August 2022 | Concert Program

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CONCERT PROGRAM

AUGUST 2022 N E W WO R L D SY M P H O N Y H A R O L D I N I TA LY

S T R AV I N S K Y ’ S BA L L E T S

POETRY IN MUSIC

S IBELIUS A ND RAV EL



CONTENTS

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THE MELBOURNE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Acknowledging Country Your MSO

8 12 22 22 28 34

NEW WORLD SYMPHONY

STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS

HAROLD IN ITALY

POETRY IN MUSIC

SIBELIUS AND RAVEL

SUPPORTERS

These concerts may be recorded for future broadcast on MSO.LIVE. Please note audience members are strongly recommended to wear face masks where 1.5m distancing is not possible, however wearing a mask is no longer a requirement for entry. In consideration of your fellow patrons, the MSO thanks you for silencing and dimming the light on your phone.

mso.com.au

(03) 9929 9600


Acknowledging Country In the first project of its kind in Australia, the MSO has developed a musical Acknowledgment of Country with music composed by Yorta Yorta composer Deborah Cheetham AO, featuring Indigenous languages from across Victoria. Generously supported by Helen Macpherson Smith Trust and the Commonwealth Government through the Australian National Commission for UNESCO, the MSO is working in partnership with Short Black Opera and Indigenous language custodians who are generously sharing their cultural knowledge. The Acknowledgement of Country allows us to pay our respects to the traditional owners of the land on which we perform in the language of that country and in the orchestral language of music. Australian National Commission for UNESCO United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

About Long Time Living Here In all the world, only Australia can lay claim to the longest continuing cultures and we celebrate this more today than in any other time since our shared history began. We live each day drawing energy from a land which has been nurtured by the traditional owners for more than 2000 generations. When we acknowledge country we pay respect to the land and to the people in equal measure. As a composer I have specialised in coupling the beauty and diversity of our Indigenous languages with the power and intensity of classical music. In order to compose the music for this Acknowledgement of Country Project I have had the great privilege of working with no fewer than eleven ancient languages from the state of Victoria, including the language of my late Grandmother, Yorta Yorta woman Frances McGee. I pay my deepest respects to the elders and ancestors who are represented in these songs of acknowledgement and to the language custodians who have shared their knowledge and expertise in providing each text. I am so proud of the MSO for initiating this landmark project and grateful that they afforded me the opportunity to make this contribution to the ongoing quest of understanding our belonging in this land.

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— Deborah Cheetham AO


Your MSO

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra Established in 1906, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is Australia’s pre-eminent orchestra and a cornerstone of Victoria’s rich, cultural heritage. Each year, the MSO engages with more than 5 million people, presenting in excess of 180 public events across live performances, TV, radio and online broadcasts, and via its online concert hall, MSO.LIVE, with audiences in 56 countries. With a reputation for excellence, versatility and innovation, the MSO works with culturally diverse and First Nations leaders to build community and deliver music to people across Melbourne, the state of Victoria and around the world. In 2022, the MSO ‘s new Chief Conductor, Jaime Martín has ushered in an exciting new phase in the Orchestra’s history. Maestro Martín joins an Artistic Family that includes Principal Guest Conductor Xian Zhang, Principal Conductor in Residence, Benjamin Northey, Conductor Laureate, Sir Andrew Davis CBE, Composer in Residence, Paul Grabowsky and Young Artist in Association, Christian Li. The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra respectfully acknowledges the people of the Eastern Kulin Nations, on whose un‑ceded lands we honour the continuation of the oldest music practice in the world.

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Your MSO

Your MSO Jaime Martín

Chief Conductor Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO#

Xian Zhang

Principal Guest Conductor

Benjamin Northey Principal Conductor in Residence

Carlo Antonioli Cybec Assistant Conductor Fellow

Sir Andrew Davis Conductor Laureate

Hiroyuki Iwaki †

Conductor Laureate (1974–2006)

FIRST VIOLINS Dale Barltrop

Concertmaster David Li AM and Angela Li#

Sophie Rowell

Concertmaster The Ullmer Family Foundation#

Tair Khisambeev

Assistant Concertmaster Di Jameson and Frank Mercurio#

Peter Edwards

Assistant Principal

Kirsty Bremner Sarah Curro Peter Fellin Deborah Goodall Lorraine Hook Anne-Marie Johnson Kirstin Kenny Eleanor Mancini Mark Mogilevski Michelle Ruffolo Kathryn Taylor

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SECOND VIOLINS

CELLOS

Matthew Tomkins

David Berlin

Robert Macindoe

Rachael Tobin

Monica Curro

Miranda Brockman

Principal The Gross Foundation# Associate Principal Assistant Principal Danny Gorog and Lindy Susskind#

Mary Allison Isin Cakmakcioglu Tiffany Cheng Glenn Sedgwick#

Freya Franzen Cong Gu Andrew Hall Isy Wasserman Philippa West

Andrew Dudgeon AM#

Patrick Wong Roger Young

Shane Buggle and Rosie Callanan#

VIOLAS Christopher Moore Principal Di Jameson and Frank Mercurio#

Lauren Brigden Katharine Brockman Anthony Chataway

Dr Elizabeth E Lewis AM#

Gabrielle Halloran Trevor Jones Anne Neil#

Fiona Sargeant

Learn more about our musicians on the MSO website.

Principal Hyon Ju Newman# Associate Principal Geelong Friends of the MSO#

Rohan de Korte

Andrew Dudgeon AM#

Sarah Morse Angela Sargeant Michelle Wood

Andrew and Judy Rogers#

DOUBLE BASSES Benjamin Hanlon

Frank Mercurio and Di Jameson#

Rohan Dasika Suzanne Lee Stephen Newton FLUTES Prudence Davis Principal Anonymous#

Wendy Clarke

Associate Principal

Sarah Beggs PICCOLO Andrew Macleod Principal


Ann Blackburn

The Rosemary Norman Foundation#

COR ANGLAIS Michael Pisani

Principal

CLARINETS David Thomas

Principal

Philip Arkinstall

Associate Principal

HORNS Nicolas Fleury

Principal Margaret Jackson AC#

Saul Lewis

Principal Third The Hon Michael Watt QC and Cecilie Hall#

Abbey Edlin

Nereda Hanlon and Michael Hanlon AM#

Trinette McClimont Rachel Shaw TRUMPETS

BASS CLARINET

Owen Morris

Jon Craven

Principal

BASSOONS

Associate Principal Glenn Sedgwick#

Jack Schiller

Principal

Elise Millman

Associate Principal

Natasha Thomas

Dr Martin Tymms and Patricia Nilsson#

John Arcaro Anonymous#

Robert Cossom

Drs Rhyl Wade and Clem Gruen#

HARP Yinuo Mu Principal

Shane Hooton William Evans Rosie Turner

John and Diana Frew#

TROMBONES Richard Shirley Mike Szabo

CONTRABASSOON

Principal Bass Trombone

Brock Imison

TUBA

Principal

PERCUSSION

Gary McPherson#

Craig Hill

Principal

TIMPANI

Your MSO

OBOES

Timothy Buzbee

Principal

# Position supported by

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NEW WORLD SYMPHONY Monday 1 August / 6.30pm Arts Centre Melbourne, Hamer Hall

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra Jaime Martín conductor DVOŘÁK Symphony No.9 From the New World

Our musical Acknowledgment of Country, Long Time Living Here by Deborah Cheetham AO, will be performed at this concert. Running time: Approximately 45 minutes, no interval.


NEW WORLD SYMPHONY | 1 August

Jaime Martín conductor The MSO’s Chief Conductor is supported by Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO.

Jaime Martín commenced his tenure as MSO Chief Conductor in 2022, investing the Orchestra with prodigious musical creativity and momentum. In September 2019 Jaime Martín became Chief Conductor of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. He has been Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of Gävle Symphony Orchestra since 2013. He was recently announced as the Principal Guest Conductor of the Orquesta y Coro Nacionales de España (Spanish National Orchestra) for the 22/23 season. Having spent many years as a highly regarded flautist, Jaime turned to conducting fulltime in 2013. In recent years Martín has conducted an impressive list of orchestras and has recorded various discs, both as a conductor and as a flautist. Martín is the Artistic Advisor and previous Artistic Director of the Santander Festival. He was also a founding member of the Orquestra de Cadaqués, where he was Chief Conductor from 2012 to 2019. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music, London, where he was a flute professor.

