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The Southeast Kansas Symphony Orchestra
Raul Munguia - Artistic Director & Conductor

2004-05 Season

Sunday, October 3rd, 2004
~ 3:00 p.m. ~
Memorial Auditorium

Concert program (PDF)
Concert poster
Related Links

Concert Graphic

October 3rd, 2004
Program Notes

Fanfare for the Common Man

Aaron Copland (1900-1990)

Last SEKSO Performance: October 1st, 2000
Completed/Written In: 1942
First Performed: March 12, 1943. Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, cond. Eugene Goossens
Dedicated To: WWII military personnel

In 1942, Eugene Goossens asked almost 20 composers, predominantly American, to write a patriotic fanfare to be used to open a number of concerts in the Cincinnati Symphony's 1942-43 concert season. He requested a fanfare for brass and percussion with a stirring patriotic title, to be written in honor the World War II military personnel serving the country. During the First World War, he had a similar request for several British composers and it was suggested he do the same in America. Of that number, 12 responded with compositions meeting most of his requirements.

Along with the names Howard Hanson, Virgil Thomson, Walter Piston and Morton Gould, the name Aaron Copland was included. Copland settled on the title "Fanfare for the Common Man", perhaps a bit more understated than Goossens wanted, however Copland understood it to be the common man who responded when our nation was in danger. Goossens hoped that Copland's piece would be ready for the first concert in October, but Copland didn't deliver until November, and it was decided to delay the premier until mid-March of the next year. You see it wasn't until after the War that the date of April 15th was selected for an income tax deadline, and Goossens thought perhaps if he was unable to honor the fighter, he could instead honor the financier.

The Fanfare, as with most of Copland's works, has become a popular staple in the Symphonic repertoire. It has been performed in a variety of arrangements, such as for the U.S. Air Force Band and even by the rock group Emerson, Lake and Palmer. Copland later used the themes in the opening of the final movement of his Third Symphony.

Scored for: 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, percussion, and timpani [0000-4331-tmp+2]

Overture to The Magic Flute (Die Zauberflöte), K.620

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

Adagio - Allegro

Completed In: 1791
First Performed: September 30, 1791 at Schikaneder's Theater auf der Wieden in Vienna.

Two months before Mozart's death, he completed two operas, Die Zauberflöte ("The Magic Flute") and La clemenza di Tito ("The Clemency of Titus") leaving his final work, the Requiem undone at his death in December 1791.

The Magic Flute is a fairy tale presented in singspiel, or "sung play", a German language form with spoken dialogue and song, which was very popular in Vienna at the time. Although these were usually light comic affairs (and there are certainly elements of that present), there was a bit more depth to this opera. As is often the case with a fairy tale, there is more to it than what is on the surface. Mozart prominently used the trombones, more often saved for the most solemn of operatic passages and church music and the writing in general is a bit more involved than contemporary works of the type.

The Magic Flute is often referred to as his "Masonic opera", the libretto heavy with symbolism taken from the rituals and ideas of the Freemasons. Mozart joined the Masons some seven years prior to his death, and it's philosophy somewhat shaped a number of works from his pen. The number three plays a heavy part in the overture, opening with a representation of the three knocks of Masonic ritual. Three stately chords in E-flat Major, or three flats, the primary key of the overture. The overall theme of the opera is the passage through trials from spiritual darkness into light.

The tone stays somber for just a moment before the strings begin a light, scurried theme. One of Mozart's favored techniques in his later years was fugal counterpoint, used in this case to present not a comic effect, but one of importance or intensity. The second theme is passed throughout the woodwinds in a more subdued fashion. Suddenly, the composer returns to the three-chord theme, but expands it a bit before continuing on to the end.

The Southeast Kansas Symphony Orchestra will join Joplin's "Heartland Opera Theater" for a performance of the entire opera on April 23rd and 24th, 2005 at the Taylor Auditorium on the Missouri Southern State University Campus.

