March 5 Concert Includes Bernstein’s “West Side Story,” Copland’s “Fanfare”
Feb. 22, 2017 – West Bend, WI – The Kettle Moraine Symphony (KMS) takes listeners back into the not too distant past as it presents 20th Century Classics featuring the music of Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, and Benjamin Britten on Sunday, March 5, at 2 p.m. at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, with a Pre-Concert Talk at 1 p.m.
The program includes Copland’s “Hoe-Down,” “Quiet City,” and “Fanfare for the Common Man”; Bernstein’s “West Side Story”; and Britten’s “Simple Symphony.”
“The music represents the 20th Century at a ‘sweet spot’ era,” said Lindsay Riemer, KMS music director and conductor. “It was the beginning of the Golden Age of musical theater in America.”
In addition, pianist Callie Olinski, senior division winner of the 46th annual Washington County Youth Concerto Auditions, will play Piano Concerto in A minor, movement 3, by Romantic era composer Robert Schumann.
Here’s more about the music:
- Leonard Bernstein composed the music for “West Side Story,” a contemporary musical adaption of Romeo and Juliet set in New York’s Upper West Side and first presented on Broadway in 1957. “I Feel Pretty,” “America,” and “One Hand, One Heart”—embedded in the soundtrack of American music memory—are included in this arrangement.
- Benjamin Britten, of Britain, composed his “Simple Symphony” for strings at the age of 20 in the winter of 1933-34, using bits of score he had written for piano a decade earlier. He dedicated this exuberant and playful symphony to his childhood viola teacher.
- Copland’s Hoe-Down is one of five sections scored by Copland for the 1942 ballet “Rodeo.” Inspired by a typical Western Hoe-Down dance party, it incorporates the folk tune “Bonaparte’s Retreat” and has famously appeared in popular culture, including as the background theme for the “Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner” advertising of the 1990s.
- In contrast, Copland’s 1939 “Quiet City” presents a different, uplifting ode to the Big Apple at night, incorporating a lonely trumpet and an English horn, and backed by tranquil strings.
- Copland wrote “Fanfare for the Common Man” in response to the U.S. entry into World War II, inspired in part by a famous 1942 speech proclaiming the dawn of the “Century of the Common Man.” Brass and percussion are powerful in this noble fanfare that celebrates all who contributed to victory.
The KMS and Moraine Area Private Music Teachers Organization are proud to feature Callie Olinski’s performance of the Schumann concerto, the composer’s only concerto, which was completed in 1845. Callie, 16, is the daughter of Tom and Michele Olinski of Campbellsport and is a piano student of Lori Schneider. This is her second appearance with the KMS, having won the competition in 2015.
The free Pre-Concert Talk at 1 p.m. will be presented Peter Gibeau, University of Wisconsin-Washington County music professor and KMS principal bass.
Concert tickets are $18 for adults, $15 for seniors, and $5 for students and children. They may be purchased online by going to the KMS website at www.kmsymphony.org, or by check made out to the Kettle Moraine Symphony, PO Box 52, West Bend, WI 53095. For more information, visit the website or call 262-334-3469.
Our Savior’s Lutheran Church is located at 1044 S. Silverbrook Drive, West Bend.