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NEW WORLD SYMPHONY | 1 August

Program Notes ANTONÍN DVOŘÁK

(1841–1904)

Symphony No.9 in E minor From the New World I. Adagio – Allegro molto II. Largo III. Scherzo (Molto vivace) IV. Allegro con fuoco In his last and most celebrated symphony, Antonín Dvořák mingles excitement at the sights and sounds of America with downright homesickness for his native Bohemia. Dvořák had arrived in New York in September 1892 to become director of the National Conservatory of Music, and the symphony was composed between January and May of the following year. Apart from the diplomatic cantata, The American Flag, it was his first composition in the USA. A Czech-American pupil, Josef Jan Kovarík, who travelled with Dvořák to New York, has recounted that when he was to take the score to Anton Seidl, conductor of the New York Philharmonic, for its first performance, the composer paused at the last moment to write on the title page ‘Z Nového sveta’ (From the New World). Significantly, written in Czech rather than the German or English that Seidl or his American audience would have understood, the inscription implied no suggestion that the new work was an ‘American’ symphony (Kovarík was adamant about this) but meant merely ‘Impressions and greetings from the New World’.

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The ‘impressions’ that crowded Dvořák’s mind as he wrote the symphony were, of course, the frenetic bustle of New York, the seething cauldron of humanity in the metropolis, and the folk caught up in its

impersonal whirl – the African-Americans and Native Americans. Above all, he developed a fascination for what he was able to hear of the music of these two races – the plantation songs of Stephen Foster; spirituals sung to him on several occasions by Harry T. Burleigh, a black student at the National Conservatory; transcriptions he was given of some Native American songs, and others he heard at Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. Dvořák claimed in a newspaper interview that the two musics were nearly identical and that their fondness for type of pentatonic scale made them remarkably similar to Scottish music. But it must be acknowledged that his acquaintance with the songs – those of the Native Americans in particular – was distinctly superficial. Dvořák’s fascination with these people stemmed from his reading, some thirty years earlier, Longfellow’s The Song of Hiawatha in a Czech translation. Although he did not persevere with ideas he had for writing an opera on the subject of America, the Hiawatha concept nevertheless surfaced to some extent in this symphony. The great Dvořák scholar Otakar Sourek found the physical manifestations of America embodied mainly in the surging flow and swiftly changing moods of the first and last movements, soaring at times to heights of impressive grandeur. It is in the Largo and Scherzo that Dvořák is said to have admitted drawing on The Song of Hiawatha – Minnehaha’s bleak forest funeral in the slow movement, and the wedding feast and Indians dancing in the Scherzo. The music goes far beyond such flimsy poetic inspiration, however, for the Largo positively aches with the composer’s nostalgia and homesickness, while the Trio of the third movement is an unmistakable Czech dance. Ultimately, the symphony as a whole is far more Czech than American.


NEW WORLD SYMPHONY | 1 August

The very familiarity of the music to most listeners, the facility with which well-remembered tunes appear and reappear, is apt to blur the subtleties of Dvořák’s writing and symphonic construction. Most notable is the way themes for each movement recur in succeeding movements, often skilfully woven into climaxes or codas. Unlike Beethoven, however, in whose Ninth Symphony the ideas of the first three movements are reviewed, only to be rejected and transcended in a towering finale, Dvořák uses his earlier thoughts as a force of structural and spiritual unity, so that in combination they transcend themselves and each other. In the miraculous Largo, the famous and elegiac melody first stated by the solo cor anglais – the melody that later became ‘Goin’ home’ – culminates grandly on trumpets against festive recollections of the two main themes from the first movement. Both first movement themes recur again in the coda of the Scherzo, the first of them (somewhat disguised) actually appearing three times earlier in the movement as well – at the end of the Scherzo section and twice in the transition of the Trio. The development section of the finale contains allusions to the main themes of both Largo and Scherzo, and in the masterly coda the main themes of all three preceding movements are reviewed, that of the fast movement finally engaging in dialogue with the finale’s main subject until cut off by an urgent rush of highly conventional chords. Unexpectedly these lead to a delicate pianissimo wind chord with which the symphony ultimately soars heavenward, freed from earthbound shackles. Anthony Cane © 1994

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Stravinsky’s Ballets Friday 12 August / 7.30pm Saturday 13 August / 7.30pm Arts Centre Melbourne, Hamer Hall Melbourne Symphony Orchestra Jaime Martín conductor With musicians from the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) STRAVINSKY The Firebird STRAVINSKY Petrushka STRAVINSKY The Rite of Spring This performance is part of ANAM and MSO’s Orchestral Training Partnership

Pre-concert talk: 12th and 13th of August at 6:45pm at Hamer Hall. Learn more about the performance at a pre-concert presentation with Andrew Aronowicz. Our musical Acknowledgment of Country, Long Time Living Here by Deborah Cheetham AO, will be performed at this concert. Running time: Approximately 2 hours and 50 minutes including two intervals.


STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS | 12–13 August

Jaime Martín conductor The MSO’s Chief Conductor is supported by Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO.

Jaime Martín commenced his tenure as MSO Chief Conductor in 2022, investing the Orchestra with prodigious musical creativity and momentum. In September 2019 Jaime Martín became Chief Conductor of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. He has been Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of Gävle Symphony Orchestra since 2013. He was recently announced as the Principal Guest Conductor of the Orquesta y Coro Nacionales de España (Spanish National Orchestra) for the 22/23 season. Having spent many years as a highly regarded flautist, Jaime turned to conducting fulltime in 2013. In recent years Martín has conducted an impressive list of orchestras and has recorded various discs, both as a conductor and as a flautist. Martín is the Artistic Advisor and previous Artistic Director of the Santander Festival. He was also a founding member of the Orquestra de Cadaqués, where he was Chief Conductor from 2012 to 2019. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music, London, where he was a flute professor.

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STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS | 12–13 August

The Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) is dedicated to training the most exceptional young classical musicians from Australia and New Zealand. It is the only professional performance training institute of its kind in Australia, and one of few in the world. ANAM musicians fly between the stage and the studio; performing in over 180 events each year and receiving more than 60 hours of one-on-one training and hundreds of hours of coaching from an esteemed Faculty and impressive list of national and international guest artists. From taking meditation classes, singing Bach chorales, laying down a concerto, or building a buzz around their forthcoming gig, to learning how to work a scale, work a fugue, work a room, or work towards securing a vibrant future for classical music. They find themselves sitting cross-legged on the floor with a class of local third graders one day, to performing with the world’s finest artists on stages all across the country the next. With an outstanding track record of success, ANAM alumni work in orchestras and chamber ensembles around the world, performing as soloists, contributing to educating the next generation of musicians, and winning major national and international awards. ANAM aims to inspire these future music leaders and encourages audiences to share the experience.

ANAM Musicians VIOLIN 1

DOUBLE BASS

TRUMPET

Emily Beauchamp Rachael Kwa Natalie Mavridis Harry Egerton

Ben Saffir

Nic Corkeron Joel Walmsley Isabella Thomas

VIOLIN 2 Lynda Latu Liam Freisberg Adrian Biemmi Liam Pilgrim VIOLA Murray Kearney Ben Tao Seb Cayne CELLO 14

Hamish Jamieson Noah Lawrence

FLUTE Laura Cliff OBOE Alexandra King CLARINET Oliver Crofts Clare Fox Dario Scalabrini

TROMBONE Jeremy Mazurek BASS TROMBONE James Littlewood TIMPANI Nathan Gatenby

BASSOON

PERCUSSION

Andre Oberleuter

Aditya Bhat

HORN

CELESTE

Nicola Robinson Stefan Grant

Matthew Garvie


SCRIABIN & SYNAESTHESIA Saturday 3 September 7pm Rosina Auditorium Abbotsford Convent ANAM faculty Timothy Young and ANAM’s pianists sample the fascinating universe of Alexander Scriabin’s piano sonatas.

