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

2008-09 Season

Saturday, Nov. 8th, 2008
~ 7:00 p.m. ~
Memorial Auditorium

Concert poster
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Concert Graphic

November 8th, 2008
Class LTD Fundraiser Concert

The Southeast Kansas Symphony is pleased to be the opening program of the Class LTD evening fundraiser dinner. Held at Memorial Auditorium, this 25 minute concert will be of the Nutcracker Suite on the Memorial Auditorium stage for an audience of between 200-300 people from the surrounding area.

Two graduate conducting students will be featured guest conductors for this performance. Stella Hastings will also conduct and provide some brief narration.

Ballet suite from "The Nutcracker" Op. 71a

Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893)

I Ouverture miniature - Miniature overture
II Danses Charactéristiques
a) Marche - March
b) Danse de la Fée-Dragée - Dance of the sugar plum fairy
c) Danse russe Trepak - Russian dance
d) Danse Arabe - Arabian dance
e) Danse Chinoise - Chinese dance
f) Danse des Mirlitons - The dance of the Mirlitons
III Valse des Fleurs - Waltz of the flowers

Last SEKSO Performance: Nov. 17th, 2002
Completed In: 1892
First Performed: May 7, 1892. St. Petersburg

Adapted from a tale by E.T.A. Hoffman, the Nutcracker tells the story of two children, Fritz and Clara, given a variety of presents including a Nutcracker in the shape of a man. That evening, after everyone else has retired, Clara comes downstairs and discovers the Nutcracker and the other toys have come to life. Her youthful imagination conjures a battle between them and an army of mice, and she saves the Nutcracker as he is about to be defeated by the King of the Mice. The Nutcracker promptly turns into a handsome prince and sweeps Clara off of her feet with a trip to his kingdom as a reward. With a girls fairytale fantasies like that captured by the musical ability of one of the greatest composers of the Romantic period, this piece was going to catch on.

How it became such a success, though, is perhaps a tale in itself. Commissioned by the Mariinsky Theatre of St. Petersburg as a follow-up to "Sleeping Beauty", Tchaikovsky was not pleased with the subject of the ballet, one that was made for him; the Alexandre Dumas adaptation of the Hoffman tale "The Nutcracker and the Mouse King". He also received a 'slight bit' of coaching from the choreographer Marius Petipa, who tried to dictate how many measures of 'sweet music' or 'joyous music' he was to write.

He did, however, manage to sketch out the first act by March of 1891, before traveling to America where he appeared as a conductor in the inaugural concert of Carnegie Hall that May. A benefit of the trip was found during a stop in Paris: a new instrument called the 'Celesta Mustel'. He bought one on the spot and had his publishers bring it secretly to St. Petersburg, afraid that Rimsky-Korsakov or Glazunov would hear of it and use it before him. It would be very difficult indeed to picture this piece scored using anything else.

The ballet was not received very well and was very slow in finding any kind of foothold in the repertoire. It was not performed in America until October 1940, a one-act version performed in New York and the full ballet in San Francisco in 1944. The suite became popular about the same time, through an unusual venue, Walt Disney's animated classic "Fantasia".

Scored for: 2 flute, piccolo, 2 clarinet, english horn, 2 bassoon, 4 horn, 2 trumpet, 3 trombone, tuba, timpani, percussion, harp, celeste, strings.
[ 3[1.2.3/pic] 3[1.2.Eh] 3[1.2.bcl] 2 - 4231 - tmp+1 - hp - cel - str

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Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893)