Scored for: 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, timpani, and strings. [2222-2230-tmp-str]

Ballade for Trombone (or Tenor Saxophone) & Orchestra

Frank Martin (1890-1974)

Andante - Allegro guisto - Vivace assai

Written In: 1940 for soloist and piano
First Performed: 1940
Arranged for orchestra: 1940 with the assistance of Ernest Ansermet

Swiss composer Frank Martin began composing at the ripe age of eight years, and during his rather quiet career established himself as a respected composer. When young, he was very moved by a performance of Bach's St. Matthew Passion and by 16, while pleasing his parents with formal studies in mathematics and physics, concentrated his own time in music under the Swiss composer Joseph Lauber. Other influential composers in Martin's life at that time were Schumann and Chopin.

In 1918, Martin moved to Zurich, and then traveled to Rome and Paris. He returned to Geneva eight years later influenced by the composers Debussy and Ravel, and with a newly acquired taste in jazz. Jazz played a significant role in the introduction of the trombone in ensemble work after World War One and in influencing the instrument's path into orchestral music in the twenties and thirties. Solo brass and woodwind instrument writing in early twentieth century France was left to the music conservatory and it was common that the pieces were commissioned. With this in the European mix, enter Frank Martin, asked to write a piece for the 1940 "Concours d'execution Musicale" the Geneva International Music Competition. The Competition was instituted to promote contemporary Swiss music and it did so by commissioning music from Swiss composers. This was the second year of the Competition and the trombone was being given a place as a competition instrument.

Martin used the jazz trombone influence to bridge the gap into the modern orchestra, and demonstrated how the instrument could be used very effectively in a solo role of symphonic music. The piece was used as an inspiration of sorts for other composers writing for the instrument, some on the behest of inspired trombonists of the day who were ready to do more than count rests.

The piece begins with a lonely and searching trombone entrance, perhaps a bit descriptive of its earlier traditional role in the symphony. The strings enter with a cloudy foundation for its quest. As the piece progresses, the soloist and orchestra find a common ground and begin to develop a cooperative direction. That direction leads to a jazz influenced middle section, heavily syncopated. The piece ends with an expected race to the finish, with strongly rhythmic work for all involved.

Scored for: piano, percussion, timpani, and strings. [tmp+1-pf-str]

Robert Kehle, trombone

Robert Kehle, trombone

Mr. Kehle joined the Pittsburg State University faculty in 1978 and holds the rank of University Professor of Music where he teaches trombone and is the director of the PSU Jazz Studies program.

Mr. Kehle completed his undergraduate studies at Washington State University with both the Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Arts (music education) degrees and completed the Master of Music degree and doctoral course work at Indiana University. His trombone teachers include former members of the Chicago, Pittsburgh, PA., and Philadelphia Symphonies. His jazz studies were with Dominic Spera and David Baker. He has performed with the Spokane Symphony, at several International Trombone Festivals as a member of the Cramer Choir and the American Trombone Choir, the Indiana Brass Quintet, the Spokane Jazz Society, and back up for various touring artists/groups including Slide Hampton's World of Trombones, the Manhattan Transfer, and with Mr. Louie Bellson.

Mr. Kehle has been a featured soloist with numerous orchestras, bands, and jazz groups in the Midwest. He is also Principal Trombone in the Springfield, Missouri Symphony Orchestra, the Central Plains Brass Quintet, and is trombonist with the jazz group "Blues Over Easy." He has published articles in several professional journals and his book, "Alto Trombone Literature: An Annotated Guide" is now in its second edition and is published by Warwick Music, UK.

Mr. Kehle has given scholarly presentations at the Kansas Music Educator's In Service Workshop on Recruiting the Beginning Trombonist and Trombone Basics. He has also presented at the Kansas Bandmasters Association about the trombone and in 2008 presented at the International Trombone Festival in Salt Lake City. The topic was Alto Trombone Literature with emphasis on the Americas.