THE AMERICAN CENTURY Tuesday 20 September 7pm St Kilda Town Hall ANAM faculty Timothy Young and Peter Neville lead a celebration of New World sounds with George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, the original 1924 version, alongside two of Steve Reich’s greatest works.

B O O K N OW

anam.com.au/whats-on


STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS | 12–13 August

Program Notes IGOR STRAVINSKY

(1882–1971)

The Firebird – Complete ballet Introduction Tableau I Kashchei’s enchanted garden The Firebird appears, pursued by Ivan Tsarevich Dance of the Firebird Ivan Tsarevich captures the Firebird Supplication of the Firebird Appearance of thirteen enchanted princesses The princesses play with the golden apples Sudden appearance of Ivan Tsarevich Khorovod (Round Dance) of the princesses Daybreak – Ivan Tsarevich enters the palace of Kashchei Fairy carillon – Appearance of Kashchei’s guardian monsters – Capture of Ivan Tsarevich Arrival of the Demon King Kashchei – Dialogue of Kashchei and Ivan Tsarevich – Intercession of the princesses Appearance of the Firebird Dance of Kashchei’s retinue under the magic spell of the Firebird Infernal dance of the subjects of Kashchei Berceuse of the Firebird Kashchei awakens – Death of Kashchei – Profound darkness Tableau II Disappearance of Kashchei’s palace and sorcery – Reanimation of the Knights who had been turned to stone – General rejoicing

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With the music for The Firebird, the 28-year-old Stravinsky rose from obscurity to celebrity. Scarcely known in his native St Petersburg, where he was perhaps Rimsky-Korsakov’s most gifted student, and quite unknown in Russia as a whole, Stravinsky’s first works were performed, if at all, in small venues and for smaller audiences. But in February 1909 Stravinsky’s short orchestral piece Scherzo fantastique was conducted by Alexander Siloti as part of St Petersburg’s main orchestral series. This was to prove a crucial turning-point in the young composer’s career – in the audience was Sergei Diaghilev, who was forming a new ballet company, the Ballets Russes, that would combine the creative daring of dancers, choreographers, painters, composers and writers in a bold new artistic venture. Impressed by Stravinsky’s music, Diaghilev immediately put the young composer to the test, commissioning him to orchestrate some short pieces by Chopin and Grieg for two separate productions in the opening season of the Ballet Russes. When Stravinsky fulfilled this first commission to Diaghilev’s satisfaction, a bolder collaboration was offered. In preparation for the Ballets Russes’ second season in Paris in 1910, Diaghilev had approached the more celebrated composer Anatol Liadov to write a ballet based on The Firebird scenario. When this fell through, at the end of the 1909 northern summer Stravinsky received a telegram inviting him to take on the ballet. It would not be overstating the case to say that, in the longer term, this telegram changed the course of 20th century musical history. And yet at the time Stravinsky was doubtful that he could complete such a high-profile – and, for a young, largely untried composer, risky – commission at short notice. But it was an offer which he could not refuse. Not


Predictably, Diaghilev was impressed. ‘Keep a close eye on him,’ Diaghilev is reported to have told his leading dancer Tamara Karsavina during a rehearsal at the Paris Opera. ‘He is about to become famous.’ And so it was to prove. Perhaps indicating that at the time of this surprisingly innovative work Stravinsky was still effectively a student, the score is dedicated to his teacher, Rimsky-Korsakov. And, as was the case so often with Rimsky-Korsakov himself, Stravinsky’s source of inspiration was Russia’s folk heritage: the story of the Firebird is based on a conflation of the various Russian legends concerning the young Ivan Tsarevich who, with the assistance of the Firebird, liberates the Princess from the evil sorcerer Kashchei. Gabriel Pierné conducted the premiere at the Paris Opera on 25 June 1910, with the choreography by Fokine (who himself danced the part of Ivan Tsarevich) and with Tamara Karsavina as the Firebird. The Romantically inclined score is filled with the most extraordinary orchestral colours and lavish instrumental effects, outdoing even the master Rimsky-Korsakov himself, and it remains one of Stravinsky’s most popular works. For all its virtuosity and innovation, Stravinsky’s score for The Firebird was only the starting-point for the rapid stylistic journey that Stravinsky undertook with Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes. Following on from the ballet’s success, Stravinsky completed the vastly divergent Petrushka and The Rite of Spring in rapid succession, taking his

music into new realms that certainly surprised, and in some cases frightened, its audiences. Indeed, there were times throughout his career when Stravinsky became annoyed at well-wishers who lamented that he had abandoned the lush Romantic sounds of The Firebird so soon, and he was known to refer contemptuously to The Firebird as ‘the lollipop for audiences’. Adapted by Stephanie Sheridan from original notes © Symphony Services Australia

IGOR STRAVINSKY

STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS | 12–13 August

only would it expose his work to an international audience, but he would be collaborating with the legendary dancer and choreographer Michel Fokine and other great artists of the day. He accepted the commission and finished the manuscript score on 18 May 1910, just five weeks before the ballet’s premiere.

Petrushka – Ballet (1947 version) The Shrove-tide Fair Petrushka The Moor The Shrove-tide Fair and the Death of Petrushka Petrushka, first staged in Paris in 1911, may well be the most representative and successful collaboration between Stravinsky and Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes. The visual appearance of the ballet was Russian. Its scenario, by Alexander Benois and the composer, dealt with the universal world of the theatre, and the puppet-with-a-soul Petrushka, as danced by Nijinsky, was pathetic, moving, and brilliant. The music matched all this with a sense of gesture which built on the colouristic inventions of the Russian nationalist composers, but with an originality and modernity all Stravinsky’s own. Petrushka originated in a musical idea of Stravinsky’s, as he explains: ‘I had a vision of a puppet, suddenly endowed with life, exasperating the patience of the orchestra with diabolical cascades of arpeggios, the orchestra in its turn retaliating with menacing fanfares of brass…ending in the sorrowful and querulous collapse of the poor puppet.’ Stravinsky began to sketch this music in 1910, as a piece for piano and orchestra,

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STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS | 12–13 August

which he described as a Konzertstück (‘Concert-piece’). It lacked a title, until one day Stravinsky ‘jumped for joy – Petrushka! The immortal and unhappy hero of all the fairs of all countries: I had found my title!’. The impresario Diaghilev, as soon as Stravinsky described the idea to him, saw its potential as a ballet, and persuaded the composer to transform the music into a full-scale choreographic work. They agreed to set the action of the ballet in the Shrove-tide Fair, the Mardi Gras in St Petersburg, where they both grew up (Benois, in particular, retained a strong affection for this event in which he had participated as a child.) Petrushka is the Russian version of Punch, who, in a stroke of genius on the part of the ballet’s creators, assumes the soulfulness of Pierrot. Although the character is universal, the ballet inhabits the world of Russian folklore, and Stravinsky makes use of Russian tunes and street songs. The dual nature of Petrushka as puppet and sensitive human being is conveyed by bitonality, using unrelated keys and derivations from Rimsky-Korsakov’s synthetic scales. The origins of this seem to be pianistic (one hand on the white keys, one on the black), and the piano part remains very important in the full ballet score, both in the original version and in the revision of the instrumentation and reduction of the number of instruments Stravinsky made in 1947, which is heard tonight.

