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TCU Symphonic Band Brian Youngblood, Conductor Donald · PDF file TCU Symphonic Band Brian Youngblood, Conductor Donald Hale, Guest Conductor Joshua Donnelly, Guest Conductor October

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  • Presents

    TCU Symphonic Band Brian Youngblood, Conductor Donald Hale, Guest Conductor

    Joshua Donnelly, Guest Conductor

    October 15, 2020 7:00pm TCU Music Center Recorded October 7, 2020

    Program

    Overture from “Dancer in the Dark” Bjork Gudmundsdóttir (b.1965)

    Arr. Andrei Strizek Donald Hale, Guest Conductor

    Second Suite in F Gustav Holst I. March (1874-1934) II. Song without words I’ll love my Love Ed. Colin Matthews III. Song of the Blacksmith

    IV. Fantasia on the “Dargason”

    Mysterium Jennifer Higdon (b. 1962)

    Joshua Donnelly, Guest Conductor

    Millennia Stephen Melillo I. Art of the State (b. 1957)

  • Presents

    TCU Wind Symphony Bobby Francis, Conductor

    George Ishii, Guest Conductor Malcolm Williams, Guest Conductor

    October 15, 2020 7:00pm TCU Music Center Recorded October 8, 2020

    Program

    Silver Fanfare Peter Boyer Malcolm Williams, Guest Conductor (b. 1970)

    El Camino Real Alford Reed (1921-2005)

    Wayfaring Stranger Christopher Nelson (b. 1987)

    American Salute Morton Gould George Ishii, Guest Conductor (1913-1996)

    Galactic Empires David R. Gillingham I. Battlestar of the Andromeda Nebula (b. 1947)

    II. Eveningstar of the Magellanic Cloud

    III. Earthstar of the Milky Way

    The Melody Shop Karl King (1891-1971)

  • SYMPHONIC BAND PROGRAM NOTES

    Overture from “Dancer in the Dark”-Bjork Gudmundsdóttier, Arranged by Andrei Strizek

    Winner of Cannes Film Festival’s Palm d’Or in 2000, Dancer in the Dark is a genre-defying cinematic creation, incorporating elements of melodrama, documentary, musical, and experimental film, shot in the manner of cinema vérité. The audience is made to feel as though they are a participant, rather than an observer, in the tumultuous and descending trajectory of the main character, Selma.

    The Overture from Dancer in the Dark begins by rising from the stasis of the opening pedal. As the music develops, layers of the brass chorale establish a haunting, shimmering, melancholic mood upon which a main theme emerges. This motif, indicative of Selma, is restated and elaborated, each time becoming simultaneously more urgent and inexorably entwined in the darkening complexity of the work’s underlying harmonic web. As quickly as the work crests, it dissolves back to a more stable form of the stasis from which it grew.

    Second Suite in F-Gustav Holst, Edited by Colin Matthews

    The Second Suite consists of four movements, all based on specific English folk songs.

    Movement I: March: Morris dance, Swansea Town, Claudy Banks. "The "March" of the Second Suite begins with a simple-five note motif between the low and high instruments of the band. The first folk tune is heard in the form of a traditional British brass band march using the Morris-dance tune "Glorishears". After a brief climax, the second strain begins with a euphonium solo playing the second folk tune in the suite, Swansea Town. The theme is repeated by the full band before the trio. For the trio, Holst modulates to the unconventional sub-dominant minor of B-flat minor and changes the time signature to 6/8, thereby changing the meter. (Usually one would modulate to sub-dominant major in traditional march form. While Sousa, reputably the "king of marches", would sometimes change time signatures for the trio (most notably in El Capitan), it was not commonplace.) The third theme, called Claudy Banks, is heard in a low woodwind soli, as is standard march orchestration. Then the first strain is repeated da capo.

    Movement II: Song Without Words, 'I'll Love My Love'. Holst places the fourth folk song, I'll Love My Love, in stark contrast to the first movement. The movement begins with a chord from French horns and moves into a solo of clarinet with oboe over a flowing accompaniment in F Dorian. The solo is then repeated by the trumpet, forming an arc of intensity. The climax of the piece is a fermata in measure 32, followed by a trumpet pickup into the final measures of the piece.

