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Concert Program Cover

First Concert of the 22nd Season

 

Sunday, November 6th, 1960
Central Junior High School

Monday, November 7th, 1960
Columbia City High School
Vernon H. Stinebaugh, Conductor

  Overture to Il Signor Bruschino Gioachino Rossini  
       
  Symphony No. 7 in C Major ("The Noon") Franz Joseph haydn  
 

I. Adagio - Allegro
II. Recitativo: Adagio
III. Minuetto and Trio
IV. Finale: Allegro

 
       
  Intermission  
       
  Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54 Robert Schumann  
 

I. Allegro affettuoso

 
  Kenneth Growcock, piano  
       
  Intermission  
       
  La Follia Arcangelo Corelli
(arr. Sopkin)
 
       
  Selections from My Fair Lady Frederick Loewe  
       

Program Notes by Paul Halladay

  Overture to Il Signor Bruschino Gioachino Rossini
(1792-1868)
 
 

Rossini and opera belong together as much as macaroni and choose; and Rossini and Italian opera were practically synonymous for the lifetime of the man. He, as a member of a musical family, grew up participating in operatic performances, particularly of the lighter type. As a composer, he unquestionably possessed true genius as well as streaks of laziness. Life was a mixture of 'working like a beaver' and basking in his own glory. His name and fame remain with us today chiefly through the incomparable "Barber of Seville" and "William Tell", the latter being best remembered by its overture. Some measure of the influence of Rossini is indicated by his employment in these operatic circles, Bologna, Rome, Venice, Milan, Naples, London and Paris.

Today's opening number is a fine example of an opera having been forgotten but the overture remaining as a favorite concert piece. The overture to an opera can serve either one or both of two purposes; it may just quiet the audience and take care of the late-comers, or it may, through musical themes, give a foretaste of the singing to follow. Rossini's overtures did both. They were attention-getters. This overture is sparkling and gay. Watch for the unusual actions of the violinists when they tap their instruments with the wood of the bows, this done in rhythm. It is typical Rossini.


 
       
  Symphony No. 7 in C Major ("The Noon") Franz Joseph Haydn
(1730-1809)
 
 

After spending thirty-two years in the employ of wealthy noblemen as Music Master of the palace, Haydn was pressed with the desire to see London, this hope being cultivated by a good friend, violinist and impresario, Salomon. Upon the death of Prince Esterhazy, for whom Haydn had worked so long, Mr. Salomon dropped everything, made a bee-line to Vienna and urged Haydn to accompany him to England. From this friendship, both personal and professional, came two very successful trips to London, in 1791 and 1794. From the London trips came a series of twelve symphonies and the notable oratorio, The Creation. These twelve works are known by either of the alternate names, Salomon symphonies or London symphonies.

Students of music remember Haydn for two outstanding achievements, the perfecting of the classical symphonic form and the balancing of the instrumentation of the orchestra to two-thirds strings and all other instruments one-third, approximately. While new instruments have since been added, the balance remains essentially unchanged. This symphony is a perfect example of the perfect pattern of formal structure; it is in four movements.

Movement I is in sonata-form, which means that there must be an exposition, development, and recapitulation; there may also be an introduction, transitional passages, and a coda. This movement has them all. Haydn was fond of short, slow introductions and this has one of thirteen measures in length. Then pops out, in rapid tempo, the first theme, the beginning of which we can easily recognize by the tones, do, sol, mi, do, in downward motion with the entire orchestra joining. It is aggressive, masculine. Some sixty-odd measures later the second theme appears in more gentle mood, feminine, and in a contrasting key. It begins with the first violins. Next follows the development in which the composer gives a discussion on the two themes, resorting to key changes, playing them in full or in part or even scrambling them. This is followed by a summary, similar to the original statements, called the recapitulation. Thus ends the movement.

Movement II is in a slow tempo and the instruments seem to 'sing,' reminding one of vocal music. The violins introduce the chief melody, the string choir carries it forward with little outside help, making a variation of the original. Then the full orchestra joins and we find ourselves in a minor key. A second variation and a coda close the movement.

Movement III, a minuet and trio brings a change in tempo and mood; it is amiable and energetic throughout. If not carried to extremes, there is some logic in the old saying that the first movement is for the head, the second for the heart, and the third for the feet. Minuets belong to court life, with its elegance and refinement and minuets in symphonies reflect this charm and grace. The trio is really another minuet, contrasting with the first. The movement ends with a return to the first minuet.

Movement IV follows the usual pattern for a final movement. It is a rondo, the word suggesting that we get 'around' to the main theme every so often. Haydn's pattern here is: 1) main theme, 2) contrasting theme, 3) main theme, 4) different contrasting theme, 5) main theme again, and the movement is rounded off with a coda (tailpiece). Nearing the end of an extended work it is time for vigor and merriment; this rondo moves very rapidly and is bursting with gaiety. Thus ends twenty-five minutes of sheer delight.


 
       
  Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54 Robert Schumann
(1810-1856)
 
 

The critics are not always right! When this concerto was first performed in London, a leading critic, speaking of the performance of Clara Schumann, the composer's wife and a splendid pianist, commented on her "praiseworthy efforts ... to make her husband's curious rhapsody pass for music". Time has proven the critic to be wrong. Robert Schumann, born in Zwickau, Germany, in 1810 began life with high purpose to become a top flight pianist. So arduously did he practice (and all students of piano will understand how 'bound up' that fourth finger is) to overcome technical deficiencies, that he contrived a mechanical device to strengthen his fingers. He overdid it and permanently crippled his hand. Two ways yet remained open and he became a master in both -- composition and journalism. He was a contributor to and later editor of the Neue Zeitschrift fur Music, thus influencing all Europe in the movement toward Romanticism.

