The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is excited to bring its finest players, and a gorgeous repertoire, to Warragul for a wondrous evening of classical music. MSO Associate Conductor Benjamin Northey will guide the Orchestra through Beethoven’s Septet and Brahms’ joyful First Symphony.
The Septet in E-flat major, Opus 20, by Ludwig van Beethoven, was sketched out in 1799, completed, and first performed in 1800 and published in 1802. The score contains the notation: "Der Kaiserin Maria Theresia gewidmet", or translated, "Dedicated to the Empress Maria Theresa."
The composition is in six movements:
Adagio – Allegro con brio (in E-flat major)
Adagio cantabile (in A-flat major)
Tempo di menuetto (in E-flat major)
Tema con variazioni: Andante (in B-flat major)
Scherzo: Allegro molto e vivace (in E-flat major)
Andante con moto alla marcia (in E-flat minor) – Presto (in E-flat major)
The overall layout resembles a serenade and is in fact more or less the same as that of Mozart's string trio, K. 563 in the same key, but Beethoven expands the form by the addition of substantial introductions to the first and last movements and by changing the second minuet to a scherzo. The main theme of the third movement had already been used in Beethoven's Piano Sonata, (Op. 49 No. 2), which was an earlier work despite its higher opus number. The finale features a violin cadenza.
The scoring of the Septet for a single clarinet, horn and bassoon (rather than for pairs of these wind instruments) was innovative. So was the unusually prominent role of the clarinet, as important as the violin, quite innovative.
The Septet was one of Beethoven's most successful and popular works and circulated in many editions and arrangements for different forces. In about 1803 Beethoven himself arranged the work as a Trio for clarinet (or violin), cello and piano, and this version was published as his Op. 38 in 1805.
Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68, is a symphony written by Johannes Brahms. Brahms spent at least fourteen years completing this work, whose sketches date from 1854. Brahms himself declared that the symphony, from sketches to finishing touches, took 21 years, from 1855 to 1876. The premiere of this symphony, conducted by the composer's friend Felix Otto Dessoff, occurred on 4 November 1876, in Karlsruhe, then in the Grand Duchy of Baden.
The symphony is in four movements, marked as follows:
Un poco sostenuto — Allegro – Meno allegro (C minor, ending in C major)
Andante sostenuto (E major)
Un poco allegretto e grazioso (A? major)
Adagio — Più andante — Allegro non troppo, ma con brio – Più allegro (C minor – C major)
The symphony begins with a broad introduction wherein three key elements are heard simultaneously: the low drumming, the rising figure in the strings, and the falling figure in the winds. This introduction was constructed after the remainder of the piece had been scored. The Allegro section of the movement is a large orchestral sonata, wherein musical ideas are stated, developed, and restated with altered relationships among them.
This iconic work for choir and orchestra, which combines classical principles with flavours of world and ethnic music, will be contrasted with the popular Messa di Gloria by Giacomo Puccini.
Symphonic Adiemus, which received its first UK performance in London in late 2017, is a challenging and innovative work, drawing on and extending earlier works which have all been world-wide favourites. Through his use of invented language, unusual rhythms and extensive percussion Jenkins pushes the boundaries of new music development.
Unashamedly operatic, the young Puccini's Messa di Gloria reflects the influence of Puccini's hero, Verdi, and provides a fore taste of his later major works. The joyous themes which run throughout the work complement the exuberant nature of Jenkin's work, and provide an orchestral contrast which will make this a concert not to be missed.