A Celebration of Nature and Dance in “Beethoven’s Pastoral,” Jan. 8 & 9
December 14, 2015
Grand Rapids Symphony
616.454.9451 x 110
Grand Rapids Symphony will explore the intersection of nature and dance this
upcoming January at “Beethoven’s Pastoral,” Friday, January 8 and Saturday,
January 9, 8:00 p.m. at DeVos Performance Hall. The concert showcases the
creativity of dancing as the music of three composers use dance to move our
hearts and our feet. Beethoven’s most genial symphony, his “Pastoral,” will be accompanied
by a charming Spanish concerto, performed by one of the world’s leading
classical guitarists, Pablo Villegas. An energetic contemporary dance piece by
Mexican composer Arturo Márquez will also be featured. Music Director Candidate
and current Music Director of the Amarillo Symphony Jacomo Bairos will lead the
orchestra. “Beethoven’s Pastoral” is part of the Richard and Helen DeVos
Classical Series. The Guest Artist Sponsor for the concert is the Edith I.
Blodgett Guest Artist Fund.
concert begins with Beethoven’s masterpiece, “Symphony No. 6, ‘Pastoral.’” Unlike
his Fifth Symphony—an epic musical journey about man’s triumph over fate—Beethoven’s
Sixth omits drama and tension. Instead, it is a gentle and happy ode to the
composer’s love of nature. Listening to the first and second movements of the work,
one can imagine Beethoven during his one of his routine walks through the
Viennese countryside, admiring the picturesque charm of the scenery and
choruses of birds. After a merry folk dance in the third movement, Beethoven’s
tempestuous personality makes a brief appearance in the fourth movement, “Thunderstorm,”
before the happy music returns to conclude the piece.
on the program is the zesty, dance-filled concerto “Fantasia para un
Gentilhombre” or “Fantasy for a Gentleman.” The piece is based entirely on
dances by the baroque composer Gaspar Sanz, and mixes the melodies with
colorful orchestrations. The great modern guitar virtuoso Andrés Segovia both
inspired and performed the piece written by Spanish composer Joaquin Rodrigo. It
is fitting that Pablo Villegas, considered to be the privileged successor of
Segovia, should perform the piece with the Grand Rapids Symphony at DeVos Hall.
concert will conclude with “Danzón No. 2,” one of the most popular and
frequently performed Mexican contemporary classical orchestral pieces.
Originating in Cuba, the Danzón dance form is a very important part of the
folklore of the Mexican state of Veracruz, where the composer received his
inspiration while visiting a ballroom.
a free pre-concert multi-media presentation, will be hosted in the Recital Hall
before each performance at 7:00 p.m. Upbeat is sponsored by BDO USA.
Pastoral” will be rebroadcast on Sunday, April 10 at 1:00 p.m. on Blue Lake
Public Radio, FM 88.9 or FM 90.3.
Tickets start at $18 and are available at the Symphony office, weekdays 9 a.m.
to 5 p.m., 300 Ottawa NW, Suite 100, (located across from the Calder Plaza), or
by calling 616.454.9451 x 4. (Phone orders will be charged a $2 per ticket
service fee, with a $12 maximum.) Tickets are available at the DeVos Place Box
Office, weekdays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., or on the day of the concert beginning two
hours prior to the performance. Tickets may also be purchased through
Ticketmaster, 800.982.2787, online at GRSymphony.org or in person at
Ticketmaster outlets: select D&W Fresh Markets, Family Fare Stores and
Walmart. Tickets purchased at these locations will include a Ticketmaster
service fee. Full-time
students of any age are able to purchase tickets for only $5 on the night of
the concert by enrolling in the Symphony’s Student Passport program. This is a
MySymphony360 eligible concert.
About the Grand Rapids Symphony
Grand Rapids Symphony was officially organized in 1930 and is nationally
recognized for the quality of its concerts and educational programs. Led by
Music Advisor Larry Rachleff, Principal Pops Conductor Bob Bernhardt and Associate
Conductor John Varineau, nine concert series are presented, featuring a wide
range of music and performance styles. More than 400 performances are presented
each year, touching the lives of some 200,000. Nearly half of those who benefit
are students, senior citizens and people with disabilities reached through
extensive education and community service programs. The Symphony’s Affiliated
Organizations include the Grand Rapids Bach Festival, Grand Rapids Symphony
Chorus, Grand Rapids Youth Symphony and Classical Orchestra, and Grand Rapids
Symphony Youth Choruses. The Symphony also provides the orchestra for Opera
Grand Rapids and the Grand Rapids Ballet Company. To learn more about the Grand
Rapids Symphony please visit GRSymphony.org.
This activity is supported in part by an award from the Michigan
Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.