Richard Pittman & NEP Present: Form and Variations
April 27, 2013
Richard Pittman and the New England Philharmonic Present Form and Variations?Gunther Schuller: Five Bagatelles?Benjamin Britten: Piano Concerto with Randall Hodgkinson, piano?Steven Stucky: Rhapsodies (First Boston Performance)?Jean Sibelius: Symphony No. 7 Saturday, April 27, 8 PM Tsai Performance Center, Boston Boston, MA--New England Philharmonic, under the direction of Richard Pittman, will present "Forms and...
Richard Pittman and the New England Philharmonic Present Form and Variations?Gunther Schuller: Five Bagatelles?Benjamin Britten: Piano Concerto with Randall Hodgkinson, piano?Steven Stucky: Rhapsodies (First Boston Performance)?Jean Sibelius: Symphony No. 7 Saturday, April 27, 8 PM Tsai Performance Center, Boston Boston, MA--New England Philharmonic, under the direction of Richard Pittman, will present "Forms and Variations" on Saturday, April 27 at 8 PM at Boston University's Tsai Performance Center, located at 685 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston. This concert will feature Gunther Schuller's Five Bagatelles, Benjamin Britten's Piano Concerto, Steven Stucky's Rhapsodies (Premiere Boston Performance) and Jean Sibelius' Symphony No. 7. "We're paying tribute to the 100th birthday of Benjamin Britten with his Piano Concerto, a wonderful work which he first performed as the soloist and which has rarely been performed in Boston," says Music Director Richard Pittman. "Also on this program is Gunther Schuller's Five Bagatelles, one of his finest works and infrequently performed. In addition, we'll be doing the first Boston performance of Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steven Stucky's Rhapsodies, commissioned and first performed by the New York Philharmonic. And finally, the Sibelius Symphony No. 7 is his last symphony--one of his finest symphonies and also the shortest." Gunther Schuller's Five Bagatelles represent new musical ideals and conceptions. That is to say, these pieces are abstractions which do not tell stories, but rather create moods, states of mind and present the ear with a variety of musical ideas and structures which speak for themselves as music. Each movement isolates one of the new problems orchestral players face in the performance of new music. Each movement can be seen as a study in one aspect of contemporary orchestral techniques. The term Bagatelle has been used by many composers including Beethoven and, in our own time, Anton Webern. It generally refers to a piece of music brief in duration and light in character, a “moment musicale.” Schuller's varied and influential musical career as composer, conductor, educator, performer and author has extended more than seventy years and counting, and has ranged across jazz as well as classical music. Among his many educational posts, he served ten years as President of the New England Conservatory of Music. Benjamin Britten's Piano Concerto, Op. 13 is the composers sole piano concerto. It was written in 1938 and then revised in 1945, supplying a new third movement. This was Britten's first work for piano and orchestra, which he premiered as soloist at a Promenade Concert in 1938. The concerto is a 'bravura' work that has gained more international attention in recent years. Britten described the piece as "simple and in direct form." Pianist Randall Hodgkinson won the International American Music Competition sponsored by Carnegie Hall and the Rockefeller Foundation and he has performed as a soloist with numerous orchestras including the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra and with orchestras in Italy and Iceland. Widely recognized as one of the leading composers today, Steven Stucky was awarded the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in Music for his Second Concerto for Orchestra. He has written commissioned works for many of the major American orchestras and ensembles. The New York Philharmonic's Music Director Lorin Maazel invited Stucky to compose a short work for its European tour of August-September 2008, and he suggested that he write something "rhapsodic." His resulting work, Rhapsodies, is rhapsodic in two senses. It has a freely developing form, as if improvised, and it trades in ecstatic, fervent forms of expression. Although it is in one continuous movement, Rhapsodies is titled in the plural because it unrolls as a series of rhapsodic episodes, usually triggered by a single player whose ardent phrases gradually "infect" his neighbors until soon a whole section of the orchestra is sounding ecstatic. Symphony No. 7 in C major, Op. 105, was the final published symphony of Jean Sibelius. Completed in 1924, the Seventh is notable for being a one-movement symphony, in contrast to the standard symphonic formula of four movements. After Sibelius finished its composition on March 2, 1924, the work was premiered in Stockholm on March 24 as Fantasia sinfonica No. 1, a "symphonic fantasy". The composer was apparently undecided on what name to give the piece, and only granted it status as a symphony after some deliberation. General admission tickets for this concert at $25.00 are on sale now. $5.00 tickets for students are available with ID at the door. To purchase individual concert tickets, go here: http://www.nephilharmonic.org/tickets/. Free parking is available behind the Tsai Performance Center, at 240 Bay State Road and the venue is also wheelchair accessible. Saturday, April 27, 2013, 8:00 P.M. Tsai Performance Center, 685 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston?Form and Variations?Richard Pittman, conductor?Randall Hodgkinson, piano?Gunther Schuller: Five Bagatelles?Benjamin Britten: Piano Concerto?Steven Stucky: Rhapsodies (First Boston Performance)?Jean Sibelius: Symphony No. 7 Tickets: $25.00; $5.00 for students