Here are some notes on how our CURRENT SEASON’S PROGRAMS relate to the following season’s ‘War of the Romantics’:
“FRENCH REBELLIONS – MUSIC OF LES SIX” (October, 2017)
Six French composers grouped together and known for their quite individual, yet pleasing and generally sophisticated composing styles, pleasing audiences of the time. In general, their approach reacts against the heavy romanticism of Wagner, and to a degree, the Impressionism and lushness found in Debussy.
FINE ART PIANO DUO in concert (November, 2017) – Music by Lutoslawski, Piazzolla, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, and the “Nutcracker Suite” by Tchaikovsky
This concert features the music of Brahms (a major composer who, during the later 19th century, was generally considered as carrying the torch for ‘pure’ musical form); and also that of Tchaikovsky, with whom the ‘Russian Five’ of our following program relates. The ballet music of The Nutcracker which we play here, is based on a story written in 1816, The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by E.T.A Hoffman, a Romantic author of fantasy, as well as music critic and composer, Hoffman was fascinated with Beethoven (the iconic source of the entire ‘war of the Romantics’), and he along with his highly imaginative written work on Beethoven, relate very interestingly into the coming conflict.
“A MIGHTY HANDFUL” – The Russian Five (January, 2018)
Again, a group of composers, Russian this time, who, during the second half of the 19th century, were desirous of composing a distinct and ‘true’ Russian classical music. They drew from musical and cultural sources in which they believed strongly. This parallels similar thinking in Germany, among both sides of the warring musical factions.
“MUSICAL FANTASIES! – Two Pianists In Recital” (March, 2018)
An abstract form or context used by many composers over a few hundred years was the Fantasia or Fantasy. It is a fascinating and unique form in that it is associated with complete freedom of imagination. This truly speaks to the heart of the matter in the philosophical Romantic battle of whether composers of classical music should stay traditionally ‘pure,’ or essentially be ‘free’ in their associations and form (or lack thereof). This concert directly leads to the ideas explored by E.T.A. Hoffmann
“BEETHOVEN TO BRAHMS … & E.T.A. HOFFMANN” (May, 2018) – a literary and visual chamber concert
This becomes an actual preview of the next season, with music and story (including visual presentation to enhance our understanding), exploring some of our greatest musical creators; to see how much thought AND imagination is always at work among our world’s composers.