Classically Alive  

 
Classically Alive presents 












(top l. to r, Hector Berlioz, Heinrich Proch, Richard Strauss,  bottom l. to r, Benedict Randhartinger, Carl Reinecke, Leonard Bernstein)

“So Surprisingly Splendid”
- Music for Voice, Clarinet, Horn and Piano -

Connie Heidenreich, soprano voice
William Malone, clarinet
Dave Stoller, horn, natural horn
Abe Minzer, piano

Sunday, December 9th, 2018  -  7:00 pm

    Minzer/Schreuder Residence
     8 Broadmoor Hills Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80906

General Admission: $25.00; 
Students: $10.00; Youth up to 13 free.
Heavy  Hors d’Oeuvres/Drinks Included
PLEASE RSVP EARLY- for reservations and info, 
please contact Abe Minzer at:
	 aminzer@comcast.net or (719) 229-2239


Please join us for “So Surprisingly Splendid” for our last concert of 2018, a program featuring great diversity with voice, clarinet, horn and piano joining together in different combinations.  

What is so surprisingly splendid ? ... We’ve put together a magnificent evening of music of either lesser known , even obscure composers, or less performed works of known composers.   As we performers prepare this program, we discover more and more, how inventive, inspired, and unique each of these works are, and how these composers have something different to say.  That is, the performers themselves are so surprised by these fine works.  Yes, I love Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, all those cats, but I am finding a special endearment to these more novel works.  Please come to this concert, and find out for yourself, you will not be disappointed.

Our program opens with four songs for voice, horn and piano, by four different composers.  Typically classical songs just have piano accompaniment, but here the horn joins in as another voice, in duet or in dialogue with the voice.  The first work, by Berlioz, “Le Jeune pâtre breton” (The young Breton shepherd) is a lovely, lilting, pastoral work with disarming folk-like simplicity.  Next follows, “Der Mutter wird mich fragen” (The mother will ask me) by Heinrich Proch.  Now there is trouble in this 4-minute mini-opera by Proch.  What is the mother asking?  Oops, is her daughter now pregnant?  After the fun Proch piece comes the beautiful “Alphorn” by Richard Strauss, a work of depth and maturity. It is amazing that it was written by Strauss at the age of 14.  The “Alphorn” was a gift to Strauss’ father, who was Wagner’s favorite horn player.  The set of four songs, closes with “Der Wunsch” (The Wish) by Benedict Randhartinger.  This is the most extended work of the set, has brilliant writing for each performer, and is in an epic, narrative style.  Benedict Randhartinger back in the day wasn’t so obscure.  In fact, Randhartinger, was good friends with Franz Schubert.  He was also a singer, tenor voice, and in an 1839 vocal recital, Randhartinger’s “accompanist” on the piano was Franz Liszt, the so-called greatest pianist that ever lived.


The remainder of the first half is devoted to the music of Leonard Bernstein whose 100th anniversary of his birth is celebrated this year.  Bernstein was clearly a genius, and has been a major force in 20th century musical life.  Beyond composition, Bernstein is recognized as one of the greatest orchestral conductors, and his contribution as a music educator even with the general public is without parallel, and further he was a great humanitarian and philanthropist.  

As a composer, he wrote both classical music and music for the theater.  For the latter, he is very famous for composing the music for “West Side Story”, “Candide”, “On The Town” and more.  The Bernstein Sonata for Clarinet and Piano, is an early work, but a great early piece- to my surprise and delight, learning the work for the first time.  The influence of his teacher, American-nationalist composer Aaron Copland, is apparent, but we already see Bernstein going in his own unique direction, and foreshadowing a decade later what was to come with “Candide” and “West Side Story”.  The first movement opens gently, soon followed by an array of different moods- energized, bright, sweeping, rhythmic, even jazzy, before returning to the opening material and closing the movement with a lyric poignancy.  The second and final movement of the sonata, opens with a short lyrical dialogue between the clarinet and piano, which leads straight into the lively part of the movement written in a quirky off-kilter asymmetric 5/8 meter.  The driving music is mixed with a couple contrasting sections that are playful, reflective or melodic.  Learning the Bernstein Sonata has so surprisingly given me so much more appreciation for Bernstein, the composer.