Subtracting 1810 from 1960 we get 150. This is the sesquicentennial year of Schumann's birth and today's performance is in celebration of this fact. This concerto was originally conceived as an independent piece with the title Fantasia. It was two years later that he extended it, adding two other movements. As the term concerto implies, it is for a solo instrument with full orchestra. It follows the sonata-form, a form previously discussed in today's notes. However in this case we hear the subjects passed back and forth and discussed by both the piano and the orchestra. Sometimes they seem to compete and sometimes cooperate; this is the enjoyable character of a concerto. This kind of composition represents one of the more demanding forms, technically, and it calls for the best ears an audience has.


 
       
  La Follia Arcangelo Corelli
(1653-1713)
(arr. Sopkin)
 
 

In Corelli's day, which we now call the 'Baroque Era', Chamber music, music performed by small groups and intended for more intimate surroundings rather than large concert halls was quite the fashion. Two general types were cantatas (works to be sung) and sonatas (works to be played). Corelli, a very skillful violinist as well as composer, confined his works to the instrumental area; yet, withal, his music has a singing character to it. This composition will give evidence.

La Follia is really a theme with variations and was composed for a trio of instruments, violin, cello and harpsichord. The theme is announced in sixteen measures and then Corelli followed with twenty-three variations. Mr. Sopkin, the transcriber, has brought this work out of the chamber music surroundings to that for full orchestra and has limited this version to six variations.

La Lollia, or Folia, is a sarabande and was an old folk tune, probably of Portuguese origin and was well known a hundred years before Corelli appropriated it. A sarabande is a slow moving, dignified dance in triple meter, at one time used in religious processions about the altar.


 
       
  Selections from My Fair Lady Frederick Loewe
(1901-1988)
 
 

The concert closes, as it opened, with a composition related to the drama. This work is not an overture, but rather a fantasia or potpourri, the terms indicating a free arrangement of a series of melodies gleaned from a common source. Mr. Bennett, the transcriber, has selected choice melodies which are sung in the stage production and has woven them together into a continuous composition. It has all the ear marks of a good Broadway Musical; it overflows with charming melodies with typical rhythms of popular song.

For all who are familiar with My Fair Lady it will be a delight to follow these hit tunes which follow in this sequence: "I Could Have Danced All Night," "On the Street Where You Live," "Wouldn't It Be Loverly," "Show Me," "The Embassy Waltz," "Get Me to the Church on Time," "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face," and "With a Little Bit of Luck."


 
       
 

Manchester Symphony Orchestra Personnel

 
  Violin I
Madonna Persons, Concertmistress +
Gerald Sweet
DeeAnn Weibly +
Donna Stewart
Sandra McKinney
Beverly Shull +
Marilyn Jones
Rosemary Manifold
Betty Pease

Violin II
Shirley Kehr *+
Dianne McKinney +
Louis Durflinger
Dorothy Baer
Rosemary Bolinger
Miriam McCleary
Lynn Coble
Karen King +
Uldis Stulpins
Geraldine Antrim
Irene Sites
Joe Warner

Viola
Lloyd Hoff *
John Cooley
Donald Godlevski
Frances Early +
Elaine Shilts
Wayne McKinney

Cello
Jeanne McKinney *
Bonita Gibble +
Priscilla Lyman
Vivien Singleton
Mack Whitmore
James Mentzer

Bass
Vernon Rector *+
Jerry Lackey
Walter Kerfoot
William Hawthorne

Flute
Nancy Royer *+
Donna Scott +
Lou Ann Wieand +
Oboe
Reis Flora *+
Rosemary Blickenstaff +
Susan Yeatter +

Clarinet
Alan Long *+
Nancy Studebaker +

Bass Clarinet
Donald Shilts

Alto Saxophone
Linda Lorenz +

Tenor Saxophone
Janet Baker +

Bassoon
Theodore Atsalis *
Carol Miller +

Horn
Edward Pease *
Norene Keenen +
Dennis Rohrs
Sue Whitmore

Trumpet
David DeLauter *+
Rex Hornish +

Trombone
Truman Reinoehl *+
Susan Hunsberger +
Joel Haney (Bass)

Tuba
Barry Ritzler +

Timpani
Kent Hennon +

Percussion
George Merkle +
Don Cripe +
Janet Baker +

Piano (Harp)
Theresa Hemphill +

* Denotes principal
+ Denotes MC student
       
 
Kenneth GrowcockKenneth Growcock has spent most of his life in and around Columbia City, Indiana. His teachers have included Dr. Marie Simmers of Ft. Wayne, Mrs. Paul L. Speicher of North Manchester, and at Sherwood Music School in Chicago he studied with Herbert Renison, artist teacher of piano and Hugh Price, artist teacher of organ. More recently he has been a student of Dr. Harold Berlinger of the Sherwood faculty. In 1958 he completed the Bachelor of Music degree and the following year the Master of Music degree. His concert appearances have included three performances as piano soloist with the Sherwood Symphony Orchestra in Orchestra Hall, Chicago, in concertos by Grieg, Beethoven, and Chopin. In addition to his teaching of piano and organ at his private studio, 107 W. Ellsworth St. in Columbia City, he presents many piano and organ recitals in the area. For the past ten years he has served as organist at Grace Lutheran Church in Columbia City. We are proud to present Mr. Growcock as our soloist in this pair of concerts.
 
 
The second concert of the twenty-second season will be on Sunday, February 26. Plans are underway for a very interesting program, designed for youth as well as adults. The final concert of the season will be on Monday night, May 8, 1961.

Sponsors whose names and contributions were not received in time to be placed on the list for this concert will be added at succeeding concerts.