Magazine of the Vancouver Symphony
May 1 to June 15, 2015 Volume 20, Issue 5
Yo-Yo Ma Friday, May 1
Karen Gomyo plays Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto
Randy Bachman with the VSO VSO Season Finale Mahler’s Fifth Symphony
Bernstein’s sensational Candide
Vancouver Symphony Orchestra BRAMWELL TOVEY MUSIC DIRECTOR KAZUYOSHI AKIYAMA CONDUCTOR LAUREATE GORDON GERRARD ASSOCIATE CONDUCTOR* Marsha & George Taylor Chair
Dale Barltrop, Concertmaster Joan Blackman, § Associate Concertmaster Nicholas Wright, Assistant Concertmaster Jennie Press, Second Assistant Concertmaster Mary Sokol Brown Mrs. Cheng Koon Lee Chair
Jenny Essers Akira Nagai, Associate Concertmaster Emeritus Xue Feng Wei Rebecca Whitling Yi Zhou
Jason Ho, Principal Karen Gerbrecht, Associate Principal
Jim and Edith le Nobel Chair
Jeanette Bernal-Singh, Assistant Principal Adrian Shu-On Chui Daniel Norton Ann Okagaito Ashley Plaut
Neil Miskey, Principal Andrew Brown, Acting Principal Stephen Wilkes, Assistant Principal Lawrence Blackman
Estelle & Michael Jacobson Chair
Matthew Davies Emilie Grimes
Dr. Malcolm Hayes and Lester Soo Chair
Professors Mr. & Mrs. Ngou Kang Chair
Ariel Barnes, Principal Nezhat and Hassan Khosrowshahi Chair
Janet Steinberg, Associate Principal Zoltan Rozsnyai, Assistant Principal Olivia Blander
Gerhard and Ariane Bruendl Chair
Mary & Gordon Christopher Chair
Charles Inkman Cristian Markos
Dylan Palmer, Principal David Brown J. Warren Long Frederick Schipizky
Christie Reside, Principal Ron & Ardelle Cliff Chair
Nadia Kyne, Assistant Principal Rosanne Wieringa
Michael & Estelle Jacobson Chair
Hermann & Erika Stölting Chair
Roger Cole, Principal
Wayne & Leslie Ann Ingram Chair
Beth Orson, Assistant Principal Karin Walsh Paul Moritz Chair
The Stage Crew of the Orpheum Theatre are members of Local 118 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees.
JOCELYN MORLOCK COMPOSER-IN-RESIDENCE* MARCUS GODDARD COMPOSER-IN-ASSOCIATION
English Horn Beth Orson
Matthew Crozier, Principal
Chair in Memory of John S. Hodge Gregory A. Cox, Acting Principal
Jeanette Jonquil, Principal Cris Inguanti, § Assistant Principal David Lemelin
E-flat Clarinet David Lemelin
Bass Clarinet Cris Inguanti §
Julia Lockhart, Principal Sophie Dansereau, Assistant Principal Gwen Seaton
Oliver de Clercq, Principal Benjamin Kinsman
Bass Trombone Douglas Sparkes
Arthur H. Willms Family Chair
Peder MacLellan, Principal
Aaron McDonald, Principal
Vern Griffiths, Principal Martha Lou Henley Chair
Elizabeth Volpé Bligh, Principal
Linda Lee Thomas, Principal Carter (Family) Deux Mille Foundation Chair
Orchestra Personnel Manager DeAnne Eisch
Werner & Helga Höing Chair
David Haskins, Associate Principal Andrew Mee
Winslow & Betsy Bennett Chair
Richard Mingus, Assistant Principal
Larry Knopp, Principal Marcus Goddard, Associate Principal Vincent Vohradsky
W. Neil Harcourt in memory of Frank N. Harcourt Chair
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra is a proud member of
Minella F. Lacson Pierre Boyard
Master Electrician Leonard Lummis
Piano Technician Thomas Clarke
*Supported by The Canada Council for the Arts § Leave of Absence
allegro Magazine of the Vancouver Symphony
In this Issue
The Orchestra . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Allegro Staff . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Government Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Message from the Chairman . . . . . . . . . . . 7 VSO Musician Profile . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Patronsâ€™ Circle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 VSO School of Music . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Vancouver Symphony Foundation . . . . . . 43 VSO Stradivarius Legacy Circle . . . . . . . . 44 Advertise in Allegro . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
May 1 to June 15, 2015 Volume 20, Issue 5
VSO Mobile Website . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 VSO Retirements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57 VSO Symphony Ball . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 VSO Gift Shop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 VSO Lottery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 VSO Group Sales . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68 Corporate Partners . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76 At the Concert / VSO Staff . . . . . . . . . . . . 78 Board of Directors / Volunteer Council . . 79 VSO 2015 Summer Season . . . . . . . . . . . 80
We welcome your comments on this magazine. Please forward them to: Vancouver Symphony, 500 â€“ 833 Seymour Street, Vancouver, BC V6B 0G4 Allegro contact and advertising enquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org / customer service: 604.876.3434 / VSO office: 604.684.9100 / website: vancouversymphony.ca / Allegro staff: published by The Vancouver Symphony Society / editor/publisher: Anna Gove / contributors: Don Anderson / orchestra photo credit: Johnathon Vaughn / art direction, design & production: bay6 creative inc. Printed in Canada by Web Impressions Ltd. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written consent is prohibited. Contents copyrighted by the Vancouver Symphony, with the exception of material written by contributors. Allegro Magazine has been endowed by a generous gift from Adera Development Corporation.
19 Angela Hewitt
VSO Musician Profiles:
Concerts MAY 1 / Specials / Wesbild Presents Yo-Yo Ma with the VSO / . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Bramwell Tovey conductor, Yo-Yo Ma cello MAY 2, 4 / Goldcorp Masterworks Gold / Kazuyoshi Akiyama conductor, Ray Chen violin . . . . . . . . 15 MAY 9, 10, 11 / Air Canada Masterworks Diamond / Rogers Group Financial . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Symphony Sundays / Kazuyoshi Akiyama conductor, Angela Hewitt piano MAY 15, 16 / London Drugs VSO Pops / Ella and Louis! / Jeff Tyzik conductor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Byron Stripling vocalist, Marva Hicks vocalist, Bob Breithaupt drums MAY 17 / Kids’ Koncerts / Classical Kids: Beethoven Lives Upstairs / . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Gordon Gerrard conductor, Classical Kids MAY 20 / Specials / PwC Presents Randy Bachman with the VSO / Gordon Gerrard conductor . . . 37 MAY 21, 24 / VSO Chamber Players / Dale Barltrop violin, Ashley Plaut violin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Emilie Grimes viola, Matthew Davies viola, Olivia Blander cello Chiharu Iinuma piano, Dylan Palmer bass MAY 23, 24 / Mardon Group Insurance Musically Speaking / Surrey Nights / . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 Alexander Shelley conductor, Janina Fialkowska piano MAY 29, 30, JUNE 1 / Classical Traditions / North Shore Classics / . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 Jun Märkl conductor, Karen Gomyo violin MAY 31 / Vancouver Sun Symphony at the Annex / The Emperor’s Daughter / . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 Gordon Gerrard conductor, Lan Tung erhu/vocalist JUNE 3 / Specials / Last Night Of The Proms / Bramwell Tovey conductor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 Vancouver Bach Choir JUNE 6, 8 / Goldcorp Masterworks Gold / Bramwell Tovey conductor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Tracy Dahl soprano, Judith Forst mezzo-soprano, Alek Shrader tenor Richard Suart baritone, UBC Opera Ensemble JUNE 11 / Tea & Trumpets / French Classics / Bramwell Tovey conductor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Christopher Gaze series host & narrator, EnChor JUNE 13, 15 / Air Canada Masterworks Diamond / Bramwell Tovey conductor, Lucy Wang violin . . 71 5allegro allegro5
The Vancouver Symphony Society is grateful to the Government of Canada and the Canada Council for the Arts, Province of British Columbia and the BC Arts Council, and the City of Vancouver for their ongoing support. The combined investment in the VSO by the three levels of government annually funds over 28% of the cost of the orchestra’s extensive programs and activities. This vital investment enables the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra to present over 150 life-enriching concerts in 16 diverse venues throughout the Lower Mainland and Whistler, attract some of the world’s best musicians to live and work in our community, produce Grammy® and Juno® award-winning recordings, tour domestically and internationally, and, through our renowned educational programs, touch the lives of over 50,000 children annually.
Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages
Christy Clark, Premier of British Columbia
Gregor Robertson, Mayor of Vancouver
Message from the VSO Chairman FRED G. WITHERS
Dear Friends, In the concluding weeks of the 2014/2015 Season we will be treated to many wonderful performances, and welcome several renowned artists to VSO concerts performed in the Orpheum Theatre, Orpheum Annex, Chan Centre for the Performing Arts at UBC, Centennial Theatre in North Vancouver and Pyatt Hall at the VSO School of Music. Our 96th Season continues to be an outstanding artistic success for the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, thanks to the support of our loyal subscribers, single-ticket buyers, donors, sponsors and government funders. On behalf of Maestro Tovey, the musicians, administrative staff, Board of Directors and volunteers, we express our sincere appreciation to you. We also thank those who have made a commitment to the VSO this year by organizing, donating to or attending the 25th annual Symphony Ball. The Ball took place on February 12th and was a triumph, raising over $925,000 in support of the orchestra’s activities. We invite you to read pages 58 & 59 of this issue of Allegro and to join us in thanking our extraordinary Symphony Ball Committee, donors and sponsors.
concerts in venues to a wide and diverse audience, and are proud of our extensive educational programs that touch the lives of over 50,000 children. The upcoming 2015/2016 promises to be another wonderful season of music by the VSO. If you have not yet subscribed, we invite you to do so. Subscribers receive significant discounts and numerous other benefits throughout the year. Copies of the new season brochure are available in the lobby. Once you have selected your concerts, or if you have any questions, feel free to call our customer service representatives at 604.876.3434 to select your seats, or visit us online at www.vancouversymphony.ca. We look forward to seeing you often through the finale of the 2014/2015 Season, and at our concerts this summer in Deer Lake Park, Whistler, and Bard on the Beach! Thank you once again for your support – we are thrilled to have you at today’s concert.
Fred G. Withers Chair, Board of Directors
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra is a cultural institution of which we can all be proud. For 96 years it has been the cornerstone of the performing arts scene in our city and region. We are pleased to be a part of the very rich cultural fabric that makes up our community, and to annually offer over 150 life-enriching allegro 7
Concert Program S P EC IA L S OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Friday, May 1 Wesbild Presents
Yo-Yo Ma with the VSO Bramwell Tovey conductor Yo-Yo Ma cello DVORˇÁK
Slavonic Dance in E minor, Op. 72, No. 2
Symphony No. 8 in G Major, Op. 88
I. Allegro con brio II. Adagio III. Allegretto grazioso IV. Allegro ma non troppo
Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104 I. Allegro II. Adagio, ma non troppo III. Finale: Allegro moderato
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Bramwell Tovey, O.C. conductor
Grammy® and Juno® award-winning conductor/composer Bramwell Tovey was appointed Music Director of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in 2000. Under his leadership the VSO has toured to China, Korea, and across Canada and the United States. Mr. Tovey is also the Artistic Adviser of the VSO School of Music, a state-ofthe-art facility which opened in downtown Vancouver in 2011 next to the Orpheum, the VSO’s historic home. His tenure at the VSO has included complete symphony cycles of Beethoven, Mahler, and Brahms; as well as the establishment of an annual festival dedicated to contemporary music. In 2018, the VSO’s centenary year, he will become the orchestra’s Music Director Emeritus. In the 14/15 season Mr. Tovey will make guest appearances with leading US orchestras including the Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, and Kansas City Symphony. In Europe he will perform with the BBC Philharmonic and the Helsingborgs Symfoniorkester, and will travel to Australia for engagements with the symphonies of Melbourne and Sydney. During the 13/14 season Mr. Tovey’s guest appearances included the BBC and Royal Philharmonics; the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics; and the Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland, and Toronto Symphonies. In 2003 Mr. Tovey won the Juno® Award for Best Classical Composition for his choral and brass work Requiem for a Charred Skull. Commissions have included works for the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics, the Toronto Symphony, and Calgary Opera who premiered his first full length opera The Inventor in 2011. Earlier in 2014 his trumpet concerto, Songs of the Paradise Saloon, was performed by the LA Philharmonic with Alison Balsom as soloist, who also performed the work with the Philadelphia Orchestra in December 2014. A talented pianist as well as conductor and composer, he has appeared as soloist with many major orchestras including the New York, Sydney, Melbourne, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, St Louis, Toronto, and Royal Scottish orchestras. In the summer of 2014 he played and conducted Gershwin’s
Rhapsody in Blue at the Hollywood Bowl with the LA Phil, and in Saratoga with the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has performed his own Pictures in the Smoke with the Melbourne and Helsingborg Symphonies and the Royal Philharmonic. Mr. Tovey is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London, the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, and holds honorary degrees from the universities of British Columbia and Manitoba. In 2013 he was appointed an honorary Officer of the Order of Canada for services to music.
Yo-Yo Ma cello The many-faceted career of cellist Yo-Yo Ma is testament to his continual search for new ways to communicate with audiences and to his personal desire for artistic growth and renewal. Mr. Ma maintains a balance between his engagements as soloist with orchestras worldwide and his recital and chamber music activities. His discography includes over 90 albums, including more than 17 Grammy® award winners.
Mr. Ma serves as the Artistic Director of the Silk Road Project and as the Judson and Joyce Green Creative Consultant to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Institute for Learning, Access and Training. Mr. Ma has received numerous awards including the Avery Fisher Prize (1978), the National Medal of Arts (2001), the Sonning Prize (2006), the World Economic Forum’s Crystal Award (2008), the Presidential Medal of Freedom (2010), the Polar Music Prize (2012), and the Vilcek Prize in Contemporary Music (2013). In 2011, Mr. Ma was recognized as a Kennedy Center Honoree. Mr. Ma serves as a UN Messenger of Peace and as a member of the President’s Committee on the Arts & the Humanities.