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In a square in St Petersburg during the carnival in 1830 a showman has set up his puppet theatre. A hurdy-gurdy and a music box compete and clash, then the showman, gaining attention by a cadenza on his flute, brings three puppets to life: Petrushka, the Ballerina, and the Moor. Beginning the Russian Dance, they leave their hooks and join the crowd. In the second tableau Petrushka woos the Ballerina, but she

is repelled by his ugliness and uncouth gestures. In despair Petrushka hurls himself at a portrait of the Showman, tearing a hole in the cardboard wall of his cell. The third tableau opens with the Moor playing with a coconut. He tries to break it with his scimitar. The Ballerina is attracted to the Moor despite his stupidity; she dances to attract him, to a cornet solo and then a waltz; the Moor tries to join in, but cannot manage the triple time! Petrushka, mad with jealousy, bursts in on the love scene which follows. Finally we are back at the fair, in the evening; nursemaids dance, as do a peasant’s performing bear, a rich merchant with two Gypsy girls, a group of coachmen, joined by the nursemaids, then some masqueraders. Suddenly a commotion is noticed in the little theatre: Petrushka runs out, chased by the Moor, who kills him with his scimitar. The Showman, picking up Petrushka, easily convinces everyone that the body is only wood and sawdust. The crowd disperses, but the Showman is terrified to see, above his booth, the ghost of Petrushka threatening and jeering at him. © David Garrett


The Rite of Spring Part 1: L’Adoration de la terre (Adoration of the Earth) Introduction Danse des adolescentes (Dance of the Young Girls) Jeu du rapt (Ritual of Abduction) Rondes printanières (Spring Rounds) Jeux des cités rivales (Games of the Rival Tribes) Cortège du sage (Procession of the Sage) L’Adoration de la terre (Adoration of the Earth) Danse de la terre (Dance of the Earth) Part 2: Le Sacrifice Introduction Cercles mystérieux des adolescentes (Mystic Circles of Young Girls) Glorification de l’élue (Glorification of the Chosen Virgin) Evocation des ancêtres (Evocation of the Ancestors) Action rituelle des ancêtres (Ritual of the Ancestors) Danse sacrale – L’élue (Sacrificial dance – The Chosen Virgin) The trouble started as soon as the solo bassoon began its plaintive version of a Lithuanian folksong. Heckling, spreading from the gallery of the new Théâtre des Champs-Élysées into the stalls, became so loud that the choreographer Nijinsky stood on a chair in the wings shouting directions at the dancers who could no longer hear the orchestra. The theatre’s electrician frantically flicked the house lights on and off to try and settle the audience; there was a brawl and the police had to be called. The orchestra soldiered on and gave what those who could hear it describe as a fine performance.

The riot at The Rite of Spring’s premiere is legendary – scholar Richard Taruskin says that Stravinsky ‘spent the rest of his long life telling lies about it’! But it was not the score that caused a fracas among the Philistines. (Debussy’s Jeux – also premiered by the Ballets Russes – had been booed a fortnight before.) Nijinsky’s choreography (described by Jean Cocteau as ‘automaton-like monotony’) caused the most offence. A year later Pierre Monteux conducted a concert performance, and Stravinsky experienced the success ‘such as composers rarely enjoy’ as he was carried through the streets like a sporting hero on the shoulders of his audience.

STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS | 12–13 August

IGOR STRAVINSKY

The Firebird was a story of princesses, ogres and a magic phoenix; Petrushka’s protagonists are fairground puppets. But in 1910, Stravinsky had a vision of ‘wise elders, seated in a circle, watching a young girl dancing herself to death… to propitiate the god of spring’ and drafted a scenario with the designer Nicholas Roerich. The work is, as scholar Stephen Walsh puts it, ‘a strict “liturgical” sequence, a sequence which, we understand, will always happen this way, with different participants but the same meaning’. Stravinsky’s Russian title for the work is better translated as Holy Spring, and its subtitle is ‘Scenes from Pagan Russia’. Musicologist Paul Griffiths quotes Stravinsky’s long-time assistant Robert Craft’s assertion that the composer ‘repeatedly said that he wrote The Rite of Spring in order “to send everyone” in his Russian past, Tsar, family, instructors, “to hell”’. This suggests that The Rite attempts to be a ‘clean slate’ untouched by the corruptions of musical ‘civilisation’. The composer later said that he was ‘the vessel through which The Rite passed’, and the sketches suggest that many of

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STRAVINSKY’S BALLETS | 12–13 August

his ideas sprang, fully formed, onto the page. At the same time, Stravinsky’s sumptuous orchestration and harmony could not have existed without the music of Glinka and Rimsky-Korsakov; Debussy rightly called the score ‘primitive music with all modern conveniences’. Moreover, Stravinsky long maintained that the opening bassoon melody, whose timbre suggests traditional dudki or reed pipes, was the only folk tune in the score, but the publication of his sketchbooks in 1969 showed that he had copied out several tunes that found their way into the work. These tunes are usually relevant in subject matter to the events of the ballet, but as Stephen Walsh puts it, Stravinsky reduces them ‘to simple essences which could then be used as motives of rhythmic and ostinato treatment’. Walsh goes on to say, ‘What nobody seems to have done before The Rite of Spring was to take dissonant, irregularly formed musical “objects” of very brief extent and release their latent energy by firing them off at one another like so many particles in an atomic accelerator.’ The ‘cells’ that Stravinsky creates out of the simple rhythmic essences of folk tunes are repeated, distorted by the addition of extra beats, interrupted by contrasting cells. The Rite, then, is the ultimate abstraction of Stravinsky’s early ‘Russian’ style, and the foundation for much of his subsequent music. Gordon Kerry © 2005/13

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Harold in Italy Thursday 18 August / 6.30pm Arts Centre Melbourne, Hamer Hall Jaime Martín conductor Christopher Moore viola BERLIOZ Harold in Italy Running time: Approximately 45 minutes, no interval.

Poetry in Music Friday 19 August / 7.30pm Arts Centre Melbourne, Hamer Hall Jaime Martín conductor Christopher Moore viola BERLIOZ Harold in Italy TCHAIKOVSKY Manfred Symphony

Post-concert talk: 18th of August at 7:45pm at Hamer Hall. Learn more about the performance presentation with Megan Steller. Pre-concert talk: 19th of August at 6:45pm. Learn more about the performance at a preconcert presentation with Megan Steller. Our musical Acknowledgment of Country, Long Time Living Here by Deborah Cheetham AO, will be performed at this concert. Running time: Approximately 125 minutes, inc. 20-min interval.


Christopher Moore

The MSO’s Chief Conductor is supported by Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO.

Christopher Moore is supported by Di Jameson and Frank Mercurio.

conductor

Jaime Martín commenced his tenure as MSO Chief Conductor in 2022, investing the Orchestra with prodigious musical creativity and momentum. In September 2019 Jaime Martín became Chief Conductor of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. He has been Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of Gävle Symphony Orchestra since 2013. He was recently announced as the Principal Guest Conductor of the Orquesta y Coro Nacionales de España (Spanish National Orchestra) for the 22/23 season. Having spent many years as a highly regarded flautist, Jaime turned to conducting fulltime in 2013. In recent years Martín has conducted an impressive list of orchestras and has recorded various discs, both as a conductor and as a flautist. Martín is the Artistic Advisor and previous Artistic Director of the Santander Festival. He was also a founding member of the Orquestra de Cadaqués, where he was Chief Conductor from 2012 to 2019. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music, London, where he was a flute professor.

viola

Principal Viola of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Christopher Moore spent nine years travelling the globe as Principal Viola of Australian Chamber Orchestra. As romantic as that sounds, he missed his old chums Mahler, Schoenberg and Adès, and so returned to these and other old friends at the MSO.

HAROLD IN ITALY / POETRY IN MUSIC | 18–19 August

Jaime Martín

Not surprisingly, Christopher’s wife and two daughters are pleased that Papa has hung up his rock star garb and come home to roost like their pet chickens. If you’re lucky, he may hand you a bona fide free-range egg; if you’re unlucky, you’ll be stuck hearing about how much he loves brewing beer and riding his bike into town from the suburbs, in an attempt to prevent his waistline expanding to the size of his chickens’ coop. Christopher Moore plays a viola attributed to Giovanni Paolo Maggini dating from circa 1600–10 AD, loaned anonymously to the MSO.

