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2023 - 2024 Season

October 14 and 15, 2023

Dvorak’s 7th Symphony, Bohemian Rhapsodies

Sorry Queen fans, but these are rhapsodies by real Bohemians. This vibrant concert explores the rich tapestry of Czech and English music, traversing spirited overtures, evocative suites, fantastical scherzos, soul-stirring concertos, and impassioned symphonies. The evening begins with Smetana's energetic Overture to The Bartered Bride, transitioning seamlessly into the pastoral scenes painted by Kaprálová in her Suita Rustica. The ethereal beauty of Suk's Scherzo Fantastique lends a whimsical touch, before the concert delves into the profundity of Elgar's Cello Concerto, a cornerstone of the Romantic era. Concluding the night is Dvořák's Symphony No. 7, a triumphant blend of folk elements and symphonic tradition. This concert provides a captivating journey through diverse emotional landscapes, perfectly showcasing the enduring charm of these musical masterpieces.

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We will continue to feature women composers performing Joan Tower’s “Made in America”, with wisps of “America the Beautiful” passing through her homage to our country. Then, our salute to two great American institutions, Stephen Sondheim and John Williams! We'll first treat you to familiar and well loved music from the master of the Broadway stage, Stephen Sondheim. We will then join all of America in saluting composer John Williams in honor of his 90th birthday. Star Wars forever!

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Who better to tell stories through drawings inspired by music than the children of New Hampshire? We had to cancel this concert two years ago, disappointing the children who worked so hard to tell the story of “Firebird” through their drawings. We didn’t forget them, as we return with Firebird and the drawings of those children to highlight this year’s version of Drawn to the Music. We’ll also share other stories with “Five Fairy Tales” by Bernard Rogers, and Mussorgsky’s “Night on Bald Mountain”, made famous in Disney’s “Fantasia”.

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Our winter concert reflects the musical travels of our composers. While Wagner’s “Prelude to Das Rheingold” represents a mythical journey on the Rhine, our other composers are represented by real world journeys. Vaughn Williams’ Norfolk Rhapsody portrays the English countryside through a compilation of themes based on local folk songs. Tchaikovsky’s Rococo Variations (featuring our principal cellist, Johnny Mok,), is more a journey of time rather than place, as he writes this lovely piece in a classical style, perhaps inspired by his role model, Mozart. We return to the Rhine River with Robert Schumann’s Rhenish Symphony. He was inspired to write the symphony after a trip to the Rhineland with his wife Clara. This journey was a happy and peaceful trip, which felt to them as if they were on a pilgrimage. He incorporated elements of the journey and portrayed other experiences from his life in the music.

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