If the Bernstein sonata is a more serious work, Bernstein’s “La Bonne Cuisine”, Four Recipes for Voice and Piano, is a riotous work.  The text for each short song is an actual food recipe, including Plum Pudding, Ox-Tails, Tavouk Gueunksis (a Turkish specialty), and Rabbit at Top Speed.   These pieces are witty, great entertainment, and will bring us to intermission in high spirits.


For our second half, we have just one major work by Carl Reinecke.  In addition to composing over 300 published works, Reinecke was a highly recognized conductor and teacher, spending much of his life in Leipzig, Germany.  Reinecke studied composition with Mendelssohn, Schumann and Liszt, remaining friends with the latter two.  He conducted the world premiere of Brahms’ “A German Requiem”, the composer’s longest work.  As a composition teacher, he had many famous and diverse pupils, including composers Edvard Grieg, Leos Janacek, Isaac Albeniz, Max Bruch and others.  After retiring, he was then able to devote much more time to composition.

The Reinecke Trio for Clarinet, Horn and Piano, in four movements, was written in 1905, near the end of his life.  The first movement is of symphonic proportions with a noble main theme developed throughout, and with many contrasting ideas, and brilliant writing for each player.  The second movement is slower and lighter than the first movement, with sweet melodic interplay, and with various episodes that evoke “A Tale”, the title given by Reinecke for this movement.   The third movement is also lighter, but now as a fast-paced, happy Scherzo.  The final fourth movement returns to the intensity and drive of the opening movement, but now with themes that are friendly, lyrical, brilliant, driving, even virtuoso-like.  The ending calls for a break-neck tempo, and then the noble theme of the first movement reenters bringing the Reinecke trio to its by now NOT... so surprisingly, but SPLENDID conclusion.     
  
             

PROGRAM

Music for Voice, Horn and Piano
Hector Berlioz (1803 - 1869)
“Le Jeune pâtre breton” (The young Breton shepherd)

Heinrich Proch (1809 - 1878)
“Der Mutter wird mich fragen” (The mother will ask me)

Richard Strauss (1864 - 1949)
“Alphorn” (Alphorn)

Benedict Randhartinger (1802 - 1893) 
“Der Wunsch” (The wish)
Connie Heidenreich, soprano
Dave Stoller, horn, natural horn
Abe Minzer, piano

Leonard Bernstein (1918 - 1990)
Sonata for Clarinet and Piano (1941-42)
I: Grazioso
II: Andantino; Vivace e leggiero
William Malone, clarinet
Abe Minzer, piano

“La Bonne Cuisine”
Four Recipes for Voice and Piano
I: Plum Pudding
II: Ox-tails
III: Tavouk Gueunksis
IV: Rabbit at Top Speed
Connie Heidenreich, soprano
Abe Minzer, piano

INTERMISSION

Carl Reinecke (1824 - 1910) 
Trio in B Flat Major for Clarinet, Horn and Piano, Opus 274
I: Allegro
II: A Tale - Andante
III: Scherzo - Allegro
IV: Finale - Allegro
William Malone, clarinet
Dave Stoller, horn
Abe Minzer, piano


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ABOUT THE MUSICIANS

Soprano Connie Heidenreich, received her Masters Degree with High Distinction followed by doctoral studies in Vocal Literature from the Indiana University School of Music.  While at Indiana, she had the opportunity to perform as soloist in well-known operas as well as in the American premieres of several operas by composers such as Janacek and Martinu.  Her solo performance with the Indiana cast of Martinu's The Greek Passion went all the way to the Metropolitan Opera in NYC, and with PBS broadcasts.  

Connie has appeared as soloist with numerous organizations in the Colorado Springs and Front-Range area, Opera Theatre of the Rockies, Colorado Opera Festival, Colorado Springs Symphony and TheatreWorks to mention just a few.  Most notable are her performances as Zerlina in Don Giovanni, Papagena in the Magic Flute, Annina in La Traviata and Solveig in Peer Gynt.  Oratorio highlights include the Bach B Minor Mass, Haydn’s Creation, Mozart’s Grand Mass in C Minor and Handel’s Messiah.  Connie maintains a private voice studio and also teaches private voice, vocal performance and diction for singers at Pikes Peak Community College.  