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HAROLD IN ITALY / POETRY IN MUSIC | 18–19 August

Program Notes HECTOR BERLIOZ

(1803–1869)

Harold in Italy, Op.16 I. Harold in the Mountains: Scenes of Sadness, Happiness and Joy (Adagio – Allegro) II. March of Pilgrims Chanting the Evening Prayer (Allegretto) III. Serenade of an Abruzzi Mountaineer to his Mistress (Allegro assai – Allegretto) IV. Brigands’ Orgy: Memories of past scenes (Finale: Allegro frenetico) Christopher Moore viola The title of this piece conjures up the arch-Romantic Lord Byron, and the hero of his poem Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage. Also figuring in the story is the musician most fascinating to Romantics, a violin virtuoso so extraordinary that some thought he was in league with the devil: Paganini. Berlioz told of receiving the visit, in early 1834, of ‘a man with flowing hair, piercing eyes … haunted by genius’. This was Paganini, who had acquired a Stradivarius viola, and wanted a piece to show it off. When the news got out that Berlioz was writing something for Paganini, it was said to be ‘in the genre of the Fantastic Symphony’, which Paganini had heard shortly before.

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With Paganini as soloist, box office success would be guaranteed, so in Berlioz’s story there was an element of wishful publicity. When it became clear that Paganini would not be playing the premiere, the excuse was given that on seeing the music he discovered there were far too many rests in his part. Berlioz had, as usual, done his own thing. One of the handful of repertoire pieces for viola and orchestra, Harold in Italy is not a concerto, but, as Berlioz’s subtitle indicates, a ‘symphony with a

principal viola [part]’. Berlioz explained: ‘I conceived the idea of writing a series of scenes for the orchestra, in which the viola should find itself involved, like a person more or less in action, always preserving its own individuality.’ The solo viola’s theme, unlike the idée fixe of the Symphonie fantastique, remains virtually unchanging, the orchestra developing and modifying other themes. It personifies the melancholy daydreaming traveller, contemplating Italian scenes and dissolving into them as the soloist is absorbed by the orchestra. The scenes are all in Italy, which in Byron’s poem was only one destination of Harold’s wanderings. The music has more to do with Berlioz’s biography than with Byron’s. As the holder of the Prix de Rome for French composers, Berlioz in 1833 from his Roman base explored the hinterland, especially the Abruzzi mountains. The melancholy opening of ‘Harold in the Mountains’, on cellos and basses, sets the stage for the ‘Harold’ theme, first heard from the orchestra, but soon identified with the solo viola, heralded by harp. Joyful scenes follow in the Allegro. The main theme is revealed in fragments, each adding more until the theme is heard in full. The movement’s brilliant conclusion comes with a gradual doubling of the speed. To Berlioz’s intense frustration the conductor of the first performance couldn’t manage this and the intended effect was lost. At that concert, on 23 November 1834, as in later performances, the Pilgrims’ March was encored. The procession comes from the distance into the foreground then recedes. Each sequence of the pilgrims’ hymn is answered by a harmonically distant chord for horns and harp, conveying the vastness of the scene. Two themes are heard simultaneously: the pilgrims’ hymn and the ‘Harold’ idea in long notes, eventually resolving into long arpeggios


The beginning of the Serenade was inspired by the playing of the pifferari, strolling wind players who dwell in the Abruzzi mountains. The main theme is given out on cor anglais, and the solo viola puts Harold in the picture. Berlioz called the Brigands’ Orgy finale ‘… furious, with drinking, destruction, killing and violation’. Interrupting the music to review themes from earlier movements recalls what Beethoven had done at the beginning of the finale of his Ninth Symphony. Quite soon, Harold in the person of the solo viola is put to horrified flight, and is heard no more, except, just before the end, for one brief reminiscent comment on the pilgrims’ march, heard from offstage. Paganini would have been left, by and large, holding his viola without playing it while the orchestra let loose one of music’s most shattering climaxes. But Paganini never played Harold in Italy. When he heard it, four years after the premiere, he was moved to give Berlioz 20,000 francs, enabling him to compose Roméo et Juliette, which became the third of his unconventional symphonies. David Garrett © 2014

PYOTR ILYICH TCHAIKOVSKY

(1840–1893)

Manfred Symphony I. Lento lugubre II. Vivace con spirito III. Pastorale. Andante con moto IV. Allegro con fuoco Byron’s verse drama Manfred, which appeared in 1816, is a quintessential work of Romanticism. The lone and tortured hero lives in a Gothic castle, summoning spirits and yearning for death, bemoaning his sins but refusing repentance, ascending the Alpine peaks and travelling to the underworld. Byron’s sublime landscapes and supernatural events spoke to numerous artists such as painters John Martin and Ford Madox Brown, and composers such as Robert Schumann and Mili Balakirev. In Balakirev’s case, however, enthusiasm for Manfred led not to a work of his own, but, in 1882, to a rather imperious suggestion to Tchaikovsky that he compose such a work; to make things easier, Balakirev enclosed a detailed program, laying out the movements and the events they represent, along with what themes should be in what keys, and the general character and sound of the work. Tchaikovsky freely ignored much of that advice. Consumed by grief and guilt, and unable to experience any other emotion, Manfred, like Faust, summons occult spirits; they are unable to grant him the gift of oblivion, but curse him: ‘Nor to slumber, nor to die,/ Shall be in thy destiny’. Manfred attempts to throw himself over a precipice but is saved by a chamois hunter, who looks after him in his simple hut and attempts to talk Manfred out of his self-destructive ways. Later, Manfred speaks to the Witch of the Alps, who appears refracted in the mist of a cataract, and hints to her that his spiritual state is the result of being indirectly responsible for the death of

HAROLD IN ITALY / POETRY IN MUSIC | 18–19 August

for the solo viola. Later Berlioz suggests convent bells with two harps, flutes, oboes and horns. The background of this movement is the Allegretto of Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony; still in the future is the religious procession in Mendelssohn’s ‘Italian’ symphony.

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HAROLD IN ITALY / POETRY IN MUSIC | 18–19 August 26

his sister, Astarte, the only being he has ever loved. After an encounter with the Three Destinies and an appearance by the goddess Nemesis, he penetrates the hellish underworld. Manfred refuses to do obeisance to its king Arimanes, but is granted a vision of Astarte, who merely tells him that ‘to-morrow ends thine earthly ills’. As Manfred’s death approaches, demons appear, summoning him to suffer for his sins, and an Abbot tries to persuade him to repent; Manfred defies the demons and the Abbot, and expires with the words ‘Old man! ‘tis not so difficult to die.’ We are left not knowing if Manfred’s soul has been saved or damned. Tchaikovsky followed the broad outline of Balakirev’s program. The first movement begins with Manfred’s restless idée fixe, or theme, and depicts him wandering in the Alps, beset by memories of Astarte and wishing for oblivion. Balakirev’s program, following Byron’s chronology, next suggested a movement dedicated to the simple life of the peasant hunters; however, Tchaikovsky saw the need for a fast movement to offset the opening Lento, so the second is a scherzo representing the Witch of the Alps glittering in her waterfall. The Pastorale evokes the simple life of the chamois hunters and other rustic figures; this too provides huge contrast with the vision of the kingdom of Arimanes, the brief vision of Astarte and the final death of Manfred. Responding to a second version of Balakirev’s program, Tchaikovsky introduces the organ in a bright B major for what Balakirev called Manfred’s Requiem. His defiance of God, nature, demons and humans gives Manfred his heroic stature. Tchaikovsky was deeply ambivalent about Manfred. On one hand, in 1886, he told his patron, Madame von Meck, that ‘I think that this is my best symphonic work’; two years later he

wrote to an acquaintance, ‘it is an abominable piece, and that I loathe it deeply, with the exception of the first movement’. In fact it is a fine example of his dramatic sense, large-scale structure and dazzlingly varied orchestration. Gordon Kerry © 2013


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Sibelius and Ravel Thursday 25 August / 7.30pm Saturday 27 August / 2pm Arts Centre Melbourne, Hamer Hall Melbourne Symphony Orchestra Jaime Martín conductor Yeol Eum Son piano THOMAS ADÈS The Exterminating Angel Symphony (AUSTRALIAN PREMIERE)

RAVEL Piano Concerto in G SIBELIUS Symphony No.5

Pre-concert talk: 25 August at 6:45pm and 27 August at 1:15pm at Hamer Hall. Learn more about the performance at a pre-concert presentation with Stephanie KabanyanaKanyandekwe. Our musical Acknowledgment of Country, Long Time Living Here by Deborah Cheetham AO, will be performed at this concert. Running time: Approximately 110 minutes, inc. 20-min interval.


