Battle Creek Symphony
Saturday, february 23, 2013, 7:30 pm
W.K. Kellogg Auditorium
Battle Creek Boychoir
The Battle Creek Symphony performs selections from across the pond, including favorites from the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Princess Kate. Plus, Beethoven's monumental and memorable Symphony No. 7.
Advance tickets start at just $8!
This concert is sponsored in part by: Robert & Eleanor DeVries, Dr. Larraine R. Matusak and the following...
Program Notes by Linda Jo Scott
“A Night with the Royals,” will feature Beethoven’s beautiful 7th Symphony, but all of the other six works on the program will be British compositions dating from early in the 20th century to 2012. Five of the six were performed for the marriage of Prince William and and Catherine (Kate) Middleton, last April. Hence the concert has been dubbed “A Night with the Royals.”
The concert will begin with “The Romance in Eb for String Orchestra,”
composed in 1928, by Gerald Raphael Finzi. It wasn’t actually performed until after he had revised it in 1952, but it has been much loved since then and was chosen for the wedding as a tribute to William’s father, the Prince of Wales and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall .
Next will be Beethoven’s 7th Symphony, composed in 1812, after Beethoven had become almost completely deaf. The early parts of the first movement are defined as Poco sostenuto, because of its long ascending scales. Then later it changes to a faster section called Vivace. Its extremely popular second movement, Allegretto, was performed separately over the years as one of Beethoven’s best jewels.
The third movement is a scherzo , and the fourth is an Allegro con brio, which is in sonata form, a pattern most often seen in first movements.
Composer and writer Antony Hopkins (not to be confused with the Welsh actor Anthony Hopkins) says of that work, “The Seventh Symphony perhaps more than any of the others gives us a feeling of true spontaneity; the notes seem to fly off the page as we are borne along on a floodtide of inspired invention. Beethoven himself spoke of it fondly as ‘one of my best works.’ Who are we to dispute his judgment?”
Then, after the intermission, the symphony will play Elgar’s “Pomp and Circumstance,” Number 3, performed tonight as a favorite of Anne Harrigan. It was composed in 1905, as the third out of six pieces by the same name, and first directed by Elgar himself. His first march in the series is the most familiar, since it is played at most graduations in this country, but the others are jewels as well.
For the marriage ceremony itself John Rutter composed “This Is the Day the Lord Hath Made,” and Paul Mealor composed “Ubi Caritas.” Though Mealor was not so well known as Rutter, he was commissioned because his studio is on the Isle of Anglesey, where Prince William and Kate are presently living.
“Jerusalem,” by Sir Hubert Parry, composed in 1916 and based on a poem by William Blake, was also a part of William and Kate’s marriage ceremony because it is one of their favorites.
And finally, “Crown Imperial” was composed by another prominent British composer, William Walton, was first performed at the coronation of King George VI in 1937. It was much loved and later performed at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 and, just last April, for the wedding of William and Kate.
Three excellent local groups of singers, the Battle Creek Boychoir, the Young Men’s Ensemble and Ars Voce will join in on the various British works with lyrics.
Joining the Battle Creek Symphony Orchestra for A Night with the Royals will be Battle Creek's very own premiere a cappella ensemle, Ars Voce, the Battle Creek Boychoir and Young Mens Ensemble.