William Malone, clarinet, Chair of the Music Department at Pikes Peak Community College, will delight all with his mellifluous tones. William Malone excels not only as a classical player, but is an accomplished jazz saxophonist also. With well over 30 premiers to his credit, William Malone is a well-known performer specializing in 20th Century woodwind performance techniques. He has performed and recorded chamber music with The New Events Ensemble on the Nuema and Spectrum labels. William Malone has performed with many 20th Century ensembles Lydian String Quartet and Videmus and has appeared at various Contemporary festivals including the New Hampshire Music Festival and the NOW Music Festival.

William Malone served on the faculty of Otterbein College where he was the Instructor of Saxophone and Jazz studies. Malone was in the doctoral program at Ohio State University where he studied with James Hill. He has earned an MM from the New England Conservatory of Music and a BM from Wichita State University. He has studied with Joe Allard, Joe Viola, John Sampen and Fumiyoshi Maezawa.

Hornplayer Dave Stoller, has been principal horn with the Colorado Springs Symphony, the Air Force Academy Band, The Chamber Orchestra of the Springs, the Civic Orchestra of the Springs, the Little London Winds, and adjunct principal horn with the Pueblo Symphony.  He has worked as horn clinician/teacher, freelance/recording artist, and as chamber musician and soloist. Dave was principal horn for two opera companies in Colorado Springs.  Dave earned a Bachelors degree is from the University of Wisconsin, studying horn with John Barrows.  His Masters degree is from University of Northern Colorado, studying horn with Dr. James Miller.  Dave also studied musicology at the doctoral level, and often performs on the natural horn, a period instrument of Mozart’s time.  As one of the founding members of Classically Alive from way back in 2006, it is always great to have Dave here. 

Pianist Abe Minzer earned degrees in Piano Performance with a masters from the Peabody Conservatory, and a doctorate from West Virginia University. He plays concerts throughout the US, and has appeared as piano soloist in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 with the Pittsburgh Symphony.  Abe Minzer teaches piano, music history, jazz history and music theory at UCCS. Also, Dr. Minzer heads the Piano Department at Pikes Peak Community College, and where he teaches private piano, group piano, music theory, and serves as staff pianist/accompanist. He often performs works of living composers, including world premieres of compositions by Sylvia Hazlerig, Jorge Cardoso, Jim Bosse and Ofer Ben-Amots. Abe  founded Classically Alive in 2006, a home concert series featuring local musicians and world-class talent from around the globe, plus food and drink.  For more information, please visit:  http://ClassicallyAlive.com 
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Under the sponsorship of the Pikes Peak Arts Council, Classically Alive features diverse monthly house concerts, which include food, drink, and time for guests to socialize, and mingle with the musicians.  At the venue, founder, director, and pianist, Dr. Abe Minzer performs along with many top musicians of the Pikes Peak region.  Additionally, Classically Alive hosts world-class visiting artists of national and international reputation, often as part of the Piano Masterworks series and through collaboration with the German arts organization, Weltklassik.  Since its inception in 2006, Classically Alive has presented over 130 concerts featuring over 100 musicians.  The eclectic offerings include a wide range of classical, as well as contemporary, popular styles, jazz, and world music. 
For more information, please visit: http://ClassicallyAlive.com


For reservations/info: Contact aminzer@comcast.net or 229-2239
Please RSVP early - Space Is Limited   
http://ClassicallyAlive.com

For more information on the 2018 season, please click: 2018 season
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Under the sponsorship of the Pikes Peak Arts Council, Classically Alive features diverse monthly house concerts, which include food, drink, and time for guests to socialize, and mingle with the musicians. 

At the venue, founder, director, and pianist, Dr. Abe Minzer performs along with many top musicians of the Pikes Peak region.  Additionally, Classically Alive hosts world-class visiting artists of national and international reputation, often as part of the Piano Masterworks series and through collaboration with the German arts organization, Weltklassik.  

Since its inception in 2006, Classically Alive has presented over 150 concerts featuring over 100 musicians.  The eclectic offerings include a wide range of classical, as well as contemporary, popular styles, jazz, and world music. 
For more information, please visit: http://ClassicallyAlive.com  
 
For Abe Minzer’s website including performance and presentations, Click:
Abe Minzer, Pianist

Want to learn to play piano, go check out:
Minzer Piano Studio
                                                                                                  
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