The Adelaide Festival Centre and The Adelaide Symphony Orchestra will combine across two nights on Friday May 31 and Saturday June 1 at 8pm in a performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 in D minor as part of the commemoration events for the AFC’s 40th Anniversary.
Arvo Volmer, the ASO’s Chief Conductor, will direct this concert – which was also performed on The Festival Theatre’s grand opening on 2nd June 1973.
Fittingly Opus 125 in Beethoven’s symphony, sometimes referred to as simply Choral marked the first time a major composer incorporated voices into a symphonic work and with such effect the total is generally considered Beethoven’s greatest work, certainly the most played, and the final movement (inspired by the Friedrich Schiller poem) Ode to Joy is possibly the best known with it’s elevated celebration of hope and human unity.
Some critics laud this symphony the best music ever written. It enjoys prominence around the world including official use as the anthem of the European Union while the original script, housed in the Berlin Library, was the first musical script to be added to the United Nations World Heritage List. It was also Beethoven’s last symphony.
[pull_left]Volmer himself has stated “The Ninth carries a message of humanity and hope, mixing poetry and music in a totally new way. It represents Beethoven’s symphonic writing at its peak.”[/pull_left]
Volmer himself has stated “The Ninth carries a message of humanity and hope, mixing poetry and music in a totally new way. It represents Beethoven’s symphonic writing at its peak.” The choir this year features Soprano Sara Macliver, Mezzo Soprano Sally-Anne Russell, Tenor Paul McMahon and Bass Stephen Bennett performing with The Adelaide Symphony Chorus.
The concert includes the AFC commissioned World Premiere of Fanfare Festiva – a fanfare for the next 40 years by award-winning Adelaide born composer Graeme Koehne. He also attended the 1973 opening as a 16-year-old and states “Writing the fanfare is particularly meaningful, because that opening concert happened just when I was beginning to immerse myself in classical music, seeing the concert was instrumental in my choice of career. I remember hearing the fanfare composed by Richard Meale who later was to become my composition teacher”. That was during Koehne’s time as a student at the Elder Conservatorium of Music at the University of Adelaide. In 1984 Koehne was awarded a Harkness Fellowship and studied at Yale University’s School of Music with teachers Louis Andriessen and Jacob Druckman. During this time in America Koehne took the opportunity to take private lessons, for two years, with Virgil Thomson in New York. He returned home to be appointed Lecturer in Composition at the Elder Conservatorium.
Events for the AFC’s 40th Anniversary continue throughout the year. For more information visit: www.adelaidefestivalcentre.com.au