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Concert Program Cover

Fourth Concert of the 61st Season

Young Artist Competition Winners

Sunday, May 14th, 2000
Cordier Auditorium
Robert Jones, Conductor

  Violin Concerto in E Minor, Op. 64 Felix Mendelssohn  
 

I. Allegro molto appassionato

   
  Ben Weiss, violin  
       
  Mass No. 2 in G, D. 167 Franz Schubert  
 

I. Kyrie
II. Gloria
III. Credo
IV. Sanctus
V. Benedictus
VI. Angus Dei

 
  Carol Streator, soprano
Jeff Ballard, tenor
Vaughan Bryner, baritone
Choral Society and A Cappella Choir
 
       
  Intermission  
       
  Violin Concerto No. 22 in A minor Giovanni-Battista Viotti  
 

I. Moderato

   
  Louisa Ann Danielson, violin  
       
  Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 7 Robert Muczynski  
 

I. Maestoso

   
  Mary Rose Jordan, piano  
       
  Selections from The King and I Richard Rogers
(arr. R.R.Bennett)
 
       
 

Program Notes by James R. C. Adams

 
  Violin Concerto in E Minor, Op. 64 -- Mvt. 1 Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy
(1809-1847)
 
 

The "Big Three" of early nineteenth-century romantic composers were Chopin, Schumann, and Mendelssohn. They had in common a slightly conservative, almost classical regard for structure. Mendelssohn was a prodigy, who had written an opera and 15 symphonies by the time he was 15 years old (all later discarded). His violin concerto in D Minor, an attractive piece, was written when he was 13. At the age of 36 he became conductor of the Gewandhaus Orchestra of Leipzig. He fulfilled his obligation as a Romantic by dying at the age of 38.

Mendelssohn was a great admirer of Bach, and was largely responsible for reviving an interest in his music. It was on the occasion of his performance of a Bach Passion that he demonstrated his amazing memory. The wrong conducting score was provided, but rather than upset the orchestra, he simply pretended it was the right one, turning pages regularly, and conducting the work from memory.

Critics grant him his melodic gifts, but say his music is never deep, and that he was not an innovator. However, he was one of the first to write concert overtures, and he modified the form of the violin concerto by virtually eliminating the introduction.

The concertos of composers from Mozart through Beethoven commonly allowed a mood of "expectancy" to develop by delaying the entry of the solo instrument. Mendelssohn abandoned this practice, and the result can be heard in this concerto.

The first movement, allegro molto appassionato, begins with no orchestral exposition, just a bar and a half of "ready-when-you-are" low pizzicato and drum-beats, until the violin comes in with a soaring melody. There follows an equally melodious transition, and then the second subject is introduced. Here, the soloist holds a pedal point on the open G string, while the woodwinds take over the theme.

Mendelssohn has managed to write a cadenza with the character of improvisation expected of earlier concertos (at least in principle). This one is so effective, it begs for an encore, and Mendelssohn must have had his fingers crossed as, without the customary break, he went softly into the second movement (which, alas, we are not to hear today!).

Nowadays, audiences wait respectuflly between movements, but interruptions were so common in Mendelssohn's day, that he eliminated the tutti beginning to his movements, and let the soloist rush into prominence just to thwart such outbursts.


 
       
  Mass No. 2 in G, D. 167 Franz Schubert
(1797-1828)
 
 

Schubert was born in Vienna, and died there at the age of 31. He was a younger contemporary of Beethoven, and like him represents a transition between the Classicism of Mozart and Haydn and the Romantic period. Schubert wrote nine symphonies and a great deal of chamber music, but his greatest gift was in melody. He contributed much to the German art song, or Lied, writing several song cycles. He was particularly talented in matching the words of his favorite poets to the appropriate music. He composed with great ease, and very rapidly. His output, considering his short life, is remarkable. It is said that he sometimes failed to recognize his own music when presented with it.

The Mass in G is one of four masses Schubert wrote while still in his teens. It is relatively short, only about 25 minutes, and partly for that reason is frequently performed. Another reason for its popularity is its simplicity. It is scored for strings and organ only, so relatively small groups can perform it. Pieces are often re-orchestrated by later publishers for various reasons. In today's performance, there is no organ. Instead, the orchestra has been augmented by trumpets and timpani.