Antonín Dvorˇák b. Nelahozeves, Bohemia / September 8, 1841 d. Prague, Bohemia / May 1, 1904
Slavonic Dance in E minor, Op. 72, No. 2 Dvorˇ ák overcame a lengthy, unpromising apprenticeship and became an internationally respected and beloved composer. He lived in a rustic backwater for decades, barely making ends meet by performing everyday musical tasks such as working as an organist, choir master, and viola player in a folk band. In 1874, at 33, he applied for a grant that the Austrian government made available to young, impoverished composers. The works he submitted deeply impressed the panel of judges, headed by Johannes Brahms. He went on to win the prize several times. His initial win launched a close friendship with Brahms, one result of which was a strong recommendation to Brahms’s Berlin publisher, Fritz Simrock. Simrock commissioned Dvorˇ ák to compose a set of Slavonic Dances, to be patterned on Brahms’s popular Hungarian Dances. As soon as they were published in 1878, people throughout Europe immediately fell in love with these sprightly, and to their ears, exotic pieces. Dvorˇ ák composed a second set of Slavonic Dances in 1886. In them, he cast his net more widely, including dance forms from outside his native Bohemia. No. 2 in E minor from the second set is one of the most beautiful items in the entire series, a wistful Polish mazurka that aches with romantic yearning. 12 allegro
Symphony No. 8 in G Major, Op. 88 Dvorˇ ák composed the eighth of his nine symphonies during the summer and autumn of 1889, in the idyllic surroundings of his country estate at Vysoká. Its contented, pastoral nature mirrors that location. He conducted the premiere himself, in Prague on February 2, 1890. Over the next few months, he led further performances as gestures of thanks to the Universities of Cambridge and Prague for the degrees they bestowed upon him. Those occasions bore a tinge of irony, since the Eighth is the least ‘academic’ of his symphonies. The innovative approach to form that is one of its major characteristics reflects his stated desire to make it “different from the other symphonies, with individual thoughts worked out in a new way.” It begins with a rather melancholy introduction, but this mood is quickly swept away by a genial, birdlike theme on the flute. The first movement proper then opens at a gallop. Aside from a moment of anxiety towards the end, all here is bright and happy. The rustic atmosphere (and bird calls) continue in the slow second movement. Author Alec Robertson writes that “it could stand as a miniature tone poem of Czech village life described by a highly sensitive man.” Rather than violate the tranquil mood with a boisterous scherzo, Dvorˇ ák presents a graceful, nostalgic dance piece, truly one of his loveliest creations. Trumpets herald the finale. Like the matching portion of Beethoven’s ‘Eroica’ (Symphony No. 3) it is one of the few symphonic finales in the form of a theme and variations. The warm-hearted theme is introduced by the cellos. The initial variations build to a joyous climax, followed by a tranquil passage and a final injection of energy to bring the symphony home.
“...a graceful, nostalgic dance piece, truly one of his loveliest creations.” Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104 This greatest of all cello concertos was the final piece that Dvorˇ ák composed during his three-year term as Director of the National Conservatory of Music in New York. The premiere took place in London on March 16, 1896, with the composer conducting and Leo Stern as soloist.
Three decades before, Dvorˇ ák had been in love with Josephina Cˇermáková, an aspiring sixteen-year-old actress to whom he gave piano lessons. Even though she rejected his romantic advances, he retained a powerful affection for her. As Haydn and Mozart had done before him, he married her sister, perhaps because he considered her the closest substitute he could find.
“Passing through much drama, the movement concludes with ringing fanfares...” While he was composing the second movement of this concerto, a letter from Josephina revealed that she was gravely ill. In her honour, he wove into the second movement a quotation from one of one of his songs, Leave Me Alone in My Fond Dream, which was a particular favourite of hers. She died in May 1895, one month after he resettled in Europe. A few weeks later, he revised the final pages of the concerto’s finale to include a second quotation from the song, this time as a memorial tribute.
The first theme of the opening movement – sombre, almost funereal – soon bursts forth into forceful expressiveness. Solo horn introduces the second theme. Dvorˇ ák said that it had cost him a great deal of effort, but that it moved him profoundly every time he heard it. Passing through much drama, the movement concludes with ringing fanfares. The slow second movement opens with a warm, tranquil theme introduced by the woodwinds. Dvorˇ ák gives the middle section a powerful launch, then takes up a soaring melody from Josephina’s favourite song. A quasi-cadenza for the soloist, with light accompaniment, precedes a return to the opening subject and a peaceful, contented coda. Strong contrasts characterize the finale, from the stern opening theme in march rhythm, through a wistful subject strongly inflected with the spirit of Czech folk music, to an expansive, elegiac reverie where themes from the previous movements reappear briefly. The concerto concludes on an exultant note. ■ Program Notes © 2015 Don Anderson
Concert Program G OL D C ORP M ASTE RWO R KS GO LD OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Saturday & Monday, May 2 & 4
Kazuyoshi Akiyama conductor Ray Chen violin MARCUS GODDARD Taaliniq (World Premiere) SIBELIUS Violin Concerto in D minor, Op. 47
I. Allegro moderato II. Adagio di molto III. Allegro, ma non tanto
BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 7 in A Major, Op. 92 VISIT THE SYMPHONY GIFT SHOP FOR CD SELECTIONS MASTERWORKS GOLD SERIES SPONSOR
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I. Poco sostenuto – Vivace II. Allegretto III. Presto IV. Allegro con brio
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Kazuyoshi Akiyama conductor "Whenever conductor emeritus Kazuyoshi Akiyama returns to Syracuse, performances tend to exhibit an extra spark and zing. It's almost like a group of students placed before a onetime teacher, all eager to show that they remember the lessons they have learned. Akiyama is the kind of conductor that can take us all back to school." —The Post-Standard
and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl. Followed by over a million people on Soundcloud, Ray Chen looks to expand the classical music audience by increasing its appeal to the young generation via all available social media platforms.
Marcus Goddard b. Newport, Vermont, USA / July 14, 1973
Kazuyoshi Akiyama has had long-standing relationships with the leading orchestras of Japan and now serves as Principal Conductor of the Hiroshima Symphony and also the Kyushu Symphony Orchestra. The Tokyo Symphony has honored him with the title of Conductor Laureate. He has also been Music Director of the Syracuse Symphony and the Vancouver Symphony. Maestro Akiyama is the recipient of numerous citations, including the Suntory Music Award, the Kyoto Music Award, the Mainichi Arts Award, and the Arts Encouragement Prize of the Minister of Education. In 2001, he was awarded the Emperor’s Purple Ribbon Medal from the Japanese Government for his outstanding contribution to the country’s musical culture.
Taaliniq (World Premiere)
Ray Chen violin
Program Note © 2015 Marcus Goddard
Winner of the Queen Elizabeth and Yehudi Menuhin Competitions, Ray Chen is among the most compelling young violinists today.
“The music moves forward in stormy, imitative rhythms that build in successive waves...” Taaliniq is an Inuit word for the shadows that shift and move underneath clouds as they glide across the sky. I have been inspired by the rhythms, colour and earthy power of Inuit throat singing and folk melodies for years and I have emulated some of these elements in Taaliniq. The music moves forward in stormy, imitative rhythms that build in successive waves but eventually evaporate into a gently lyrical central section. Shifting shadows swirl with steadily building intensity towards the final climax.
Jean Sibelius b. Hämeenlinna, Finland / December 8, 1865 d. Järvenpää, Finland / September 20, 1957
Ray has released three critically acclaimed albums on Sony: his debut, Virtuoso, features a recital program of works by Bach, Tartini, Franck, and Wieniawski. His second recording features the Mendelssohn and Tchaikovsky concertos performed with the Swedish Radio Orchestra and Daniel Harding. Ray’s latest album, an all-Mozart recording with Christoph Eschenbach and the Schleswig-Holstein Festival Orchestra, was released in January 2014.
Violin Concerto in D minor, Op. 47 Sibelius’s early desire had been for a career as a violin soloist, but his talent as a performer wasn’t equal to the task. On the other hand, these circumstances ensured that he had no need to consult a professional soloist when he set to a work on this concerto in September 1902. The acclaimed soloist Willy Burmester had made repeated requests for him to do so, and Sibelius now felt prepared to fulfill the commission.
In 2012, Ray was the youngest soloist to perform at the televised Nobel Prize Concert in Stockholm. Last year, he made his debuts with the Cleveland Orchestra
The premiere was given at a hastilyorganized concert in Helsinki on February 8, 1904. Burmester being unavailable on short notice, the solo part was played by
the relatively inexperienced Viktor Novácˇek, and the composer conducted. The concerto failed miserably. Sibelius revised it during the summer of 1905. Richard Strauss conducted the Berlin Philharmonic in the second debut on October 19, with the orchestra’s Concertmaster, Carl Halir, as soloist. That version achieved everything that the first had not.
“The emotional temperature rises...first through orchestral surges then increasingly so as the soloist joins in, leading to a powerful climax.” The solo violin emerges out of a murmuring bed of strings, with a long, yearning theme of ever-growing intensity. The second subject is highly expressive, almost passionate. A substantial, turbulent solo cadenza appears at the midway point. The first half of the second movement is quite restrained. The emotional temperature rises towards the middle, first through orchestral surges then increasingly so as the soloist joins in, leading to a powerful climax. Typically for Sibelius, the finale isn’t a jolly, dancing romp, but an exciting, insistently rhythmic rondo. It contains the concerto’s highest share of technical demands, and builds up a considerable head of steam en route to the dynamic conclusion.
Ludwig van Beethoven b. Bonn, Germany / baptized December 17, 1770 d. Vienna, Austria / March 26, 1827
Symphony No. 7 in A Major, Op. 92 Three years had passed since the completion of Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony, the relaxed, rustic ‘Pastoral,’ before the urge to create another piece of this kind came upon him. He composed the principal sketches for the Seventh Symphony during the autumn of 1811, while taking a rest cure in a resort town near Prague. He returned to his home in Vienna later that year, taking up the new symphony once again early in 1812. He finished it in May. It had to wait 19 months
for its premiere, which Beethoven conducted himself on December 8, 1813, in the Grand Hall of the University of Vienna. Its hearty reception helped solidify his reputation as the greatest composer since Haydn. The range of moods that it covers is striking, even by Beethoven’s standards. Three of its four movements overflow with energy and high spirits, a fact that led composer Richard Wagner, writing in 1849, to state, “this symphony is the apotheosis of the dance herself: it is dance in her highest aspect, as it were the loftiest deed of bodily motion incorporated in an ideal mould of tone.” The first movement begins with an introduction in slow tempo, one much longer than any to be found in the previouslycomposed symphonies of Haydn, Mozart or Beethoven himself. It is bold and teasing in its forecast of what is to follow: an exhilarating romp. British author Sir George Grove wrote, “It is full of swift, unexpected changes and contrasts, exciting the imagination in the highest degree, and whirling it suddenly into new and strange regions.” In terms of form, the third movement scherzo duplicated the corresponding movement in the Fourth Symphony. The restrained trio section appears repeatedly in alteration with the bustling opening panel. The finale is a headlong perpetual motion engine. It hurtles along joyously with scarcely a pause to catch its breath between first bar and last. On the other hand, the second movement communicated the most profound expression of grief and despair that had been heard in symphonic music up to that time. It became so popular that during the balance of the nineteenth century it was regularly inserted in performances of other Beethoven symphonies (No. 2 in particular), to replace slow movements that audiences found less to their liking. Moving forward upon an implacable rhythm, it bears the air of a melancholy, even funereal procession. Two brief episodes in a major key provide the only consolation. ■ Program Notes © 2015 Don Anderson
Concert Program A IR C A N A D A M A S T ERW OR K S D IAMO N D OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Saturday & Monday, May 9 & 11 ROG ERS G ROU P FIN AN C IAL S Y M P H ON Y S U N D AY S OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 2 P M
Kazuyoshi Akiyama conductor Angela Hewitt piano
Sunday, May 10
MÁRQUEZ Danzón No. 2 FALLA
Nights in the Gardens of Spain
I. In the Generalife II. Distant Dance III. In the Gardens of the Mountains of Córdoba
RAVEL Piano Concerto for the Left Hand in D Major RAVEL Le Tombeau de Couperin
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I. Prélude II. Forlane III. Menuet IV. Rigaudon
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Kazuyoshi Akiyama conductor Manuel de Falla For a biography of Maestro Akiyama please refer to page 16.
b. Cádiz, Spain / November 23, 1876 d. Alta Gracia, Argentina / November 14, 1946
Nights in the Gardens of Spain Falla’s music blends Spanish folk roots with piano the Impressionist style of composers such as One of the world’s leading pianists, Angela Debussy and Ravel, whom he came to know Hewitt regularly appears in recital and with personally during the years he spent in Paris. major orchestras all over the world. His finest orchestral composition is Noches en los jardines de España (Nights in the Gardens Highlights of Hewitt’s 2014/15 season of Spain). His original intention was to write include concerts with Washington’s a set of three nocturnes for solo piano, but National Symphony Orchestra, Yomiuri he developed it into a work for piano and Nippon Symphony, and Japan Philharmonic orchestra. It is not a traditional concerto, but orchestras, as well as Hamburger an orchestral work where the keyboard takes Symphoniker, Accademia Filarmonica di Bologna and the Swedish Chamber Orchestra. the role of principal advocate of the music’s shimmering Impressionist colours. Hewitt's award-winning recordings for The title of the opening section, In the Hyperion have garnered praise from around Generalife, refers to a garden in the Alhambra, the world. Her recording of Bach’s The Art the lavish palace in Granada where the of Fugue was released in October 2014, and Moorish caliphs spent the summer. Distant her ten-year project to record all the major Dance brings a brace of animated rhythms, keyboard works of Bach has been described suggestive of an evening festival. This spirit as “one of the record glories of our age” continues into the finale, In the Gardens of (The Sunday Times). the Mountains of Córdoba, until the music Hewitt was made an Officer of the Order of gradually winds down, fading gently and Canada in 2000 and was awarded an OBE in nostalgically into the night. the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2006. She lives in London but also has homes in Ottawa and in Italy, where she is Artistic Director of b. Ciboure, Basses Pyrénées, France / March 7, 1875 the Trasimeno Music Festival in Umbria.
