Performing this Week
The Orion String Quartet: Todd Phillips, violin; Daniel Phillips, violin; Steven Tenenbom, viola; Timothy Eddy, cello
Tara Helen O’Connor, flute
The Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival
Summer 2010 — Week 10
Welcome to the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival radio series production blog, home of program out takes, artist commentary, and other related tangents we like to call "web extras."
In Week 10 of our concerts from Santa Fe, flutist Tara Helen O'Connor shared the stage with oboe player Liang Wang, clarinetist Ricardo Morales, uber-bassoonist Milan Turkovic, and horn player Philip Myers to play Carl Nielsen's 1922 Wind Quintet in A Major. We also heard the Orion String Quartet performing a late quartet of Franz Joseph Haydn, a composer this ensemble holds in high esteem.
The nationally syndicated radio series can be heard in the Chicago area April through June 2010 when 98.7 WFMT presents the series Sunday mornings at 11am. And of course, WFMT also offers free, live streaming at wfmt.com and on a free, downloadable app for your iPhone.
Scroll below to hear how Orion cellist Tim Eddy fell in love with green chiles and why that's one of the things he misses most when he's away from Santa Fe, and also how violist Steven Tenenbom fell in love with chamber music. That and more, including commentary from the Festival's artistic director, Marc Neikrug...
Please enjoy these items rescued from the "cutting room floor" and the other things found along the way to creating the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival radio series.
Thanks for stopping by,
FRANZ JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809)
String Quartet No. 63 in B-flat Major, Op. 76, No. 4, "Sunrise" (1797)
Orion String Quartet: Todd Phillips, violin; Daniel Phillips, violin; Steven Tenenbom, viola; Timothy Eddy, cello
Here is the master of the string quartet absorbing influences around him and coming up with something that's even greater than what's happening in Vienna at that time. Marc Neikrug comments on Haydn's String Quartet No. 63 in B-flat Major, Op. 76, No. 4, the "Sunrise".
In 2009, Austria issued a 5 Euro coin commemorating the 200th Anniversiary of the Death of Joseph Haydn. The silver 5 Euro coin shows a portrait of the famous composer in profile. Across his chest stretches a bar of his music with the date "2009." To the right are two violins with his name "Joseph Haydn" and the dates of his life: 1732–1809. The official side of the nine-sided coin displays the shields of the nine Federal Provinces of Austria and the denomination of 5 Euros. (Curated content from austrian-mint.com)
When producer Louise Frank asked Tim Eddy what he misses about Santa Fe when he's not there, Tim Eddy told her about how he fell in love with green chiles, the ubiquitous ingredient in New Mexican cuisine.
It's been a thread in my musical life for 31 years, the Santa Fe Festival. So many of the associations that started there in those early years have just continued to develop & bring me fulfillment & all kinds of projects, either at Santa Fe or elsewhere. And so it was on the streets of Santa Fe in fact, that Danny one day asked me if I would be interested in forming a quartet with him & his brother & a violist to be determined.
CARL NIELSEN (1865-1931)
Wind Quintet, Op. 43 (1922)
Tara Helen O’Connor, flute; Liang Wang, oboe; Ricardo Morales, clarinet; Milan Turkovic, bassoon; Philip Myers, horn
British composer and musicologist Robert Simpson writes, "Nielsen’s fondness of wind instruments is closely related to his love of nature, his fascination for living, breathing things. He was also intensely interested in human character, and in the Wind Quintet composed deliberately for five friends; each part is cunningly made to suit the individuality of each player."
Nielsen himself provided a short description of the quintet. "The composer has here attempted to present the characteristics of the various instruments. Now they seem to interrupt one another and now they sound alone. The theme for these variations is the tune of one of Carl Nielsen’s spiritual songs, which is here made the basis of a number of variations, now gay and grotesque, now elegiac and solemn, ending with the theme itself, simply and gently expressed." (Thanks to fuguemasters.com for this.)
This drawing of Carl Nielsen with the Copenhagen Wind Quintet was made in 1922 by P. E. Johannessen on the occasion of the first performance of Nielsen's Quintet. (Image pilfered with gratitude from the Carl Nielsen Society.)
Although he played a trumpet when he was younger, Neilsen was basically a violinist. But that didn't hinder him from composing this Quintet for winds. As Marc tells Kerry, you don't have to be Tiger Woods to know how to play golf, and that Nielsen must have been very good at imagining the feel and sound of the instruments for which he composed this piece.
More about Carl Nielsen is available at the Carl Nielsen Society.