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The Kennedy Center

Sir Mark Elder conducts the NSO

National Symphony Orchestra: Reveries from Ravel: Mother Goose & Daphnis et Chloé

Thursday, May 10, 2018 - Saturday, May 12, 2018

National Symphony Orchestra

For his second week with the NSO, Sir Mark Elder unites the works of three First World War-era composers and contemporaries. The program includes Butterworth's A Shropshire Lad Rhapsody, Vaughan Williams's "A Pastoral Symphony," and Ravel's Mother Goose Suite and Daphnis et Chloé Suite No. 2.

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For his second week with the NSO, Sir Mark Elder unites the works of three First World War-era composers and contemporaries. The program includes Butterworth's A Shropshire Lad Rhapsody, Vaughan Williams's "A Pastoral Symphony" featuring soprano Madison Leonard, and Ravel's Mother Goose Suite and Daphnis et Chloé Suite No. 2.

NSO Music Director Gianandrea Noseda's notes on the program:
"For his second week with the NSO, Sir Mark Elder unites an intriguing trio of composers. Vaughan Williams was a friend to both Butterworth and Ravel, and the three were musical contemporaries amidst the chaos of the First World War. For the first half of this program, which coincides with the 100th anniversary year of the war’s end, wartime influence makes its way to the foreground.
Mark begins with Butterworth’s A Shropshire Lad Rhapsody, which draws its inspiration from two songs in his cycle of the same name and honors the legacy of British soldiers. In a tragic twist of fate, Butterworth—a British Army soldier and rising star of English composing—was himself later killed in combat. He left many of his manuscripts to Vaughan Williams, who would compose the moving “Pastoral Symphony” drawing in part from his own experiences as an ambulance driver in France during the war. Vaughan Williams, in turn, was briefly a pupil and confidant of Ravel, who also shared his wartime occupation. In a peaceful reprieve, however, Mark turns to two of Ravel’s fantasy-inspired works that preceded the conflict: his complete ballet score for the whimsical Ma mère l’oye (Mother Goose) and a ballet suite from his magical Daphnis et Chloé. Though seemingly out of place, this music is rendered all the more precious in the wake of Butterworth and Vaughan Williams’s reminders of the dark days of wartime. "


Performance Timing: Part One - 40 min.; Intermission - 15 min.; Part Two - 45 min.

NOTE: THE FRIDAY PERFORMANCE IS A COFFEE CONCERT
Our wildly popular late-morning Coffee Concerts at 11:30 a.m. on select Fridays return for a third season! These concerts are perfectly timed so that you don't need to worry about rush hour traffic, both arriving and leaving.

Preceding each Coffee Concert, a la carte breakfast items will be available for purchase in the KC Café from 9:30 to 11:15 a.m. The menu will consist of:
- Assorted muffins, scones, and croissants
- Bagels, cream cheese, butter, and jam
- Freshly cut fruit
- Coffee, tea, and juice

AfterWords
Immediately following the Thu., May 10 performance

Stay after the performance for an insightful discussion with the some of the exciting guest artists and NSO musicians featured on the night's program, moderated by NSO Director of Artistic Planning Nigel Boon. You may even have an opportunity to ask a question! Look for even more of these offerings throughout the season; each AfterWords is free with your concert ticket.

ForeWords, with Ted Libbey
Beginning at 6:45 p.m. before the Sat., May 12 performance

Take a journey into the fascinating stories behind the music led by knowledgeable and engaging artists and scholars! Look for even more of these offerings throughout the season; each ForeWords begins at 6:45 p.m. (the Concert Hall doors open 15 minutes prior), lasts 30 minutes, and is free and open to the public.

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