The Credo is one segment of the mass which is frequently performed alone, and was a favorite of recently deceased choir-master Robert Shaw. The tempo remains the same throughout the movement, producing an almost hypnotic rhythm.

A curiosity is the fact that Schubert omitted the words "and I believe in the one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church" from the end of the Credo. It must have been deliberate, and should have caused much comment at the time. In any case, the words have been restored for almost all performances of the work. Today, however, the work is being sung as Schubert wrote it.


 
       
  Violin Concerto No. 22 in A minor -- Mvt. 1 Giovanni-Battista Viotti
(1755-1824)
 
 

Viotti is not very well-known as a composer, but had a great influence on performance technique. He was perhaps the greatest violinist of his age, playing before Frederick the Great, Catherine the Great, and Marie Antoinette. His teacher, Pugnani, took him all over Europe, where his playing astonished his listeners. By all acounts he was handsome, gracious, witty, and generally delightful. Paris loved him, and he returned the affection, settling there, and writing some 20 violin concertos, as well as concertos for piano, and many sonatas. When the French Revolution broke out, he was suspected of being sympathetic to the aristocrats whom he had charmed, and thought it politic to leave for England, where he had renewed success. His best work (including this concerto) dates from his London period.

In 1818, he was able to return to Paris, where he became director of the Paris Opera. He had less success there and resigned two years later. He died a few years later while on a trip to England. By this time, his fame in France had faded, and his death went almost unnoticed.

Like almost all concertos ofthis period, there is an orchestral introduction of about three minutes before the solo violin makes its appearance. The movement opens with a crescendo followed by a descending, mournful theme in the strings. It is repeated by the woodwinds, supported by the strings. There is a short melodic interval before the theme is repeated once more before there is a change of key, and a brighter theme appears, introducing a Mozartian character to the piece. Viotti was, after all, a contemporary of Mozart, and by some accounts, a close friend. There is a modulation into a section reminding us of Beethoven, but it is brief.

The development section is fairly long, with some rather intricate bowing of the violin actoss the strings (not simply running scales up and down a single string). Again, in the slower portions, Mozart is brought to mind.

The recapitulation begins about nine minutes into the work, and the cadenza about two minutes later. A concerto generally has a cadenza toward the end of the first movement, and often in the last as well. Originally, a cadenza was an opportunity for the soloist to show off, and was often not scored. The performer was expected to extemporize. Even when a cadenza is provided by the composer, it is supposed to sound extemporaneous. The orchestra stops on a drawn-out chord of expectancy, at which point the soloist begins the unaccompanied cadenza. In this case, the cadenza lasts about four minutes, and requires great dexterity. We are reminded of the fact that Viotti was known as an innovator and teacher of violin technique. There is a great deal of double-stopping (playing on two strings at a time), which is common enough, but here is is combined with alternating single-string playing in such a manner as to suggest two violins playing simultaneously. If you listen carefully, you will think you are hearing one violinist playing a theme while another accompanies her with supporting chords.


 
       
  Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 7 -- Mvt. 1 Robert Muczynski
(b. 1929)
 
 

Robert Muczynski was born in Chicago. His music sounds unmistakably modern, but does not belong to a well-defined school. It has a driving energy, reminding one of now Prokofiev, then of Khachaturian, and occasionally of Rachmaninov. Obviously Muczynski was fond of the 20th century Russians. But then there is a touch of French wit, reminding us of Debussy and Poulenc. As a nice bridge, there is the sound of Stravinsky in his French period (Firebird). In other words, Muczynski is eclectic. Until recently "eclecticism" was an insulting term, implying lack of originality. It is coming back into favor, just a little, as people realize that we are all influenced by someone, whether we choose to imitate or, perversely, NOT to imitate.

This is Muczynski's first formal concerto (he doesn't count student works). It was composed in 1954 under a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation for the Louisville Orchestra. At the time of its premiere, Mr. Muczynski was asked about his motivation for specific effects in the music, and he replied that he simply wrote naturally, without trying to make points. He said that the most important factor in composing was spontaneity and that "to plan too much is to lose the spontaneous feeling."

