert Fusie Sue & Robert Ganter Jacqueline L. Gibson Ann Gilbert Elizabeth & Jeff Goldes

In honor of the anniversaries of Leila & Joe Goldes and Karrie & Gary Fairbrother

Marie & Denny Haywood Dora & Stan Howard Lois & Dave Hudson Marilyn Hudson Susan & Dale G. Johnson Betty Jones Pamela & Alan Joscelyn Kevin R. Kelley Kiwanis Foundation Tatiana & Ron Lukenbill Joseph McCullough Marcy & Daniel McLean Teri & Andrew Michel Max Milton Morrison Maierle, Inc. Montana Community Foundation Bobbi Murphy Dana S. & John Nehring Diana Nickman Amy & Eric Palmer Robert Peccia & Associates Sterling Poston Rick Pyfer Joan & Charles E. Rolling Thea Lou Seese Nell & Roger Smith Joan & Dennis Taylor


Mary Goodman Elizabeth Gundersen Rev. Joseph D. Harrington Ann Harris Barbara Harris Judy & Bruce Hart Helena Ambassadors Gail & Arch Hewitt Karen Hicks Marie & Richard Hopkins Harry Houze Dora & Stan Howard Lois Hughes Hughes, Kellner, Sullivan, & Alke, PLLP William Hunt, Sr. Barbara Hunter Marie & Vilibald Jenko Mary I. & Steve Johnson Riley Johnson Cedron Jones Natalie & David Jordan Janet Kampana Barbara Kenny Janet Kenny Alicia & Kurt Kubicka Jo Lasich Sue Clark & Ron Lee Randi Levin Kathy Linton Mary Madison Michelle Maltese Virginia Markell Russell E. Martin Catherine M. Mathews Carol McKerrow Beth & Warren McCullough Marsha McFarland Diana McVey Judy Meadows Billie Jo Meglen John Michelotti Wayne Miller Genevieve & Robert F. Morgan Carolyn Moyer Curry Moyer Gwynn & John Mundinger Dana & Jonathan Nehring Linda & Ralph Nelson Roberta & Ron Nelson Nicholson Inc. J. Andrew Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Neill Janet & Ed Olson Katherine Orr Heather Otten & Craig Stassen Mary & Myron Pitch Power Townsend John Predergast Mary Pyfer Marvin Ratcliff Julie & Tim Reardon Velma Reber Karla Ritten Irene Roberts

Carol J. & William C. Roberts Uros Roessmann Norman Rognlie Joan & Charles Rolling Lee & Phil Rostad Carole Sandin S.E.B.L.L.C. Ann & John Schaller Darien & Roger Scott Laurie Ekanger & William Shupe Lu Ann & John Smith State Employees (United Way) Gordon Stockstad Carolyn Straub Jack Stults Margaret Swanson Barbara & Thomas Tobin Scottie & Thomas Trebon Jeanne & Chris Tweeten Cindy Utterback Shirley J. Warehime Richard Weaver Donna Weiner Roy A. Wells Coral White Mary L. Williams David Wilson

iron Up to $99 Marika & Gustav Adamek Anonymous Ruth & John Anderson Lana & Charles Anderson Norma Anderson Kathi Lytle Bare Andrea R. & Robert J. Bateen Nancy & Wayne Beckman Raymond Bell Jane Benson Carol Bishoff Mait & John Board Barbara Bonifas Bonnie Bowler Jan & Bill Brown Joyce & Ray Brown Steve Browning Joy Bruck Susan & Brett Brunner Martha & Guido Bugni Ellen Bush Daniel Byrd Ann & Gerald Byrd Isaiah Cech Therese Chart Juliann L. Clum Connie & Charles Conley Jannis Conselyea Sharon & Terry Copenhaver Julie Cougill J.M. Craig Eddy A. Crowley

Crowley Dentistry Kim & Matthew Dale James Darr Victoria Dee John Delano Ann & David Desch Chris Deveny Pamela & Stanley Duensing Elizabeth & Kenneth Eden Russell Ehman Laurie Ekanger Marianne & Daniel Fiehrer First Security Bank Dennis Flynn Joyce & Jesse Franzen Esther Fuehrer Christopher Fuller Renae Goltz Sandy & Reginald Goodwin Colleen Grass Bettie and James Greytak Kathryn Grimes Ruth Ann & Dave Hansen Dorothy Harper Ann Harris John Helzer Gretchen & Scott Hibbard Sheila & James D. Hill Ronald Hull Harry Israel Gordon Jackson Maria & William Jenko Kelly Johns Howard Johnson Richard Juhnke Christine Kaufman & Pat Kemp Dorathy Kendall Thomas Kimmel Linda & Jeff Kindrick Virginia Knight Sharlene & Kenneth Kolb Sharon & Mark Langdorf Kris Larson Jennifer Lowry Beverly R. Magley James J. Maher Sunny Ray & Steve Mandeville Lyle Manley Barbara Martin Carole Massman Cheri & Steven Matthes Cynthia & Frank Mayo Kristen McDaniel Jacqueline McKenna Kay McOmber Sandy & Erich Merdinger Colleen & James Mockler Maxine Morehouse Aidan Myhre Katherine & Stephen Myers Monica Ness Dianne Nickman

Joy and Gary Novota Ann Wilsack & David Orndoff Shirley Palmer Steve Palmer Becky Piske Elizabeth Poletti Jo Ann Prost Marvin Ratcliff Jim Reynolds Dorothy Rollins Susan & Bob Russell Richard Sargent T.C. & T.A. Sauer Joanne & John Schaller Hailey Paige Scott Barbara Squeri Joseph Stefaniak Lois Steinbeck Ward Stiles Betty Stinchfield Elizabeth & Robert Swanberg Margaret Swanson Beverly Tatz Kay & Jack Taylor Marty & Richard Thieltges Shirley Thomas Tom Twichel Barbara Wagner Carol Westine Marilyn & James Williams David K. W. Wilson Sheena Wilson Sue Duane Wright Cindy Yarberry Hugh Zackheim

in memoriam In memory of Jean Baucus

Dr. & Mrs. William Ballinger J.M. Craig First Security Bank Leila Goldes Stanley Kaleczyc Linda Knoblock Claudia Thorsrud

In memory of Jacqueline L. Gibson Gail Brockbank Dana Hillyer & Robert Caldwell Judy & Phil Campbell Linda Knoblock Paulette Kohman David Orndoff Betsey & Bill War

* = In Kind Donation

Thank You. www.helenasymphony.org

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Symphony 2012 2013 Season Program