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

2009-10 Season

Sunday, April 18th, 2010
~ 3:00 p.m. ~
Danny and Willa Ellis
Family Fine Arts Center
2108 South Horton
Fort Scott, KS

Concert program (PDF)
Concert poster
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Concert Graphic

"So Romantic!"
April 18th, 2010
Program Notes

Rakastava, Op. 14 (The Lover)

Jean Sibelius (1865-1957)

I. The Lover
II. The Path of the Beloved
III. Good Evening...Farewell

Last SEKSO Performance: October 9, 2005
Arranged In: 1911 for string orchestra
Originally for: Unaccompanied male chorus (1894)

The first version of "Rakastava" Op.14, "The Lover", dates from 1893. Sibelius submitted this work as his entry to the competition held by the choir of the University of Helsinki for a work for men's choir, and won the second prize. He had just finished the tone poem "Kullervo" based on the Nordic epic "Kalevala". Sibelius turned anew to the Nordic mythology in "Rakastava", which contains three chants from the Finnish national epic "Kanteletar". Towards the end of the 19th century, Sibelius occupied himself intensely with the Nordic poems; they took on a primordial importance for his work and left their lasting mark on his compositions. He saw in the national traditions of the North the substance and source of inspiration for his work, and succeeded in transposing them into music with contemporary means.

For performance-practical reasons, Sibelius arranged the work for men's choir and string orchestra in 1894 and for mixed choir a cappella in 1898. Finally in 1911, he revised the composition and set it definitely for string orchestra, triangle and kettledrums. Whereas the first three versions were performed solely within the Finnish borders, the fourth version attained international significance.

The final version was brought to paper 17 years after the first transcription of the seminal idea, thus after a long maturative process. Contrary to the other versions with their various scorings, this arrangement is the only one to omit the text: the choir is no longer necessary; the work is scored only for instruments. The immediate and direct relation of the music to a certain extra-musical subject is replaced by a programme, which is expressed solely in the title and in the headings of the movements. Although this renders a concrete interpretation somewhat more difficult, it provides greater compositional freedom and allows the emotional and expressive possibilities to unfold with a greater suggestive power, suited ideally to the evocative theme "The Lover".

The original composition of "Rakastava" being considerably earlier than this last version, one is only indirectly aware of Sibelius's acquaintance with impressionistic music, which he made during the first two decades of the 20th century and which he integrated into his compositional style, thereby enriching it.

However, the omission of the text represents an essential alteration, which must be seen in relation to the development of Sibelius's style. The thematic substance of the Nordic mythology is spiritualized and no longer contained directly in the work. It is treated in a more subtle manner and interwoven sensitively into the compositional texture.

The first movement, "The Lover", which in a way suggests the mood of the work and discloses its emotional content, is based on a central theme and its free development. The second movement, "The Path of the Beloved", contrasts to the previous movement by its faster tempo and by a regular motion throughout, out of which emerge various thematic and melodic elements. Finally, the three-part form of the third movement, "Good Evening...Farewell", represents a synthesis of the slow, expressive character and the fast, agitated aspect. The work is closed by a Lento, in which motivic figures from the previous melodic material suddenly blaze forth.

-- Publisher's notes.

Scored for: strings.

Concerto for Solo Marimba (low A) and String Orchestra (or Wind Ensemble), Op. 12

Ney Rosauro (1952- )

I. Saudação (Greetings)
II. Lamento, (Lament)
III. Dança (Dance)
IV. Despedida (Farewell).

Completed/Written In: 1986
First Performed: Manitowoc Symphony Orchestra, dir. Manuel Prestamo
Dedicated to: Marcelo G. Rosauro

The Concerto for Marimba and Orchestra was written in June and July of 1986 in Brasília and is dedicated to the composer's son Marcelo. The work was originally written for marimba and string orchestra and was premiered in the USA the same year with the Manitowoc Symphony Orchestra in Wisconsin under the direction of Manuel Prestamo. The Wind Ensemble version is arranged by Dr. Thomas McCutchen.

With the commercial success of a 1990 CD and video by Scottish percussionist Evelyn Glennie and the London Symphony Orchestra, the Concerto rapidly came to be regarded as part of the standard literature for percussion. It is considered to be the most popular marimba concerto today, and has been performed by more than eight hundred orchestras worldwide.