Regarding a performance in 1989, Muczynski had this to say: "It is the effort of a young, aspiring composer still in search of his own musical identity; a starting point. The first movement is grand, dramatic, and lyrical...." that it is. The composer has evidently had second thoughts since the concerto's premiere in St. Louis so many years ago, and he has made several alterations. Originally, it opened with a drum roll and six bleats in the brass before the piano jumped in forcefully. More recently it has opened with a quick crescendo in the percussion section, with no brass before the entry of the solo instrument. This reminds us that music is an evolving medium. Two of the works on today's program have undergone changes since they were first composed, in one instance, by the composer himself. In the other instance, by the publishers.


 
       
  The King and I (Selections) Richard Rodgers
(1902-1979)
arr. Robert Russell Bennett
(1894-1981)
 
 

Probably everyone is familiar with the tunes of this very successful Broadway musical by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein. The history of the story might be less well known. It began life as a novel by Margaret Landon, based on the true story of Anna Leonowen, who acted as governess to the many children of the King of Siam in the 1860s. In 1946, the novel was turned into a movie, starring Irene Dunne and Rex Harrison. Gertrude Lawrence, a star of the London stage at the time, persuaded her friends Rodgers and Hammerstein to convert it to a musical for her. Later, another film was made of this musical version of the movie of the novel!

The movie version of the musical was one of the most successful Broadway shows on record, and brought the work to the attention of millions more. Jerome Robbins staged the film version as he had the stage version and won awards for both.

Most recently, there has been a remake of the first movie version, this time starring Jodie Foster. One might call this reincarnation, déja vu.

Rodgers, of course, wrote the music, Hammerstein the words. Today, we hear the music of Richard Rodgers, arranged by Robert Russell Bennet. Robert Russell Bennett is better known for his arrangements than for his original music. On record are just his Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, and A Song Sonata for Violin and Piano. Besides his arrangement of Rodgers' music for The King and I, there are arrangements of the music of Stephen Foster and of Jerome Kern.


 
       
 

Manchester Symphony Orchestra Personnel

 
  Violin
Linda Kanzawa Ard, Concertmaster
Joyce Dubach *
Chris Beyer +^
Amy Bixler +
Emma Doud
Jamie Eller +^
Sherry Gajewski
Matt Hendryx +
Rosemary Manifold
Rod Morrison
Sandra Neel
Ervin Orban
Margaret Piety
Rebekah Yoder +^

Viola
Naida MacDermid *
Peter Collins
Emily Mondok
Eric Stalter +^

Cello
Tim Spahr *
Valerie Goetz Doud
Anne Gratz
Robert Lynn
David Resitz

Bass
Darrel Fiene *
Randy Gratz
George Scheerer

Piccolo
Barbi Pyrah

Flute
Kathy Urbani *
Carol Snodgrass

Oboe
Rita K. Merrick *
George Donner

English Horn
George Donner
Clarinet
Lila D. Hammer *
Jane Grandstaff

Bass Clarinet
Mark W. Huntington

Bassoon
Erich Zummack *
Jason Kramer

Horn
Nancy A. Bremer *
Bryan Gibson
John Morse
Bill Klickman

Trumpet
Steven Hammer *
Richard Pepple
Nathan Reynolds +^
Shawn Sollenberger +^

Trombone
Jeremy Dawkins *+^ (co-)
Jon Hartman * (co-)
Joel Roman +

Tuba
William DeWitt

Timpani
David Mendenhall

Percussion
Greg Wolff
David Robbins

Harp
Anne Lewellen

* Denotes principal
+ Denotes MC student
^ Denotes MSS Scholarship recipient
       
 

Manchester College A Cappella Choir

 
  Debra Lynn, conductor  
  Soprano
Hillary Blake
Kari Brinkmeier
Alexa Bucher
Dana Barrett
Tiffany Bohnstedt
Emilie Douglas
Kathryn Faris
Janet Funderberg
Alicia Hagan
Brandi Keehn
Sally Liszewski
Iris Lowder
Christina Middleton
Wanda Miller
Amanda Myers-Walls
Jill Noffsinger
Carlotta Olinger
Alicia Roberts
Shelley Smith
Heather Snyder
Amanda Young
Laura Wells
Julie Wieseke