Yeol Eum Son

The MSO’s Chief Conductor is supported by Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO.

Multi-award-winning South Korean pianist Yeol Eum Son is famed for her power, poetry and remarkably perceptive playing. Her graceful and timeless interpretations, crystalline touch and versatile, thrilling performances have caught the attention of audiences worldwide.

conductor

Jaime Martín commenced his tenure as MSO Chief Conductor in 2022, investing the Orchestra with prodigious musical creativity and momentum. In September 2019 Jaime Martín became Chief Conductor of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. He has been Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of Gävle Symphony Orchestra since 2013. He was recently announced as the Principal Guest Conductor of the Orquesta y Coro Nacionales de España (Spanish National Orchestra) for the 22/23 season. Having spent many years as a highly regarded flautist, Jaime turned to conducting fulltime in 2013. In recent years Martín has conducted an impressive list of orchestras and has recorded various discs, both as a conductor and as a flautist. Martín is the Artistic Advisor and previous Artistic Director of the Santander Festival. He was also a founding member of the Orquestra de Cadaqués, where he was Chief Conductor from 2012 to 2019. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music, London, where he was a flute professor.

piano

SIBELIUS AND RAVEL | 25–27 August

Jaime Martín

Yeol Eum performs all over the world as a recitalist and soloist with orchestras. An avid chamber musician, Yeol Eum was appointed Artistic Director of Music in PyeongChang Festival in 2018, responsible for programming summer and winter editions at the Olympic site. Praised for her widely eclectic and rich concerti repertoire, Yeol Eum collaborates with major ensembles worldwide such as New York Philharmonic, Detroit and San Diego Symphony Orchestras, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, Gürzenich-Orchester Köln, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, Dresdner Philharmoniker, Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken, NDR Radiophilharmonie, Bergen Philharmonic, Finnish Radio, Helsinki Philharmonic, CBSO, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Aurora Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande and Sinfonieorchester Basel among many others.

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SIBELIUS AND RAVEL | 25–27 August

Program Notes

III. Berceuse

brought together to create something wholly original. ‘What interests me about the waltz is the seductiveness of this music’ remarked Adès in an interview before the opera’s premiere. ‘I often feel that the waltzes by Johann Strauss are saying “why don’t you stay a little longer? Don’t worry about what’s going on outside”. So in the context of this opera the waltz becomes very dangerous, potentially fatal.’

IV. Waltzes

© Faber Music

THOMAS ADÈS

(born 1971)

The Exterminating Angel Symphony (AUSTRALIAN PREMIERE)

I. Entrances II. March

Composed in 2020, this Symphony is an orchestral rendering of music from Adès’ third opera The Exterminating Angel. Based on Luis Buñuel’s classic surrealist movie from 1962, in which a collection of society characters find themselves inexplicably trapped together at a post-opera party, it premiered at the 2016 Salzburg Festival, and has since travelled to the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, New York’s Metropolitan Opera, and the Royal Danish Opera, Copenhagen. In the Symphony’s opening movement, Entrances, the guests arrive for dinner; in an early sign that they are leaving “reality” behind, they arrive twice. Then comes the ferocious and obsessive March that bridges the opera’s first two acts, the music for their first night under the spell of the Exterminating Angel. The third movement is a Berceuse which draws on some of the work’s most exquisite and memorable music: one of the yearning, melancholy duets between the doomed lovers Beatriz and Eduardo: Fold your body into mine / Hide yourself within its hand.

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Adès describes composing Waltzes – the Symphony’s final and most extensive movement – as like ‘joining together the bits of a broken porcelain object’. Unlike the other movements, which draw on fairly complete passages from the opera, here the waltz fragments that surface throughout the score are


Piano Concerto in G I. Allegramente II. Adagio assai III. Presto Yeol Eum Son piano Given Ravel was a concert pianist, it is surprising, not that he wrote two great piano concertos (the concerto for the left hand and tonight’s work), but that he wrote them at the end of his career. During the 1920s, Ravel became a frequenter of the late-night jazz clubs featuring black American musicians which had sprang up all over Paris. The influence of jazz is most clearly observable in the G major Piano Concerto. The idea for the opening theme came to Ravel in 1927 as he was travelling by train from Oxford to London. He then lifted themes from an aborted Basque Rhapsody he had intended for piano and orchestra in 1919, and reworked them into a more distinctively modern idiom. Perhaps the biggest impetus of all came in America in 1928 when Ravel met George Gershwin and heard his Rhapsody in Blue, whose influence is obvious in the middle of the first movement. Ravel originally intended to perform the solo part of the concerto himself, but in the end his ailing health prevented him from doing so. Instead, the concerto was premiered by Marguerite Long at the Salle Pleyel in 1932, with Ravel himself conducting. (The left hand concerto had always been intended for Paul Wittgenstein.) For all its jazziness, Ravel thought of this as a ‘classical’ concerto: Planning the two concertos simultaneously was an interesting experience. The one in which I shall appear as the interpreter is a concerto in the true sense of the word:

I mean that it is written very much in the same spirit as those of Mozart and Saint-Saëns. The music of a concerto should, in my opinion, be lighthearted and brilliant, and not aim at profundity or dramatic effects. Indeed Ravel considered calling it a ‘Divertissement’. In any case, it became a true concerto in which fun, selfparody, and exquisite beauty all play their part; but there is a ‘brittleness’ in the concerto’s high spirits, not to mention a pervasive and ‘in-spite-ofitself’ sadness to the slow movement.

SIBELIUS AND RAVEL | 25–27 August

MAURICE RAVEL

(1875–1937)

The work begins with the crack-of-awhip and it barely stops racing during the entirety of its first movement. Scored with virtuosic dexterity and lightness, the jazzy rhythm drives on through spiky arpeggios in the piano, a piccolo solo, tremolos and pizzicati in the strings and a trumpet solo. Even the harp takes the spotlight. The Adagio – one of Ravel’s most sublime achievements – was modelled on the equivalent movement in Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet. Writing painstakingly, two bars at a time, Ravel agonised over this movement for many months, confessing later that it ‘almost killed him’. Its prevailing mood is that of a nocturne and the piano’s achingly beautiful main theme seems almost hesitant, yet somehow inexorable and assured. Amidst trills on the piano, this most astonishing of slow movements draws to a close. Ravel told Marguerite Long that he was going to end the concerto on those trills, but in fact he added a finale – and exceeds the frenetic pace of the opening movement. Martin Buzacott Symphony Australia © 1997

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SIBELIUS AND RAVEL | 25–27 August 32

JEAN SIBELIUS

(1865–1957)

Symphony No.5 in E flat I. Tempo molto moderato II. Andante mosso, quasi allegretto III. Allegro molto The pitiless despair of Sibelius’ Fourth Symphony (1911) puzzled many of its first listeners. The work seemed an unlikely sequel to the gentle radiance of the Third (1907), yet its gaze into the abyss gave way, in the Fifth, to one of Sibelius’ most shining, life-affirming creations. Early in 1914 he heard Schoenberg’s Chamber Symphony for the first time. ‘This is a legitimate and valid way of looking at things, I suppose,’ he wrote in his diary. ‘But it is certainly painful to listen to.’ Yet we know that Schoenberg’s abandonment of tonality continued to fascinate Sibelius, for it suggested a ‘next step’ for his own work after the Fourth Symphony. (He expressed his admiration for Schoenberg publicly at this time.) But the Fifth Symphony tells us plainly that Sibelius could not adopt another’s solutions to the musical issues he confronted. While the Fifth is light to the Fourth’s darkness, a progression from doubt to belief (Sibelius’ admiration for Bruckner should not be forgotten here), it represents no shift in Sibelius’ compositional principles; he was not a man to change his ways so swiftly. An economy of orchestral resource, the building up of musical paragraphs by the development of tiny melodic fragments, the determination to create his own solutions to the problems of harmonic language and symphonic form – these were abiding features of his music from the beginning of his composing life. In fact of all the major composers of the last century he was the most solitary, methodical and purposeful in his stylistic development, taking only fitful interest in the work of his contemporaries. In Neville Cardus’ memorable description,

