BELATED BEETHOVEN BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION

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Transcript of BELATED BEETHOVEN BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION

Saturday, May 1, 2021 Performance # 167 Season 6, Concert 15
Livestreamed from the Fisher Center at Bard Sosnoff Theater
Leon Botstein conductor
theorchestranow.org/support
8 THE MUSIC
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN
28 THE ADMINISTRATION
CONCERT TIMELINE 2 hours
Triple Concerto 35 min

Brief remarks by Ian Striedter trombone
SYMPHONY NO. 5 Allegro con brio (fast, with spirit) 8 min
Andante con moto (moderately slow, with motion) 10 min Allegro (fast) 5 min
Allegro (fast) 10 min no pause between third and fourth movements
Written 1804–08, in Beethoven’s mid 30s
Premiered 12/22/1808 at Theater an der Wien in Vienna;
Beethoven conductor
First TN Performance 1/29/2016 at Carnegie Hall in NYC; Leon Botstein conductor
Brief remarks by Samuel Exline trumpet
TRIPLE CONCERTO Allegro (fast) 17 min
Largo (slow & dignified) 5 min Rondo alla Polacca (in the rhythm of a polonaise) 13 min
no pause between second and third movements
ADELE ANTHONY violin PETER WILEY cello
SHAI WOSNER piano
Premiered 4/1808 in Leipzig
Brief remarks by Leanna Ginsburg flute
SYMPHONY NO. 7 Poco sostenuto—Vivace
(a little sustained, then lively) 13 min Allegretto (moderately fast) 9 min
Presto (quickly) 9 min Allegro con brio (fast, with spirit) 7 min
Written 1811–12, at age 41
Premiered 12/8/1813 at the University of Vienna; Beethoven
conductor
First TN Performance 4/13/2019 at Olin Hall at Bard College;
Zachary Schwartzman conductor
All timings are approximate. | Composer artwork by Khoa Doan.
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN Born c. 12/16/1770 in Bonn, Germany Died 3/26/1827 at age 56 in Vienna
THEORCHESTRANOW.ORG / 76 / MAY 2021
This concert is dedicated to the memory of STUART STRITZLER-LEVINE 1932–2020
A MAN OF STATURE, AND LOFTY IDEALS by James Rodewald ’82 originally appeared in the Fall 2020 issue of the Bardian
Stuart Stritzler-Levine, 87, professor emeritus of psychology and dean emeritus, died May 1, 2020. Stritzler- Levine, who joined the Bard faculty in 1964 and devoted 56 years of continuous service to the College, received his B.A. from New York University, M.A. from New School University, and Ph.D. from SUNY Albany. Before coming to Bard he was a clinical research psychologist at Philadelphia State Hospital, where he worked in a National Institute of
Mental Health project designed to rehabilitate patients with chronic mental illness. He also served as a clinical psychologist at Bordentown Reformatory in New Jersey. His teaching and research interests at Bard included social psychology, specifically obedience to authority, conformity, attitude measurement, and change; moral development; and experimental design. He was fascinated by the social psychologist Stanley Milgram, on whose work and legacy he was teaching a seminar in the Spring 2020 semester. “No one has worked as tirelessly and generously for Bard as Stuart did,” writes President Leon Botstein. “He loved the College, its mission, its people, its history, and its landscape. He was fastidious and disciplined, yet he made the time not only to work unstintingly but also to sit and talk with everyone, anytime.”
Stritzler-Levine was dean of the College from 1980 to 2001. In those 21 years he oversaw innovations in the admission process, particularly the Immediate Decision Plan; the rapid growth of Bard’s enrollment and curriculum; and the College’s expansion into graduate education. He served as Dean of Studies at Bard High School Early College Manhattan from 2003 to 2009, then returned to teaching at Bard and at Simon’s Rock. Botstein writes, “He died in active service, not retired, as was his dream.”
Even while fully occupied by his duties at the College, Stritzler-Levine worked to extend liberal arts and sciences education to underserved communities. In 1999, he proposed a “bridge course” to expand the original
Clemente Course, which was entering its fifth year of offering rigorous, university-level humanities instruction to low-income students. His recognition that some who had completed the course but not been able to go on to college would benefit from additional study led him to offer to design and teach this bridge course once a week. He did so without pay. His devotion to learning and to Bard students had no limits. He was legendary as a Senior Project adviser. Tom Maiello ’82, a former advisee, shares that Stritzler- Levine, knowing Maiello could not afford to continue his education after Bard, paid for his first post-graduate program. Maiello retired in 2013 after nearly 33 years as a director of admissions, Holocaust educator, adjunct professor of philosophy, and dean of admissions. Last year he went back to work. “I am in social services as part of a skilled health care team,” writes Maiello. “I dedicate it all to him and his being there at the right time.”