Arturo Márquez b. Álamos, Sonora, Mexico / December 20, 1950
Danzón No. 2 Márquez studied in Mexico, Paris and California. He has received numerous grants and awards from the Mexican and French governments, and his music has been performed and recorded worldwide by a variety of chamber ensembles, symphony orchestras and soloists. To date he has composed four examples of the danzón, a ballroom dance that originated in Cuba. The sultry, exciting and vividly colourful No. 2, which dates from 1994, has proven so popular that it has come to be known as “Mexico’s second national anthem.” 20 allegro
d. Paris, France / December 28, 1937
Concerto for Piano Left Hand in D Major This unusual and intriguing concerto was commissioned by Paul Wittgenstein, an Austrian pianist who had lost his right arm in combat during the First World War. Wishing to continue his career, he focused on expanding the repertoire for left hand, rather than on performing the few previously existing works. This led him to commission many of the most prominent composers of the day to write concertos. Ravel’s is the only one to enter the standard repertoire. Wittgenstein performed the premiere in January 1932. Ravel stated, “In a work of this kind, it is essential to give the impression of a texture no thinner than that of a part written for both hands.” His ingenuity is such that blind-folded listeners could scarcely tell that five fingers
are at play on the keyboard instead of ten. The autograph score contains the words musae mixtatiae (‘mixed muses’), hinting at the blend of elements, classical and popular, serious and playful, that it contains. Ravel cast it in a single movement with several sub-sections: a mysterious, darkly coloured opening; commanding recitatives for piano and orchestra alike; a playful scherzo bejeweled with picturesque orchestration; and a final, poetic meditation leading to a brief, powerful coda.
Le Tombeau de Couperin Through this delectable suite, which Ravel composed from 1914 to 1917, he paid his most direct homage to his beloved Baroque era. The very name reflects Baroque practice: numerous eighteenth-century composers created such tombeaux or memorial tributes to fellow artists. In the title, Ravel chose to honour the celebrated composer and virtuoso harpsichordist François Couperin (16681733). He stated, however, that he conceived the suite as more of a salute to the entire period than to any specific composer.
(dedicated to Lt. Gabriel Deluc) is the oldest dance form in the suite. This lilting step, dating back to the Italian Renaissance, is said to have been a favourite of Venetian gondoliers. Ravel dedicated the Menuet to Jean Dreyfus, son of the friend at whose home Ravel completed the suite. In the central section of this movement, one of the most exquisitely melancholy pages in his entire output, he momentarily opened a crack in the curtain behind which he carefully concealed his emotions, and permitted a shaft of poignant inner light to shine forth. The rambunctious concluding Rigaudon derives from a rustic dance originating in the French region of Provence. A pastoral middle section, complete with drone bass, provides gentle contrast to the high-spirited outer panels. Ravel dedicated this movement to Pierre and Pascal Gaudin, brothers who were killed by the same shell during their first day in combat. ■ Program Notes © 2015 Don Anderson
While he was producing the initial sketches, the prospect of continent-wide war was looming closely. When it broke out, he put the music aside to focus on serving his country. Too old, too short and medically unfit for active duty, he found a place driving truckloads of soldiers to the front. His health, mental as well as physical, suffered grievously during the war years. In June 1917, following an attack of dysentery and the death of his beloved mother, he received a provisional medical discharge. Suffering from depression and insomnia, he accepted an invitation from a friend to rest and recuperate at her country estate. There he completed Le Tombeau de Couperin. He dedicated each movement to a friend who died in combat. When he transcribed the music for orchestra, he deleted two sections, Fugue and Toccata, and re-arranged the sequence of the remaining movements. The Prélude (dedicated to Lt. Jacques Charlot) offers a swift, sparkling introduction. The Forlane allegro 21
MUSICIAN PROFILE SERIES: ELIZABETH VOLPÉ-BLIGH VSO PRINCIPAL HARP
“ I wanted to play
what no one else was playing ”
THE JOURNEY of each individual orchestral musician is unique. Some come from musical families, others don’t. Some began playing their chosen instrument at a very early age, others began later in adolescence. Some were born to play one specific instrument, others have played many. For the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s Principal Harpist Elizabeth Volpé Bligh, it was the latter in all cases. It was a journey full of many instruments, many jobs, a lot of hard work, and most importantly, a lot of the most magical ingredient—luck.
Little Drummer Girl
grew up in Toronto and my parents were “ Idefinitely not musicians—couldn’t carry a
tune in a bucket! But they were incredibly supportive of me and were my biggest cheerleaders. In fact, my mom was actually a cheerleader when she was young and then became an Olympic-level diver and synchronized swimmer, developing some of the moves that are still in use today. My father was a physician and medical researcher, and was made an Officer of the Order of Canada for his contribution to thyroid research. (My grandmother and cousin are also recipients of the Order!)”
“I started on piano, but also played guitar and drums. I excelled at the flute, but the year before I graduated from high school, I decided that I wanted to learn to play an orchestral instrument that few people played, therefore would be in great demand. That eliminated all the instruments I already played and it’s when I thought about the harp. Barely anyone at the time was playing it, and its beautiful sound appealed to me.” “As a youngster, I often went to hear the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and watched their
Principal Harpist Judy Loman, who made it look easy. Of course, I was watching one of the best harpists in the world, and quickly found out that it was definitely not easy! Nonetheless, I dove right in.”
Major Change “I always knew that I’d be a musician, so when the time came for me to go to university, music was it. When it was time to audition for the music program at the University of Toronto, I had only been playing the harp for about a year, so I went in as a flute major. However, after a couple of weeks in the program, I asked the Dean if I could change my major instrument. It was an immediate “no”, but as I was walking out the door, he asked me what instrument I wanted to switch to. When I told him it was the all my excerpts without mistakes. In 1982, the harp, his reply was “Come back!”, and then I audition was posted again and I prepared every was allowed to major in the harp instead!” part of every piece, plus a memorized concerto. I went to that audition and played like I had Perfect Timing never played in my life—I played my heart out “After graduation, I went to the Cleveland and won the job, getting a standing ovation Institute of Music to study with the renowned from the panel.” harpist Alice Chalifoux. I took lessons with her and audited other classes at the institute. I also got a job ushering for the Cleveland Orchestra. What a thrill that was! After my return to Toronto, everything started to fall into place. It was perfect timing because, still, not many people were playing the harp. I became the Principal Harpist for the National Ballet of Canada, and had the opportunity to be a guest harpist with different orchestras. I played regularly with the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, and played occasionally as a sub with the Toronto, Edmonton and Atlantic Symphonies. I played solos with community orchestras and choirs, and recorded jingles and soundtracks as well. But I really wanted a full-time symphony job and was so excited when the audition was posted for the VSO.”
Second Time’s the Charm “During my first audition for the VSO in 1979 I was thrown a curveball when the panel asked me to play repertoire that was not on the list of requirements, and I had not prepared those. It was enough to disqualify me, though I played
33 years and counting “Since joining the VSO 33 years ago, marrying Ross Bligh and having twins James and Katrina, I started composing and arranging pieces for the harp—six of which are in the Royal Conservatory syllabus—and editing some of the orchestral harp parts that I get at the VSO. Many of these harp parts have been written by composers who never knew how to write for the instrument, and I want to make life easier for the next harpist. I add improved page turns, enharmonic re-spellings, cues, and split multi-rests to show phrases. When I hosted the World Harp Congress in 2011, I was on a panel discussing editing harp parts. I have written articles on this subject for “Harp Column” magazine, since all harpists struggle with this. But, after all these years, I still love going to work every day. This orchestra is full of superstars, and sometimes I just sit in rehearsal and listen, grateful that that this is what I get to be a part of. The musicians in this orchestra are some of the best in the world, and being a part of it just makes me feel good!
L ON D ON D RU G S V SO P O P S OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Friday & Saturday, May 15 & 16
Ella & Louis: A Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong Jeff Tyzik conductor Byron Stripling vocalist Marva Hicks vocalist Bob Breithaupt drums
VISIT THE SYMPHONY GIFT SHOP FOR CD SELECTIONS VSO POPS SERIES SPONSOR
VSO POPS RADIO SPONSOR
MAY 15 CONCERT SPONSOR
MAY 16 CONCERT SPONSOR
LAROCCA/ARR. GRIMES Tiger Rag PRIMROSE/ARR. GRIMES I’m Confessin’ That I Love You MCHUGH/ARR. GRIMES On The Sunny Side Of The Street FITZGERALD,FELDMAN/ARR. COOK A Tisket, A Tasket BERLIN/ARR. ROBINSON Just One Of Those Things GERSHWIN/ARR. GRIMES They Can’t Take That Away From Me GERSHWIN/ARR. LAVENDER Love Is Here To Stay ELLINGTON/ARR. ROBINSON It Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing) INTERMISSION ARR. TYZIK Basin Street THIELE/ARR. ALBAM What A Wonderful World GERSHWIN/ARR. SPRINGFIELD S’Wonderful GERSHWIN/ARR. GARCIA/COOK Summertime GERSHWIN/ARR. WEISTER/COOK It Ain’t Necessarily So GERSHWIN/ARR. WEISTER/COOK My Man’s Gone Now LEWIS/ARR.DORHAM That’s My Desire WALLER/ARR. TYZIK Ain’t Misbehavin BERNIE, PINKARD, KECASEY/ARR. MACKREL Sweet Georgia Brown allegro 25
Jeff Tyzik conductor Multi-Grammy速 Award winner Jeff Tyzik is one of America's most innovative and sought after pops conductors. Tyzik is recognized for his brilliant arrangements, original programming, and engaging rapport with audiences of all ages. In August 2013, Jeff Tyzik was named to The Dot and Paul Mason Principal Pops Conductor's Podium at the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. In the 13/14 season he began a new role as Principal Pops Conductor of the Seattle Symphony, the Detroit Symphony, and The Florida Orchestra. The 2013/14 concert season also saw Tyzik celebrating his 20th season as Principal Pops Conductor of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, and continues to serve as Principal Pops Conductor of the Oregon Symphony. Jeff also served as Principal Pops conductor for the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra from 2004/2014.
Byron Stripling vocalist With a contagious smile and captivating charm, trumpet virtuoso, Byron Stripling, has ignited audiences internationally. As soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra, Stripling has performed frequently under the baton
of Keith Lockhart, as well as being featured soloist on the PBS television special, Evening at Pops, with conductors John Williams and Mr. Lockhart. Currently, Stripling serves as artistic director and conductor of the highly acclaimed Columbus Jazz Orchestra. Since his Carnegie Hall debut with Skitch Henderson and the New York Pops, Stripling has become a pops orchestra favorite throughout the country, soloing with Boston Pops, National Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Cincinnati Pops, Seattle Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Toronto Symphony, and Dallas Symphony, to name a few. He has been a featured soloist at the Hollywood Bowl and performs at jazz festivals throughout the world.
Marva Hicks vocalist Marva Hicks is an accomplished and versatile performing artist and is currently starring on Broadway to rave reviews in the smash hit Motown: The Musical. Ms. Hicks had her first record deal while still a student at Howard University, where she earned her BFA, cum laude. After graduation allegro 27
she moved to New York and was cast in her first Broadway show, Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music. Later, Marva moved to Los Angeles and already an accomplished actress, she landed several recurring roles on the TV shows, L.A. Law, Star Trek: Voyager and Mad About You. During this time Marva was introduced to Stevie Wonder and subsequently travelled the world with him as a backing vocalist. Her reputation grew quickly and was soon called to work with legends such as Whitney Houston, James Ingram, and Michael Jackson on his HiSTORY Tour.
Bob Breithaupt drums Robert Breithaupt is a veteran of over 40 years in music, as a performer, educator, arts administrator, author, musical contractor, and entrepreneur. He is Professor of Music at Capital University, Past-President of the Percussive Arts Society, and on the board of the Jazz Education Network. Breithaupt has performed and recorded in diverse solo, small ensemble and orchestral settings and has appeared with a virtual “Who’s Who” of great jazz talents and scores of other noted artists. As drummer/percussionist for trumpet virtuoso Byron Stripling, Broadway star Sandy Duncan and other artists, he has performed with dozens of professional orchestras and ensembles throughout the United States and abroad, and is the drummer for the Columbus Jazz Orchestra. ■ allegro 29
The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra presents
KIDS’ KONCERTS ORPHEUM THEATRE, 2PM
Sunday, May 17
Gordon Gerrard conductor Paul Pement executive & artistic director Susan Hammond series creator Classical Kids featuring: Andrew Redlawsk as Christoph Thad Avery as Uncle
Based on the Original Work by Barbara Nichol Dramaturge & Music Timing by Paul Pement Light Design by Paul Pement Production Stage Management & Technical Coordination by Paul Pement Costume Design by Alex Meadows Follow us! Facebook @ ClassicalKidsLive / Twitter @ Classical_Kids
BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 7, Mvmt. II Symphony No. 5, Mvmt. I Piano Sonata, No. 27, Op. 90, Mvmt. II Symphony No. 1, Mvmt. IV Romance for Violin and Orch. in G Major Piano Sonata, Pathétique Symphony No. 9, Mvmt. II Piano Sonata Op. 14, No. 2 Symphony No. 4, Mvmt. II Minuet in G Major Spring Sonata
Symphony No 8, Mvmt. II Leonore Overture No. 3 Für Elise Polonaise für Militärmusik in D major Moonlight Sonata, Op. 27, No. 2 Mozart Variations Symphony No. 6, Mvmt. I Symphony No. 6 (Birds) Symphony No. 6 (Storm) Piano Concerto No. 1. Mvmt. I Piano Concerto No. 5, Mvmt II
Variations on ‘Nel Cor Più’ Bass Sting from Symphony No. 9 (Finale) Piano Capriccio, (Rage over a Lost Penny) Symphony No. 6 (Tremolo) Symphony No. 9 (Ode to Joy) Symphony No. 9 (Finale) Piano Sonata Op. 49, No. 2, Mvmt. II Symphony No. 6 (Shepherd’s Theme)
VISIT THE SYMPHONY GIFT SHOP FOR CD SELECTIONS KIDS’ KONCERTS CONCERT SPONSOR
THEPARTNER VSO’S KIDS’ KONCERTS HAVE BEEN PREMIER EDUCATION
PREMIER EDUCATION PARTNER
ENDOWED BY A GENEROUS GIFT FROM THE WILLIAM & IRENE MCEWEN FUND.