Tenor
David Bever
Matthew Boersma
D.J. Brooks
Keith Crider
Eric Kuszmaul
Howard McKee
Eric Millard
Jamie Salazar
Mark Schwartz
Richard Stiver
Alto
Carrie Albright
Elizabeth Allen
Kristen Calvert
Leslie Cantrell
Tess Carpenter
Sarah DeVries
Abigail Falkiner
Sandy Funk
Liz Geisewite
Penny Heddings
Nykki Keim
Jean Nelson
Amanda Petry

Bass
Jeremy Dawkins
Dwight Farringer
Seth Hendricks
Andy Liszewski
Charles Nelson
Nick Reynolds
Dan  Royer
John Wright
       
 
Mary Rose JordanMary Rose Jordan, first prize winner, is a junior at Goshen High School. She began studying piano with Marvin Blickenstaff at Goshen College at the age of 5. After 11 years under his tutelage, she now studies with David Gross. Her past awards include being the two-time winner in the Senior Division of the Hartman-Stickley Piano Competition, the performance award recipient in the 1998 Manchester Youth Concerto Competition, and the Piano Division winner of the 1999 South Bend Concerto Competition. Most recently she was named winner of the State IMTA Competition, alternate in the Music Teachers' National Association, winner of the Fort Wayne Youth Artist Concerto Competition, winner of the Elkhart County Concerto Competition, and won third place in the Indianapolis Youth Concerto Competition.

Mary Rose has soloed with the Manchester Symphony Orchestra, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic, the Elkhart County Youth Honors Orchestra, and her own school orchestra.

In addition to playing the piano, Jordan is a violinist and is active in her county youth orchestra, as well as her school orchestra. She also plays tennis and is in her third season as a varsity player. Last year she received the Dan Chiddister Doubles Award and her team captured the conference and sectional crowns. She also enjoys sewing and reading.

Mary Rose will be attending the Indiana University Piano Academy this summer in Bloomington. She plans to major in piano performance in college and hopes to achieve a doctorate in piano pedagogy. She is the daughter of Mark and Sherry Jordan.
Louisa Ann DanielsonLouisa Ann Danielson, runner-up, is the daughter of Louise and Jerry Danielson of Fort Wayne, Indiana. She has been a member of the Fort Wayne Youth Symphony since 1998 and was a soloist in their November, 1999, concert. Louisa began studying violin at the age of 3 with Janet Guy-Klickman. Currently she is a member of the Suzuki Chamber Music Program and is concert master of the Suzuki Advanced Orchestra.

Louisa has attended Suzuki Institute of the University of Wisconsin-Steven's Point for 11 years and has been selected as a soloist for three of those years. At age 10, she won the county and regional 4H Share the Fun Contest and performed at Purdue. She has also won first place at the county fair and performed at the state fair.

At age 11, Louisa Ann was the winner of the Fort Wayne Philharmonic Young Artist Competition, junior division and soloed with the Philharmonic. Louisa has received a Performance Certificate from the Taylor University, Fort Wayne Performance Contest three times, the most current being this year. She will solo there May 16.

Louisa auditioned for and was awarded an SAT scholarship and has also been awarded the Trentacosti Scholarship and the Evelyn Blitz Fine Arts Scholarship. In addition to violin, Louisa studies piano and has been a National Winner in Piano Guild Auditions for six years.

Benjamin WeissBenjamin Weiss, honorable mention, is the son of G. Michael and Celia Stinebaugh Weiss and is a junior at Elkhart Central High School. He has been playing the violin for seven years, studying with the late Jon Toth, and currently with Eric Shumsky. Ben was the Gold Medal winner of the Elkhart County Symphony Association Concerto Competition in 1998, soloing with the orchestra in February, 1998, and in November, 1998, won First Prize in the Fort Wayne Philharmonic Young Artist Concerto Competition. He played the first movement of the Bruch Violin Concerto in G minor with the Fort Wayne Philharmonic Orchestra in Fort Wayne on Nov. 14, 1999. He was the String Division winner of the South Bend Symphony Orchestra Young Artist Concerto Competition last February and was guest soloist with the orchestra in March, 2000.

