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Students to perform at Symphony Hall in celebration of 25th Anniversary of Collaborative Youth Concerts
Friday, February 17, 2012 at 8pm
Sunday, February 19, 2012 at 3pm
Symphony Hall, 301 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA
Jean-Marie Zeitouni, conductor
BEETHOVEN: Egmont Overture
HAYDN: Symphony No. 48, Maria Theresia
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 3, Eroica
Subscriptions and single tickets may be purchased through the Handel and Haydn Box Office by phone at 617 266 3605, online at handelandhaydn.org, or in person at the Handel and Haydn office, Horticultural Hall, 300 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston (M–F, 10am–6pm). Single tickets range from $20 to $78. Student rush available starting one hour before curtain: $15 cash only with valid ID, best available seats subject to availability. Groups of 10 or more receive a 20% discount.
Jean-Marie Zeitouni conducts Beethoven’s groundbreaking Eroica symphony as part of a program celebrating the idea of the “imperial figure” by connecting the historical figures of Napoleon, Egmont, and Maria Theresia. The evening will be kicked off with a special student performance in honor of the 25th Anniversary of the Handel and Haydn Society Karen S. and George D. Levy Educational Outreach Program’s Collaborative Youth Concerts. Associate Conductor John Finney will lead the H&H orchestra and students from Brockton High School, Lawrence School, O’Bryant High School (Roxbury), and Boston Latin School in the “Gloria” from Mozart’s Coronation Mass, which Handel and Haydn will perform in full in April.
Originally named for Napoleon Bonaparte, Beethoven composed his Third Symphony between May and November of 1803, with further polishing early the following year. The composer famously expressed his great outrage over Bonaparte’s decision to crown himself Emperor in 1804 by furiously scratching out his name in the dedication of the original score. The newly minted Eroica symphony was privately performed in the Vienna town house of Prince Joseph von Lobkowitz, to whom the score was then dedicated, in the summer of 1804. Beethoven himself conducted the first public performance on April 7, 1805, in Vienna at the Theater-an-der-Wien.
Eroica marked a significant change in Beethoven’s composition. Maynard Solomon observed, “we know that we have crossed irrevocably a major boundary in Beethoven’s development and in musical history as well.” Its size and shape, density and complexity of musical ideas, and overall scope made Eroica worlds apart from any symphony written before it. The first movement alone, when the exposition repeat is included, runs half the length of an entire late Mozart or Haydn symphony. Instrumentation for Eroica consists of two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons, three horns, two trumpets, timpani, and strings; in this work Beethoven introduced a third horn to the orchestra for the first time.
Also featured on the program is Beethoven’s Egmont Overture, part of a set of incidental music pieces written for Goethe’s play and premiered in June of 1810. The music and dramatic narrative focus on the life and heroism of a 16th-century Dutch nobleman, the Count of Egmont. Composed during the period of the Napoleonic Wars, Beethoven used the work to express his personal political concerns through the exaltation of the heroic sacrifice of a man condemned to death for having taken a valiant stand against oppression. The overture is one of the last works of his middle period and is in a style similar to his Fifth Symphony, which he had completed two years earlier.
The program is rounded out with Haydn’s Symphony No. 48, composed for a visit by the Holy Roman Empress, Maria Theresia, the final celebrated “hero” of the evening. The work is from Haydn’s Sturm und Drang period, which was notable for its agitated or impassioned style.
Jean-Marie Zeitouni returns after making his debut with H&H in 2009. Music director of the Columbus Symphony and recently appointed principal conductor and artistic director designate of I Musici de Montréal, Zeitouni has emerged as one of Canada’s brightest young conductors whose eloquent yet fiery style in repertoire ranging from Baroque to contemporary music results in regular re-engagements across North America. He enjoys a close association with Les Violons du Roy that goes back many years, first as conductor-in-residence, then as associate conductor, and since 2008 as principal guest conductor. Over the years, he has led the ensemble in more than 200 performances in the province of Québec, across Canada, and in Mexico. In 2006, he recorded his first CD with Les Violons du Roy entitled “Piazzolla” which received a JUNO Award for Classical Album of the Year in the category Solo or Chamber Ensemble in 2007. They also recorded two subsequent CDs: “Bartok” in 2008 and “Britten” in 2010.
Upcoming appearances in 2011/12 see him conduct the major Canadian orchestras, including subscription concerts with the Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal Symphonies, as well as a return to the Edmonton Symphony. In the US, he leads the Seattle Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, and Handel and Haydn Society, and will bow in the pit of the St. Louis Opera for a Così fan tutte production in June 2012.
2010/11 brought a slew of return engagements in North America. Highlights in Canada included a Werther production with the Montreal Opera and engagements with the Edmonton Symphony, Calgary Philharmonic, Quebec Symphony, Symphony Nova Scotia, and I Musici de Montréal in a rare guest-appearance. In the US, he conducted the Oregon Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, and Rigoletto with the Cincinnati Opera.
Jean-Marie Zeitouni graduated from the Montreal Conservatory in conducting, percussion, and theory. He studied with Maestro Raffi Armenian.