    Movement III: Song of the Blacksmith. Again, Holst contrasts the slow second movement to the rather upbeat third movement which features the folk song A Blacksmith Courted Me. The brass section plays in a pointillistic style depicting a later Holst style. There are many time signature changes (4/4 to 3/4) making the movement increasingly difficult because the brass section has all of their accompaniment on the up-beats of each measure. The upper-woodwinds and horns join on the melody around the body of the piece, and are accompanied with the sound of a blacksmith tempering metal with an anvil called for in the score. The final D major chord has a glorious, heavenly sound, which opens the way to the final

  • SYMPHONIC BAND PROGRAM NOTES

    movement. This chord works so effectively perhaps because it is unexpected: the entire movement is in F major when the music suddenly moves to the major of the relative minor.

    Movement IV: Fantasia on the Dargason. This movement is not based on any folk songs, but rather has two tunes from Playford's Dancing Master of 1651. The finale of the suite opens with an alto saxophone solo based on the folk tune Dargason, a 16th century English dance tune included in the first edition of The Dancing Master. The fantasia continues through several variations encompassing the full capabilities of the band. The final folk tune, reensleeves, is cleverly woven into the fantasia by the use of hemiolas, with Dargason being in 6/8 and Greensleeves being in 3/4. At the climax of the movement, the two competing themes are placed in competing sections. As the movement dies down, a tuba and piccolo duet forms a call back to the beginning of the suite with the competition of low and high registers.

    The name 'dargason' may perhaps come from an Irish legend that tells of a monster resembling a large bear (although much of the description of the creature has been lost over time). The dargason tormented the Irish country side. During the Irish uprising of the late 18th Century, the dargason is supposed to have attacked a British camp, killing many soldiers. This tale aside, 'dargason' is more likely derived from an Anglo-Saxon word for dwarf or fairy, and the tune has been considered English (or Welsh) since at least the 16th century. It is also known as 'Sedony' (or Sedany) or 'Welsh Sedony'.

    Holst later rewrote and re-scored this movement for string orchestra, as the final movement of his St Paul's Suite (1912), which he wrote for his music students at St Paul's Girls' School.

    -Program Note by Imogen Holst

    Mysterium-Jennifer Higdon

    Mysterium is Higdon’s own arrangement of her sacred choral work O Magnum Mysterium for wind ensemble. The composition incorporates an ancient medieval liturgical tradition and presents it in a modern, yet approachable compositional language. The original work was reviewed in the Main Line Times:

    “Jennifer Higdon has become one of the most sought-after up-and-coming composers in America. She has responded to that position as well as her growing acclaim by composing music that is both challenging and accessible. Her O Magnum Mysterium is a clever setting in both Latin and English of the traditional text that marvels at the birth of the Saviour... the music is harmonically original yet compellingly comprehensible, perhaps.”

    Upon completion of the wind setting, Higdon wrote: “Mysterium is a tribute to the wonderful mystery of how music moves us. Perhaps it is the unexplainable that creates such magic, for both the performer and the listener, but there is no denying the incredible power of a shared musical experience.”

  • SYMPHONIC BAND PROGRAM NOTES

    Millennia: Movement I The Art of the State-Stephen Melillo

    Composer Stephen Melillo writes of Millennia, “We live during an interesting time. As a college student, I recall many discussions with classmates who shared the unshakeable feeling, that somehow, they would not live beyond the age of 45. There seems to reside in us a sort-of build-in precipice as we approach the beginning of the new millennium. The transition is simple a change of numbers, yet we anticipate this ‘crossing over’, somehow fascinated with all the new zero’s. Questions abound.

    This work, Millennia, is an offering, a prediction if you will, about what may await us at the dawn of the new millennium. The movement titles are merely pointers, the graphic…a picture to speak a thousand words. Or should I say “two thousand”. But, my friends and sensitive Musicians…Music transcends, for in its indescribable whisper, Music speaks a thousand pictures.

    Art of the State, interestingly enough, is a piece composed with exacting proportions. I say ‘interesting’ because the effect desired is one where the chaos of order is imposed. When calculated at the tempi from which I maintain a constant between all of the ‘storm’ work pieces… that of mm=90, the first movement is exactly twice as long as the second. This is all a part of the inner message, which is more of a formal concern. Against the natural inner architecture of the piece, the 4-note motif collides. It is a number not contained within the Fibonacci series…though related. As the 4-note motif ascends, the air should increase, so that with each iteration, each upward repetition, there is a continual crescendo, an unyielding swelling.

    This work, as are all stormworks, is dedicated to those who believe that Light will triumph over darkness. Gospeed!”

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