Kenneth Stern ’75, director of Bard’s Center for Hate Studies, has had a long relationship with Stritzler-Levine, starting as a student and more recently as a colleague. “Stuart and I spoke frequently over the years, often about hate, especially given his expertise about Stanley Milgram,” writes Stern. “Stuart was always fascinated with the world around him, and how to think about it. He was an eager supporter of the Center for Hate Studies (he and I had brainstormed about this idea for years) and a regular participant in the faculty reading group on hate.” Stern also shared a passion for fishing, and the two traded strategies, fish tales, and lures, beginning in Stern’s
undergraduate days. “I moderated in the early ’70s,” recalls Stern. “My board insisted that I take a statistics class, which I did, with Stuart. It was not my favorite subject, but I loved the data set—Stuart’s summer catch of lake trout, which made me jealous of the quantity, length, width, weight, and every other measure of Stuart’s success.”
Stritzler-Levine’s other passions included operas by Richard Wagner, the photography of Berenice Abbott, and sports, particularly basketball. In the mid 1970s, Charlie Patrick, Bard’s athletic director, asked if he would coach the varsity basketball team. Stritzler-Levine accepted and went about putting together a team. Before long, spurred on by “bus loads” of students, as Stritzler-Levine recalled at the 2014 Athletics Awards Banquet, who drove up to Columbia Greene Community College to cheer for Bard against Albany College of Pharmacy, the 1976–77 team came within seconds of a conference title game. “It was a splendid group of guys,” Stritzler-Levine said in 2014. “For a couple of years, or even three, we took ourselves seriously and practiced and learned and had a dress code and all that good stuff that being a team could be. The truth is I loved my squad.” For 56 years and counting, the Bard community has felt the same way about him.
Stuart Stritzler-Levine is survived by his wife, Nina Stritzler-Levine, and their daughter, Ali SR ’15. He is also survived by his daughter Jennifer, and was predeceased by his daughter Jessica ’84, who died in 2010.
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BEETHOVEN’S SYMPHONY NO. 5 Notes by TN bassoonist Philip McNaughton
BEETHOVEN’S TRIPLE CONCERTO Notes by TN trumpet player Maggie Tsan-Jung Wei
An Icon Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, also known as the “Fate Symphony,” is arguably one of the most iconic pieces of classical music in the canon. Its four-note opening motif evokes an immediate reaction from not only the most avid classical music appreciator, but also from someone who has never stepped foot into a concert hall before. It has been played by world-class orchestras in almost every city around the world, and has even been heard in McDonald’s commercials. The work was composed from 1804 to 1808 and was based off of three of Beethoven’s original sketches. The piece premiered in Vienna in 1808 at a momentous all- Beethoven program that is said to have lasted four hours, at which the composer himself conducted and performed on the piano. The work was one of several premieres on the program, including Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony.
Symphony V for Victory The nickname of the symphony, “Fate,” which was not given by Beethoven himself, comes from the four note opening of the piece. The most recognizable portion, “short-short- short-long,” was thought to resemble fate knocking at a subject’s door, and is used as a motif throughout each movement of the work. Because of the symphony’s popularity, the theme was commonly used during the second World War as a way to mark a victory over the radio systems. In Morse code, “short-short-short-long” spelled out the letter “V” for victory. The theme would be played whenever the Allied forces found success in their endeavors. It became a powerful symbol of hope.
A Gateway Work Whether or not Beethoven himself thought of this opening motif as fate knocking on the door remains unclear. What does ring true is that it was fate for this piece to live on forever. I think of this work as a gateway to classical music for the average person. The opening four notes are recognized by practically everyone around the world, but it’s what follows those notes that makes the symphony magical. The opening hooks the audience, but the rest of the piece keeps listeners planted in their seats, amazed at what contemporary and rich stories classical music can paint. The “Fate Symphony” has held the fate of classical music in its hands for centuries, and I believe the piece will continue to be a riveting gateway work for many more centuries to come.
