Friday, July 8, 2016

Tanglewood — 2016/07/08-10

Tanglewood resumes this weekend, with the usual schedule of major concerts Friday and Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoon. This year WCRB has decided to record the Sunday concert and broadcast and stream it in the evening. So we have three evenings each weekend of music from Tanglewood.

Friday, July 8.  The opening night concert features Joshua Bell. Here's the BSO performance detail page's description:
The Boston Symphony Orchestra opens its 2016 Tanglewood season on Friday, July 8, at 8 p.m., with an Opening Night at Tanglewood program featuring music by Ravel, Saint-Saëns, and Prokofiev, led by Canadian conductor Jacques Lacombe. The performance features American violinist and Tanglewood favorite Joshua Bell as soloist in Saint-Saëns's romantic Violin Concerto No. 3. Mr. Lacombe opens the program with Ravel's raucous and colorfully Spanish-flavored Alborada del gracioso, and closes it with Prokofiev's popular Symphony No. 5, a work composed in just one month in 1944 and given its American premiere in 1945 by Serge Koussevitzky and the BSO.

Joshua Bell made his debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood in 1989 at age 21, and has returned to the festival every summer since. Jacques Lacombe made his BSO debut at Tanglewood during the 2014 season, and returns this summer for the third year in a row.
(Some emphasis added.)

The page also has links to audio previews and program notes, with performer bios available by clicking the thumbnail pictures.

None of the pieces is on my favorites list, but it should all be nice to listen to. Prokofiev can be a bit modern, but he's no Stravinsky, and he gave us  "Peter and the Wolf,"so I think it'll be worth hearing

Saturday, July 9.  Here's the description from the BSO's program detail page:
Jacques Lacombe returns to lead a second consecutive program with the BSO. Debussy's revolutionary symphonic poem  Prelude to The Afternoon of a Faun and Ravel's atmospheric and beautiful  Daphnis and Chloe, Suite No. 2, two quintessential French impressionist works that are specialties of the orchestra, open the program. For the second half, Mr. Lacombe and the BSO are joined by soprano  Nadine Sierra and tenor  Jean-Francis Monvoisin, both making their BSO and Tanglewood debuts, as well as baritone  Stephen Powell and the  Tanglewood Festival Chorus, for the drama and the spectacle of Orff's rousing  Carmina burana.
Seiji Ozawa, following advice from his doctor to postpone any plans to travel abroad at this time, has had to cancel his Tanglewood appearances this summer due to lack of physical strength.
At the end of Maestro Ozawa's month-long stay in Europe (where he performed with the Berlin Philharmonic in Berlin and the Seiji Ozawa International Academy Switzerland in Paris) this past April, due to overwork Ozawa developed a fever which resulted in weight loss. Upon his return to Japan, Ozawa continued with another demanding period of work, which further weakened his immune system. After thorough discussions with his doctors, family, and all concerned, Maestro Ozawa has decided to follow his doctors' advice and during the next few months primarily focus on recovering his physical strength. Ozawa, therefore, has had to reschedule his performance activities for this summer, which has unfortunately resulted in cancellation of his concerts at Tanglewood. We wish Seiji a speedy recovery and look forward to his return visit to Tanglewood in future seasons.
Quote from Seiji Ozawa
"I am very very sad and sorry that I will have to miss this summer's Tanglewood. I miss the Ground of Tanglewood and all my old colleagues and friends. Missing being in our house in West Stockbridge and playing tennis there. I am concentrating on eating and I am gaining more body strength now. I am so much looking forward to returning to Tanglewood SOON. My young colleagues, music students of Seiji Ozawa International Academy Switzerland will be there with you. They are so concentrated on playing Chamber music and Ensemble. I hope you will all enjoy their music-making as much as I enjoy."

Quote from Mark Volpe, BSO Managing Director
"I know that Seiji is very disappointed not to be able to join us this summer at Tanglewood, as he was so very much looking forward to returning to the festival and working with his beloved Boston Symphony Orchestra and Tanglewood Music Center, introducing us all to his treasured Swiss Academy, and reconnecting with the many audience members who have supported him so passionately over the years. All of us at the BSO will miss Seiji's presence this summer, but we understand that he has to follow his doctors' advice to take the time needed to recover his strength after a busy work schedule in Europe and Japan in April and early May. We wish Seiji a speedy recovery and look forward to his return to Tanglewood in future seasons."
(Some emphasis added.)

The program detail page has the usual links to background information. I hadn't realized that Seiji Ozawa was scheduled to conduct. It's too bad his health isn't up to the trip.

French impressionism isn't my favorite cup of tea, and I have little use for Orff's setting of the mediæval Carmina Burana, but the works are much liked by others, so don't let me be a wet blanket on the Tanglewood lawn. I'm just happy I won't be missing something a really, really, really want to hear when my brother calls from Tokyo at 9:00.

Sunday, July 10.  The Boston Pops will give a concert at Tanglewood on Sunday afternoon but WCRB won't be giving it to us (I'd guess because of contractual problems with the soloist). Instead, as the station's BSO page informs us:
Sunday, July 10, 7pm
Film Night, from Symphony Hall!

In a special encore broadcast from Symphony Hall, Laureate Conductor John Williams and Pops Conductor Keith Lockhart team up to lead a program of cinematic magic, with music from unforgettable films across the decades!
The Friday and Saturday concerts can be heard via WCRB radio or web at 8:00 p.m., Boston Time. That home page, in addition to the link to listen over the web, gives information about other special programming which may be of interest. Their BSO page, in addition to the description of the Sunday encore concert posted above, gives similar information about the remaining Tanglewood concert broadcasts and various other interesting items and links.

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