As Pride Month comes to a close and Independence Day draws near, we pay tribute to an iconic gay composer who was celebrated for his “Americana” sound, Brooklyn’s own Aaron Copland. His third symphony is also known as the “Great American” and features the theme from his famous “Fanfare for the Common Man.” Read the concert notes, written by TŌN trumpet player Guillermo Garcia Cuesta, by clicking here.
On May 17, 2020, several musicians from The Orchestra Now organized a concert of chamber music benefiting the Columbia County Sanctuary Movement‘s Mano a Mano Mutual Aid Fund, which directly provides aid to immigrant families affected by the pandemic. The concert features works written by Rebecca Clarke, Pierre-Octave Ferroud, Olivier Messiaen, Steven Stucky, Johann Sebastian Bach, Willson Osborne, Francisco Mignone, Gabriel Fauré, Malcolm Arnold, Luciano Berio, Lera Auerbach, and Franz Schubert. You can view the concert program by clicking here.
The musicians encourage viewers to to research immigrant aid organizations in their areas and support them if possible.
Donate to the Columbia County Sanctuary Movement by clicking here.
Visit The Sanctuary Concert Project Facebook page by clicking here.
This Tuesday’s audio flashback is the first symphony of Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. Written in the composer’s late teens and early 20s, this symphony was an assignment from Rimsky’s composition teacher, and the second movement was written while he was at sea in the Russian navy. Some hailed the piece as “the first Russian symphony” due to its use of Russian folk melodies and avoidance of traditionally German compositional techniques. Read the concert notes, written by former TŌN harpist Emily Melendes, by clicking here.
The Orchestra Now pays tribute to our heroes, the front line workers keeping our communities safe and healthy, with a special at-home performance from Beethoven‘s “Heroic” Symphony No. 3.
This week we’re looking at the theme of heroism in music. We invite you to stream our performance of R. Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben (“A Hero’s Life”), a work in six movements which the composer (tongue planted firmly in cheek) said features “lots of horns—which is always a measure of heroism.” Read the concert notes, written by former TŌN violinist Sophia Bernitz, by clicking here.
This week we’re looking at theme of heroism in music. We invite you to stream our performance of Wagner’s Siegfried’s Rhine Journey from the opera Götterdämmerung or “Twilight of the Gods”, depicting the ride that our hero and his lover take along the mighty Rhine River. Read the concert notes, written by TŌN violist Leonardo Vásquez Chacón, by clicking here.
This Thursday’s video feature is a flashback to our December 2016 performance of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov‘s Scheherazade with conductor JoAnn Falletta. Former TŌN violinist Holly Nelson introduces the piece at the top of the video, and you can read the concert notes, written by former TŌN violinist Grace Choi, by clicking here.
0:00 Introduction by Holly Nelson violin
2:57 The Sea and Sinbad’s Ship
12:56 The Legend of the Kalendar Prince
25:19 The Young Prince and The Young Princess
36:11 Festival at Baghdad—The Sea—The Shipwreck
This Tuesday’s audio flashback is our 2018 performance of the First Symphony of African American composer William Grant Still, which he dubbed the Afro-American Symphony. Written in 1930, this was the first symphony by an African American composer to be performed by a major orchestra in the United States. Still said that in writing the piece, he sought to portray “the sons of the soil, who still retain so many of the traits peculiar to their African forebears.” You can read more of Still’s notes on the symphony by clicking here.
The Orchestra Now remains committed to the fight against racial injustice, and stands in solidarity with black communities.