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UGA Symphony Orchestra performs in Ensemble Series

Submitted by ceh822 on Wed, 10/06/2021 - 8:16am

Join us in Hodgson Hall on Tuesday, October 12th s the Ensemble Series continues with a concert by the University of Georgia Symphony Orchestra at 7:30.

The program includes pieces by Joan Tower, Walter Piston and Howard Hanson. "Made in America" was written by Joan Tower, who was born in 1938 in South America and came to the US for the first time when she was 9.

“When I started composing this piece, the song "America the Beautiful" kept coming into my consciousness and eventually became the main theme for the work. The beauty of the song is undeniable and I loved working with it as a musical idea. One can never take for granted, however, the strength of a musical idea — as Beethoven (one of my strongest influences) knew so well,” said Tower. A musical struggle is heard throughout the work. Perhaps it was my unconscious reacting to the challenge of how do we keep America beautiful. -Joan Tower

Made in America was commissioned by the Ford Foundation for its Made in America project along with the American Symphony Orchestra League and Meet the Composer Program. The world premiere performance was given by the Glen Falls Symphony Orchestra (NY) on October 2, 2005. 

"Suite from the Ballet, The Incredible Flutist" by Walter Piston (1894-1976).

In 1938, The Incredible Flutist ballet was written and first performed in its entirety by the Boston “Pops”. Although this was Piston’s only work for stage, the work gained him a national reputation. The suite is about half the length of the entire ballet and consists of twelve continuous episodes depicting the activities of the circus in a small quiet town. The first performance of the suite was given by Fritz Reiner in Pittsburgh on November 22, 1940 and continues to be one of his most famous pieces.

Symphony No.2, opus 30, “Romantic” by Howard Hanson (1896-1981) is one of his seven symphonies, and the second has remained his most commonly performed. Hanson utilizes a rich harmonic language in a very homophonic neo-Romantic fashion, which film composers emulate to date. In fact, not only did this work inspire John William’s music for E.T., but also the second movement romantic theme concludes Ridley Scott’s film Alien. The “Romantic” was composed for the 50th anniversary of the Boston Symphony and was premiered on November 28, 1930 under the direction of Serge Koussevitzky. Hanson remarked that his “aim in this symphony has been to create a work young in spirit, romantic in temperament, simple and direct in expression.” He concludes the symphony like a summer blockbuster’s closing credits with a triumphant variation of the three-note theme and the trumpets grandly, fanfare the opening movement’s theme.

Tickets are $12 and $3 with a UGAID and can be purchased online, or through the PAC Box Office by calling 706-542-4400. The concert will also be live-streamed on our website at Masks strongly encouraged if attending in person.

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