May 2013 Concert Notes
Fanfare-Rondeau (Queens East and Trinity Florentine)
It’s probably the most famous work by an unknown composer, thanks to PBS adopting this work as the theme for its Masterpiece Theatre. An entire generation has grown up hearing this tune every Sunday night. It quickly became a popular alternative wedding processional for those not wanting to use the wedding music from Wagner’s Lohengrin.
“Fanfare-Rondeau” was, in fact, written by Jean-Joseph Mouret (1682-1738), a French composer whose dramatic works made him one of the leading exponents of Baroque music in his country. Mouret’s father was a prosperous silk merchant of Avignon and an amateur violinist. He recognized his son’s precocious musical abilities and supported his son’s decision to pursue a musical career, which led to a position with the Opera in Paris.
Mouret’s father encouraged his musical career, but this wasn’t the case for many composers. Match the following composers with the careers set out for them by their families.
- Igor Stravinsky
- Hector Berlioz
- Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
- Naval officer
See the Carnegie Hill Program Notes for the answer.
Answer to Carnegie Hill Trivia Question: 3
January 2013 Concert Notes
Radetzky March by Johann Strauss Sr.
So many Strausses, so many waltzes. Who wrote what? Johann Strauss Sr., whose Radetzky March will be performed by the combined forces of the Morningside, Queens East, Trinity Florentine, and Turtle Bay Orchestras, was the father of Johann Jr., who was known as The Waltz King and the composer of the popular opera Die Fledermaus. There was even a less famous Johann III! (Note: The other famous Strauss (Richard) was German, not Austrian, and not related to the waltz composers.)
The Radetzky March, Op. 228, was composed in 1848 and dedicated to the Austrian Field Marshal Joseph Radetzky von Radetz. It became a popular march among soldiers, whose singing of a popular song “Old Dance of Vienna” inspired Strauss to write this march, using that tune in his march’s chorus. When it was first played in front of Austrian officers they started clapping and stamping their feet when they heard the chorus. This tradition is kept alive today when the march is played in Vienna, including in the annual New Year’s Day Concert that is broadcast internationally.
Hear the incomparable Vienna Philharmonic perform the march at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHFf7NIwOHQ
Which of the following is not a type of waltz?
See the Concert Orchestra Program Notes page for the answer.
Answer to the Concert Orchestra Trivia Quiz: Verdi and Wagner