A Classical Collection of music, including many audience favourites, will be presented by Sinfonia MNC during a series of concerts in September.
Among the new pieces is Paul Hindemith’s 1922 German Christmas musical play, Tuttifäntchen.
Tuttifant is a wood carver who makes a puppet (a Kasper – a Punch like puppet) which comes to life.
Akin to the Nutcracker Suite, the music describes the many fantastic adventures which befall the puppet and Tuttifant’s daughter and her eventual heroic rescue by Tuttifant’s apprentice.
Audiences will hear such movements as Musik zum Kaspertheater (music for a puppet show) and Tanz der Holzuppen (dance of the wooden puppets).
Contrasting to this highly adventurous piece is Johann Sebastien Bach’s 1712 Sheep May Safely Graze, from Cantata No 208, orchestrated by Clark McAllister.
This was originally written to celebrate a birthday and was not published until after Bach’s death. Everybody’s favourite.
Another fantastic piece Night on the Bare Mountain, also known as Night on Bald Mountain, by Modest Mussorgsky will bring the audience out of its pleasant reveries.
It is based on the Russian legend of the witches’ sabbath which was said to occur on St John’s Eve (23rd June).
Mussorgsky completed this work on St John’s Eve in 1867. This abridged version was arranged by Gareth Glyn, and Walt Disney “borrowed” the work for Fantasia.
We are not off the mountain yet, as the next piece will be Edvard Greig’s 1875 work, In the Hall of the Mountain King, also arranged by Gareth Glyn.
This piece musically describes the fury of the mountain king, a Norwegian folk tale troll, because a human – Peer Gynt - has seduced his daughter.
The second half of the program will be much less dramatic, though no less interesting, commencing with the beautiful Adagio in G Minor by Remo Giazotti/Tomaso Albinoni, arranged by Alan Arnold.
This highly controversial, much loved piece, may well have nothing of Albinoni in it at all, but Giazotti claims he completed Albinoni’s 1708 work in 1958. Whatever the truth, it is a much loved piece.
Almost as controversial as to the possible musical references to his friends are Edward Elgar’s Enigma Variations, composed between 1898 and 1899, arranged by Iain Farrington.
All the concert’s arrangements by Gareth Glyn, Alan Arnold and Iain Farrington have featured in the latest London Proms.
What Classical Collection would be complete without something From a New World? We will play a piece from Antonín Dvořák 1893 Symphony No 9. Sinfonia is in good company, Neil Armstrong took a copy with him for the 1969 moon landing.
Back to Europe and Georges Bizet’s 1867 comic opera Carmen, which shocked and scandalised the Parisians.
The audience will hear the music for Escamillo’s Toreador Song, where he proclaims love awaits him and Carmen’s Habanera, where she tells of love’s capriciousness. Aha! Poor José and poor Micaëla. These pieces were arranged by Gareth Glyn and Andrew J. Smith.
After all this excitement the concert will end with simple musical passion, an abridged version of Johann Sebastien Bach’s pre-1708 Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, orchestrated by Clark McAllister. A suitable ending for an exciting afternoon.
The Classical Collection concerts will be held at Krambach School of Arts on September 9, Upper Lansdowne Community Hall on September 22 and St John’s Anglican Church Taree on September 23 – all at 2pm.
Tickets available online or at the door, please check the webpage: sinfoniamnc.com.au.
The concert series follows the orchestra’s heavy involvement in the Manning Winter Festival – both as a complete orchestra, accompanied by Kantabile and Company of Voices, and also through individual members’ performances.
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