Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra Young Personâ€™s Concerts November 9, 2012 Featuring: The Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Maestro Stuart Malina with special guest soloist, Julia Rosenbaum, a 17-year old cellist from Potomac, Maryland and winner of the Rodney and Lorna Sawatsky Rising Stars Concerto Competition
Sponsored by The Hathaway Family Foundation
E M CO e L E W o th t so h
How to be a good audience member Etiquette is a big word that means “manners.” Just about everyone at a concert has a certain set of “manners” to follow. The musicians on stage have a certain set of rules they follow, even down to their clothing so that they all look as if they are part of one large instrument—the orchestra! They take direction from their leader, the concertmaster, so they know when to sit and stand, and when to tune their instruments. The conductor follows certain rules so that when he/she takes the stage, all are ready for his first downbeat. All of the orchestra members on stage are expected to follow directions of the conductor. Most of the time during the concert, the conductor is giving the directions by using his/her baton. Following the final notes of a piece of music, the director will usually signal the concertmaster to stand. The rest of the orchestra follows the concertmaster’s lead. Sometimes the conductor will ask a member of the orchestra to stand alone. This is usually to give the audience the chance to thank that player for a particularly well-done solo or very exposed part. Audience thanks usually comes in the form of applause. It is important that audience members remain quiet during the performance. Since music is mostly a listening activity, any extra sounds that are not part of the music can get in the way of the music. 2
Attending a Young Peopleâ€™s Concert Before You Take Your Seat: 1. Take care of all rest room needs. 2. Leave all food, drink, and gum outside the concert hall. 3. Leave all cameras and recording devices outside the hall as well. There are strict copyright guidelines about recording concerts, and even the symphony pays an annual licensing fee to be able to perform the copyrighted music. 4. Turn off all cell phones, pages, watch sounds, alarms, or anything that might make a noise. The only sounds that should be heard are the ones that appear in the musical score (and the audience reaction after the music).
Once You Take Your Seat: 1. Think about things you learned at school before the concert. 2. Show appreciation by applauding when the concertmaster enters to tune the orchestra, and applaud again when the conductor enters the stage. 3. Watch the conductor carefully to see the cues he gives the orchestra to get them to play the music they have rehearsed. 4. Remain seated and quiet while the musicians are playing. Be sure to sit without fidgeting so you donâ€™t distract your neighbors or the performers on stage. Sometimes the conductor may ask you to participate by clapping along or singing along. Take your cue on this from the conductor, just as the orchestra members do. 5. Show appreciation by applauding at the end of compositions. If you really like a particular musical selection, it is also acceptable to stand as you clap. This shows the orchestra that you thought their performance was very well done. 3
Music / concert lesson Theme and Variations in Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme Rococo is probably not a word that you use in everyday conversation. It’s kind of fun to say: “Row ko ko”. The name describes a style of art, architecture, decorative art, painting, and music. It also defines a specific artistic period, the early 18th century. If there was a way to add more scrolls, leaves, flowers and other forms of ornamentation to a somewhat simple form, the Rococo period did just that. In short, Rococo means very elaborate and complicated. So can you guess what might happen in a piece called Variations on a Rococo Theme? If you’ve guessed that a rather simple melody is replayed several different and excessively elaborate ways, you are correct! Here are some examples of Rococo style in art and architecture:
Crazily ornate Rococo room!
Hereâ€™s a fun exercise for all you budding interior designers. Take a look at the Rococo room on page 4 and using the Rococo elements, try designing your own chair with Rococo influcence.
Name: ___________________________ School: ________________________ Class: _____________ 5
When you are listening to a piece of music, the theme is the important musical phrase, a set of notes that create a melody. From that beginning melody, variations (changes) may be created by the composer. In the case of the Variations on a Rococo Theme, the piece you will hear the Harrisburg Symphony playing with guest cello soloist, Julia Rosenbaum, you will hear first, the theme, and then, seven variations on that theme. The music barely stops – that is, there are no movements or dividing sections in this piece. But there are seven different ways to play a variation of the original theme. You will get to hear them if you listen very closely. The piece lasts almost 20 minutes. This may seem like a long time but if you use your best concentration and listening skills, Variations on a Rococo Theme can be like a puzzle and you are the puzzle master. Can you find the spots where the changes take place? We’ve included a youtube video that is over twenty years old for you to listen and watch Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme. You may have heard of the famous cellist, YoYo Ma. He is the soloist in this performance. Julia Rosenbaum will be playing the cello when you hear the Harrisburg Symphony playing the same piece on November 9 at the Forum. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iN184Ytzmpc
If you think of Variations on a Rococo Theme as a puzzle, listen to the YouTube video and try to figure out where the music changes – the places in the music where a new variation begins. Fascinating Fact about Pyotr Ilych Tchaikovsky: He had a very difficult life. Facing financial ruin and emotional breakdown, Tchaikovsky was rescued by a rich widow, Nadezhda von Meck. She agreed to provide him with a generous income on the condition that they never meet but communicate only by letter. Note that while Tchaikovsky wrote the piece called Variations on a Rococo Theme, he did not compose during the musical period thought of as the Rococo. Tchaikovsky lived and worked nearly a century later (1843-1893). He was honoring a style of music that he found particularly interesting and beautiful.
