The Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra presents The World of Stravinsky - Sunday, September 27, 2015 at 3pm
Kalamazoo, MI September 11, 2015 - The Kalamazoo Symphony presents The World of Stravinsky, an interactive and immersive concert experience exploring the life and music of Igor Stravinsky. Maestro Raymond Harvey will guide listeners through the life of Igor Stravinsky; uncovering the influences and inspirations behind some of his best known and lesser known works. Born in 1882, Stravinsky garnered fame as a composer, provocateur, and revolutionary until his death in 1971. No stranger to controversy, some performances of his works were greeted with riots and protests thereby grinding the performances to a halt. However, since those riotous times, he has become regarded as one of the truly great composers who ever lived.
Stravinsky's Appollon musagète (1927-28), a ballet depicting the life of the classical Greek god Apollo, was described by contemporaries as "music somehow not of this world, but from somewhere else above." Although some of his most traditional and conservative music, Appollon musagète contains some of Stravinsky's most inventive and creative writing.
The Octet (1922-1923) is the clearest example of Stravinsky's neoclassical style. At its first performance, the audience was surprised, prompting Aaron Copland to write, "Here was Stravinsky...now suddenly, without any seeming explanation, making an about-face and presenting a piece to the public that bore no conceivable resemblance to the individual style with which he had hitherto been identified." Rather than the progressive music he had written earlier in his career, the Octet was classical--decidedly retro.
The Hollywood film industry was very happy in 1940 when Igor Stravinsky moved into town. However, despite their proposals including astronomical fees for his music, he turned down their offers to write a film score. The piece, Four Norwegian Moods (1944), was originally an attempt at a score for a war-themed movie. However, disagreements with the producers led Stravinsky to pull the score from the movie. However, it reemerged when the Boston Symphony premiered the piece at Harvard University in 1944 with a pleasant reception. When it was premiered in Paris, however, a group of young students led by Pierre Boulez disrupted the performance with loud booing and noisemakers. They were unhappy with Stravinsky's seemingly regressive neoclassic period and wished he would write more modern, progressive works as he had earlier in his career.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
This season Maestro Harvey celebrates 17 years as Music Director of the Kalamazoo
Symphony Orchestra. He previously held the top post at the Fresno Philharmonic (California), Springfield Symphony (Massachusetts), and El Paso Opera (Texas).
Maestro Harvey has appeared as guest conductor with many of America's leading orchestras, including those of Philadelphia, Atlanta, St. Louis, Indianapolis, Buffalo, Detroit, New Orleans and Minnesota, as well as the New York Philharmonic's Young People's Concerts and the Boston Pops. He has also had engagements with the Maggio Musicale Orchestra of Florence, Italy, the Pusan Symphony of South Korea, and the National Symphony Orchestra of Costa Rica. He regularly performs as a pianist in chamber music and as pianist/conductor in works of Gershwin, Mozart, and Rachmaninoff.
In addition to his commitment to Kalamazoo, Dr. Harvey has been named an Associate Professor at the University of Houston, where he serves as Music Director of the Moores School of Music opera department. His operatic repertoire is extensive, including favorites such as Carmen, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, La Bohème, Turandot, and Aïda; as well as the more rarely performed The Consul, The Rape of Lucretia, and Samson and Delilah.
The Kalamazoo community continues to embrace Raymond Harvey through appreciation of his compelling performances and engaging lectures.
D. Terry Williams, Narrator
D. Terry Williams, Professor Emeritus of Theater at Western Michigan University, will narrate Stravinsky's fantastical tale, L'histoire du soldat (The Soldier's Tale). In 1918, while war was waged throughout Europe, Igor Stravinsky was tucked away safely in Switzerland. However, he was unable to access his royalties in Germany and Russia so he was penniless. He, along with a novelist friend, decided to write a portable theater piece to take on tour throughout Switzerland to earn extra cash. The result was L'histoire du soldat, one of Stravinsky's greatest masterpieces. In the story, a Russian soldier sells his fiddle to the devil. Through the course of the work, the devil proves to be too crafty a protagonist for the soldier.
Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra presents
The World of Series
The World of Stravinsky
Raymond Harvey, Conductor
D. Terry Williams, Narrator
The Kalamazoo Symphony presents World of Stravinsky, an interactive and immersive concert experience exploring the life and music of Igor Stravinsky. Maestro Raymond Harvey will guide listeners through the life of Igor Stravinsky; uncovering the influences and inspirations behind some of his best known and lesser known works. Born in 1882, Stravinsky garnered fame as a composer, provocateur, and revolutionary until his death in 1971. No stranger to controversy, some performances of his works were greeted with riots and protests thereby grinding the performances to a halt. However, since those riotous times, He has become regarded as one of the truly great composers who ever lived.
Sunday, September 27, 2015 at 3pm
WMU's Dalton Recital Hall
Student and Veteran ticket discounts available
For tickets, visit www.kalamazoosymphony.com, call the KSO Box Office at (269) 349-7759 or call Miller Auditorium Ticket Office at (269) 387-2300.
Visit www.kalamazoosymphony.com for up-to-date information, details and schedules. Prices, artists, dates, time and program are subject to change without notice.
The Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra receives major support from the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation, the Kalamazoo Community Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs. The Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra also receives generous support from other local, state and national foundations, as well as private and corporate support. For more information, visit www.kalamazoosymphony.com.
ABOUT THE KALAMAZOO SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Founded in 1921, the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra is Southwest Michigan's premier musical organization, providing musical enrichment to over 80,000 adults and youth per year. The third-largest professional orchestra in the state, the KSO has won numerous awards and grants, including the Met Life Award for Arts Access in Underserved Communities, the National Endowment for the Arts for its extensive education programs, and a major Ford Foundation grant to found its innovative Artist-in-Residence program.