National Symphony Orchestra: Beyond the Score: Mendelssohn's Symphony No. 4--Why Italy?
Friday, April 25, 2014,
For aficionados and newcomers alike, this series uses actors, narration, excerpts, and multimedia to share captivating stories behind a score, followed by a full performance of the work. This event explores Mendelssohn's delightful "Italian" Symphony.
"A runaway hit! Newbies and seasoned concertgoers can meet, learn, and be entertained."--Chicago Tribune
Experience Mendelssohn's enchanting "Italian" Symphony like never before in this fascinating multimedia concert!
Osmo Vänskä, conductor Thomas Keegan, actor Mitchell Hébert, actor Nigel Boon, narrator
"I am composing with such freshness and such vigor… that my new… Italian Symphony… will be the most joyous thing I've ever written."--Felix Mendelssohn
In 1830, a 21-year-old composer from Berlin set out for Italy. What he saw when he got there filled him with astonishment. Here beyond the mountains was another world, an awe-inspiring landscape filled with sunlight and drama and dotted with the ruins of the ancient Roman Empire. Here was the glorious source of so many centuries of artistic inspiration, the legendary "warm south," "the land where the lemon-tree blooms, where the golden orange glows." This was where European civilization had begun!
The young Felix Mendelssohn was swept away. He would return to Germany and write a thrilling symphony capturing in sound the intoxicating excitement he had felt. But when he tried to put pen to paper, the music kept eluding him. Here was one of the most fluent and naturally talented composers who have ever lived--and yet it took him 18 years to find the exact notes with which this sublime and glittering symphony should begin.
Featuring live actors, narration, projected visuals, and musical examples, this multimedia experience reveals the illuminating stories found "inside" the score. After intermission, concertgoers return with newly discovered knowledge to hear a complete performance of the work.
Performance Timing: Part One - 60 min.; Intermission - 15 min.; Part Two - 35 min.
Beyond the Score is produced by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra; Gerard McBurney, Creative Director; Martha Gilmer, Executive Producer.