Harry Christophers enters his third season as Artistic Director of the Handel and Haydn Society with the 2011–2012 Season. Since September 2006, when he led a sold-out performance in the Esterházy Palace at the Haydn Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria, he has conducted Handel and Haydn each season and, following his appointment in 2008, Christophers’ tenure as Artistic Director began with the 2009-2010 season. Christophers and Handel and Haydn have since embarked on an ambitious artistic journey with a showcase of works premiered in the United States by the Handel and Haydn Society over the last 195 years, and the release of the first of a series of recordings on CORO leading to the 2015 Bicentennial. Christophers is founder and conductor of the UK-based choir and period instrument ensemble The Sixteen. He has directed The Sixteen throughout Europe, America, and the Far East, gaining a distinguished reputation for his work in Renaissance, Baroque, and 20th-century music. In 2000, he instituted The Sixteen’s “Choral Pilgrimage,” a tour of British cathedrals from York to Canterbury. With that ensemble, he has recorded close to 100 titles for which he has won numerous awards, including a Grand Prix du Disque for Handel Messiah, numerous Preise der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik (German Record Critics Awards), the coveted Gramophone Award for Early Music, and the prestigious Classical Brit Award (2005) for his disc entitled Renaissance. In 2009, he received one of classical music’s highest accolades, the Classic FM Gramophone Awards Artist of the Year Award, and The Sixteen won the Baroque Vocal Award for Handel Coronation Anthems, a CD that also received a 2010 Grammy Award nomination. Harry Christophers is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Granada Symphony Orchestra and a regular guest conductor with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and the Orquestra de la Comunidad de Madrid. In October 2008, Christophers was awarded an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Music from the University of Leicester. Most recently, he was elected an Honorary Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford and also of the Royal Welsh Academy for Music and Drama.
Teresa Neff received her PhD in Musicology from Boston University. Her research interests center around Gottfried van Swieten, a late 18th-century Viennese patron and composer. Artaria will publish Neff’s edition of Swieten’s symphonies later this year. She has presented papers at the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, the New England Chapter of the American Musicological Society, and the Architecture/Music/Acoustics Conference. She presents concert preview lectures for Elderhostel and Boston Lyric Opera, and also teaches at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and The Boston Conservatory.
The Karen S. and George D. Levy Educational Outreach Program
Established in 1985, the Handel and Haydn Society’s Karen S. and George D. Levy Educational Outreach Program was created with strong ties to the organization’s early leaders. Lowell Mason, best known as the founding father of music education in American public schools, enjoyed a long association with Handel and Haydn, first as musical editor and later as President of H&H from 1827–1832. Mason taught classes at the Bowdoin Street Church and founded the Boston Academy of Music in 1833 to promote music education to the public. When H&H launched its official educational initiative in 1985, it focused on public education with its free school visits that now reach public schools in nine Massachusetts districts; the Collaborative Youth Concerts followed in 1987, in which students from different school districts and cultural backgrounds come together to perform for their communities alongside Handel and Haydn musicians. Collaborative Youth Concerts celebrate their 25th Anniversary in 2012, and honor a rich history of providing students with a sense of achievement and musical ownership in ways that traditional youth concerts cannot.
In 1994, H&H started the Vocal Apprenticeship Program (VAP) with Youth Chorus (grades 6–8) and the High School Soloists pre-professional program, held at New England Conservatory. Later, VAP reached younger students with Singers (grades 3–5) and high school students with its Young Men’s (grades 8–12) and Young Women’s (grades 9–12) Choruses, so that students could grow with the program for several years, increasing their individual sense of accomplishment as they passed through each level. Students enrolled in VAP learn music theory and receive performance opportunities throughout each season. VAP classes take place in the state-of-the-art music division wing of the Boston Latin School, located in one of the most culturally accessible neighborhoods of Boston, next to Massachusetts College of Art; the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum; and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
The Handel and Haydn Society is the only professional music organization in Massachusetts serving as a parent to its own youth ensemble program and regularly presenting them in conjunction with its professional series at Symphony Hall. VAP is also the only youth ensemble program in New England to include individualized scholarships for vocal instruction, diction, and other classes for potential music majors in collaboration with New England Conservatory.
Friday, February 17, 2012 at 7pm
Sunday, February 19, 2012 at 2pm
Higginson Hall, Symphony Hall, 301 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA
Free with concert tickets
Musicologist Teresa Neff gives an illuminating look inside the music and historical context of the program.
H2 Young Professionals Reception
Friday, February 17, 2012, post-concert
Lucca Back Bay, 116 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA
Free with concert tickets
Join us after the concert at Lucca Back Bay for cocktails, conversation, and making connections. We invite you to meet staff, musicians, and other young arts enthusiasts to experience Baroque and Classical music in new and exciting ways.
ABOUT HANDEL AND HAYDN SOCIETY
Handel and Haydn Society (H&H) is a professional Period Instrument Orchestra and Chorus and an internationally recognized leader in the field of Historically Informed Performance, a revelatory style that uses the instruments and techniques of the composer’s time. Founded in Boston in 1815, H&H is the oldest continuously performing arts organization in the United States and has a longstanding commitment to excellence and innovation: it gave the American premieres of Handel’s Messiah (1818), Haydn’s The Creation (1819), Verdi’s Requiem (1878), and Bach’s St. Matthew Passion (1879). Handel and Haydn today, under Artistic Director Harry Christophers’ leadership, is committed to its mission to perform Baroque and Classical music at the highest levels of artistic excellence and to share that music with as large and diverse an audience as possible. H&H is widely known through its local subscription series, tours, concert broadcasts on WGBH/99.5 Classical and National Public Radio, and recordings. Its recording of Sir John Tavener’s Lamentations and Praises won a 2003 Grammy Award and two of its recordings, All is Bright and Peace, appeared simultaneously in the top ten on Billboard Magazine’s classical music chart. In September 2010, H&H released its first collaboration with Harry Christophers on the CORO label, Mozart’s Mass in C Minor—the first in a series of live commercial recordings leading to H&H’s Bicentennial in 2015. The 2010–2011 Season marked the 25th anniversary of Handel and Haydn’s award-winning Karen S. and George D. Levy Educational Outreach Program, which brings music education, vocal training, and performance opportunities to 10,000 students annually throughout Greater Boston and beyond.
Handel and Haydn Society is funded in part by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
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