The Southeast Missouri Symphony will present Beethoven’s “Fifth Symphony” in concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 6, in the Donald C. Bedell Performance Hall on Southeast Missouri State University’s River Campus as part of its 2017—2018 subscription series concerts.
The concert will include Beethoven’s “Egmont Overture” as well as the “Fifth Symphony,” and will also feature the winners of this year’s Rising Star and Concerto and Aria competitions as soloists with the orchestra. A short pre-concert talk is scheduled for 6:45 p.m. in in the Bedell Performance Hall and is free for any ticket holders of the evening’s concert.
The program will open with Ludwig van Beethoven’s popular “Egmont Overture” for symphony orchestra. Written during Beethoven’s “Middle Period,” this overture commemorates a historical figure, Count Egmont, who fought against oppression and for freedom in northern Europe in the 16th century. In its dramatic concept and victorious conclusion, the “Egmont Overture” often is compared to Beethoven’s “Fifth Symphony,” which was composed just a few years earlier. Next on the concert, the orchestra will perform Camille Saint-Saens “Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso” for solo violin and orchestra. This late Romantic work was written for the violin virtuoso Pablo de Sarasate and is imbued throughout with exciting violin passagework, soulful melodies and attractive harmonies. Rising Star Competition Winner, Maya Kilburn, violin, will be the soloist with the orchestra for this piece. The first half of the concert will conclude with the brilliant first movement of the “Violin Concerto” by Armenian composer Aram Khachaturian, arranged for flute soloist and orchestra. Written in 1940, this flamboyant and exciting work was well received on its premiere in Moscow. A number of years later, French flutist Jean-Pierre Rampal adapted it for performance on the flute, with the encouragement of Khachaturian. For this performance, Allison Movesian, flute, winner of this year’s Concerto and Aria Competition, will be the soloist with the orchestra.
The second half of the concert will feature Ludwig van Beethoven’s famous “Fifth Symphony.” First performed in Vienna in 1808, this symphony rapidly became one of the most popular and admired symphonies of all time; its distinctive four note opening pattern is one of the most recognized musical motives ever written. The inherent dramatic qualities of the symphony have led critics and listeners alike to read into the motive the idea of “fate knocking at the door.” Certainly, the symphony is rich in emotion and expression. The impassioned and stormy first movement is followed by a more gentle, reflective second movement. The third movement, which ensues, is full of suspense and anxiety, eventually culminating in the radiant, triumphant, joyous final movement. Perhaps the symphony is a representation of Beethoven’s feelings — anxiety and anger over his deafness, followed by reflection, leading ultimately to joy and optimism. In any case, generation after generation of audiences have related to its energy and drama, and been inspired by the beauty of this masterpiece.
Kilburn is a 15-year old student from Muncie, Indiana. She began her violin students at age 4 and has won numerous competitions and has performed as soloist with the Fort Wayne, Muncie, and Louisville Symphonies, and on tour in the United States, Central America and Japan. She studies at the Indiana University Jacobs School String Academy. She has also performed in master classes and lessons for several artists and has performed on many recitals with her parents throughout the Midwest, Japan and Central America, and was featured on an Indiana Public Radio broadcast. In 2017, Kilburn taught violin masterclasses in San Jose, Costa Rica, at the Universidad Nacionale and La Castella Arts High School. In March, she has three concerto appearances, and will then compete as a semi-finalist in the Johansen International Competition in Washington, DC. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, cooking, and spending time with her dogs Cocoa and Sophia.
Movesian is a senior at Southeast Missouri State University, where she is completing a double degree in music performance and music education. A winner of the MMTA State Auditions in 2015 and 2017, Movesian also has performed as a member of the Missouri All-Collegiate Orchestra and in orchestra and chamber music concerts in Italy.
“I am very excited about this upcoming performance,” said Dr. Sara Edgerton, the conductor of the Southeast Missouri Symphony. “Our two concerto soloists are amazing, and they will give thrilling performances of beautiful works by Saint-Saens and Khachaturian. And, it is always a great pleasure and honor to perform Beethoven’s magnificent ‘Fifth Symphony.’ The energy and emotion in this work truly make it a masterpiece for all time.”
Tickets may be purchased by contacting the River Campus Box Office, located in the Cultural Arts Center, 518 S. Fountain St., weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., by calling (573) 651-2265, or online at RiverCampus.org.