On The Town
June 16, 2018 @ 7:30 pm -9:00 pm
The final concert of our season at BelPres draws on music inspired by the activities that bring us joy. Bernstein’s work, “On the Town” depicts three sailors on shore leave in New York City. Judith Bingham’s Four Minute Mile bears the tempo marking,“Sprinting away with great vigor” and courses with muscular, rhythmic drive.
Describing Derek Bougeois’s work, conductor Tim Reynish writes, “One of his most successful works for me is Diversions. In three movements, the first and third bright and breezy with great use of syncopation and mixed metres, the middle slow and lyrical, this thirteen minute work shows Derek’s music perhaps at its best, very approachable, a challenge but eminently playable, deserving of more performances than it gets at present.”
This season we have celebrated the centenary of the birth of Leonard Bernstein and included his music on most of our programs. We opened our season in October with Shivaree (1970), a short fanfare that Bernstein composed in honor of the 100th anniversary of the Metropolitan Museum in New York and later repurposed in Mass. Our May program included a movement of his charming Chichester Psalms (1965), originally for chorus and orchestra and in June we present “Three Dances from On The Town” (1947).
In many ways Bernstein personified American music in the twentieth century performing at the highest levels as pianist, conductor, composer and educator. He is perhaps most remembered as music director of the New York Philharmonic—especially his performances for the Young People’s Concerts—and as the composer of West Side Story.
As a composer, he was active in the concert hall—three symphonies, three operas (Trouble in Tahiti, Candide, and A Quiet Place) and three ballets (Fancy Free, Facsimile, and Dybbuk,) among numerous other works, but was perhaps most successful on Broadway with On the Town, Wonderful Town and especially West Side Story.
Bingham: Four Minute Mile (3:30)
Arnold: Fantasy for Brass (9:40)
Bernstein: Three Dances from “On the Town” (12:00)
Bougeois: Diversions for Brass Band (13:15)
Gershwin: Cuban Overture (10:30)