The theatrical concert version of Beethoven Lives Upstairs is an adaptation of the best-selling and award-winning Classical Kids audio recording, Beethoven Lives Upstairs, produced by Susan Hammond and originally directed as a staged concert by Peter Moss with additional direction by Dennis Garnhum. Classical Kids速 is a trademark of Classical Productions for Children Ltd., used under exclusive license to Pement Enterprises, Inc., and produced by Classical Kids Music Education, NFP. Actors and Production Stage Manager are members of Actors' Equity Association. Classical Kids recordings marketed by The Children's Group.
VSO Instrument Fair The Kids' Koncerts series continues with the popular VSO Instrument Fair, which allows music lovers of all ages (but especially kids!) to touch and play real orchestra instruments in the Orpheum lobby one hour before concert start time. All instruments are generously provided by Tom Lee Music.
Gordon Gerrard conductor
Paul received a BFA in Acting from the University of Illinois and, as a long-time member of Actor’s Equity Association, has Gordon Gerrard is a respected figure in the gained extensive theatrical experience new generation of Canadian musicians. performing in over fifty professional Trained first as a pianist and subsequently productions throughout Chicago and abroad. as a specialist in operatic repertoire, Gordon He has appeared in such long running brings a fresh perspective to the podium. commercial hits as Peter Pan (Peter), Joseph For four seasons Gordon held the positions and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat of Resident Conductor and Repetiteur for Calgary Opera. He led many productions while (Benjamin) and Forever Plaid (Sparky), the in residence in Calgary, and has subsequently latter of which he has also directed and choreographed at major theatres across the been invited back to help launch Calgary country. In addition to film and television Opera’s summer opera festival Opera in the appearances, he has produced and directed Village with productions of Candide and several tolerance-related short films and The Pirates of Penzance. Gordon has also conducted productions for Opera Hamilton to has directed and choreographed live critical acclaim, and was Assistant Conductor industrial shows for corporations such as for several productions at Opera Lyra Ottawa. Target and Mobil. Gordon returns to Opera McGill this season to lead a production of Le Nozze di Figaro. series creator After two successful seasons as Assistant Conductor of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Gordon has recently been promoted to the newly created post of Associate Conductor.
Paul Pement director & producer Paul holds an exclusive licensing agreement with the award-winning Classical Kids organization to produce the highly-acclaimed symphony concert series that includes Beethoven Lives Upstairs, Tchaikovsky Discovers America, Vivaldi’s Ring of Mystery, Hallelujah Handel and Mozart's Magnificent Voyage. As executive and artistic director of Classical Kids Music Education, NFP, Mr. Pement oversees all business and artistic aspects of the Classical Kids Live! theatrical concert productions around the world. www.classicalkidslive.com 32 allegro
Susan has created a whole new generation of classical music fans through her innovative and award-winning Classical Kids recordings. She is the executive producer of a sixteen title series of children’s classical music recordings known collectively as Classical Kids, selling to date nearly five million CDs, DVDs and books worldwide, and earning over 100 prestigious awards and honors. Each story entails its own adventure featuring a unique combination of music, history, and theatricality to engage the imaginations of children. Susan holds the philosophy that, “Where the heart goes, the mind will follow.” An accomplished concert pianist and music teacher, Hammond searched for recordings about classical music to share with her young daughters. One day, she sat reading to her girls with a classical music radio station on in the background and noticed how they responded to the literature
in a different way when enhanced by music. The rest, as they say, is history. Susan is the recipient of Billboard Magazine’s International Achievement Award and resides with her husband in Toronto where she is a member of the Order of Canada for her contribution to the arts.
Barbara Nichol author Barbara is an award-winning author and filmmaker. Her book Dippers was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award, and Biscuits in the Cupboard won the Mr. Christie’s Book Award. She is also well known as the author and director of the Juno award-winning original recording of Beethoven Lives Upstairs and author of the book by the same title. She was awarded a Genie for Best Short Film for Home for Blind Women and was nominated for an Emmy for her work with Sesame Street. Barbara Nichol has published four books with Tundra, including Safe and Sound, Trunks All Aboard: An Elephant ABC, and Dippers.
Andrew Redlawsk Christoph
Andrew Redlawsk is proud to have spent seven seasons bringing classic composers to life for young people around the globe. Originally from Iowa, Andrew has lived and performed all over America and currently resides in New York. When he's not performing with Classical Kids, he tours with Oh What A Night! — A Tribute to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons both on land and at sea on Norwegian Cruise Lines. New York credits include: Stealing time and Greenwood (NYMF), BJ: A Musical Romp (Planet Connections Festivity), The Bowery Boys (NAMT), Together This Time (NYC Fringe), Assassins and Godspell (Momentum Repertory Company). Andrew is also currently working on his debut film, an adventure documentary entitled Just Go.
Thad Avery Uncle
Mr. Avery performs for Classical Kids Live! as both Uncle in Beethoven Lives Upstairs and Tchaikovsky in Tchaikovsky Discovers America. He is based in Chicago with his wife Cheryl, and two children, Spencer and Grace. A proud union member of all three performing
unions, he received his training from Wayne State University in Detroit. Thad was a company member of Utah Shakespearean Festival, traveled around the world with an international comedy troupe and has a long and rewarding relationship with the musical Forever Plaid which took him from Door County, WI to the first national tour, to Las Vegas, and back home to Chicago. Other appearances in Chicago include: I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change, The Wizard of Oz, Charlotte's Web, Alice in Wonderland, and The Nutcracker.
Classical Kids Music Education, NFP Classical Kids Music Education, NFP was formed for charitable and educational purposes to build pathways for progression in music so that all young people, whatever their background or abilities, have access to the rich and diverse range of influence classical music offers. Reduced funding to the arts has diminished the ability of many symphony orchestras to provide high-quality educational and family programs like the one you are seeing today. It is imperative that more organizations are able to reach students and families through excellent music education programs in a time when affordable and worthy programming is lacking. Classical Kids Music Education, NFP was created to “bridge the gap” by securing funding for high-caliber projects and, together with individual donor support, help to bring music education into the 21st century by creating more opportunities for young people to be exposed to their interest and develop their talents to the fullest. Please visit www.ckme.org to learn more about how you can help. ■
Actors’ Equity Association Actors and Stage Managers are members of Actors’ Equity Association. Actors' Equity Association, founded in 1913, is the labor union that represents more than 45,000 Actors and Stage Managers in the United States. Equity seeks to advance, promote and foster the art of live theatre as an essential component of our society. Equity negotiates wages and working conditions and provides a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans, for its members. Actors' Equity is a member of the AFL-CIO, and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions. allegro 33
The Vancouver Symphony gratefully acknowledges the generosity of these community leaders whose ongoing annual support makes it possible to present 150 passionate performances and inspiring education and community programs every year. Thank you for your loyalty and commitment to the VSO’s ongoing success.
GOLD BATON CLUB Gifts from $50,000 and Up Dr. Peter and Mrs. Stephanie Chung Mrs. Irene McEwen* Mr. Alan and Mrs. Gwendoline Pyatt*
Maestro Bramwell Tovey and Mrs. Lana Penner-Tovey* Arthur H. Willms Family* Gordon Young Anonymous
Stanis and Joanne Smith Leon and Joan Tuey* Mrs. Jane Wang Fei Wong Anonymous (2)
MAESTRO'S CIRCLE Gifts from $35,000 to $49,999 Heathcliff Foundation* The R & J Stern Family Foundation
PRINCIPAL PLAYERS Gifts from $7,500 to $9,999 Mrs. Joyce E. Clarke Dave Cunningham In Memory of John Hodge* Kenneth W. and Ellen L. Mahon* Mollie Massie and Hein Poulus* Mr. Ken and Mrs. Patricia Shields
BENEFACTORS Gifts from $3,500 to $4,999 Mr. Hans and Mrs. Nancy Alwart Kathy and Stephen Bellringer* Hank and Janice Ketcham Prof. Kin Lo* Mr. and Mrs. Hebert Menten* Christine Nicolas Dr. Rosemary Wilkinson Dr. and Mrs. Edward Yeung
Gifts from $25,000 to $34,999 Mr. Gerald McGavin, C.M., O.B.C. and Mrs. Sheahan McGavin* Michael and Irene Webb CONCERTMASTER'S CIRCLE Gifts from $15,000 to $24,999 The Christopher Foundation (Education Fund) Martha Lou Henley, C.M.* Lagniappe Foundation Michael O’Brian Family Foundation Mr. Fred Withers and Dr. Kathy Jones Anonymous* Gifts from $10,000 to $14,999 Larry and Sherrill Berg Mary and Gordon Christopher Foundation* Mr. and Mrs. G.A. Cooper Mrs. Margaret M. Duncan The Gudewill Family Werner (Vern) and Helga Höing* Ms. Sumiko Hui Yoshiko Karasawa McGrane-Pearson Endowment Fund Mr. Brian W. and Mrs. Joan Mitchell Andrè and Julie Molnar Thomas and Lorraine Skidmore
Gifts from $5,000 to $7,499 Dr. and Mrs. J. Abel Jeff and Keiko Alexander* Eric and Alex Bretsen Etienne Bruson Dr. Don and Mrs. Susan Cameron Philip and Pauline Chan Ian and Frances Dowdeswell Elisabeth and David Finch Cathy Grant Mr. Sam and Mrs. Patti Gudewill Hillary Haggan Diane Hodgins Dr. Marla Kiess* Judi and David Korbin Sam and Anita Lee The Lutsky Families Bruce and Margo MacDonald Roy Millen and Ruth Webber Mirhady Family Fund, held at the Vancouver Foundation John Hardie Mitchell Family Foundation John Slater and Patrick Wang
Gifts from $2,500 to $3,499 Anako Foundation Ann Claire Angus Fund Nicholas Asimakopulos Betsy Bennett* The Ken Birdsall Fund Gerhard and Ariane Bruendl* Marnie Carter* Janis and Bill Clarke Edward Colin and Alanna Nadeau Ms. Judy Garner Heather Holmes John and Daniella Icke* Olga Ilich Herbert Jenkin Gordon and Kelly Johnson Don and Lou Laishley M. Lois Milson In Honour of Jocelyn Morlock Joan Morris in loving Memory of Dr. Hugh C. Morris
For more information about the Patrons' Circle and the exclusive benefits associated with this program, please contact Mary Butterfield Director, Individual & Legacy Giving at
604.684.9100 ext. 238 or email email@example.com. 34 allegro
Vince and Noella Ready Joan and Michael Riley Mr. and Mrs. Maurice A. Roden Bernard Rowe and Annette Stark Dr. Earl and Mrs. Anne Shepherd Ms. Dorothy P. Shields Wallace and Gloria Shoemay Mrs. Mary Anne Sigal Mel and June Tanemura* George and Marsha Taylor* Mr. and Mrs. David H. Trischuk Michael R. Williams Bruce Munro Wright Anonymous* Anonymous PATRONS Gifts from $2,000 to $2,499 Count Enrico and Countess Aline Dobrzensky Ann Ehrcke and Michael Levy In Memory of Betty Howard Mr. Hassan and Mrs. Nezhat Khosrowshahi* Bill and Risa Levine Agnes Loh In Tribute of late Johnny Loh Violet and Bruce Macdonald Nancy and Frank Margitan Dr. Robert S. Rothwell*
Bella Tata* Mark Tindle and Leslie Cliff Arthur Toft in Memory of Fred and Minnie Toft Anonymous (2) Gifts from $1,500 to $1,999 Gordon and Minke Armstrong Derek and Stella Atkins Mr. R. Paul and Mrs. Elizabeth Beckmann Roberta Lando Beiser* Dr. and Mrs. J. Deen Brosnan Mrs. May Brown, C.M., O.B.C.* Mr. Justice Edward Chiasson and Mrs. Dorothy Chiasson* Doug and Anne Courtemanche Leanne Davis and Vern Griffiths Barbara J. Dempsey Jean Donaldson Sharon F. Douglas Darren Downs and Jacqueline Harris Dennis Friesen in Memory of Gwen Friesen Mrs. San Given Anna and Alan Gove Marietta Hurst* Michael and Estelle Jacobson* D.L. Janzen in Memory of Jeannie Kuyper Signe Jurcic and C.V. Kent Drs. Colleen Kirkham and Stephen Kurdyak
Uri and Naomi Kolet in honor of Aviva’s New York Ordination Hugh and Judy Lindsay Hank and Andrea Luck Art and Angela Monahan Nancy Morrison Dal and Muriel Richards Dr. William H. and Ruthie Ross Mrs. Joan Scobell David and Cathy Scott Dr. Peter and Mrs. Sandra Stevenson-Moore Dr. Ian and Jane Strang L. Thom Garth and Lynette Thurber Nico and Linda Verbeek Dr. Brian Willoughby Eric and Shirley Wilson Dr. I.D. Woodhouse Nancy Wu Anonymous (3) ■ * Members of the Patrons’ Circle who have further demonstrated their support by making an additional gift to the Vancouver Symphony Foundation’s endowment fund.
S P EC IA L S OR P H EU M T H EAT R E , 8 P M
Wednesday, May 20 PwC Presents
Symphonic Overdrive: Randy Bachman with the VSO Gordon Gerrard conductor Randy Bachman Brent Knudsen guitar/vocals Mick Dalla Vicenza bass/vocals Marc LaFrance drums/vocals Charles Cozens piano RANDY BACHMAN
Prairie Town Looking Out For No. 1 These Eyes Laughing Let It Ride ‘Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers American Woman
INTERMISSION No Sugar Tonight No Time She Came Undun You Ain't Seen Nothin’ Yet Taking Care of Business
VISIT THE SYMPHONY GIFT SHOP FOR CD SELECTIONS
Gordon Gerrard conductor For a biography of Gordon Gerrard please refer to page 32.