An honor roll student, Ben is Concertmaster of the Elkhart Central High School Symphony Orchestra and Concertmaster of the Elkhart County Youth Honors Orchestra. He is on the Central High School varsity tennis team where he has received the Most Valuable Player award for the past three years and has won several trophies in the USTA tennis tournaments. Last summer he was selected from string players from all over the world to attend the prestigious Indiana University String Academy in Bloomington, Indiana. He was selected ast the Fischoff Artist of the Month of November, 1999, and recently won a full scholarship to the Interlochen Center for the Arts as the Emerson Scholar in Violin for the state of Indiana.

He enjoys reading, fishing, basketball, and running, but his all-time passion is playing the violin.

Carol StreatorCarol Streator, soprano, holds a master's degree from the Eastman School of Music, where she studied with Metropolitan opera star, Anna Kaskas. Her concert experience has included opera, oratorio and chamber music, and recitals in both New York state and Indiana.

Mrs. Streator teaches part time at Grace College, Winona Lake, and maintains a private studio for voice. Sundays find her directing Ecclesia Choir at the Manchester Church of the Brethren, and she recently founded a small madrigal group.

She has served many years as a district and state contest judge and is a member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and American Choral Directors Association.

Carol is the wife of Dr. James T. Streator of Manchester College and they have two sons, Eric and Randy.

Jeffery BallardJeffery Ballard, tenor, is a versatile singer and musician who has sung with opera companies and at festivals throughout the United States and Europe, including principal roles in Don Giovanni, Carmen, Le Nozze di Figaro, The Magic Flute, Cendrillon, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Hansel and Gretel, The Village Singer, H.M.S. Pinafore, The Mikado, The Pirates of Penzance, madama Butterfly, Dialogues of the Carmelites, Gianni Schicchi, Pirates Ida and Werther. His performances have met with acclaim both for his singing and his acting. "Engaging," raved the Atlanta Journal-Constucition, "a rich tenor, with a delight flair for comedy as well as for singing." Echoed the Eugene Register-Guardl "Both musically and dramatically vital." Having also traveled widely as oratorio soloist and recitalist, Mr. Ballard has performed with orchestras across the United States and has twice appeared as Artist Fellow at the Bach Aria Festival in New York. Since completing his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in voice performance in 1993, Mr. Ballard has taught voice and helped develop Opera Workshop programs at three universities, including Ball State University, where he was appointed as assistand professor of music in 1997. Several of his students in Pennsylvania, Oregon, and Indiana have won vocal competitions and appeared in principal roles in opera and musical theatre.

Vaughn BrynerVaughn Bryner, baritone, is a Doctor of Arts candidate with a major in vocal performance at Ball State University and is a native of South Bend, Indiana. His oratorio experience includes solo work in Handel's Messiah, Donizetti's Requiem, DuBois' Seven Last Words of Christ, and Vaughan Williams' Serenade to Music. Mr. Bryner's opera credits include performances with the Whitewater Opera Company, Indiana Opera North, Ball State Opera Theatre, Notre Dame University, and Southwestern Michigan College in roles such as Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, Schaunard in La Boheme, the Father in Hansel and Gretel, the Judge in Trial by Jury, Ferrando in Il Trovatore, Marulla in Rigoletto, the Prist/Speaker in Magic Flute, and Dave in Samuel Barber's A Hand of Bridge.Other experiences include numerous appearances in opera scene concerts and Broadway revues. In 1995, he was awarded the William Warden Scholarship to attend an intensive two-week opera and oratorio training program with the International School of Performing Arts. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bethel College and a Masters of Music degree in vocal performance from Ball State University.
Debra Lynn, director of choral activites at Manchester College, is in her second year as assistant professor of music at Manchester College where she serves as director of choral organizations and instructor of applied voice. In addition to the Manchester Choral Society, Debra conducts the A Cappella Choir and The Entertainers. She recently completed doctoral studies at Ball State University, where she served for three years as assistant conductor for all vocal ensembles. Dr. Lynn has studied conducting with Douglas Amman, Paul Vermel, Paul Crabb, and Arnold Epley. Debra has held conducting and teaching positions at Northeast Missouri State University, William Jewell College, Mid-America Nazarene College, and New Paseo Academy of Fine and Performing Arts. Debra is married to tubist, Robert Lynn. They reside in North Manchester with their four daughters, Bethany, Abby, and twins: Emily and Erin.