Pacific Symphony Dives Into New Year with Mozart's REQUIEM, Now thru 2/3
Mozart's "Requiem" provides another chapter in the Symphony's "Departures" theme, which explores final works by classical music's most iconic composers, all of whom had very different and fascinating ways of expressing their last thoughts. Mozart's "Requiem" follows on the heels of Mahler's Ninth and Beethoven's Ninth in 2011-12, Bruckner's Ninth Symphony from the 2010-11 season's "Cathedrals of Sound"; and the 2009-10 season's "A Tchaikovsky Portrait: Child of Glass," which looked at how Tchaikovsky's turbulent personal life shaped his emotionally packed Sixth Symphony.
"We're continuing this tradition of composers' final thoughts with a program that is all Mozart-featuring his 'Requiem," says St.Clair. "We know Mozart didn't complete this before he died, but he left us with 91 pages of manuscript-and there have been several completions done by various people. We know that his wife felt he was ill at the time he wrote it and that he had at least an inkling that these could be his final pages of manuscript. And so it is really always a very inspiring and religious experience-a spiritual experience-to approach the 'Requiem,' with a program that really probes Mozart's departure."
Now in its fourth year, the Music Unwound initiative brings innovative new formats and thematic programming to the concert experience continues. Underwritten by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, each season the Symphony produces three very different enhanced concert experiences created through contextual backdrops in an attempt to give the music deeper meaning-this year beginning with a concert that took place in November 2012, "Come to the Cabaret." As the second Music Unwound concert, Mozart's Requiem is delivered through an array of media.
"This particular program will be linked together with dialogue, actors, lighting, pictures and pictorials, so that we can get a deep sense of Mozart's final years and final days, as he was struggling to complete this 'Requiem' at The End of his life," says St.Clair. "It's going to be a very, very interesting compilation of Mozart's work, all having to do with his departure, ending with his Requiem."
In the lobby, patrons are going to encounter Mozart Mashup-a musical game of dice- originally called a Musikalisches Würfelspiel, which began as a system for using dice to randomly generate music from pre-composed options. These games were quite popular throughout Western Europe in the 18th century. In 2013, Symphony patrons swipe a touch pad, which then yields a "virtual dice roll" resulting in a number between two and 12-with the number corresponding to a specific measure of music. The process is repeated to produce 15 different measures, in order to complete a score. The newly arranged scores are revealed electronically via a computer and flat-screen TV and a violinist and cellist from the Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra (PSYO) perform the music. This process is repeated, each time revealing new music determined by chance. The PSYO musicians perform the patron-generated scores on both the Unwound and Connections Mozart concerts.
Pacific Symphony's classical series performances are made possible by the Hal and Jeanette Segerstrom Family Foundation, with additional support from American Airlines, The Westin South Coast Plaza, KUSC and PBS SoCal. The Thursday, Jan. 31, concert is sponsored by the Shanbrom Family Foundation and Friday, Feb. 1, is sponsored by Symphony 100.