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Alan Gilbert, Wynton Marsalis, and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra
This concert is now past.
Location: Avery Fisher Hall  (Directions)
Price Range: $30.00 - $140.00
 
Fri, May, 31, 2013
11:00 AM
 
Sat, Jun, 1, 2013
8:00 PM
Wynton Marsalis

Program

  (Click the red play button to listen)
IGOR STRAVINSKY (1882-1971)
Ragtime for 11 Instruments (1917-1918)


An "essay in jazz portraiture" — that's what Igor Stravinsky called his compact, witty homage to that jazzy genre, ragtime. Jazz was all the rage in Paris in the early part of the 20th century when he wrote it. According to her article "Stravinsky and Ragtime," Barbara Heyman writes that when conductor Ernest Ansermet returned from the Russian Ballet's second American tour in 1918 he presented Stravinsky with a "bundle of ragtime music in the form of piano reductions and instrumental parts," which the composer then copied out. He had also become acquainted with the cimbalom (a central European folk instrument, sometimes called a hammered dulcimer that the listener might recall hearing in Zoltán Kodály's Hári János). The "bundle" became the inspiration for L'histoire du soldat, which includes a section called "Ragtime," and the present piece of the same name for 11 instruments: flute, clarinet, two horns, trombone, percussion, two violins, viola, double bass, and the featured cimbalom. Full of syncopations against a steady 4/4 pulse, the piece keeps us slightly off-kilter with its marvelous, typically Stravinskian wind harmonies and punctuations by a variety of percussion instruments. Ragtime lends itself quite naturally to being choreographed, and George Balanchine set a ballet on the work in 1966. Its infectious rhythm is bound to make it hard to sit still in your seat at Avery Fisher Hall.
DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH (1906–1975)
Tahiti Trot (Tea for Two), Op. 16 (1927)

“Tea for Two,” a song from Vincent Youmans’s musical No, No, Nanette: how harmful could that be to the nascent Soviet Union? Apparently enough to chastise Dmitri Shostakovich for his decadent, capitalist orchestration of it. It all started out as a bet proposed by conductor Nikolai Malko (the man who premiered Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 1). The composer and the conductor had heard a recording of the song, and according to his Reminiscences, Malko said: “Well, Mitenka, if you really have as much genius as they say, I give you one hour to go into the next room, put this little piece down on paper and orchestrate it for me to play.” (Shostakovich had great sight-reading abilities, as well as a reputation for excellent memory when it came to music.) Malko bet Shostakovich 100 rubles. But to Malko’s great surprise, Shostakovich did it in 45 minutes. Tahiti Trot, Op. 16 was premiered in Moscow by the Leningrad Philharmonic in late 1928 and became a hit with audiences, dance bands, and as a popular encore. Shostakovich must have liked it too, as he used it — with small changes to the orchestration — as an entr’acte at the beginning of Act III for his 1929–30 ballet The Age of Gold, Op. 22. The composer had a lot of fun with the piece, excelling at parody in his music. Tahiti Trot opens grandly — out of all proportion with the original song—and Shostakovich’s score features a rich and colorful array of instruments, including orchestra bells, harp, celesta, and ultra-romantic strings. Tahiti Trot sports wonderful brass riffs, glissandos, and horn calls, sparkling throughout its brief four minutes or so. As for its name? Tahiti Trot is how the original tune was known in the Soviet Union. 
Clarinet Concerto
AARON COPLAND (1900-1990)
Clarinet Concerto (1947-1948)

No stranger to the classical repertoire, "the King of Swing" Benny Goodman commissioned Aaron Copland to compose a clarinet concerto at a time when big band jazz was in decline. (The jazz legend also asked Béla Bartók, Darius Milhaud, and Paul Hindemith to create works for him, but only the latter obliged.) Copland took on the task and provided brief characterizations of each section of the concerto, consisting of two contrasting movements linked by a cadenza and played without pause. The first movement is "lyrical and expressive. The cadenza that follows — a soliloquy for the clarinet — provides the soloist with considerable opportunity to demonstrate his prowess ..." This middle "movement," which links the other two is a mere two-and-a-half minutes long and foreshadows material yet to come. The finale, marked simply "Rather fast," is in the form of "a free rondo ... an unconscious fusion of North and South American popular music." (Listen here for boogie-woogie rhythms, the Charleston, and Brazilian folk tunes.) "The instrumentation being clarinet with strings, harp, and piano, I did not have a large battery of percussion to achieve jazzy effects, so I used slapping basses and whacking harp sounds to simulate them ... the decision to use jazz materials was mine, inspired, of course, by Goodman's playing. Although I didn't mention this to him, I was certain that he would approve." While it remains firmly and unmistakably Coplandesque, the concerto does bear the imprint of the composer's South American sojourn, where he was touring and composing. Goodman, though an accomplished clarinetist, expressed concern over rhythmic and range difficulties — much of the concerto is set in the upper register of the instrument; and even though Copland revised it, Goodman did not premiere the concerto until 1950, performing it with the NBC Symphony Orchestra under Fritz Reiner. (Pop culture fun fact: The Clarinet Concerto is featured throughout Ken Burn's PBS film, The War, a documentary about World War II.)
Swing Symphony (Symphony No. 3)
WYNTON MARSALIS (b. 1961)
Swing Symphony (Symphony No. 3) (2010)

