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A Coastal Awakening weekend – Concerts on Saturday, Nov. 17 and Sunday, Nov. 18


 Saturday at 7:30 pm, Performing Arts Center San Luis Obispo

W.A. Mozart,  Te Deum laudamus, K.141  –  Craig Russell, Wings of Bliss  –  Ralph Vaughan Williams, A Lark Ascending  

Lou Harrison, Lo Koro Sutro (The Heart Sutra), For Chorus and American Gamelan (Old Granddad)

 

 

Lou Harrison (Photo Eva Soltes)

La Koro Sutro

Lou Harrison’s exposure to the philosophies of Buddhism came largely during his travels through Asia during the 1960s, but his interest in Non-western music dates back at least to 1934, when he enrolled in composer Henry Cowell’s class titled “Music of the Peoples of the World.” Through Cowell, Harrison also met John Cage, and Cowell encouraged them both to seek out new sources of musical sounds – and thus flowerpots, brake drums, and metal pipes appeared in the scores of Harrison’s compositions. Harrison merged these two interests – non-western music and new sound sources –  when he built his first “American Gamelan” in partnership with William Colvig. Harrison and Colvig’s “Old Grand-Dad” American Gamelan was constructed for the premiere of La Koro Sutro.

San Luis Obispo Master Chorale will use “Old Granddad #4,” which is being transported from Cambridge, Massachusetts for the concerts on Nov. 17 & 18. Old Grandad #4 is a collection of specific percussion pieces comprised of instruments with tuned metal tubes, tuned keys, pitched key-gongs, metal gas tanks of various sizes, several large metal triangles, and two large tuned metal cans, bells and mallets.  

 

 

Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in Verona, 1770

 

Te Deum laudamus, K.141

The Te Deum, composed at the age of 13 while Mozart was still under the tutelage of his father Leopold and of Kappelmeister Michael Haydn, gives expression to the rapidly developing and even advanced scope of his genius. Obviously dependent on a similar work of Michael Haydn, as one might expect from a dedicated apprentice, Mozart’s Te Deum only achieved unhesitating agreement on its authenticity when, some years ago, authentic performing parts were discovered.

 Mozart’s respected biographer, Alfred Einstein, judges this Te Deum to be “sure in construction, enchanting in its choral declamation, possessing a certain rustic South German grandeur even in the closing double fugue.” It marks “a good finish to Mozart’s activities as a composer of church music before leaving his native Salzburg on his extended and instructive Italian journeys.”

 

Craig Russell

Craig Russell composes lyrical, flowing music to a love poem written by Mark Lloyd Richardson, dedicated to his wife, Dallis. Originally for chorus, piano, and violin, Craig Russell has orchestrated the work for performance by the San Luis Obispo Master Chorale.

 

Ralph Vayghan Williams

Ralph Vaughan Williams

Concertmaster Brynn Albanese and members of the San Luis Obispo Master Chorale Orchestra play one of Vaughan Williams’s most enduring popular works. Wings of Bliss and The Lark Ascending come from the same mold!

Vaughan Williams never discussed what had motivated him to write The Lark Ascending, but his inspiration—and the source of his title—was an 1883 poem by English writer George Meredith. Vaughan Williams quoted the following lines at the start of his score:

He rises and begins to round, 
He drops the silver chain of sound,
Of many links without a break,
In chirrup, whistle, slur and shake. 

For singing till his heaven fills,
’Tis love of earth that he instils,
And ever winging up and up,
Our valley is his golden cup,
And he the wine which overflows
To lift us with him as he goes: 

Till lost on his aërial rings
In light, and then the fancy sings. 

 

Glad to see that they are doing this! Go and hear this….. It’s wonderful!

Nancy Boyle comments on Itaipú

A fabulous performance. Our family really enjoyed the San Luis Obispo Master Chorale. Sweet music to our ears!

- Meeker Family, Arroyo Grande


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