skip to page title

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

2004-05 Season

Sunday, November 21st, 2004
~ 3:00 p.m. ~
Memorial Auditorium

Concert program (PDF)
Concert poster
Related Links

'Overheard In the Lobby'

... "I would be so very proud to have a son or daughter involved in an organization like this. The amount of dedication it takes and the experiences they get from participating are things that you just don't find anywhere else"...

Concert Graphic

"Melodies We Love"
November 21st, 2004
Program Notes

Overture to "La Gazza Ladra"

Gioacchino Antonio Rossini (1792-1868)

Maestoso marciale - Allegro

Last SEKSO Performance: February 11th, 2001
Written In: 1817
First Performed: May 13, 1817, La Scala opera house, Milan

The overture to "La Gazza Ladra" (aka "The Thieving Magpie", aka "Die diebische Elster") is one of Rossini's most familiar and popularly performed opera overtures, however the opera itself is rarely performed. Rossini's popularity perhaps lies in more comic adventures, like the "Barber of Seville" and although this piece may sound light and comical, it is based on a very real and very serious event. Ninetta, a servant girl is accused of stealing a silver spoon. Because of complicating circumstances (and what opera is without them?) she does not protest her innocence. Ultimately, and just in time, it is learned that a pet magpie is the real culprit, making off with the object to use in it's nest.

In reality, the spoon was not found in time, the French girl was executed before the real thief was located, and the event started a European-wide contempt for the practice of the death penalty in regards to theft.

Scored for: flute, piccolo, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, 1 trombone, percussion, timpani, and strings. [ 2[1/pic.2]222-2210-tmp+1-str]

Canon, from Canon and gigue, for 3 violins & continuo in D major, T. 337 ("Pachelbel's Canon")

Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706)

Written In: c. 1680
German Title: Kanon und Gigue in D-Dur für drei Violinen und Basso Continuo

PPachelbel was a widely known and prolific composer in his day, a key player in the development of Protestant church music and keyboard music in general, influencing such composers as, oh... Johann Sebastian Bach, for instance. This piece however, is just about his only work generally performed in today's concert halls and has been arranged for almost every ensemble in existence, making it's way into jazz and modern music.

The repetitive bass part (almost on par with Ravel's "Bolero", without the climax) sets the framework for the three violin sections, performing almost 30 variations in canon. In its day, it would have been performed at a fairly upbeat tempo, but through the centuries, a slower, sedate tempo is common and can be quite beautifully handled.

Scored for: strings.

Clair de Lune (Moonlight) extrait de la Suite Bergamasque L. 75/3

Claude-Achille Debussy (1862-1918)

Completed In: 1903
Named After: a poem by Paul Verlaine

Claude Debussy was one of the most influential composers of the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and a founder of impressionism. Beginning his studies at the Paris Conservatory in the 1870's, Debussy was spurred on by the interest of Tchaikovsky's patroness Nadezhda von Meck, and her assistance introduced him to the composers Borodin and Mussorgsky.

Clair de Lune is the third of four pieces that make up the Suite Bergamasque, written for piano in 1888. Its 'moonlight' impressions are one of romance itself, and you may find yourself thinking of several movie scenes from the Thirties and Forties, a genre that was influenced by the music of Debussy and a number of other orchestral composers.

Scored for: 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2/4 horns, harp, celeste, and strings. [2222-4000-hp-cel-str]

Der Ritt Der Walküren ("Ride of the Walkyries" ) from Die Walküre, WWV 86b

Richard Wagner (1813-1883)

Opera First Performed: Munich's National Theatre on 26 June 1870

Among names thought of as the pillars of classical music, Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, you must also list Wagner, his influence on musical development is inarguable. His string of operas written in the 1850's and 60's - Das Rheingold, Die Walküre, Siegfried, and Götterdämmerung, known collectively as the "Ring Cycle" were pinnacle examples of his writing prowess, not only of notes, but of text. Act three of Die Walkure opens with this piece, as Wotan's daughters assemble on a mountaintop after looking for dead warriors after a battle. According to Scandinavian myth, the Walkyries were goddesses that carried slain warriors from the battlefield to Valhalla. Not heard in the concert version are the eight vocal parts of the Walkyries, included to complete the musical impact on the listener.

Wagner's music has been very popular with militaristic-minded folk. Adolph Hitler, used it to spur his people to either victory or submission. "Apocalypse Now" director Francis Ford Coppola used this piece specifically for dramatic and perhaps ironic effect, the mechanical Walkyrie, or helicopters, flying over what would quickly become a battlefield.

Scored for: 4 flutes, 2 piccolo, 4 oboes, English horn, 4 clarinets, bass clarinet, 3 bassoons, 8 horns, 3 trumpets, 4 trombones, tuba, percussion, timpani, and strings.
[4[1.2.pic1.pic2] 4[1.2.3.Eh] 4[1.2.3.bcl] 3-8341-2tmp+3-str]

Serenade No. 13 for strings in G major ("Eine kleine Nachtmusik"), K. 525

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

I. Allegro
II. Romanza: Andante
III. Menuetto: Allegretto
IV. Rondo: Allegro

Written In: 1787

Eine kleine Nachtmusik, or "A little night music" is a piece that is probably on everyone's "top-ten list" of Mozart compositions; its melodies are easily recognizable. Mozart wrote a number of serenades and "nachtmusik" was a common designation for them. This work was written in 1787 in Vienna, and it differs from a number of his other Salzburg compositions in the scoring - this piece was written for two violins, viola, cello and double bass. It is much more common, though, to hear a performance for a small chamber orchestra.

Originally written in five movements, the second movement, a minuet, was taken out for some reason. One can assume that the themes were used in another work, but no one has been able to pinpoint an extant copy of the original version. Of the remaining movements, the first is in a sonata form, the third in a ternary form (ABA form), and the last movement a rondo.

Scored for: strings.

An der schönen, blauen Donau (On the Beautiful Blue Danube), Op. 314

Johann Strauss Jr. (1825-1899)

Last SEKSO Performance: April 9th, 1995
Written In: 1867
Written For: the Vienna Men's Singing Society

The Blue Danube is the favored waltz of millions. Johann Strauss, known as "The Waltz King", was the driving force behind the popularity of the waltz in Vienna at the time, and the Blue Danube was his "Stars and Stripes Forever" composition. Popularly known for this style of composition, Strauss was a well-respected composer, writing numerous other compositions such as the opera Die Fledermaus. He widely toured Europe and even came to the United States in 1872.

In it's original version, the Blue Danube called for a four-part choir and orchestra, but was also performed in its 'popular' version a few months later. A slow introduction seems to tease the audience, waiting on the familiar tunes and excitement. Throughout the piece there are a number of 'stutters' that keep you on your toes, so to speak. The work is comprised of a number of variations, or mini-waltzes, each in two parts. Variations of the first waltz return for an enthusiastic climax.

Scored for: 2 flutes, piccolo, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 1 trombones, tuba, harp, percussion, timpani, and strings. [2[1.2/pic]222-4211-tmp+2-hp-str]

Related Links

Claude-Achille Debussy (1862-1918)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706)

Gioacchino Antonio Rossini (1792-1868)

Johann Strauss Jr. (1825-1899)

Richard Wagner (1813-1883)