Sibelius ‘sits alone in the house of music rather away from the hearth and the logs and the company; he says little, and sometimes by his taciturnity alone he makes an impression of deep thinking.’ He wrote the Fifth, one of the most popular of all his works, at a time of great personal difficulty. The Great War had broken out and, as a result, Sibelius had lost access to the revenue from his German publishers, Breitkopf and Härtel. To earn some regular income he wrote a great number of salon pieces for domestic performance, and had little time for other composing; the Fifth Symphony is his only major work of the war years. Sibelius himself conducted the symphony’s first performance, at a concert given on 8 December 1915 to mark his 50th birthday. It was a jubilant event, treated almost as a national holiday, but Sibelius was unhappy with the work and revised it twice. In 1916 he joined the first two of the original four movements together, and he made further revisions before it was published in 1919. The symphony begins quietly on horns and timpani. The theme we hear at this point is soon elaborated into a woodwind cadenza. At its conclusion the strings enter, and we seem to be moving gradually and inexorably into the landscape of the music until we come to the vista presented by a great tolling of the brass and the announcement of a jagged syncopated theme on the strings. Now we have reached the threshold beyond which the heart of the symphony lies. A mysterious, cloudy passage for the strings – over which the bassoon utters a sorrowful version of one of the main themes – leads to a burnished assertion by the trumpets of the very first theme of the symphony, shortly after which,


The second movement is a set of variations not on a theme, but on a rhythmic pattern that Sibelius contrives to behave like a theme. The whole movement is a centre of calm, and even the passionate descending string tune that marks one of the most decisive transformations of the original idea is marked Poco tranquillo. Towards the end of the movement the brass toll out a reminiscence of their earlier, more excitable selves; this leads to a series of cloudy gestures which recall music from the earlier movement. But towards the end the mood changes to one of almost childlike serenity, which is carried through to the short, abbreviated, coda. The finale throws us into its hurly-burly almost immediately, with a whirlwind passage for the strings leading to one of the most famous of all themes in Sibelius’ music, that in which, as Donald Tovey famously described it, Thor swings his hammer. It is a good example of how orchestrally conceived Sibelius’ ideas are. Played on the piano the tune would mean very little, but given out on horns with a high, syncopated woodwind counterpoint, it attains a unique nobility. After some woodwind carolling and a return to the gusty sounds of the movement’s opening, Sibelius prepares us for a return of the swinging horn theme. When this finally re-appears, it does so as a chorale that has to struggle through long pedalpoints and changes of key before bursting into its sunset glory. These final minutes of the movement contain the richest orchestration of the whole work, but almost before we can register

the fact, the symphony ends with six jubilant, adamant chords. Phillip Sametz © 1995/2004

SIBELIUS AND RAVEL | 25–27 August

with a change of time signature from 12/8 to 3/4, the mood changes to one of dancing lightness, in which the sound of the two flutes leads us on. Soon the music gathers pace and the strings take up the dance strain with increasing excitement until the brass join in for the final, sudden, invigorating climax.

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Supporters

Supporters MSO PATRON The Honourable Linda Dessau AC, Governor of Victoria

CHAIRMAN’S CIRCLE Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO The Gandel Foundation The Gross Foundation Di Jameson and Frank Mercurio Harold Mitchell Foundation Hyon Ju Newman Lady Potter AC CMRI The Cybec Foundation The Pratt Foundation Elizabeth Proust AO and Brian Lawrence The Ullmer Family Foundation

ARTIST CHAIR BENEFACTORS Chief Conductor Jaime Martín Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO Cybec Assistant Conductor Chair Carlo Antonioli The Cybec Foundation Concertmaster Chair Sophie Rowell The Ullmer Family Foundation Concertmaster Chair Dale Barltrop David Li AM and Angela Li Assistant Concertmaster Tair Khisambeev Di Jameson and Frank Mercurio Young Composer in Residence Alex Turley The Cybec Foundation

PROGRAM BENEFACTORS MSO Now & Forever Fund: International Engagement Gandel Foundation Cybec 21st Century Australian Composers Program The Cybec Foundation Digital Transformation The Ian Potter Foundation, The Margaret Lawrence Bequest – Managed by Perpetual, Perpetual Foundation – Alan (AGL) Shaw Endowment First Nations Emerging Artist Program The Ullmer Family Foundation East meets West The Li Family Trust 34

◊ Denotes Adopt a Musician supporter

MSO Live Online Crown Resorts Foundation, Packer Family Foundation MSO Education Anonymous MSO Academy Di Jameson and Frank Mercurio MSO For Schools Crown Resorts Foundation, Packer Family Foundation, The Department of Education and Training, Victoria, through the Strategic Partnerships Program and the Victorian Challenge and Enrichment Series (VCES) Melbourne Music Summit Erica Foundation Pty Ltd, The Department of Education and Training, Victoria, through the Strategic Partnerships Program MSO Regional Touring Creative Victoria, Freemasons Foundation Victoria, John T Reid Charitable Trusts, Robert Salzer Foundation, The Sir Andrew & Lady Fairley Foundation The Pizzicato Effect Supported by Hume City Council’s Community Grants program, The Marian and E.H. Flack Trust, Scobie and Claire Mackinnon Trust, Australian Decorative And Fine Arts Society, Anonymous Sidney Myer Free Concerts Supported by the Sidney Myer MSO Trust Fund and the University of Melbourne

PLATINUM PATRONS $100,000+ Mr Marc Besen AC and the late Mrs Eva Besen AO The Gandel Foundation The Gross Foundation◊ Di Jameson and Frank Mercurio◊ David Li AM and Angela Li◊ The Pratt Foundation The Ullmer Family Foundation Anonymous (1)◊

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Sylvia Miller

Margaret Abbey PSM

Anthomy and Anna Morton Timothy O’Connell Brendan O’Donnell Laurence O’Keefe and Christopher James Roger Parker Ian Penboss Adriana and Sienna Pesavento Eli Raskin Jan and Keith Richards James Ring Dr Peter Rogers and Cathy Rogers OAM Dr Ronald and Elizabeth Rosanove Marie Rowland Dr Paul Schneider and Dr Margarita Silva-Schneider Elisabeth and Doug Scott Glenn Sedgwick Sparky Foundation Martin and Susan Shirley P Shore Hon Jim Short and Jan Rothwell Short John E Smith Dr Norman and Dr Sue Sonenberg Barry Spanger Dr Vaughan Speck Dr Peter Strickland Dr Joel Symons and Liora Symons Gavin Taylor Russell Taylor and Tara Obeyesekere Frank Tisher OAM and Dr Miriam Tisher Andrew and Penny Torok

Supporters

Peter Lawrence

Jane Allan and Mark Redmond Mario M Anders Jenny Anderson Liz and Charles Baré Miriam Bass Heather and David Baxter Peter Berry and Amanda Quirk Dr William Birch AM Allen and Kathryn Bloom Melissa Bochner Graham and Mary Ann Bone Stephen Braida Linda Brennan R Brook Edwin Brumby Anita and Norman Bye Pamela M Carder Ian and Wilma Chapman Dr Catherine Cherry Cititec Systems Charmaine Collins Geoffrey Constable Marjorie Cornelius Dr Sheryl Coughlin and Paul Coughlin Gregory Crew Dr Daryl Daley and Nola Daley Michael Davies Nada Dickinson Bruce Dudon David and Dr Elizabeth Ebert Cynthia Edgell

