DAYTON, OH (September 19, 2018) – On Sunday, October 14, 2018 at 3 pm in the Mead Theatre of the Schuster Center, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, under the direction of Artistic Director and Conductor Neal Gittleman, will present Bernstein and Brahms, the second concert in the Dr. Charles and Patricia Demirjian 2018–2019 Sundae Classics Season. Sponsorship partner for this Classical Connections series is Graeter’s.
Maestro Gittleman opens the program by taking us to the streets of an idealized New York City in wartime 1944. The musical On the Town has its roots in the ballet Fancy Free, choreographed by Jerome Robbins to Leonard Bernstein’s score. Then Lenny, America’s newly minted heartthrob composer/conductor, chanced upon his Broadway friends Betty Comden and Adolphe Greene in Hollywood. Why not expand the music from Fancy Free into a big musical and take Broadway by storm? They did, and 462 performances later it sparked a legacy of great singable, danceable tunes, not to mention a hit film. The dance music (extracted from the original musical) performed on this program captures the spirit, romance and joy of “New York, New York, what a wonderful town…”
The program then turns to Brahms’ warm and melodic Symphony No. 2. After finally completing his first symphony, with performances that generated enthusiastic critical acclaim, Johannes Brahms quickly followed suit with his second work in the genre. Written over the course of one summer in 1877 (his first took 14 years), his Symphony No. 2 is another one that marches down the halls of time as one of the greats. It is full and rich, lyrical and sunny, and features a profusion of memorable melodies. Before the debut performance, the subversive Brahms taunted his friends, saying that the orchestra should play it with black crepe on their sleeves and the score should be printed with a black border. Hardly! Its obvious exuberance is a fitting climax for a program that expresses the joy of place and time, the joy of expression and the joy of just being alive.
A casual Q&A session with Neal Gittleman will follow the performance in the Wintergarden, along with a scoop of Graeter’s ice cream!
Tickets for Bernstein and Brahms range from $12 to $44 and are available at Ticket Center Stage (937) 228-3630 or online at www.daytonperformingarts.org. Senior, teacher and military discounts are available at the box office. For more information or to order subscriptions for the 2018-2019 Vistas Season, including flexible subscription types that include performances by Dayton Philharmonic, Dayton Opera and Dayton Ballet, visit www.daytonperformingarts.org.