Randy Bachman Born in Winnipeg, Randy Bachman has become a legendary figure in the rock n’ roll world through his talents as a guitarist, songwriter, performer and producer. He has earned over 120 gold and platinum album/singles awards around the world for performing and producing. His songwriting has garnered him the coveted #1 spot on radio playlists in over 20 countries and he has amassed over 40 million records sold. His songs have been recorded by numerous other artists and placed in
dozens of television, movie and commercial soundtracks. His music has provided a veritable soundtrack of the last 30 years of popular music. Noted for his contributions as an iconic Canadian rock musician, and support for emerging artists through his production work, Randy Bachman has received many awards, including the Order of Canada, which is Canada’s highest civilian honour for lifetime achievement, and most recently, was inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame in Nashville. This year marked his second induction into the Canadian Musician’s Hall of Fame when BachmanTurner Overdrive are honoured at the 2014 JUNO® Awards. ■ allegro 37
Concert Program VS O C H A M B ER P LAY E R S
ALAN AND G W EN DOL IN E P YAT T HALL
D R. H . N . M A C CO R KIN D ALE STAG E VS O S C H OOL OF MUSIC
Thursday, May 21, 7:30pm Sunday, May 24, 2pm
BRAHMS String Quintet No.1 in F Major, Op. 88 Dale Barltrop violin Ashley Plaut violin Emilie Grimes viola Matthew Davies viola Olivia Blander cello HINDEMITH Trauermusik Matthew Davies viola Chiharu Iinuma piano
SCHUBERT Piano Quintet in A Major, D667 Trout Ashley Plaut violin Emilie Grimes viola Olivia Blander cello Dylan Palmer bass Chiharu Iinuma piano
For more program details, see the VSO website at vancouversymphony.ca
WITH SUPPORT FROM
Concert Program M A R D ON G R OUP IN SUR AN C E M U S IC A L LY S P E AKIN G OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Saturday, May 23
S U R REY N IG H T S B EL L P ERF ORM IN G ARTS C E N TR E , S U R REY, 8P M
Alexander Shelley conductor Janina Fialkowska piano
Sunday, May 24
LOUIE Infinite Sky with Birds RAVEL Piano Concerto in G Major
I. Allegramente II. Adagio assai III. Presto
Symphony No. 5 in B-flat Major, D. 485
I. Allegro II. Andante con moto III. Menuetto: Allegro molto IV. Allegro vivace
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Alexander Shelley conductor Alexander Shelley was appointed Music Director-designate of Canada's National Arts Centre Orchestra in October 2013 and will take up the position of Music Director in September 2015. In 2014 he completed his fifth year as Chief Conductor of the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra where he has transformed the orchestra’s playing, education work and touring activities which have included tours to Italy, Belgium, China and a re-invitation to the Musikverein in Vienna. Born in the UK in 1979, Alexander first gained wide-spread attention when he was unanimously awarded first prize at the 2005 Leeds Conductors Competition. Since then he has been in demand from orchestras around the world including the Royal Philharmonic, the Philharmonia, City of Birmingham Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Stockholm Philharmonic, Mozarteum Orchester Salzburg, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, DSO Berlin, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Simon Bolivar, Seattle and Houston Symphony Orchestras. Further afield Alexander is a regular guest with the top Asian and Australasian orchestras.
Janina Fialkowska piano For almost 40 years, Montréal-born Janina Fialkowska has been enchanting audiences and critics around the world. Ms. Fialkowska’s career was launched in 1974 when Arthur Rubinstein became her mentor after her prize-winning performance at his inaugural Master Piano Competition. She was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2001, and was also the recipient of the Governor General’s 2012 Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award in Classical Music. She has appeared as a guest soloist with prestigious international ensembles, and her vast discography includes award winning recordings such as Chopin Recital 2 which, in 2013, won the prestigious BBC Music Magazine’s Award as “Best Instrumental CD 42 allegro
of the year.” As the founder of the Piano Six music outreach program, she has championed works by Canadian composers and brought the joy of live classical music to thousands of Canadians living in remote communities. Engagements of the current season included concerts with the Houston Symphony, a tour with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and recital appearances in New York City, Montréal, London and Berlin.
Alexina Louie b. Vancouver, British Columbia / July 30, 1949
Infinite Sky with Birds One of Canada’s most sought-after composers, the two-time Juno award winner Alexina Louie has written for many of the country’s leading soloists, chamber ensembles, new music ensembles and orchestras. Her works have become part of the standard repertoire, in particular her many compositions for piano which are frequently performed by students and professionals alike. Her orchestral works have received important performances by such renowned conductors as Sir Andrew Davis, Leonard Slatkin, Charles Dutoit, Bramwell Tovey, Günther Herbig, Kent Nagano, Peter Oundjian and Carlos Kalmar. Infinite Sky with Birds was commissioned by the National Arts Centre Orchestra and premiered by them, Pinchas Zukerman conducting, in February 2006. “I started with the idea of the sight of hundreds of birds taking flight and the kind of exhilaration that I feel when I see that,” the composer has said. “My heart soars when I see that and I wanted to translate that into the music itself. It is an exploration of movement. I wanted to write a work that was, essentially, fast. While my other works do have virtuosic passages, in this composition speed was foremost in my mind. There are many tumbling passages, dense sections of movement (compared to static chords) and rapid repeated fragments that pass from one instrument to another or from one group of strings to another. In several instances these gestures create intricate textures. It is infused with light, motion and speed.”
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Ensure the VSO’s future with a special gift to the Vancouver Symphony Foundation, established to secure the long term success of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. The Vancouver Symphony family extends its sincere thanks to these donors, whose gifts will ensure that the VSO remains a strong and vital force in our community long into the future. $4,000,000 or more Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage Endowment Incentives Program $1,000,000 or more Ron and Ardelle Cliff Martha Lou Henley, C.M. Province of BC through the BC Arts Renaissance Fund under the stewardship of the Vancouver Foundation Alan and Gwendoline Pyatt The Jim Pattison Foundation $500,000 or more Werner (Vern) and Helga Höing Wayne and Leslie Ann Ingram $250,000 or more Carter (Family) Deux Mille Foundation Mr. Hassan and Mrs. Nezhat Khosrowshahi The Tong and Geraldine Louie Family Foundation Arthur H. Willms Family $100,000 or more Mary and Gordon Christopher Janey Gudewill and Peter Cherniavsky In memory of their Father Jan Cherniavsky and Grandmother Mrs. B.T. Rogers Malcolm Hayes and Lester Soo In Memory of John S. Hodge Michael and Estelle Jacobson
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$1,000 or more Phyllis Victoria Ethel Bailly Joyce Basham Doris May Bond Kathleen Grace Boyle Kathleen Mary DeClercq Betty Dunhaver Jean Haszard Grace Barbara Isobel Hooper Lewis Wilkinson Hunter Annie Velma Pickell Jean Semple Wilhelmina Stobie ■
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Maurice Ravel b. Ciboure, Basses Pyrénées, France / March 7, 1875 d. Paris, France / December 28, 1937
Piano Concerto in G Major Ravel’s two piano concertos were his final major works. Even though he composed them during the same period, 1929–1931, they are quite different from each other. The Concerto in G Major for two hands is bright and breezy, while the Concerto for the Left Hand in D Major is a more sombre affair. One thing they share is the influence of jazz, which Ravel first heard during a concert tour of North America in 1928 and which proved highly attractive to him. This is how he described the G Major: “It is a concerto in the truest sense of the word, written very much in the same spirit as those of Mozart and Saint-Saëns. The music of a concerto, in my opinion, should be lighthearted and brilliant, and not aim at profundity or at dramatic effects. Too many classical concertos were composed not so much ‘for’ as ‘against’ the piano. I had thought of entitling mine divertissement but the title ‘concerto’ is specific enough.” Ravel’s original plan for the premiere was to perform the solo part himself. Despite a great deal of practicing, he reached the conclusion that its virtuoso demands lay beyond his powers. Deciding to switch his contribution to conducting, he chose celebrated pianist Marguerite Long as the soloist. The first performance took place in Paris on January 14, 1932, with Ravel conducting the Lamoureux Orchestra. The opening movement balances the playful and the dreamy. Ravel deploys his orchestra with a maximum of colourful ingenuity. Complete and utterly bewitching contrast comes in the slow movement. Marguerite Long called its principal theme, which the soloist introduces unaccompanied, “one of the most touching melodies which has come from the human heart.” After a climax of restrained melancholy, the music gradually and nostalgically winds down to a peaceful reprise of its beginning. The finale is a headlong chase led by the soloist. Ravel
dotted its breakneck course with mischievous tunes, pizzicato strings and playfully jingling percussion.
Franz Schubert b. Vienna, Austria / January 31, 1797 d. Vienna, Austria / November 19, 1828
Symphony No. 5 in B-flat Major, D. 485 In 1808, Schubert began a five-year term of study at Vienna’s Choir School of the Imperial Chapel. The student orchestra, in which he played the viola, performed symphonies by Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven. Naturally for a budding composer involved with an orchestra, he began writing music for it to play. His earliest works for large forces date from this period. After graduation, and at his family’s insistence, he continued his education with the aim of following his father into the profession of schoolmaster. After three miserable years he left the classroom and took up his true calling, music. He composed Symphony No. 5 in 1816. It is a genial and thoroughly refreshing piece, the finest of the first six. It contains just enough hints of darker emotions to lend it substance. After one, private performance soon after its completion, it vanished for 50 years. In 1867, the English musicians Sir Arthur Sullivan and Sir George Grove made a pilgrimage to Vienna, specifically in search of forgotten nuggets of Schubertiana. They brought to light this symphony and other treasures. Constructed on themes radiating youthful optimism, the first movement is brisk and as light as a feather. The second movement displays Schubert the lyrical genius of song, operating here in a mode of gently reflective melancholy. Moments of emotional unease crop up, but they are soothed into submission by the music’s gentle onward flow. The outer panels of the following menuetto bear their share of shadowy feelings, too. The central trio section, on the other hand, brings the sweet freshness of a spring morning. Schubert clears the air for good with a flashing, carefree romp of a finale. ■ Program Notes © 2015 Don Anderson
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Concert Program C L A S S IC A L T R AD ITIO N S C H A N C EN T RE FO R T H E P ER F OR M ING ARTS, 8 PM
Friday & Saturday, May 29 & 30 N ORT H S H OR E C LASSIC S C EN T EN N IA L T HE ATR E , N ORT H VA N C OUV E R , 8 P M
Monday, June 1 Jun Märkl conductor Karen Gomyo violin PROKOFIEV
Symphony No. 1 in D Major, Op. 25 Classical
I. Allegro II. Larghetto III. Gavotta: non troppo allegro IV. Finale: Molto vivace
Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64
I. Allegro molto appassionato II. Andante III. Allegretto non troppo – Allegro molto vivace
Le Bourgeois gentilhomme: Suite, Op. 60
I. II. III. IV. V.
Overture to Act One Menuett – The Dancing Master The Fencing Master Entrance and Dance of the Tailors The Menuett of Lully
THE PRESENTATION OF THE CLASSICAL TRADITIONS SERIES IS MADE POSSIBLE, IN PART, THROUGH THE GENEROUS ASSISTANCE OF THE CHAN FOUNDATION AT UBC, AND THE CHAN CENTRE FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS.
Jun Märkl conductor Jun Märkl conducts the world’s leading orchestras, and has long been a highly respected interpreter of the core Germanic repertoire from both the symphonic and operatic traditions, and more recently for his refined and idiomatic Debussy, Ravel and Messiaen. He was Music Director of the Orchestre National de Lyon from 2005–11 and of the MDR Symphony Orchestra Leipzig until 2012. In 2012 he was honoured by the French Ministry of Culture with the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. Born in Munich, his (German) father was a distinguished Concertmaster and his (Japanese) mother a solo pianist. Märkl studied violin, piano and conducting at the Musikhochschule in Hannover, going on to study with Sergiu Celibidache in Munich and with Gustav Meier in Michigan. In 1986 he won the conducting competition of the Deutsche Musikrat and a year later won a scholarship from the Boston Symphony Orchestra to study at Tanglewood with Leonard Bernstein and Seiji Ozawa. Soon afterwards he had a string of appointments in European opera houses followed by his first music directorships at the Staatstheater in Saarbrücken (1991–94) and at the Mannheim Nationaltheater (1994–2000).
Karen Gomyo violin Born in Tokyo, violinist Karen Gomyo grew up in Montreal and New York. Recipient of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2008, she has been hailed by the Chicago Tribune as “a first-rate artist of real musical command, vitality, brilliance and intensity.” Ms. Gomyo’s extensive solo appearances include many of the world’s leading orchestras including the New York and Hong Kong Philharmonics; the Sydney, Toronto, San Francisco and National Symphonies; the Salzburg Camerata, the Cleveland Orchestra, and many more. She has performed recitals and chamber music at festivals in the U.S. (Aspen, Ravinia, Caramoor, Mostly Mozart), Canada, Austria, Germany, France, Norway Ukraine, Holland, Spain, Italy, and Japan. 48 allegro
Ms. Gomyo plays the rare “Ex Foulis” Stradivarius of 1703 that was bought for her exclusive use by a private sponsor. She makes her home in New York City.
Sergei Prokofiev b. Sontsovka, Ukraine / April 27, 1891 d. Moscow, Russia / March 5, 1953
Symphony No. 1 in D Major, Op. 25 Classical “It seemed to me that had Haydn lived in our day he would have retained his own style while accepting something of the new at the same time,” Prokofiev wrote. “That was the kind of symphony I wanted to write: a symphony in the classical style. And when I saw that my idea was beginning to work, I called it the ‘Classical’ Symphony: in the first place because it was simpler, and secondly for the fun of it, to ‘tease the geese,’ and in the secret hope that I would prove to be right if the symphony really did achieve the status of a classic.” He conducted the premiere in Petrograd, Russia, on April 21, 1918, launching what has become one of his most beloved and frequently performed works. The first movement opens with a flourish and a pert, cheeky theme. The second subject, appearing on the violins, is equally saucy and impudent, underpinned by pokerfaced bassoon commentary. A dreamy slow movement follows. At a gentle walking pace, the first violins sing the sweet, restful main theme, bedecked with bird-like, rococo-style trills. Prokofiev poked gentle fun at aristocratic figures in powdered wigs in the brief, pungent gavotte, a French folk dance dating back to the baroque period. The symphony wraps up with a joyful, breakneck finale, filled to the brim with demanding writing for the entire orchestra.
Felix Mendelssohn b. Hamburg, Germany / February 3, 1809 d. Leipzig, Germany / November 4, 1847
Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64 In 1835, Mendelssohn took up the post of Music Director of the Gewandhaus Orchestra of Leipzig. Under his patient, exacting supervision, only a few years passed before its concerts came to be considered the finest given in Europe. The concertmaster, Ferdinand David,
made important contributions to that upgrading process. In gratitude, Mendelssohn composed this concerto for him. David performed the premiere, in Leipzig, on March 13, 1845.
