Southeastern Symphony Orchestra to present ‘A Night of Great Masterworks’


Friday, March 16, 2018 
by: Tonya Lowentritt


     HAMMOND – The Southeastern Louisiana University Symphony Orchestra will present a concert titled “A Night of Great Masterworks – Music by Weber, Mozart and Beethoven,” at Southeastern’s Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts on March 21.
     Featuring three masterpieces that anticipate the romantic style of the 19th century, the concert will be held at 7:30 p.m. in the downtown Hammond theatre and will be conducted by Orchestra Director and Assistant Professor of Violin Victor Correa-Cruz.
     The first piece in the program, the Overture to Oberon by Weber, precedes an opera based on love and magic, said Correa-Cruz.
     “In this piece the horn is given supernatural qualities. It will be heard by itself at the opening of the overture, providing one of the most inspiring moments of the evening,” Cruz said. “In terms of expression, the piece uses the language of the classical period but achieves heroic moments that belong to new aesthetics. It displays a brilliant orchestration that expands the classical orchestra by including four horns and three trombones.”
     Correa-Cruz said that with Mozart’s piece, the romantic piano concerto is established.
     “Concerto K. 466 in D minor is not a typical work in Mozart ‘s catalogue. The key of D minor is the same used for Don Giovanni and the Requiem, and it was believed to have demonic connections at that time,” he said. “It allowed Mozart to unleash his passions and to exploit the possibilities of the pianoforte, the predecessor of our modern piano, in a new style that later inspired composers like Grieg and Listz, to name a few.”
     Pianist Washington Garcia, a Steinway artist and director of the School of Music at the University of Nebraska-Omaha, is the guest soloist for Mozart’s piano concerto. Garcia holds a bachelor of music from the National Conservatory of Music in Ecuador and master’s and doctoral degrees from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, where he graduated at the age of 25 as the youngest Latin American to have received a doctoral degree in piano performance.
     Also on tap for the concert is Beethoven’s first symphony, which pays tribute to Mozart and Haydn, but breaks the classical balance with abrupt dynamic changes, sforzandi, and unexpected harmonies, Correa-Cruz said.
     “The symphony was finished in 1800, when the composer was still enjoying healthy hearing, and it shows a very optimistic approach,” he explained. “The free organization of the pulse, as well as its articulation and phrasing, opened new paths that led to the romantic symphonies of Brahms and Schumann.”
     Tickets for the concert are $10 adults; $5 Southeastern faculty/staff, seniors, and non-Southeastern students; and free to Southeastern students with university I.D. Tickets are available at the Columbia Theatre box office, located at 220 E. Thomas St., 985-543-4371. Box office hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday – Friday, and one hour before the performance.
     For more information about the concert, contact the Department of Music and Performing Arts at 985-549-2184.

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