His memberships include Phi Mu Alpha, The International Trombone Association, The Kansas Music Educators Association, Music Educators National Conference, and The International Association for Jazz Education, American Federation of Musicians, and the National Educators Association. Mr. Kehle is an artist affiliate with C. G. Conn. He has also held the positions of President of the PSU Faculty Senate, President of PSU-KNEA, and President of the Kansas Unit of IAJE.

Robert Kehle Faculty page.

Symphony No.5 in C Minor, Op.67

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

I. Allegro con brio
II. Andante con moto Allegro
III. Allegro
IV. Allegro

Written In: 1804-1808
First Performed: December 22, 1808, Theater-an-der-Wien, Vienna
Dedicated To: F. J. von Lobkowitz and Graf (Count) A. von Rasumovsky

How many of us can boast of being at "the right place at the right time"? The Vienna concertgoers in 1808 could if they attended the premier performance of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. This massive four-hour concert premiered not only this, arguably the most famous symphony ever written, but also his Sixth Symphony, two movements from the Mass in C Major, the concert aria Ah, perfido, the Choral Fantasy, and the Fourth Piano Concerto with Beethoven making his final concert appearance as pianist. Was this "preimierapalooza" an odd twist of fate, a convergence of circumstance, a muse run amok? No, Beethoven's habit simply was to work on several pieces at the same time.

In spite of all of this soon-to-be-history, the concert was not very well received. The length of the concert, a very cold concert hall, and a one-day heads up for the orchestra did not add to a polished performance. About eighteen months later, E.T.A. Hoffmann would offer a very (perhaps a little 'too') eloquent review of another performance, a review written by a novelist, with the understanding of a composer.

The four movements are immediately connected by the famous four-note theme Beethoven described as "Fate knocking on the door". Its resemblance to the Morse code letter "V" prompted it's use as a rally piece for the Allies in World War Two, while at the same time, it's "German" origin made it an obvious choice for the Nazi war machine. Beethoven probably could have cared less; his war seemed to be one against the lengthy exposition of the standard classical symphony's sonata form. The theme keeps knocking throughout exposition and development. The recapitulation of the opening themes is lengthened this time by an impromptu oboe solo... wait for it... ok, now on with the recap and coda to finish the movement.

The second movement, Andante con moto opens with a beautiful and leisurely pastoral statement offered by the violas and cellos, then later by the full orchestra - quite refreshing after such impending Fate. This theme and variations does play on the four-note theme to a degree, but for the most part, the mood is very reflective and serene. There are instances of bravado, but all couched in the image of calm and control, even a touch of playfulness.

The Scherzo (Allegro) begins in a low and mysterious C minor line, but regains the intensity of the first movement punctuated with the horns over the full orchestra. The middle Trio bursts open with the cellos and basses and presents a playful C Major fugue and is repeated, as was common in other works at the time. Interlaced throughout this section is a subtle, almost baroque accompaniment by those not involved in the main theme. This fugue gets a bit distracted and plays out, to be replaced by the main Scherzo recapitulation, even more muted and mysterious. The third and fourth movements are connected by a long and tension filled bridge by the strings and timpani, leading to the opening of the triumphant C Major grand entrance.

Beethoven pulls out all of the stops in the Finale, the entrance is definite, forceful, and triumphant. The soaring second theme is played by the strings and woodwinds and is not as fanfarish as the first. The development takes these secondary themes and expounds on them to a great degree, much of which is over the foundation of C Major scales and arpeggios. After the return of the main theme, the extended coda brings in new material, as if to go directly to the expected "encore!" and not break the momentum. The piece finishes with a Presto that increases the pace to the end. Fate? Fate is not for the timid!

Scored for: 2 flutes, piccolo, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, contrabassoon 2 horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, timpani, and strings. [3[1.2.pic]223[]-2230-tmp-str]

Related Links

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)

Aaron Copland (1900-1990)


Frank Martin (1890-1974)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)


Trombone Links: