Friday, December 19, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

University orchestra, chorus team up for end-of-year concert

Christian Baldini will conduct the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra on Friday as it performs the Overture to "Fidelio" by Ludwig van Beethoven and the popular short tone poem "Finlandia" by Jean Sibelius. Courtesy photo

By
From page A11 | May 29, 2012 |

Just the ticket

What: UC Davis Symphony Orchestra and University Chorus

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Where: Jackson Hall, Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, UC Davis

Tickets: $12-$17 general, $8 students; www.mondaviarts.org, (530) 754-2787

The UC Davis Symphony Orchestra and the University Chorus will appear together in a concert at 7 p.m. Friday at the Mondavi Center.

It will be the final concert of the academic year for both groups — and they will be bidding farewell to graduating seniors as they prepare to move on in life, adding to the sense of occasion.

The concert will begin with the Overture to “Fidelio” by Ludwig van Beethoven, a piece the orchestra performed while on tour in Spain earlier this spring, but that has not been featured in the orchestra’s previous concerts at Mondavi earlier this season.

The overture, composed in 1814, comes from the composer’s only opera. Conductor Christian Baldini said the overture is a natural as the opening segment of a concert program, because it is dramatic and yet also contains several changes of mood and pace — all in less than 10 minutes.

“It begins in a very powerful and energetic way,” Baldini said, “yet it becomes immediately mysterious, almost hesitant. It takes a while for the thrilling final section of the overture to arrive and make us feel the same excitement — or even more — as in the beginning.”

Baldini also will conduct the popular short tone poem “Finlandia” by Jean Sibelius. Composed in 1899, at a time when Finland was a semi-autonomous grand duchy within the Russian empire, and many Finns were increasingly resentful of the growing interference and increasingly despotic control of Czarist authorities, “Finlandia” is a bold musical rallying cry for independence and self-determination.

The turbulent music is brimming with spectacular displays by the brass and percussion sections, and soaring melodies for the strings. The stately march that emerges at the end of the 10-minute piece is the most famous part of the piece. In 1934, arranger Lloyd Stone  adapted the melody and added words to create a pacifist hymn (“This Is My Song,” aka “A Song of Peace”) that is commonly heard in Protestant hymnals and is widely performed by choral groups.

Baldini notes that while the famous melody at the end is stately and dignified, “Sibelius begins the piece in a very somber way” with “dark initial chords (that) immediately tell us that it has to do with suffering and oppression — you can feel that from the very first sounds. But the piece finishes in a very positive way.”

The second half of the concert, to be conducted by Jeffrey Thomas, will feature the University Chorus and the orchestra in a performance of the Requiem by Maurice Duruflé.

Composed in 1947, shortly after the conclusion of World War II, the Duruflé Requiem draws on thematic material from ancient Gregorian chant (naturally with some changes and modifications by the mid-20th century composer).

Duruflé told an interviewer that all of  the melodies in the Requiem are “based exclusively on themes from the Gregorian funeral mass. Sometimes I adopted the music exactly, leaving the orchestra to support or comment, in other passages (the chant) served merely as a stimulus.”

In an article in the New Yorker in March, under the teasing headline “Elegant Theft,” writer Russell Platt noted that while the ancient Gregorian elements selected by the composer “swim in a luxuriant harmonic bath that combines elements of (late 19th and 20th century French composers) Debussy, Fauré and Messiaen,” the result is nonetheless “spellbinding,” and Platt concludes that “Duruflé unquestionably made a unique art work with a powerful personal stamp,” even as he incorporated material from ancient sources.

The vocal soloists for the Requiem will be mezzo-soprano Danielle Reutter-Harrah and baritone Robert Stafford. Reutter-Hannah is pursuing a master’s degree in vocal performance at the San Francisco Conservatory; she has performed under conductor Thomas with the American Bach Soloists. Stafford was featured in the American Bach Soloists’ recording of J.S. Bach’s St. Matthew Passion.

Tickets are $12 to $17 general and $8 for students, available at www.mondaviarts.org or (530) 754-2787.

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
    UCD, UC team up to study effects of climate change

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Teens’ goal? Helping other soccer players around the world

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    There’s a plate for you at the Davis Holiday Meal

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Help sought in search for runaway Davis teen

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

     
    Feds release ‘framework’ to rate colleges

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    Gunfire leads to DUI arrest

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

     
    Police seek suspect in hit-and-run collision

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

     
    Creative women share food, friendship

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Konditorei presents free holiday concert

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Welcome 2015 with Mumbo Gumbo at a gala bash

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Luminaria display planned in West Davis

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Sierra Club calendars on sale Saturday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Willett bench is a labor of love

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A4

    Author! Author! UCD hosts talks, Q and A on Asia-focused books

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Blue Christmas service planned at Davis churches

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Libraries will be closed around the holidays

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

     
    See diving ducks at city wetlands tour

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

     
    Downtown gift cards get a new perk

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6

    Meditation, Buddhism classes offered

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    Nobel Prize winner will discuss research related to autism

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

    A home for the holidays?

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8 | Gallery

     
    Traditional carols service is Saturday at St. Martin’s

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    Explorit: Experience nano this spring

    By Lisa Justice | From Page: A9 | Gallery

     
    Supplies collected for victims of abuse

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

    Grandmothers support group meets weekly

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11, 1 Comment

     
    Soup’s On will benefit NAMI-Yolo

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

    Donate to STEAC at Original Steve’s

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

     
    .

    Forum

    He needs them to pay up

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Kudos to Central Park Gardens donors and volunteers

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A14

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A14

     
    Cheers and Jeers: Have you ever seen the rain?

    By Our View | From Page: A14

    Defeating Ebola involves medicine, and prayers

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A14 | Gallery

     
    .

    Sports

    Cousins is back in lineup but Kings fall

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Devil boys hold off scrappy Rio Linda

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Lady Blue Devils rout an undefeated Liberty squad

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    UCD RB coach Wright heads to Florida; what next?

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

    Aggies nab junior college defensive lineman

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Nostra-Dunning makes his college bowl picks

    By Bob Dunning | From Page: B2

    Tennyson’s first goal is the difference in Sharks win

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B6 | Gallery

     
    .

    Features

    Name droppers: Trio elected to academy of inventors

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

     
    .

    Arts

    ‘Before Midnight’ screening is tonight

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A15

     
    DMTC plans New Year’s Eve party

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A15

    Tom Rigney and Flambeau to play

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A15

     
     
    DMTC announces auditions for ‘Sweeney Todd’

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A15

     
    .

    Business

    After 19 years, Alfa Romeo returns

    By Ann M. Job | From Page: A16

     
    .

    Obituaries

    Rena Sylvia Smilkstein

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

     
    .

    Comics