Missoula Symphony Orchestra Presents Season Opener Concert, 'Fast Machine'
Following the hugely popular Symphony in the Park, the Missoula Symphony Orchestra opens the season with two shows on September 24 at 7:30 p.m. and September 25 at 3 p.m. in the Dennison Theatre.
The concert, titled “Fast Machine,” is aptly named as the first two pieces, John Adams’ Short Ride in a Fast Machine, and Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 1 are very fast moving. “We’re starting the season like a race horse out of the gates!” says Music Director, Darko Butorac. “Adams infuses this piece with a sense of drama and ends in a thrilling climax. His music is incredibly energetic—the audience is going to love it.”
Next up is Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No 1, which will feature American violinist Jennifer Frautschi as soloist. According to Butorac, this piece is a chance for the violinist to demonstrate the rich colors of the instrument. “Jennifer Frautschi is a perfect fit for this,” he says. “Prokofiev’s concerto is the embodiment of sheer romantic beauty.”
The second half of the concert in contrast to machines, is that of nature, specifically water. It begins with the moody romantic musical description of a Scottish Isle by Felix Mendelssohn, Fingal’s Cave. The landscape of this area is battered by water and wind and surrounded by legend, which is reflected in the piece. “A haunting, resonant melody slowly rises from the quiet depths of the orchestra, and dramatic flourishes echo the sound of waves crashing ashore while also building musical tension. Finally the tides begin to recede, and the piece leaves you with a sense of calm,” says Butorac.
The concert ends with another water themed piece, the most famous musical ode to the sea, Claude Debussy’s La Mer. According to Butorac, the piece is not merely a depiction of an ocean in music, but a peek into Debussy’s turbulent spirit. He also says this is one of the most challenging orchestral composition he’s ever worked on. “It’s complex, without a doubt. But we have some of the finest musicians around in our orchestra, and we are definitely up to the challenge.” Added bonus? La Mer is rumored to be the inspiration for John Williams’ score for the movie Jaws—see if you can hear it in the third movement.
Tickets are available online at missoulasymphony.org, by phone at 721-3194, or in person at the Symphony office, 320 E. Main Street. For more information on Fast Machine and the Missoula Symphony Orchestra, visit missoulasymphony.org.
Press Release: September 13, 2016
Media Contact: Lucy Beighle (406) 239-3193