About the U.S. premiere of Wynton Marsalis's Symphony No. 3 The New York Times wrote: "Mr. Gilbert seemed totally in his element, conducting with a mix of cool command and jazzy swing. The Philharmonic players should be proud. They played with verve and color, never sounding like classical music stiffs. I have never seen so many people at a Philharmonic concert tapping their feet and hands." Wynton Marsalis returns to the New York Philharmonic with his Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra for an encore performance of the Swing Symphony, first heard on opening night of the 2010 season. Co-commissioned by the Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, London Symphony Orchestra, and Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Third Symphony is "a symphonic meditation on the evolution of swing," according to the composer, the most acclaimed jazz musician and composer of his generation and a distinguished classical performer. By force of personality, intelligence, and achievement he has brought jazz back to center stage in American culture. Wynton Marsalis is Juilliard-educated and the first jazz composer ever to earn a Pulitzer Prize. He serves as Artistic Director for the internationally recognized Jazz at Lincoln Center program, which he co-founded in 1987. Under his leadership, the Jazz Department earned the distinction of being named Lincoln Center's first new constituent since 1969, and his music — whether as composer or arranger — has been heard on many occasions at Avery Fisher Hall. He was also the delightful host for Ken Burns's acclaimed 10-part documentary, Jazz, on PBS in 2001. Wynton Marsalis's large-scale work for full symphony and jazz orchestras exploits the rhythmic potentialities of these powerful ensembles in a galvanizing fusion of traditions. From the marching cadences of New Orleans to the softer sounds of brasses and woodwinds intoning a hymn-like melody, the Swing Symphony invites the audience to tap their feet to America's classical music.

Artists

Alan Gilbert

New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert began his tenure in September 2009. The first native New Yorker to hold the post, he has sought to make the Orchestra a point of pride for the city and country. “He is building a legacy that matters and is helping to change the template for what an American orchestra can be,” The New York Times praised.

Mr. Gilbert and the Philharmonic have forged artistic partnerships, introducing the positions of The Marie-Josée Kravis Composer-in-Residence and The Mary and James G. Wallach Artist-in-Residence, held in the 2013–14 season by Christopher Rouse and pianist Yefim Bronfman, respectively; an annual festival, which this season is The Beethoven Piano Concertos; CONTACT!, the new-music series, extending its reach this season with more concerts in new venues across the city; and, beginning in the spring of 2014, the NY PHIL BIENNIAL, an exploration of today’s music by a wide range of contemporary and modern composers.

In the 2013–14 season Alan Gilbert conducts Mozart’s three final symphonies; the score from 2001: A Space Odyssey as the film is screened, as part of THE ART OF THE SCORE: Film Week at the Philharmonic; the U.S. Premiere of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s Frieze coupled with Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony; world premieres; an all-Britten program celebrating the composer’s centennial; and a staged production of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd starring Bryn Terfel and Emma Thompson. He also continues The Nielsen Project, the multi-year initiative to perform and record the Danish composer’s symphonies and concertos, the first release of which was named by The New York Times as among the Best Classical Music Recordings of 2012. The Music Director will preside over the ASIA / WINTER 2014 tour, with stops including Tokyo and Seoul, featuring Artist-in-Residence Yefim Bronfman performing Magnus Lindberg’s Piano Concerto No. 2, Composer-in-Residence Christopher Rouse’s Rapture, and Alan Gilbert narrating Britten’s The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra in Japanese at a Young People’s Concert in Tokyo.

Last season’s highlights included Bach’s B-minor Mass and Ives’s Fourth Symphony, and, during the EUROPE / SPRING 2013 tour, participating in the Vienna Konzerthaus’s centennial and performing Lindberg’s Kraft and Rouse’s Prospero’s Rooms at the Volkswagen Transparent Factory. The season concluded with A Dancer’s Dream, a multidisciplinary reimagining of Stravinsky’s The Fairy’s Kiss and Petrushka, created by Giants Are Small and starring New York City Ballet principal dancer Sara Mearns.