The Background Beethoven’s Triple Concerto in C major, Op. 56, is more similar to a piano trio than a concerto, with the whole orchestra acting as an accompanist to build up texture and add different colors. Most of the time, it is a competition or cooperation among three soloists. The three of them may play against each other, or support each other in different phrases. What makes this piece unique is the instrumentation. Beethoven was successful not only at putting these three solo instruments together in front of a whole orchestra, but also at keeping them balanced. Acting more as partners, the three instruments do not dominate over each other. Even now, it is probably the only well-known triple sonata for these three instruments. However, the work was not as successful as it is now when Beethoven first composed it around the year 1804. It was not officially performed until about four years after it was published. Surprisingly, it did not receive great critiques during the nineteenth century. However, the fact that people are still performing the concerto nowadays proves the value of this piece.
The Music I certainly cannot choose my favorite movement in this concerto. The three movements have their own unique texture and musical language. The first movement is in sonata form, which is one of the most common forms for first movements in symphonies or concertos. It can be separated into three parts based on the motive. In this movement I really enjoy the beginning, when the piece opens with the lower string section, and the rest of the orchestra slowly builds up and introduces the three soloists. The second movement instills a sacred and peaceful feeling in me, almost as if I was standing by myself in the middle of an empty cathedral. The last movement, just like other traditional concertos, is a fast movement. It is joyful and delightful, and also brings back the tension and the cooperation between the three soloists.
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“As a sforzando occurred, he tore his arms with great vehemence asunder . . . at the entrance of a forte he jumped into the air.” So Louis Spohr, the renowned German composer and violinist, described Beethoven’s tempestuous conducting at the premiere of the Seventh Symphony. The occasion was a patriotic one. On December 8, 1813, Spohr, along with a starry group of musicians including Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Antonio Salieri, and Giacomo Meyerbeer, gathered to play in an orchestra led by Beethoven as part of a charity concert for soldiers wounded in the Battle of Hanau. For this event the composer, by then an emphatic critic of the megalomaniacal Napoleon, debuted his Seventh Symphony alongside another new work, Wellington’s Victory, written to commemorate the Duke of Wellington’s defeat of Joseph Bonaparte’s forces in the Battle of Vitoria. Revolutionary Zeal Though the Seventh Symphony does not share the explicit political immediacy of Wellington’s Victory, it is impossible to
dissociate it from Beethoven’s resolute idealism. Even at a time in his career plagued by worsening deafness and dire financial hardship, Beethoven was able to suffuse the work with a palpable sense of revolutionary zeal. As a whole, the symphony is exuberant, grand, and unbridled in its dual capacities for jubilance and sincerity. The first movement begins with a gracefully unfolding oboe solo punctuated by chordal “hits” from the full orchestra. The rest of the poco sostenuto introduction alternates between poised, lilting wind passages and stentorian iterations from the orchestra which, before long, give way to a cheerful vivace permeated by lively dotted rhythms.
Triumph Over Tyranny The second movement, though marked allegretto, is the work’s dramatic zenith. A simple, serious rhythmic theme is introduced by low strings and is soon interwoven with a grave countermelody. These two ideas compete in increasing force as more instruments take them up, building steadily to an intense, climactic scene. This gives way to a dreamlike, yearning middle section, soon interrupted by a re-introduction of the theme. Another climax results, this time texturally enriched by deeper layers of Beethoven’s characteristically masterful counterpoint. In the third movement, a rollicking presto, fleet, playful wind solos are heard among bombastic, high- spirited dance episodes. The spectacle is occasionally curtailed by the emergence of an unhurried, stately theme. Finally, the fourth movement arrives to declare victory. Beethoven, the revolutionary, has had an ecstatic vision of mankind’s final triumph over tyranny.
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THE BEETHOVEN CELEBRATION CONTINUES NEXT SATURDAY! Saturday, May 8 at 8 PM
Bard College Conservatory Orchestra
Leon Botstein conductor
Ludwig van Beethoven Symphony No. 4 Wellington’s Victory Symphony No. 3, Eroica Drei Equali (Three Equals) for four trombones
RSVP at FISHERCENTER.BARD.EDU
THEORCHESTRANOW.ORG / 1312 / MAY 2021
Leon Botstein brings a renowned career as both a conductor and educator to his role as music director of The Orchestra Now. He has been music director of the American Symphony Orchestra since 1992, artistic codirector of Bard SummerScape and the Bard Music Festival since their creation, and president of Bard College since 1975. He was the music director of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra from 2003–11, and is now conductor laureate. In 2018 he assumed artistic directorship of Campus Grafenegg and Grafenegg Academy in Austria. Mr. Botstein is also a frequent guest conductor with orchestras around the globe, has made numerous recordings, and is a prolific author and music historian. He is the editor of the prestigious The Musical Quarterly, and has received many honors for his contributions to music.
More info online at leonbotstein.com.