“The concerto is a beautifully polished work of art, combining sureness of construction with passion, warmth and playfulness.” The concerto is a beautifully polished work of art, combining sureness of construction with passion, warmth and playfulness. In a nod to Romantic practice, Mendelssohn directed that the three sections be played without any breaks between them. This gives the concerto greater cohesiveness and momentum. The majority of the dramatic content plays out in the urgent first movement. The second movement is an interlude of gentle melodic beauty. A brief bridge passage ushers in the impish finale. Its solo fireworks are backed by the kind of featherylight orchestration that was a Mendelssohn trademark.
Richard Strauss b. Munich, Germany / June 11, 1864 d. Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany / Sept 8, 1949
Le Bourgeois gentilhomme: Suite, Op. 60 French playwright Molière’s comedy Le Bourgeois gentilhomme (The Middle-Class Gentleman) premiered at the Imperial Palace of Versailles in 1670, complete with an elaborate music score by Jean-Baptiste Lully. The plot concerns Monsieur Jourdain, born in the lower classes but newly rich, and his fumbling attempts to take on the manners and lifestyle of the aristocracy. Richard Strauss and librettist Hugo von Hofmannsthal scored a huge hit with Der Rosenkavalier (The Knight of the Rose, 1911), a luscious romantic opera set in Vienna during the eighteenth century. For their next project, Hofmannsthal decided to merge two ideas he had been considering separately. One was a new edition of Le Bourgeois gentilhomme, with incidental music by Strauss, and the other a comic opera. His plan was to replace the farcical Turkish ceremony that concludes Molière’s play with a full opera, commanded
by Monsieur Jourdain for the entertainment of his dinner guests. The combined, five-hour extravaganza debuted in Stuttgart in 1912 and flopped badly. Not wishing to abandon their creation, Strauss and Hofmannsthal decided to split it in two. The opera, Ariadne auf Naxos, premiered in 1916 and went on to a successful international life. The play-with-music, with additional numbers, failed again in 1918. Undaunted, Strauss created this concert suite out of his score’s choicest numbers. He uses his orchestra of 37 players with a master’s touch, reducing it to chamber-like delicacy when appropriate, ingeniously making it sound like a full symphonic body when richer textures were called for. The Overture represents the bustling atmosphere in M. Jourdain’s lavish new home. A dancing instructor unsuccessfully attempts to work with the master, to the tune of a delicate Menuett. Brass and piano introduce a fencing master whose efforts to teach the awkward M. Jourdain the fine art of wielding a sword also come to grief. Couturiers clothe their employer in his new finery in the Entrance and Dance of the Tailors; a solo violin leads them in a delectable Gavotte.
“A gracious intermezzo leads to the suite’s most elaborate section...” The gentle Menuett of Lully (derived from the original 1670 Bourgeois gentilhomme music) and the following, more animated Courante are brief, sweetly scored dances. Strauss borrowed a slow, noble theme from Lully’s ballet, George Dandin, to accompany the entrance of Cléonte, suitor of M. Jourdain’s daughter Lucille. A gracious intermezzo leads to the suite’s most elaborate section, which accompanies each course of the lavish dinner. Strauss crammed it with witty musical quotations: the ‘Rhine’ theme from Wagner’s Ring operas for the fish course; his own Don Quixote for lamb, and Der Rosenkavalier for birds. Finally a kitchen boy leaps out from under an ‘omelet surprise’ pan and leads the entire company in a merry waltz. ■ Program Notes © 2015 Don Anderson
Concert Program VA N C OU VER S UN S Y M P H ON Y AT TH E AN N E X A N N EX , 7: 30P M
Sunday, May 31
The Emperor’s Daughter Gordon Gerrard conductor Lan Tung erhu/vocalist LEILEI TIAN Burning Rose DINUK WIJERATNE
Chamber Concerto About Sankhara
LAN TUNG (Hopefully) Happily Ever After GEORGE BENJAMIN At First Light
Gordon Gerrard conductor VISIT THE SYMPHONY GIFT SHOP FOR CD SELECTIONS SYMPHONY AT THE ANNEX SERIES SPONSOR
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Leilei Tian b. Beijing, China / July 31, 1971
Burning Rose Leilei Tian was born in 1971 in China and studied composition at the Central Conservatory of Music, Beijing and at the Conservatory of Music, Göteborg, Sweden; after attending an electro-acoustic music course at IRCAM, she settled in Paris. Tian is the winner of several prestigious international competitions including the Besançon Composition Competition for Orchestra in France, Contemporary Music Contest "Citta' di Udine" in Italy, Gaudeamus Competition in Amsterdam, Composition Competition of GRAME in Lyon and ISCM Cash Young Composer’s Award of “World Music Days” in Zürich. From 2006 to 2008, she was the resident composer of CoMA Contemporary Music Center in Sweden. Most recently, having been awarded the Prix de Rome by the Academy of France, she had a one-year residency at the Villa Médicis from 2012 to 2013.
Burning Rose – “Kindled by the dews falling from the heaven, a burning rose cried out her flame. While her most precious perfume ascended to her Eternal Love, a new rose bursts into being from the ashes she left behind. Shining now in a unique redness, her Real Life finally begins....
“...inspired by the idea of Love and Sacrifice, Death and Resurrection.” The piece and its title are inspired by the idea of Love and Sacrifice, Death and Resurrection. It is a metaphor of a spiritual quest for True Love.” Program Notes © 2015 Leilei Tian & Jocelyn Morlock
Dinuk Wijeratne b. Colombo, Sri Lanka / 1978
Chamber Concerto About Sankhara Sri Lankan-born, Canada-based composer, performer, conductor and educator Dinuk Wijeratne has been described by the Toronto Star as ‘an artist who reflects a positive vision
of our cultural future,’ and by the New York Times as ‘exuberantly creative.’ His boundarycrossing work sees him equally at home in collaborations with symphony orchestras and string quartets, tabla players and DJs, and takes him to international venues as poles apart as the Berlin Philharmonic and the North Sea Jazz Festival. A firm believer in the universality of music, Dinuk founded the cutting-edge NYC-based multimedia group NEOLEXICA in 2003, a quartet which synesthetically combined live illustration with a uniquely multinational blend of acoustic & electronic music. He continues his collaborative recitals of entirely original works with acclaimed clarinetist Kinan Azmeh, based on their duo album entitled ‘Complex Stories, Simple Sounds.’ Chamber Concerto ‘About Sankhara’ is by turns frenetic, voluptuous, and languid. The concerto alternates raucous, rhythmically propulsive percussion, exotically jazz-inflected clarinet and oboe solos, and ecstatic dancelike sections for full ensemble with gently undulating, sparse passages, led by the strings, whose slow glissandi eventually make way for a driving and ferocious conclusion. Program Notes © 2015 Dinuk Wijeratne & Jocelyn Morlock
Lan Tung erhu/vocalist b. Taipei, Taiwan / October 1, 1973
(Hopefully) Happily Ever After Lan Tung’s music embodies rhythmic intricacy from Indian influence, the sense of breath/ space from Chinese tradition, and many years of experiences interpreting contemporary Canadian compositions as an erhu player. Incorporating improvisation and graphic notations, Lan's compositions experiment with contradictions by taking culturally specific materials outside their context. She studied graphic scoring with Barry Guy, improvisation with Mary Oliver, Hindustani music with Kala Ramnath, and Uyghur music with Abdukerim Osman, in addition to her studies of Chinese music since age ten. Lan has appeared as an erhu soloist with Orchestre Metropolitain (Montreal), Symphony Nova Scotia, Upstream Ensemble (Halifax), Atlas Ensemble (Amsterdam & Helsinki), and Little Giant Chinese Chamber Orchestra (Taipei). (Hopefully) Happily Ever After “…the prince and princess get married, and they live
happily ever after.” Does the story really end there? This piece draws materials from a famous Cantonese opera excerpt The Emperor’s Daughter to create a ghostly score that combines various graphics to prompt improvisation. Unwilling to live under the ruling of the Manchurian, the beautiful princess and her husband committed suicide on their wedding night. The piece portrays this couple’s final moments. Program Notes © 2015 Lan Tung & Jocelyn Morlock
George Benjamin b. London, United Kingdom / January 31, 1960
At First Light Composer, conductor, and pianist George Benjamin began piano studies at age seven, was composing by age nine, and began studying composition with Olivier Messiaen by age fourteen (!) An entire year of Benjamin’s studies with Messiaen consisted of writing chords upon chords, exploring every harmonic possibility imaginable. Not surprisingly, Benjamin’s music is notable for its sophisticated use of and focus on orchestral colour. “In the Tate Gallery there is a late Turner oil painting, Norham Castle, Sunrise. The 12th century castle in this picture is silhouetted against a huge, golden sun. What struck me immediately about this beautiful image was the way in which solid objects – fields, cows and the castle itself – virtually appear to have melted under the intense sunlight. It is as if the paint were still wet. Abstractly, this observation has been important to the way I have composed At First Light. A ‘solid object’ can be formed as a punctuated, clearly defined musical phrase. This can be ‘melted’ into a flowing, nebulous continuum of sound with all manner of transformations and interactions between these two ways of writing…this piece is a contemplation of dawn, a celebration of the colours and noises of daybreak, set in three movements. The short opening superimposed fanfares burst into hazy, undefined textures. After a pause the extended second movement follows, itself subdivided into several contrasted sections, full of abrupt changes in mood and tension. The attacca concluding movement progresses in a continuous, flowing line illuminated with ever more resonant harmonies.” ■ allegro 53
BRAMWELL TOVEY WITH THE VSO
S P EC IA L S OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Wednesday, June 3 Last Night of the Proms Bramwell Tovey conductor Vancouver Bach Choir
VISIT THE SYMPHONY GIFT SHOP FOR CD SELECTIONS
The Last Night of the Proms concert, a tradition started in 1895 at the Royal Albert Hall in London, has also become a VSO and Vancouver Bach Choir institution. Maestro Tovey proudly upholds the tradition in a performance featuring Pomp & Circumstance, Rule Britannia, Jerusalem, and much more!
VANCOUVER BACH CHOIR
Bramwell Tovey conductor For a biography of Maestro Tovey please refer to page 11.
Vancouver Bach Choir Situated in Vancouver, the gateway of the Pacific Rim, the Vancouver Bach Choir is an award-winning symphonic choir committed to offering vibrant and culturally diverse choral experiences to its audiences. As one of the largest choral organizations in Canada, the Vancouver Bach Choir explores a wide range of repertoire from the past to the present with passion and commitment. Through its series of concerts presented
THE VSO HAS
at the magnificent Orpheum Theatre, the VBC continues to meet its mandate of commissioning and performing works by British Columbian and Canadian composers and presenting the world’s favourite symphonic choral works. Over the past eight decades, the choir has performed with numerous world-class musicians. Under the baton of Maestro Leslie Dala, the VBC continues its mission and tradition to share the beauty of choral music with local, national and international communities. As the Vancouver Bach Choir celebrates its 84th anniversary in the 2014/2015 season, it is poised to enter the next exciting chapter. ■
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@VSOrchestra 56 allegro
A Tribute to Retiring VSO Musicians
Associate Concertmaster Joan Blackman has been a member of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra since the 1987â€“88 concert season and enjoys a vibrant musical life in our community. Besides playing in the orchestra, she is sought after as a first class chamber musician, teacher, and soloist all throughout North America. As Artistic Director of the Vetta Chamber Music and Recital Society, Joan looks forward to dedicating more of her time to growing the Society, its programs, and performances with the best of BCâ€™s talent along with invited guests from afar. She is also a member of the acclaimed American String Project, which brings together concertmasters and soloists throughout North America. Joanâ€™s contribution to the VSO over the years has been immeasurable, and we look forward with support and excitement as she moves on to the next phase of her musical life.
VSO Assistant Principal and Bass Clarinetist Cris Inguanti retires from the VSO at the end of this season after having joined the orchestra in the 1997-98 concert season. A sought after soloist, orchestral musician, and chamber music collaborator, Cris has also been a member of the Houston Ballet and Pacific Northwest Ballet Orchestras, the New York City Opera National Company Orchestra, and the New Philharmonia of Portugal. He has appeared as a soloist with orchestras in Europe and North America and has performed in a wide variety of chamber series. As a member of the Manhattan Wind Quintet, Cris has won numerous prizes in chamber music competitions, and has commissioned a number of new works for this genre. His contribution and dedication to the VSO is one that will be remembered with fondness, and we wish him all the best in his future musical and personal journeys.
Please join us in thanking Joan and Cris for their years of inspiring performances and dedicated service to the VSO and the music community in Vancouver. allegro 57
VANCOUVER SYMPHONY BALL COMMITTEE
Mary Ann Clark, Co-Chair Laura Hansen, Co-Chair Nezhat Khosrowshahi, Honorary Chair Margaret Brodie Debra Finlay Colin Hansen Annabel Hawksworth Diane Hodgins Cathryn Hunter Andrea Jacob Nazmeen Lalji Barabara-Jo McIntosh AJ McLean Christian Martin Maria Menten Karin Smith Kim Spencer-Nairn Colin Upright Art Willms Fred Withers PAINTED VIOLIN ARTISTS
Cori Creed Shawn Hunt Cathryn Jenkins Tiko Kerr
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On February 12, 2015, the VSO held its 25th Anniversary Vancouver Symphony Ball— the sold out event was our biggest and most successful yet! Thanks to the generous support of our dedicated sponsors, live and silent auction contributors, donors, volunteers, and the tireless efforts of our planning committee, $925,000 was raised to support the VSO’s performances and education initiatives this season. The VSO and Vancouver Symphony Ball Committee extend their gratitude and sincere thanks to the following for their generosity and in-kind contributions. SUPER SPONSORS
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Concert Program G OL D C ORP M ASTE RWO R KS GO LD OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Saturday & Monday, June 6 & 8
Bramwell Tovey conductor Tracy Dahl soprano (Cunégonde) Judith Forst mezzo-soprano (The Old Lady) Alek Shrader tenor (Candide) Richard Suart baritone (Narrator, Voltaire, Pangloss, Martin, Cacambo) UBC Opera Ensemble (Chorus) Sheldon Baxter baritone (Maximilian) Geoffrey Schellenberg baritone (Captain) J Patrick Raftery tenor (Governor) Francesca Corrado soprano (Paquette) Spencer Britten tenor (Vanderdendur) Tony Caruso tenor (Cosmetic Merchant, Charles Edward) Duncan Watts-Grant tenor (Doctor, Croupier) Elliot Harder tenor & bass-baritone (Bear Keeper, Inquisitor III/Judge, Tsar Ivan) Brent MacKenzie tenor (Alchemist) Jason Klippenstein baritone (Junkman, Inquisitor II/Judge/Senor II) Alireza Mojibian tenor (Señor I, Sultan Achmet, Hermann Augustus) Jeremiah Carag tenor (Inquisitor I/Judge) William Grossman tenor (Ragotski) Tony Bittar tenor (Crook) BERNSTEIN Candide PRE-CONCERT TALKS
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Bramwell Tovey conductor For a biography of Maestro Tovey please refer to page 11.
of extraordinary versatility and one which encompassed virtually all styles and periods and which has extended into the soprano repertoire as well.
