Tuesday, November 14
Danielpour's "American Requiem"
On today’s date in the year 2001, the Pacific Symphony premiered a new choral work by the American composer Richard Danielpour. Titled “An American Requiem,” its text in part was based on the traditional Latin mass for the dead, but included as well excerpts from American writers such as Emerson and Whitman on themes of life and death.
In 1995, the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II had prompted many Americans to reconsider the sacrifice of American veterans, the so-called “Greatest Generation.” Danielpour conducted informal interviews with World War II vets, as well as veterans of the Korean and Vietnam conflicts. “I found myself in the presence of individuals with an integrity and nobility of heart that I had rarely seen in my own generation,” wrote Danielpour, after finishing his “An American Requiem.”
On the morning of September 11, 2001, two months before its scheduled premiere, Danielpour received a delivery of the orchestral parts of his new work to correct. Looking at his score, Danielpour realized he had forgotten to inscribe a dedication on its title page, and called his publisher in New York to discuss the matter. He ended up talking to someone who, from her office window, had just seen the second jetliner slam into the World Trade Center. “In the ensuing days as I edited and finalized the score of my work, I had, in the most disquieting way, found my dedication.”
Music Played in Today's Program
Richard Danielpour (b. 1956)
An American Requiem
Soloists, Pacific Chorale and Symphony; Carl St. Clair, cond.
Baptism of German composer, organist and teacher (of Handel and others) Friedrich Wilhelm Zachow, in Leipzig.
German-Austrian composer Leopold Mozart (father of Wolfgang Amadeus), in Augsburg.
Italian composer and conductor Luigi Spontini, in Majolati.
German composer and pianist Johann Nepomuk Hummel, in Pressburg (now Bratislava).
German composer Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel, sister of Felix, in Hamburg.
American composer Aaron Copland, in Brooklyn, N.Y..
American composer and Moog synthesizer virtuoso Wendy (known until 1979 as Walter) Carlos, in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.
Austrian-born composer, music publisher and piano maker Ignaz Josef (Ignace Joseph) Pleyel, age 74, in Paris.
Austrian bandmaster and operetta composer Karl Michael Ziehrer, age 79, in Vienna.
Spanish composer Manuel de Falla, age 69, in Alta Gracia, Argentina. In 1939, at the end of Spanish Civil War, de Falla retired to Argentina and lived in seclusion.
English composer Richard Addinsell, age 73, in London. He is most famous for his popular “Warsaw Concerto,” based on his music for the British film “Dangerous Moonlight” (released in the U.S. as “Suicide Squadron”).
Bach: Sacred Cantata No. 90 ("Es reisset euch ein schrecklich Ende") performed on the 25th Sunday after Trinity as part of Bach's first annual Sacred Cantata cycle in Leipzig (1723/24).
Beethoven: String Quintet, Op. 29, at Beethoven's apartment in Vienna.
Tchaikovsky: Suite No. 4 (“Mozartiana”), in Moscow (Gregorian date: Nov. 26).
Dvorák: symphonic poem "The Water Goblin," Op. 107, in London.
Oskar Strauss: operetta "Der tapfere Soldat " (based on George Bernard Shaw's play "Arms and the Man"), in Vienna. .As "The Chocolate Soldier" this work opened in New York in 1909, and in London in 1910.
Prokofiev: Symphony No. 4 (first version), by the Boston Symphony, Serge Koussevitzky conducting. A second version of this work was premiered on March 11, 1950 broadcast by the BBC Symphony, Sir Adrian Boult conducting. The first public performance of the revised version occurred on January 5, 1957, at a concert by the USSR State Symphony conducted by Gennady Rozhdestvensky.
Hindemith: "Der Schwanendreher (Concerto on Old Folk Songs for Viola and Small Orchestra)," by the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra conducted by Willem Mengelberg, with the composer as soloist.
Shostakovich: Piano Trio No. 2, in Leningrad, by Dimitri Tsiiganov (violin) and Sergei Shirinsky (cello), with the composer at the piano, on the same program as the premiere of Shostakovich's String Quartet No. 2, by the Beethoven Quartet.
Roy Harris: "Symphonic Epigram," in New York City, Dimitri Mitropoulos conducting New York Philharmonic.
Henry Cowell: Symphony No. 6, by the Houston Symphony, Leopold Stokowski conducting.
Copland: "Proclamation" for Orchestra (orchestrated by Philip Ramey), at Avery Fisher Hall in New York City, by New York Philharmonic conducted by Zubin Mehta.
Andrew Waggoner: Symphony No. 2, in Zlin (Czech Republic), by the Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic, Petr Pololanik, cond.
Richard Danielpour: "An American Requiem" by soloists and the Pacific Symphony, Carl St. Clair conducting.
Italian pianist Emanuele Arciuli premieres 20 short variations on the theme of Thelonious Monk’s “’Round Midnight” at Columbia University’s Miller Theater in New York. The composers who contributed were Roberto Andreoni, Milton Babbitt, Alberto Barbero, Carlo Boccadoro, William Bolcom, Uri Caine, David Crumb, George Crumb, Michael Daugherty, Filippo Del Corno, John Harbison, Fred Hersch, Joel Hoffman, Aaron Jay Kernis, Gerald Levinson, Matthew Quayle, Eric Reed, Frederic Rzewski, Augusta Reed Thomas, and Michael Torke.
Handel’s “Suites des Pièces pour le Clavecin, Premier Volume” (Keyboard Suites, First Collection), is published by John Cluer in London (Gregorian date: Nov. 25).
Gala opening ceremonies of the newly rebuilt Brooklyn Academy of Music (now also known as "BAM") culminate in a special guest performance of Gounod's opera "Faust" by New York's Metropolitan Opera conducted by Francesco Spetrino and featuring Enrico Caruso and Geraldine Farrar in the cast. The original Brooklyn Academy of Music, founded in 1861, had burned down on November 30, 1903.
Leonard Bernstein meets Aaron Copland in New York City.
Leonard Bernstein's surprise conducting debut at Carnegie Hall with the New York Philharmonic, substituting at the last minute for the ailing Bruno Walter. The program consisted of works by Robert Schumann, Miklós Rósza, Richard Strauss, and Richard Wagner.
Leonard Bernstein writes and hosts a famous "Omnibus" telecast on the sketches of the 1st movement of Beethoven's Symphony No. 5.
Leonard Bernstein conducts the National Symphony (Washington, D.C.) in a concert celebrating Aaron Copland 80th birthday featuring Copland's "Lincoln Portrait," with Copland as the narrator.
"A Concert Remembering Lennie" presented at Carnegie Hall. Bernstein had died in New York City on October 14 that year.