37


Supporters

Melissa and Aran Fitzgerald

Joy Manners

Brian Florence

Janice Mayfield

Simon Gaites

Wayne McDonald and Kay Schroer

Anthony Garvey and Estelle O’Callaghan

Dr Anne McDougall

Sandra Gillett and Jeremy Wilkins

Jennifer McKean

David and Geraldine Glenny

Dr Alan Meads and Sandra Boon

Hugo and Diane Goetze

Marie Misiurak

Pauline Goodison

Ann Moore

Louise Gourlay OAM

Kevin Morrish

Cindy Goy

Joan Mullumby

Christine Grenda

Adrian and Louise Nelson

Jason Grollo

Tania Nesbit

Dawn Hales

Rosemary O’Collins

Geoff Hayes

Jeremy O’Connor and Yoko Murakoshi

Cathy Henry

Conrad O’Donohue and Rosemary Kiss

Jim Hickey

Phil Parker

William Holder

Howard and Dorothy Parkinson

Clive and Joyce Hollands

Sarah Patterson

Roderick Home

Pauline and David Lawton

R A Hook

Adriana and Sienna Pesavento

Di and Courtney Horscroft

Wilma Plozza-Green

Peter Huntsman

Jane Powick

Geoff and Denise Illing

Kerryn Pratchett

Rob Jackson

Professor Charles Qin OAM and Kate Ritchie

Sandy Jenkins

Akshay Rao

Wendy Johnson

Professor John Rickard

Sue Johnston

Viorica Samson

Huw Jones

Carolyn Sanders

Fiona Keenan

Dr Nora Scheinkestel

Coralie Kennedy

Suzette Sherazee

Phillip Kidd

Dr Frank and Valerie Silberberg

Belinda and Alexandra King

Matt Sinclair

David Kneipp

Olga Skibina and Anastassia Korolev

Jane Kunstler

Brian Snape

Elizabeth-Anne Lane

Colin and Mary Squires

Paschalina Leach

Ruth Stringer

Jane Leitinger

Allan and Margaret Tempest

Dr Jenny Lewis

Reverend Angela Thomas

Dr Susan Linton

Amanda Watson

* The MSO has introduced a new tier to its annual Patron Program in recognition of the donors who supported the Orchestra during 2020, many for the first time. Moving forward, donors who make an annual gift of $500–$999 to the MSO will now be publicly recognised as an Overture Patron. For more information, please contact Donor Liaison, Keith Clancy on (03) 9929 9609 or clancyk@mso.com.au 38


Andrew Serpell

Angela Westacott

Jennifer Shepherd

Barry and Julie Wilkins

Suzette Sherazee

Fiona Woodard

Dr Gabriela and Dr George Stephenson

Dr Kelly and Dr Heathcote Wright

Pamela Swansson

Dr Susan Yell

Lillian Tarry

Daniel Yosua

Tam Vu and Dr Cherilyn Tillman

Anonymous (18)

Mr and Mrs R P Trebilcock

CONDUCTOR’S CIRCLE Jenny Anderson David Angelovich G C Bawden and L de Kievit Lesley Bawden Joyce Bown Mrs Jenny Bruckner and the late Mr John Bruckner Ken Bullen Peter A Caldwell Luci and Ron Chambers Beryl Dean Sandra Dent Alan Egan JP Gunta Eglite Marguerite Garnon-Williams Drs L C Gruen and R W Wade Louis J Hamon AOM Carol Hay Graham Hogarth Rod Home Tony Howe Lindsay and Michael Jacombs Laurence O’Keefe and Christopher James John Jones Grace Kass and the late George Kass Sylvia Lavelle Pauline and David Lawton Cameron Mowat Ruth Muir David Orr Matthew O’Sullivan Rosia Pasteur Penny Rawlins Joan P Robinson Anne Roussac-Hoyne and Neil Roussac Michael Ryan and Wendy Mead

Supporters

Michael Webber and Ruth Fincher

Peter and Elisabeth Turner Michael Ulmer AO The Hon. Rosemary Varty Terry Wills Cooke OAM and the late Marian Wills Cooke Mark Young Anonymous (19) The MSO gratefully acknowledges the support of the following Estates: Norma Ruth Atwell Angela Beagley Christine Mary Bridgart The Cuming Bequest Margaret Davies Neilma Gantner The Hon Dr Alan Goldberg AO QC Enid Florence Hookey Gwen Hunt Family and Friends of James Jacoby Audrey Jenkins Joan Jones Pauline Marie Johnston C P Kemp Peter Forbes MacLaren Joan Winsome Maslen Lorraine Maxine Meldrum Prof Andrew McCredie Jean Moore Maxwell Schultz Miss Sheila Scotter AM MBE Marion A I H M Spence Molly Stephens Halinka Tarczynska-Fiddian Jennifer May Teague Albert Henry Ullin Jean Tweedie Herta and Fred B Vogel Dorothy Wood 39


Supporters

COMMISSIONING CIRCLE

MSO BOARD

Mary Armour

Chairman

The Hon Michael Watt QC and Cecilie Hall

David Li AM

Tim and Lyn Edward

Di Jameson

FIRST NATIONS CIRCLE

Co-Deputy Chairs Helen Silver AO Managing Director

John and Lorraine Bates

Sophie Galaise

Colin Golvan AM QC and Dr Deborah Golvan

Board Directors Shane Buggle

Sascha O. Becker

Andrew Dudgeon AM

Elizabeth Proust AO and Brian Lawrence

Danny Gorog

The Kate and Stephen Shelmerdine Family Foundation

Lorraine Hook

Michael Ullmer AO and Jenny Ullmer

David Krasnostein AM

Jason Yeap OAM – Mering Management Corporation

Gary McPherson

HONORARY APPOINTMENTS Life Members

Margaret Jackson AC

Hyon-Ju Newman Glenn Sedgwick Company Secretary Oliver Carton

Mr Marc Besen AC John Gandel AC and Pauline Gandel AC Sir Elton John CBE Harold Mitchell AC Lady Potter AC CMRI Jeanne Pratt AC Artistic Ambassadors Tan Dun Lu Siqing MSO Ambassador Geoffrey Rush AC The MSO honours the memory of Life Members Mrs Eva Besen AO John Brockman OAM The Honourable Alan Goldberg AO QC Roger Riordan AM Ila Vanrenen

The MSO relies on your ongoing philanthropic support to sustain our artists, and support access, education, community engagement and more. We invite our supporters to get close to the MSO through a range of special events. The MSO welcomes your support at any level. Donations of $2 and over are tax deductible, and supporters are recognised as follows: $500+ (Overture) $1,000+ (Player) $2,500+ (Associate) $5,000+ (Principal) $10,000+ (Maestro) $20,000+ (Impresario) $50,000+ (Virtuoso)

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$100,000+ (Platinum)


Get closer to the Music Become an MSO Patron

Help us deliver an annual Season of musical magic, engage world-renowned artists, and nurture the future of Australian orchestral music by becoming an MSO Patron. Through an annual gift of $500 or more, you can join a group of like-minded musiclovers and enhance your MSO experience. Be the first to hear news from the MSO and enjoy exclusive MSO Patron activities, including behind-the-scenes access, special Patron pre-sales, and events with MSO musicians and guest artists. To find out more, please call MSO Philanthropy on (03) 8646 1551, or join online by clicking the button below. Thank you for your support.

BECOME AN MSO PATRON


Thank you to our Partners Principal Partner

Education Partner

Premier Partners

Orchestral Training Partner

Venue Partner

Major Partners

Government Partners

Supporting Partners

Quest Southbank

Ernst & Young

Bows for Strings


Media and Broadcast Partners

Trusts and Foundations

Freemasons Foundation Victoria

Erica Foundation Pty Ltd, The Sir Andrew and Lady Fairley Foundation, John T Reid Charitable Trusts, Scobie & Claire Mackinnon Trust, Perpetual Foundation – Alan (AGL) Shaw Endowment, Sidney Myer MSO Trust Fund, The Ullmer Family Foundation

East meets West Program Supporters Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Melbourne

Prestigious Partner

Consortium Partners

Ministry of Culture and Tourism China

Concert Partners

Supporting Partners

Supporters Ken Ong OAM


BEST SEAT in the house

As Principal Partner of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, we know the importance of delighting an audience. That’s why when you’re in Emirates First, you’ll enjoy the ultimate flying experience with fine dining at any time in your own private suite.

*Emirates First Class Private Suite pictured. For more information visit emirates.com/au, call 1300 303 777, or contact your local travel agent.