Tracy Dahl soprano
Alek Shrader conductor
With her 2006 debut at La Scala as Zerbinetta in Ariadne auf Naxos, Canada's premier coloratura soprano Tracy Dahl has taken another milestone in a career that has brought her together with such opera houses as the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Canadian Opera Company, and the Chatelet in Paris, to name a few. Highlights of 2011/12 include two trips to Australia with the Melbourne and Sydney symphonies, works by Bach and Mozart with the Vancouver Symphony, and the title role of Maria Stuarda with Pacific Opera Victoria. Her discography includes A Disney Spectacular with the Cincinnati Pops (Telarc), Glitter and Be Gay with the Calgary Philharmonic (CBC), A Gilbert and Sullivan Gala with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (CBC), and Love Walked In, a Gershwin collection with the Bramwell Tovey Trio (Red Phone Box Company).
The brilliant lyric tenor Alek Shrader continues to impress audiences with the “luxury of his phrasing, the clarity of his diction and the sensitivity and expressiveness of his characterizations”. In the 2014/2015 season, Mr. Shrader returns to the San Francisco Opera to sing the role of Emilio in Handel’s Partenope¸ followed by a return to the Metropolitan Opera for Camille in a new production of Franz Lehár’s The Merry Widow. Other engagements include Jupiter & Apollo in Handel’s Semele with the Seattle Opera, singing one of his signature roles, Count Almaviva, in Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia at the Canadian Opera Company, and a return to Santa Fe Opera for Donizetti’s La Fille du Regiment. In concert, Mr Shrader will sing the title-role in Candide with the Vancouver Symphony. Future engagements include leading roles with San Francisco Opera, Opera Philadelphia, Theater an der Wien, and Welsh National Opera.
Judith Forst mezzo-soprano
Richard Suart baritone
Canadian born mezzo-soprano Judith Forst has been highly acclaimed for her operatic and concert performances throughout North America and in Europe in many of the world’s most prestigious theaters which have included the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Bavarian State Opera, Munich, Netherlands Opera, Dallas Opera, Washington Opera, Vancouver Opera, and the Santa Fe Opera among many others. Judith Forst is now most identified with roles such as the Kostelnicka in Janacek's Jenufa, Klytemnestra in Strauss's Elektra, Herodias in Salome and Mme de Croissy in Poulenc's Dialogues des Carmelites, the Countess in Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades, Augusta Tabor in Moore’s The Ballad of Baby Doe, the Baroness in Barber’s Vanessa and the Witch in Hansel und Gretel. Prior to expanding into this repertoire, she had sung a repertoire
Richard Suart studied at the Royal Academy of Music and is much sought after in music theatre, contemporary opera, and as a comedian in the more standard repertoire. Recent engagements include Punch in Punch and Judy (Berlin), Major-General Stanley in The Pirates of Penzance (Scottish Opera), Jack Point in The Yeomen of the Guard and Major-General (RTE Concert Orchestra), Pangloss in Candide (LA Philharmonic‚ Hollywood Bowl), Mr Walter in Afterlife (Melbourne Festival‚ Holland Festival‚ L’Opéra National de Lyon), Ko-Ko in The Mikado (English National Opera) and Lord Chancellor in Iolanthe (San Francisco Symphony). He has appeared as Major-General in The Pirates of Penzance, Frank in Die Fledermaus, Baron Zeta in The Merry Widow and Benoit/ Alcindoro in La Bohème (ENO), French Ambassador in Of Thee I Sing, Snookfield
in Let 'Em Eat Cake and Barabashkin in Paradise Moscow (Opera North and Bregenz), Stan Stock in the premiere of Benedict Mason's Playing Away (Opera North, Bregenz and St Pölten) and in Mason's Chaplinoperas with the Ensemble Modern (Germany, Portugal, Holland and Austria).
UBC Opera Ensemble The University of British Columbia Opera Ensemble was founded by Canadian lyric coloratura Nancy Hermiston in 1995. Beginning with a core of seven performers, Miss Hermiston has built the program to a 90-member company, performing three main productions at UBC every season, seven Opera Tea Concerts, and several engagements with local community partners. The Ensemble’s mission is to educate young, gifted opera singers, preparing them for international careers. Past main stage productions have included Le Nozze di Figaro, Die Zauberflöte, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Suor Angelica, La Bohème, Dido and Aeneas, The Merry Widow, Manon, Eugene Onegin, Falstaff, Don Giovanni,
Cendrillon, Albert Herring, the Western Canadian premiere of Harry Somers’ Louis Riel, The Crucible, Rusalka, Così fan tutte, Dialogues des Carmélites, and Carmen. 2014/2015 Season includes The Bartered Bride, Le Nozze di Figaro and La Traviata. They will be travelling to the Czech Republic this summer performing Smetena’s opera The Bartered Bride.
Leonard Bernstein b. Lawrence, Massachusetts, USA / August 25, 1918 d. New York, New York, USA / October 14, 1990
Candide Few classical musicians have been known to as many people as Leonard Bernstein. The multiple roles he filled brilliantly – conductor, composer, pianist, writer, broadcaster, and recording artist – and his huge, outgoing personality, together made him the twentieth century’s finest goodwill ambassador of music. He composed on a regular basis. His catalogue came to include ballets, chamber music, symphonies and operas, as well as songs and Broadway shows. Some were more successful than others, artistically as well as commercially.
But virtually all Bernstein’s music glows with the particular blend of warmth and exuberance that characterized the man himself. Candide and West Side Story came into being during the same period, the mid-1950s. West Side Story was a huge success from the start, but Candide has had a troubled history. It was the celebrated playwright Lillian Hellman who suggested that she and Bernstein collaborate on a musical version of the satirical story Candide, by the eminent French author, Voltaire (1694-1778, birth name François-Marie Arouet). It tells the story of a naïve young man’s globetrotting adventures and how they make a kind, caring person out of him. Hellman was known for such heavy dramas as The Little Foxes and Watch on the Rhine. Her rather charmless book for Candide was the major reason for its disappointing seventy-three performance premiere run on Broadway in 1956. Over the following 30 years, several revisions were undertaken. Candide reached its final form, at least the last one in which Bernstein was involved, in 1988, two years before Bernstein’s death. This version, premiered in Glasgow by Scottish Opera, will be performed at this concert. The plot moves quickly and changes locale frequently. It finds room for satire, romance, drama and adventure. It’s filled with colourful, fascinating characters, and the music is continuously appealing and tuneful.
Here are some of the musical highlights of the score. The Overture, which has taken on a life of its own as Bernstein’s most frequently performed concert work, is based entirely on themes from the full score. It quickly establishes Candide’s overall boisterous mood, but includes its share of lyrical elements, too. The music of Scene One is pointedly cute and naïve, a satire of the generally sweet but one-dimensional characters and music of many traditional operas, especially those of the bel canto school of the early nineteenth century (Rossini, Bellini, Donizetti). The number called The Best of All Possible Worlds makes fun of equally simple-minded philosophies. Candide’s Meditation, It Must Be So, presents the first music in the score that has any trace of warmth or tenderness. It underlines his essential goodness and his genuine longing to make sense of the world. It offers the audience an opportunity to establish sympathy with him, an essential element in the show’s emotional progress and final pay-off. The music of Dear Boy, sung by Candide’s teacher, Dr. Pangloss, could pass for something that Sir Arthur Sullivan might have composed if he had lived in the 1950s, but the downand-dirty subject matter would have shocked him, his writing partner, W.S. Gilbert, and their conservative Victorian audiences. The auto-da-fé flogging in Lisbon offers the ironic counterpoint of a horrible event and jaunty
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music. Bernstein gave it a twentieth-century Latin lilt, turning the scene into a surreal, absurd lampoon. He characterized Paris with a rather pompous waltz, a dance which had not been born when the plot of Candide takes place – but then this isn’t a documentary. It’s the first of several numbers that Bernstein cast in historical dance forms. Later come another waltz (What’s the Use?), a polka (We Are Women) a barcarolle (performed in mid-Atlantic) and a gavotte (Venice). Bernstein doesn’t present any of them ‘straight,’ but gives each, like the auto-da-fé, dashes of twentieth-century spice. The Paris Waltz is followed by the score’s most familiar aria, Glitter and Be Gay.’This fizzing, demanding show-stopper is another satire of the bel canto era, especially its love of spectacular but empty-headed coloratura, music embellished with fast-moving, stratospheric ornamentation. Bernstein added displaced twentieth-century rhythms and frequent changes of metre. The action shifts to Cádiz, Spain. The woman known simply as ‘the old lady,’ the hilariously
eccentric companion of Candide’s ladylove, Cunegonde, sings I Am Easily Assimilated. It’s a spirited and saucy number in tango rhythm, yet another flavour that Bernstein added to the heady brew that is Candide. The trio called Quiet bears echoes of melancholy Russian Romantic music – think Tchaikovsky working on Broadway. The Ballad of El Dorado – satirically sweet and paradisical, really too good to be true – is a satire of what Voltaire considered the mindless idea of Utopia, and of mindlessly optimistic music, complete with chorus. Is it to be taken seriously or not? In the final scenes, all traces of satire disappear and the music adopts a grownup, lyrical beauty. Candide’s Nothing More Than This is his great and tender ‘realization’ aria, for which Bernstein provided the lyrics as well as the music. Candide finally understands that his beliefs have all been wrong-headed. A lovely, hushed and heartening chorus, Universal Good follows, then the finale, Make Our Garden Grow. It builds from a quiet opening solo, through a duet, to a radiant conclusion performed by the full company. ■ Program Notes © 2015 Don Anderson
Concert Program T EA & T R U M P ET S OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 2 P M
Thursday, June 11
Bramwell Tovey conductor Christopher Gaze host/narrator EnChor CHABRIER Gwendoline: Prelude to Act II BIZET Suite No. 2 from L’Arléssiene MASSENET Thais: Meditation FAURÉ Pavane FAURÉ Requiem
IV. Pie Jesu VII. In Paradisum
Orpheus in the Underworld: Overture
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Bramwell Tovey conductor For a biography of Maestro Tovey please refer to page 11.
Gold Medallion from the Children’s Theatre Foundation of America (2007), the Mayor’s Arts Award for Theatre (2011) and the Order of British Columbia (2012).
host & narrator
Born and educated in England, Christopher Gaze was inspired to come to Canada in 1975 by his mentor, legendary Shakespearean actor Douglas Campbell. He spent three seasons at the Shaw Festival in Niagara-onthe-Lake then moved to Vancouver in 1983. After a couple of experiences with other outdoor Shakespeare events, Christopher recognized the potential in blending excellent Shakespeare productions with Vancouver’s spectacular location. In 1990 he founded Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival where Bard’s signature open-ended performance tent allowed the actors to perform against a backdrop of the city’s skyline and mountains. A gifted public speaker, Christopher frequently shares his insights on the theatre and Shakespeare out in the community with school groups, service organizations and local businesses. Christopher’s many honours include induction into the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame, Canada’s Meritorious Service Medal (2004), Honorary Doctorates from UBC & SFU, the BC Community Achievement Award (2007), the
EnChor is an auditioned SATB choir based in Vancouver, Canada. The choir is the creation of the late Dr. Diane Loomer, who felt there was a largely untapped well of experienced singers who had reached their 55th birthday (or better) and still might be interested in performing high quality music. Since its founding in 2007, EnChor, together with members of the UBC Opera Ensemble, has been a feature of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s annual “Traditional Christmas” concert series. EnChor has also performed by invitation at Podium 2010 in Saskatoon and, Festival 500 in St. John’s Newfoundland in 2011 and will be the Host Choir for the BC Choral Federation’s Chorfest in May 2014. EnChor’s new Artistic Director, Carrie Tennant, is well known in the Canadian choral community for her creative approach to working with choirs. Currently, in addition to EnChor, Carrie is the founder and Artistic Director of the Vancouver Youth Choir, and the Associate Artistic Director of Coastal Sound Music Academy, where she directs their award winning 70-voice youth choir. ■ allegro 69
Concert Program A IR C A N A D A M A S T ERW OR K S D IAMO N D OR P H EU M T H EATR E , 8 P M
Saturday & Monday, June 13 & 15 Bramwell Tovey conductor Lucy Wang violin
(VSO School of Music Competition winner)
SIBELIUS The Bard, Op. 64 RAVEL Tzigane, rapsodie de concert INTERMISSION
MAHLER Symphony No. 5 in C-sharp minor
BRAMWELL TOVEY WITH THE VSO
Part One Trauermarsch: In gemessenem Schritt. Streng. Wie ein Kondukt Stürmisch bewegt. Mit grösster Vehemenz
Part Two Scherzo: Kräftig, nicht zu schnell
Part Three Adagietto: Sehr langsam Rondo-Finale: Allegro
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Lucy Wang violin Eighteen-year-old Lucy Wang began her violin studies at the age of three and, for the past several years, has studied with Carla Birston, at the VSO School of Music, and Gerald Stanick. Lucy has been a prizewinner in numerous national competitions, including the Canadian Music Competition, the Shean Competition, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra Competition, and the Seattle Young Artists Competition, where she was awarded the opportunity to perform Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto with the Philharmonia Northwest. Lucy gained valuable experience, as concertmaster and soloist, with the Semiahmoo Strings Youth Orchestra, before making her debut with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Bramwell Tovey in 2014. The grand prize she received as winner of the VSO School of Music Concerto Competition includes the opportunity to perform as soloist in the VSO’s season finale, in June, 2015. Lucy is currently attending the Colburn School in Los Angeles, under the tutelage of acclaimed violinist Martin Beaver.