High points of Mr. Gilbert’s first three Philharmonic seasons included the critically celebrated productions of Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre (2010) and Janácek’s Cunning Little Vixen (2011) — both cited as the top cultural events of their respective years — and Philharmonic 360 (2012), the acclaimed spatial music program featuring Stockhausen’s Gruppen.  Other highlights include World Premieres of works by Magnus Lindberg, John Corigliano, Christopher Rouse, and composers featured on CONTACT!; Mahler’s Second Symphony, Resurrection, on A Concert for New York on September 10; Mr. Gilbert’s Philharmonic debut as violin soloist in J.S. Bach’s Concerto for Two Violins; five concerts at Carnegie Hall; five tours to Europe; and the Asia Horizons tour.

In September 2011 Alan Gilbert became Director of Conducting and Orchestral Studies at The Juilliard School, where he is also the first holder of Juilliard’s William Schuman Chair in Musical Studies. Conductor laureate of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and principal guest conductor of Hamburg’s NDR Symphony Orchestra, he regularly conducts leading orchestras nationally and internationally, such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and the Berlin Philharmonic. His 2013–14 season engagements include appearances with the Berlin Philharmonic, Juilliard Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, Munich Philharmonic, NDR Symphony Orchestra, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, and Orchestre National de Lyon.

Alan Gilbert made his acclaimed Metropolitan Opera debut in 2008 leading John Adams’s Doctor Atomic; the DVD and Blu-ray of this production received the 2012 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording. Renée Fleming’s recent Decca recording Poèmes, on which he conducted, received a 2013 Grammy Award. Earlier releases garnered Grammy Award nominations and top honors from the Chicago Tribune and Gramophone magazine.

Mr. Gilbert studied at Harvard University, The Curtis Institute of Music, and Juilliard and was assistant conductor of The Cleveland Orchestra (1995–97). In May 2010 he received an Honorary Doctor of Music degree from Curtis, and in December 2011 he received Columbia University’s Ditson Conductor’s Award for his “exceptional commitment to the performance of works by American composers and to contemporary music.”

Visit Alan Gilbert's Official Website

Case Scaglione

American conductor Case Scaglione began his tenure as Assistant Conductor of the New York Philharmonic in September 2011, and subsequently made his subscription debut with the Orchestra in November 2012, stepping in for Kurt Masur. He has appeared as a guest conductor with the orchestras of Cleveland, St. Louis, Baltimore, Houston, and Jacksonville, and others. In September 2013 he assisted Sir Andrew Davis on R. Strauss’s Elektra at Chicago’s Lyric Opera.

During the 2013–14 season Mr. Scaglione makes debuts with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, Colorado and Santa Fe Symphonies, and the Orchestra of St. Luke's, in addition to return appearances with the Alabama Symphony Orchestra and Las Vegas Philharmonic. 

Following successful engagements in the summer of 2013 with the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra, China Philharmonic Orchestra, and Shanghai Symphony, Mr. Scaglione returns to China this season to conduct both the China Philharmonic Orchestra and the Shanghai Symphony. He will also travel to Madrid to conduct Bach’s Mass in B minor with the Orquesta Clásica Santa Cecilia.

Mr. Scaglione was music director of the Young Musicians Foundation Debut Orchestra of Los Angeles from 2008 to 2011, in addition to founding its 360° Music, an educational outreach program that brought the orchestra to inner-city schools.  His programming spanned works from Ligeti to Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde — the orchestra’s first staged opera in nearly 60 years — to the Los Angeles premiere of John Adams’s Doctor Atomic Symphony.

In 2011 Mr. Scaglione was the recipient of the Conductor’s Prize from the Solti Foundation U.S. — an honor that has been awarded only three times in the foundation’s history. He was a student of David Zinman at the American Academy of Conducting in Aspen, where he won the James Conlon Prize and, in 2010, the Aspen Conducting Prize. Mr. Scaglione subsequently served as assistant conductor of the Aspen Music Festival and School, leading a wide range of performances and serving as a cover conductor for all orchestral concerts. He was one of three Conducting Fellows at Tanglewood in 2011, chosen by James Levine and Stefan Asbury.

Mr. Scaglione, a Texas native, received his bachelor’s degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music. His postgraduate studies were spent at the Peabody Institute, where he studied with Gustav Meier. 


E-Flat Clarinet, Clarinet
Mark Nuccio

Mark Nuccio joined the New York Philharmonic in 1999 as Associate Principal and Solo E-flat Clarinet. He previously held positions with orchestras in Pittsburgh, Denver, Savannah, and Florida. He has worked with distinguished conductors such as Lorin Maazel, Kurt Masur, Mariss Jansons, Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti, Erich Leinsdorf, Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Chailly, André Previn, Christoph von Dohnányi, and Gustavo Dudamel. Additionally, Mr. Nuccio has toured with both the New York Philharmonic and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra to numerous countries, recorded with both orchestras, and performed with the Philharmonic on the award-winning series, Live From Lincoln Center, broadcast on PBS. A recent New York Philharmonic tour included a historic visit to North Korea — an event watched around the world.