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LEON BOTSTEIN conductor
Since her triumph at Denmark’s 1996 Carl Nielsen International Violin Competition, Adele Anthony has enjoyed an acclaimed and expanding international career. Performing as a soloist with orchestra and in recital, as well as being active in chamber music, her career spans the continents of North America, Europe, Australia, India and Asia.
In addition to appearances with all six symphonies of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Ms. Anthony’s highlights from recent seasons have included performances with the symphony orchestras of Houston, San Diego, Seattle, Ft. Worth, and Indianapolis, as well as the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France. Being an avid chamber music player, she appears regularly at La Jolla
SummerFest and Aspen Music Festival. Her wide-ranging repertoire extends from the Baroque of Bach and Vivaldi to contemporary works of Ross Edwards, Arvo Pärt and Phillip Glass.
An active recording artist, Ms. Anthony’s work includes releases with Sejong Soloists’ “Vivaldi: The Four Seasons” on Naxos, a recording of the Philip Glass Violin Concerto with Takuo Yuasa and the Ulster Orchestra on Naxos, Arvo Pärt’s Tabula rasa with Gil Shaham, Neeme Järvi and the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra on Deutsche Grammophon, and her latest recording of the Sibelius Violin Concerto and Ross Edwards’ Maninyas with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra on Canary Classics/ABC Classics. Ms. Anthony performs on an Antonio Stradivarius violin, crafted in 1728.
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Cellist Peter Wiley enjoys a prolific career as a performer and teacher. He is a member of the piano quartet Opus One, a group he co-founded in 1998 with pianist Anne-Marie McDermott, violinist Ida Kavafian, and violist Steven Tenenbom. He attended the Curtis Institute of Music as a student of David Soyer and joined the Pittsburgh Symphony in 1974. The following year, he was appointed Principal cellist of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, a position he held for eight years. From 1987 through 1998, he was cellist of the Beaux Arts Trio. In 2001, he succeeded his mentor, David Soyer, as cellist of the Guarneri Quartet. The quartet retired from the concert stage in 2009. He has been awarded an Avery Fisher Career Grant, and was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1998 with the Beaux Arts Trio and again in 2009 with the Guarneri Quartet. He participates at leading festivals, including Music from Angel Fire, Chamber Music Northwest, OK Mozart, Santa Fe, Bravo!, and Bidgehampton. He continues his long association with the Marlboro Music Festival, dating back to 1971. He teaches at the Curtis Institute of Music and Bard College Conservatory of Music.
PETER WILEY cello
Pianist Shai Wosner records for Onyx Classics. Among his recent recordings is 2017’s Impromptu, which features an eclectic mix of improvisationally inspired works by composers from Beethoven and Schubert to Gershwin and Ives. Additional releases include concertos and capriccios by Haydn and Ligeti with the Danish National Symphony conducted by Nicholas Collon, an all-Schubert solo album featuring a selection of the composer’s folk-inspired piano works, solo works by Brahms and Schoenberg, and works by Schubert paired with new works by Missy Mazzoli. As a chamber musician, he has recorded Beethoven’s complete sonatas and variations for cello and piano with Ralph Kirshbaum and—for Cedille Records—works by Bartók, Janáek, and Kurtág with his duo partner of many years, violinist Jennifer Koh.
Mr. Wosner is a recipient of Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, an Avery Fisher Career Grant, and a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award—a prize he used to commission Michael Hersch’s concerto Along the Ravines, which he performed with the Seattle Symphony and Deutsche Radio Philharmonie in its world and European premieres. He was in residence with the BBC as a New Generation Artist, during which he appeared frequently with the BBC orchestras, including conducting Mozart concertos from the keyboard with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra. He returned to the BBC Scottish Symphony in both subscription concerts and Proms performances with Donald Runnicles and appeared with the BBC Philharmonic in a live broadcast from Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall. As a concerto soloist in North America, he has appeared with the major orchestras of Atlanta, Baltimore, Berkeley, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Ottawa, San Francisco, and Toronto, among others. In addition to the BBC orchestras, he has performed abroad with the Aurora Orchestra, Barcelona Symphony, Bournemouth Symphony, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, Gothenburg Symphony, LSO St. Luke’s, Nieuw Sinfonietta Amsterdam, Orchestre National de Belgique, Staatskapelle Berlin, and the Vienna Philharmonic, among others. He has also appeared with the Orpheus, St. Paul, and Los Angeles Chamber Orchestras, having conducted the latter from the keyboard in a 2010 concert that was broadcast on American Public Radio. More info online at shaiwosner.com.
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