Orff's Carmina Burana Hits the Peristyle Stage February 8 and 9, 2013, featuring the Toledo Symphony & Massive Chorus

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O fortuna! Carmina burana remains of the the most popular works of classical music ever written. On February 8 & 9 at the Peristyle, the Toledo Symphony is joined by large choruses and acclaimed soloists Philip Cutlip, Joshua Stewart, and Kathryn Lewek.

James Meena conducts the full power of the TSO and BGSU combined choruses along with the Ottawa Hills Elementary Children's Chorus for a rollicking Journey from spirited song to sheer vocal strength. To add artful flourish, we also feature the symphony's own Merwin Siu and the North American premiere of Fazil Say's 1001 Nights in the Harem.

Tickets are available at http://www.toledosymphony.com or by calling The Box Office at 419-246-8000.

Merwin Siu, violin (Featured soloist on Fazil Say's 1001 Nights in the Harem)

Merwin Siu holds the David W. Robinson Chair as the Toledo Symphony's Principal Second Violin, and also serves as the TSO's Artistic Administrator.

Merwin has made numerous solo appearances with the TSO, specializing in local premieres of twentieth and twenty-first century compositions. He made his Classics Series debut in 2008, performing Karl Amadeus Hartmann's Concerto funèbre. Other recent highlights include regional premieres of works by Alban Berg, Chen Yi, John Corigliano, Lou Harrison, Keith Jarrett, DBR, and Bright Sheng. In 2007, Merwin appeared with former TSO music director Andrew Massey, premiering Massey's new violin concerto with the Racine Symphony. Merwin is a regular guest on performing arts series throughout the Midwest both as a recitalist and as chamber musician. Alongside appearances with numerous guest artists, he regularly performs with the Zin String Quartet and the Bezonian Piano Trio. He is featured on the MSR Records CD, Deep River, with pianist Phoenix Park-Kim.

Fazil Say's 1001 Nights in the Harem (North American Premiere)

Faz?l Say wrote his first piece - a piano sonata - as early as 1984, at the age of fourteen, when he was a student at the Conservatory of his home town Ankara. It was followed, in this early phase of his development, by several chamber works without an opus number, including Schwarze Hymnen for violin and piano and a guitar concerto. He subsequently designated as his opus 1 one of the works that he had played in the concert that won him The Young Concert Artists Auditions in New York: the Four Dances of Nasreddin Hodja. This work already displays in essence the significant features of his personal style: a rhapsodic, fantasia-like basic structure; a variable rhythm, often dance-like, though formed through syncopation; a continuous, vital driving pulse; and a wealth of melodic ideas that may often be traced back to themes from the folk music of Turkey and its neighbours. In these respects, Faz?l Say stands to some extent in the tradition of composers like Béla Bartók, George Enescu, and György Ligeti, who also drew on the rich musical folklore of their countries. He attracted international attention with the piano piece Black Earth (1997), in which he employs techniques familiar to us from John Cage and his works for prepared piano.

After this, Say increasingly turned to the large orchestral forms. Taking his inspiration from the poetry (and the biographies) of the writers Nâz?m Hikmet and Metin Alt?ok, he composed works for soloists, chorus and orchestra which, especially in the case of the oratorio Nâzim, clearly take up the tradition of composers such as Carl Orff. In addition to the modern European instrumentarium, Say also makes frequent and deliberate use in these compositions of instruments from his native Turkey, including kudüm and darbuka drums and the ney reed flute. This gives the music a colouring that sets it apart from many comparable creations in this genre. In the year 2007 he aroused international interest with his Violin Concerto 1001 Nights in the Harem, which is based on the celebrated tales of the same name, but deals specifically with the fate of seven women from a harem. Since its world premiere by Patricia Kopatchinskaja, the piece has already received further performances in many international concert halls.

More On: Journey, The Box Office, The Young, The End, The Magic, Carnegie Hall, Washington National Opera, Metropolitan Opera.

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by Peter Danish