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Mendelssohn and the Reformation

October 2017


SCHUSTER CENTER DIRECTIONS

   8:00 pm Friday, October 13, 2017 | 7:00 pm Take Note with Neal Gittleman and Larry Hoffsis   
   8:00 pm Saturday, October 14, 2017 | 7:00 pm Take Note with Neal Gittleman and Larry Hoffsis   

BACH Cantata No. 80, Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott 

BEETHOVEN Choral Fantasy 
MENDELSSOHN Capriccio Brillant
MENDELSSOHN Symphony No. 5, "Reformation" 

ANGELA CHENG piano WEBSITE

CHELSEA FRIEDLANDER soprano WEBSITE  

ELIZABETH FREY mezzo-soprano WEBSITE  

BRIAN SKOOG tenor WEBSITE  

VINCENT GRANA bass-baritone WEBSITE  

RACHAEL ANDREW BOEZI soprano 
MARK HANSON tenor 
NEAL GITTLEMAN conductor WEBSITE    
DAYTON PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA

DAYTON PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA CHORUS
DAYTON PHILHARMONIC CHAMBER CHOIR 
HANK DAHLMAN director, DPO Chorus and Chamber Choir WEBSITE

The year 2017 marks the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. International events throughout the year will celebrate and recognize Martin Luther and his historic 95 Theses. The world of music, always heavily linked to the world of faith, has long contributed to the celebration of Reformation Day. The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra continues this tradition. 

The evening begins with Johann Sebastian Bach’s Cantata No. 80, also known as “Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott” (“A Mighty Fortress Is Our God”). Bach composed this chorale cantata for Reformation Day celebrations, basing the work on Martin Luther’s hymn setting for Psalm 46. 

The Philharmonic then performs Choral Fantasy by Ludwig von Beethoven. He wrote this piece in 1808, during what is often called his “middle period” (from 1803 to 1813). It is during this period that Beethoven came to grips with his hearing loss. And it is at this time that his music became stronger, almost heroic. Choral Fantasy was premiered in a four-hour concert that also featured his Fifth and Sixth Symphonies, as well as his Piano Concerto No. 4! 

For the performance of Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Mendelssohn’s Capriccio Brillant, the DPO will be joined by guest pianist Angela Cheng. This talented musician from Canada has appeared as soloist with more than 100 orchestras both in the United States and around the world. Cheng also holds a position as professor of piano at Oberlin College and Conservatory. 

The final two pieces of the evening are works by Felix Mendelssohn. Capriccio Brillant is a charming piece written in 1832, while Mendelssohn was on an extended visit to Paris. It is works such as this Capriccio that helped mark Mendelssohn as one of the “Sunshine Composers”—a group that also included Giaochino Rossini and Camille Saint-Saëns, two other composers of truly optimistic, joyous music. Mendelssohn is lucky to have been recognized for his talent and craftsmanship within his lifetime. He wrote his Symphony No. 5 in preparation for the 300th anniversary of Luther’s Augsburg Confession, an important date in the Protestant Reformation. The composer had become ill during the writing of the work, however, and finished too late for the commission’s deadline. Just as Bach did for his Cantata, Mendelssohn gained inspiration for the symphony from Martin Luther’s hymn “Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott.” The hymn also lies as a motif in the third and fourth movements of "Reformation."  

“Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea” (Psalm 46). . . . Join us as the music of the evening celebrates our world, physical and spiritual.  
  

Series sponsored by Premier Health 

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DP&L Foundation DPAA Innovation Partner – Powering Innovation in the Performing Arts
Bob Ross Auto Group
Official Automobile Dealership of the DPO
DataYard Official Data Provider of the DPO
Marriott University of Dayton Official Hotel of the DPO
One Call Now DPAA Communications Partner

ThinkTV and Discover Classical 88.1 and 89.9 FM Masterworks Series Media Partners  

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