The concerto contains four movements - unusual for the concerto form - which follow the fast-slow-fast pattern, with the medium tempo third movement inserted before the vigorous finale. Some Brazilian motifs and jazz elements are used throughout the piece, which contains strong rhythmic patterns and catchy melodies. The marimba leads the thematic material throughout much the piece, and as a result, the marimba part of certain movements can be performed solo, without orchestral accompaniment. The solo part explores the many possibilities of modern four-mallet technique, and according to reviews from Percussive Notes magazine "the concerto is superbly written for the unique timbre and virtuoso technical qualities of the marimba."

Ney Rosauro

Scored for: strings.


Salvador Prado, marimba

Salvador Prado, marimba

Salvador Prado is a senior music education major at Pittsburg State University. During his college career he has been involved in numerous university ensembles including wind ensemble, chamber winds, percussion ensemble, choir, the Southeast Kansas Symphony Orchestra, and has been a member of the Pride of the Plains Drum line for 4 seasons. He has been a member of APEX percussion club and has participated in numerous volunteer activities in the campus community, Pittsburg, and surrounding areas. Some of these activities include assisting local educators with percussion related topics, participating in drum circles, and performing in classes at Pittsburg State outside of the music department. In 2008, Salvador, along with other percussionists from PSU, performed at the Kansas Day of Percussion which took place in Pittsburg, Kansas. In 2009, he placed 2nd place at the Waddill Chamber Music Competition with this same ensemble. Salvador hails from Commerce, Oklahoma but currently lives in Pittsburg, Kansas with his wife Krystal.

Symphony No. 5 in E minor, Op. 64

Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893)

I Andante - Allegro con anima
II Andante cantabile, con alcuna licenza
III Valse: Allegro moderato
IV Andante maestoso - Allegro vivace

Written In: May-Aug. 1888
First Performed: St. Petersburg, Nov. 6, 1888, Tchaikovsky cond.

Tchaikovsky's fifth symphony was composed in the summer of 1888, and first performed in St. Petersburg in November of that year, the composer conducting. It went through a number of revisions before arriving at the version we are familiar with. The composer's viewpoint of his abilities went through as many revisions during that time; comments to friends and relatives ranged from 'I wish I had another lifetime to do all of the work that's in me', and 'well, this can't be any worse than some of my other compositions', to 'I'm all washed up, my head is empty, and I may as well hang it up'. Maybe that's why his works are so dramatic - they are usually filled to capacity with human drama.

The fifth symphony is a cyclical symphony, with a recurring main theme showing up in all four movements, something Tchaikovsky used successfully a few years earlier with his Manfred Symphony. The theme itself has origins in Glinka's opera "A Life for the Tsar", which uses the words "turn not into sorrow". Tchaikovsky's treatment in the first movement, Andante - Allegro con anima, is very somber and foreboding, opening with a theme described as Fate, or Providence, low and slow in the clarinet and bassoon. This theme comes back in all movements, but by movement four it has evolved into a hopeful and triumphant theme of accomplishment, betterment, and hopefulness. It was a idea used so successfully by Beethoven in his fifth symphony, that it was often repeated by composers from that time forward.

The second movement, Andante cantabile, con alcuna licenza, opens with a choral introduction in the strings, slow and thoughtful, which sets up one of the most recognized horn solos in the orchestral repertory. A number of modern writers and performers have used this solo theme as the inspiration for their works; "Moon Love" recorded by Glenn Miller and Chet Baker, Annie's song" by John Denver, to name a few. The theme is taken up at various times by the cellos and winds. The Fate theme comes crashing in at times, trying to distract from this beautiful reverie, but without success.

The third movement, Valse: Allegro moderato, is as playful as the second was hopeful and longing. Generally in a waltz feel, and reminiscent of the Nutcracker, the main theme is sometimes interrupted by a sudden stumble into two, with a quick scurrying in the violins to catch back up. Once again Fate tries to cut into the movement, but only at the last, and quite unsuccessfully.

The forth movement, Andante maestoso - Allegro vivace, opens with the programmatic Fate theme once more, but this time in a major, confident way, as if as though Fate is really, finally on our side. It doesn't take long to take on a processional, ceremonial feel, and finally a victorious and triumphant statement of conquest.

In spite of the composer's struggle with his self-worth, Tchaikovsky came out very triumphant with this piece indeed. It is one of the most recognized and often played works, surpassed only by the Nutcracker.

 

"I n the summer I intend to write a symphony..."

- Tchaikovsky

Scored for: 2 flutes, piccolo, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, percussion, timpani, and strings. [3[1.2.pic]222-4231-tmp+3-str]

Related Links

Ney Rosauro (1952- )

and...

Jean Sibelius (1865-1957)

Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893)

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