Jean Sibelius b. Hämeenlinna, Finland / December 8, 1865 d. Järvenpää, Finland / September 20, 1957
The Bard, Op. 64 Sibelius composed this delicately scored miniature tone poem in 1913, two years after the emotionally bleak Symphony No. 4. It depicts the ancient bards, performers who travelled throughout Scandinavia, reciting the mythical sagas of olden days while accompanying themselves on the harp. The first section is serene and contemplative. Towards the end, the music shifts briefly to a more intense mode of expression, before Sibelius re-established the opening atmosphere of wistful regret.
Maurice Ravel b. Ciboure, France / March 7, 1875 d. Paris, France / December 28, 1937
Tzigane, rapsodie de concert In 1922, Ravel heard Hungarian violinist Jelly D’Aranyi in recital. After the concert, 72 allegro
she played gypsy melodies at his request. Intrigued, he decided to pay homage both to her and her music in this fiery composition, Tzigane (the French word for a female gypsy). She gave the premiere of the original, violinand-piano version in London during April 1924. Ravel created the even more colourful arrangement with orchestral accompaniment over the following summer. It opens with a long, elaborate unaccompanied violin solo. The orchestra then enters quietly, ushering in a dashing, kaleidoscopic segment overflowing with virtuoso fireworks.
Gustav Mahler b. Kalischt, Bohemia / July 7, 1860 d. Vienna, Austria / May 18, 1911
Symphony No. 5 in C-sharp minor During Mahler’s lifetime he was better known, and more widely esteemed, as a conductor than as a composer. After his death his reputation lay dormant until the 1960s, when his vibrant music began striking a deep chord with audiences. “A symphony should be like the world,” told Jean Sibelius in 1907, “it must contain everything.” Each of Mahler’s major compositions, in its own way, seeks to express a world’s worth of emotion and experience. The same symphony, or even the same movement of a symphony, may contain any or all of the following: heroism and tragedy, nobility and satire, simplicity and sophistication, despair and contentment. Massive blocks of orchestral sound dissolve into passages scored with the delicacy of chamber music (and vice-versa). Raucous marching bands and whirling, stamping country dancers rub shoulders with angelic, heavenly choirs. Such is the unique soundworld of Gustav Mahler. In February 1901, he suffered hemorrhaging so massive that it threatened his life. His strong constitution ensured that he made a full recovery, but friends noted that his brush with death had left him with a more subdued and sombre outlook. Reflecting this frame of mind, much of the music he wrote that summer – several songs (include portions of the cycle Songs on the Death of Children) and the first two movements of the Fifth Symphony – is filled with bleakness and despair.
On the other hand, he also created the symphony’s third movement, a swirling, buoyant scherzo. Perhaps he considered it a “thank you” for his recovery, and a reaffirmation of his enduring (if diminished) faith in the positive side of life. This is how he described it in a letter to a friend: “Each note is full of vitality and everything in it revolves as though in a whirlwind or the tail of a comet. Neither romantic nor mystical elements belong in it, it’s merely the expression of unparalleled power, that of a man in the full light of day who has reached the climax of his life.” The following year brought a further positive development: Mahler married Alma Schindler, an intelligent, spirited, attractive and musically talented young woman. His happiness is mirrored in the major creations of that summer, the final two movements of the Fifth. After rehearsing it with the Vienna Philharmonic in September 1904, he made the first of several revisions to the orchestration. The premiere followed on October 18, in Cologne, under his own baton. The reaction of critics and listeners alike proved largely unfavorable. In the emotional arc it traces from darkness to light, it mirrors the Fifth Symphony of Beethoven. The expansion in timescale, emotional extremity and orchestral apparatus reflects a century’s worth of societal and artistic change. Mahler divided the work
into three strongly contrasted parts. As musicologist Deryck Cooke has written, “The symphony might almost be described as schizophrenic, in that the most tragic and joyful worlds of feeling are separated off from one another, and only bound together by Mahler’s unmistakable command of large-scale symphonic construction and unification.” Part One consists of the two opening, thematically linked movements. The first is a sombre funeral march; the second a ferocious outburst of emotion, bordering at times on the hysterical. All this gloom evaporates magically with the horn call that opens Part Two, the scherzo. The broadest of all Mahler’s lighter movements, it celebrates, through the eyes of a mature, sophisticated man, the innocence and the lilting folk dances of his centralEuropean youth. Part Three (which mirrors Part One’s slowfast structure, but not its emotional contents) opens with a lyrical adagietto, lushly and eloquently scored for strings and harp (Mahler may have conceived it as a musical loveletter to his new bride; director Luchino Visconti made telling use of it in his 1971 film Death in Venice). It builds to a fervent climax, after which the exuberant rondofinale follows on without a pause. This section builds up considerable momentum and creates an evermore triumphant atmosphere as it unfolds. It also displays Mahler’s formidable skill at counterpoint. ■ Program Notes © 2015 Don Anderson
Vancouver Symphony Partners The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra gratefully acknowledges the generosity of the following Government Agencies, Corporations and Foundations that have made a financial contribution through sponsorship, charitable donation or participation in a Special Event.
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At the Concert CONCERT COURTESIES
CELL PHONES, PAGERS, DIGITAL WATCHES
CAMERAS, RECORDING EQUIPMENT
For your enjoyment, and the enjoyment of others, please remember concert etiquette. Talking, coughing, leaning over the balcony railings, unwrapping candies, and the wearing of strong perfume may disturb the performers as well as other audience members. Ushers will escort latecomers into the auditorium at a suitable break in the performance chosen by the conductor. Patrons who leave the auditorium during the performance will not be re-admitted until a suitable break in the performance.
Hearing-impaired patrons may borrow complimentary Sennheiser Infrared Hearing System headsets, available at the coat-check in the Orpheum Theatre only, after leaving a driverâ€™s licence or credit card.
Please turn off cell phones and ensure that digital watches do not sound during performances. Doctors and other professionals expecting calls are asked to please leave personal pagers, telephones and seat locations at the coat check.
Photography and video/audio recording of any kind are prohibited during the performance. Pictures taken pre-concert, at intermission, and post-concert are encouraged. Please feel free to tweet and post to Facebook or Instagram pre-concert, during intermission or after the concert. During the performance, please do not use your mobile device in any way.
SMOKING AND SCENTS All venues are
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PROGRAM, GUEST ARTISTS AND/OR PROGRAM ORDER ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE.
Vancouver Symphony Administration 604.684.9100 Finance & Administration: Mary-Ann Moir, Vice-President, Finance & Administration Antonio Andreescu, Junior Database & Network Administrator Debra Marcus, Director, Information Technology & Human Resources Ann Surachatchaikul, Accountant Ray Wang, Payroll Clerk & IT Assistant Marketing, Sales & Customer Service: Alan Gove, Acting President & CEO; Vice-President, Marketing & Sales; Shirley Bidewell, Manager, Gift Shop & Volunteers
Estelle and Michael Jacobson Chair
Stephanie Fung, Interim Director of Marketing Anna Gove, Editor & Publisher, Allegro Magazine Katherine Houang, Group Sales & Special Ticket Services Kenneth Livingstone, Database Manager Caroline MĂĄrkos, PR Associate & Assistant to the Music Director Robert Rose, Front of House Coordinator Cameron Rowe, Director, Audience & Ticket Services Laura-Anne Scherer, Social Media Victoria Sie, Marketing Assistant & Assistant to the President & CEO
The Vancouver Symphony Society is grateful to the Alan and Gwendoline Pyatt Foundation for generously providing our Administrative Offices.
Customer Service Representatives: Jason Ho, Senior Customer Service Representative Anthony Soon Odessa Cadieux-Rey Jonah McGarva Michael McNair Kathy Siu Acacia Cresswell Jessica Tung Paycia Khamvongsa Stacey Menzies Xavier de Salaberry Karl Ventura Shawn Lau Jade McDonald Kim Smith Development: Leanne Davis, Vice-President, Chief Development Officer Ryan Butt, Manager, Corporate Programs Mary Butterfield, Director, Individual & Legacy Giving Chris Loh, Development Coordinator Kate Lucas, Director, Annual Giving Dawn Nash, Stewardship Officer Ann True, Development Officer, Direct Response Lauren Watson, Development Officer, Special Projects Deanna Cheng, Special Projects Assistant Artistic Operations & Education: Joanne Harada, Vice-President, Artistic Operations & Education Matthew Baird, Artistic Operations Assistant Sarah Boonstra, Operations Manager Rheanna Buursma, Assistant Librarian and Artistic Operations Assistant DeAnne Eisch, Orchestra Personnel Manager Ryan Kett, Artistic Operations & Education Assistant Minella F. Lacson, Music Librarian Christin Reardon MacLellan, Education & Community Programmes Manager
Ken & Patricia Shields Chair
Vancouver Symphony Society Board of Directors Debra Finlay
Chief Development Officer (Ret.) Ernst & Young
Larry Berg, Vice Chair
Michael L. Fish
Board Executive Committee
Partner, McCarthy Tetrault LLP
Fred Withers, Chair
Partner, Blakes Director, The Molnar Group
President & CEO (Ret.) Vancouver International Airport Authority
Etienne Bruson, Treasurer
Partner, International Tax, Deloitte
Dave Cunningham, Secretary VP Government Relations, TELUS
Partner, Chair of the National Mining Group Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
President, Pacific Surgical
Senior Vice President, Marketing & Sales and Managing Broker Intracorp Realty LTD.
Hein Poulus, Q.C.
Senior Vice President, Buildings, Stantec
Partner, Stikeman Elliot
Executive Vice-President and CFO Goldcorp Inc.
Dr. Peter Chung
Executive Chairman, PrimaCorp Ventures Inc.
Chairman, President and CEO (Ret.) Sandwell International Inc.
Musician Representatives Larry Knopp Principal Trumpet
Executive Director (Ret.), South Surrey & White Rock Chamber of Commerce
Elizabeth VolpĂŠ Bligh Harp
Honorary Life President
Director, Century Group Lands Corporation
Ronald Laird Cliff, C.M.
Honorary Life Vice-Presidents
Partner, International Tax Services Ernst & Young LLP
Nezhat Khosrowshahi Gerald A.B. McGavin, C.M., O.B.C. Ronald N. Stern Arthur H. Willms
Managing Director, Global Mining Group CIBC World Markets
Philip KY Chan
General Sales Manager, Mercedes-Benz Canada
Vancouver Symphony Foundation Board of Trustees Ronald Laird Cliff, C.M., Chair Marnie Carter Richard Mew
Irene McEwen Gerald A.B. McGavin, C.M., O.B.C. Hein Poulus, Q.C.
Alan Pyatt Arthur H. Willms
Fred Withers Tim Wyman
VSO School of Music Society Board of Directors
Gordon R. Johnson, Chair Fiona Lin Hein Poulus, Q.C.
Patricia Shields Eric Watt Arthur H. Willms
Curtis Pendleton Executive Director
Operations & Facilities Manager
Louise Ironside Assistant Director
Vancouver Symphony Volunteer Council 2014/2015 Chair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Secretary . . . . . . . . . . . . Treasurer . . . . . . . . . . . . Member . . . . . . . . . . . . . Member . . . . . . . . . . . . . Immediate Past Chair . . .
Nancy Wu Marlies Wagner Gail Franko Paddy Aiken Azmina Manji Sheila Foley
Scheduling Concerts (all venues) . . . Shirley Bidewell Gift Shop . . . . . . . . . . . . Barbara Morris Lotteries in Malls . . . . . . Gloria Davies
Reception Shifts . . . . . . . . Gloria Davies Tea & Trumpets . . . . . . . . . Shirley Featherstone Marlene Strain Special Events Symphony of Style 2014 . . Paddy Aiken Holland America On-Board Luncheon 2014 . Marlies Wagner
Membership Volunteer Hours . . . . . . . . Sheila Foley
Manager, Gift Shop and Volunteer Resources Shirley Bidewell Tel 604.684.9100 ext 240 firstname.lastname@example.org Assistant Gift Shop Manager Robert Rose
VSO SUMMER CONCERTS WHISTLER PRESENTS A SUMMER OF ENTERTAINMENT FEATURING THE VSO WEDNESDAY, JULY 1, 3PM, WHISTLER OLYMPIC PLAZA FRIDAY, JULY 3, 8PM, WHISTLER OLYMPIC PLAZA SATURDAY, JULY 4, 8PM, WHISTLER OLYMPIC PLAZA Whistler presents three FREE outdoor concerts, each featuring unique repertoire, and the full Vancouver Symphony Orchestra conducted by Bramwell Tovey! Book your Whistler accommodations at: BRAMWELL TOVEY
whistler.com/entertainment | 1.800.WHISTLER
SYMPHONY IN THE PARK
DEER LAKE PARK
SUNDAY, JULY 12, 7PM, DEER LAKE PARK, BURNABY Gordon Gerrard conductor Bring your picnic blanket to the VSO’s annual FREE concert at Deer Lake Park in Burnaby! One of Metro Vancouver’s most beautiful outdoor venues.
THE VSO AT BARD ON THE BEACH
CLASSICAL MASTERPIECES MONDAY, JULY 13, 7:30PM, BMO MAINSTAGE, BARD ON THE BEACH The VSO and Associate Conductor Gordon Gerrard present a concert of Classical-era musical masterpieces, including Mozart’s brilliant Symphony No. 40.
A BAROQUE JOURNEY MONDAY, JULY 20, 7:30PM, BMO MAINSTAGE, BARD ON THE BEACH Join the VSO and Associate Conductor Gordon Gerrard on a journey through the beautiful music of the Baroque era, including selections from Bach’s famous Brandenburg Concertos, and music by Handel and Vivaldi. Tickets from only $26! GORDON GERRARD
Bardonthebeach.org | 604.739.0559
PRINCETON ENTERTAINMENT PRESENTS
POKÉMON: SYMPHONIC EVOLUTIONS WEDNESDAY, JULY 22, 7:30PM, ORPHEUM THEATRE Susie Benchasil Seiter conductor The VSO presents Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions, performed live by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. This is the must-see video game concert of the year, giving fans and newcomers of all ages a chance to experience the evolution of the Pokémon franchise like never before. “It’s something purely magical that you just need to experience firsthand.” –Hardcore Gamer PIKACHU
Tickets: vancouversymphony.ca | 604.876.3434
Full concert listings at
vancouversymphony.ca or call 604.876.3434