January 20 & 21, 2024
Adam Flatt, Conductor
Erica Brookhyser, Mezzo-Soprano
The Newport Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Music Director Adam Flatt, will greet the new year with a program titled Magical Tales for their fourth of five concerts in the 2023-24 season. The concert’s program is inspired by vivid works of theatrical storytelling that engage the listener with lush and intense musical reflections on the power of love.
The opening work is El Amor Brujo (Love, Bewitched), ballet music by Spanish composer Manuel de Falla. The tale concerns a young, widowed gypsy, Candelas, sung by Newport’s own famed mezzo-soprano, Erica Brookhyser. Candelas is haunted by the ghost of her jealous husband. To free herself from his unwanted attention, Candelas and Carmelo, her new lover, must exchange a kiss of perfect love. In a series of dances that de Falla ingeniously composed in the Flamenco and Andalusian idioms, the ghost first frightens the couple in the Dance of Terror. Candelas responds by trying to exorcise the spirit in the rousing, crowd-pleasing movement Ritual Fire Dance. And then while the ghost is distracted, Candelas and Camelo enjoy their perfect kiss during the introspective musical embrace, Dance of the Game of Love.
Following this, the audience will enjoy the dreamy, impressionistic music from the ballet music composed by Charles T. Griffes The White Peacock. Inspired by a poem of the same name penned by Fiona MacLeod, Griffes noted: “It pictures a wonderful garden filled with gorgeous color, where a white peacock moves about slowly ‘as the soul, as the breath of all this beauty.’ The music tries to evoke the thousand colors of the garden.”
Following intermission, Ms. Brookhyser will return to the stage to sing four selections from the ever popular Old American Songs, arranged by Aaron Copland: Simple Gifts, Long Time Ago, At the River and Zion’s Walls.
The final selection of the program is a favorite audience-pleaser, The Firebird Suite by Igor Stravinsky. This masterwork expertly portrays all the elements of the Russian fairy tale in which the Crown Prince uses the mystical Firebird as his helper to free his beloved from the evil king’s castle. The full forces of the orchestra are employed, including piano and harp along with several extra percussion instruments, that lead the listener through the mystical landscapes and passionate emotions of the magical tale, finishing the concert with one of the greatest and most satisfying endings in the symphonic repertoire.
NSO 2023-2024 Season: The Newport Symphony Orchestra is pleased to present 5 pairs of spectacular symphonic concerts in the Newport Performing Arts Center. In addition to our regular season, make plans to attend our Chamber Music Concerts, which take place on select Saturday evenings in the intimate Doerfler Theater, overlooking Yaquina Bay, at Pacific Maritime Heritage Museum on Newport’s historic bayfront. Dates: Saturday, October 21, 2023, Saturday, April 13, 2024, and Saturday, May 25, 2024.
The Newport Symphony Orchestra is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and the only year-round, professional symphony orchestra on the Oregon coast. Founded in 1988. Learn more at www.NewportSymphony.org.