How to end a Symphony? Two very different composers are on the Young Person’s Concert menu for the November 9th concert: Franz Josef Haydn (1732-1809) and Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975). Haydn was a leading composer of the Classical period and a leader in developing the musical form we have come to know as “the symphony”. He wrote many types of music, but is probably most famous for his many symphonies - 108 in total. We are taking a look at Symphony No. 102 in this concert. Shostakovich was a 20th Century Russian (Soviet) composer. His Symphony No. 6 is the one we are listening to in this concert. Symphonic form in 1794, when Haydn’s Symphony No. 102 was written, normally meant four movements or parts to the piece. The Finale or final movement of Symphony No. 102 by Haydn is the fourth and it is a very rapid (called Presto) movement that reminds us of a fast dance. In fact, movement three of Symphony No 102 is called Menuet (minuet, a popular form of classical dance). Haydn finished his Symphony No. 102 with a very fast and exciting piece of dance music. As the fourth (finale/presto) movement of Haydn’s symphony is played, try to hear the repeating dance themes as you listen. Haydn’s Symphony No. 102 mvt. 4 Presto/Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SZA44-L-WUo&feature=related Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 6 also ends with a presto (fast) movement. Written in three movements (parts) instead of four (remember Haydn’s symphony had 4), Shostakovich was composing in a very different time and place. That he lived in the Soviet Union through the Russian Revolution, caused him to write music that was very political in nature. It was important that the music reflect the character of the Russian Communist party and that meant that composers were encouraged (and perhaps forced?) to make symphonic music that the people would recognize. That Shostakovich was able to create within the constraints the government placed on him, was a true sign of his musical genius. His Finale/Presto movement from Symphony No. 6 is sometimes jokingly referred to as “the Moscow Circus”. Moscow, as you may know, is the Russian capital city. And you know what a circus is! Listen to “the Moscow Circus” here. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVvl4U2wVF4 7
During the concert It is very important to LISTEN during our Young Person’s Concerts and to be an ACTIVE LISTENER. In order to be an active listener you must pay attention to the performance very carefully. You cannot allow yourself to become distracted by whatever else may be going on around you. Nor can you allow yourself to get bored, and lose focus on what is happening on the stage. There are key elements of active listening. They all help you get to hear what is being presented to you. 1. Pay attention. Give the orchestra your undivided attention. Try to put aside distracting thoughts. Avoid being distracted by those around you. Refrain from side conversations when listening in a group setting. 2. Show that you are listening. Sit quietly and attentively. As a listener/audience member your role is to listen, learn and enjoy. 3. Respond appropriately. Active listening is a model for respect and understanding. You are gaining information and perspective. Clap when the performers have finished playing to show appreciation for the performance you just heard.
After the concert Most learning happens best when we reflect upon our experiences. Here are some ways you can follow up and reflect on the concert: • Ask students to write a letter to Maestro Malina or a player in the orchestra or draw a picture inspired by the concert and what they learned. • Ask students to create a “postcard to send home”, with a picture drawn from the concert on the front, and a message on the back. • Ask students to create a picture about their favorite instrument - do they like the violin? did they like the featured instrument the cello? do they like trumpets? percussion?
How to make the most of your trip to see the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra: Before the concert: • Make sure you get a good night of sleep before the big day! It’s no fun to feel cranky at the concert! • Eat a good breakfast! Since you might not be eating at the usual time, it’s important to come full. Nobody concentrates well on an empty stomach! • Use the restroom at school before you leave. Leaving the concert in the middle of the performance means you might miss something and it can be distracting to others who are trying to listen! And the facilities at the Forum are very limited! • Leave your backpack at school. • Don’t chew gum or bring any food or drinks with you into the hall. The Forum prohibits food and beverages inside the auditorium.
When you get to the Forum: • Stay with your group or class and don’t wander off without an adult chaperone. Being in a new place makes it easy to get lost! • Be as quiet as possible so that you can hear directions and know where to go. There will be ushers to help you get seated, and you need to listen to their instructions! • If you have a coat with you, fold it and sit on it or place it under your seat. Being too hot in a concert can make you very sleepy!
While the music is playing: • Please; no talking while the music is playing. Talking, even whispering, is very distracting to others who are trying to listen. • You can silently conduct along with Maestro Malina, or move gently in your seat with the music. • Stay in your seat.
How do you know when to clap? • Sometimes a piece of music only SOUNDS like it is over, even when it’s not! You’ll know it’s time to clap when the musicians put down their instruments and Maestro Malina puts down his baton. 9