An active solo and chamber musician, Mark Nuccio has been the featured performer with several orchestras in the United States and on numerous occasions at the International Clarinet Association conventions. He made his New York recital debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall in 2001, his Japan recital debut in 2002, and he now regularly performs in recital in the Far East and Europe, as well as across the U.S. In New York, he often can be heard at Merkin Concert Hall, the 92nd Street Y, Carnegie Hall, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Mr. Nuccio is also a member of the Philharmonic Quintet of New York (PQNY) — a group of five woodwind players from the New York Philharmonic. Since its inception, in 2001, the PQNY has performed across the globe. During summers, Mr. Nuccio performs chamber music at the Strings in the Mountain Music Festival in Steamboat, Colorado.

As a studio musician, Mr. Nuccio is featured on several movie soundtracks, including Failure to Launch, The Last Holiday, The Rookie, The Score, Intolerable Cruelty, Alamo, Pooh’s Heffalump, Hitch, The Manchurian Candidate, and numerous television commercials. He also performed on the Late Show with David Letterman as well as on the 2003 Grammy Awards.

In November 2006, Mr. Nuccio’s first CD, Opening Night,featuring the clarinet quintets of Mozart and Brahms, was released, and is available at dorian.com as well as on iTunes and amazon.com.

A Colorado native, Mark Nuccio holds a master’s degree from Northwestern University, where he studied with the renowned pedagogue Robert Marcellus. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Northern Colorado.

Beyond his active performing schedule, Mr. Nuccio is committed to training the next generation of musicians. He currently serves on the faculty of the Manhattan School of Music in New York City and teaches master classes in the U.S. and abroad. Mr. Nuccio is a Rico advising artist and clinician as well as an artist/clinician for Buffet Crampon, and performs exclusively on Buffet clarinets.

Composer, Conductor, Trumpet
Wynton Marsalis by Clay Patrick McBride

Wynton Marsalis is music director and trumpet of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, and managing and artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center. Born in New Orleans in 1961, he began his classical training on trumpet at age 12 and soon began playing in local bands. He entered The Juilliard School at age 17, and joined Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers. Mr. Marsalis made his recording debut as a leader in 1982, and has since recorded more than 70 jazz and classical albums, which have garnered him nine Grammy Awards. In 1983 he became the first and only artist to win classical and jazz Grammys in the same year, a feat he repeated in 1984.

Mr. Marsalis’s compositions include Sweet Release; Jazz: Six Syncopated Movements; Jump Start and Jazz; Citi Movement/Griot New York; At the Octoroon Balls; In This House, On This Morning; and Big Train. In 1997 he won the Pulitzer Prize in music for his oratorio Blood on the Fields, which was commissioned by Jazz at Lincoln Center. That same year he premiered the monumental work All Rise, commissioned and performed by the New York Philharmonic along with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and the Morgan State University Choir. Mr. Marsalis’s second symphony, Blues Symphony, was premiered in 2009 by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and by the Boston Symphony Orchestra in 2010. That same year, Mr. Marsalis premiered Swing Symphony (Symphony No. 3), a co-commission by the New York Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and The Barbican Centre. The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis performed the piece with the Berlin Philharmonic in Berlin and the New York Philharmonic in New York City in 2010, the Los Angeles Philharmonic in Los Angeles in 2011, and the London Symphony Orchestra in London in 2012.

Wynton Marsalis is an internationally respected teacher and spokesman for music education, and has received honorary doctorates from dozens of universities and colleges throughout the U.S. He conducts educational programs for students of all ages and hosts the popular Jazz for Young People concerts produced by Jazz at Lincoln Center. He led the effort to construct Jazz at Lincoln Center’s new home, Frederick P. Rose Hall (which opened in October 2004), the first education, performance, and broadcast facility devoted to jazz. In 2009 Mr. Marsalis was awarded France’s Legion of Honor, the highest honor bestowed by the French government.

The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra (JLCO), comprising 15 of the finest jazz soloists and ensemble players today, has been the Jazz at Lincoln Center resident orchestra since 1988. It performs and leads educational events in New York, across the U.S., and around the globe; in concert halls, dance venues, jazz clubs, and public parks; and with symphony orchestras, ballet troupes, local students, and an ever-expanding roster of guest artists. These programs reach more than 110,000 students, teachers, and general audience members. Under music director Wynton Marsalis, the JLCO performs pieces ranging from rare historic compositions to JALC-commissioned compositions and arrangements by musicians including Benny Carter, Wayne Shorter, and Joe Lovano. The JLCO has also collaborated with the Russian National Orchestra; the Boston, Chicago, and London symphony orchestras; and the Orchestra Esperimentale in São Paolo, Brazil. Fourteen recordings featuring the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis have been released internationally.

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Concert Duration

1 hour 45 minutes

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